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Got Content? Partner Up With a Profitable Affiliate

Aug 17, 2007
If you are like most site owners trying to make a buck online, you are working yourself to the bone on content. You might be rewriting PLR articles, hunting and pecking through free articles from the directories, or writing articles from scratch. You might even be hiring ghostwriters.

All of this takes time, and time is money. If hiring writers, you already know how much money you're spending. If you're doing your own work, you should keep track of your time, determine an hourly rate that it's worth, and figure out how much you are theoretically spending on your sites. Your site needs to be making cash to reimburse your time, effort and expenses.

We all know that the ultimate way to make money online is to sell our own informational products. Making our own product may seem daunting and hard to market at first. Most of us are well aware of the income potential of Google's Adsense program and the other contextual advertising programs. However, we can't realistically rely strictly on contextual advertising to make money online because we're not in control.

Affiliate programs are a nice balance between marketing our own products and contextual ads. While we do not have control over the affiliate program, affiliate products can offer value to your site and its visitors.

To make money with articles that you publish online, you will need to be choosey about your affiliates and consider a couple of factors.

Factor 1 - Is the Product Relevant?

The most important factor in choosing the affiliates to promote on your site is to pick those whose products will be helpful and interesting to your site's visitors. The affiliate product should somehow relate to the article on which it appears. You might want to add a brief review of the affiliate product somewhere in your article or on a separate page that the article links to. If you have your visitor's interest and trust, you stand a good chance of making an affiliate sale from that visitor.

Some affiliates, particularly large retailers, will offer specific product links that you can include in text advertisements. I have personally found these to be the most effective affiliate programs. Just sticking a banner that announces the company does not seem to work well for me.

Factor 2 - The Payout

When you pick an affiliate, you'll want a program that is likely to result in a profit based on the likelihood and frequency that the product will sell. Some affiliate programs offer a great deal of money per sale, but before you start calculating all the earning you'll be getting from that program, keep in mind that some products are bound to sell more than others. If you sell on product four times a year from a little known company that gives you $400 per sale or sell a well known product 15 times a week at the rate of $2.50 per sale, then you will make more money with the $2.50 per sale product and probably won't need to work as hard to get the sale.

Often times large well known companies will offer a very small profit per sale because they are established and know that their product is likely to sell well. Small, unknown companies, on the other hand, need all of the promotion they can get. Also, because they are unknown, their products are likely to sell less frequently.

Finding Your Affiliate Programs

There are two primary methods of finding affiliate programs. You can sign up with a company that manages the accounts of hundreds of companies, large and small, and apply for the affiliate programs that are managed by the large companies or you can do a web search for companies that would match well with your niche, visit their websites, and see if they advertise an affiliate program. Programs available through the large affiliate managers generally have to be funded, so your chances of getting paid for your sales on a timely basis may be better.
About the Author
Urbain Beck is a freelance writer for a number of websites, including Online Money Opportunities
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