#7 Be an Affiliate. An overview.
Of the list of criteria that Google is looking for in order to rank your site is trust. Trust is as close to number one as it can be. In other words, your site needs to be trustworthy in order to rank well. It’s as simple as that.
You can gain trust a number of ways. Topic hierarchy, for instance, is one method. Keeping your site’s main topic pin-pointed and focused is another. Top of the list of things Google is looking for though is feedback; feedback from other trustworthy sites, in the form of backlinks, testimonials, ratings and affiliate programs. The number one way that small businesses grow is word of mouth. This is the same for your business online as well.
Your site should already be well focused and on target regarding whatever topic your site is mainly about. If your site is about a certain type of shoe, it would be best to not post blogs about the weather at your favorite ski resort. If your blog is rambling like that, you really need to clean it out and start over.
Here are my five reasons why being an affiliate is a good idea:
- A very large side effect from the possibility of making some money on the side is that your site is building and gaining trust. That is if you work the affiliate angle properly and with some care. Just placing ads on your site can actually backfire and have your site lose trust. You have to do it with some thought and concern for your customer. If you are better serving your customer with your ad, you are building trust. Get to the know the service or product inside and out and then take the time to explain how this service or product can help your customers.
- Passive Income.
- Although you are not 100% completely leaving your affiliate marketing alone you don’t have to do much to keep it alive and working. You build the relationship with your customers and then share with them something you have found useful that you think they would find useful too. Once you do that you can let it do its thing.
- It’s Easy.
- In most cases, all you need to do is fill out a form and then they will send you the code to put on your site. And that is about it. The hard part if there is one is to not just post the ad, but to explain to your customers exactly why you are referring them to this company in the first place.
- It’s Free.
- No up front cost is a nice thing in this economic climate. No cost ever, is even better. You don’t have to pay to be an affiliate. Ever.
- You are the Boss.
- You say what companies you feel like supporting and what companies are just not quite up to snuff. You can build your companies influence on the web your way.
Article by Timothy Eberly
Timothy is a web design and graphic artist that has been working in the business for over 20 years and has designed and built thousands of websites including one for a major ad firm in Spokane. In addition to graphic design and web development he also worked as a photographer on several films made in the Spokane area. You can connect with him on facebook and Google+.