"If you think you can do a thing, or if you think you can not do a thing, you're right."
– Henry Ford
One of the simplest, most inexpensive ways to start your own business today is through Affiliate Marketing. There are some fundamental advantages affiliate marketing has over almost any other business. Advantages that have made this type of business very attractive to the relative newbie as well as the seasoned entrepreneur. Some of those advantages are:
O No boss.
O You never have to see a customer. It can be all Web based if you so choose.
O There are no geographic limitations. You can reach customers globally.
O Very low start up costs.
O You do not have to rent office space.
O You do not have to stock merchandise.
O Many merchants give you your own free website.
O You do not have to accept credit cards. All of your website's purchases are routed through your merchant's account.
O Most merchants will offer free training and online support.
So, what is affiliate marketing anyway? Well, that's the beauty of this business. As an affiliate, you simply send visitors to a merchant's website that you represent. If they buy, or in some cases, just fill in a form, the merchant pays you a commission. There are literally hundreds of merchants online offering affiliate programs. Merchants such as BestBuy, Office Depot, eBay, Amazon.com, JCPenny, Macys, Circuit City, iTunes, Netflix, Sony, Toshiba and the list goes on, and on. These top-notch merchants will supply everything for you. Excellent products, ordering, payment processing and delivery.
There is also a very good level of security and growth in this business. According to the latest Internet Retailer survey, * most web retailers have already made a multi-year investment in affiliate marketing and count on a network of several thousand affiliates to drive visitor traffic. In another recent survey, more than 40% of the web retailers surveyed that 42.1% of their total merchandise sales, come from the web, and that figure is expected to rise to 51.1% in the next five years.
You can sign up for free as an affiliate either at the retailer's site or through an aggregator like Commission Junction or LinkShare.
But, understand this. Success is never accomplished with No Effort. If anyone tells you otherwise, grab your wallet and run! However, it can be achieved with minimal effort.
One of the things I always emphasize in any business endeavor is the importance of preparing yourself first, then, taking action. Success in business is achievable through preparation, action and persistence. By preparing yourself first for the business endeavor you are about to embark upon, you will already be steps ahead of your competition. Yes, there is plenty of competition in affiliate marketing. There will be competition in any business you become involved in. That, is a universal law.
The most important step to your business success is preparation. Believe it or not, 98% of startup online businesses fail because they will not complete this one simple task, – prepare. Yes, it's a given, that wrapping up the necessary preparation work before you begin "doing business" on the Net will delay your grand opening. But it's important that you take the time to prepare yourself well now. Then there will be nothing to repair or repeat once you begin. "Do it right the first time."
Benjamin Franklin onceave this valuable advice …
"By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail."
The few hours or so that you spend in preparation, will determine exactly how big your success will be. At any given time you can find thousands of online resources, many of them free, to help you in your affiliate marketing preparation. Once you've prepared yourself, then, move forward and keep moving forward. It's just a matter of applying what you know.
Let's face it. It's easy to lose interest in something when you've got nothing to lose. Affiliate programs are free to join – but this plus can also be a minus They appear much less like a real business, than say, opening a store in your local mall, where one makes the commitment of putting serious money on the line. The people who are most successful selling products or services take their affiliate businesses very seriously. They dedicate personal time and financial resources, in the same way they would for any other type of business.
Make some sort of monetary commitment to your affiliate business.
And last, but certainly not least, be persistent. Do not give up. One sure way to fail in any business is to quit. "Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. , Determination and hard work make the difference. " – President Calvin Coolidge
Successful people become successful by never giving up.
Until next time, I wish you much success.
* Survey results are from the June 2005 and October 2005 issues of Internet Retailer Magazine. Http://www.internetretailer.com