The number one piece of advice I can give to anyone interested in affiliate marketing is to have patience. This is a long-term investment and strategy.
I was talking to a young marketer recently and he was complaining about minimal traffic to his Amazon promotions. His seo-based site is only a few weeks old. It’s great that he’s asking for best practices but it’s not helpful that he expects immediate returns. I said, “Patience”. He responded, “That’s a good one, but something I don’t have. lol.”
Affiliates, Be Patient
If you are on the CPA side of the industry, which expands every year, you can spend money to make money. With that comes higher risk and a significant chance for epic failure and huge loss of money when the products don’t convert or the demand dries up suddenly. We work on the cost per sale side of the industry. Our affiliates use coupons, deals, reviews and other content related promotions. They build their sites out using SEO principles and often using datafeeds. These all take time to mature. Bloggers and other content producers build their audiences for years in order to participate in sponsored promotions with big brands. Anyone that loses patience and gives up after a month will never understand or experience the full potential of this channel.
Merchants, You Be Patient, Too
As I have stated many times, affiliate marketing is not the place to start sales, it’s a place to supplement them. Just as affiliates need to diversify their monetization efforts, merchants need a healthy ratio of SEO, email, retargeting, paid search, media buys, PR and overall branding for the majority of the traffic. An average mature affiliate program yields about 20% growth. That leaves 80% from other channels. Patience means continual testing and tweaking as well as working on multiple ideas at the same time. How many fish can you catch when you have more than one pole in the water? It might take time and different bait strategies, but something will eventually work. Then you try something new and refine the last strategy.