Friends, I’m about to tell you a secret that will make you rethink every website you ever visit. After learning about this, you’ll never trust another website review again.
If you want to live in ignorant bliss for the remainder of your time on the Internet, then I ask that you stop reading and click the back button on your browser.
Today, we’re talking about affiliate marketing.
What’s the first thing you do any time you want to buy something online?
Let’s say you need to purchase a new laptop; however, laptops are hard to buy. There are a million different tech configurations and it’s impossible to know what to buy.
So what do you do?
You go to google and type in “best laptop 2021.”
Let’s see what we find.
[best laptop 2021]
Wow. over a billion results. There are so many people who love talking about laptops online. Isn’t it great that you have access to all this information for free?
When you look at all of the pages, you start to notice something…
Cool this page has the specifications and pros and cons. It also has a convenient link to purchase from Amazon.
Let’s look at another page.
Ok… Another page with tech specifications and pros and cons. And a link to buy from Amazon.
Let’s look at one more.
Oh, come on! This one looks almost exactly like the previous one!
You’ll notice that all of those have a buy button, specifically for Amazon.
If you go to that website, click that button, and buy that laptop, the owner of that website makes a commission. I think it’s about 2% for Amazon right now. So if you buy a $1,000 computer through that link, the owner of that blog makes $20.
And if this blog owner gets thousands of views each day, you can see how these small amounts quickly add up.
This business model where one website creates content to drive traffic to another website’s store is called affiliate marketing. And it is everywhere.
Think of anything you want to buy and search for it:
“best kid toys for kids under 10”
“best outside bbq”
“best kitchen knives for intermediate chefs”
Most of these search results are going to bring you to a listicle type article explaining covering the topic and I bet everyone of them has links to make purchases on Amazon.
Now, it should be noted that Amazon isn’t the only company that pays commissions like these.
Virtually every online store has an affiliate program.
Stores like Walmart
They all have affiliate programs.
This means most bloggers and website owners are incentivized to make all of the products they cover sound good. After all, they are just glorified salesmen. The good ones might say “this product isn’t any good, try out this other product instead.” And they’ll be an affiliate for that second product.
So next time you search Google for online reviews, don’t put too much weight on what the blogger says unless you know they are only offering items they think are good.