So now you have some questions…..
One of these is how much will it cost me to start affiliate marketing…
The cost of entry for affiliate marketing are reasonably low, depending on which model you follow – they are a balance of time versus money and return. The time model will be lower in 2020 about $100 per year and the money model will start at about $300 and go upwards.
So what are these different models and how do the costs break down, let’s find out…..
The models of affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing can be carried out as a spare time side hustle, a full time business or from a blog that you have created about your passion.
Most affiliate marketing will consist of creating content on a website.
There are different models including vlogs on youtube, social media marketing which may have lower costs of entry.
But in fact they have different cost of entry….
The two main ones i will be discussing are creating a website for organic traffic (time model) and creating a website for paid traffic ( money model).
These two are valid models for affiliate marketing and will be into the future…
The time model consists of choosing a niche, creating content based on keywords, signing up for affiliate programs that will help your niche solve problems, getting your articles ranked on search engines and relying on organic traffic for income.
The money model is similar, but has a few a few changes…
You choose a niche, searching for keywords for products, create content – but this time it can be pre-sale pages, creating ppc ( pay per click) campaigns, running and tweaking your campaign.
The cost involved with the time model
For the time model you will need a few key items…
You will need hosting – this is paid for normally on a yearly basis.
You will need a domain to place all of your content.
And extras which are nice to have ongoing but not necessary at the start…
A keyword tool – this can be free or paid…
An email auto responder
A source of images and media
If you don’t enjoy any aspect of affiliate marketing then outsourcing…
Hosting can be a minefield to sort out what you want, at the start look for recommendations – i like bluehost, 1 and 1, and am looking into hostinger.
The cost of these, not in their discounted pricing are $10, 15.58 and $10.80 (£8.87, 12.99 and 8.99) respectively per month and the dreaded vat needs to be added….
So between $120 and $192 (£100 and £160 ) per year, but these prices are normally heavily discounted and if you email and ask for their best price then you get a good deal…
Currently hostinger are offering their busines web hosting for $4.78 (£3.99) instead of $16.78 (£13.99), so the cost would be $57.50 (£48.88) per year instead of the $201.50 (£167.88)…
The domain you effectively rent for a year as a minimum, with domain privacy then typically you will pay $15.00 (£12.5) per year.
You can start this model for less than $120 (£100) on a budget…
Looking at the extras…
Keyword tools for keyword research come in at between $36 and $360 (£30 and £300) per month….
An email autoresponder for email marketing, $39 to $75 (£32.5 and £62.5) monthly
Premium Image services, so you are not just using free stock images that every body else is using are between $99 and $350 (£82.5 and £291) per year.
And outsourcing can be from $50 ( £41) for articles and other services may include virtual assistant to cover posting schedules, social media.
There are free keyword tools you can use at the start, the google keyword planer tool or ubersuggest and there are a few other nice tools that give you a limited number of uses per day or month.
But at the beginning you can start with hosting and a domain and the main thing ….time.
This will be the bit which is taken up the most with this model.
You will be choosing topics, searching for keywords, creating articles , creating media posts, covering website updates, the whole lot…
And it does take time to get your articles ranked in search engines and organic traffic coming in and clicking through on those affiliate links….
So you may not see any return for at least 6 months or maybe longer depending on how many articles you publish, what your niche is , how you are at keyword research and whether you understand your audience.
But there is a slightly quicker way to get a return….
The cost involved with the money model
You will still need a few bits…
You still need the hosting and a domain.
But added to this is a budget for paid advertising.
Ideally you will learn a fair bit about pay per click ( ppc) marketing before you dive right in or you may lose your shirt and think it doesn’t work.
Set yourself a budget of say $30 per month and use that within a couple of days each month, this way you can learn what is starting to work.
Ideally you would have a lot more to use for a month as both you and who you are advertising with are trying to learn your market.
So you can see this can very quickly add up in costs.
It really is not worth only spending a couple of bucks per day on advertising, as this will indicate to google that you are not really serious about this and the amount of keywords you will be shown for will be very low.
The domain will be mainly for landing pages, which you can create or go or something like clickfunnels ( $99 to $299 per month).
And again an email autoresponder for marketing after doing a campaign to harvest email addresses.
As you can see this model has a few different skills that you really need to cover quickly at the start to prevent using too much money with low returns.
So let’s summarize the differences between the models and see which is better…
Which is better time or money model for affiliate marketing
We have looked briefly at two models – the time model and the money model.
With the time model you will be doing most of the work yourself, so you need to decide what sort of time commitment you have.
Taking onboard that content creation will take a long time at the start and that you need loads of content for the time model and organic traffic – you need to decide whether you really have the time for this.
Even if you decide to outsource the content creation, ideally you create a few yourself to see what it is like and what you want on your site.
Learning the skills of SEO, how to rank highly in the search engines, is something you need to quickly master or wait even longer to rank.
Learning how to use wordpress or a similar content management system and setup a website ( it really is very easy to setup a website nowadays). And stay on top of content creation are the main time takers in this model.
With the money model you don’t need to create loads of content, but you do need to create compelling landing pages – either for email signup or for promoting products.
You may decide to outsource this or have a go yourself at the start.
You will need to learn how to create attractive ads and how to structure ad groups for campaigns.
Are there methods which are cheaper than this – yes.
But they will take even longer to gain traction and changes in platforms terms may see you online business wiped out overnight…
Some affiliate marketing networks do not allow direct linking from social media, so you may be losing some of the best networks using a free model.
My personal recommendation is to go for a mix of the time and money model.
Start out with the time model and get to know your audience – learn what they want to hear about.
Sort out your own piece of the web ,how you can cut through the noise and reach your audience.
Sign up with affiliate marketing networks, promoting their products and services for your niche.
Once you have started to rank and get visitors who are clicking through, you can start to promote that article via paid ads.
This will grow the return on that article quicker than organically.
Reinvestment of the return will allow your site to grow through more content and more paid ads.
Remembering that with the paid model once you stop paying the visitors stop coming from that source, so building up organic traffic is a must if you want a passive income from this resource.
You can create landing pages on your site to grab emails in exchange for useful information.
Then use an auto responder for email marketing.
So you can see that if you start with the time model your entry costs can be kept low and grow as you need other services.
One thing i would put here is that getting trained is really necessary.
Yes there is enough information on the net for free for you to work it out.
But that will be another time loading on your valuable resources, and how many models will you be trying to combine to create your site.
What is really nice it is to have a resource where you have a training course, taking you from nothing to having a full online business that is built step by step as you learn.
Finding out how to structure your posts for SEO and the best chances of ranking.
Seeing the importance of having fast loading speeds.
And how to structure your site for the best returns…
I am a member of two courses, but one of them i would recommend to complete newbies as a really safe and secure platform – you can red about it in my review of wealthy affiliates…
The other resource is for people who like to take a little more of a risk, you will be finding your own hosting, domains everything, but have a step by step course building an online business within 24 months- project 24 has been very well received by members and others looking from outside.
Both of these courses are very valuable resources for the beginner to create a money making online business.
I would recommend reading both reviews and seeing which is the best fit for you and then going for it.
The only time things will start to change is when you change things.
So you are now armed with the sort of prices the models will cost and a couple of valuable resources to get you started – go for it.