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17 Common Mistakes Affiliate Marketers Make

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Successful affiliate marketing requires an in-depth understanding of the industry, patience, and an effective content strategy.

The possibilities for making money are endless.

Getting affiliate marketing right from the start is the key to building a successful business.

In other words, you must avoid the most fundamental and costly errors that beginners commonly make.

The following post will outline the top 17 affiliate marketing mistakes.

In the long run, you are more likely to succeed as an affiliate marketer if you avoid these mistakes.

1. Not selecting a profitable niche.

The key to the success of your affiliate marketing business is to choose a profitable and well-defined niche.

The ability to narrow your focus by selecting a niche allows you to target a smaller but more targeted audience.

As a result, your business will grow and you will maximize your profits.

2. Picking a niche that is much too broad.

Successful online businesses start by choosing a broad niche.

Once they have chosen a niche they then specialize further within it.

A niche like personal finance can be very lucrative, but it is also very broad.

In personal finance, getting out of debt would be a sub-niche.

When you target a specific niche, you will be able to build topical authority in that niche, which is crucial for search engine optimization (SEO).

Moreover, if you are an expert on a topic such as debt, you can also write about closely related topics such as saving money, managing debt, and budgeting.

It will be much easier to build trust and authority around a certain niche if you are laser-focused on it.

Identifying your perfect audience and connecting with them will also be straightforward.

In addition to being able to sell more, you will also have more authority, authority, and influence within your target community.

3. Choosing a niche you are not interested in. 

Choosing a niche merely because it is a high paying niche is not going to help you make money from affiliate marketing.

The reason for this is because you won’t enjoy discussing or writing about topics within that niche.

If you aren’t interested in learning more about a niche, it will be impossible for you to create content that will engage your audience.

If you don’t have the motivation, you won’t succeed even if you know exactly what needs to be done. It will be insignificant to you.

4. Trying to sell too many random products.

It is imperative to pick affiliate products that are right for your site.

Having more ads does not necessarily mean more sales.

The excessive amount of ads will negatively affect your site’s user experience, leaving your readers frustrated.

If you pick multiple random products, you will fail at affiliate marketing quickly.

If you have a clearly defined niche, your products should be relevant to that niche.

Partner with affiliate programs that align with your niche.

The products you promote should be relevant to your audience’s needs for your affiliate marketing business to succeed.

5. Not paying attention to SEO

It is extremely vital that you, as an affiliate marketer, ensure your website does not contain anything that would prevent the major search engines from properly indexing your site.

In other words, you should avoid anything that negatively impacts organic search results.

Even though social media can help you drive traffic to your website, SEO is the most efficient way to reach your target audience.

The more targeted, organic traffic you receive, the higher your sales will be.

6. Picking products that aren’t evergreen.

One of the biggest mistakes you can make in affiliate marketing is investing in products that become irrelevant after a few months.

In addition, these products may earn money only once or twice a year.

If you want to build a sustainable affiliate marketing business, you will need evergreen products that remain relevant year-round.

The fastest way to determine whether a product is seasonal is to use Google Trends.

Enter your topic and see what the search trends show.

Consider, for example, if you searched for wool coats using the 5-year trend, you would notice that interest in the topic increases during the winter season, but disappears for the rest of the year.

Wool coats are not an evergreen niche.

Google Trends for wool coats

On the other hand, if you search for keto diet, you’ll find that demand has remained relatively stable over the past five years.

Google trends for keto diet

7. Making a website that emphasizes products rather than problems or passions.

It is never a good idea to have a poorly designed website.

If your website focuses on a specific product line like iPhone accessories, the growth of your business will be stunted.

When your business becomes too specific, you no longer have the opportunity to grow and expand.

Your range of products will become constrained.

Additionally, such a website would only publish product-focused content rather than addressing the needs of your audience and connecting them with products that can be used to reach prospects at different stages of the marketing funnel.

Design your website so that it appeals to the interests and problems of your audience and includes links to relevant products.

You can also build your site around the problems or passions of your audience in order to target prospects at various stages of the buying funnel.

8. Making decisions based solely on how much commission you will earn per sale.

The products you choose will determine your success as an affiliate marketer.

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to promote a product that you don’t understand just because it is a high-paying category.

Affiliate marketing is about establishing trust and earning referrals. 

In other words, if you recommend a low-quality product because it pays a high commission, you will break that trust, and your audience will stop paying attention to your recommendations.

Promoting products you’ve used is the best way to encourage people to buy them.

You will be able to discuss the products confidently because you will have first-hand experience.

Persuading others by sharing personal stories is one of the best ways to persuade them, since you can demonstrate how it has helped you.

As an added benefit, you can show the results of your efforts as well.

9. Poorly written content.

If you do business online, you need to understand what makes a website susceptible to Google penalties. Ranking in search engine results will be determined largely by the quality of your website’s content.

Despite the fact that Google takes into account over 200 ranking factors when determining the ranking of websites, the quality of your site’s content is a top ranking factor. In Google Panda’s algorithm update, quality content was at the core.

It is crucial to organic search rankings. Whatever niche you’re in, the content of your website plays a vital role in generating sales online. There will be a categorization of your site as low quality if it has a certain amount of sub-par content, and it will not appear high in the search results.

Panda was designed primarily to target websites with little original content. As of 2014, Google defined bad content as “thin or duplicate content with little or no added value”. Content must offer value to the reader.

You’ll do better in organic searches when you produce quality content like this, and you’ll keep more visitors to your site.

Creating a poorly designed website.

The quality of the content on your affiliate marketing website will not matter if the site is poorly designed.

User experience, or UX, should be your primary focus.

For instance, overly complicated layouts, excessive use of fancy elements, and too many colors can quickly turn visitors away.

In addition, posting multiple banner ads on every page of your site will lead to a poor user experience and eventually a Google penalty.

Having an easy-to-navigate site is more important than anything fancy or complicated.

Not building a mailing list.

Building a list of email subscribers is an essential part of your affiliate marketing business.

It is ultimately what will drive more consistent traffic to your website.

Moreover, in the event that Google releases an algorithmic update that affects your organic search traffic, you will still have your email list of thousands of subscribers to fall back on.

Therefore, a list will reduce the impact of getting hit by a penalty.

Not divulging your affiliations.

FTC regulations require affiliates to make their relationships with brands, merchants, or products clear and conspicuous.

To put it simply, if you place an affiliate link on your website, you must let your site visitors know that it may result in commission.

Make it clear to your site visitors that this may occur.

The disclosure must be obvious and unmistakeable.

In addition, you should use hashtags that are related to your affiliate posts if you are going to promote affiliate products on social media.

In other words, you need to include hashtags like #sponsored, #paidad, #promotion,  and #ad.

Ignoring affiliate partner research.

You must do your research before signing up with an affiliate network, or else you may end up with a bad partnership.

Not all affiliate networks are created equal.

Partnering with a network with a poor reputation on review sites can be detrimental to your business.

There have been complaints about networks not paying affiliates for sales.

Another network may cease operation or discontinue its affiliate program abruptly.

You may end up in a bad position if you don’t do your due diligence before becoming an affiliate.

Having a poor understanding of your audience.

Understanding your ideal target customer is essential for a successful affiliate marketing campaign.

By knowing the motivations, wants and needs of a specific audience, you can focus your efforts on attracting them.

Having an understanding of your buyer personas will help you communicate and engage with them effectively.

Not building a relationship with your affiliate manager.

It is important that, when it comes to affiliate marketing, you avoid duplicating what someone else is doing.

Establishing a relationship with your affiliate manager can give you access to programs and discounts that other affiliates may not be able to receive.

Try to distinguish yourself from other affiliates by developing innovative strategies.

For example, you can focus on building relationships with your audience by…

  • Work with product creators to negotiate special discount codes
  • Co-brand sales pages with merchants

Spamming your affiliate links.

Spreading your affiliate links all over the web would make you look desperate.

Affiliates often post affiliate links in social media groups that have nothing to do with the products they are marketing.

You are wasting your time by promoting your links this way, since no one will click on them.

For more strategic ways of promoting your links, click here.

Keeping your affiliate links uncloaked.

Affiliate links look, well, like affiliate links.

These links are ugly…

Here’s what they typically look like: hotgamecotroller.com/?a_hu-id-78457747478 

This would look terrible in your blog post or on any page of your website.

It is possible to cloak affiliate links with your own domain name so that your visitors don’t know that they are affiliate links.

If your blog post contains a large number of promotional links, search engines such as Google will not rank it.

Furthermore, some people avoid clicking affiliate links and instead click links that don’t seem to be affiliate links.

Simple URLs and Pretty Link Lite are WordPress plugins that can be used to cloak affiliate links.

Final Thoughts

Do you think you have committed one or more of these affiliate marketing mistakes?

In that case, re-examine your content to determine where you can make improvements along the way to becoming successful at affiliate marketing.

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