Affiliate Marketing Samples: 4 Types of Products to Promote
Till now you must have walked through the process of becoming a successful affiliate marketer. Now let’s step through some real-world affiliate marketing program samples, walking through four different types of products you can promote & make a tidy profit.
Usually, most of your affiliate income will come from one or two “ringers” — core products that just almost everyone in your audience needs & which also return a good commission.
As you progress, you can add complementary products to round out your offerings & help your audience in new ways, but identifying your core earners is essentially the very first step.
Option #1: Digital Downloads
Digital downloads are online resources that your readers can access immediately, without having to wait for a package to come in the mail (opposite in the case of physical goods).
They could be in the form of audio or video files, PDFs, ebooks or even links to webpages where the content exists online.
Books or eBooks — Books that are either self-hosted on your merchant’s website or downloaded from Amazon, iBooks or other online sellers.
Software — Downloadable programs, games, apps, plugins & cloud services.
Mobile applications — Hundreds of apps that are available on the iTunes Affiliate Program & other mobile app many of them are related to affiliate networks.
Music, movies, TV shows & more — Entertainment media delivered through Amazon as well as the iTunes Affiliate Program & others.
- Digital downloads are a simple way to get started & help your audience with popping problems.
- No overhead costs related to production, shipping or storage.
- Your buyer can access & start benefiting from their digital product immediately.
- Many ebook, software or other download products are comparatively inexpensive. You’d have to sell a lot of them to make a significant amount of money.
Do it! But expect higher earnings from other options on this list.
Option #2: Online, Hosted & Professional Services
When it comes to selling services as an affiliate, it’s necessary to concentrate on those which will be accessible to your entire audience no matter where they’re located (as opposed to service providers who serve local customers only).
In other terms, don’t let your earning potential be restricted because of the geographical aspect.
Your best bet is to represent online, hosted, or professional service providers you’ve worked within the past & possess full confidence in.
Examples of professional services:
- Designers (99 Designs, Zazzle, Designmodo)
- Creative businesses (John Melley Voice Overs & production, Media Content Advantage, Music Radio Creative)
- Content marketing services (Sprout Social, Hootsuite)
- Membership sites (Serious Bloggers Only, Digital Marketer, Freelance Writer’s Den)
- Analysis or consulting services (Questia, Snow Consulting, Touchstone Research Store)
- Accounting, finance, or judicial advice (as permitted by law) (Find Legal Forms, Motif Investing, Greatland)
- Niche specialties – travel, tourism, pop culture, nightlife, crafts/artisans (Pet Care Supplies, zChocolat, Silvercar)
Examples of online/hosted services:
- Website platforms (Wix, Squarespace)
- Lead generation services (Thrive, Elementor)
- Email service providers (AWeber, Constant Contact)
- Website services (e.g., hosting, anti-spam, security, etc.)
- Media (Wistia, Vimeo, Telestream, various WordPress plugins)
- Course platforms (Zippy Courses, Ruzuku, Teachable)
- Virtual Assistant or customer service support (Zendesk Partners program, VA Affiliates, TempsASAP)
- IT support, cloud-based storage, backup, security or other technical services based on monthly subscriptions
- It’s easy to become a service affiliate & it helps your audience manage important tasks that require specific expertise.
- There’s likely a higher earning potential than from digital downloads because services are usually offered at a higher price point.
- Many hosted services will offer a recurring commission – meaning you’ll get paid for as long as the customers you refer continues to use the service.
- Some of your personal favorite professional service providers (ones you have experience with) might not have affiliate programs in place.
Do it! Especially if you can find an excellent service provider who can potentially help nearly everyone in your audience at one time or another & who can be a strong, steady income generator.
Option #3: Online Courses
Online courses are an essential subset of digital products, particularly for bloggers & their market is huge. They’re so famous that they deserve a separate category on this list.
Online courses exist on any topic, your mind can think of. They range in price from free to thousands of dollars, with higher-priced programs promising big results for students.
- My Garden School
- Satisfied Parent, Happy Kids – Quit worrying & Yelling & Start Connecting
- Suze Orman’s Personal Finance Online Course
- Courses are one of the best ways to help your audience achieve a goal that’s important to them or move past a roadblock that’s been keeping them stuck. You can convey incredible value with little effort on your part.
- Courses are often offered at a higher price point than other digital products, so your earning potential from each affiliate sale is higher.
- Courses are popular. It should be easy to find other influencers in your niche whose courses can help your readers.
- You’ll have to spend time working through & reviewing courses to make sure that they deliver on their promises (to protect your reputation).
Do it! Encourage & help your readers in a big way & earn big at the same time.
Option #4: Ecommerce Stores
If you decide to promote physical products on your blog, your best bet is to choose high-quality, distinctive products that will appeal strongly to your specific audience.
Avoid commodity products that your readers can buy anywhere — the commissions are so small you won’t make worthwhile money unless you can drive tremendous traffic to your site.
Commissions on eCommerce products are usually fairly low because of the overhead of production costs, storage costs, shipping, etc. So, unless you are plotting to build a large shopping site, physical products will probably be a very small portion of your blogging affiliate income.
However, if you have a favorite tool of your trade, a must-have gadget that will make your readers’ lives easier, or a high-quality recommendation that your sure people will be thrilled with, go ahead and offer it.
You’ll build goodwill even if you don’t make a lot of money.
- Niche shopping — Product Review Mom (parenting), Compost Mania (gardening), Roemer’s Workshop (hobbies), Pinch of Yum (food)
- Tech or gadgets — Engadget, Gizmodo, Craziest Gadgets
- Once you have a finished or rather say a well-furnished blog, companies may approach you & offer you free product in exchange for a review. (You should always reveal this, as it could be seen as a conflict of interest.)
- If you can afford to purchase products on your own to test them, you’ll be seen as a truly objective reviewer.
- Commissions from eCommerce stores are usually a lot lower because of the overhead, so you’ll have to sell a whole lot more product to make a decent income.
- Purchasing products so you can review them before promoting them can be a little expensive.
Offer physical products only under certain circumstances:
- They’re directly related to your blog topic & something your audience absolutely needs.
- They’re not commodities. Specialized & distinctive products from eCommerce stores reflect better on you, boosting your reputation & credibility.
You should now have loads of ideas for types of products you can represent.
The Bottom Line on Affiliate Marketing
That dream you’ve had of making passive income isn’t just a silly fantasy.
It’s a completely achievable reality. Sure, it’s not as easy as pushing a magic button, but with a little knowledge & persistence, you can definitely do it & even turn it into an online business.
Once you’ve gained a respectable following, affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to make money blogging & the best news is that it’s so easy to get started. All the steps for starting an affiliate marketing business are spelled out in this & the previous blog.
Simply identify the one big thing everyone in your audience needs to reach their goals & start there.
Choose an ultimate digital product from an online business you truly believe in. Share it. Tell the story of your successes. Provide lots of valuable content that helps & educates your readers & take care not to be too salesy.
Be honest & transparent. Nurture the trust that readers place in you.
And finally, be patient.
All your efforts will pay you back with that sweet “cha-ching” of affiliate commissions being deposited into your bank account.