So you want to make money by building a website that allows users to compare products but you don’t know where to start. Following these steps will help you choose a niche market, select the right affiliate marketing programs and help you setup the website tools you will need in order to be successful.
You may have a great idea for an affiliate marketing website but have no idea where to begin. Choosing a niche market and signing up with an affiliate marketing website like “Commission Junction”, “Share A Sale” or “Amazon” is only the first step; building and maintaining your website is where 95% of your time and energy will be spent if you hope to make money over the long term. One of the best platforms that you can consider when choosing an affiliate is if has the power to deliver quality results like YouTube. YouTube lists a bunch of reviews about different products for comparison.
Before you begin, if you don’t already have an idea of what products you want to offer then I strongly recommend you do the following. First, sign up with two or three affiliate marketing marketplaces like “Commission Junction”, “Linkshare”, or “Share a Sale”. In choosing your niche product market, focus on a specific product category like “women’s shoes” versus a broader category like “women’s clothing” so that your website will rank higher in the search engines for your products and your customers will be more likely to recognize you as a trusted source for these products.
After selecting your website product niche, choose affiliates that offer the highest commission rate, low refund rate and offer performance incentives. Most of the time you will have to apply to that affiliates program to receive their product links and in some cases you may have to already have a complete and relevant website to get approved. For those affiliates that require an existing, relevant website, wait and apply to their programs until after you have your website built and you already have products listed from your pre-approved affiliates.
Now that you have your niche product market, are registered with 2 or 3 affiliate marketing companies and have affiliate product links to display you now need to build your website.
Chose a unique but relevant domain name. A domain name is the “www.yourwebsitename.com” and usually reflects your product niche. You can lease domain names from companies such as GoDaddy.com, Yahoo and Network Solutions from anywhere from $3 to $15 per year.
Your website will need to be hosted on a server and this is accomplished through purchasing a “website hosting package”. You can lease website hosting from the same companies that you leased the domain name at a cost of $6 to $300 per month depending on how much bandwidth and storage you need. For starters I would recommend buying the cheapest hosting package as it will often provide enough space and bandwidth for at least the first year.
Design and build your website from scratch using image editing tools like Adobe Photoshop or Fireworks and an HTML editor like Adobe Dreamweaver or Microsoft Frontpage. If you don’t have the necessary web development skills you can purchase a website template (pre-built design and layout) that fits your product niche by doing a search for “Website Templates” and selecting a pre-built template from one of the websites listed. Prices for stand-alone website design range from $50 for an as-is template to $3000 for a totally unique and custom designed template. 95% of the time the more affordable “as-is” template will meet your needs and will only require minimal changes by you of your website name and product information.
Now that you have your domain name, website hosting and website, all that is left to do is begin copying and pasting the links and images from your affiliate marketing program onto your website. Listing the best deals on your home page (not only in price but also in commission to you) and the bulk of the products on your sub-category product pages. Updating your homepage regularly with the top products is key to keeping your website current, gaining top rankings by search engines, and growing a repeat customer base.
Much more can be said about the best ways to market and display your affiliate products through keywording and proper SEO techniques. Learning more about Search Engine Optimization and Search Engine Marketing will help you market your website and grow your customer base effectively which, in turn, will help you earn more money.