It seems ideal, doesn’t it? You set up a website, add a few affiliate links, and start earning the passive income you’ve always dreamed of.

Many bloggers are earning top dollar this way. For example, Ryan Robinson over at ryrob.com makes mid-five figures every month.

Blogging isn’t the only way of making money from affiliate marketing, though. Microsites, email lists, and video marketing are just a few methods people use to generate an online income.

Although not everyone is making six figures from affiliate marketing, you can use tips and strategies to improve your site and increase your income.

Affiliate marketing is the process of earning money (commissions) every time you promote a company’s products or services and drive a sale. You only get paid every time you drive a sale, just like a commission-only sales representative.

Now before I dive into affiliate marketing, let me tell you why you should care.

Ever since the 4-Hour Workweek was released, everyone seems to have the same goal.

To wake up in the morning, open their laptop, and look at something like this:

affiliate marketing guide 2021

That’s the dream, right?

Make money while you sleep.

Ready to find out more? Let’s start with the basics—what it is and who uses it. 

What Is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing is promoting other people’s products in return for a small commission for each sale. You’ve probably seen headings marked “affiliate link” or “sponsored post” on many of the websites you visit; or maybe you’ve already taken the first step and signed up to an affiliate network.

If you are new to affiliate marketing, let’s cover how it works. 

First, find an affiliate program or network you are interested in. Look at the program overview, including the type of products or services, payment methods, and commissions they offer. 

If it appeals to you, sign up and wait for confirmation of your acceptance. Then, start creating content, adding the custom links the program provides. Those links track when one of your users makes a purchase, and you’ll earn a small commission. 

You can work with individual companies or affiliate networks, where you register and choose the programs that interest you. The programs are generally divided into categories to make selection easier. Once approved, start promoting your affiliate links on your website, in newsletters, on social media, and anywhere else you’re permitted to share links. 

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