In this blog, we discuss some of the best Affiliate Marketing Hacks and tips to help you increase your affiliate marketing income and grow your online business. Whether you want to drive more traffic to your website, improve your conversion rate, or optimize your collaboration with affiliate partners, these (international) affiliate marketing hacks can help you earn more money online.
What is affiliate marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a form of online marketing where a company or advertiser collaborates with “affiliates,” “affiliate partners,” or “influencers” to promote their products or services. The affiliate receives a commission for every successful sale or conversion generated through a unique affiliate link.
As an affiliate marketer, you promote other people’s products or services through your website, blog, social media channels, or email list. By using your personal affiliate link, you can track how many people click through to the advertiser’s website from your promotion and how many of them actually make a purchase. This allows you to benefit from passive income.
With the right strategy, focus, and dedication, affiliate marketing can be a lucrative source of income for anyone willing to invest their time and effort in it.
Why is passive income mentioned when an affiliate has to work hard to earn money?
Passive income is often mentioned because over time, less effort is required to maintain income from affiliate marketing. Unlike traditional jobs that require going to an office and working for hours every day to get paid, affiliate marketers can earn money by setting up a website, blog, or social media account and posting quality content with affiliate links.
When you start with affiliate marketing, you spend a lot of time creating and setting up a website and/or your social media account and providing them with high-quality SEO-friendly content and affiliate links. Additionally, it’s important to analyze the traffic to your website and adjust the content based on your research findings.
Once your website is well-established and has sufficient quality content that ranks well on Google, it can continue to attract potential customers even if you, as an affiliate marketer, are not actively promoting products for a while.
In other words, once you have created high-quality content and built a loyal audience, generating income can be relatively passive. However, it’s still important to regularly post new content and optimize your website or social media account to keep your audience engaged and attract new visitors.
International Affiliate Marketing Can Be Lucrative
Engaging in international affiliate marketing can be more lucrative than focusing solely on a domestic market, because there are more potential customers. By targeting the international market, you can reach a much larger audience and attract potential customers from all over the world. This increases the likelihood of generating more income.
Additionally, there are many international affiliate networks you can join, such as Amazon Associates, ClickBank, ShareASale, CJ Affiliate, Shopify, and many more. These networks provide access to a wide range of products and services to promote and can offer attractive commissions for your efforts.
The downside is that there is greater competition in the international market, and you may need to invest extra time and effort in adapting your content and marketing to different cultures and languages. You also need to consider any international taxes and regulations.
In most cases, it is more profitable to focus on a niche that you are passionate about and have expertise in, whether it’s local or international. After all, you don’t want to spend your days on topics that you have no interest in. Experiment with different niches and markets to see which one suits you best and can be the most profitable.
If you’re interested in starting a Dutch affiliate partnership, the following information might be of interest to you:
What does the affiliate network in the Netherlands consist of?
There are various affiliate networks in the Netherlands where advertisers and affiliates can sign up to collaborate and earn commissions. Some of the largest affiliate networks in the Netherlands include:
- Awin: Awin is one of the biggest affiliate networks globally and offers a wide range of advertisers in different niches.
- Paypro: Paypro is a Dutch affiliate network that allows you to earn a relatively high commission in various ways and for different products or services. They have many affiliate campaigns targeting diverse markets, from cryptocurrencies to recipes and yoga.
- Daisycon: Daisycon is a Dutch affiliate network that brings together advertisers and publishers in various sectors, including travel, finance, retail, and more.
- TradeTracker: TradeTracker is a global affiliate network with a strong presence in Europe and Asia. The network provides advertisers and affiliates with access to tools and technologies to optimize their campaigns.
- Partnerize: Partnerize is a global affiliate network that focuses on brands in different sectors, including retail, travel, finance, and more.
There are many more affiliate networks in the Netherlands, but these are some of the most well-known and popular networks where you can start as an affiliate. Research the pros and cons of each network before signing up to ensure it aligns with your needs and affiliate goals.
Companies in the Netherlands with affiliate programs
As a Dutch affiliate, you can sign up with the following companies:
- Plug&Play: PlugandPlay sells software that you can promote as an affiliate, earning a generous 30% recurring referral fee (affiliate commission). With the sale of a Premium subscription, this means you earn €14.70 per month, and with an Ultimate account, you receive a remarkable €37.50 per customer, per month.
- Bol.com: The Bol.com Partner Program is one of the largest affiliate programs in the Netherlands, offering affiliates the opportunity to earn commissions by promoting products on Bol.com (its similar to Amazon). The commission applies to the entire contents of the shopping cart, up to 7%.
- Amazon: With the Amazon Partner Program, you can earn money by sharing products and available programs from Amazon with your audience, through qualifying purchases and customer activities. Depending on the product you sell, your commission can go up to 14%.
- Wehkamp: The Wehkamp affiliate program can earn you a commission of up to 10% of the purchase amount. You can earn this if you redirect a visitor from your website to Wehkamp, and if that visitor subsequently places an order.
- Coolblue: Coolblue has various affiliate programs, including Coolblue Recruitment, where you promote their job vacancies (you receive a standard fee of €10 per lead), and Coolblue Energy Affiliate, where you sell their solar panels, charging stations, charging cards, and energy contracts. The commission per lead depends on the product you promote, ranging from €7.50 for the sale of charging stations to €20 for the sale of a power and gas subscription.
How much can you earn with affiliate marketing?
The commission amount can vary depending on the specific partner program and may be based on a percentage of the sale or a fixed amount per sale. Affiliate marketing can be a lucrative way for individuals or businesses to earn passive income by promoting products or services they believe in and that are relevant to their audience.
Affiliate marketing can be financially worthwhile for those willing to invest the time and effort required to be successful. Here are some factors to consider when deciding if affiliate marketing is worth it for you:
- Your niche: It’s important to choose a niche that you have a lot of knowledge about and passion for, and that has a large enough audience to make it worthwhile. This will help you create content that resonates with your audience.
- Your marketing skills: Affiliate marketing requires a good understanding of marketing tactics, such as SEO, social media, and email marketing. If these concepts are new to you, it may take some time to learn and apply them effectively.
- Your perseverance: Affiliate marketing is not a get-rich-quick scheme, and it takes time to build a successful affiliate business. It requires consistent effort and perseverance to build an audience, create content, and generate sales.
- Affiliate programs: Choosing the right affiliate programs is important for success. Look for programs with high-quality products, competitive commissions, and good support for affiliates.
Which niche is most profitable in affiliate marketing?
The potential for affiliate marketing to be profitable depends on various factors, such as the niche, the product or service being promoted, the target audience, and the affiliate’s marketing skills. Here are some of the niches where affiliate marketing generally performs well:
- Finance: The finance sector offers a wide range of opportunities for affiliates, including credit cards, investment services, loans, cryptocurrencies, and more. The high commissions in this niche make it attractive for affiliates. If trading and cryptocurrencies are your thing, you can be quite successful in this niche.
- Health and wellness: The health and wellness sector is rapidly growing, with high demand for products and services focused on fitness, nutrition, and self-improvement. Affiliates can benefit from the popularity of this niche and the often-offered high commissions. Especially for nutrition and supplements, it’s important to have sufficient knowledge as reliability and expertise are crucial in this niche.
- Technology: The tech niche is generally one of the most lucrative niches for affiliates, due to high commissions and the demand for products and services in this sector. This niche encompasses a wide range of products and services, including smartphones, computers, software, consumer electronics, gaming, and more. To succeed in the tech niche, it’s important to stay updated on the latest developments and trends. Affiliates need to create content that is relevant to their audience and provides valuable insights about products and services. This can include reviews, product comparisons, tutorials, and tips. By providing valuable content and focusing on the needs of their audience, affiliates can build trust and increase their conversion rates.
- Travel: The travel industry is another niche where affiliates can earn significant commissions. This can range from flight tickets and hotel bookings to travel insurance and tours. Affiliates who travel extensively can earn substantial commissions in this niche.
- Adult industry: The adult industry is undergoing a development with a focus on interactive capabilities and VR in sex toys and subscriptions to adult films. As a Datoro Media affiliate, you can earn up to a 25% recurring commission per sale. For example, selling a lifetime subscription to films for $999 can earn you a whopping $250. In this industry, there is an additional challenge as many platforms do not accept links to such products or sites, and Google also has separate guidelines for 18+ content to rank your content. As a result, you may have less competition than in more common niches.
What are the requirements to become an affiliate?
It entirely depends on the affiliate program you want to join – each partner may have different requirements. For example, they may expect you to have +50 blogs on a specific topic or have, let’s say, 1500 followers on your YouTube channel. So, it’s important to do your research before signing up as an affiliate.
Here are some general steps you can take to become a successful affiliate:
- Choose a niche: With so many products and services available, it’s beneficial to select a niche that aligns with your interests and expertise. This makes it easier to produce compelling content that appeals to your audience.
- Find an affiliate program and review the requirements: There are many different affiliate programs available, ranging from major tech companies like Apple and Microsoft to smaller companies specializing in specific products or services. Look for a partner that offers a competitive commission. Also, consider the program’s reputation and the support they provide.
- Create a website or blog: A website or blog is a crucial component in building your affiliate marketing business. It allows you to create valuable content for your target audience and attract potential customers. Ensure your website is relevant, easy to navigate, and includes a clear call-to-action for your affiliate links.
- Produce quality content: Creating high-quality content is an essential aspect of building a successful affiliate marketing campaign. Write blog posts, product reviews, guides, or comparative articles that cater to your niche and target audience. Ensure your content is well-written, informative, and helps your audience make informed purchasing decisions.
- Promote your affiliate links: After creating valuable content, it’s important to promote your affiliate links. This can be done through social media, email marketing, or paid advertising. Promote your affiliate links ethically and transparently. Provide clear value to your audience and avoid misleading or coercing them into making a purchase.
How can you earn money as an affiliate?
As an affiliate, you receive a unique link (an “affiliate link”). When a user clicks on this link from your website, social media platform, or email, it can be tracked using cookies. The cookie then tracks the user to determine if they make a purchase. If they do so within a certain time frame, you earn a commission.
Each cookie has a “duration” or “cookie lifespan,” which simply determines how long the cookie will track the user’s online activities.
For example, if a cookie has a lifespan of 30 days, the visitor needs to make a purchase within 30 days of clicking your affiliate link; otherwise, the lead is no longer traceable.
How do good affiliate links look like?
Good affiliate links should naturally blend in and align with the context of your content. Here are a few characteristics of good affiliate links:
- Relevant anchor text: The anchor text (the text that contains the link) should be relevant to the destination page and the topic of your content. Avoid using anchor text like “Click here” as it doesn’t clearly indicate where the link leads.
- Clear destination page: The destination page where the link directs should be clear and relevant to your content and the products or services you’re promoting. It should also be user-friendly and have a professional appearance.
- Short and clean URLs: Long and unattractive URLs can discourage users from clicking. Therefore, use a URL shortener to make the link shorter and cleaner.
- Transparent affiliate disclaimer: It’s important to be transparent about using an affiliate link. Include a disclaimer in your content to inform your readers that you earn a commission if they make a purchase through your link.
- Utilize tracking codes: Using tracking codes is helpful for identifying which links are most effective and optimizing your promotional efforts. This can be done using UTM codes, for example.
By incorporating these characteristics, your affiliate links will appear professional and trustworthy, increasing the likelihood of your readers clicking on them.
How to use UTM codes for affiliate links?
UTM codes are tracking parameters that can be added to your URL to gain insights into the sources of your website traffic. This is useful for affiliate marketing as it allows you to see which specific affiliate links generate the most conversions.
To use UTM codes for affiliate links, follow these steps:
- Use the Google Analytics Campaign URL Builder to create UTM codes. This free tool generates UTM codes for your affiliate links.
- Enter the URL of the destination page where your affiliate link leads in the first field.
- Add the UTM codes in the respective fields. Here’s a brief explanation of the key fields:
- Campaign Source: This field indicates where the link originates from, such as your website or a specific social media channel.
- Campaign Medium: This field indicates how the link is distributed, such as via email, social media, or banner ads.
- Campaign Name: This field indicates the campaign the link is a part of, such as a specific promotion or event.
- Campaign Term: This field is optional and can be used to mark specific keywords or terms.
- Campaign Content: This field is optional and can be used to differentiate between different variations of the same link.
- Copy the generated URL with UTM codes and use it as your affiliate link.
By using UTM codes, you can view reports in Google Analytics to identify the most effective links in generating conversions. You can leverage this information to optimize your promotional efforts and earn more commissions as an affiliate marketer.
How to choose the best affiliate products and make a profit?
Choosing the best affiliate products and making a profit as an affiliate depends on various factors, including:
- Relevance: Select products that are relevant to your audience and align with the content of your website or social media accounts. Promoting products that your audience isn’t interested in would yield little benefit.
- Quality: Choose high-quality products that can provide value and assistance to your audience. This can lead to more clicks, conversions, and a better reputation as an affiliate.
- Commission: Choose products with a high commission or commission structure that are worth promoting. Ensure that the commission is sufficient to cover your marketing efforts’ costs and generate a profit.
- Competition: Select products with moderate competition. If there are too many affiliates promoting the same products, it can be challenging to differentiate yourself and make a profit.
- Reliability of the affiliate network: Choose products from trustworthy affiliate networks that provide timely payments and reliable tracking. This ensures the safety of your earnings and commissions. Additionally, it’s helpful if the affiliate partner provides access to product images, descriptions, and other promotional materials.
To make a profit as an affiliate, you’ll need to develop a strategy and invest in marketing efforts such as creating high-quality content, building an email list, utilizing social media, and optimizing your website for search engines. It’s also crucial to continuously test, analyze, and optimize to achieve the best results and generate profits.
How to become a top affiliate marketer?
Top affiliate marketers follow these best practices:
- Choose the right niche: Select a niche you’re interested in and have extensive knowledge about.
- Become an expert in your niche: Invest time and effort into learning everything about your niche. Stay updated on the latest developments and trends.
- Build a strong brand: Engage in branding activities to build a brand that exudes trust and authority. This will help you attract more followers and customers.
- Build a quality mailing list: Create an email list with high-quality subscribers who are interested in your niche and regularly send them valuable content.
- Be selective with products: Promote only products that you believe will add value to your audience. Choose products that offer high commissions and have a high demand.
- Optimize your content: Optimize your content for search engines to drive more organic traffic to your website. Use relevant keywords for your niche and target audience and ensure a good internal linking structure.
- Increase your conversion rate: Experiment with different strategies and techniques to boost your conversion rate. Use strong call-to-actions, persuasive product descriptions, and relevant images, for example.
- Analyze your results: Keep track of which products sell well and which don’t. Continuously optimize and adjust your campaigns to improve your results.
- Collaborate with other affiliates: Work together with other affiliates to expand your reach and learn from each other.
- Keep learning: Stay updated on new developments in the affiliate marketing world and continue learning about your niche and your target audience.
- Master specific techniques like search engine optimization (SEO) and email marketing to optimize your affiliate marketing efforts.
(Read also: What is SEO & How important are these techniques for sites?)
- Be patient and consistent: Affiliate marketing takes time, patience, and consistency. It may take a while to see results, so stay committed and keep creating and promoting valuable content.
By following this best practices roadmap and remaining consistent, you can become a top affiliate marketer and achieve success in your niche.
What are the most common mistakes in affiliate marketing?
There are several common mistakes that affiliates make when setting up and running their affiliate marketing campaigns. Here are some of the most common mistakes:
- Promoting too many products: One of the biggest mistakes affiliates make is promoting too many products simultaneously. This can clutter the content and cause you to lose focus on the key products. Choose and promote only products that are truly valuable to your audience.
- Not providing enough value: It’s important to offer valuable content that is relevant to your audience. If you only promote products without adding any value, your readers won’t see your content as useful and will be less likely to click on your affiliate link.
- Lack of transparency: Always be transparent about using affiliate links. Clearly disclose in your content that you receive a commission if someone makes a purchase through your link. Lack of transparency can lead to a loss of trust from your audience and ultimately result in reduced earnings.
- Not targeting the right audience: It’s crucial to know and target your audience properly with the right content and products. If you target the wrong audience, you’ll generate less traffic and fewer conversions.
- Not testing and adjusting: Regularly test and make adjustments to your affiliate marketing campaign. If you’re not willing to test and make changes, you won’t know what works and what doesn’t, and you’ll be less profitable.
- Focusing solely on commissions: It’s important not to solely focus on commissions but also on the value you provide to your audience. If you’re solely driven by earning commissions, it can compromise the value you offer and ultimately lead to lower earnings.
By avoiding these mistakes, you can set up a successful affiliate marketing campaign and maximize your profits.
Is there a formula to determine how many blogs and followers you need to sell a product as an affiliate?
There is no specific formula to determine the number of blogs or social media followers you need to sell a product as an affiliate. It depends on the product you’re promoting, the niche you’re in, the competition, and the quality of your content.
Instead of focusing on a specific number of blogs or followers, it’s more important to build an engaged and authentic audience that is genuinely interested in the products you promote. By creating valuable content and engaging with your audience on social media and other channels, you can gradually build a loyal following that trusts your recommendations and is more likely to click on your affiliate links and make purchases.
Additionally, it’s important to partner with reliable advertisers and promote products that are relevant to your audience. Choosing the right products to promote and presenting them effectively to your audience can make a significant difference in the success of your affiliate marketing campaign.
What is the average CTR for promoting products as an affiliate?
There is no specific average click-through rate (CTR) for promoting products as an affiliate. It depends on the type of product you’re promoting, the quality of your content, the competition, and your audience.
In general, the more relevant your content is to your audience and the better you communicate the benefits of the product you’re promoting, the higher your CTR is likely to be.
That being said, some reports suggest that the average CTR for affiliate marketing links generally ranges from 2-5%. However, this can vary depending on the specific niche, audience, and other factors. It’s important to regularly analyze and optimize the performance of your affiliate links to achieve the best possible results.
Read also: What is Click Through Rate (CTR) and How Can You Increase It?
How about YouTube affiliates?
Affiliate marketing on YouTube can be an effective way to earn money if you have a successful channel with a large and engaged audience. Here are some key things to consider when it comes to YouTube affiliates:
- Product selection: Just like with other affiliate marketing activities, it’s important to choose products that align with your audience’s interests and are relevant to the content you create.
- Transparency: It’s important to be transparent about using affiliate links. This can mean including the affiliate link in your video description and explaining that you receive a commission when people make a purchase through your link.
- Content: Creating high-quality content that informs and entertains your audience, rather than solely focusing on selling products, is crucial. By helping your audience make informed decisions and providing valuable information, you can gain their trust and ultimately generate more sales.
- Analysis: By tracking the performance of your affiliate links, you can see which products work best for your audience and which promotional strategies are most effective. This can help improve and optimize your future campaigns.
Please mind that YouTube has tightened its policies regarding affiliate marketing and sponsorships. Make sure you are aware of the platform’s guidelines and adhere to them to avoid any issues.
Tips for Instagram, Pinterest, and Snapchat affiliates
The above tips also apply to Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, and other social media platforms where you want to implement affiliate marketing. Here are some specific tips for each platform:
- Instagram: Use the post description to include the affiliate link and provide an explanation of the product and how it is relevant to your audience. Make sure to use hashtags to help your posts be discovered.
- Pinterest: Create attractive pins that catch the attention of your audience and clearly include the affiliate link. Ensure that the pins are relevant to your audience’s interests.
- Snapchat: Use the “swipe up” feature to direct your audience to the affiliate link. You can also create stories where you present the product and explain its relevance to your audience.
Make sure you understand and follow the guidelines of each platform to avoid any issues. Also, be transparent about using affiliate links and only promote products that are relevant and useful to your audience.
Affiliate marketing hacks
Here are some hacks that top affiliate marketers use:
- Test different affiliate programs: Not all affiliate programs are the same. Test different programs to see which ones best suit your audience and offer the highest commissions.
- Use high-converting products: Promote products that are well-known and highly regarded in the market. If you promote products with low conversion rates, you won’t earn much money.
- Use the right keywords: To drive more traffic to your site, use keywords that your audience uses. Conduct keyword research to find the right keywords and use them in your content and advertisements.
- Build an email list: Build an email list to reach your audience and build a relationship with them. This is a great way to sell more products and earn more money.
- Use social media: Use social media to reach your audience and inform them about the products you promote. Make sure to post regularly and keep your audience engaged.
- Offer bonus products: Offer your audience additional bonus products when they purchase through your affiliate link. This can increase your conversions and earnings.
- Analyze your results: Keep track of your statistics and analyze which products perform best and which marketing tactics work. Use this information to improve your strategy and earn more money.
Is it wise to use PPC advertising for affiliate marketing?
Using PPC advertising as part of your affiliate marketing can be a smart move. However, it depends on your budget, the type of product you’re promoting, your target audience, and the competition in the market.
PPC advertising can be effective because you can create targeted ads that are displayed to people who are likely interested in the products you promote. This can result in more clicks and conversions, which in turn can lead to higher commissions for you as an affiliate.
On the other hand, PPC advertising can also be costly, especially if you’re competing with other advertisers bidding on the same keywords. Additionally, the commission you earn as an affiliate may not be high enough to cover the costs of the ads.
If you decide to use PPC advertising as part of your affiliate marketing strategy, it’s important to have a clear plan and budget in place, and continuously analyze and optimize the results to ensure you achieve a positive return on investment (ROI).
What payment options should you have as an affiliate?
The payment options you need as an affiliate depend on the affiliate program you’re working with. Many affiliate programs pay out via PayPal or bank transfers, but there are also programs that pay through checks, payment cards, or other payment methods.
When starting with affiliate marketing, it’s important to know what payment methods the program offers before signing up. Make sure you understand the payment terms of the program and have the required information to receive payments.
If you choose to work with an affiliate network, the network will usually handle your payments and pay you according to their own terms and schedules. It’s important to read and understand the terms of the affiliate network and how and when you will be paid.
It’s also a good idea to open a separate bank account for your affiliate earnings, so you can keep your affiliate income and expenses separate from your personal finances. This can help keep your finances organized and assist you in managing taxes and other financial responsibilities better.
How much tax do you have to pay for affiliate income?
As an affiliate you are required to pay taxes on the income you earn from affiliate marketing. The amount of tax you have to pay depends on your personal situation and income.
If you reside in the Netherlands and have income from affiliate marketing, you must pay taxes on this income. It falls under box 1 of Dutch tax legislation, where the rate is progressive and dependent on your total income. The rate can vary between 37.10% and 49.50% in 2023. To be certain, you should check the website of the Belastingdienst or the Ondernemersplein-KVK.
If you are a full-time affiliate marketer and earn enough to be considered a self-employed entrepreneur, you will also have to pay turnover tax (VAT). In the Netherlands, the standard VAT rate is 21%.
In the United States, the equivalent of the Dutch Tax Authority (Belastingdienst) is the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The Small Business Administration (SBA) supports and provides resources for small businesses in the United States. Their website offers information on starting and managing a business, obtaining loans and grants, business planning, regulations, and other relevant topics for businesses in the United States.
In conclusion, we can say that affiliate marketing is an exciting way for businesses and individuals to collaborate and benefit from each other’s strengths. It is a proven method for promoting products and services and can be highly lucrative for both advertisers and affiliates.
Whether you are a business owner looking for cost-effective ways to promote your brand or an individual marketer seeking ways to earn passive income, affiliate marketing offers many opportunities.
By educating yourself on best practices and strategies, you can become a successful affiliate marketer and position yourself for long-term success.