Now, on to the good stuff. Of those companies that I mentioned, all but Google has an affiliate program. For example, PayPal pays $5.00 for every person who signs up. 340 000 x $5.00= $1 700 000. Interesting!
So, what can we do to make the most of this opportunity? Well, it’s easier than you would think. Obviously, trying to get traffic from people searching for eBay or PayPal would be very difficult but there are literally thousands of other companies that people search for. For example, I just checked the three best known British sports betting companies – about 20 000 searches are made each month on Overture for these companies.
I have noticed that without any effort whatsoever, I am actually getting a lot of traffic from people searching for company names and script names. This is because they are listed in my Affiliate and Script directories. An example of the process is – people search for a particular merchant, come to my affiliate directory, and click on the link to get to the merchant. Therefore, even though they have no interest in the affiliate program, I’m making money just by linking to merchants whose content is completely unrelated to mine.
Remember, this is without even trying. When I do try, I’m getting even more traffic. For example, I have a review of the FastClick ad network on my site. I get 10+ visitors each day from people searching for phrases that include the word fast click. That’s 300+ visitors per month, 15 000 per year. As you could imagine, due to the fact that FastClick pays a lifetime 5% commission on referred earnings, this is quite lucrative.
So, what do you need to do? Well, you probably already use affiliate programs in some form on your site – either as a major source of revenue or to make “backend” sales. I went for years just linking to them with banners, buttons, and text links. The odd short recommendation here and there proved to be the best way to get the most out of them.
The problem, from a search engine perspective, is that just linking to them from your site will generally not get your page up high in the search engine rankings. A link to merchant “Acme Corp.” just blends into the text on your page and is assigned no real relevance. Therefore, you should put up an individual page on your site for each merchant that you are an affiliate of. This page could just be a review of the products or services that they offer.
Just the fact that you have a content-rich page about a specific merchant will almost automatically get you traffic from the search engines (once you are listed). The main point is “content-rich”. Also, write it yourself, do not copy content from the merchant’s site. Why? Well, even if they let you copy their content (lots do), Google has ways of finding duplicate content. In fact, they will usually ban the page that they believe is less important if the two have the same information on them. So, write it yourself.
Remember that if the merchant sells products that have gained recognition from the public, make sure you list their products.
If you already have a successful site, the search engines will actually view your “review” of a merchant as being important, and it is no harder to get that page into the top 10 listings than it is for any other page on your site.
Often, the difference between doing well and being truly successful online is just the ability to grab opportunities when they appear. You could find that spending just 10 minutes to set up a couple of new pages on your site could actually result in thousands of dollars in extra income each year.
Remember, there are closes to 600 million queries made on search engines each day – this is an opportunity! Don’t let it pass you by.