Hey there! You have been probably hearing a lot about affiliate marketing lately. If you are reading this article, consider yourself as a soon-to-be-affiliate. Whether you want to start earning more on a side or leave the corporate nine-to-five job and start working for yourself — consider yourself lucky because our goal is to show you how you can turn your life around.

So, where do you start​

  1. First, you need to decide if you really want to become an affiliate marketer. And you know what? We think you really do ;)
  2. Explore verticals. We will tell you more about them in a bit.
  3. Determine your budget and choose the type of traffic you want to work with.
  4. Choose a vertical, affiliate program, and offers.
  5. Launch your first campaign, analyze the results, optimize it, and continue.
  6. Draw a conclusion.

Small intro​

Rumor has it that affiliates make a lot of money. Is it so? Where should you start and what do you need to know exactly? How can you become one?

First of all, I would like to point out that there are many courses on the Internet. I cannot say that they are all useful, necessary, and essential. Bareilly any of them are free. How can you possibly know if this person actually is an expert in running the offers? Most of these paid courses are useless and have nothing in common with a real affiliate marketing world.

Step 1. What needs to be done​

First, you need to study and choose the vertical you will work with. Verticals are niches that are clearly separated from each other and each has its own characteristics, different performance indicators, and different tools when working with them. Therefore, you need to choose what you want to fund. Often newbies have some sort of experience in targeted advertising of goods, perhaps SEO promotion or even SMM. If you have this experience, consider yourself an ideal affiliate marketer. Because you will need everything at once. You need to know how to write promo-texts, set up targeted advertising, and promote products using SEO optimization. Oh yes, you will also need to have some basic Photoshop skills.

What verticals are there​

  • Finance
  • Goods
  • Gambling
  • Nutra
  • Travel
  • Dating
You should choose something that you are more or less familiar with. Ask yourself — what kind of advertising you come across more often — this is a good guideline for your future vertical. Why? You have at least a little expertise in it, and it's always a huge con!

What is the essence of affiliate marketing?​

To summarize in a few words, it is “bought cheaper — sold for a good price”.

What do you buy? — Traffic.

What is the traffic? — Users.

How does it look in practice: So, let’s say, you have already chosen a vertical, decided on investments. This is when you need to look for an affiliate program where you will get an offer. Actually, you will "run traffic" on it.

Why do you need an affiliate network?​

A direct advertiser will require you to have some statistics for the past periods in slices; they have strict requirements, and you need to get some “experience” before you can start working with them. And what’s the best way to get it? Correct, you need to work: drive traffic, optimize campaigns, test new offers and banners, optimize again, and so on. And it’s best to do all this for the in-house offers from the affiliate network.

Everything seems to be easy, but there is always a huge "BUT." Let's dive into it.

How to choose an affiliate network​

You must clearly understand that an affiliate network is basically a reseller of offers. What does it mean? There are many advertisers who do not directly give offers to newbies and even to many average affiliates. Since you need really large volumes and good traffic to work directly with an advertiser, you only have one way out — joining the Affiliate Program the offers come from.

It is important to understand the main indicator is not the number of offers and not even the bid per offer — you can easily find the same offers in different affiliate networks. Initially, you should really look into different affiliate networks, chat with their support, check the hold period for their offers, the type of payments, how many offers for different GEOs they have, and so on.

What is hold?​

It means the time needed to get paid from the moment of the conversion.

Why does the affiliate program have it and what is the average waiting time?

A hold period is needed in order to check your traffic to ensure it is not fraudulent.

We have seen this so many times — a person joins the affiliate network thinking they found a way to make easy money. They earned some cash, but they do not stay for too long — even the sneakiest schemes get revealed, and the network simply bans them.

It is important to understand that if your conversion has not been approved, it doesn't mean the network is trying to screw you over. It’s simply a reseller of offers from a direct advertiser. If your lead has not been approved it means there has been a suspicion of fraudulent traffic, and your lead will not be credited. You always need to be honest, this is the only way you can grow from a newcomer to a middle affiliate, and then even put together a team. Therefore, we continue further, because you want to know everything, not just this boring part, right?

First, let's look at traffic sources. What are they?

Among the affiliates in Russia, Asia, and the CIS countries, many use free traffic: SEO, email marketing, spamming in messengers and social networks, including various sites: blogs and vlogs.

There are many types of paid traffic:​

  • Search traffic: contextual advertising in Google, Yandex, Bing, Yahoo, and etc.;
  • Social traffic or targeted advertising on social networks: Vk, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, Reddit, and etc;
  • Display. Banners on various sites and apps;
  • Pop-ups. Annoying ads that open up themselves in a pop-up window. It often has "misclick" and it does not always work, but if the traffic is good, it will definitely work;
  • Video Ads. Youtube, Vimeo, TikTok and various video ad networks;
  • Teaser networks;
  • Native in-app advertising.
When working with paid traffic, you can always run various a/b tests. Then you just have to keep your eye out on the stat, keep implementing new strategies to improve your ads, optimize them, and then repeat.

Free traffic does not always allow you to run different types of tests. In addition, paid traffic is easily scalable: if the bundle is working in a good way, increase your traffic and increase your budget.

So, from what I said above, what should be done? First of all, you need to really assess yourself and not chase the unattainable. Do you have enough money to launch an advertising campaign for 10-30-50-100-1,000 USD? Excellent. Now what? What will you choose as a source and what kind of offers should you consider?

Let’s suppose you have decided on the type of traffic and budget, what’s next? Where is the best place to choose an offer?

Here you need to clearly understand your vertical. Since not everything can be advertised on “mainstream” platforms, such as Google or Facebook. If you want to work with adult content, you will constantly face bans. It is good to use teaser networks, push notifications, banner ads, email traffic for adult offers — they work the best. I can say the same about a dating vertical, but it’s easy to run any type of traffic with it, especially if you use the right banners and pre-landers, you can bypass a moderation a lot quicker on Google and Facebook.

How to choose an offer​

As mentioned above, dating offers are incredibly diverse. To choose an offer that will convert well, you need to join a trusted affiliate program, for example, Affmy. It is also worth mentioning that Affmy is a direct advertiser, which means that you will find exclusive offers with high payouts, and earn more.

What payment models are there​

  1. SOI = Single opt-in. The user filled out the form and clicked the registration button;
  2. DOI = Double opt-in. The user has to not only fill out the registration form but also confirm the email;
  3. PPS = Pay Per Sale. Receiving commission on sales or the amount spent by the user;
  4. Revshare. Receiving payment (a certain percentage), from the purchase of a subscription or membership on the site.
Everything seems to be clear here. On my own behalf, I recommend SOI offers, since they are the simplest in terms of earnings, but often the cheapest, since payments for them range from $0.70 to $7.2.

Let’s take a look at some examples:​

EasyLay is Affmy’s exclusive! The landing page consists of a questionnaire. We tested everything, right down to the fonts to create a design that would convert. Since EasyLay is Affmy's in-house offer, you will receive the highest bid.
This is also Affmy's exclusive! You will receive the highest rates on the market and the opportunity to work on non-standard terms; It has an attractive landing with endless photos of hot girls and a really simple flow - to start talking to them, you just need to leave your mail; The offer is localized and even covers the German-speaking regions of Switzerland.

What you need to know about dating​

Dating is a vertical where offers allow users to find their match. The point of this vertical is to get users to register on various dating sites. In turn, the advertiser will pay a certain amount for each user you refer.

Dating offers can be divided into:
  • Mainstream;
  • Adult;
  • Webcams;
  • Niche
The most popular are mainstream and adult.

The mainstream can easily bypass moderation on different platforms. Adult offers are a little more complicated, but the rates for these offers are often higher. Also worth highlighting: webcams, online games (erotic), and niche offers (gay, Asian, etc.).

What else is worth knowing — free traffic for dating offers works, BUT! Testing campaigns will be difficult. Since the search for the source, a/b test, analysis, retest — all this takes a lot of time.

What's easier? — Paysite.

Why? You quickly test offers, creatives, and a platform, find a converting link and start running an offer, then your task is to scale and increase income.

There is a wonderful formula by which you can estimate the amount of required traffic per test a channel:

Let’s say we have the following conversion rates:
  • average CTR - from 0,1 to 1%
  • average CR - 2 to 15% and in
  • average Payout - $ 2.
Then we need to calculate how many impressions are needed to get one conversion:
  • CR = Conversions / Clicks * 100%
  • CTR = Clicks / Impressions * 100% -> Clicks = CTR * Impressions / 100%
  • CR = Conversions / (CTR * Impressions)
  • Conversions = CR * CTR * Impressions
Accordingly, to get one conversion, we need 1 / (CR * CTR) impressions. Since our CTR is from 0,1 to 1%, and CR is from 2 to 15%, we need a minimum of 666 impressions and a maximum of 50,000 impressions.

As you can see, you need from 700 to 50,000 impressions. Then we calculate how many conversions are needed in total. If we have two dollars, a thousand conversions will give us 2,000 dollars in earnings, and not pure earnings, but revenue. And to earn $2,000, we need to get 1-50 million impressions.

Now let's take a step back and, having this information, estimate the time spent. The conclusion is obvious. By purchasing paid traffic, we can test from 1 to 30 creatives and campaigns daily, quickly find bundles, and keep the most successful ones.

What if it doesn't convert​

Change creatives and traffic sources. Narrow targeting, the more you set it up, the better traffic you get, therefore, the higher the chance of finding a converting link.

What should I do when I find a bundle?​

Scale those offers where conversions happen. Cut off low-quality sources, analyze statistics, and continue to scale, buying more traffic, and increasing the number of leads.


Let's sum up​

So, we talked about the basics of affiliate marketing: what traffic is, an offer, a bundle, an affiliate program, a payment model, how to choose an offer, what to do with statistics, converting bundles, and whatnot.

It should be noted that dating is gaining popularity now and will always be the top-converting vertical, because each person wants to find somebody, communicate, and even more, which is why if you are already driving traffic, then you should definitely take a closer look at this vertical.

And if you are just starting out, you should try it right away, as this is one of the simplest but most profitable verticals, especially now! Especially if you use trusted affiliate programs and traffic sources. Now, after reading this article, you can safely go to the Internet and conquer the dating vertical.

I wish you good luck and see you soon!