How to create an affiliate marketing website in 9 easy steps

How to create an affiliate marketing website in 9 easy steps
How to create an affiliate marketing website in 9 easy steps

Want to create a website for affiliate marketing? One where you get to make money passively?

Search the internet for ways to make money online, and you are sure to find affiliate marketing as one of the options. It’s by far the easiest way to make money online.

Affiliate income isn’t entirely passive though. A lot of work goes on behind the scenes.

From deciding on a niche and finding the right products to building a website and generating a steady stream of traffic, there’s a lot that goes into affiliate marketing.

The good news is that we’ve outlined all you need to know about creating a website for affiliate marketing here. We walk you through the entire process step by step.

Want to create an affiliate marketing website? Let’s jump right in!

What is affiliate marketing?

Affiliate marketing is where you sell someone else’s product or service through your affiliate links and earn a commission. It is the easiest way to start an online business and make money.

Affiliate marketing has been gaining popularity, evident from this Google Trends report.

Google Trends report on affiliate marketing

Did you know that the top affiliate marketers make well over six or 7-figure incomes?

What makes affiliate marketing so popular? Well, there is more than one reason.

Some advantages of affiliate marketing are:

  • Low start-up costs and high ROI
  • You don’t need a product or service of your own
  • You don’t need to worry about shipping the product
  • You don’t need to handle customer support
  • You don’t require a team, office, or any other overheads

This means you can create an affiliate marketing website and build a thriving business all by yourself right away.

How does affiliate marketing work?

There are three primary entities in affiliate marketing.

The merchant, the affiliate, and the customer.

Affiliate marketing model

(Source: SimilarWeb)

The merchant is the product or service owner. They take care of shipping, handling customer support, and everything related to the product.

The affiliate (also referred to as a publisher) is you. You’ll create a website for affiliate marketing and then promote the product or service through various channels, such as your website, blog, YouTube, social media platforms, and email list, and anywhere else you can think of.

Finally, you have the customer who purchases the product or service that you are promoting.

The merchant creates an affiliate program and offers a percentage or fixed fee for sales. You promote the product or service and place links to them within your content.

If your reader, viewer or follower purchases from that merchant using your link, you earn that percentage or fixed fee.

Most merchants run an affiliate program. They let affiliate marketers sign up for their program and promote their products and services.

For instance, Astra also has an affiliate program.

Astra Affiliate Program

When you sign up for an affiliate program and get approved, you’ll find your unique affiliate links in your account dashboard.

For instance, when you sign up and get approved for the Astra affiliate program, you’ll be able to access your affiliate links from the account dashboard.

Your link will be something similar to this, https://wpastra.com/?bsf=####.

You can now go ahead and promote your affiliate link across various platforms. When a customer clicks on your link and makes a purchase, you stand to earn a commission.

How do you earn and get paid?

Every affiliate link has a unique identifier. It’s how merchants track the number of clicks and conversions from your affiliate link.

In the above example, the ‘####’ in the URL is your unique identifier.

When a customer clicks on your affiliate link, a cookie is placed in their system. To keep things simple, this cookie allows merchants to track customer purchase behavior.

While some affiliate programs offer a cookie period of up to 24 hours, others provide anywhere from 3 to 6 months.

This means that if a customer makes a purchase within the cookie period, you are eligible for a commission.

For instance, Amazon’s affiliate program has a cookie period of 24 hours.

So, if a customer clicks on your affiliate link and makes a purchase on the Amazon site after 24 hours, you miss out on the commissions.

On the flip side, if the customer purchases multiple products after clicking on your Amazon affiliate link within the cookie period, you stand to earn a commission on all the products.

How much exactly do you earn? Well, this varies from one affiliate program to another. It also depends on the kind of product you are promoting.

Typically, physical products have a lower percentage commission than digital products.

Here’s what the Amazon affiliate program’s commission structure looks like.

Amazon affiliate program’s commission structure

From a 0.2% commission on gold and silver coins, it goes as high as 9% for kitchen appliances and housewares.

Compare this to digital products, and you’ll be looking at anywhere from 20% to 50%.

With Astra, you get to earn as high as $210 when selling our Growth Bundle.

Earn $210 as commission on the Astra Growth Bundle

When you register for an account, you are asked to fill in your preferred payment methods. Some options include a direct wire transfer to your bank account or a Paypal account.

You could select whatever best suits you.

Merchants release payouts monthly or when you’ve reached a minimum threshold. Once set, this happens on autopilot.

Why should you create an affiliate marketing website?

There are two ways to go about affiliate marketing: the good and not-so-good ways.

The not-so-good way is when you go about spamming your affiliate links on social media platforms, groups, and forums.

While it may work occasionally, the good way, or rather the best way, is to build a website for affiliate marketing and posting resourceful and valuable content that helps your audience.

It works exceptionally well if you are treating affiliate marketing as a serious business and want to make money out of it. Maybe even quit your day job and work full time on affiliate marketing.

By posting valuable content consistently on your website you can be seen as an authority in your selected niche.

So the next time you recommend a product or service, you’re more likely to have genuine customers signing up for it.

In addition to making you look professional, when you create an affiliate marketing website and publish content regularly, you get to drive targeted traffic from search engines to your website.

Did you know that a prerequisite for some affiliate programs is that you need to have a website? If the website is already generating traffic, all the better!

Want to go about affiliate marketing the good way or the not-so-good way? We guess it’s the former.

Let’s build an affiliate marketing website the right way.

How to create an affiliate marketing website in 2022

If you want to learn how to create an affiliate marketing website, this section is for you.

We’ve broken this up into nine easy-to-follow steps. Simply follow along, and before you know it, you’ll be launching your affiliate marketing business.

Step 1: Pick a niche

You can spend countless hours trying to figure out the perfect niche or just start with a niche that you are passionate about.

Picking a niche can be challenging. And we get you. There are so many options that you’d like to be 100 percent sure about a niche before starting.

Here’s a short self-assessment that’ll help you narrow down on a niche.

Ask yourself questions like:

  • What are you passionate about?
  • Are people searching for your niche?
  • Can you create content regularly for your niche?
  • Is there a consistent demand for your niche, or is it seasonal?
  • What’s the competition like for your niche?
  • Are there affiliate programs for your chosen niche?
  • Is someone offering you a million dollars to start your niche?

Okay, maybe not the last one, but you get the point! 😉

By asking yourself these questions, you’ll get a fair idea of the niche that you’d like to pursue.

Remember.

You’ve got to create content regularly, be it blog posts, videos, or social media posts. Unless you are passionate about your niche, you may find it difficult to maintain momentum.

Step 2: Find the right affiliate program

Once you’ve decided on a niche, it’s time to identify the affiliate programs out there. This is where you step further into the nuances of affiliate marketing.

Is there an easy way to find affiliate programs?

These pointers should help:

Become an affiliate for the products you already use

This has more than one benefit.

If a product you use has an affiliate program, you are the ideal ambassador to vouch for that product.

You should know its features and benefits the best. And that translates into resourceful and valuable content to help your audience.

For instance, if you’re already using the Astra theme, you’d surely be in a better position to explain how to install it, use the Starter Templates, customize the header and footer, create a WooCommerce store, and much more.

As we mentioned, Astra has an affiliate program for which you can sign up.

Want more options? Here’s a list of 41 high paying WordPress affiliate marketing programs.

Earn using affiliate networks

Another method to find affiliate programs is through affiliate networks.

Affiliate networks act as a mediator between the merchants and the affiliates.

While some merchants develop a full-fledged affiliate management system, some prefer to have it managed by a third party. That’s where affiliate networks come in.

ShareASale Affiliate Network

These networks have affiliate programs for just about any niche.

Some popular affiliate networks are:

Most of these networks have similar approval processes.

Some of those include requiring a website generating traffic, a social media presence with some following of sorts, and insights into your marketing methods.

Want to create an Amazon affiliate store with WordPress? Check out the detailed article here.

Reach out to product owners

Just because a merchant doesn’t explicitly display an affiliate program on their website doesn’t mean they don’t have one.

While some may have it worded differently, such as a partner program or even refer and earn, others may offer an affiliate program only when contacted directly.

Reach out to product owners and check if they have an affiliate program.

You never know until you ask.

Check the commission structure

Finally, we recommend keeping an eye on the commission structure.

You should check early on what commission or what fees per product a particular program offers.

Remember.

Finding the right affiliate program is an important step and helps you build a profitable partnership. Don’t skip it!

Step 3: Choose a domain name

What’s in a name? Well, a lot!

A domain name is an address users see when accessing your website. It’s the only thing they type into their browser to access your site.

Choose Domain

While we have an article dedicated to domain names, here are a few tips to consider while selecting one:

  • Ideally, go for a ‘.com’ extension. It’s easier to remember
  • Keep it simple and short
  • Select a reliable domain name registrar
  • Avoid special characters in your domain name
  • Verify WHOIS ownership of your new domain
  • Include keywords in your domain if possible
  • Use domain name generators, such as Domain Wheel and Instant Domain Search, among others if you need help

Some popular domain name registrars include NameCheap, BlueHost, GoDaddy, SiteGround, and DreamHost.

Step 4: Select a web host and a website builder

While the domain name is the address of your website, the hosting is where all the files, such as pages, content, images, videos, and more, reside. The domain and hosting go hand in hand.

Selecting the right hosting provider can help your website perform better.

Some key features to consider while choosing a hosting provider are:

  • Amount of storage and bandwidth provided
  • Database support
  • SSL and CDN support
  • Uptime
  • Backups
  • Number of email addresses
  • WordPress and WooCommerce support
  • 24/7 customer support

Some popular web hosts include Bluehost, Cloudways, HostGator, Hostinger, and InMotion. You even get Astra Pro for free when you sign up for a Cloudways hosting account.

While most of the hosting solutions offer great value, we recommend SiteGround.

Siteground WordPress hosting

It’s a reliable service provider with a hosting plan for beginners and professionals. In addition to the many features, what we like best about SiteGround is its world-class customer support. They are always there when you need any help.

Another reason we recommend SiteGround is due to its excellent WordPress and WooCommerce support.

As we’ll be using WordPress and perhaps WooCommerce, this is important!

Step 5: Set up a theme and plugins for your affiliate website

Once you’ve set up WordPress, it’s time to install a theme and some must-have plugins for your affiliate website.

A theme determines your website’s overall look and feel. It comes with default settings that impact your site’s layout and functionality, such as your logo, color scheme, and typography.

There are different types of themes to choose from, ranging from free themes to premium themes with a range of features.

We’ll go with Astra.

Astra WordPress theme

Not just because it’s a theme that we’ve developed, but because Astra is the most popular theme in the WordPress ecosystem.

The lightweight theme has over 1.8 million active users and recently crossed 7 million downloads. The theme is fully customizable and can be used with just about any page builder, including the Gutenberg default block editor.

Go ahead and install Astra. You can also import one of our professionally designed Starter Templates that work for any niche.

This helps you launch your website in a matter of minutes.

Just in case you want more options, here’s a list of the 31 best WordPress themes for affiliate marketing.

Once you’re done installing the theme, we recommend installing a few plugins to enhance the functionality of your WordPress website.

We recommend the following plugins to help improve your website performance and security:

  • SEO plugins: Boost traffic by optimizing your website for search engines. Use plugins, such as Yoast SEO, RankMath, and AIOSEO
  • Backup plugins: While your hosting has you covered, you can carry out periodic website back-up by installing plugins. Some popular ones include UpdraftPlus and ​​WP Time Capsule
  • Caching plugins: Want to optimize the speed of your website? Use caching plugins, such as WP Rocket, W3 Total Cache, and WP-Optimize
  • Security plugins: Secure your WordPress website against malware and cyber-attacks. Some popular plugins include WordFence, iThemes Security, and Sucuri

Want more options? Here’s a complete list of must-have WordPress plugins that’ll help you with various website functionality.

Typically, an affiliate marketing website is going to have a lot of affiliate links. Yes, it would also depend on the number of products you promote, but you get the point.

While some links may be short and sweet, the others are lengthy and don’t make for a very professional-looking URL.

For instance, the Astra affiliate link is https://wpastra.com/?bsf=####.

And while there is a shorter version, the full version of the Amazon affiliate link will be something similar to https://www.amazon.com?&linkCode=ll2&tag=XXXXXXXX-21&linkId=9271806315844cbababf972b40981f20&language=en_IN&ref_=as_li_ss_tl

Easy to remember? We guess not!

Here’s another instance.

Let’s say the merchant updates the affiliate link, and you’ve got to have this, in turn, updated across your website.

If you’ve got only a page or two on your website, updating those links will be pretty straightforward.

If you’ve got hundreds of pages, it will be pretty time-consuming, to say the least!

This is where plugins such as ThirstyAffiliates and Pretty Links come in. They allow you to cloak the URLs and display user-friendly links.

For instance, instead of displaying an extra lengthy Amazon link, we can use these plugins to have a URL such as https://domain.com/amazon.

ThirstyAffiliates URL Cloaking

Users get redirected to the original link when they click on the cloaked URL.

The next time you want to update your links, simply edit your cloaked URL, and it’ll reflect across your website.

Step 6: Create content for your specific niche

It’s time to start writing content.

Blogging is a great way to generate content for your website, as you can write about topics you enjoy and are interested in. You can also use your blog to create guides and other types of content that will keep your readers engaged.

What kind of content should you be creating to stand out as a resourceful and trustworthy affiliate marketer?

Types of content to create

Here are some types of content that work best for an affiliate marketing website.

Product reviews

A very effective content marketing strategy is by creating product reviews. Customers are always searching for helpful information related to various products and services.

Product reviews

Suppose you create an excellent product review highlighting the various features, benefits, and information on how to use the product. In that case, you will be educating your audience and, eventually, influencing them to make a purchase.

Some examples of product reviews are as follows:

Product comparisons

Contemplating between two products? How about checking the product A vs. product B comparison post?

Product comparison post

Product comparisons work best when customers would like to decide between two products. It’s like the final push before making a purchase.

What if your content could help customers decide which product to go with? A well-crafted product comparison post can do just that.

You can earn passive income by including your affiliate links as long as your content stays relevant.

Here are examples of a few product comparison posts:

Best-of articles

Another kind of content that works well for affiliate marketing websites is the ‘best of’ articles. You know, the best themes, the best plugins, top page builders, among others.

In such articles, you get to list several products, their pros and cons, and assist customers by giving an honest opinion of the product.

Needless to say, the CTA of each of the products will be your affiliate link.

Here are examples of some best-of articles:

‘How-to’ manuals

Want to drive a lot of website traffic even if you are starting out? Create ‘how-to’ posts!

How-to posts are informational and typically have a step-by-step guide on how to use a particular product.

Some examples of ‘how-to’ guides are:

Remember:

Irrespective of the kind of content you create, the ultimate goal is to help your audience and be the go-to person for information related to your niche.

Step 7: Create an email list

Did you know that an email marketing campaign has an ROI of up to 3600%? This translates to ​​$36 for every $1 spent.

While building a list takes time, it’s well worth the effort.

You are creating a loyal customer base by consistently delivering resourceful content and nurturing your list over time.

How do you build a list? We’ve seen the best way is by creating a lead magnet and offering it for free.

Some popular lead magnets are eBooks, printables, online courses, cheatsheets, trial software, and subscriptions.

Use plugins, such as Convert Pro, to build high converting email opt-in forms to build your subscriber list.

Step 8: Use social media to promote your content

With more than 50% of the world’s population being on social media, we’re guessing your target audience is likely on one of the platforms.

All the more reason why you should be promoting your content on social media!

Like email marketing, building an audience on social media that engages with your content takes time.

But considering the potential reach it has, it’s well worth investing in.

Step 9: Work on your website SEO

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the backbone of any successful online venture and has been for decades. It helps search engines discover and give prominence to your site in the SERPs.

Your website’s SEO plays a crucial role in its success.

If your content is not well written, if your grammar is not up to the mark, or if your website contains any spelling or grammatical errors, your website’s SEO will be affected.

Therefore, ensuring your website’s content is of high quality is essential.

For more details, here’s a detailed guide on how to optimize WordPress SEO.

13 tips and tricks to succeed at affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is a pay-per-click model where you get paid every time someone clicks your link or views your advertisement and makes a purchase.

The more people see and click on it, the more money you make.

While it can seem like an uphill battle at first, once you start getting the hang of things, it’s a fairly straightforward strategy that will provide you with steady income streams.

It doesn’t take much time or effort, but if you want to succeed at affiliate marketing, you need to be willing to put in the work.

We’ve listed some helpful tips and tricks to help you succeed at affiliate marketing.

1. Build trust with your visitors

When someone visits your website and sees your affiliate link, they don’t know you. They don’t know if you know what you’re talking about. They don’t know if you’re trustworthy or if you’re using them as a stepping stone to make money.

Therefore, you have to build trust with your visitors to convert them into customers.

Here are some ways to do this.

  • Be an authority: Having a blog or website on a topic related to the product you are promoting will make you seem like an authority on the subject. Readers will trust what you write more if it’s related to the products you are promoting
  • Be helpful: Blog about topics that are relevant to your audience and are genuinely helpful will help you build trust with visitors
  • Be transparent: Showing visitors that you are a genuine person and not just an internet scammer is one of the best ways to build trust with them. Readers will trust you more if they know that you are not using them as a stepping stone to making money

2. Know the products you are promoting

This is probably the most essential thing to help you succeed at affiliate marketing.

Your strategy will be ineffective if you don’t know what products you are promoting as authority comes across in your content. The opposite is also true!

A good affiliate marketing strategy depends on having a thorough knowledge of the products you are promoting so that you can write content that is helpful and relevant to your readers.

3. Concentrate on offering value rather than selling

The goal is to be the most resourceful affiliate marketer whose only intention is to help your readers. Sales are secondary and should be treated that way.

Of course, you can always force the issue and push for a sale. But if you are looking for the long haul, consider creating content of immense value to your readers and ignoring the selling part altogether

4. Create awesome and resourceful content

As an affiliate marketer, you’re selling someone else’s products. The best way to do this is with great, helpful content.

When creating content for your website, the best thing to do is go beyond just blogging about the products you promote.

You can also create ebooks, videos, and social media posts about helpful topics.

You don’t have to be restricted to just posting about affiliate products. You can also post about topics relevant to your audience and helpful.

5. Provide ratings and scores

By rating the products you promote and giving them a score, you are seen as someone who tests the products before recommending them. It also lets your readers know what the best product is and what ranks lower in your recommendation.

When you rate the products you promote, you don’t have to give them all five stars. 3-5 stars is a good rating range to use.

6. Get creative with the CTAs

CTAs are clickable hyperlinks that are often at the end of an article. They are essential for conversions and can help you get your visitors to click on your links quickly.

Use a combination of text, images, and audio to make your CTA catchy and appealing.

7. Engage with your audience on social media

You must keep your social media channels active as an affiliate marketer. You must post engaging content, answer your readers’ questions, and build relationships with other bloggers and influencers in your niche.

Social Media Channels

A great way to build relationships with other affiliate marketers is by following their social media accounts. Follow your fellow bloggers on social media and engage with their content and they might do the same.

You can also comment on their posts and become a source of inspiration for your readers.

8. Build an email list

Email marketing is one of the best ways to grow your business and enhance your bottom line. You can use email marketing to send traffic to your website, build relationships with your readers and offer exclusive content that gives you an edge over your competitors.

A good email list will help you build a relationship with your readers by providing them with valuable information and updates.

You can build an email list by offering a freebie (free ebook, guide, and more) that your readers want, collecting their email addresses, and sending them an email now and then.

9. Enhance the user experience of your website

Excellent content is only as good as the delivery method, and if your website is not up to the mark, you won’t get any visitors or sales from it.

You have to make sure that your website has a great user experience. It has to be SEO-friendly, has a responsive design, has valid URLs, and has well-written content. You have to ensure that your website is user-friendly and that the navigation is easy to follow.

10. Focus on SEO

So, you know the secret to success at affiliate marketing is getting tons of people to click your links. But where do you even start?

To make your website successful, you first need to focus on SEO. This is the very foundation of all affiliate marketing strategies.

SEO is the practice of getting your website added to various search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo!, and others.

The best thing about SEO is that it’s an ongoing process, and although it can be a tedious one, it’s one that can yield significant results over a long period.

11. Experiment with different affiliate programs

As a beginner, getting stuck into just one type of affiliate marketing program is easy. But, to grow your business and expand your income levels, you must try out different programs and marketing strategies and see what works best for you.

This will help you diversify your income sources for affiliate marketing.

As you learn the ropes and become more experienced, you can move on to more specialized affiliate programs for more niche areas and products.

12. Keep an eye on your competition

As you start in the world of affiliate marketing, it’s essential to keep an eye on your competition. This can help you see where you need to improve your product, service, and marketing strategies to stand out from the crowd.

Suppose a particular competitor is beating you to the punch. In that case, you can use this information to ensure that you’re keeping up with the latest trends and adjusting your product and marketing styles accordingly.

13. Patience and more patience (and some consistency!)

While it can be tempting to jump straight on the affiliate marketing bandwagon and build a website for affiliate marketing immediately, we recommend you give it time and learn the ropes.

First, you need to find a good niche and find products that are related to that niche. Then you can begin to promote your products through the various online methods we mentioned in this post.

With affiliate marketing, you’re not going to make a ton of money right away. It takes time, patience, and consistency.

The good news is that it’s definitely possible. You need to keep at it, growing your income with each passing month, and don’t ever get discouraged.

Want to create an affiliate marketing website?

Affiliate marketing can be a very lucrative and profitable way to make money online. It’s a great way to diversify your income and earn passive income quickly.

While the concept is straightforward, building a website for affiliate marketing takes a lot of planning, effort, and dedication to build a successful affiliate marketing business.

A lot goes behind the scenes, from selecting a niche and signing up for the right affiliate programs to building your website and an email list.

In this article, we’ve also provided some helpful tips and tricks to help you create an affiliate website and succeed at it.

Make sure to keep these in mind, and you’ll be well on your way to making some serious money as an affiliate marketer.

Have you signed up for the Astra affiliate program? Have you created a website for affiliate marketing? Let us know in the comments below.

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