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What Is Affiliate Marketing In A Nutshell?

Affiliate marketing in a nutshell is you promoting other people’s products and services in exchange of a share of commissions.

It can be digital products such as e-learning programs – which comprised of e-books in PDF, video courses, software tools and website templates – and physical goods as in things that people like you and me buy everyday from shops for consumer and entertainment purposes.

To sign up as affiliate is very simple. Simply do a Google search for affiliate programs and you will find dozens in the result listings. But from my 10 years of internet marketing experience, Amazon, ClickBank, Market Health and JVZoo are by far the most popular. While Amazon deals with consumer products, ClickBank and JVZoo specialize in digital ones I just mentioned above. Market Health – as its name implies – mainly focuses on healthcare products. Besides these, you can also promote services as well like autoresponder, domains registration and web hosting that most marketers need as their online tools to start their own online businesses.

While those companies focuses on rewarding you with commissions for every sale you generated for them, there are others who paid you for every lead you get for them whether or not that prospect buys. This comes under the term of Cost Per Action or CPA marketing. Never Blue and Peerfly are 2 most popular networks that stand out while you can also scout for others via Offer Vault and O’Digger CPA search platforms.

Upon signing up, you will be given a choice of whether you want to receive your commissions via checks or direct bank deposit depending on where you live. For ClickBank, you need to generate at least 5 sales before being issued a check and option of whether you want to continue receiving checks or direct deposits. For Amazon, you need to generate at least $100 in commissions before receiving a check if you are living outside US or have those same 2 options if you are American.

Once you are approved, you can start promoting their products and services. Because most of my 10 years has been spent on promoting Amazon and ClickBank, I will touch upon them. Now as much as it is important to learn and earn, you need to focus on who your target prospects are and how you can help them with their needs and wants. For Amazon, the answers are very obvious. I normally look for the best sellers, hot releases and products with at least 4-5 star ratings. But for ClickBank, I will look for those who pay commissions of at least $30 and with high gravity as in most affiliates promoting before I considered whether I should do the same as well.

Upon deciding on what to promote, I simply placed ads first through classified websites like Adlandpro, Adpost, Backpage, Craigslist and Gumtree for quick cash for a start. Then I focused on creating content for long-term passive income such as writing articles, blogging, e-books, press releases and videos.

For information products, I normally link them to my squeeze page and over time once they become my subscribers, I followed up with them on not just email promotions but content and links to my blog posts.

For physical products, that will be my affiliate sites I am sending my visitors to. But I do my best not to make my site look like an affiliate site but a really professional-looking e-commerce site using WordPress, Ink Themes and WooCommerce. So far I have promoted air purifiers, digital cameras, guitars, kindles, robot toys and seasonal gifts like Thanksgiving, Christmas and Chinese New Year.

Now with emergence of Facebook as an all-in-one social media and marketing platform, I now channelled my time and efforts towrds it. Such as fanpages, groups and ads which enable me to target my ideal prospects on based on their age, gender, interests and earning potential based on their occupations.

On the whole, affiliate marketing is like referral marketing but done mostly online and can still earn you a great long-term passive income if you know how and what to do correctly and regularly. It is not a get rich quick scheme but a plan that helps you to earn long-term passively.

Even without meeting and even talking to people as compared to traditional marketing like direct sales and telemarketing.

Coming from Southeastern island of Singapore, Amuro Wesley has been involved in internet businesses for close to 10 years now, promoting other people’s products online as well as his own.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9952342

7 eCommerce Trends That You Might Be Missing Out

Over more than half of the world’s population now love to shop online by sitting at their cozy bed or armchair. The boom of eCommerce has clearly brought some huge remarkable changes in the retail segment and in consumers’ buying behaviours. For you as well as all other retail enterprises, it is no longer a choice to have an online storefront. Rather, it’s imperative to stay in the game. However, for those who already own a vibrant store, it isn’t an easy at all. There are many alike retailers getting into the scene every day. So, what is important for the existing players in the market is to keep them updated with the latest trends being unleashed by eCommerce evolution every year.

If you have a reigning position in the online retail market, then do not miss out the following trends that eCommerce sector is pushing out presently.

Increased mobile use

“The future of eCommerce will be ruled by mobiles” studies have revealed. With a hefty proportion of consumers now tapping into their phone’s screens to place orders instead of logging into the site via their desktops. Further, with Google’s announcement on the ranking algorithm that it would count on the mobile responsiveness of a site, there was even a greater push in the mobile purchases via an app that is site’s exact replication.

Voice Purchases in on rise

While the smartphones are recently being integrated with voice assistants, eCommerce has a great scope to leverage that to offer more personalised shopping experiences. The voice assistants help users to execute different tasks on the phone by speaking it. So, an eCommerce app can deploy it too so buyers can search products just by voicing their wants.

More enhanced fulfillment and payment options

Apart from flexible shipping options, like free-shipping within a specific distance or above a certain order amount, eCommerce owners are offering more lucrative fulfilment to beat out the competition. They are coming up the premium shipping options like same-day delivery, speedy delivery., order-pickup from in-stores and so forth. On the payment side, new options unravelled like Purchase now-Pay Later, e-Wallet, Mobile pay, etc. Thus, on an obvious note, you need to consider them too for securing your position in the market.

Chatbots along with Messenger feature

Chatbots that helps in personalised interaction via the messenger will be on rise in eCommerce segment. Retailers are using them to send out personalised marketing content, recommend product purchases, and notify on deals or coupon offers. Furthermore, with Chatbots, retailers can pay heed to customers service requests or queries any time and get them solved instantly. With increasing relevance of personalisation in eCommerce, Chatbots trend is sure to grow more prominent.

Omnipresence

It’s 2018 where mobile presence has overshadowed everything else in the world. Hundreds of range of mobile devices with different OS platforms are being used by people to search for things online. So, it won’t be any more fruitful for the eCommerce businesses to just target only particular devices. They have to target all, from smartphones to iPhones, tablets to laptops and desktops.

Video integrations along with AR

Popular eCommerce giants have already pushed forth this trend. They are using up videos to showcase products or demonstrate their uses. Besides, some are also toying with the concept of Augmented Reality where users can try a product virtually on screens.

Storytelling that captivates viewers more

Well, in eCommerce marketing, storytelling nowadays goes well to lure visitors to buy because that directly links their lifestyle to the brand. It pinches the emotions of the buyers. Different stats, consumption tips or habits will help in making a difference in the perception of individuals.

That was all for now! The retailers who consider themselves to be a stronger player in the market, need to quickly grasp one or few of these trends as fast as possible before time runs out.

 

7 Fatal Sins of Online Marketing… Plus Secrets to Boost Website Traffic, Sales Conversion and ROI

If set up well, online marketing can help you generate a consistent passive income. There are many stories of how first-time entrepreneurs have made lots of money selling their products and services through online marketing. But there are hundreds if not thousands of times more stories of how folks failed bad. Investing their money and losing it or recovering little.

In its simplistic model, online marketing has three phases. In phase one, you get traffic to opt-in to your system. In phase two, you convert your opt-in leads into customers. Then in phase three, you retain these customers by getting them to buy from you again.

Yet each of these stages have inherent risks. And if you were to commit just one sin of online marketing, it could kill your entire business.

Here are 7 fatal sins of online marketing. Why you should avoid them. Plus, what you should do instead to be more successful.

Fatal Marketing Sin #1: Sending Traffic to Your Homepage

The money you invest in traffic is a sunk cost. The only way to get a return on your investment is by selling products and services. So if you were to get someone to click on your advertisement, you would want the best opportunity to sell them.

Yet 92 percent of consumers that visit a brand’s website for the first time are NOT there to buy. And only 32 percent of those who visited the site with the intention to buy rarely or never make the purchase. This per a study of 1,112 consumers in the United States by Episerver.

That’s why it’s vital you first get your prospect to opt-in and give you permission to send them email messages. Then you can establish a relationship with them. Plus, nurture them with educational information to establish trust and credibility. All which can lead to sales conversion.

The best place to send traffic is to a landing page solely focused on getting visitors to opt-in. But a homepage is the wrong place to send traffic. That’s because most home pages have a menu and too much information to distract visitors from opting in, even if you include an opt-in form.

Fatal Marketing Sin #2: Sending Cold Traffic to Your Sales Page
Sending cold traffic to your sales page before they opt in can be worse than sending them to your home page. Less than one-third of prospects who otherwise would buy from you, buy on their first visit.

By sending traffic to your sales page, you risk losing them forever by revealing your price, without first establishing a relationship with them. If they leave without buying, you have no way to follow-up. So you waste your advertising investment.

Fatal Marketing Sin #3: Investing in Traffic Before Investing in Your Sales Funnel
Why spend on website traffic you cannot convert into sales. Don’t put the cart before the horse, because you may not get where you want to go.

The key to making sales is to have a good sales funnel. So you can generate sales conversion. A good sales funnel includes a series of email letters with links to content to establish trust and credibility. Plus one or more landing pages with persuasive content and strong offer. And an order page confirming the offer with a fast and easy way for buyers to complete and submit it.

Fatal Marketing Sin #4: Not Knowing Your Target Market
All too often marketers make the sin of having too broad of a target audience. Yet targeting a broad audience will not only cost you more, it will also lead to lower sales conversion.

The best first step before you invest in traffic, is to conduct market research. An in-depth survey to help you find the demographic, psychographic and buying behavior characteristics of your true target market. The results can help you identify the most appropriate marketing messaging.

Fatal Marketing Sin #5: Not Segmenting Your Contacts
The era of one message fits all is dead. The advantage of online marketing is you can segment your contacts and give each a personalized experience.

Two common ways to segment your contacts is through custom fields and tags. Then you can group your contacts according to those who have a certain tag or custom field data. And you can personalize the marketing message based on this criterion. That can lead to both increased sales conversion and greater customer satisfaction.

Fatal Marketing Sin #6: Not Split Testing Your Campaigns
Split testing enables you to compare results between 2 and 4 versions of your landing pages. So you can improve your results. For either higher opt-in rates. Or greater sales conversion.

The key to split testing is to focus on just one variable at a time. This variable can be to compare headlines, pricing, offer, or even design of the landing page. You simply designate the current version as the control and send a certain percent of contacts in your funnel to the “test page(s)”. When one “test page” results beat out the control, then it becomes the new control.

Fatal Marketing Sin #7: Not Investing in a Downsell Campaign
As much as 67% or more may abandon their shopping cart. Yet you can recapture over one-fourth of these lost sales with a downsell campaign.

A downsell campaign involves a series of messages to contacts who abandon the shopping cart. Each message contains a persuasive message with a link to a dedicated landing page with a special offer. What once was sales-lost, now becomes increased sales conversion.

In summary, executing any one of the above online marketing sins can kill your business. But when instead, you execute the strategies suggested, you can help your business grow. To help you achieve higher opt-in rates, increased sales conversion and greater ROI.

Marketing services by Jeff Traister can help you increase your sales conversion through automation and persuasive copywriting. He is a certified Internet marketing automation consultant and direct response copywriter.

 

Do You Make These 5 Marketing Automation Mistakes?

Marketing automation has become a vital tool for businesses of every size. It can help you gain and sustain a competitive advantage. Speed up sales results. Plus, enable you to engage more contacts with personalized messages sent at the right time. So you can build good relationships.

Yet not each marketing automation system is the same. In fact, very few have all the essential tools in one package of services. If so, that can cause you to integrate system parts from third parties that can cost you time and money, especially when things go wrong down the road.

That is why it’s vital to first know what a full all-in-one marketing automation system is all about.

Marketing automation is a server-based software that integrates different technologies.

4 Automation Technologies Most Vital for Marketing Campaigns

First, it includes a CRM that allows you to collect, store and use information about your contacts. To be able to segment your contacts by custom fields and tags, behavior – such as opening emails and clicking on links, plus purchases.

Second, it includes an automated messaging system for emails, text, postcards and tasks. This allows you to send each message to contacts based on when they opted in, a date, behavior, purchase and more.

Third, it has eCommerce functionality. It integrates order pages with a form and payment gateway for one-click purchases. Plus it can allow you to integrate with a shopping cart if you prefer. Most of all, it can automate processes based on successful or failed transactions, subscriptions, trial periods, payment plans, coupons and more.

Fourth, it must have a campaign builder that enables you to take each contact on a personalized journey with measurable results. This allows you to create multiple campaigns for opt-in, sales, upsell, downsell and retention.

A marketing automation system such as one by Ontraport can provide additional features. These include marketing tracking to help you see which ads, landing pages and emails are generating the most cost-effective results. Affiliate marketing and membership site to help you boost the number of customers and sales. Landing page and form builder to enable you to design professional looking sites in minutes. And a lead router and scoring system to help you and your sales team follow up leads and convert them into customers.

Three key benefits of a marketing automation system are that you can customize it for your business. You can have multiple marketing campaigns at the same time that operate 24/7. Plus you can automate processes specific to contacts along their journey. But there are also marketing automation mistakes you can make along the way.

Marketing Automation Mistake #1: Sending eMails to Contacts Who Did NOT Opt-in
Marketing automation involves permission based emails. That means you send emails to contacts who give you permission to send them information. You can get permission when each contact opt-in to your system. However, importing a list or manually adding contacts to your marketing automation system is a violation of SPAM rules. If you do this you can compromise the delivery of emails even to those whom give you permission.

Marketing Automation Mistake #2: Not Maintaining a Database of Active Contacts
Even after you get a contact to opt-in, you must keep them active. That means, you must continually send them emails with relevant content to engage with at least once per week. Otherwise, they may forget you and not open the few emails you send. Over time, they can become less engaged, diminishing email delivery of your entire database. A re-engagement campaign is an effective method to get non-engaged contacts to interact with your emails again. You get these contacts to tell you if they’d like to remain on your list or opt-out. So you can maintain a consistent and clean contact database.

Marketing Automation Mistake #3: Focusing on the Wrong Metrics
Marketing automation allows you to measure the results of your campaigns. This includes opt-ins, sales conversion, email open and click link rates, landing page visits, sales, ROI and more.

However, focusing on the wrong metrics can cause you to misinterpret the true results. For example, you may have two campaigns where one has much higher open rates and lower click rates. Yet when you calculate click to open rates you can see an entirely different result. Before starting each campaign, it is vital to know the metric you seek to focus on to determine success.

Marketing Automation Mistake #4: Not Split Testing Campaigns
All campaigns differ by the type and number of contacts, content and more. Split testing campaigns is the key to finding what works right. But the key to split testing is to test just one variable at a time. Such as a headline, price, offer, design or target audience. The campaign that wins is the new control. Then you can test other campaigns against the control.

Marketing Automation Mistake #5: Not Having a Certified Consultant on Your Team
Marketing automation is both an art and a science. It requires a mix of technology know-how with direct response marketing expertise. Plus an objective mindset that is not biased toward the company or product. These are why it is best to have an independent consultant certified in the use of the marketing automation software on your team. To develop the strategy and build a custom automation system for your business. Plus, to train your team on using the system.

 

3 Ways to Get More Traffic to Your Online Store

An Introduction to Marketing Your Store Online

No matter how wonderful your products are, finding ways to encourage consumers to buy from your online store can be a challenge.

With so much competition out there – especially if you’re competing against a big retailer – means you need to always be focusing on ways to get more traffic to your online store.

Here are 3 ways to grow your online store:

1. Create Compelling Content

Publishing content that is valuable to your consumers is an ideal way to attract people to your website. Potential customers are more willing to buy from a retailer who posts genuine blogs, reviews and articles.

A study done by Gartner, a leading research and advisory company, found that 84% of millennials have used user-generated content to make a purchasing decision.

Plus, if you provide your readers with fresh content, they’re more likely to return to your website and potentially buy from you more than once.

2. Focus on SEO

When creating organic content your readers will enjoy, it’s essential to keep SEO in mind if you want to grow your online store. Organic traffic means visitors finding your website in a way that didn’t require you paying for that traffic to find you.

For example, if you have written a book on relationship advice you want to promote, you could create articles containing keywords such as “relationship tips” and “love advice.”

You also need to expand your SEO campaign to:

• Include keyword descriptions on product images

• Create a sitemap and submit it to search engines

• Write page titles and meta descriptions

You’ll have to do your keyword research first, however, and work on targeting keywords with low competition that still get enough traffic to make your efforts worthwhile. This is where an SEO expert can really come in handy.

3. Use Google AdWords

Google AdWords is a pay-per-click advertising program that can really help you generate traffic and leads.

The cost per click varies, but even an entrepreneur on a limited budget can afford to pay for at least a small campaign.

For an Impressions Campaign, you only have pay for an ad when someone clicks on the ad, calls your business or views your video, so it’s a cost-effective way to get more traffic.

There are a few ways to use Google AdWords:

• Show up in Google search results

• Promote banner ads in Gmail or websites

• Create a video ad for YouTube targeting your audience based on specific criteria

You’ll have to be skilled enough to manage your campaigns, measure results and make changes, or else it won’t help you grow your online store and could end up being very costly. If you’re not sure, seek out a professional who can help you grow your online store through paid traffic.

Like most marketing strategies, getting traffic to your online store takes continuous effort. Your competitors are likely focusing on the same techniques you are, so stay ahead of the game by measuring your results and changing what doesn’t work.

 

3 Success Stories You Can Learn From to Build a Profitable Online Store

Succeeding with online sales isn’t easy so we looked at

3 examples of entrepreneurs who made it work!

It could be as simple as the right product at the right time, but success isn’t always only luck alone.

Succeeding with an online store takes the right initiative and know-how. Whether you’ve got a store online already or you’re just starting out, these businesses learned the hard lessons already, so you won’t have to.

Running a service-based business and are unsure about e-commerce? Try our post: 3 Barriers to Break and Get Your Service Based Business Ready For E-Commerce

1. Envision Worship

Don’t let the name fool you, this isn’t ours! Envision Worship is a Shopify success story.

This is a small business selling power point templates specifically to the churchgoing market and they’ve gone international since starting.

This is a great example of a business who honed in on their target market and took advantage of the gap in the marketplace. Starting with nothing but knowing there as an existing need was a great place to start, but it didn’t ensure success.

The owner’s advice to anyone starting an online business? Start looking at Search Engine Optimization first. Hire a professional SEO agency to really hammer this and then factor in social media marketing.

Their first sale was through AdWords but they grew their business through social media marketing.

For this kind of business where your competition is slim to none, social media marketing is the key. Earning rank for low competition keyphrases will not be hard but you may find your audience isn’t searching for what you do if it’s something nobody else provides.

If you’re in a similar position, then learn from Envision and first know your audience clearly. Then find where they congregate online and join the platform with your brand-new store, ready to sell them something they’ll want but don’t even know exists yet!

2. Universal Yums

Universal Yums was not an overnight success but seemed to benefit from how common eCommerce became in recent years.

Launched in 2014 this site provides boxes of candy from various countries all over the world. They started with little-to-no-success until they found their golden goose: reddit.

After one of the two owners posting to a reddit thread about his business, he got 200 orders. From 1 reddit post!

They chugged along at a steady pace having established themselves to a point. While working full time jobs they kept at their fun side project.

Then over a year later, the other owner took to reddit for an AMA (as me anything). The volume of traffic that resulted is referred to online as the reddit hug of death. Within 30 minutes they had so many visits their website crashed!

Subscription based products are everywhere but this one worked because they kept at it until they found where their ideal users were. Once they discovered reddit was home to communities that love snacks and travel and purchase most of their products online, they knew they had struck gold. And now Universal Yums is a major operation making 7 figures with a full roster of employees.

Their advice? Apps, apps, apps. Make your processes easier with apps and you’ll save an enormous amount of time. Then find your audience and start playing catch-up with all your orders. And of course, use reddit.

3. Andie Swim

Andie Swim is a bathing suit service/product. It’s a unique business model that allows them to offer high-end quality swimwear at a much lower cost than any competitor. And it lets women try the suits on at home before committing to buy.

The owner only launched in the fall of 2016 and they’re booming.

The entire company was developed for the same reason many are: Melanie Travis, founder and CEO of Andie Swim, went looking for something and couldn’t find it. What she couldn’t find was a little different though. While there is no shortage of places for women to buy a swimsuit, the process is not ideal.

After asking her friends and family they agreed that going to a store, trying a bathing suit on in a change room, and buying it based on how you look in a cramped space with bad lighting is not fun.

Add to that the uncomfortable anxiety of the change room curtain or door flying open, and suddenly something that should be fun is a nightmare.

Her store met a need with both product and service. With Andie Swim you get to try your products on at home and can send them back without charge. Your credit card info is vaulted so you’re only charged if you decide to keep one.

The process has been refined to combat fraud and theft and they now have a major presence in the women’s swimwear industry.

They succeeded because the owner learned a valuable lesson: only hire qualified website development professionals.

She started with a freelancer and quickly regretted the decision when she found out all the apps she needed to streamline her business model weren’t compatible with what was built.

By moving her entire online store to a prefab model and hiring professionals, she was able to integrate the right apps for her marketing and her accounting.

That time management was the key to her success as it allowed her to focus on what mattered. By refining her user experience, she finally got into a groove and has been sailing ever since.

If you’re launching a new store or your existing store hasn’t caught on, try learning from these success stories. Find your audience, automate what you can with apps, and learn to market yourself to the niche you identified before you committed your time and money to your business.

Remember what Andie learned: only hire skilled professionals and you’ll save yourself a lot of grief.

Susan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.