15 Proven Affiliate Marketing Blogging Tips (That Actually Work)
One of the best ways to make money online is to use a method called Affiliate Marketing.
Compared to the other ways to make money online, it is relatively cheap to get started and takes only a marginal amount of skill.
Since there are hundreds of thousands of affiliate products out on the internet, you can choose to monetize your site very easily in any interest that you have!
Pretty good prospect, huh?
My favorite method to earn money with Affiliate Marketing is with blogging. In today's post, I will show you 15 Proven Affiliate Marketing Blogging Tips (that actually work).
These will not be the fly-by-night tips that you can and will read everywhere. But these tips will help you be efficient, save time, and DOMINATE the search engine rankings.
If you do not feel like reading, check out the video form of it below and please share on social media!
Word of Caution
The tips that we are about to outline has helped me make thousands of dollars online and are extremely powerful. If you are not interested in taking these tips and turning them into income for your business or your blog online, then you may as well leave right now; especially if you are not in the mood.
The great thing about the tips as well is that they stand the test of time. They will work now as well as years into the future.
The secret is to give Google what they want. If you do that, then they will provide you with what you want, which is traffic and traffic leads to money.
Always remember traffic = money! (that is going to be our mantra today)
So if you are ready to take your online business to the next level, check out and implement the following 15 tips and you can thank me later.
1. Use short URL's
One of the worst mistakes you can do is to allow WordPress to create your URL.
In WordPress, the live editor will automatically create your URL to whatever the title tag is for the post.
This is not ideal, especially when you are trying to rank for competitive keywords.
For example, if you are trying to write a blog post entitled, "Top 10 Best Baseball Gloves for Left-Handed 10-Year-Olds", WordPress will make your URL, "yoursite.com/top-10-best-baseball-gloves-for-left-handed-10-year-olds".
That URL sucks... really, really bad....
A few things to look for when deciding on a URL:
- Use the shortest version of your blog post as much as possible
- Include your root keyword in the title
- think of something that is easy to remember
Google has gone on record to say that they prefer shorter URL structures.
Google prefers it because when it comes to duplicate (or very similar) content, they will use the website with the more succinct URL to display to Googler's on the web.
Easier to Remember
Another reason why it is good to use shorter URLs is that it is easier to remember.
Put yourself in the shoes of your loyal readers.
It is much easier for a regular reader of yours to remember an individual page like "yoursite.com/best-baseball-gloves" rather than the insane alternative mentioned above.
There is a fine line between optimizing for search engines and just being plain ugly to see.
Give the Google search bots credit that they can read and know how to deal with your content. Also always optimize for keywords, looks, and memorability.
Easier To Update Content
A final reason why using short URLs are always a great idea is that it makes updating content easier.
Using the example above, if you have a post that outlines the best baseball gloves, you can update that post year after year (assuming you do not include the year in the title).
Google search absolutely, positively loves aged content that is still relevant because it provides value and is proven to be a valuable commodity for different keyword results.
You keep your URLs shorter, and you will see a massive increase in traffic to your site over time as your site ages and gains authority on the web.
Articles with Short URLs tend to rank better than those with really long ones.
2. Use Keywords with Commercial Intent
This may sound a little backward since we just established that traffic = money.
That is still true, but a more accurate statement would be that TARGETED traffic = money.
Keeping with the baseball gloves example from earlier, if you target the keyword, "what are baseball gloves," the chances of converting someone to a customer from that keyword is be pretty slim.
That is just an informational type topic or keyword.
However, if you target something with more commercial intent like, "best baseball gloves" then the searcher is looking for specific information and is more likely ready to buy.
Chapter 4 of Brian Deans Ultimate SEO guide, breaks down beautifully what to look for in a keyword with targeted commercial intent.
You want words that contain, "buy", "discount", "deal", "best", etc...
You CAN get traffic by targeting keywords with less commercial intent, but those people are not deep enough in the Customer Decision Making Process to have a good chance at converting to a customer.
Learn more about how the Customer Decision Making Process works right here.
As an example, I once had a website that was getting outstanding traffic but all in all, I was only making a few hundred bucks from the posts that were getting all the traffic.
Sure I was making money, but it was not what it should be with the amount of traffic that I was getting.
Fast forward to another post on the same website that includes a keyword with significant buying intent mentioned above. That page with roughly the same amount of traffic was now getting me a few thousand dollars a month.
That is 1000%+ increase.
Do you see the value in using keywords with commercial intent?
We are not saying to avoid targeting good information keywords, but what we are saying is understand that going for keywords that attract people earlier in the buying process will result in more traffic, but fewer sales.
3. Link out to other Authority Resources
This is a big one.
However, most of you may think that this is counterintuitive.
I mean, why would I want to link to places that send people OFF of my site?
You have to look at the bigger picture.
The entire point of your website or affiliate niche site is to provide an answer to someone's question.
If you provide that value and answer a question for someone, they are more likely to trust you and buy from you.
You see the reciprocity principle there?
Provide value, and they will buy from you.
Too many times, especially with newer bloggers, want to optimize for keywords and spam a site with affiliate links.
That... is... totally... wrong, and will hurt you in the "short" and "long" run.
It is OK to link out to other valuable resources. Remember the point of you blogging is to help people!
Build Up Your Sites Trust
Another reason why you would want to link out to authority resources is that the Google Gods will smile upon you and build up trust in your site.
If Google trusts your site, they will serve it up more frequently than a site that is trying to spam people searching on Google.
As your site trust rises, your site authority increases, which makes it easier for you to rank for more and higher traffic keywords.
Another reason that I forgot to list in the video for being a good reason to link out to Authority resources is that backlinks will naturally come your way. You also open yourself up to people taking advantage of the skyscraper technique.
Allow me to explain...
If you link out to a good to an average resource to help you support an argument, if someone comes along and tries to top the content that you linked to, they will likely contact you in their outreach and ask you to replace the average content with their better content.
That is a pretty big deal.
Since you are linking to an authority resource in the first place, you are passing 'link-juice' to the site (assuming you do a dofollow link).
That passing of the link-juice helps to build authority on your site.
So do you get the idea why it is such a good idea to link out to authority resources?
It simply opens you up to many opportunities to get more traffic.
If you do not link out to other resources, then your site is just there taking up space. It will help a few people, but not as many as it possibly could because you missed this crucial component to improve your SEO.
4. Use Wikipedia for Content Ideas
Wikipedia is truly a site that is one of its kind in today's present group of legitimate aggregate site.
Aggregate sites like this simply do not exist anymore.
But there is an excellent reason why Wikipedia is still around.
They know how to provide content to searchers.
One of the main ways that they do it is by having nice, long content on each one of their pages.
(This will become more clear in #6 below.)
But anyways, you can take advantage of the thorough research that Wikipedia does by checking out the pages in which they link to within their article.
For example, if you are on Wikipedia looking at their page talking about baseball gloves, you will notice the links to other resources to explain stuff like, "baseball," "leather gloves," "handedness," "batter," etc...
The reason that these pages exist is that Wikipedia uses the insane amount of traffic that they do get to answer every question imaginable about a subject.
You can harness and use that information.
For a site about baseball gloves, those are great examples of content that you can use on your site. Those links are there for a reason... people are searching for those topics.
Steal Those Content Ideas
Another tactic you can take from Wikipedia is to check out there "Contents" section. (red arrow in the image above). It is like their table of contents with clickable links to jump to those particular sections of the page.
These topics are broken down well because Wikipedia has done the testing to know that those are the main idea of the topic that most people search for and ask the most!
Again... use that information to your advantage and create similar pages or categories on your site. I cannot stress enough that these pieces of content work and are there because people are searching for them.
If people are searching for them, then there is traffic.
And what is our mantra? Traffic = Money (for those of you paying attention, Targeted Traffic = Money)
So use the information available at Wikipedia to propel your site and provide answers to questions that people are asking.
5. Optimize Your Title Tag for Click-Thru Rates
This one has a bit of a thin line and is the cause of a lot of debate when it comes to SEO.
Should you optimize your title tag for "SEO" or for "Click-Thru Rates (or CTR)?" (If you are unsure what a CTR is, check out this definition.)
From our testing, optimizing for CTR is way more important than optimizing just for keywords and SEO.
To prove this, Google a phrase like, "how to make money online."
You will notice that of the ten organic results, only 3 of them have that exact match keyword in either their title tag or meta-description.
Because Google has surmised that those pages that appear have the absolute best results for the keyword "how to make money online." So notice that regardless of if the keyword is in the title tag or not, these pages are still ranking.
A big reason for this is that people are clicking on these pages more than any other. With the CTR higher for that content, it slowly raises to the top.
Go ahead, test it out on other keywords.
Are you back?
So I hope you see my point.
So, naturally... how do we optimize for CTR?
How to Optimize for CTR?
There are a number of ways and here are a few:
- Use Parenthesis in your titles
- Use Brackets in your titles
- Use numbers in your titles
- make bold statements
- leave an information gap that has to be filled by clicking your result
All these ways are things you can do to increase your CTR.
"Always Be Testing"
A final thing that I want you to keep in mind about CTR is to test.
Write blog posts and see how your readers respond.
If they like numbers in their posts, include numbers! If they do not, then think of something else.
But, in a nutshell, "Always Be Testing."
6. Write Long Authoritative Content
If you have made it this far into the article, you are no doubt in for the long-haul.
But this kind of content is an excellent example of long, authoritative content.
The goal of this post, and others like it, are so that you can get the ultimate answer to your question.
So I will strive to answer every question regarding blogging tips under the sun.
There are massive benefits to this:
- Separates you from the pack
- Rank for More Keywords
- Increases dwell time on your site
- establishes you as an authority
I mean, do you need any better reasons than that?
Let's Break Them Down.
Long content separates you from the pack because you are providing content that answers every question imaginable about a topic.
There are a lot of places online that preach to go for 800 or 1,000 words per article.
That is a good number to shoot for... but if everyone is doing that, how are you separating yourself?
Create content that is so far and above better than what is already out there. With greatness like this, Google cannot help but make you number 1 in the rankings for your targeted keyword.
Write something that deserves to be number 1. That will help you stand out in a sea of sameness.
Rank for More Keywords
Another benefit is to Rank for more keywords.
A post that is 1,000 or less can rank for dozens of keywords.
A post that is 3,500+ or more can rank for hundreds.
The more keywords you rank for, the more traffic you will get and the more opportunity you have to be found in a search.
Do not be afraid to punch out a 4,000+ word article that may take you a few days to complete. If the keyword you are targeting is important enough and you know will provide you with good targeted traffic, then writing massive content like this will work out for you in the long run.
The caveat is to do this for keywords that get traffic and are worth writing huge posts.
You are trying to outrank what is currently ranking and set the bar.
Keyword Difficulty Strategy
So before targeting a keyword, do a search on it and see what results are currently coming up for it. See what is presently ranking and try to figure out why they rank at a glance.
Then when you are putting your content together, you will know what you need to do to out-best the competition.
Increase Dwell Time
Increasing dwell time on your site is always a good thing. By writing long, authoritative content, it will naturally take a lot longer to read every word.
If the dwell time on your site is high, that is a clear indication to Google that people are getting to that site and loving the content. Thus, Google will push it out to more people effectively increasing your search rankings.
Be The Authority
Finally establishing your site as an authority in a particular niche helps in a big way for potential customers to find your site.
Your goal is to make your site synonymous with your niche.
Be the first place people think of when they think about your particular niche.
You do this by killing it in content marketing and being the ultimate go-to when people are interested in your subject.
Ironically, this portion of the post happens to be one of the longest, but it is to help exemplify why long content is crucial for your affiliate marketing campaign.
7. Use Portent.com Title Generator for Ideas
This is a fun tool.
To help with number 5, this tool will give you great content and title ideas.
Just for fun here are a few regarding baseball gloves that I found pretty hilarious.
"16 Ways to Become the MacGyver of Baseball Gloves"
"Why Baseball Gloves Are More Tempting than A Cinnabon"
"What the World Would Be Like if Baseball Gloves Did Not Exist"
I would not particularly use any of those just because it does not match the tone of my site, but depending on your niche and your readers this could be some delicious ideas.
There is no such thing as writer's block in this world with the tools that we have available.
These titles are also useful because they will help your CTR for your keywords.
Have some fun with it and let me know your favorite ones below in the comments.
8. Use Contextual Links Within Your Content
Ok, so you will have to stay with me on this one.
First, let's define a contextual link.
A contextual link is a link within a line of plain text. Like this.
So how are these so useful?
Have you ever heard of a thing called, "banner blindness"?
I hadn't heard of it before either a while ago.
But the principle behind the concept is that people tend to ignore big flashy buttons online because their real point of being on a website is to find the answer to their question, not be shown advertisements.
Knowing this tidbit of information can help you and me as online marketers to increase the clicks to our offers easily by placing the links in the text of your content.
Sound too good to be true, huh?
Well, it isn't.
I am not saying that big Call-to-Action buttons are dead (maybe on life support), but people, by and large, are not seeing them.
So use that information to your advantage and work around it.
Personally, I notice an increase of almost 10%-15% when I use contextual links in conjunction with banner ads.
Those clicks to the offer have increased my sales.
Again, I implore you to test it out and see what works for your audience.
Contextual links get clicked 10-15% more than annoying and flashy banners and buttons
9. Be Unique
Hate being creative?
So do I.
But being a creative blogger is not as hard as you may think.
Use this little tip that I use to get the creative juices flowing and help you to stand out.
Power Blogging Tip:
Most niches have a top 5 or top 10 products that people will generally buy. For example, with internet marketing, a typical purchase that most of us marketers invest in is an email autoresponder or keyword research tool.
The same can be said about common practice in our niches. "Best way to do this, best way to do that..."
So think of the top things that you would put in those types of posts for your site.
Now throw them out.
I'm serious, trash it altogether.
Now think of the 11th to the 20th best thing in your niche.
This may take some time.
Got your list?
Now make your blog post.
How did you do?
I bet you just put together a Top 10 list that not many other people are highlighting.
Congratulations, you were just creative, and you have a shiny new blog post that is different from any other out there.
All it took was a few more minutes of thinking, and there you go.
This is a tip that has helped me through the years be unique. Now you can do it.
Now I am not suggesting that you shouldn't make the typical Top 5 or Top 10 in your niche type posts, but if your goal is to stand out truly, do something that no one else is doing.
To summarize for the sake of my list takers out there:
- Think of the top 5 or top 10 tips or items in your niche
- Throw them out
- Now think of 5 to 10 more
Short.... simple... sweet.
Let's move on.
10. Be Thorough
This one is similar to number 6, but the point if a little different.
Being thorough means that you are going to cover every subject imaginable for a topic.
An important rule to remember here is to write about topics, not just keywords.
When you write about a topic, you are endeavoring to cover every inch of the subject possible.
Not sure how to do this?
Power Blogging Tip:
Every time you write a sentence, imagine someone is asking you, "Why?" or "so what?"
Let's do an exercise.
Let's say we are again writing about baseball gloves and we have a blog post idea ready to go.
We start off with a sentence saying, "baseballs are very important when catching a baseball."
Now imagine someone asking you, "why"?
You answer by saying "it is important because it helps protect your hand."
You write, "It protects your hand because the average ball that is hit back at you can be traveling at upwards of 100mph!"
I could go on, but I hope you see the point by now.
By continuing to drill down and cover the minutia of a subject, you are in essence being as thorough as possible.
Benefits of Being Thorough
Being thorough has plenty of benefits:
- Establishes you as an authority
- Increases dwell time
- Helps you write long content
- Helps your readers answer every question they have on a subject
- Builds trust with your readers
See the point?
Always ask 'why' (or 'so what?') and you will still have something to on which to write.
Word of Caution:
Don't overdo it.
Do not be overly wordy just for the sake of it.
Break down the subject to the point that a reader will finish the article and feel satisfied that they got every possible answer to their question in one place.
There is a thin line between long, authoritative content and being unnecessarily wordy. So do what you think is best for your readers and dominate your niche.
Be sure that readers fill full and like they have learned something after they have read your post.
11. Utilize Google Search Console
This right here is what can and will change your world online.
Did you know that most online affiliate marketers do not even use the Google Search console?
People think it is too complicated.
First of all, it is not complicated.
But even if it was, the type of information you get from it is well worth the sacrifice of you learninig how to use it.
There is a wealth of information that can be found there, but from a blogging tips standpoint, I will tell you the best use of the free tool.
Identifying Keywords You Are Missing Out On
How does it do that?
Google Search Console will show you every word your website or an individual page currently ranks for and where it ranks.
So let's say that you wrote that huge, authoritative "best baseball gloves" post. In the post, you casually mention "these are good baseball gloves for lefties as well."
You go check out your Search Analytics and see that you are ranking on the 2nd page for the keyword "best baseball gloves for lefties."
This is powerful information.
What you can do for this particular situation is now go back to your original "best baseball gloves" post and add a section to the post completely dedicated to the keyword "best baseball gloves for lefties".
Now your post went from casually mentioning that keyword to having an entire section dedicated to that keyword.
Guess what will happen over time? (maybe 2-3 months)
You will almost assuredly notice a bump in traffic to your blog post.
Go to your analytics, and you will likely notice that your huge post now jumped from page 2 to page 1 for the term "best baseball gloves for lefties".
So you have just increased the rankings and traffic to your page by making a simple tweak. It is only possible because you used the information that is given for free over at the Google Search Console.
So go out and take advantage of this free tool.
For example, in a recent video from Backlinko.com, Brian Dean mentions that he gets tens of thousands of hits per day to his website as a whole.
You know how many blog posts Backlinko has? 300? 200? 100?
Yes, at the time of this post, Backlinko has 37 total posts on their blog.
The reason the site has been so successful is Dean thoughtfully goes after the right keywords and optimizes the content for keywords even after it is posted.
This is a hack that you should be using.
Word of Warning:
If you have not used the Google Search Console before after you attach it to your site and do the ID verification, you will need to wait a few days before you start seeing results in the graphs.
So be patient, this free tool will start spitting out golden nuggets to you in no time.
12. Set Realistic Goals
It is essential to set goals, but more important to set realistic goals.
Shooting for the moon is noble, but if you end up failing, you may discourage yourself to the point that you will not try again.
That is what you want to avoid.
Entrepreneurship is hard.
The ebbs and flows of business happen regularly. So you need to have a certain stubbornness to keep pushing until you succeed.
How to Set Realistic Goals
So before you start, set short and long-term goals for yourself and your business. Have a monthly goal, quarterly goal, six months goal and yearly goal.
Then go for it. See what happens.
If the time comes and you did not meet your projections, do not get discouraged.
Figure what you