Are your affiliate commissions low even if your site is already enjoying substantial traffic? Then something is wrong with your selection of affiliate programs.
There are affiliate programs on just about anything, but only a few of them are highly profitable. If you want to make money at home then you should be extremely careful in the selection of affiliate programs to join. You should look for the following:
1. Recurring Commissions. If your chosen niche has some affiliate programs with recurring commissions then go for it. One example would be web hosting. Once a visitor signs up thru your link then you get a commission every month as long a he stays with the web hosting company.
My first hosting company had a monthly charge of $24.95. Every time I refer somebody I get $10 every month. I referred 3 people and my monthly hosting was practically paid. Now how about referring 10 people? That’s $100 in passive income.
Another example is membership site. Membership sites for ebooks, audio, video, services, etc. are sprouting all over. If these sites fall under your niche, why not sign-up with them? Some membership sites charge $19.95 or $29.95 per month. Refer visitors to these sites and you get a cut of the monthly payments. Cool! Work once and get paid many times over.
Autoresponder services are also a good recurring income source. I personally use getresponse as my autoresponder. I am paying $17.95 per month. It offers a 2-tier commission system. I get paid 30% or $5.38 on direct referrals and another 10% on sub-affiliate referrals.
I get paid for as long as the person referred continues to use the service. How about referring 10? 20? Aweber is also a good autoresponder service which also has an affiliate program. A lot of internet marketers are using their service.
2. Amount of commission. If you are subscribed to a bunch of newsletters from famous internet marketers, you would immediately notice that when a high priced product is launched they would straight away promote this to their subscribers. Why? They get fat commissions? Do you think they are happy promoting a $10 dollar product?
Commissions for digital products range between 40% to 60% of the selling price. There are instances where they hit 75%. They are this high because the incremental costs of production is virtually zero. Downloading 1000 copies of an ebook is almost the same as downloading 10 copies, especially now that the bandwidth costs have gone down rapidly.
Let’s have an example in computing your commissions. If 100 of your visitors follow the link of a $27 affiliate product you are promoting and 5 of them buy that product, assuming a 50% commission, you get a total of $67.50 straight into your pocket.
What if instead of promoting the $27 product, you pick a $97 item to endorse. Even if you convert only 3 buyers instead of 5 your total commission would still be a lot higher than the previous product. In fact it is $145.50
I personally would not promote if the commission is below $15. The effort involved is practically the same both for the high end and the low end product.
3. Popularity of the product. Admit it. You too would like to be with the winners, with the popular products, with what is in vogue. Did you notice when you go window shopping, you’re drawn to stores or boutiques where a lot of people flock? Curiosity maybe. But the popularity or the crowd did help pull your attention.
Buyers are attracted to popular products. Sort of social proof. At the back of their minds they would be saying: “This could be a great product because many people bought it”. What already sells well could still sell well, until it reaches some sort of saturation point.
Chris Anderson, editor-in-chief of Wired Magazine, and author of the book “The Long Tail” called this the “hit mentality”. People are predisposed to buying the bestsellers, the top 100, the top hits.
Why reinvent the wheel? Sell what people want to buy. If you intend to sell Clickbank products, go to Clickbank marketplace and browse for items you want to promote. You can sort them according to popularity.
As I wrote this, the most popular product under the Health & Fitness category is the one sold by FatLoss4Idiots. Additional info provided by ClickBank says that the top affiliate of this product banked $100,000 in just 3 months! Amazing!
Another source of information to keep an eye on what product categories are popular is by going to amazon.com. Today, the “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” is the most popular book.
The third most popular however, is the book titled “21 Pound in 21 Days: The Martha’s Vineyard Diet Detox”. (The health and fitness niche is really a good moneymaker!)
What type of products are people buying? What are the top hits? Sell it to them.
4. How long will the affiliate cookie stay. A cookie is the equivalent of a footprint or thumbprint. When the person you referred visits the site you are promoting, a cookie with your affiliate ID is planted in his computer. He may not buy on his first visit, but you still get the commission even if he buys 3 weeks or 3 months later, depending of the cookie’s duration. Unless, of course, he cleans up the cookies.
Most affiliate programs have their cookies set at 30 to 45 days. This would be okay for lower priced items ($20-$50). But for higher priced items, the longer duration cookie should be preferred. Decision takes a little longer for products priced at say $300-$500.
I usually sign-up with affiliate programs if the cookie stays 6 months to 1 year. You just don’t know when a visitor buys, so the longer the cookie stays the better for the affiliate marketer.