Bluehost has a great affiliate program for many reasons, rather than boring you with “Why?”. I’d like to talk about Pat Flynn who made $424,800 which accounts for about 40% of his site’s revenue in 2014 via BlueHost’s affiliate program and about $670,000 from all affiliate programs. Now remember his website has multiple sources of income and apart from his BlueHost affiliate program all his other income sources are at best $50,000 and not more. I’d recommend that you have a look at Pat’s site and his income statements, you’ll notice that despite the diversity in his income sources he makes about 65% of his income via affiliate programs. This should quite clearly illustrate the power of affiliate marketing.
This may not be what you have in mind if you're starting a small, cottage-industry website, and the idea of making millions selling your site to a big Internet player may be little more realistic than planning an NBA career. Bear in mind, however, that Yahoo! started as a web guide. What Laurel Touby started in the late 90s as, in her words, "a humble little directory on someone else's website" grew into MediaBistro.com, a freelance writer-focused networking site that she sold for $23 million in 2007.
Learn then selling guidelines. Each marketplace has guidelines that define what you can and cannot sell. State and federal laws also impact what items are prohibited. In general, you cannot sell alcohol, weapons, service contracts, animals or event tickets. Also, while not always prohibited, you may find restrictions on how you can sell items in some categories, such as art, gift cards and coupons. eBay, Craigslist and Amazon publish these guidelines on their websites.
Weebly's app center offers free and premium options aimed at boosting site traffic. You also can add apps that make your site more engaging by enabling testimonials or other visitor comments. Build an email list to expand your audience. In fact, writer Jon Morrow says on the SmartBlogger site that developing an email list is vital to making money on your blog, and suggests offering a freebie in exchange for addresses.
If you have a fondness and talent for taking pictures you can make extra money online by becoming a stock photographer and selling your images to a stock photo company like ShutterStock or iStockPhoto. You’ll get royalties every time someone licenses an image you’ve submitted. To really be successful, build your own photography website to be able to showcase your portfolio and start getting higher-paid private corporate work.
Webinars On Air is a powerful webinar tool that will enable you to create professional webinars for your viewers. Harnessing the power of Google Hangouts, this all in one solution will take care of all the technical aspects of hosting a webinar, including payments. Also have a look at our guide to the best webinar software, both free and paid options.
If you’re looking for inspiration, my friend Michelle Schroeder-Gardner of the website Making Sense of Sense has become the expert on all things affiliate marketing. Michelle earns more than $100,000 per month from her blog and the bulk of her income comes from affiliate sales. Michelle has had so much success with affiliate marketing that she even has her own course called Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing.