Monthly Archives: October 2006

Do you get it?

I base many of my articles and newsletters on my own day to day experiences in the world of Internet marketing.  Things that have happened to me.  Emails I have received.  Interactions I have had with customers, subscribers and other Internet marketers.

The more I work online, the more it becomes apparent to me that some people just don’t ‘get it’.  What don’t they get?  Well in my experience, many things but the ‘thing’ that someone didn’t ‘get’ this week was the benefit of marketing an affiliate product which has a recurring income element to it…

One of my membership websites, SimplyWholesale, has an affiliate program which allows anyone to link to the site and earn 50% of any sales generated by their visitors.  Nothing special here – millions of websites offer a similar deal.  In addition, because one of the payment options offered by SimplyWholesale is a monthly subscription, my affiliates can also earn 50% of future monthly subscription payments made by a member who they introduce to the site.  Again, nothing special here – many membership websites have the same arrangement.

So what’s the story?

Well, last week I received an email from an affiliate ‘complaining’ that he wasn’t earning enough money from his customers who were only signing up for the monthly subscription option.  (A monthly membership is £4.99 so his earnings would have been £2.50 on each one).  Now, this individual had been referring, on average, one new member to the site per day and the vast majority were opting for the monthly membership.  The odd one here and there was paying for a yearly membership which generated a higher commission but the majority, as I say, were paying monthly. 

So everyday for the past couple of weeks, this guy has earned £2.50 from having a single banner on his website.  Assuming this continues for the next two weeks, he will have earned at least £77.50 for the month.  Actually it will be more than this due to the annual subscriptions but let’s keep things simple 🙂

Ok, £77.50 isn’t a life-changing sum of money but let’s move things forward a month or two (and this is the bit that the guy clearly hadn’t thought of when he emailed me with his ‘complaint’)…..

Month two, assuming the level of sales continues, he will earn another £77.50 BUT he will also see an income from the second monthly subscription payments made by the members he referred to the site in month one.  It is fair to assume that some members may cancel their subscriptions but to date we have a pretty low cancellation rate.  Let’s work on the worse case scenario and say that 20% of his members cancel in month two – he will still earn over £60 from the renewals.  Add that to the £77.50 from the new members and month two earnings are getting on for £140.  Things are starting to look a little more interesting….

This isn’t just theory – let me back it up with some ‘real-life’ figures based on one of my actual affiliates….

This particular individual has one link to the SimplyWholesale site from one of his own sites and in the first month of being an affiliate, he earned £60.

Month two, daily sales continued and with renewal subscriptions, my affiliate earned £230.

Month three (the current month), this particular affiliate is on target to make over £400 in commission.

Each week this affiliate refers roughly the same number of new members to the site but look at how quickly the commission payments are growing each month.

The point of this article isn’t to try and persuade you all to sign up as affiliates for SimplyWholesale (although that would be great!) but to get you to think about the potential of small payments either for your own products or as an affiliate. 

I have built several businesses around very low pricing structures and it works very well.  I am also an affiliate for one or two low price products and some of these schemes have been sending me cheques for years even though I stopped promoting the actual product ages ago (the commissions are earned from customers who I referred years ago who are still using the site or service in question).

With online business costs so low, it doesn’t always have to be about the hundred dollar products and in fact, the ‘less than a tenner’ products can also be extremely lucrative….

Let’s make some money!

One of the downsides of living on the coast as I do is the winter.  Whilst I get to see some of the best weather the UK has to offer, I also get to see the worst.  We are not even close to the main winter months yet but I have still spent the last couple of days holed up at home watching some spectacular storms over the sea and ‘enjoying’ force 8 winds battering my house!  Some of the more crazy locals chose to windsurf in the incredibly rough sea but given that I managed to crack a rib a few weeks ago windsurfing in next to no wind, I figured I would give it a miss.  It looks as though the summer sun has been and gone for another year…

On the plus side, as we creep into the autumn/winter months many business owners will be heading towards their busiest time of the year.  This is especially the case if you are in retail of some kind as the run up to Christmas should, ideally, mean that you will be rushed off your feet for the next two or three months.

Every year I start to see the same signs around the end of September/beginning of October and this year is no different: 

• My wholesale search engines start to serve noticeably more search results each day.

• My wholesale directory sites start to attract more visitors and members.

• I start getting more and more emails with wholesale-related questions.

• General online activity increases as buyers start to think about purchasing Christmas presents and sellers start to offer suitable purchase options.

Of course, many retailers will have been thinking about how they will approach the Christmas rush for months already but if you haven’t, there is still plenty of time to jump on the bandwagon and make some cash!

eBay still offers one of the best online opportunities for anyone wanting to start selling stock on the Internet.  When I traded on eBay my sales during November and the beginning of December always used to skyrocket.  One of the main reasons for this was that I chose to sell relatively low cost products (less than £20) which were ideal for people to give as Christmas gifts.  Often time I was only making a few pounds profit on each item but because I was able to sell so many of them, the overall profit became substantial.

Of course, eBay isn’t your only option and indeed, you don’t have to restrict your trading to the Internet either.  Going back fifteen years or so, I worked in a large office of around 100 staff for a major UK bank.  I didn’t have the luxury of the Internet back then but that didn’t stop me making a few quid at Christmas.  Instead of selling online, I would simply buy some stock and sell it to my work colleagues – it saved them trawling around the shops and my prices were cheaper too! 

If you work with a large number of other people, this might be a perfect way for you to make a bit of extra money this year?  Remember, the Internet isn’t the ‘be all and end all’ – the offline world does still exist 🙂

If you are stuck for what to sell, take a trip to SimplyWholesale.  There are thousands of individual products on offer from a variety of UK wholesalers and loads of perfect gift ideas.

And if you are keen to get started right away, forget about Christmas for a bit and concentrate on Halloween!  Fancy dress is getting bigger and bigger in the UK and we have access to a huge fancy dress costume supplier with superb costumes from just a few pounds each!  Last year I needed a fancy dress costume for Halloween and left it until the last minute to order and ended up really struggling to find something suitable as everywhere had sold out.  No doubt demand will be just as great this year so why not take advantage of it?

If you want to make some money from the Christmas rush, you need to start taking action NOW!  Don’t let the opportunity pass you by because it’s a long time to wait until next year…