How to Build an Affiliate Marketing Website From Scratch – Part 5

eMail Marketing

This is the fifth and final blog in the building an affiliate website series.

In this post I will show you some of the work I have been doing to make my site more recognizable and better at selling the affiliate products I include.

If you haven't read the first 4 parts yet, I suggest you start there.  Just click the button to go to part 1 now.

Jay's Fifth Webinar

Jay Neil's fifth webinar in his current five part series was a good one.

As you know by now, I am following along with my own website and applying what he teaches. In this blog series I share what I am doing with you. To get the most out of the training, you really should watch Jay's webinar replays too. They are all available for non-stop viewing of the whole series now.

The main topics for this weeks post include:

  • Recap of what we have done so far
  • Setting up email marketing
  • Selling a website
  • Looking ahead

This will be the last post in this  series but I will continue to publish other tutorials in the future..

Series Recap

Build an Affiliate Marketing Website

The Fun Tech Gadgets site has come a long way in the last five weeks.

I started with a basic idea of what I wanted the site to be about - tech gadgets - and researched the niche to narrow my audience.

I did some keyword research to choose a domain name .

I then purchased that domain quickly and easily from Wealthy Affiliate siteDomains and hosted my new site there as well.

I did an automatic WordPress Install to get my new site online. Then I chose a theme (and later changed it) and added a few key plugins.

I set up All in One SEO to help me optimize my search engine ranking and activated the other feature modules within the plugin.

Then I created the first few pages for my new site and added basic navigation menus so visitors can find their way around.

I continued to refine the site and did a little branding. I bought a logo from fivver.com and added it to my header.

I added my sitemap to Google and Bing, did a Fetch as Google and have my site indexed in the major search engines.

You Can Have Your Own Online Business in Less Than One Day!
Time

Consider that, while it has been 5 weeks of posts, the actual time I have spent working on the site is under 6 hours!

Think about that for a minute. In less than one work day, you could have your own affiliate marketing business online and ready to make you a steady stream of income!

That is pretty amazing if you ask me.

the sites  not done of course. There will be ongoing tasks to perform like adding new content and improving SEO. But, in just a short time, the site is a real, working online marketing business.

Email Marketing

​After a website, email is the most important part of a good online marketing campaign and should be started as early as possible.

To set up a campaign, I will need an autoresponder service, a follow up email series and opt-in forms on my website.

Autoresponder Service

I am an AWeber user and I will be using it for Fun Tech Gadgets as well as for this Affiliate Marketing for Retirees site. The examples and screen shots will be from that service.

​If you don't have a email service account yet, I suggest you sign up for one as early in your affiliate marketing career as you can.

AWeber is good but there are also other choices like GetResponse that will also work well for you. These are the two I am most familiar with but if you do some searching you can find others,

Create a List

My first step is to log into my AWeber account and go to the Manage Lists sectiopn where I can create a new list just for this new website.

Create New List

Click on images that show a magnifying glass to see them full size.

The next screen is where we fill out the details for the list ownership. You will have to give a physical address so, is you work out of your home, you might want to consider a post office box.

List Ownership Details

Click "Next Step" to move on.

On the next screen I will give my list a name and a short description of what subscribers can expect.

Name The List

Again, press "Next Step" to move on.

The next screen is where I can edit the subscriber confirmation email Whatever email service you choose, make sure you double opt-in. That just means that anyone signing up for your list must confirm that subscription. I keeps you out of trouble and makes your subscribers feel better about their action.

Confirmation eMail

Click "Approve Message and Create List" and it is ready to accept subscribers..

Autoresponder eMail Series

​Now that we have an empty list, the next step is to create an autoresponder series of emails that will be sent to new subscribers. This series will be sent over a period of several days. You might also see this kind of spaced series called a "Drip Campaign."

To create the campaign, I go to Messages -> Campaign. There are no campaigns set up for this list so I click on "Create a Campaign" to make one.

Create Campaign

Next, I need to give the new campaign a name and click "Create."

Name the Campaign

On the next screen, I tell the mailer to start sending the messages in the campaign as soon as someones subscribes. This is the initial series that goes out to every subscriber so that makes sense to use as a trigger.

The other trigger might be useful to me later. I starts sending am email series out when a tag is applied to a subscriber account. For example, I might want to do a future campaign that only goes out to people who have commented on my website. I could add a "Commented" tag and use that as a trigger for that series.

On Subscribe

Now I can drag and drop blocks from the left side of the screen to build my marketing campaign. This is a nice feature that AWeber added recently and it makes the task easy.

The first thing I want to do is send a welcome message to each new subscriber so I will drag the "Send Message" task t my campaign.

AWeber reminds me that I haven't written any messages yet and gives me a link to go off and do that.

Send Message Task

I write a brief welcome message to send as the first contact. I don't try to sell anything at this time. I am just trying to build a little trust and a feeling of participation.

I added the logo to continue the branding process.

Welcome Message

When I save and close this message, I am taken back to the campaign where I now have the choice to select a message to attach.

Choose Message

From here I just continue to build the full campaign. The second and third messages lead my subscriber to places where they can view my website and buy products using my affiliate links. I ma still not doing any hard selling - just a gentle steer in the right direction.

I also built in a two day delay between the first two messages and a three day delay between 2 and 3. I don't want to bury the new subscriber with emails. If I do that they will unsubscribe and I wont get them back.

The Campaign

Now I can save and close this campaign.

Sign Up Forms

​There is one more task to do on AWeber before I go back to the website. I need to create an opt-in form. I wont actually use it as is, I have other tools for building forms, but I will need the data from it in the forms I do use.

I click on "Sign Up Forms" and then "Create Your First Sign Up Form."

Create Form

Because I don't plan on using this as my opt-in form I can keep it simple and use the default. The only change I made was to edit the field labels. I changed "Name" to "Your Name" and Email to "Your Email." I think it is clearer and more personal that way.

Basic Form

If you don't plan on using another opt-in form editor, you can build some nice looking ones from the templates included on this page. That is your choice.

On the next page I can change what the new subscriber sees after they complete the opt-in form. I can make a custom Thank You page later but for now I will just leave these set to the default.

Form Settings

I will use the code from the last page when I get back to the Fun Tech Gadgets website so I will just leave it open for now and explain it when I need it.

Publish Code
Opt-IN Forms

Now I can finally head over to WordPress and add an opt-in form to the website. I use Thrive Leads for my opt-in forms so, since most of you don't, I will just show one basic form here. If you want to learn more about using Thrive Content Builder and Thrive Leads, you can see my previous posts on the subject. I like to use the 3-step funnel approach that I talked about in 3 Step Lead Generation Funnel - Step by Step. If you want a more basic introduction, you can go to Easy Landing Pages - Build Your Own.

If you want to use the form straight out of AWeber, I suggest you spend some time working with the templates and follow the AWeber training. Other email services like GetResponse will work a little differently so follow the training offered by the service you use.

To add a simple form in Thrive Content Builder, I first set up an opt-in by opening Thrive Opt-in from the WordPress dashboard. Then I go back to my AWeber tab in the browser and copy the Raw HTML version of the publish code and paste it into the Thrive Opt-in form. I click the "Generate Fields" button and publish the form.

Thrive Opt-in

I can use the opt-in form anywhere I want in my content. In this case I just design an lead generation form right on my homepage and add the opt-in form right where I want it.

Placing the Opt-in

As I said, this is the very basic way to do it. Later I could adding the other two pages I need to make this a 3 step funnel. Since I have already written about that in my earlier post, I wont repeat it here.

What to Write in Your Emails

This has bee a very bare bones introduction to email marketing and has only covered some of the mechanics of adding a campaign. There is a whole lot more you can learn about it. One very good place to start is with the free AWeber email marketing course What to Write in Your Emails. You don't have to be an AWeber subscriber to get the course. You will learn a lot from it regardless of the email service you eventually choose.

Just one final point before I wrap up email marketing. Always test your forms! Go to your website and sign up for your own list just like a visitor would. Make sure every step of the process works the way it should. It is the best way to catch and errors before your potential subscribers do.

Selling Websites

Dollar Sign

In Jay's final webinar on Wealthy Affiliate, he explained that his long term goal for the site he built is to sell it. I have never done that so I don't have any special insight but here is a summery of what Jay is planning to do to make his new website saleable.

  • Add 10 blog posts
  • Tweak the logo
  • Define the colors, fonts, images sizes used (what he calls a brand guide)
  • Rewrite the initial email series to include more substance
  • Add additional images
  • Create a keyword list
  • Continue monetizing the site with Amazon and other affiliate links
  • Add social media channels for the site (Facebook page, Twitter account, G+ account, etc)

After that is done, the next step would be to put a value on the site. With a new site that has not gained a lot of traffic or sales, the value lies in it's future prospects. Based on the tasks above, just how well can it do going forward.

With a good site in place but little traffic and sales, the value is probably around $500 or $600 dollars.

Good places to offer the site for sale include social media and websites like Flippa.com.

If you are interested in building new sites and selling them, it can be a profitable way to make money with your website building skills.

Looking Ahead

Direction Choice

So, what is the future for Fun Tech gadgets? I am not completely sure yet. I have considered several options and decided on a tentative plan, It may change in the future though.

I seriously considered going forward with it and using it to generate affiliate sales. But, I just don't have the time or enough interest in the niche to keep maintaining it. I have projects I am already working on and others I really want to pursue. So, that is out for now.

I also thought about selling it as Jay is going to do. The problem with that is that I need to keep it online for now so people viewing this tutorial in the future can still view the site.

I could also just let the site expire when the time comes and drop it then.

After consideration of these and other option, I have decided to keep the site online but not do much work on it going forward. I will probably use it as an example for future tutorials. It could be my go to training site.

If you visit Fun Tech Gadgets in the future, you will see disclaimers explaining that it is not an active site and will not be updated frequently. I will also change the email list series to explain that it is only for training purposes and recommend that peopel unsubscribe right away.

Series Wrap Up

That is all there is to starting your very own affiliate marketing business right?

Well, yes and no. I have given you the basic information you need to get started with your own affiliate marketing website. But, like every business, there is always more to learn. I hope you will continue to visit Affiliate Marketing for Retirees to learn more.

My number one recommendation for anyone considering affiliate marketing as a real way to make money is to join Wealthy Affiliate and be part of the greatest online community of like minded people that you can ever find.


Did you learn anything from this 5 part series? Have you built your own website? What question do you have that I didn't cover?

Your comments and question are always very welcome.

Tom


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