Alright, you’ve got your blog set up. You know you want to do some affiliate marketing. But, you aren’t sure how to make money from a blog post.
The truth is, it’s not as complicated as you think.
I’ve been making money off affiliate marketing posts for the best part of a decade now. So, I’m going to walk you through my process for writing an affiliate product review post using some examples from my new cocktail site, Slightly Pretentious.
First, you can check out this video:
The first thing we’re going to focus on is this Masterclass Review.
Here’s a bit of the backstory (if you didn’t catch it in the video).
One of my bucket list quests is to visit the top 100 cocktail bars in the world. Once you get into these lists the name Ryan Chetiyawardana, aka Mr. Lyan pops up again and again as one of the best bartenders in the world.
So when I saw that Mr. Lyan was hosting a full Masterclass course on mixology with Lynnette Marrero, I was super excited to dig in. And, it worked out perfectly, since I’d recently gotten an All-Access pass, I can watch any of their courses.
This one, however, was absolutely perfect to review for Slightly Pretentious. So, here we are.
Ok, now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s dig into it.
How to Make Money From Affiliate Marketing with Product Reviews
The problem with a lot of niche sites out there is they feel a bit, well, scammy.
Now that’s not to say the person behind the site isn’t genuinely trying it’s just that when the focus drifts away from making it personal and valuable and into links, links, links you can get into trouble.
Here are a few of my top suggestions for making sure your niche site stands out from the crowd and your readers trust your opinion.
Tip #1: Make it Personal and Build Trust
The last thing someone wants when they come to your site is just a huge list of affiliate posts. Then it just looks like you’re trying to make money and you don’t care about the products or the reader.
That’s a fast way to turn a reader off and ensure they won’t buy from you.
So building trust is really key, especially at the start.
If you look at Slightly Pretentious, there’s a lot more than affiliate links. You’ll find cocktail recipes, bar reviews, books, and so on. Out of all of the posts on the site to date, only a handful are focused on selling affiliate links.
There’s one reason why I tell people it’s usually a good idea to start building an affiliate site based on something you already enjoy. That’s because it’s easy to let that passion show through.
The best way to show that is only showcasing products you’ve actually used. When you’ve spent time with a product, held it in your hands, tried it out, you’ll get a much more authentic feel for it. That’s so much more personal versus just making it up as you go along or worse, writing what you think other people want to year.
Now, jumping back into my Masterclass review post you can see that I really dug into it. I made a few of the cocktails and took photos.
Going through the post, you can see I was really excited to dig into these because I know Mr. Lyan’s bars and I’ve traveled all over the world to see them.
You can’t make up that sort of passion!
Tip #2: Highlight the Positive and the Negative
Look there is barely any product on Earth that is 100% perfect. So it’s ok to say you love a product and still wish there were some things that could be better.
In the case of this mixology course, there weren’t a ton of negatives, in my opinion. But, I still made sure to highlight some of the things I would have liked to see.
That doesn’t take away from all the great things I really liked about the course, it’s just being honest.
And that’s important for your posts too. Now if you hate a product, it’s ok to tell your readers. But if you are pretty happy with something and have constructive feedback that’s great honest stuff you can include in your post.
It shows you’ve really gone through the product and thought about it. Plus, stuff like that really helps build trust with your audience. You’re giving them a full picture of a product, not just the good stuff.
Tip #3: Link to Other Content on Your Site
Interlinking is important for search engine optimization (SEO) purposes. When you can, for every affiliate product review post you have on your site you want to link to other related posts.
The key here is related posts. That helps not just for SEO but it helps you establish yourself as an expert on that particular topic.
In the mixology post example, I linked to my Best Cocktail Books post, conveniently it features one of Mr. Lyan’s books. I also linked to some recipes of my favorite drinks, many of which are featured in the course.
So just a few of those related posts help highlight that I know a thing or two about cocktails and I have the subject matter expertise to review this Masterclass.
Keep that in mind when you create other posts in the future too. There might be people who haven’t seen your review but are reading some post you created months from now, link back to that review so readers know it’s there.
And when you write a new review make sure you go back to old posts and add links where it’s appropriate.
Tip #4: Use as Much Multimedia as Possible
A great product review post often showcases a lot more than just text.
You really want to get in there and show off what you’re reviewing. So that means taking a lot of photos and even videos of the product in action.
You don’t need a fancy camera set up to do this. Set up some good lighting and take pictures or videos with your phone. You can even use the camera on your computer to give a review of the product while holding it or highlighting some special features.
It’s ok to also take screenshots from the product’s site too.
This is something else that helps with your SEO too. You can add those keywords to your photos and videos which can help Google find your site.
Tip #5: Use the Plugin WP Product Review
This plugin lets you create this cool little box at the bottom of your affiliate product review post:
As you can see, you can do all sorts of cool stuff with this like have pros and cons, a number rating, and different sub-categories too.
A product review box like this at the bottom of your post is a great way to sum up your thoughts in an easy to view graphic.
WP Product Review also has a couple of other cool features too. There are widgets so you can put review posts in your sidebar with a little overlay of the total score. And you can also add a nice buy now button right at the bottom of your review with your affiliate link.
Another great reason to use WP Product Review is for SEO purposes. It automatically builds rich snippets — basically the little blurbs under the link in a search result — into your post. That’s great when you’re using reviews because it will show your ranking as stars like this:
See how that post stands out because it has the stars and the number rating? This plugin does that for you automatically.
Tip #6: Keep an Eye on Trends
Since your affiliate marketing site is probably around a topic you already care about you are up on the latest news in that niche. Use that to your advantage when creating posts.
For example, since this mixology Masterclass just came out recently, there haven’t been very many review posts on it at all. Since I knew that and was able to jump on it and create my post which can help it stand out when more people start searching for reviews.
So while of course keyword research is important (check out my SEMRush review for that) knowing some of the trends can help you find some potential good finds.
Think about new programs, books, and products in your niche and see if you can do reviews early and grab those searches.
One More Thing About Choosing Your Reviews Wisely
You have to make sure the product is actually a good fit for your audience.
It can be really tempting to do a review or push a product that has a really high affiliate commission, but has nothing to do with your site.
For instance, had I tried to review WP Engine hosting on Slightly Pretentious? No one would care, because it has absolutely nothing to do with the audience.
So don’t get tempted by some huge commission percentage. Only focus on things directly beneficial to your audience.
Ready to Give it a Try?
I’ve given you my best tips to get your first affiliate marketing review blog post up and running. Just go through these tips and check out examples on Slightly Pretentious to get a feel for how you can create solid posts that have the potential to bring in affiliate income.
Want to get more serious with your niche site and affiliate marketing? Check out our free niche site starter guide.