Affiliate Marketing 101: Product Research

Now that you have the thirsty market that is ready to absorb your products, it’s time to find those products. And to do this there is nothing easier than going to Google and┬ásearching for the features of the product. On the site of the product if there is an affiliate program in place you’ll find an “Affiliates”┬álink, mostly at the bottom of the home page. If you can’t find any, there are affiliate networks that list most of the affiliate programs out there. Join some of those networks and search their list of affiliate programs.

Take note of all of the products that you’ve found. This is your starting list. Now set down and open the landing pages of all of these products in internet browsers (or tabs) at the same time and look for the following:

The header: Does it communicate reasoning or emotions? Exclude all of those that communicate reasoning, because emotions sell more. Does it have benefits (not features) in the headline text? If yes short-list it for the next screening.

The theme: A successful web designer will make sure his design appeals to the target sector of the community. If, for example, you know your audience is women, then the theme of the landing page should appeal to women. How to know? Ask a woman.

What if you don’t know your audience?

That’s easy. Ask quantcast.com. Copy the url of the landing page and paste it in quantcast, hit enter and you’ll know the gender, age, education, and the level of income of the audience of this site. If the site returns no data it means it hasn’t been around long enough. In that case check the demographics of another authority site related to what you are trying to sell.

Check for bullets: Do they list features or benefits? Again, go for the benefits.

The call to action: Is the call to action clear and can not be missed? This is what you want. You don’t want to spend hours of your life and heard-earned money sending traffic to your affiliate link just to get confused and leave without taking action.

Is there an opt in form? Perfect, it means there will be a follow up with a fraction of the traffic that didn’t buy.

Are there any ads of any kind? Run away. It means it is not converting for them and advertising on the site is how they are trying to monetize their traffic. Not good for you.

You’ll need at least two products to start because you’ll send half of the traffic that you’ll generate to each one, compare their conversion, then send 90% of your traffic to the winning one. The other 10% will be for testing other products.

Now this step is optional, but it helps you live the culture of your audience: buy the product and try it yourself if possible, or have it reviewed by someone who belongs to the culture of your audience. (If it is about babies, for example, and you don’t have one, pass it to your friend who’s got a new born as a gift, then later ask about their experience with that gift).

In the next article I’ll write about the different methods of promotions, the pros and cons of each one, and my recommendation.

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