The 5 Best Types of Blog Posts to Make Affiliate Sales

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The 5 Best Types of Blog Posts to Make Affiliate Sales. Makealivingwriting.com

Starting my website wasn’t just about helping the industry, it was also to earn a little extra money, eventually making passive income so as to support my writing habit.

But it wasn’t until I started creating the following five post types that I saw real return on my writing efforts. This isn’t to say I stopped providing excellent content – quite the contrary. Instead, I provided a different type of value that also returned value to myself as well.

If you want to make affiliate sales, these five post types can be added to any type of niche, not just one on book marketing. So, check them out and start thinking about how you can create the sort of content that provides for your readers, but also offers natural ways to increase your bottom line.

1. List of tools or services

Every industry has some sort of tools or services that can help their readers.

You’ll help them understand what is out there, and give guidance on where their money is best spent.

Janice Hardy recently did a straightforward list of best tools for indie authors. While Nick Loper of Side Hustle Nation compiled a list of top black Friday deals for his readers.

Both provide value, and yet offer an opportunity to make affiliate sales in the end.

2. Product review

If there is a product or service you use that you think would benefit your readers, then write about your experience. You’ve built trust, so might as well guide them for or against any products you deem necessary.

Your post could include an in-depth review of one paid product or course, like Jeff Goins did when he discovered Scrivener and dropped Word.

Or, you can create a negative review of a product like Ana Hoffman did with her Empower Network review. Granted a negative review probably won’t help you make affiliate sales directly, but it sure does build trust. That way, the next time you review a product, your readers will truly be ready for your verdict.

3. Product comparison

In addition to reviewing individual products, people also love comparison reviews. Personally, these are my favorite, because those who are interested in reading a comparison review are usually ready to buy, but aren’t sure which one.

By creating the article that helps to sway them towards one, you have the best chance of getting that final affiliate commission.

To see how this works in practice, check out the comparison of Smahswords and Draft2Digital from the SelfPublishing.com team.

4. Favorite books

If you can’t think of any product or service, you can always create a list of books as a post too. No matter what genre or niche you write in, there is an applicable set of books you can talk about.

It could be a giant themed list like Stephen King’s 96 Books for Aspiring Writers. Whether you write about technical or creative, there will always be applicable books out there for you to talk about.

Bonus Tip: An Amazon Affiliate link to a book doesn’t sound like it makes much money. However, you get a percentage of anything that person buys on Amazon within 24 hours of clicking your link.

5. Resources page

A resources page is a critical page to have on your website, and it’s proven to be extremely profitable. If you want to make affiliate sales, just ask Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income (SPI) how he does it.

Pat openly shares that his Resources page is his number one source of affiliate income (and have you seen this guy’s income reports?).

Here on Make a Living Writing, Carol Tice calls her resource page “Products I Love” in the navigation bar and lists the top products, services and books to help authors earn an income.

Just be sure to list products and services you truly have used and recommend. (Note: Obviously, a resources page is different than a blog post. But you can blog about the products and services you use featured on your resources page, and update this page from time to time as another way to make affiliate sales.)

Blogging to make affiliate sales: Your turn

No matter what niche your blog is in, these types of articles can help you make affiliate sales.

These types of blog posts do not require you to lower your standards or become a salesman. Instead they offer a new type of assistance to your readers and give you the opportunity to turn a bit of extra profit.

So, take a look at your niche, and ask yourself, what tools, services or books could your readers benefit from and which of the above blog posts would fit the bill.

Are you blogging to make affiliate sales, or just getting started? Let’s discuss in the comments below.

Small Blog, Big Income: Earn Money from your blog!

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38 Comments

  1. Jane

    Carol, thank for a great post!

    I already started to work on resources page. Hope it will turn out well.

    Jane

    Reply
  2. Clara Mathews

    Thanks for these tips on making more income from affiliate sales. I am currently working a resource page for one of my websites. I will link upcoming product reviews to the resource page. Hopefully, I’ll start seeing the results ($$$) from this strategy.

    Reply
  3. Kimberly Smith

    Well, this was a very pleasant surprise! It’s nice to see the great Dave Chesson on any blog, let alone this one. I’m also loving the Den! So far, so good with everything.

    Reply
    • Carol Tice

      I’ve learned a lot from Dave, love KDP Rocket, which brings a discpline to honing topics that I really didn’t have before. I got to take a long Skype call with him once and it was awesome to learn from him. 😉

  4. Tom

    I have been trying my luck at affiliate sales and having some success. Have been playing around with content for a while now and realized just how important it is not to forget the marketing aspect of affiliate marketing. I haven’t considered looking into books but have begun to create my own 😉
    Great post.

    Reply
    • Dave Chesson

      Nice Tom and good luck with that. Promoting your own book is always a good move on your own site.

    • Carol Tice

      Tom, most serious affiliate sales — where you earn $10K or something in one campaign — happen on marketing emails. The post ideas in here are good ways to make what’s usually a much smaller amount, but without having to hard-sell your audience. Both approaches have their place.

  5. Neal Eckert

    Thanks for the info on affiliate marketing, Dave, and for sharing your experience. I especially liked your advice of incorporating affiliate sales right into blog articles.

    I haven’t built up the audience for this type of marketing yet, but I like the approach.

    Occasionally, I still stumble across a site with decent traffic but with absurd ads on it like “how to make your skin look 40 years younger using this one weird trick.”

    In my mind, ads like that make your audience lose respect for you. I don’t care how much money I could make from that stuff (which I’m guessing isn’t very much these days). It’s never going on my site.

    That said, I like the clean feel of affiliate sales. You don’t need to feel like a sleazy sales person. You’re simply helping people and making money in the process–Not a bad dea1 🙂 Thanks again, Dave!

    Reply
    • Carol Tice

      The key for me, Neal, has been limiting what I affiliate sell to:

      1) Products & services directly relevant to my readers and my blog topic (NOT random ‘skin secrets’ crap)
      2) Producst & services I PERSONALLY have used and can recommend

      At this point, I get many, MANY offers every week, and sticking to these rules has helped me to affiliate sell with integrity, feel good about everything I DO sell, and keep my reputation as someone whose site isn’t slathered with ads. I highly recommend being selective about what you affiliate sell!

      Also, there are a lot of real tiny offers, like getting 25% commission on some $7 ebook — trust me, that’s not going to be worth your time. Good affiliates look for 50% commissions on proven, big-ticket items, $300-$1000 and up — where it’s worth it to take the reputation risk and take time selling it to your audience.

      I’m one of those people who slapped up an Amazon book cart when I started my blog, like everyone else. I can save you the trouble! Unless you have a TON of traffic, it’s unlikely that’s going to add up to much cash for you — but it does annoy readers.

    • Neal Eckert

      That’s great, Carol. That just seems like the purest form. Affiliate sell what meets your blog purpose/you can personally attest are great products.

      I’ll definitely store this info in my hat for later.

      By the way, thanks for your article in the 2016 Writer’s Market guide (Earn a Full-Time Income From Blogging). I’ve read it six or seven times and still refer back to it.

      As a newer blogger, it can sometimes be tough to see the big picture without your eyes glazing over. What you wrote helps to put everything into perspective without the eyes glazing over part. 🙂

    • Carol Tice

      I think they’ve now PRINTED that article in several editions of The Writer’s Market! I wish they would let me update it already… 😉

    • Dave Chesson

      I little rule of thumb: If you’re creating a niche site, then Adsense is okay. But if it’s an authority blog, then NO WAY Jose – bad form.

    • Carol Tice

      100% agree — thanks for that distinction.

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