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July 10, 2007

Five Reasons Most Affiliate Marketers Fail

Article directories are packed with articles about how to succeed as an affiliate marketer. The number of affiliate marketing courses out there is growing all the time. And it sometimes seems like I can’t get away from sites offering to tell me how to make a fortune in fifteen minutes.

So why isn’t everyone a successful affiliate marketer? After all, there’s all this advice out there. Even if most of it is rubbish, with enough searching and by taking advice from reviews sites it is possible to find the good. But beginner affiliate marketers still make the same mistakes, time after time.

So, instead of an article telling you how to become a successful affiliate marketer, here’s one telling you how to fail. If you don’t make any of these mistakes, you’ll be doing better than 95% of beginning affiliate marketers.

1. Sit back and hope you’ll be lucky.

You might be. You might also win the lottery. But I wouldn’t put much faith in either happening. I am sure that there are people out there who have done nothing but thrown up a website and earned money from it. But there are far more people who have done nothing but thrown up a website and ended up only wasting their own money.

2. Promote products you don’t believe in.

Insincerity shines through. People can tell if you’re lying. The words sound rehearsed and often like a repeat of the sales pitch. You will probably also end up sick of it, and if you have any conscience at all, you should feel guilty about the fact that you are sending people to a poor quality product.

Another thing to avoid is promoting products you haven’t actually bought. Always read a product carefully before you start trying to sell it. Buy it through your clickbank account if you want some money off! But not knowing anything about a product will make you sound phoney, will mean you are unable to answer questions about it, and will mean you are reliant on the author’s own sales pitch for information.

3. Expect people to visit the collection of links you claim is a website.

People don’t visit websites with no content. Would you? They’re even less likely to come for a repeat visit, and you’ll have about as much chance of reputable sites linking to you as of winning the lottery. You won’t get listed in any directories either, and your search engine ranking will suffer. Good content leads to more visitors and more sales. Pre-selling something well can up the conversion rate dramatically.

4. Treat your visitors and subscribers as cash machines.

They’re not. By clicking on your affiliate links, they’re making you money. And why should they do that if you give them nothing in return? People don’t visit your website or subscribe to your mailing list because they feel like you deserve a bit of extra cash. They do so because they want something, usually information. You have to give that to them.

5. Give up.

Most affiliate marketers give up. They make mistakes, they lose money, they get discouraged, and they stop trying. The success stories are the ones who kept going, who kept believing that it was possible to make a living affiliate marketing. You need to believe the same, and be prepared to work hard for it.

If you avoid these mistakes, your chances of becoming a successful affiliate marketer increase dramatically. Committing any of them is likely to cost you time and money; but even if you have, they are easily fixed. Content can be added to a website, products can be researched more thoroughly, your sales pitch can be adjusted and you can always put in more work than you have been.

Does it sound boring? Yes. Is it difficult and often frustrating? Yes. But seeing your traffic increase, and then watching the sales start to come in is extremely exciting. That feeling alone makes it all worth it. And the money doesn’t hurt either! The hardest part of affiliate marketing is always getting started. When you are up and running, word will spread about your site and traffic will grow by itself.

Just don’t commit any of the above mistakes, and you will already be ahead of the pack.

Author:  Anita Buchan is a successful affiliate marketer who now wants to help others make the same money she does. For honest reviews of legitimate affiliate marketing opportunities, visit