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Affiliate Program for My Website.. (Need Advice)
 
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    Affiliate Program for My Website.. (Need Advice)
    My company is an online website that allows local companies to create main information pages, secondary information pages, and photo pages. (pretty much like a normal website). Then visitors can get on a search for the kind of service they need, and it will give them results on local companies that provide that service.

    The selling point is that companies can get local representation, and customers can find out more about the companies that are going to be building their house, or fixing their car.

    Anyways I have zero companies listed, and want to get companies on this thing or else it's useless.

    I think this is beneficial to people.

    Phew, that was to long winded for me....

    I'm probably going to do a mailout to a bunch of companies, but want to create something much bigger.

    So I'm thinking of creating an affiliate program.
    I'm willing to pay $35 for each company that is reffered and signs up.

    Please give me advice on the best way of doing this, or maybe you have a better idea on how I can get companies listed.



    Thanks


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    Re: Affiliate Program for My Website.. (Need Advice)
    Are you sure this is a great idea?

    I just wonder why businesses would pay for a listing with you. You don't seem to have high volume traffic, or strength in a particular market niche. Nor does your site carry any particular weight in terms of inclusion regarding search engines.

    Even if you had plenty of affiliates, would they not be trying to sell something that businesses just don't want? Quite part from this, there are countless directories out there. Would advertisers not want to use those that already have substantial users?

    Sorry if this sounds harsh, but I can't see how this would work in such a competitive area. Worthwhile affiliates usually need to see that they can sell the product/service in question through some unique or superior aspect. Without that it will be an uphill struggle, as even hard working affiliates will find it very difficult to convert.

    Just my opinion....


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    Re: Affiliate Program for My Website.. (Need Advice)
    I personally think you should let people list for free for now, let the site grow.
    Once its grown, then charge for additional/ongoing listings.


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    Quote Originally Posted by the_host View Post
    I personally think you should let people list for free for now, let the site grow.
    Once its grown, then charge for additional/ongoing listings.
    This is really great advice actually. Gain lots more traffic through your free offers and then people will definitely pay once you've built up. One of my friends pulls in traffic from YouTube videos. It doesn't matter what the videos are about really. But putting a link to your site under a video that has lots of hits will bring in more traffic. Also Facebook pages, twitter feeds, etc will help immensely.


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    You're trying to monetize something that has no value (yet).
    As mentioned before, you should really try to add some value to your website. A lot of those local companies probably already have a website that is more suitable and themed for their business.
    The only reason people would want to advertise on your website is if you can get them more hits.


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    I know this is an old topic.
    OP was basically trying to create a web directory for businesses. These days directories are pretty much useless since there is hardly anyone using them. Even the once popular web directory such as DMOZ is no longer useful. (Google used to use DMOZ to determine the importance of web sites in order to rank them in search results). My web site has been accepted and listed in DMOZ a year ago, and I hardly get any traffic at all from them.

    Directories used to be important back in the 1990s when search engines were still babies. People relayed on web directories to find web sites of particular niche. It's history now. Nobody is going to use web directories, and nobody is going to pay to be listed in them. There are plenty of free web directories out there, and they are good for nothing but spam emails if you sign up with your web site.


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    Get Some Traffic First!
    I will be honest, there are tons of places online where people can list their businesses totally free. Your business should grow to a level first where people can trust what you do. People need to know that in the affiliate marketing business that if they leave their information somewhere that they are gonna be noticed. If your site is not noticed then how will these businesses get exposure? I would create an ebook or something to get people to become a part of the site free. Then in time, give paid members a really good reason to want to pay for this. In other words if they pay they would get more than the people that join free. I feel that you are on to something great though!


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    Yeah it's an old topic, directories are pretty much dying off at this point. But if something is getting traffic there is always a way to monetize it.


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    I make decent money on Cash Crate and pay for a number of things using gift cards I get on InstaGC. Feel free to check out my work online blog.
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    I think it will be hard to compete with the big directories such as Yell. but if you're certain this will work I would allow the companies to list for free until you get a lot of traffic coming in and find other ways to monetize for now, maybe you could offer a premium listing of some sort? After a while when the website gets popular then would be the time to charge a monthly subscription fee or charge for postings.


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    Quote Originally Posted by smartmom View Post
    I will be honest, there are tons of places online where people can list their businesses totally free. Your business should grow to a level first where people can trust what you do. People need to know that in the affiliate marketing business that if they leave their information somewhere that they are gonna be noticed. If your site is not noticed then how will these businesses get exposure? I would create an ebook or something to get people to become a part of the site free. Then in time, give paid members a really good reason to want to pay for this. In other words if they pay they would get more than the people that join free. I feel that you are on to something great though!
    If your business isn't know at all then you won't be able to attract people to join. You might want to start out as a free resource and build up some traffic and confidence and only afterwards will you be able to ask for money for people who want to join. Start creating ebooks and videos that help your main target niche. Give them away for free or/and ask them to give your their email (and name) so you can build a list of names. This way you are getting your site's name out there and building a list of potential prospects to target later. People will get to know you because of what you offered them for free and if that is helpful to them they will surely want to join your paid option later on.


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