When you’re looking for ways to earn a passive income, the term “affiliate marketing” may not be the first that comes to mind. You might think of “MLM” or “multi-level marketing” instead. But, really, affiliate marketing is just as effective and has just as many benefits as those above-mentioned examples.
In fact, the most successful “affiliates” out there make a living solely from affiliate marketing. Even better, you don’t have to have a massive following to get started (though it certainly helps). You’ll simply need to have a blog or website that’s relevant to a niche market – and preferably a controversial one. From there, all you need is a few high-quality products to promote and you’re set.
In this article, you’ll discover 5 ways in which you can make a passive income stream with affiliate marketing. You’ll also learn exactly what these products are and how you can promote them to earn money.
Create A Blog
If you’re completely new to affiliate marketing, maybe the first thing you should do is to create a blog. It doesn’t have to be super-professional or anything like that – it can be very informal. But, having a blog will certainly help you to establish your authority in your niche and make your life as an affiliate marketer a bit easier.
A blog provides you with several benefits. For one thing, it’s easy to write blog posts for. They can be on any topic you want, and there are literally thousands of topics you can cover. Plus, whenever you have new content, you can quickly and easily distribute it to your audience. The best part is that once you have a few high-quality articles on your blog, it’ll be highly visible to anyone searching for information on your chosen topic. They’ll discover you and you’ll eventually start earning affiliate income off the back of your blog.
Distribute Free Product Samples
Another effective way to make money from an affiliate marketing campaign is to simply give away free product samples. If someone is interested in your product, they’ll most likely click through to your site to learn more. From there, they’ll be converted into a paying customer and hopefully become a recurring one. Plus, you’re constantly reminded of your product in your blog posts, social media posts, and emails (just to name a few).
The above-mentioned method is often referred to as “sampling”, or “sampling affiliate marketing”. Basically, you’re paying someone to try out your products (or give them away for free) in exchange for an advertisement or link to your site. This method is highly effective because people want to try new things and be reminded of your product every day, so it continues to generate revenue for you even after the initial free trial. And what’s more, you don’t necessarily need to have a massive audience to be able to do this. Simply start a blog in your niche and give away free product samples to gain some traction.
Create Online Courses
Another way to earn money off an affiliate marketing campaign is to create an online course. An online course is simply a series of lessons or a guide that you can teach people either directly (via a direct link) or indirectly (with an affiliate link to a relevant product or service).
The best thing about online courses is that you can create them on any topic you want. There are no restrictions apart from your time. The great thing about online courses is that you can make money from them no matter what type of blog or website you have. You don’t necessarily need a massive audience to succeed with an online course. Simply pick a topic that you’re an expert in and can teach other people. Then, create a series of lessons that you can actually go through to help your audience navigate their way through a specific process or task. You can use tools like Udemy, Teachable, or Canva’s Learning Lab to build your course.
Start An Online Store
Creating an online store isn’t as hard as it sounds. All you need is a small e-commerce platform like Shopify, BigCommerce, or Woocommerce and you can be up and running in no time. These platforms have made it very easy for anyone to get started and set up a shop in minutes, without the need for any specialized knowledge. Plus, you can use their built-in payment gateways to accept credit cards seamlessly.
The best part about an online store is that it doesn’t necessarily have to generate income directly from the site – you can use the store as an online marketplace to sell and exchange products. For instance, you can set up a clothing store where people can browse and buy clothes. Or, if you’re experienced with sewing, you can start a fashion line and make money off the clothes you make as well as the store.
Many people use their online stores as a way to sell their own goods and those of other companies. The online marketplace, Shopify, even has an entire platform built around this called Shopify Marketplace. It’s a great place to connect with brands and small businesses who want to sell their products online. There’s no fee to become a seller on the platform and it has a very easy-to-use UI.
Create Product Samples
If you’re looking for an even easier way to make money online, you can start a product-sampling program. With a product sample program, you don’t actually have to distribute free products to earn revenue – you can just invite people to come back and buy products that you’ve reviewed or interviewed for the blog. As an added bonus, these customers will frequently become brand advocates and may even mention your site or blog in their reviews.
There are several companies like Prolific that can help you with this. You simply need to enter a product that you’ve already reviewed or are interested in trying and then, once they’ve agreed to take part in your program, you can get on to the next step – sending them regular emails about their experience with the product (or products).
Prolific calls its product sampling program “Product Review and Loyalty Marketing”. Basically, you’re paying people to try out your products in exchange for an advertisement or link to your site.
This is a tried and tested method that’s been used for years and still works like a charm. Simply find a relevant product in your niche, do a quick review, and then, when it comes to promoting the product, you can choose from several options. You can either use a tool like Google Adsense or Canva’s Affiliate Program to put an advertisement on your site. Or, you can get a third-party vendor like Prolific to do it for you, using your affiliate link.
Launch A Membership Site
Another effective way to make money with affiliate marketing is to create a membership site. A membership site is similar to a regular blog or website in that it has regular content updated regularly and has a section for members to leave feedback. However, a membership site has several perks that make it unique. For example, you can give members full access to your private blog where they can read all your previous posts. Or, you can give them access to a private web directory filled with all the resources they need to succeed in your niche. These are just a few examples of the many benefits a membership site can offer. Plus, with a membership site, you can allow people to sign up and pay for a premium service, even if you don’t have a separate product to sell. Simply create a membership site for a limited time only and then, once you’ve gained enough members, start selling your own products.
Get Paid To Take Surveys
Surveys are an effective way to make money online. Simply take a survey from a reputable company that pays you cash, and you’re set. You can do this from home literally, in the shower, while you’re cooking dinner, or even when you’re shopping (via online surveys that pop up as you browse).
The best part about surveys is that you get to decide when you take them. So, if you have the time, you can choose to take surveys when they’re most convenient for you. The great thing about surveys is that you don’t necessarily need to have a massive audience to succeed. Simply select a few choice surveys that you can take advantage of, and then, each week or every few weeks, you’ll receive a few dollars in your account. It’s that simple.