Road Map of A Successful Affiliate Marketing Website
When it comes to affiliate marketing, especially with a website, it can be a bit daunting to see these huge websites pulling in a ton of money. If you’re just starting out it can be a HUGE motivation to see, but it can also make you second guess yourself if your own website doesn’t do nearly as well, when starting up.
Today, I’ll be going over what a successful affiliate marketing website looks (in this case an Amazon affiliate website) from the 1st to 6th month of progress.
Hopefully, this will give you a good idea of goals to be hitting at each interval, so that you can judge your websites success with an up to date example. Or if anything else, I think it’s a great idea to derive a road map for what to aim for and do on your own journey.
The first month of your affiliate website is usually dedicated to setup and learning.
You’ve probably spent quite a bit of time, picking your Niche, selecting a good web domain, setting up your website, tweaking the design, choosing some good keywords to target, and creating the base content.
In the first month you’re almost never going to start seeing traffic, this is the start of your journey to getting Indexed on popular search engines, starting off your branding, and tweaking everything to be to your liking.
What to Expect?
Let’s take a look at an up to date example. Here’s our stats for one of our newest affiliate websites, in its first month of being live.
As you can see there's a decent amount of Direct traffic, and a couple of referrals and 1 organic search.
The direct traffic is basically just me entering the website for writing blog content and managing the website. The one organic search is most likely a bot, with almost 0 view time.
So as you can guess, a fairly typical startup month won't have many organic views from search engines quite yet.
Onto the second month of your affiliate marketing website. This is the month of content.
You’ve probably finished tweaking your website design and have most of everything in its proper place.
Now is the time of keyword research and content creation. We want to bake as much useful content into our site as possible.
This will allow the search engines to start getting a sense of what the website is about, and to start indexing some of the articles. Albeit, they won't be ranked high, but nearing the end of the month, you should start to see it rank in the top 100.
What to Expect?
Alright, let’s take a look at our affiliate website’s stats in the 2nd month of being live. At this point we’ve published around 7 or so more articles on to the site.
As you can see, it almost looks like it slowed down in the second month! But in reality, it’s just that not much has happened.
Google started ranking our pages in the top 100, but nobody checks the 5th + page, so we were not getting any organic traffic.
The 3rd month comes around, your site is starting to get a bit of age, it’s not quite “old” but it’s also not brand spanking new.
Around this time is when google starts to test your pages just a TINY bit. You might see a slight uptick in organic searches, but probably not much.
At this stage, you will still want to be adding as much content as possible; At the same time the content you posted in the previous and first month should start to be slowly climbing the ranks.
What to Expect?
This 3rd month wasn’t the best for our affiliate site. It had a slight uptick in organic searches, but not very much at all.
But luckily at this point, some of the articles we had written were starting to climb the ranks, and we had added quite a few decent articles this month as well.
The 4th month is where you will start to see google start testing a lot of the content you posted in your first and second month. It’s at this point where your organic traffic starts to dribble in.
Continue increasing your content output, and start monitoring how google tests your pages. They may fall in and out of the 2nd page, some may even touch the bottom of the 1st page for a little while.
But mainly this is the phase where Google is testing out whether your content is valuable to their audience. The higher and better the engagement, the more trust Google puts into your site.
What to Expect?
Let’s take another look at the stats of our Affiliate Website.
As you can see, our organic traffic started to pick up. It’s not a ton, but it’s definitely an increase from the previous month.
Because Google was still testing our pages, we didn't see a huge uptick in traffic, but our rankings definitely increase.
At this point, most of the articles we wrote in the beginning months started ranking on the second page, or sometimes close to the 1st page depending on the competition.
This is the month where your traffic should start to increase rapidly. We’re coming up on half a year mark, which is usually a good age for Google traffic.
Your site should be building up quite a bit of trust with Google, and content will start to be ranking on the bottom of page 1, if done correctly.
This is a pretty standard month, outside of the increased traffic, and as with every other month, you should be adding more and more content.
What to Expect?
As expected, our organic traffic for the new affiliate site, ramped up quite fast.
Because some of our articles started hitting the bottom of page #1, we started seeing a bit of steady traffic coming in from google. This is definitely a great point in any affiliate website, as its the validation that your idea is working.
A lot of the time it can be hard waiting in the first couple months with minimal traffic; But it does take Google quite a while to start warming up to your website.
This is the month of success for most affiliate websites. At this point Google’s trust in your website should be at a good enough point to start pushing rankings on the 1st page.
You should see quite a big increase in traffic in the 6th month of the affiliate website, if you have been continuously pushing out GOOD content.
This is also the month where you will most likely start to see your first couple of affiliate sales. Which is a great motivating factor.
What to Expect?
BOOM! As you can see above, the affiliate site had an explosive increase in organic traffic.
By the end of the month it was steadily increasing day after day. This is definitely the time where all your hard work starts to pay off. (And it only gets better from here).
At this stage, your site is gaining some definite trust with Google, not as much as the big sites, but enough to start getting a good chunk of organic traffic.
It’s at this point where, if you focus on quality content, you will start to see massive returns for your investments.
Now the example site we linked above had only a little backlink building (which is an important factor to ranking on Google). But it’s a pretty consistent outline of how most affiliate sites grow in the first 6 months.
Google takes quite a while to start building trust with new websites, and it’s after the first 6 months where we usually see the most explosive growth. The 1st and 2nd year are usually the biggest growth factors before it stops scaling as exponentially.
Now of course, results may vary between our site and yours, but this is a pretty good outline of what to expect in the first 6 months of creating an affiliate marketing website. Hopefully it will give you some insight, and motivation, to continue building up your site in the first couple months. (I know it can be slow, which can suck).
After this its all uphill, if you continue down a good path of content production!