This is a huge obstacle many people face when entering the online marketing world: Should I become an affiliate marketer or should I create and sell my own product..?
Before I get started let me quickly define the two business models so that we are clear as to how money is generated with each.• Affiliate Marketing: In this business model you will be making income by referring customers to another person’s product or service. So basically you will sign up with the vendor as an affiliate and for every sale you generate you get paid a commission.• Product Creation: This business model is pretty self explanatory; you will be creating a product and selling it in the marketplace for 100% of the profits. In this example we will be assuming your product is an information product of some sort.There are a lot of marketers that will say the easiest way to start making money online is affiliate marketing. Just because of the simple fact that you can choose a vendor whose product you want to promote, sign up as an affiliate, start sending traffic to your affiliate sales page and BOOM! You make money. Sounds pretty easy. You don’t have to deal with creating a product, setting up websites, dealing with customers, etc.At the same time there are marketers that say creating your own product is easier and the more profitable of the two and allow you to be more in control of your business.
It really all depends on what your strengths and weaknesses are and what you’re looking to accomplish in your business.Let me get some of the pros and cons of each and put things into perspective so you can have a better idea of where you want to get started.Affiliate MarketingIt is a strong argument that affiliate marketing is the easier of the two to start with which is why it is recommended as a starting point for beginners.
Here are a few of the pros of affiliate marketing:• Most affiliate vendors/networks are free and very easy to join. Most of the time you will answer a few basic questions, set up a username and password and get instant access to the affiliate member’s area within a few minutes.• Marketing materials are provided. Once you set up your profile in the affiliate member’s area you will have complete access to all marketing materials needed to get you going such as banners, pre-written emails, etc. In the members area you will also be provided a unique affiliate link which will take your prospects to a complete sales page which has already been created for you. Armed with these materials all you have to focus on is getting traffic to your affiliate site.• All websites are already created for you. As an affiliate you do not have to deal with the headaches that can come with setting up a website. The vendor has done this for you and as long as you use your affiliate link your sales and commissions will be tracked through that link and paid into your account.• Do not have to deal with customers. We all know how difficult it can be to deal with customers but as an affiliate you do not have to worry about this problem. Once you make a sale as an affiliate all you have to worry about is cashing your check and the customer is passed on to the vendor.As you can see being an affiliate marketer definitely has its perks. It’s quick and easy to join a vendor/network, all the marketing materials and sales pages are provided and you do not have to deal with customers. You can focus your time on generating traffic, making sales and cashing checks!Now let’s take a look at some of the cons of affiliate marketing and how you can overcome them.• The competition. Even though it can argued that affiliate marketing is the easiest way to make money online it can be strongly argued that it’s the most difficult due to the competition. There are hundreds of thousands of affiliate marketers you have to compete with to make a sale. At the same time many experienced marketers agree that most new affiliate marketers do not know what they’re doing since it’s such an easy business to get into.- One of the best ways to overcome this obstacle is to educate yourself. Always be a step ahead of the competition by learning what the top affiliates are doing to give them that edge needed to make the sale.• Profit Margins. As I mentioned before with affiliate marketing you are making a commission for referring a customer to a vendor as opposed to you being the creator of the product and earning 100% of the sale. So there can be a lot of profits you are leaving on the table by promoting someone else’s product instead of your own.- This obstacle is really not in your control when it comes to affiliate marketing but the best thing you can do is promote a product with a higher payout of 60-80% as opposed to 25-50%. This way you will be making more income with less sales.• Building someone else’s business. As an affiliate not only are you generating sales and profits for the vendor you are also helping them build their business instead of your own. Once you make a sale and are paid a commission that customer is now in the hands of the vendor which can continue to sell additional products and services to that customer for the lifetime of their relationship.- The best way I know of building your own business through affiliate marketing while also sending customers to the vendor is to set up a landing page of your own that requires the prospect to input their name and email before they get access to the sales page. This way the prospect is on your customer list as well and you can now email them future offers and affiliate products directly. Now of course you will have to provide an incentive to the prospect for them to enter their email like giving away a free report, video training, audio file, etc. We will touch on this in a future report.• Lack of control. With affiliate marketing you really don’t have much control of anything but generating sales. Should the vendor/network decide to shut down or no longer sell the product you are promoting you are left back at square one. When it comes to product creation you have a lot more control of your business and can profits but we’ll be touching on that in a few.- Unfortunately this is a huge downside to affiliate marketing and something you really can’t prepare for. Building your email list as mentioned before is the best way to ensure that you still have an ability to make sales with your current list of customers while you set up a new campaign with a new product.There are just as many cons as pros with affiliate marketing but none of these reasons should stop you from getting started if it’s a business you wish to pursue. One important thing that you want to keep in mind is to take time to invest in your education and skill sets to put yourself ahead of the curve. By doing this you set yourself apart from the competition and a step ahead to making the sale.If you are interested in learning more about affiliate marketing and jump starting your way to success visit my author resource box.Now, just for a second picture yourself being the product creator and having an army of affiliates promoting your products as we move into the pros and cons of Creating and selling your own product.Product CreationProduct creation can be a scary subject for many because as a newbie you are most likely skeptical and completely in the dark as to how an online business operates, let alone creating a product from scratch. But to your surprise it can actually be one of the easiest ways to make money online.
Let’s get into some of the pros of creating and selling your own product and see why it can be an avenue you consider:• Control. When it comes to product creation you are in complete control of just about everything. You are in control of how you market your product, the price, its delivery, and you are in full control of every customer you bring into your business as well as any future purchases they make from you.• Profits. Of course this is a huge reason why many people create and sell their own products. As a product creator you get to keep 100% of the profits from every sale you make. Now there is an exception to this when it comes to setting up your own affiliate program and having other affiliates promote your products but we’ll touch on the power of this next.• Affiliates. Once you create your unique product you can choose to leverage others to help build your business. Setting up an affiliate program can be a powerful way to explode your business on autopilot. You can offer your affiliates a commission of 30-50% and have them sell their butts off for you especially if your product brings high value to the marketplace. Also you can make money while you sleep as you know your affiliates are working hard to make you sales.• Building a Brand. Being the product creator gives you the opportunity to build a brand for yourself in the marketplace of your chosen topic. Since your product is unique you are able to name the product whatever you like and build a brand around that topic. This is very big if you want to build your business through word-of-mouth advertising which we all know is the strongest form of advertising.As you can see there are also some great advantages to creating and selling your own product. You are in full control of everything, you will earn more money, you can build an army of affiliates, and you can build a brand for yourself and your business. But as in everything there is a downside so let’s get into that next.Here are a few cons of product creation and how you can overcome them:• Time. When it comes to your time, creating your own product will definitely take up more of your time then simply signing up as an affiliate. Not only will it take time to create your product, but you also have to create a website to sell your product from. And that can be a headache of its own which we will talk about next.- The great thing about product creation is you can outsource just about every process involved in starting your business. You can literally pay a professional writer to write your information product for you and you take the credit for it. Of course you always want to proof read it and modify a bit to fit your personality and style.• Websites. Once your product is completed you will not be able to make any profit unless you are able to get it published online. For some this can be your worst nightmare. This can cause you a lot of headaches especially if you are not tech savvy. This can easily cause you to quit or never begin to try to make money online, or it can cause you to have to hire a web designer to build a site for you which can be a few hundred to a few thousand dollars in cost. This leads me to my next topic.- Again building a website can easily be outsourced to a web designer who can build you a clean professional website usually within 48-72 hours.• Cost. When it comes to creating a product it can easily be said you will have more start up costs then an affiliate. When it comes to setting up your sales funnel you have certain costs like buying a domain, hosting your website, hiring a web designer to set up you site unless you’re doing it yourself, paying for the graphics to brand your product, etc.- A lot of you may be asking yourself how much are you going to expect to spend on your product creation business? Don’t worry take a deep breath..a lot of the things you will be paying for are really inexpensive. You can buy a domain for about $10 and hosting is about $5 a month. Now I want to introduce you to a site that will dramatically change the way you do business it’s called http://www.Fiverr.com. This is a community of people that are willing to just about anything for $5. Go ahead and visit the site and see for yourself. You can literally have an information product created on a topic of your choice, the graphics and ebook cover created, and a website build for $25-$30.• Customer Support. As the product owner you will be responsible for your customer service and support and this alone can drive you insane and drain a lot of your time and energy. As in any business on or offline you will have your happy customers and your not so happy customers. Your customers will have questions, demands, concerns, etc and it is your responsibility to make sure they get the support they deserve.- Customer support can also be outsourced but unfortunately this comes with the territory of any business and something you will have to deal with. Yes you can have someone take care of your customers service but you should definitely be as involved as possible to make sure they are getting the best support possible.As you can see as a product owner, yes you will be in control, yes you will make more money, and yes you can build a brand, but with all this comes a lot more responsibility then an affiliate marketer.
Before wrapping things up lets touch on a few things that we can all agree on in both affiliate marketing and product creation.• Work from home. Whether you are an affiliate marketer or promoting your own products both allow you to be in control of your time and work from home. For many this a highly sought after luxury to be able to spend more time with family, friends, spouse, etc.• Your day job. Unless you are a super marketer and were born with super online business skills most of you will still be working your day job as you build your online business. With that said you can build your online business on a part-time or full-time basis around your current work schedule whether it is one hour a day or ten hours a day whatever it is that works for you make sure you keep it consistent. Make sure you schedule your online business time just as you would schedule any other activity and make this non-negotiable.• You’re the boss. No matter if you’re marketing as an affiliate or your own product, you are your own boss in both situations and your income is directly influenced by your efforts. This also allows you to make money on demand. If you’re looking to take a vacation or buy a new car and you need a few thousand dollars you can just jump on your computer and set up a new marketing campaign.If you are leaning more towards creating your own products visit my author resource box.In conclusion there really is no right or wrong, better or worse, that was not the point of this article. The point of this report was to shed some light on both business models so that you can be more aware of what you can expect in moving forward with your online business. In my opinion there shouldn’t have to be a choice between affiliate marketing and creating your own product. You should integrate both into your business plan and become educated in both arenas. By doing that you will quickly see that many top affiliate marketers make a killing selling their own products and many people who sell their own products make a killing as affiliate marketers.One thing I do want to stress is no matter what you do it is going to take time, effort and hard work. Don’t fall into the trap that many newbie’s do which is consistently searching for the next plug and play system that is going to make you the next overnight millionaire. And there are plenty of “Guru’s” out there who prey on the newbie community and put out junk products promising overnight millions with pretty sales pages and you continue to fall for them. STOP!! Map out a business plan, decide what you want to accomplish, find one reputable mentor you want to follow and get to work! Focus on following that chosen mentor all the way through to your first online dollar. Lastly, make a promise to yourself that you will not quit before starting the journey!To Your Success,Joshua Zamora
Affiliate marketing can be defined as a widespread method of promotion in which an affiliate is rewarded for every view, sale, and/or registration produced through the affiliate’s efforts (depending on the type of affiliate program).It’s similar to collecting commissions as a typical salesperson would. The more the affiliate sells… the more the affiliate gets paid. It’s as simple as that!Compensation calculations vary but are typcially based on one of the following:Pay-Per-Click (PPC) – a specific amount is paid for each visiter the affiliate sendsPay-Per-Lead (PPL) – where the affiliate is paid for registrations or sign-upsPay-Per-Sale (PPS) – a specific commission per sale is paid to the affiliateIf your goal is to generate your entire income online you can drive traffic from your subscriber lists, your websites, and from other marketing methods to affiliate links.What About Product Sales and Marketing?You’ll want to watch for great products and services with the potential to benefit your niche market and your mailing lists. To build trust and income, it’s best to recommend only those products that will be of specific interest to them. It’s a win-win situation for everyone that way.When an affiliate is marketing any product, the cost of marketing the product is absorbed by the affiliate, so it’s important to keep that cost in mind when promoting products. Typically the higher the percentage of affiliate commissions possible from any quality product, the more that product is worth promoting.When a product is sold through the affiliate’s personal link, depending on the service used, the total sale is divided up among the vendor, the affiliate, the taxing authority, the shipper (if any), and the payment processor.It is common and expected that all affiliate details be spelled out in the affiliate sign-up process. However, you shouldn’t be afraid to contact any vendor to clarify their affiliate program if you have questions. Often you can telephone or email for a fast reply. If they are not willing to answer your questions then you should stay away from them. There are plenty of other quality affiliates programs that would love to have you!Is a Digital Lifestyle for Me?Many standard retailers offer very small commissions for affiliate sales while most internet marketers offer around 50%-75% of the sale for being an affiliate of their digitial product. This is why being an affiliate of digital products can be very lucrative in a relatively short period of time.Although the number of affiliate programs for tangible goods and off-line services is rising, a completely digital lifestyle can be developed solely from digital or downloadable affiliate products that may never take physical form.Of course it’s important to note that as an affiliate of any tangible product, you generally never do more than promote a link to the product online. So in that sense it’s basically the same as a digital product.One of the best places to find digital products to affiliate with is ClickBank.com. They have an automatic affiliate program built into their payment processing service so that affiliate payments are not left up to the product owner to process.Three other good affiliate programs to check into are:CJ.com (Commission Junction)Amazon.comLinkShare.comStaying with reputable, well-known internet vendors makes a great deal of sense because you know you will get paid, you know when to expect a check or bank deposit, and you can see your account details online at any time. Plus, if you do have a problem they are more than willing to take care of it.How Do I Get Started?There are many ways to start with affiliate marketing, but a basic starting point is to have a web site with text or image affiliate links to products you want to promote. Generally you want to stay focused within a niche or interest group to increase your sales potential. In other words, you don’t want to have many different affiliate links to variety of completely different markets on your website. Stick to a similar theme.If you have used the products, your promotional efforts could include a product review based on your own experience along with images and other supporting information.Developing an email opt-in list is helpful in affiliate marketing because it gives you the opportunity to find the products and information with the most potential benefit for a group of like-minded individuals (your subscribers) and tell them about it. A targeted list of subscribers, that you have built a good relationship with could be worth thousands of dollars over time.By promoting affiliate products to several targeted niche markets, it is possible to create a substantial income over time. Especially when the affiliate marketer is only promoting quality products with a real potential to benefit customers within the niche.In conclusion, affiliate marketing is a great way to build an income without having a product of your own, and without having to do much more than get interested people to view product information through your affiliate links. It’s very easy to get started and can eventually put a lot of money in your pocket. But be prepared to put in a lot of time and effort. Making money online through affiliate programs is not easy. If it was everyone would be rich.
Millions of people have jumped on the latest way to make money online and it is called affiliate marketing. Many times, you can set up an affiliate marketing campaign for free online. However, to be truly successful, you will have to create your own website and that means using a reputable internet webhosting business instead of one of those cheap or free online webhosting companies.Before getting any further about how to start an affiliate marketing campaign, do you have any idea what it is? It is a method where established successful businesses online allows you to earn money on a commission basis through the sale of their products on your own website. You have to set up your website and advertise their merchandise through a variety of marketing efforts. In return, you can earn a percentage of each sale that spawned through your website link.It sounds like you are doing a lot of work for free and creating more revenue for an online business. While that is true, you are also reaping the rewards from that increased revenue. Remember, you are earning a commission on every sale instigated from your website. What is so great about affiliate marketing is that practically anyone who can turn on a computer and take an online internet cruise through the World Wide Web can do it.If you become an affiliate, you will not have to supply customer or technical support nor will you have to worry about shipping because no inventory is ever handled by you. This scenario sounds pretty good, doesn’t it? The only thing you have to focus on is promoting your affiliate marketing website online.Perhaps one of the great things about your online affiliate marketing campaign is that is becomes automatic. Except for some routine network maintenance, you can expect to earn money free and clear. Twenty-four hours in a day, seven days a week and three hundred sixty five days of the year …. That is how often you could potentially earn money. And if you go on a little vacation? No problem! Once you set up your affiliate marketing website online, there is little to do, so you will be relatively footloose and fancy-free.Many affiliate marketing programs online are free to join and some will even train you in advertising and promotions. In addition, there are no rules that say you have to stick with one online affiliate marketing program. You can run several of these marketing campaigns simultaneously because they are low maintenance and you can earn multiple streams of income. You are not limited to only one kind of product either. You can choose from a variety of free online affiliate programs.Now that you have an idea of what affiliate marketing is and would like to try this free way of making money online, you have several items to consider and think through. First, what type of affiliate marketing programs will you participate in? There are thousands of options available to you. Think of some things you are interested in, whether it be cooking, reading or other stuff. Then find some free affiliate programs that cater to that particular interest. It doesn’t hurt to enjoy the subject matter!Next in your quest to make money online is your website. If you are comfortable with the html language and can build your own web pages quite easily, then do so. Otherwise, there are a few terrific online affiliate marketing companies that will handle all that technological mumbo jumbo for you. Remember that saying that went something like, “The best things in life are not free?” Well, the saying goes for your website. Do not utilize one of those cheap or free webhosting services. It smacks of the “mom and pop” or unprofessional mentality.For your affiliate marketing website online, don’t just post the referral links to the affiliate websites. You will not get any search engine hits that way. You want web traffic to your website. To achieve this goal, incorporate content articles that are appropriate to the theme of the affiliate marketing links. In addition, there are quite a few free website content sites which might have articles that are handy to your online affiliate website.The only way for your affiliate marketing campaign to work is to drive visitors to your website. There are a variety of ways to accomplish that goal. First, offering a free newsletter or free eBook or ezine and signing up people is one way you can target a certain clientele. With subscribers, you have a built-in mode of advertising. In addition, you can try a free link exchange or an advertising campaign using Google Adsense.Other ways to increase your website traffic and thus increase the possibility of revenue through affiliate marketing is writing reviews of the very products you are touting as an affiliate. Providing free unbiased opinions of the products not only helps consumers make their purchasing decisions, but it also boosts the likelihood that consumers will click on your affiliate links to make a purchase.Free is a favorite word for many people. Offering something for nothing is another common practice that works great with affiliate marketing programs. Think about it: you have a visitor who is already halfway vested in your website. After all, they found you! To keep them coming back for more and clicking your affiliate links, offer a free ezine or eBook download. Another idea is creating a free email course. Through this method, you and your affiliate marketing website are brought to their attention each and every time you show up in their inbox.Because affiliate programs are a dime a dozen these days, you have to really be selective in what you choose. Chances are that thousands of others have also signed up as an affiliate with the same business. That is why it is important to incorporate some of the helpful hints listed in the above paragraphs as well as sign on with more than one affiliate. This will increase your chances of earning revenue.There are more issues to deal with in regards to affiliate marketing. However, these are just a few of the basics to get you started on your road to revenue. Before jumping in with both feet, be sure and do your research. Due diligence is the key to a successful affiliate marketing campaign.
To those who are not familiar with affiliate marketing, two-tier could be a new term to you but to those who are involved in this kind of money-making experience; it could mean a stream of income. Two-tier is an enticing feature of a particular affiliate program wherein, affiliates are allowed to sign-up additional affiliates below them. So that when the sub-affiliates otherwise known as second tier affiliates, earns a commission, the affiliate above receives a commission too.In two-tier system, the first tier of commission is just like in the usual affiliate program. The sole difference is that it has an additional tier/s or sub-affiliates, whereby marketers also gain a commission once the people that the additional tiers referred to the program generate sales. Theoretically, affiliate programs can have multi-tier program with infinite number of tiers, however, there are practical limitations. As tiers increase, the affiliate program draws more webmasters who are mostly interested in gaining profit from other’s work and effort.Two-Tier affiliate program is also recognized as Multi-Level Marketing. When you sign-up for an affiliate program, you are identified as the first tier and the person that you have recruited or encouraged to sign up is the second tier. If there are additional tiers, then the system can now be regarded as multi-level marketing (MLM). But today, MLM isn’t as effective and successful as it was several years ago. It is because at present, affiliates can freely select from thousands of affiliate programs and they can quickly switch from one program to another.You could probably go wrong if you’re thinking that you can depend on your second tier to do the job for you. So if you want to use two-tier affiliate program to your advantage and generate more income by encouraging sub-affiliates to sign-up below you, make sure that you carefully choose your affiliate merchant. Pick those merchants who generate stable stream of high quality products, give high or just commissions, offers real time tracking, furnishes you with a proven and tested advertising arsenal and treat their affiliates very well. You can also sign-up for the merchant who gives high visitors-to-sales conversion rate.It is also advisable if you engage yourself with a web merchant that has a user-friendly website which you can access anytime so that you can monitor your statistics including visits and sales. And if possible, choose the one with powerful marketing tools which you can use in promoting their products.You’re just wasting much of your time and effort and worse, damaging your integrity once you promote poor affiliate program because your visitor will surely presume that the product or service you are reselling must be dreadful too. That’s the reason why it is important to pick first-rate affiliate programs. Through these, you can not only build up a good relationship with your visitor, but also, you can easily get more tiers to sign-up under you. You should also be cautious of some affiliate programs that give more importance on the profits to be earned in taking on other affiliates than on the income from sales, because you’ll just eventually find out that someone has already close those sales without informing you. Usually, this kind of affiliate program offers a very low first-tier payment but a sky-scraping second-tier commission.If you want to start an affiliate program of your own, you surely have to decide whether it will be a single tier or two-tier affiliate program. Who am I to say which of these two programs are better? But let me tell you the benefits you could get out of two-tier affiliate program.First, your profit will increase due to increased sales from the customers that your second tier has referred. Second, you have a much broader customer base to which you can sell your products and services. Then, you gain more and stable income because the customers referred by your affiliate and sub-affiliates could probably develop a lifetime loyalty on your site and your products. Plus, you have an army of sub-affiliates who will promote and resell your products and services to their visitors and subscribers.Two-tier program has been a proven winner and should be the number one choice for the budding affiliates as well as for the affiliate program managers. When you start gaining profits from your site as well as your tiers, this is now the right time to say that you have used two-tier affiliate program to your advantage.