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How I Made My First Affiliate Sale with Zero Followers
Hello! Vanessa with MomBlogFromHome here! I can’t wait to share with you how I made my first affiliate sale with zero followers! I know that is a huge hurdle for new bloggers. Everyone wants to know how to make money right away. I was surprised at how fast I was able to make money with my new blog!
If you haven’t started your blog yet then when you finish this post check out my other post on how to start a blog. When you first start a blog you have to sign up for hosting and I decided to go with SiteGround. They were recommended and I really liked them after signing up so I signed up to be an affiliate for them as well. That is actually who my first sale was through too!
(You don’t have to use SiteGround I also highly recommend HostGator for new bloggers. Use my promo code MBFH2020 to receive up to 60% off your hosting plan!)
Again, check out this post or the one above to learn how to start your own blog and get started earning money today!
Being a Blogger is My Dream Job
I have always dreamt of having a successful profitable blog. I knew it was going to be hard and it would take time but I also knew that even if I made some sales it would take time for those sales to become consistent. The results I am going to share with you are not 100% consistent.
However, I am going to share with you how to make sales more consistently than just a sporadic sale here and there though!
If you are starting to wonder if this blogging thing might be for you or not then check out this post to learn what it takes to be a blogger.
*Update: I ended up making 3 affiliate sales with ZERO followers!
How to Start a Blog
Some people start blogging for fun but I would say that most (or at least the ones I follow) do it to make money.
Even if you did start your blog for fun I am sure that it has crossed your mind on how you could make money with your blog at some point.
There are several different ways to make money with your blog but one of the most common ways is affiliate marketing. That is what I am going to be sharing with you today is how I made my first affiliate sale with zero followers!
Maybe you have decided you want to start your blog right now. Great! Just take my 30-Day Challenge to Start a Blog and get on your way! You could have your blog set up in one day if you wanted to! But for those of us who have kids and other priorities, I have broken it down into 30 daily steps.
Again, you can go faster if you would like!
What is Affiliate Marketing
So what is affiliate marketing anyway? In a nutshell affiliate marketing is promoting someone else’s product(s) or service(s) in exchange for a percent of the sale when someone buys it.
Of course, you want to make sure the products you are promoting are something you have used and can recommend. Your readers are trusting you and your recommendation so you want to help them find the perfect product for them!
For example, I love this course on blogging. I took it and it taught me so much about blogging so I became an affiliate for it.
So since I love the course, I recommend it to my readers with my affiliate link. This link has a “cookie” attached to it or a code that tells the course creator that the person who just purchased their course was sent there by me through my affiliate link.
All you have to do to become an affiliate of a company is to go to their site and usually at the very bottom there will be a link that says something along the lines of “Become an Affiliate” and then just go through the process.
It is usually very quick and easy! You can also google a product you want to be an affiliate for and add +affiliate in the search.
For example, if you want to be an affiliate for a shampoo company you put in shampoo+affiliate and all the shampoo companies that offer affiliate marketing programs will come up!
There are also affiliate networks like Commission Junction and Share a Sale that maintains many companies’ affiliate programs. This way all you have to do is sign up with them and you now have access to a bunch of companies that offer affiliate marketing programs. You just have to choose which one you want and apply for that certain company.
Unfortunately, signing up for one of the affiliate network companies doesn’t automatically sign you up with all the companies it services. You still have to apply to each individual affiliate program.
Is Affiliate Marketing Just Putting Links on Your Blog
No, affiliate marketing is much more than just slapping some links on your blog. You need to know the correct placement and also you must disclose to your readers that you are using affiliate links. Like I have at the top of this post and on my disclosure page.
After you are approved to the affiliate program you applied to, you will receive your affiliate link that you will put on your blog. But when you put it on your blog it will need to be in a relevant spot. No blasting it all over and don’t link it to words that aren’t relevant.
For example, you don’t want to write a blog post about puppies and then link the words about training puppies to your affiliate link to expensive mattresses desperately trying to get a big sale. Not cool. What you want to do is link puppy treats to the words puppy treats in your blog post.
Like I said if they purchase a product you make a “commission” off of their purchase. It is a way for you to make a little extra money and the company to get new sales as well! If you have more questions about affiliate marketing I suggest Michelle’s course Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing.
This course goes very in-depth into affiliate marketing. It is easy to follow and implement and it is jam-packed with great information!
In this course Michelle goes over every detail you need to know about affiliate marketing such as:
- What affiliate marketing is and how it works
- How to properly and legally use affiliate marketing to make an income
- How affiliate marketing makes her over $50,000 a month! (her total blog income is over $125,000 a month)
- The many places to sign up to become an affiliate for different companies
- How to get your readers to convert
- Strategies and ways to promote affiliate links
- Things you DO NOT want to do with affiliate marketing
- Guest speakers that share:
- How to guarantee acceptance into affiliate programs
- How to legally disclose that you are an affiliate
- Bonuses and worksheets
- How to market your affiliate links on all social media platforms
- How to drive thousands of readers to your blog and your affiliate links
As you can see this course is full of amazing information that will set you up for success with affiliate marketing!
How Do You Drive Traffic to Your New Blog
One important piece to making money on your blog with affiliate marketing is you will need traffic to your blog! But wait, isn’t this post about making money with zero followers?
Yes! Yes, it is! I am going to share with you how I was able to make my first affiliate sale with zero followers but eventually, you will need traffic to your blog.
How I Made My First Affiliate Sale with Zero Followers
I had been prepping my site and working on getting it ready to launch. I had a landing page that was live with a countdown to my launch time but that was all. The secret is that I didn’t get my first affiliate sale from my blog itself. I got it by talking about my blog to everyone. I had people ask me what I was doing now that I was home and so I told them!
One person who follows my passion for blogging is my sister! She wanted to start her own cooking blog! She and her husband both are very good cooks! What’s more awesome is they live down the street so I get to eat it all the time! Yay for me!
One day she asked me if I used SiteGround because bloggers she had been following recommended them too. I told her yes and she said she was going to sign up with them since I was. I thought for a second and said: “Well if you do then use my affiliate link!”
She was happy to use it because she understood that it wasn’t going to change the cost for her so why not let me make a little bit off of her purchase? Plus, she was choosing them because of my recommendation anyways.
That day I sent her my link and a couple days later and I got an email congratulating me on my first affiliate sale! Whoo Hoo! I hadn’t even launched my blog yet, I had zero followers, and yet I made my first affiliate sale!
I made two other sales before launching my blog, one from a friend and one from a fellow new blogger I met in a Facebook Group! They each bought Suzi’s course that I took that taught me so much about blogging!
So 3 sales before I had any real traffic!
How to Drive Traffic to Your Blog for More Affiliate Sales
Here are some resources on getting traffic to your new blog!
- What I Use to Grow My Traffic as a Small Blog
- Top Resources to Grow Your Blog Traffic
- How to Drive Pinterest Traffic to Your New Blog
Your Blog is a Business, Promote it!
If you are starting a blogging business then why not share it with everyone you know!
Maybe someone else was getting ready to start blogging too and they need some advice on which hosting to use, which email marketing to use, or how to drive traffic to their new blog?
If you were starting up any other kind of business you would be telling everyone! So why is blogging any different? It’s not! You can do it!
I am so excited to share my blogging journey! And making that first affiliate sale made me feel like I was getting started in the right direction!
Let me know if there is anything I can do to help you on your blogging journey! I would love to hear from you!
I hope you enjoyed hearing How I Made My First Affiliate Sale (with zero followers)!
- Resources for Affiliate Marketing
- Number One Course for Affiliate Marketing
- How to Make Money with Affiliate Marketing on Your Blog
- How to Start Making Money with Pinterest Today
If you’re looking to start a blog or jump-start your new blog:
Take my 30-Day Challenge to Start a Blog. I have taken everything I have learned about starting and growing my blog and turned it into 30 daily action steps!
This 30-Day Challenge will help you: Start a Blog | Create Content | Drive Traffic | Grow Email List
SIGN ME UP!
This is an awesome post. Thank you so much for sharing it. You made affiliate marketing easier for me to understand.I have been blogging for almost 2 years now but I am on blogger and I think that’s why I haven’t been getting as much traffic as I would like. But I have recently had a popular blogger reach out to me and comment/share some of my blog posts. And that is really helping. I am soon going to be switching to wordpress and I will def check out Siteground. If you will send me your link to them when I switch over I will use it so you will get commission for it. Just send me an email if you want. Anyways, thanks for sharing such an awesome, valuable post!!!! I am going to bookmark your blog for sure!!!
Hi Amy! I am so glad to hear that you liked my post and felt it was helpful! I really like Siteground and if you do decide to switch and use my link then I would greatly appreciate that! Thank you so much! I will send it to you. That is awesome to hear about a bigger blogger sharing some of your posts! Congrats!!
This is so encouraging! I have been looking into affiliate marketing for some time and it has made me so nervous! Now I realize that I don’t need a 5000 followers or 10,000 unique page views to be successful with affiliate marketing. Thanks for this post!
I am so glad you enjoyed my post! Yes, that is true you don’t! For another example, I have been networking with other bloggers on Facebook and by helping each other and sharing what resources we use, we have used each other’s affiliate links as well! So I hope that helps too! Plus, I will be posting how I grew my email list to over 2,000 views so far this week on Monday so come back and check it out! Thanks again!
This is really inspiring for people who are just starting in the affilaite world.
I am also an affiliate marketer and as you mentioned that you can get sales without traffic?
I still wonder how did you do that?
P.S Just pinned it.
I was able to do it by word of mouth! That is after all what we are trying to do when we post on social media is to advertise for people to come to our blogs. My first two sales were from talking to my friends and family about my blog and they decided they wanted to give it a try too so they used my affiliate links. Another sale was from a fellow blogger I met in a Facebook group and I told her about Suzi’s course and she wanted to try it and used my link. Then even yesterday I met more fellow bloggers on Facebook and again one wanted to try Tailwind so they used my link for a free month! My point was to remind everyone that just because you have an online business don’t forget about the power of talking about it in the outside world! That is how I got my first two sales.
Oh Nice ! I really loved your idea.
You are right on this point. Basically most of online marketer ignore their family and friends circle.
Great post thank you! If you are interested I have an affiliate programme that would go nicely with your niche x
Thank you Tegan! Sure I would love to hear more. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mahalo(thank you) this was most encouraging because I’m a new blogger and have gone through Suzi’s course that has helped me.
Thank you, I’m glad it helped! Good luck!
Awesome post! It’s so exciting to see someone making sales without having a huge audience! How long have you been blogging for?
Thank you! I officially launched Mom Blog From Home on September 1, 2017, so just over a year now! I was so excited when I made my first sale!
This is so crazy Suzi and Michelle are basically the reason for my blog!!they are amazing I have only purchased one ebook from suzi and the next thing I want to purchase is michelle’s affiliate marketing course. But I have read blog post and watched countless videos from them trying to learn. I am also really enjoying your blog.
Hey Crystal! Yes, I love both of those ladies as well! Suzi has taught me so much! Have you signed up for her Post by Number course? I have pretty much bought almost everything she has because I love how she breaks things down so well! But I would highly suggest that course because a)it’s currently only $9 b) it walks you through making sure you are getting the best SEO for each blog post and c) at the end of the course you can submit a guest post to be featured on her blog! Definitely worth 9 bucks! I talk more about it in this blog post!
I also wrote a blog post on my thoughts on Michelle’s course if you want to check that out too! It is a bit of an investment to get her course but wow is it full of awesome information! There is a reason she is one of the best at affiliate marketing! Again, I talk more about what’s included in the course in that blog post!
Good luck! And thanks for the comments! Let me know if I can help at all!