So, you want to promote affiliate links without a website?! In this article, we are going to cover 3 ways you can do just that. First, we are going to start with some basics of affiliate marketing, and then with that understanding laid out, we'll take a deeper dive into ways you can successfully promote affiliate links without a website.
The truth is a website does help… but it’s not the only way you’ll make money doing affiliate marketing. If you already have a following on a social media site, for example, why not try to monetize it right away!?
Affiliate Marketing for the Absolute Beginner
An affiliate marketer is simply a digital salesman. As a digital marketer, you will find yourself an audience (niche), deepen relationships through trust and rapport building, and then, recommend solutions (products) that will alleviate your audience’s problems.
The traditional way of going about this process of attracting an audience, building trust and providing solutions is through a website. The question is, can you still make money with affiliate marketing without having a website?!
In short, yes, you can! The truth is a site does help but it’s not the only way you’ll make money doing affiliate marketing. A website is not the only way to attract and engage with an audience, build trust, and offer solutions.
There is a big learning curve to becoming a webmaster, and building and managing a website property. It also takes time attracting an audience and getting them to trust you through the impersonal digital interface of a website…
Not everybody wants to become a webmaster, the alternatives I offer below may suit your personality and temperament more.
The three alternatives I’m going to offer you in this post are:
- Monetizing your social feeds
- Using free forums to make sales
- Creating videos that convert
Promote Affiliate Links Without a Website
1. Making Money on Social Media as an Affiliate Marketer
This one is relatively easy to use to promote affiliate links without a website:
If you already have built a strong report with a community on social media, why not try and monetize it?! You already have their trust and you have no doubt been exposed to the community’s problems. Perhaps you can solve some of your followers’ problems by finding a product that is designed to do just that.
What You Do
Sign up for an affiliate program to share offers your community would want. Everybody loves the idea of winning millions of $s, so why not sign up to Giantlottos.com’s affiliate program?! You make 50% of all ticket sales you refer.
Once you have been approved for an affiliate program you will be allocated an affiliate code. This code is then used to track your referrals so that you get credit. Your affiliate code is appended to the end the offer URL link you want to send your people to.
It is recommended that you mask the link using URL shorteners.
Now it’s time to do what you were born to do… share your thoughts, tips, or ideas in your social media channel, and don’t forget to include your affiliate link.
You can do this on any social media channel like a Facebook page or Pinterest board. Or, include your affiliate link with an appropriate photo on Instagram. This is probably not something you’d want to try on LinkedIn since that’s too professional…
… Some great options to try out are Google+, Reddit, and Twitter.
Facebook Example of Affiliate Marketing without a Blog or Site
Facebook is great for affiliate marketing because you’ve got:
- Live streaming video…
- Branded pages…
- Sponsored posts and ads…
- Instagram integration…
- Shopping cart integration…
- Over 1 billion active users…
Note: you can use the other social media channels to point back to your FB post.
If you do choose to use the other social media channels as your primary focus then focus on delivering a mix of freemium and teaser content. This is how you hook people, create a rapport and generally get them interested and engaged in the discussion. Now that you have their attention you can smoothly include an affiliate offer that is relevant to the conversation.
Here are some quick tips on doing affiliate marketing on social media channels:
- Don’t overdo it with the affiliate links, this will come across as spammy and will degrade trust quickly. Use a 1:10 ratio of your shares. Offer great value content and entertainment 10 times before you make an offer with your affiliate link attached.
- Create a review or a video with you using and engaging with the item/service to get people asking “what’s that?”
- Stick around and answer questions people may have about the offer.
- For an advanced tactic leverage other influencers’ audiences; work with other social media socialites to create some buzz around your promotion. When the time is right you can do the same for them with your audience.
2. Use Free Community Portals/Hub to do Affiliate Marketing without a Site
Use a “hub” to Promote affiliate links without a website.
What I am referring to here are:
- Web 2.0 sites: Websites that emphasize user-generated content and usability.
- Forums: An Internet forum, or message board, is an online discussion site. Examples: Reddit & Warrior Forum.
- Internet Q&A boards: Like, Quora.
- Chat rooms: describe any form of synchronous conferencing.
- Membership portals
Why not create a free account on one or more of these portals and use them as an affiliate website alternative. The upside is that they have active and passionate members you could befriend, influence then convert. There is a downside; there is a lack of control you have over distractions that will be placed in the way of your promotions (like ads).
Using a Hub to Make Money without a Website with Affiliate Marketing
There is too much variety in this category of “hub” to give you any details here – each hub has its own idiosyncrasies. If you are going to create content on a hub make sure there is some way for you to include your affiliate link.
If your hub of choice is structured much like a blog (see: hubpages.com) and you can include affiliate links, then make a helpful post into which you place your affiliate link (to Amazon, for example). Then, promoted the post on a FB page within the space, and spend a few bucks running your content as a sponsored post.
In most forums and Q&A sites, you can include an affiliate link in your signature section. When you answer a question on Quora, for example, you are answering a question that is providing a solution to a problem.
Because you have provided value to someone they may be interested in who you are, and their attention is drawn to your signature box. This is where you can strategically place your affiliate link.
This concept is applicable in many ways:
- The content goes on a hub
- It’s then promoted on social
- You build backlinks if it’s worthwhile
You may be thinking, “This is a lot of effort!” — creating content, promotion, etc. You may be thinking that the first example of affiliate marketing without a website sounded a lot easier?! But, this method gives you the advantage of on-going affiliate sales because your content lives on these hubs for a long while and people will continue to find the content.
You could even create a process:
- Create your main content on a Web 2.0 property.
- Link back to that page from a forum signature and join a discussion.
- Answer a topical question on Quora and link back.
Share 1, 2, and 3 at different times to build interest
This technique used to be used for link building, until Google gave that activity a slap. Those who weathered the Google slap storm shakeup are still doing OK for themselves. It’s one of your options for doing affiliate marketing without a blog or site, that’s for sure.
3. Converting with YouTube Videos
Use YouTubr to promote affiliate links without a website.
Your best all-around option for converting affiliate offers without a website is to create YouTube videos. YouTube and affiliate marketing are perfect if you’re not big on writing. You can often create little videos in about 5-10 minutes, too. This will give you lots of eyes on the affiliate offers.
YouTube has a lot going for it:
- It is the biggest video sharing platform on the net, with tons of traffic.
- It’s owned by Google which loves placing videos high up in search results.
- A video is quite quick and easy to create once you know how.
- You can build a following, and get advertisement money while you’re at it
- A popular channel will attract brands and businesses with offers who’ll want to do business with you.
Look at a lot of your favorite YouTube personalities… do they have a website?!
Many of them don’t. YouTube is their website.
As a YouTube content creator, you will promote your affiliate links by embedding “mentions in your video content. You do this with mentions, call-outs, or linked in the description.
Making affiliate money on YouTube – The Process:
- Choose what type of video you are going to make. Are you going to be on camera? Are you going to animate the video? Or, are you going to do a screen capture of a PowerPoint presentation?
- Brainstorm a list of niche topics, or write down the autosuggest keywords google delivers when you’re doing a google search query.
- Look on affiliate networks for products that solve a problem that is appropriate to the topic of the video.
- Write a script, edit it, and practice, practice, practice to nail the delivery.
- Shoot/record the video, upload it to YouTube, optimize in YouTube channels creator studio, and share it everywhere.
Hey, see our guide: YouTube Traffic Generation: A Beginner Guide to Video Production on a Budget
Answering specific questions – showing people how to solve their problems with various products – is a good avenue for making money with YouTube affiliate links. With enough optimization and viewer interest, your video will show up in search results. The video will keep sending people through your affiliate links to the product page, planting a cookie on their browser… when they purchase you will get credited.
Here’s the thing; the first few videos you record will suck. But stick with it, because if you do, you’ll start to find your own voice and style. In time your community of subscribers will grow if it’s nurtured.
As you become more established more affiliate opportunities will pop up, and your latest videos’ production quality will improve! Keep making sure it’s all good stuff.
What’s the Downside of Affiliate Marketing without a Website?
Ideally, you want to be doing these affiliate strategies with a blog or site. Considering how easy it is to make one these days (WordPress is the way to go). The cost is minimal, $20-$30 (you will, however, be paying in time as there is an initial learning curve). Once you have paid the time price of learning this very empowering technology, it will only take you 5-10 hours of your time getting a site together, with a few, small pieces of content.
You don’t get a lot of options with direct linking to affiliate offers since this practice tends to go against some programs terms & conditions, and may also go against the terms & conditions of the platforms you’re promoting your offers from.
Also, direct linking to offers deprives you of the opportunity to collect email addresses. Few people will purchase the first time around; starting an email campaign with the intention of offering more value before you ask for a sale, is an affiliate marketing best practice.
Remember: The point is to make it into a repeat money maker.
Warning: You probably don’t want to take up that offer for a free affiliate marketing website, either, since those have obtrusive ads and shady, link neighborhoods.
Should I Try Affiliate Marketing Without a Website?
Affiliate marketing without a website will require you to continuously promote affiliate links. Social media, a hub site, or YouTube are good options building trust while offering value before asking for the sale.
However, in the long run, you’d definitely be happy with the results when the same affiliate strategies mentioned in this article are driving people back to your website property.
The choice is yours…
Here’s our take: doing some affiliate marketing without a website is a great way to get introduced to one aspect of the affiliate marketing business model. If you already have a small following waiting to be monetized then this is definitely the way to go – you’ve already created a community, why not get a quick win.
Here’s How to Try Affiliate Marketing without a Website for Yourself:
- Create an account with Giantaffiliates.com
- When your account is approved log into your affiliate dashboard and choose a campaign to promote. (At the time of writing we have a “Free Powerball Ticket” promotion for people signing up – a great promotion to get your lifetime cookie on their browser).
- Announce the promotion on one of your community pages.
Like the concepts? How would you do affiliate marketing without a website or running a blog?