Three Ways to Beat Out Competing Affiliate Blogs When You’re a Solopreneur

Photo by CC user Taka@P.P.R.S on Flickr.

Affiliate marketing is far from dead.

In terms of surefire ways to make money online, affiliate sites remain one of the most tried-and-tested means of making it happen.

After all, thriving communities such as Reddit and Warrior Forum are more than willing to share their secrets. Many of today’s digital nomads and solopreneurs are surging in sales while soaking up the sun thanks to the flexibility that affiliate marketing affords.

In short, there is full-time income potential through affiliate marketing, granted you have the following three elements locked down:

  • Products with strong affiliates that aren’t paying out a pittance
  • A keen understanding of SEO and how to drive traffic to your affiliate website
  • A niche that is still flying under the radar in terms of competition (both from a marketing and SEO perspective)

Perhaps the biggest downside of affiliate marketing comes down to the fact that space can be incredibly volatile. One of the most unpredictable aspects of such marketing isn’t necessarily affiliate programs or products, but rather competition sites rolling into your space and stealing your traffic.

If you’re skeptical about your competition, take a look at this SEO analyzer which drills down your site to outline its strengths and weaknesses.

So, what do you do when a new competitor comes to town?

Don’t back down. Instead, implement a foolproof search and marketing strategy that keeps your competitors at bay.

But where do you start?

Don’t Be an Island

Even if you’re a solopreneur that prefers to work alone, sometimes in the affiliate space there’s strength in numbers. Consider the following cost-effective partnerships that could help give your site a much-needed boost such as…

  • Virtual assistants, who can be hired at an incredibly low cost to help you deal with the rather mundane aspects of your campaigns (responding to emails, checking analytics, etc)
  • Freelance writers, who can help beef up your content production (think: sites such as Upwork and Fiverr can help you find bargain writers who aren’t spammers)
  • Fellow affiliate marketers, who can help you build links and find opportunities to dominate your space (think: sometimes it’s better to turn potential enemies into friends)

Position Yourself as an Expert

Even if you’re new to the affiliate space, you need to do everything in your power to position yourself as top dog in your industry. By letting your audience know that you’re a reliable, trustworthy alternative versus your competition, you’ll stand tall above newbies in your space.

Leveraging your expertise doesn’t have to be rocket science. First and foremost, make sure you implement a combination of the following throughout your marketing campaigns:

  • The power of social proof in the form of traffic statistics (think: screenshots), testimonials from satisfied customers and impressive sales figures
  • Produce content that shows off your expertise and works to educate readers (think: how-to guides and helpful lists)
  • A consistent presence throughout the various social channels to help give your brand a sense of omnipresence

Beef Up Your Social Game

That last bullet point is incredibly important and definitely deserves elaboration. If you want your site to stand out in the modern blogosphere, you’re going to need to invest in influencer marketing to make a lasting impression on your audience.

True influencers are active and amass huge followings on social media because what they have to say truly matters. For affiliates, this means putting yourself in the trenches with your audience to answer questions and show off your knowledge. Smaller forums such as Facebook groups, LinkedIn groups and industry-specific sub-Reddits are a great place to tap into your base.

Don’t let fierce competition scare you, even if you’re a lone wolf. Instead, take the time to divide and conquer your efforts to position your affiliate blog as a high quality resource for visitors. The more time you invest in positioning your site as an authority, the more likely you are to outlast your competition.