As an affiliate, your main objective is to sell the products and services offered by your partner merchants. Unless you can do this, you can never hope to make a significant amount of money with affiliate marketing programs. So how do you boost sales? All things being equal, you will need to increase your site traffic before you can experience more sales. By the law of averages, the more people are aware of the products you are offering, the more products you will sell.
Here are a few tips that can help you boost your site traffic:
1. Optimize for the search engines. The most successful sites on the internet are the most visible ones. Now there are various ways to achieve increased visibility on the internet, but the foremost method is that of search engine optimization. The details are too technical to discuss here, but the purpose of search engine optimization (SEO) is to help your site achieve higher rankings on the search engines. If you have used a search engine, you will notice that any particular keyword search will return thousands, if not millions of results. Most people will not bother to browse through all those results; they will prefer to look into the sites already displayed. Statistically speaking, the sites listed on the first results page will garner the highest amount of traffic, putting those sites in a better position to make money.
2. Joining internet directories. While internet directories are no longer as widely used as search engines, some people do use them. It is important that you do not overlook the potential customers that these directories can bring to your site. To join an internet directory, you will have to submit your site for approval, and you will be categorized accordingly.
3. Provide fresh content. Your site must continually be updated if you expect your visitors to keep coming back. Your site must have useful content, as well as tools that will help your target audience. Make your site as easy to navigate as possible, and be sure that your links work the way that they should. There is nothing that frustrates people more than a “broken” website, and once your site has been labeled as such, chances are slim that many people will want to come back.
4. Build an online community. In other words, build relationships with your potential customers. Make your visitors feel welcome and appreciated, and they are likely to come back. Be interested in solving their problems and they will thank you with their business.
Making your affiliate marketing program work is really not that much different from operating a traditional business. The only way you can keep your customers is to treat them right. The Japanese have a saying: The customer is God. As long as you treat your customers with respect and exert effort in trying to meet their needs, you will find that they will be more than willing to help you with yours.
Affiliate Marketing and Requesting Customer Support
As a webmaster, you are bound to run into problems. Even though you have spent a good amount of time learning the affiliate marketing trade, sooner or later you will run into some challenges that you will need help to resolve. Areas such as e-mail services, affiliate marketing software, and online services are often particularly troublesome.
Unfortunately, getting help is not often easy, even from your web host. But there are ways to make the process simpler for both sides. Here are some questions that you might consider before you call your service provider:
Who are you? This is a common problem. Many people report their problems without providing their personal information, such as their username. Unless the support team knows who you are, how do you expect them to solve your problem?
What is the problem? Be specific. Identify which product or service is not working properly. Keep in mind that you are just one of your web host’s customers. Unless you can pinpoint the problem, chances are pretty slim that you will receive appropriate and timely help.
What software are you using? Your web host’s support team will need information on the software you are using. For instance, they will ask you what type of system you are using in your computer. It is a well-known fact that certain applications do not work well on certain systems. Be sure to give any relevant details about the services or applications that you use.
When did the problem start? Identifying the time you became aware of the problem is important. If you have recently made any changes to your system and the problem appeared soon after, it is quite likely that particular change is the cause. Don’t withhold information from the support team; every bit of knowledge is crucial to identifying the source of difficulty.
What have you tried to fix the problem? If you have attempted to fix the problem yourself, be sure to include an account of your attempts in your report. Letting the support team know what you’ve already done will help them save time, and also make a more accurate diagnosis of what’s wrong.
Have you kept it simple? For security purposes, some support systems do not allow HTML display. To avoid having your e-mail intercepted, it is best to send your messages in plain text format.
Remember to be polite. Keep in mind that the support team is composed of human beings – they certainly will not appreciate if you maltreat them. Never insult them; never use profanity. If you want your problem to be resolved, it is better to hold your peace and act civilly. Despite what you may think, you are just one of their customers -- they reserve the right to discontinue their services to you whenever they like.
These pointers will not always get you the speedy service that you deserve, but they can certainly help.
Affiliate marketing is a difficult business enough without making enemies. By taking a little time to see things from your support team’s point of view, you can drastically improve the quality of service you get.