Content Marketing

9 Awesome Affiliate Marketing Content Ideas

Finding affiliate marketing content ideas can be tough. Read our list for the types we know work best based on building 7-figure niche sites.

Gene Schleeter August 24, 2022
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If you’ve been in the digital marketing game for a while, then you’re probably familiar with writer’s block. I always have trouble coming up with cool affiliate marketing content ideas, and, since you’re reading this, I’ll bet you do too.

I’ve learned that mixing up the type of content you write is a great way to get the creative juices flowing. You’ll burn yourself out if you follow the same format for 50 articles in a row.

I’ve put together nine content strategies you can steal and some examples from the best affiliate marketers in the industry.

Let’s dive in!

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Do these things before you start coming up with ideas

Before reaching out into the abyss and fishing for affiliate content ideas, you need to lay some groundwork. These steps will help you know where your content is headed.

Success occurs when opportunity meets preparation” – Zig Ziglar

Keyword research

Now and then, Lasso customers reach out to me and ask how to increase their organic traffic.

You’d be surprised how many bloggers are brushing over keyword research or skipping it altogether. But, unfortunately, it’s a super common mistake among beginners.

So, my first response is always this question:

“How are you conducting your keyword research?”

I’d argue that conducting good keyword research is almost as important as the content itself. If you have a small affiliate site and you’re trying to get out of the sandbox, you’re not going to rank for “best laptop.” It’s just not possible.

But there’s hope if you follow the right strategy.

We’ve written about keyword research in the past, but here are the types of keywords everyone should look for in their niche:

  • Competitor Keywords: What do other affiliate websites in your niche rank for? Pay special attention to sites that are around the same size as you.
  • Matching Terms: Brainstorm a few seed keywords in your niche, then search for keywords with matching terms.
  • Long-tail keywords: The longer and more specific you get with keywords, the less competition you’ll find. I mentioned before that you won’t rank for “best laptop.” But, you probably could for “best laptop for photoshop under $500”. So, scrape up the long-tail keywords and build up from there.
  • Questions: Question keywords are ignored by big sites because they’re challenging to monetize. However, in my experience, you can monetize any keyword by finding the right angle.

Competitor research

There are over one billion websites on the internet. It’s rare to come up with a unique idea these days. If you find a great keyword to write about, there are sure to be many sites ranking for that keyword already.

The fact those pages rank proves Google likes what they’ve written for that keyword. So there’s no sense in coming up with something entirely different because search engines like what your competitors have written.

Before I started writing this article, I looked at what the other sites published. I jotted down their headings and post structures and noted their word counts. Then, I mixed all that with my ideas and outlined this article.

Note: I’m not telling you to plagiarise your competitors’ content. I’m telling you to take inspiration and follow the formats that Google has already rewarded.

Consider search intent

Now it’s time for me to contradict what I just told you.

Google is good at knowing what searchers are looking for, but it’s not perfect. It would help if you are optimized for SEO, but search intent is even more critical.

If you’re looking at the SERP for a keyword and are sure that the results are irrelevant, then it might be best to go with your gut. For example, if you’re searching for the “best inflatable paddleboard,” and all the results are roundups of fiberglass paddleboards, you have a golden opportunity to fill a need.

Alternatively, if all you see is a bunch of e-commerce product pages, consider another keyword.

I’d only go against what’s already ranking in Google if you’re sure that what you’re writing is better. Even then, you might not be able to rank for the keyword. But it’s better to deliver an answer to people’s problems than to chase easy rankings.

Further Reading:

9 Affiliate Marketing Content Ideas

Now that all that’s out of the way, we can run down the list of content marketing ideas. Of course, many more are out there (e.g., email marketing or influencer marketing), but these are some of the ones I’ve seen work the best.

1. How-to guides

Right out of the gate, we have a type of content that many affiliate marketers blow off. How-to guides, tutorials, and info content get a bad rap for being hard to monetize.

Tip: Your content isn’t hard to monetize. You just didn’t think about how you’d earn affiliate income from it while you were writing.

When you write info content, you should think about monetization from the beginning. There are almost always affiliate products related to whatever process you’re explaining, and you should be ready to promote them.

For example, if I were to write a comprehensive site-speed guide, I’d make sure to mention WP Rocket. Not only would I reference them, but it would be necessary to the process. Likewise, you’d need Hunter to follow my guide if I were writing about email outreach.

Tutorial content is my favorite type of affiliate marketing content because it follows the #1 rule of sales: solve a problem.

Example:

How to grow potatoes in containers from The Spruce.

how to guide example from the spruce

 

Further Reading:

2. Branded product reviews

When I started blogging for money in college, people told me never to write branded product reviews. This is because these keywords tend to have low search volume or are very competitive.

However, branded keywords are a great way to create second-tier engagement. For example, if someone visits a piece of info content on your website, maybe you can point them to a product review (that’s optimized for conversions).

If you don’t think individual product reviews are worth the time, then ask yourself why tech blogs publish so many of them. Even simple landing pages can generate tons of affiliate commissions if you leverage them correctly.

Example:

Dell XPS 13 (9310) Review from PCMag.

dell xps 13 single product review from PC Mag

 

3. Vs. Pages (product comparisons)

Even the best products have unsatisfied customers. It’s just a part of doing business. Unsatisfied customers still have a problem to solve, so that they will look for a workable alternative. That’s where the power of vs. pages comes from.

google search screenshot of quickbooks vs. keyword

 

If you type “[Your product] vs.” into Google, you’ll see what other people are searching for. They want to know how another product stacks up against what they’ve tried. And that’s where you can swoop in and create a resource for them.

Making incredible comparison pages has never been easier. Using Lasso, you can easily make awesome product grids that convert like crazy. They look like this:

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If you want to create incredible versus pages using grids like this, try Lasso for free.

Example:

Quickbooks vs. Quicken: What’s the Difference? from Investopedia.

product vs page example from investopedia

 

4. Resource pages

Managing the affiliate program at Lasso, I’ve seen a lot of different affiliate marketing strategies. One thing I’ve noticed is that resource pages convert exceptionally well.

It makes sense. If you’ve built an audience, it’s because they trust you as an authority in your niche. So, they want to see what products you deem “essential.”

Further Reading:

Example:

The Financial Toolbox from Listen Money Matters created using Lasso.

Listen Money Matters Toolbox example resource page

 

5. Product roundups

Product roundups (or “best x for y” posts) are the most popular affiliate marketing content type. The keywords are uber-competitive because they convert incredibly well.

If you want to write product roundups and rank, you need to be sure you have your keyword research dialed in. Long-tail keywords are your best asset here. Product roundups can pay dividends if you find an open space in your niche.

Example:

5 Best Silk Shirts for Men from The Adult Male.

Example of a product roundup from the Adult Male

Further Reading:

6. List posts

List posts can look like product roundups, but we’re talking about short bits of information instead of products.

If you want to write about the “best ways to clean a car,” you can summarize a few ways to clean a car, along with the benefits of each.

Then, inside each list item, you can outline a process and promote related products. It’s like packing a bunch of info articles into one!

List posts are great because they’re easy to write, consume, and highly sharable. Make sure to promote your posts on social media, along with a statement like, “You won’t believe number 7!”

Example:

23 of the Best Online Jobs for Students by College Info Geek

College Info Geek list post example

 
Further Reading:

7. Gift guides

Gift guides take things back to the old days of marketing strategies and target audiences. Instead of finding keywords that target things that moms, dads, bosses, teachers, etc., want to buy, target the people who buy gifts for those people.

Gift guides are like product roundups, except the products can span multiple categories. All that matters is they fit what the recipient may want. These posts are easy to write, and they convert super well.

Example:

31 Cool AF Gifts for the Teenage Bro-ski in Your Life from GiftLab.

Giftlab gift list example

 

8. Current event posts

Do you remember a few years ago when kids in the US lost their minds over fidget spinners? Merchants sold them everywhere for months, then they just disappeared.

I hear a lot of content creators make fun of people who started fidget spinner websites. But, websites in the kids’ toy niche weren’t laughing; they were getting paid.

There’s a difference between jumping on the bandwagon and staying current. If you want to be taken seriously as an industry authority, always write about what’s trending. That’s also an excellent way for you to make some extra affiliate sales.

If I had a site about surfing equipment, I’d be sure to publish recaps of major surfing tournaments. I’d also slip in an Amazon link to the winner’s surfboard of choice.

These posts aren’t evergreen passive income; they’ll have a limited earnings window. But if you’re willing to put in the effort to publish timely content, you’ll reap the rewards.

Further Reading:

Example:

3 bullish reasons to buy Netflix and chill from Financial Post.

Financial Post current events post example

 

9. Case studies

I’ve mentioned that one of my duties at Lasso is to oversee our affiliate marketing program. And I’ve seen firsthand that the best way to increase conversion rates is to recommend products that you actually use.

Audiences can tell when you’re faking it or recommending a product you don’t know much about. Of course, you can still make sales, but it’s nothing compared to what you’d get with case studies.

Your readers want to know which products you use and whether or not they work. Case studies are great for that. Document yourself using a product and the results you have. If a product doesn’t work, be honest, and recommend an alternative.

The name of the game here is empathy. If you can show your audience that you understand their issue, they’ll accept whatever solution you give them.

Example:

The $10,000 Per Month Agency Story from Content Mavericks.

Content Mavericks case study example

 

Take your affiliate marketing business to the next level

I hope you’ve found a content idea that you like, but it’s not enough to have great ideas. You have to execute!

I’ve written before about how to write affiliate marketing content that converts, but here are a few tips:

  • Write an outline first – start with a solid foundation
  • Increase your mentions per page – mention a product at least seven times to ensure a sale
  • Optimize your page with images and displays – check out how Lasso helps you do this

You’ll have no problem overcoming writers’ fatigue and creating excellent content with great ideas and execution. Then, go launch some incredible affiliate marketing campaigns. If you get rich in the process, let me know!

Want more tips like this? Then, join our newsletter, The Monday Marketer.

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