Affiliate marketers are always looking for ways to increase and improve both sales and commissions. The methods for carrying out these improvements is common knowledge with all of the necessary information being readily available online. Our article today will give a brief overview of one such method to show how easy it can be to implement.
Our chosen method, for this article, is all about Product Recommendations. It sounds quite simple and self-explanatory, but get this wrong and your online credibility and affiliate business could take a serious nosedive.
Let us assume that you have already built a list and that you regularly communicate with that list, offering tips, advice and information etc. Doing this builds trust and rapport with your customers. It's extremely important to have the trust of your client base; when your customers or visitors see you as an authority, your sales can really explode.
Since maintaining the trust of your customers and visitors is so important, you will want to make doubly sure that any affiliate product you promote is of the highest quality. This means that you will have thoroughly reviewed the product personally. In order to do this, you may be required to actually purchase the product or service being sold.
Now we all know that this may be impossible if the product in question is very large or expensive. Examples of this would be "white goods" or intangible products such as insurance and, of course, we should include very expensive items such as jewelry.
However, if the products were digital or low-value consumables such as ebooks or supplements then this would be less of a problem. Vendors will usually be quite happy to provide a sample, either free, at a reduced rate or as a refunded item on your first affiliate sale.
You have probably seen many examples of this online where a vendor selling a pdf ebook will give away the first couple of chapters as both a teaser and an example.
When it comes to product selection, nothing can replace you carrying out due diligence. The following are just some of the numerous ways this can be done:
Buy and review the product.
Gather and study all of the sales literature.
Delve into the online market forums for that product.
Set up your own product review blog with a Q & A section; very useful for gathering users views and comments.
Follow up on testimonials and endorsements for authenticity.
Customer service and support can be a goldmine for product information.
Go online and check out the competition, what do they say about the product.
As you can see there are numerous ways for reviewing a product and the above list is just a small selection. It's in you and your customer's best interest to provide as much information as possible about any proposed product. By doing this, you will maintain and enhance your authority as well as your credibility. Apart from all of that you will also make many more sales.
Don't be afraid to point out any shortcomings you may find in a product. Just make sure that if you really want to promote the product then any shortcomings will be more than offset by the benefits and features of the product. Your customers will certainly appreciate your candor if your review is impartial.
You may actually lose a sale by being totally honest and upfront but don't let that worry you. You are in this affiliate marketing business for the long term and you will be pleasantly surprised when prospects and customers keep returning to your blogs and emails because they trust you. This trust will eventually result in sales.
If you are still doubtful about spending all of that time and effort on product selection then let me give you an example of how some of the professional affiliate marketers go about it. The professionals are fully aware of what is required, but hedge their bets by setting up affiliate review pages on either their own sites or on shopping cart sites.
You may have seen such sites online e.g. let's look at the camping niche and the sub-niche of camping tents. They will have a review / sales page promoting numerous styles of a tent, supplying all of the manufacture's sales and technical information. Each product will have a separate and brief review outlining the products good points and suitability.
The really clever trick about such a review page is an affiliate can be seen as an authority in this niche by capitalizing on the expertise of all the individual vendor's on the page. To really capitalize on this, the affiliate will probably have lots of links to associated products, e.g. sleeping bags, which they also sell as affiliates.
None of the above information is high-tech or complicated; in fact, it is so basic as to be seen as common sense. Yet if you don't apply it then your affiliate business will probably never get off the ground.
You now have a few of my Affiliate Marketing success secrets. If you would like to learn some more then just head over to http://terrydeeonline.com/blog and get them with my compliments.