affiliate marketing

Affiliate Marketing – A Guide for Complete Beginners Part 3

Hello and welcome to part 3 of this 4 part series about affiliate marketing for beginners.

Great to have you join me on this affiliate marketing journey of discovery.

If you missed parts 1 and 2 of the series then as a beginner affiliate marketer I strongly suggest you go check them out first and then come back to this part 3 of the series.

Prefer to Listen Instead to My Dulcet Tones?

If you prefer to listen then here’s my podcast version BUT please dont forget to leave me your comments below – that’s the “lifebood of my business” and your feedback is always appreciated so much.

In part 1 we looked at a whole lot of critical things for affiliate marketing including “What Really Is Affiliate Marketing?” “How does affiliate marketing actually work?” and a whole lot more.

In part 2 we looked at “7 Key Reasons Why You Should Consider Affiliate Marketing”; “How Can I Make Money from Affiliate Marketing?” and “What Affiliate Programs Should I Select?”

In this part 3 we’ll cover:
How Best to Get Started as an Affiliate Marketer?
Two Different yet Successful Affiliate Marketing Strategies.

Let’s get started.

football1TEXTHow Best to Get Started as an Affiliate Marketer?

The following are the 7 essential steps to get started with your affiliate marketing business.

1.  What Market Niche is Right for Me?

So many people get this bit wrong and its not that hard!

Think about what you are interested in and NOT just the money potential of a particular target market.

You need to do some research here.

It doesn’t take long but it is critical to your success as an affiliate marketer.

Think about WHO your ideal target audience person would look like?

Think about WHERE the people in your niche would hang out online and go there?

Maybe they belong to certain social media groups or forums.


Watch this video that shows you how to use a great free tool called FAQFOX – this will help you discover what’s being talked about in forums.

Find out what are the major challenges, problems, “pain points”, issues being faced by people in the niche.

Can you relate to this market?

Do you understand the lingo?

Are there enough people looking for information that you can sell to them?

Pick a niche that enables you to sell products according to your area of interest.

2.  Starting Your Website

Before signing up with any company you need to start your own website.

I recommend you start with a wordpress blog and here’s a link that will show you all about this. It’s called “Free Beginner’s Guide to Successful Blogging”

Please note that many companies would want to see the status and content of your website before accepting you as an affiliate for their products. 

3.  Choose the Right Affiliate Programaffiliate marketing

Always, always, always research the affiliate marketplace BEFORE you make any decisions about which affiliate program (network) you are going to start with.

As a beginner just select one and become very familiar with it.

The affiliate programs or networks you select will depend a lot on the type of products that you are selling. As I mentioned previously different affiliate programs will focus on different items.

Some affiliate networks like Commission Junction mainly focus on selling website subscriptions and services while places like ClickBank have a focus on digital products like ebooks and software packages.

Sooner or later as an affiliate marketer you have to make a decision about which affiliate network is going to fit best into your chosen target niche.

For example if you have affiliate offers like advice about car insurance or health insurance then you’d use a lead based affiliate network to promote insurance quotes.

If your niche was the “make money online” niche then you’d look for affiliate programs that offered digital solutions to the challenges faced by people just like you trying get started online.

As always do some research and be aware that some affiliate networks are known for late payments and other bad business practices. Try not to learn these lessons from your own experiences.

4.  Signing Up for Affiliate Products

Depending on which affiliate program you selected, you may be also required to sign up with companies who are offering the particular affiliate products you want to promote.

After signing up you will receive a tracking link and from then onwards while promoting that company’s product, you will recommend that affiliate link to direct the consumer to the company’s website. 

Be aware that the companies you are seeking to get affiliate offers from might ask you for your website URL (this is your website address like

For your reputation and credibility it’s very important that you choose the right “merchant”

When you promote a product you are also promoting the person or the company who is behind the product so try to choose wisely.

Usually, companies that offer good customer service will have better customer satisfaction so try to stick with promoting their products.

affiliate marketing5.  Choosing the Right Products

As a beginner affiliate marketer be very careful here. It will be so eay to be completely swamped and confused with the range of different products you can offer.

Don’t make the classic mistake of deciding on a product and then go looking for someone to sell it to!



The time you spent researching your target market (your niche or target audience) is now going to pay off big time for you.

How you ask?

Well that’s an easy question to answer and one that very few beginner affiliate marketers bother about. 

The research you did was to focus on finding a VIABLE NICHE.

In other words where a group of people with a COMMON “PAIN POINT” who are also prepared to PAY to overcome, remove or avoid that “pain point” 

Once you know the “pain point” then all you need to do is search for the best solution.

This is a far better way than coming up with a solution and then to go searching for people who may have a need for that solution – you’ve just out the cart before the horse!

Avoid falling into this trap.

Its one of the major causes of affiliate marketing failures and it’s usually brought about because people are TOO LAZY to do the initial research.

Don’t be one of these potential losers. Promise?

You need to spend some time doing research on the products that you’re going to promote. Always keep in mind your target audience’s needs when assessing any products.

However, unlike your niche where you are focusing on a specific or small market, in your product selection you can expand the affiliate products you want to make and offer a wide variety of products or lead generating links when you’re marketing to readers.

Use some restraint here and don’t go trying to promote lots of offers. Simply go for just a couple of products that are very relevant to your niche.

If you are going to operate your affiliate marketing business using a blog (and I hope you are) then know that your readers will have broad based needs within your niche so you should try to appeal to every aspect of their need.

This means some of your readers may prefer an ebook solution to a particular problem whilst others may want software or video solution.

Whilst researching your products click on the “Gravity” or “Network Earnings” options on the affiliate program for all the stats on what products are selling the best.

[emvid btn_color=”green” btn_icon=”money.png” btn_url=”” btn_text=”Get Access To All The FREE Traffic You’ll Ever Need For Your Marketing” btn_size=”large” btn_pos=”undefined” redir_settings=”]

6.  Critical: Buy the Product FIRST

As mentioned before it’s just so important that you are familiar with anything you are going to promote as an affiliate marketer.

It can take some time to create our online reputation but only one stupid mistake to instantly ruin it!

You simply cannot give real information about a product if you have never used it?

When visitors come to your site or contact you looking for product information and you can’t confidently provide them with all the details then you’ve just lost a customer.

Not only that they are going to leave your website and probably never come back. Interested traffic is hard enough to get so don’t mess this bit up.

Buy the product and use it.

Get to know all there is to know all there is to know about it and never try to fake your way through a product review or an email response.

7.  Share Your Experiences with the Product   

Most successful affiliate marketers always relate their personal experiences with the products they are selling.

As a beginner affiliate marketer you can do exactly the same.

Share your experiences about how you uses the product and what difference did it make in your life. People love stories and always get inspired by the real life experience of others rather than just being asking to buy the product.

Two Different yet Successful Affiliate Marketing Strategies

affiliate marketing

As an affiliate marketer be aware that thousands of people, if not millions are trying to promote the same products as you.

To make money with affiliate marketing, you basically have 2 different strategies you can follow and each have their own pros and cons:

There are no “magical short-cut solutions” to making money online.

So stop chasing those “overnight success dreams” because that’s exactly what you’ll get – just a dream that puts no money into your bank account.

You can either –

Drive Free Traffic with Blogging: This is a proven strategy that takes time and patience.

Use the Paid Traffic Approach: This will definitely get you a quicker result but it’s still not an “overnight success” process.

If you advertise on different websites or use things like solo ads then this can be a faster method of driving traffic to your affiliate programs to make money, but it needs you to have money to invest.

Here’s a brief comparison of these 2 approaches

Let’s take a look inside each way and compare them to find the best one for you.

  1. Driving Free Traffic with Blogging

Assuming you’ve identified your target audience ( your niche) and their specific needs and wants then to drive targeted visitors to your blog (and or your product review posts and pages) you have to create valuable relevant content that is aimed directly at your chosen target audience.

You are reading a real life example right here as this series of posts is aimed fairly and squarely at my target audience – beginner bloggers and affiliate marketers.

affiliate marketingReach Out and Share

You then have to reach out to other bloggers in your niche who are ahead of your blog development and build relationships with them.

These other more established bloggers will be the ones who drive most of your free traffic to your blog.

This process of networking and engagement is very enjoyable but also extremely time consuming.

Make a note to come back and check these other blog posts that give you lots of ideas and tips about “getting engagement on your blog” and “How to create enthusiastic blog readers”

Many people will tell you that you also need to learn just a little bit about basics of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). This is all about driving organic (search engine traffic using keywords). It’s not a rocket science but it’s better to have some understanding about this.

Confession Time!

I know very little about SEO and the whole topic bores me to tears. That’s probably why for some time I had trouble getting very much organic traffic to my site.

The Product Review Approach

Many affiliate marketers create their content all around “product reviews”. Now I realize this works wonders for bloggers who are established with lots of credibility and traffic.

Many bloggers are providing excellent, honest reviews that are very much appreciated and accepted by readers. They are definitely a great way to promote your affiliate offers to your target audience.

Why Beginners Should Avoid Creating Product Reviews

Despite the success bloggers have with their affiliate product reviews I am suggesting (recommending even) that as a beginner affiliate marketer you should not try this approach.

You may not like this but you just have to accept that at this stage in your online experience (which basically equates to zero) you have no reputation, no knowledge and absolutely no credibility with anyone except you grandma if she ever visits your blog.

So why would any visitor to your blog (if they ever found it) bother to take any of your product reviews seriously?

They wouldn’t and I know this sounds harsh but it’s also the truth.

As a beginner blogger come affiliate marketer you have to earn your reputation and your credibility and this takes time and effort.

However, once you start to gain acceptance with your valuable blog posts then people will also start to trust you.

The amazing thing is that most people online are extremely skeptical but as well they are all looking for people they can trust.

As a beginner you can start to build your reputation for competence, credibility and achieve trust with  the value you give in your posts, your blog comments and in your emails to your list.

Yes, I strongly suggest you start building your email list as soon as possible.

For some more practical ideas about getting started online go here to get your copy of my free ebook called “10 Things You Should Know About Making Money Online”

Once you have earned the trust of your subscribers your affiliate marketing then becomes a heck of as lot easier.

Please don’t get any hangs up about being a beginner blogger because you now have the chance to avoid all the mistakes people like me and others have made.

Become a Giver Not a Takeraffiliate marketer

You’ll find many bloggers who are only too happy to share and help if they see you are genuinely trying to build your reputation.

When you give value, provide comments and ask genuine questions, people will notice you and respond.

So make it a daily action to reach out to others in your niche, leave them a valuable comment on their posts. You will grab people’s attention and this is the best way to start your networking actions. Learn to be a giver.

You’ll also need to spend time promoting your posts on social media using catchy headlines that create some curiosity to come and see what you have created.

Be active and spend some time every day promoting your posts as well as sharing on social media the posts you made comments on – this will definitely catch these other blogger’s attention.

[emvid btn_color=”green” btn_icon=”money.png” btn_url=”” btn_text=”Get Access To All The FREE Traffic You’ll Ever Need For Your Marketing” btn_size=”large” btn_pos=”undefined” redir_settings=”]

2. Use the Paid Traffic Approach

If you don’t have the willingness, time and knowledge to create a blog then you can promote your blog posts with paid advertising and advertise with popular networks.

This is the paid traffic route but it can provide you with very quick results.

There are many options like Facebook, Google Adwords or Bing where you drive traffic from these ads to a page about your affiliate offer that you have created.

Just remember this traffic is “cold” – they don’t know you, like you or trust you.

So sending just a few hundred of “clicks” won’t result in many sales. 

You need lots of traffic from websites to make this work but as a beginner affiliate marketer I’m also assuming (maybe incorrectly) that you also have limited funds available for advertising like this.

That’s why I am not recommending this strategy to you if you’re a beginner marketer.

For more details about the “paid traffic” option check out this video post called “Profitable Traffic Generation Methods Revealed”

That’s it for this part 3 of this 4 part series.

See you next time! But don’t miss Part 4, the last part in the series that gives you:

 “11 Massive Tips for Success as an Affiliate Marketer”

 It’s Your Turn

I know just how busy you must be so many thanks for taking the time to leave me your comments.

As a beginner affiliate marketer did you have trouble finding the right niche?
Do you already have a blog? If not, why not?
Care to share why you decided to become an affiliate marketer?
What have been your biggest challenges or struggles as an affiliate marketer?
What has really worked well for you as an affiliate marketer?
What were the key things you got from this post?
Would you like some help with your affiliate marketing?




Peter Beckenham

I'm an Aussie entrepreneur who lives and runs his online sales & marketing coaching business from a remote Thai village. I help small businesses to build authority, attract quality leads and generate sales If you enjoyed your visit with me then SUBSCRIBE TO MY TRIBE where you will get lots of tips, ideas and practical, down-to-earth information about how to make the most of your online business journey.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle PlusYouTube


  1. Affiliate marketing is a phenomenal entrance into internet marketing and SEO. It’s a great entrance into SEO if you can get your hands on relevant training. In this case, it’s essentially a shoe-in. For those that enter affiliate, its incredibly important to select the theme that you can relate to. Because you’ll be working with that product for the foreseeable future, you must enjoy it!! The best example is when someone uses their body transformation (imagine a woman who LOST 20 lbs on THIS DIET or THIS WORKOUT REGIMEN) to sell fitness. They even use their own photos and story. Good stuff there.

  2. Wow Peter!

    You have really done us all a great service here!I
    have definitely been educated in your excellent multi
    part series.

    You have caused my eyes to be opened extremely wide, in order
    to seriously consider some things about successful affiliate marketing,
    that prior to reading your excellent series, would have never dawned on me!

    Thanks bud, it’s been quite an education! And it’s really easy to see why so many
    newbie affiliate marketers fail!

    If they diligently apply the absolute pearls of wisdom you’re sharing, they’ll
    definitely be better off!Thanks!

    • Hi Mark and many thanks for your visit and great comment,

      The whole exercise of creating this affiliate marketing series was to help beginner marketers as much as I could.

      So I truly appreciate the feedback from someone with your experience – awesome mate.

      Hopefully more and more newbie marketers will discover this series of posts and implement what has been to me, a real labour of love.

      I have made so many mistakes on my affiliate marketing journey.

      So with this series I have tried my very best to show folks exactly what to do and what to AVOID so they can much more easily achieve the success they are seeking online.

      Thanks again Mark – you’re the man

      Best wishes from the remote Thai village marketer


  3. Fabulous explanation Peter,

    I love reading your posts. Not only because you pick good topics but also your writing style is sweet.

    I agree totally that newbies should not spend money on ads for low-priced affiliate offers. I’m experienced, and I don’t do it – the margins aren’t there.

    Organic is the way to go for newbies, and frankly they shouldn’t be overly consumed with making a sale in the near term. Rather, they should be doing the things that you’ve been doing – building an audience, getting engagement happening, etc.

    When they have the foundation in place sales will be easier to come by because of enhanced credibility. That is why blog commenting is so effective. Newbies can get themselves almost instant credibility with this strategy. (When I say ‘instant’, I’m talking 1-3 months, which is mighty fast compared to any other online method I know of.)

    Choose the right product is also vital. As you rightly say, the best way to do that is to buy it and take it for a test drive.

    Power to you Peter for helping newbie marketers cut through the clutter and come up with a straightforward and clear plan for the future.

    Brilliant stuff


    • Hello Kim and wow – I’m lost for words!

      Thank you so very much for your kind and supportive feedback on this 3rd post of the 4 part series for beginner affiliate marketers.

      Totally agree re the “organic” or free traffic option for newbie marketers. And yes list building is something they MUST get going right from the very start.

      If you’re timing is right Kim then 1-3 months is not very long at all to wait to obtain that all important “credibility” or authority status so important for really successful affiliate marketing.

      Way too many times I see beginner marketers selling all sorts of products.

      Many of these affiliate offers bear no semblance to each other (or their niche market).

      Actually I doubt if these newbie marketers ever bothered about identifying their niche – they just went on a “selling spree” that will end with very predicable results. Total failure and what is more interesting, these failures come as a real surprise to them because they don’t know any better.

      Hopefully more and more beginner affiliate marketers will find my series of posts and avoid making all these stupid, crazy mistakes.

      Thanks again for your awesome feedback mate

      Best wishes from the remote Thai village blogger come affiliate marketer


  4. Hi Peter,

    Great advice! Picking the right product that you will have fun with is essential. I am so glad you wrote to use the product first! I could never affiliate something I didn’t deem great to use. If I use it myself, and have good results, spreading the news with excitement and enthusiasm will work so well.

    I see some that kick out affiliate products once or twice a week. Now how can they possibly know it is a good thing? Hmmm makes me wonder sometimes.

    All your advice is spot on and I sure am glad you wrote this one.


    • Hi Donna and welcome back,

      I always so much appreciate you sharing your experience and expertise, especially in the area of affiliate marketing where you have done so well.

      Thanks for agreeing with me re usng the product first. Some folks simply chase the potential commissions by promoting products they have had no expereince with and to me this is unethical and simply asking for trouble.

      And Donna you’re so right. If you have used the product and achieved success with it then your promotion will not only be based on reality but also on genuine enthusiasm and excitement. What a winning promo combination that is!

      Thank you again Donna – and for any beginner marketers reading this then please understand you’ve just heard from one of the very best affiliate marketers online today.

      Best wishes from the remote Thai village blogger come affiliate marketer


  5. Hi Peter,

    Well done! #1 is the start. Pick the right niche. Follow your fun. Doing so builds your campaign on the right foundation. Being sales hungry and outcome hungry screws with your creative juices but doing marketing for the fun, not primarily the affiliate aspect of it, well that opens you to worlds of opportunities. Thanks for sharing!


    • Hi Ryan and welcome back to my place mate,

      As always I cherish your wisdom and feedback as one of my mentors.

      Actually you mentioned “follow your fun” and I truly think this has been missing a bit in my posts so far.

      I have been so focussed on creating content solutions for the specific “pain points” of my target audience that I’ve overlooked the fun bit.

      Awesome feedback mate as we all respond so much more when we are not just learning but also being entertained – like we readers feel whenever we visit your blog.

      Thanks for that gem Ryan and I’ll be working on that for sure now.

      Best wishes from the remote Thai village blogger


  6. Hi Peter,
    You write awesomely well on this topic I love so much.
    I’m product creator and make money with it. The second source of my income is Affiliate Marketing. Then Paid posts comes third and that’s mainly on my blog. A bit of Adsense 😉

    Now, Affiliate Marketing can really destroy someone’s effort. This is true for those who start on a bad foundation.

    There is a lot of ‘sweet talk’ out there on Affiliate Marketing.Many people are making it and sharing their earning stats. But few will tell you how they started and what they went through.

    Some even use paid traffic but they never say this. It’s crucial to let newbies know they can make a lot of money with Affiliate Marketing BUT…
    – They must start well (you gave details above)
    – They must be patient if they want the free traffic option
    – They must study to know what works for their chosen audience
    – And to excel, they should have close experience with the products they promote.

    The truth is, if you have established an authority in your niche, you’re hardly going to buy any new products. You are always going to be offered free review copies and that’s the power of establishing an authority first

    Once you are given a free copy, use it and if you are not pleased, don’t promote. Simply tell the owner ‘no I can’t’

    I encourage you keep pumping up these awesome content Peter and sooner or later, this blog is going to be a go-to site for valuable information on Affiliate Marketing.

    Do have a wonderful weekend and thanks for the engagement earlier on my blog.

    • Hello and welcome back Enstine,

      Its a sad truth but you’re right. Not many affiiate marketers will actually share the struggles and mistakes they made on their affiliate marketing journey.

      There is way too much “sweet talk” as you say and this leads so many beginner online marketers to start thinking that affiiate marketing is both easy and a way to earn quick money.

      Thr truth is that affiliate marketing is not easy.

      It takes time and commitment to learn the steps necessary to avoid the pitfalls that so many others fall into. And affiliate marketing is definitely NOT a business model to follow if you’re seeking quick returns.

      However, if you understand your target audience and really get to know and appreciate their “pain points” then selecting a relevant affiliate offer is easy and can be very profitable.

      Enstine I’m so glad you mentioned the “authority status ” bit. Beginner affiliate marketers should never try to copy what these authorities do re “product reviews” as they lack the credibility and status to be considered seriously by any potential buyer.

      However, if the beginner marketer starts the right way and also studies their target audiences they will make money.

      Then over time they can and will develop their very own authority status – especially in the eyes of their subscribers ad customers.

      At that stage they will then be positioned to do as you do and be given “products for review” that they can either promote or discard deending on their experiences with the particular product.

      Many thanks again for your awsome contribution to my blog post Enstine – truly appreciated

      Best wishes from the remote Thai village blogger come affiliate marketer


    • Hello and welcome Anyikwa,

      Thank you for your kind supportive comment.

      Actually I’ve already put together both a PDF and an audio MP3 version of these posts but unsure whether to sell them or give them away as part of my list building strategy.

      For sure I’ll be adding them to my podcast series at least.

      I am delighted you found some real help here and please if there is anything in particular you’d like help with then simply ask me. That’s what I’m here for. OK?

      Here’s where you can access free video training called Dirty Affiliate Marketing Secret – enjoy this great training.

      Best wishes from the remote Thai village blogger come affiliate marketer


  7. Great post here Peter!

    I remember when I was new to affiliate marketing. I sure had a tough time moving forward. This blog post would have shed some light. As simple as knowing about a blog and how blogging can change your business would have created results a lot sooner.

    “Don’t build links. Build relationships.” That sure stands out for me and I truly believe in it. If you have solid relationships, the links will naturally come because people will without hesitation share your content and even link to you from their blogs.

    Thank you for sharing this Peter. A lot of people especially the new ones will without a doubt benefit from this.


    • Hello again PJ – always great to have you visit with me,

      I also remember very clearly how hard it was to get going online – and it was not that long ago either!

      To be perfectly honest I wish I had started blogging years ago. The real benefits of blogging escaped me in my early years online and I just wish someone had pushed me in the right direction. But instead I followed all the advice of the day and went all out trying to sell my affiliate offers to anyone and everyone. What a terrible waste of time, money and energy.

      Building relationmships is definitely the name of the game and this even applies to replying to blog comments like this.

      I very much appreciate people like you who give me part of their valuable time to not just read my post but to then go the extra step and leave me your thoughts.

      In this day and age of rush, rush, rush – people who take part of their precious time to leave me feedback like you have done, is also the basis of a relationship. And really PJ we dont know where such a relationship will head to but I do know that by the simple step of blog commenting we at least have connected with each other. Who knows what we can achieve together if ever the opportunity arose but at least we’d be aware of each other and thats the critical first step. Agree?

      Thanks as always for sharing PJ

      Best wishes from the remote Thai village blogger come affiliate marketer


  8. Hey Peter. David Rhodes here checking out your post. I have learned when reading your posts to bring my pen and paper. Lots of value right here on this post. I honestly and truly did not know how different clickbank and commission junction is. Hope to see you later. Sincerely David

    • Welcome back David,

      Wow thanks for the feedback. Made me think of my earlier days teaching ecomonics when you mentioned you always bring your pen and paper for my posts. Love that mate and I do hope it helps you.

      Make sure you don’t miss the next and final part of this series about affiliate marketing – I’ve kept the best for last!

      Best wishes from the remote Thai village blogger come affiliate marketer


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *