Retirement Income Through Online Marketing

by Don Lewin

Are you retired or planning to retire soon? Are you wasting time each day? Do you have a computer you are really not using as much as you would like? Can you use extra income for travel, grandchildren's college fund, entertainment or necessities? Does the idea of being able to make money at home on your computer working as much as you would like appeal to you? If you answered yes to some of these questions, you are a candidate to become an online marketer.

There are several ways you can get started. One of several ways to get your feet wet is to join an affiliate program (also called an associate, partnership or resellers program). This is a program where you sell a product or a service for an organization, and get a share of the profits for your efforts. I would estimate that the number of affiliate programs may be in the thousands. Almost any web page you visit will give you the opportunity to join their program. You can also get information on affiliate programs by doing a search on "Affiliate Programs" on your web browser. There are many reputable moneymaking opportunities, unfortunately there also may be as many scams or rip-offs. Here are some guidelines on things you should look for.

  • One of the first things is a quality product or service from a reputable organization. You can be more confident of the product of a company that has been around for more than 10 years than a startup company. Their product or service should be fully guaranteed. They should have at least two products with patents or trademarks to make them exclusive. Try the products and/or services yourself. They should be at least as good or better than those you're currently using. They should save you money. The packaging should be attractive and professional.
  • You should join a company that has a good track record in paying fair and reasonable commissions. You should be able to earn commissions on purchases by your downline (your customers and their customers).
  • Your chances for success are greater with an organization that is willing to give you marketing and training support. Do they have a training program? Do they have a support system you can contact to answer questions? Will they create a quality web site free? Will they furnish you with a list of sites where you can advertise for free? Will they make ad copy available to help you get started?
  • You should look for a program that has a residual income. Residual income comes from making one sale and being able to earn continuing income in the future. A residual income is made possible by being able to earn commissions on future purchases by your downline. A high reorder rate will increase your residual income. The higher the reorder rate, the better.
  • You should not have to make a large investment to join an affiliate program. If you are just beginning, it is my opinion that anything over $50 is excessive.
  • Beware of get rich quick schemes. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. It is possible to make huge amounts of money on the internet, but with rare exceptions it requires hard work and persistence.
  • You should be aware of the differences between consumer direct marketing (CDM) and multi level marketing (MLM). In CDM; you, your upline (the people above you in the organization) and your downline can buy the product directly from the company. If MLM, to get a product; you buy it from the person above you in your upline. If someone in your downline needs a product, they buy it from you.
  • Make sure they have a clear, reasonable and fair customer agreement. Check with the Better Business Bureau in the organization's locality.

Finally, you have done all your homework and signed on the dotted line. If you followed my advice, you joined an affiliate program that has training and support. They have built a free website for you. They have furnished ad copy and places to advertise. Usually your objective will be to get people to visit your web site.

  • Then your web site will sell or get visitors to take further action. You may want to start out running free ads. If necessary, you can ask questions of your support group. As much as possible, track the ads and the sources that prospects respond too. You will want to keep using them as long as they work.
  • After you get a feel for running free ads, you may want to branch out into other forms of advertising and promotion. When your ads start getting out on the internet, you will see all kinds of opportunities to advertise and promote your site. You don't have to worry about finding them, they will find you. Your delete key may be first to have its letters worn off. When you start using paid advertising, I recommend spending very small amounts at a time. You can increase the amount once you find some that works for you.
  • You're off and running. Have fun. Make lots of money.

Don Lewin is a retired computer professional.

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