Affiliate income is a great way to add an additional income stream to your business with very little effort. It takes a little bit of work to get started, but once you've got it set up, you can mostly forget about it – apart from seeing the extra money in your bank account of course!
What is affiliate income?
Affiliate income is essentially you getting paid for promoting someone else's product. I'm sure you recommend books or products to your customers all the time; your favourite yoga mat, perhaps, or a set of weights you love to use. Now imagine that every time one of your customers purchased an item based on your recommendation, you got a commission – a percentage of what they spent. Pretty cool, huh? That's basically what affiliate income does. It's like an automatic referral bonus.
How does it work?
You can sign up to be an affiliate for a number of companies in a number of ways (I'll cover a couple of the most popular ones below). Once you're registered you'll receive a link or a code which is unique to you – this is how the company tracks the business you send them. Every time someone buys something via one of your affiliate links you get a little kick back. Percentages vary, depending on the company.
For example, Amazon gives a commission of between 4% and 10%, and some online course providers offer as much as 50%. Usually payments are made monthly but may also vary from company to company.
How to get started
First of all, you'll need to get registered on to some affiliate programs. I recommend you get started with Amazon, as they have a huge variety of products and their affiliate system is relatively easy to use.
You can also try ClickBank, which also has a wide range of products covering all industries.
Finally, look at complementary businesses in your field. Perhaps a local nutritionist is looking for affiliates for an online course that would go really well with your personal training programme. A Google search can throw up all sorts of interesting results here. Once you've found some likely candidates, reach out to introduce yourself and find out how you can register as an affiliate.
Once you've got yourself registered and you have your unique affiliate links, you'll need to add them to your website and content. Take a look at any existing resources pages or recommendations you have on your site and update those links! If you don't already have a resources section on your site then now is the perfect time to set one up. Pick out your favourite products – the ones that suit your business and that your customers will benefit from – and make a list. Don't forget to use your new affiliate links!
Promote, promote, promote! Once you've got your list of recommendations ready, make sure you tell your customers about it. Blog about it, talk about it social media, add it to your email signature and your newsletter, etc etc. Any time you recommend a product, make sure you use your affiliate link.
You could run a monthly feature on your blog where you write about the benefits of a specific book or product and link to it with your affiliate link. If you mention a specific product in a video class, make sure to use your affiliate link in the description. You could even make it an enticing extra feature for getting more people to sign up for your membership site!
It's a win-win, your customers get tailored recommendations to help them implement your fantastic lessons, and you get a little bump of extra cash.
Why not try it and see how much you can earn?