To increase your affiliate marketing commissions, you need more traffic, so once you know your audience, you can hone in on the content that’s most relevant to them, so they are more likely to click through and buy the products you recommend on eBay.
Award-winning entrepreneur Syed Balkhi has some brilliant ideas on increasing blog/site traffic by focusing on how to create content that works and converts. His rule for creating content is that it must not only be readable and shareable, but that it must also move people into action, like clicking on your eBay affiliate links.
Write for people…
You’ve probably heard people say not to write for search engines, but to write for people. Syed has a slight caveat to that. He says you should write for people, but with search engines in mind.
It all begins with being systematic in researching your topics and keywords. You need to know what key questions/challenges/pain points your audience has in order to deliver just the right content.
To do this, start by taking a good look at Google Analytics, which shows your important demographic information, your top (and bottom) performing content, and keywords that brought people to your site, as well as what people are searching for once they’re on your site.
And if you’re not in the habit of periodically using Google Keyword Planner, get on it – it’s one of the most basic SEO tools and a great place to start.
To take your keyword and topic research even further, AnswerThePublic provides an incredibly visual, data-rich, free tool that provides a ton of useful information about what people are searching for, and how you can better answer the public’s queries.
For example, let’s say you have a blog about affiliate marketing. When you go to AnswerThePublic, you can “ask the seeker” to suggest content ideas based on your keywords. When you put in “affiliate marketing” and your country, you’ll get visualizations and data about the questions, words and phrases that are related to your keyword(s).
You can use this deep, insightful information not just to do a better job with your SEO, but also to come up with content that resonates with your readers.
Once you have a smart and strategic idea of what topics work, the next step is to familiarize yourself with the various types of content that work best, which include:
Syed is a proponent of building your pillar articles, first and foremost. Great for SEO, social shares and referral traffic, pillar articles are evergreen (meaning the information in them is as timeless as possible), in-depth, lengthy, detailed, and most importantly, provide exceptional information and value to your readers.
Pillar articles establish your authority and become those posts that you link back to time and again. Keep in mind that sometimes the content in pillar articles needs to be updated, and it’s always a good idea to keep such articles fresh.
Examples of pillar articles from Balkhi’s sites include: The Ultimate Guide to Boost WordPress Speed & Performance and Ultimate WordPress SEO Guide for Beginners (Step by Step).
How-to articles have built-in search and are especially good for long-tail SEO (those niche search phrases that are normally three-plus words long). A good example of a “how-to” article from Copyblogger is How to Run a Sustainable Writing Business (Where the Backbone of Success Is Simply … You).
Infographics pair eye-grabbing visuals with informative, brief text. Studies find that people do 323% better following directions with text and images than those following directions without illustrations. Infographics also get loads of social shares and generate referral traffic, so they’re well worth including in your content mix.
This combination of a list and an article is a very popular type of post because it is easy to consume, and normally includes snappy subheads, fun images or gifs, and short descriptions. When done well, listicles are perfect for social sharing, traffic referrals, and outreach. An example of a listicle is, The 8 Best Twinkie Listings On eBay from Buzzfeed, written when there was a chance that Hostess Twinkies were going to be discontinued.
Refresh and repurpose old articles
From your backend analytics, you should have a good idea of what content has performed the best over time. Periodically take a peek and pull out those top performers, update the information, add an “Updated” tag to the title, and voila! You have effective content that stands the test of time and keeps your organic SEO fresh and growing.
Once you know what kind of content you are creating, the other key step is to come up with compelling headlines that make people want to click through to read your post.
Balkhi recommends a couple of free tools that can help you predict how effective your headline will be:
- The Emotional Marketing Value (EMV) Headline Analyzer – This tool from the Advanced Marketing Institute ranks whether your headlines hit a deep, emotional nerve with your potential audience. It also tells you which emotions – intellectual, emphatic, or spiritual – your headline most impacts.
- The CoSchedule Headline Analyzer – This free tool looks at the overall structure, grammar, and readability of your headline, as well as other aspects including length, sentiment, and even how your headline will appear in Google and in email headlines.
Once you have a good idea of what content you want to publish, Balkhi recommends you plan out a consistent editorial calendar. While he uses Asana (which has a free version), CoSchedule also has an all-in-one marketing calendar that has a low-priced “solo marketing” tier for bloggers and solopreneurs.
This article highlights insights from a 2017 presentation by Syed Balkhi at Social Media Marketing World. Balkhi is the award-winning founder of several seven-figure online businesses, with sites that generate more than 200 million page views per year.