Which is Best? Being an Affiliate or Being a Product/Service Creator/Provider?

49 replies
There are many articles and ebooks and webinars and coaches and everything else that argue for one side or another. Affiliate marketing is the easiest way for a beginner to start they say. They say creating an ebook or other infoproduct puts you in the driver's seat. They say the big money is with the producers and affiliates only a tiny portion of the profits. They say creating an ebook is doing the work once and never touching it again but still being paid even years from now.

They are whoever it is you are listening to. The problem is that they normally have a system or product or something that they are pushing so is it really unbiased?

Confusingly, many people that swear that affiliate marketing is the way to go sell that idea through a product or service. Likewise, those who say product creation once sets you up for life with no further effort are seen making edits, constantly out there marketing their books, etc. In other words, a lot of effort. And there are many more contradictions on this topic.

Some people come here making claims for one side or the other and it's obvious that they don't know which is best because they haven't tried the other side.

So, I wanted to ask you what you thought.

Which is the easiest to get started?
Which has the best potential ROI?
Which can be started for broke folks?
Which is more scalable?

And which, if any, do you mainly do now?

Share what you think in this thread.

Mark
#affiliate #creator or provider #product or service
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  • Profile picture of the author Mr affordable
    Best is to be a product/service provider, but easiest is to be an affiliate.
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  • Profile picture of the author spartan14
    Well i think its best to create a product and to be an affiliate for your own product .Why to promote other people products when you can promote your own amd have all the comisions .Plus when you get some experience you can create a better product and have people to promote it for you
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    • Profile picture of the author taffie
      Yes, while you are right, there are some things to consider though? Like for example, the challenges that come with creating your own product, i.e. the knowledge, the skills, the money required and the time, the real challenge creating a product that will sell, because it might not, and all of your time and effort goes down the drain. Which is where being an affiliate comes in, yours is to identify and move a product and earn, no headaches that comes with with operational issues, and they are many.

      Not only that, you will need to know how to promote and market your product, and with competition stiff as it were, you really gotta be good at coming up with solutions not many people can come up with, or absolutely and passionately genius at marketing. To me, that is the biggest cause of online business failure.

      One of my mentors said if you really want to be great at being a creator, first earn at least $100000 selling other people's products. I mean, unless you are looking for something else than earning a living, then by all means dabble your way to creating your own products with the hope that you would earn all the commissions. There is no better way to start a business online or at least earn money as a side hustle on the internet than selling other people's products. You learn, and you earn, and best part is it doesn't stop you from creating your own products if you ask me. Remember, it is said, you will never find a rich hermit :-)

      I would still rank affiliate marketing and information products are the best entrant to the online business world, they are both easiest to start, got great ROI potential, and very scalable, you are only limited with your imagination, and this is something average people don't get, I would wager to say Network marketing even, without it, the learning curve will be long and frustrating or expensive, in fact, I would gone on to say you haven't done business just yet. Information products with the aim of creating your own asap, you can tap into PLR (Public Label Rights) here, or better still, WL (White label). After years of looking and seeing what's possible, I have jumped at a few shiny objects and they all worked like magic, but I didn't, I didn't do what I was suppose to have done, again, another common problem with mentees, always want to experiment rather than have out hand held.

      You, know, the case of knowing what needs to be done and not doing it for one reason or the other, anyway, after all that, I have decided on White Label, it's powerful, you won't have issues with product creation ever, or stress with running your business to generate leads and all that. So that's what I would recommend, it beats everything in mu opinion. Have a good budget to start you off, and find the right White Label company, because not all White Label companies are equal, fining a mentor will go a long way, and I am there for you if you so choose, here to help, and to learn. I can make myself available for a chat.

      Great question, and it got some great responses. That's my 2p, I could go on, but I will stop here. Hope I made sense, and that it helps someone.
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      • Taffie, Thanks! Can you please explain the WL products. Ram
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        • Profile picture of the author taffie
          Originally Posted by Ramasubramanian R S View Post

          Taffie, Thanks! Can you please explain the WL products. Ram
          I had put a detailed explanation but it was removed. ChatGPT rules :-)

          Anyway, basically you can have the opportunity of putting your name on products that have been created by other. Kind of PLR if you know PLR. Like for example, Skoda runs on a VW engine, but some people don't know that. So it's that sort of thing.
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        • Profile picture of the author NetMan
          WL stands for White Label products, more often it is offered from SaaS (software as a service) provider.

          You can pay a licence for the whole solution from the vendor, but you can put and sell under your own brand, offer the service from your own domain name. The original vendor is totally invisible to your end client.

          You'd be surprised at which great web services are also offered under White Label license.


          Originally Posted by Ramasubramanian R S View Post

          Taffie, Thanks! Can you please explain the WL products. Ram
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  • Profile picture of the author DABK
    Which is the easiest to get started?
    Depends. For most, for me too, affiliate marketing. "Depends" because at different times, or for other people, other things are. I know a lady who's daughters (barely out of high school) were approached by companies to promote... they had lots of followers. For instance. Now they do a lot of 'influencing'

    Which has the best potential ROI? Again, it depends. On skills and other things.
    Ebay selling has the best ROI potential for some. Affiliate marketing for others.

    Which can be started for broke folks? Ebay, SavidgeD's way.
    Which is more scalable? Don't know. They all seem endlessly scalable, given the right skills and ambition.

    And which, if any, do you mainly do now? None of these but am debating with myself about getting into product-creation and selling (print on demand and drop-shipping, to be precise).
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  • Profile picture of the author Johnny12345
    Originally Posted by Mark Singletary View Post

    Which is Best? Being an Affiliate or Being a Product/Service Creator/Provider?

    Which is best?

    Neither. Either. Both.

    It's really a trade-off...

    The late, great Joe Cossman explained this very well.

    He said, "You should NEVER sell a product unless every time it is sold a piece of the profit comes back to you."

    This is the HUGE advantage that product creators enjoy.

    If you're an affiliate, you will potentially be going up against a large number of marketers -- many of who will have more experience or connections than you.

    That said, the HUGE advantage of being an affiliate is, if the product doesn't sell well, you can cut your losses and QUICKLY move to a different product. So, SPEED and EFFORT are the benefits.

    Which is best for you?

    It probably depends mostly on your personality and experience more than anything. The truth is, they are BOTH awesome!

    John
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  • Here's what I would do;
    Become an affiliate for a product that excites you, selling to a market you like and can build.

    If it doesn't sell well, move on.
    If it sells well, create a similar offer to sell to the same market.

    That way, you already know you are dealing with a winner for your audience.

    At least, that's my theory.
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    What if they're not stars? What if they are holes poked in the top of a container so we can breath?
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    • Profile picture of the author Johnny12345
      Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

      Here's what I would do;
      Become an affiliate for a product that excites you...


      Good thinking.

      I wonder if Cocoa Puffs has an affiliate program?

      John
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

      Here's what I would do;
      Become an affiliate for a product that excites you, selling to a market you like and can build.

      If it doesn't sell well, move on.
      If it sells well, create a similar offer to sell to the same market.

      That way, you already know you are dealing with a winner for your audience.

      At least, that's my theory.
      I get what you are saying...I personally would do the exact opposite. Lets say you bake bread at home and use a bread maker machine. I would be looking for these on facebook marketplace on garage sales and selling them on eBay.

      In that process I would be using each of the machines and writing content and taking photos - to be used to the sell said items as an affiliate - in this case as an Amazon affiliate ( most likely )

      The same would hold true for me in the case of an info product. You as an example...the product you are currently writing is a collection of all of the materials you have read and the experience you have gained...Im not discounting there being a ton of information that is derived from experience alone... but you are then turning that product into a thing... and exchanging buyer lists and in effect becoming an affiliate with other people in the same market vertical.

      You a buyer of books with a V A S T collection on a specific topic...could indeed be a classic example of someone that could would and are a trusted individual with Authority, that could have a site that sells books on Amazon as an affiliate - Product to Affiliate.
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      Success is an ACT not an idea
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  • They both have their pros and cons. In either case, the most effective way to market your own or an affiliate product is by having your own website - and email list. From there i think it's best to promote your own product, as you can get the customer information, and follow up on them with more products/services.

    With an affiliate offer, after that first initial affiliate sale, you don't get access to the customer's information. All of that information goes to the product vendor.

    Unless your affiliate commission is high along with your conversion rate, I think the better route is to have your own product. You can start your own affiliate program and generate affiliates for yourself, thereby enhancing your ability to get more sales for free - and more customers to backend sell to.
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  • Profile picture of the author unodue
    It's kind of like asking what's better to be a basketball player or soccer player?

    Only you can answer that question by trying. There are so many ways to do things online, affiliation or marketing a product are only two of those options.

    If you are new, it's good to start with something that kind of makes sense to you. For example i know streamers and influencers make a lot of money, but even if you pay me $100,000 i won't be able to do that.

    So it needs to be something that excites you and resonates with what you are able and keen to do.
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  • Ultimately, 'fillyuts're fleas.

    You scratch 'em off yr malignoed hayer so's you can chill on out.

    But, hey -- here's sumthin' Drackuler did you should always remembah ...

    He fed on stuff warn't his own.

    He spent mosta his days in a BOX.

    Plus also, he cain't eat Italian, the dumb, stoopid, ****brain losah fkr fkr bcs Gwarl-U-dontlike


    Which is why we so blessed Bram Stoker invited us all to refrain from proliferatin' maxo narratives 'bout this clown!

    Yeah, but who lissned, zackly?

    What maraud of vampiah puke reviews command your next product shopolae?

    What fangs from beyond still your bloodstream into slumber?

    From what rot may you summon life force when all you know is burned to oblivion?


    As a natchrl Millennial jus' tryin' to co-ordinate bras an' panties against a global backdrahp gaht increasin' time limits 'pon its vurry zistence ... hey, yeah FFS sum stoopid cahmnets 'bout vampiah filletin' mebbe warranted.

    But here is muh quandry.

    Let's say I lived forevah.

    Bcs I bit evrywan on the neck real regulah.

    See, bcs I lookin' at muh legs rn, an' I would wanna give my suzzies a twang bcs I done good today.

    Go hamstrings!

    F-tsh!

    Yeah, but it is 3029 now.

    An' I am mortal rot.

    You with me now, in a cornah sumplace, where I whispah to musself, an' I gaht no ideah you there.

    "What did I mean when I said I was beyond all abomination?"

    You shake your head. "Hey, dunno, gal -- but I can get pizza if you're hungry?"

    Mebbe this is the Nirvana I dreampert when I was 2.

    Or mebbe it is the ghastly oblivion consoomin' my soul for all eternity.

    How may one feed the dead?



    Likely you gotta max out on numbahs before this is no kindah thing.

    Hincidentyoorally, I do so love bite on the neck from actschwl non-vampiahs.

    My preference, clearly naht right for yr Uncle Bob as he shappin' for SCREWDRIVAHS in the hardware store while simultaneously demandin' no shocks to his genrl blood supply.

    It's an imbibo thing, I guess, alla this.

    Intake for health an' vigor!

    Stoopid thing is, sum breedsa whale jus' throw open their chahps an' plankton on out!

    I so love the natchrl woild I could Snoopy dance ovah an' ovah, tellya!

    With what would YOU wanna commune if'n you gaht troo stomp?
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    Lightin' fuses is for blowin' stuff togethah.

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  • Profile picture of the author Devilfish168
    As usual both got pro and con sides.
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  • Profile picture of the author Troy Arrandale
    Originally Posted by Mark Singletary View Post


    Which is the easiest to get started?
    I would answer affiliate marketing based on my personal experience.

    Here it is:

    I didn't know I was starting an online business in 2019 when I paid a well-established
    producer to help me create a professional course out of my personal health-experience
    information.

    Creating a product, a health course based on my own positive personal experience, for me as a beginner was NOT easy for two reasons:

    1) I was already so familiar with my method/expertise (eleven years), having also informally taught friends who wanted it and other associates I met, that it BORED me. It wasn't challenging, fresh and new to me. It was a great system, but for me, I need to LOVE what I'm doing, so it was hard, even with my own professional producer helping me along the way, to write the script.

    I dropped the whole thing and yes, I lost that steep money investment, but I'm not sorry. It was a great learning expereince, and NO it wasn't easy.

    2) The production process was very complicated because I was using a professional production company with already full schedules, so it was taking too long for my tastes. Believe me, the company was worth their value, I'm just an impatient person.

    So my advice to beginners is: #1, if you are going to create your own digital product, LOVE your product. Be interested in it, not bored. Unless boredom doesn't bother you and you can just go through the motions with no problem.

    #2, if you're impatient and already HAVE your product/course in mind, go with simpler digital product making tools that you can either learn quickly or if you already know them, use more quickly than a pro production company with its own stage, cameras, producers, etc. (Although it might not look as professional? Not sure.)

    #3) If you don't have a digital product/course in mind, it's going to take even longer to create, because you gotta get that idea and/or knowledge first.

    So affiliate marketing is easier than creating a product, in my opinion.


    Creating my own product is something I 'm saving for LATER once I'm more financially established, as it DOES have an evergreen quality to it.

    P.S. I forgot that during the last two years I also self-published some professional looking fiction ebooks. So even though it's something I LOVE, they did take a LOT of time to create, and yes I love that they will be around long after I'm gone.

    Cost: moderate. I did hire a pro cover designer that was expensive but worth it, I used a virtual assistant to upload them, and an editor or two. I've since found a better cover designer from Bangladesh who charges me less.

    I can do a lot of this stuff myself now, but I'll probably always use a pro cover designer in future, and hire better editors to make my text read like something a New York traditional publsiher would publish. I'm at least enjoyably readable, but I feel I could be even more professionally readable.

    I DO nothing to promote these ebooks they just sit on Smashwords ebook platform and every so often I'm pleasantly surprised when a copy or two is downloaded.

    The one I have on Amazon sold once and hasn't sold again in the same amount of time.


    Which has the best potential ROI?
    Not sure here, as I'm still, after 3 years, beginning this whole process.

    Which can be started for broke folks?
    I'd definitely argue that affiliate marketing, promoting OTHER people's products, is for broke folks. But there are so many best practices and needs to meet FTC guidelines and best ways to FIND good products that it may take some time to do the researching for all that, but it will be time well-spent.

    If I were to start over again with affiliate marketing, I'd know that researching middle-to-higher commission products are better than, say, Amazon like I signed up for before I realized that their commissions are super low, like 2-4%. You can check me on that. And they also have a 6 month probationary period after they accept you, where you have to make at least one sale in that time or they remove you and you have to start all over (have to reapply and create fresh new affiliate links.)

    By middle-to-high commission rates I mean ones that are way above that. Maybe experts can chime in here and give the correct rates, but I'd say anywhere from 20% to 50% or higher (I've encountered one 50% commission on one product which i highly believe in so far and do promote, I'm a student of two other products so that granted me a 60-70% commission, and I applied for a higher commission on a health product and was granted 80% commission. Those 50 and above seem rarer to me.)

    Which is more scalable?
    No opinion yet on this.

    And which, if any, do you mainly do now?
    I mainly do affiliate marketing now. And I use two different niches with two different markets, so I'm promoting each to the different audiences. I also do solo ads and in my spare time, work on my fiction (the slowest, but most pleasurable for me, process or online business that has the least probability of bringing me in steady income).
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  • Profile picture of the author brute77
    Completely depends on your strategy, both paths can be very hard to reach a decent monthly revenue.. it all comes down to "what is your traffic strategy"... what are your strengths...

    I have launched several products.. and many a times my affiliates made more money than me.. coz the upfront commisions were 70-80% and they had traffic in those niches.

    Your goal should be based on something that you can drive organic traffic to... something you can create content on easily.
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  • Profile picture of the author mrrightme
    Making hundreds of dollars per day as an affiliate is easier than the vendor, because it will cost a lot of time for you to build a list and become a successful vendor.
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  • Profile picture of the author timonet360
    The best is being a product/service creator/provider.
    Initially, it may be difficult to put all the elements of creating and marketing a product together, but the advantages will make up for the efforts in the long run.
    Creating and selling a product helps you build an expert status over time. You are not just selling a product but you are selling as the brain behind the product. As you increase your product line, you are seen as an established and respected expert in that niche.
    Also, you can set the price. This is also good for marketing and conversions.
    You also get to keep 100% profit.
    But, I must admit that being an affiliate is relatively easier, particularly for starters. Also, sometimes you see a market that can convert for certain products, it is easier and faster to sell to that market the targeted affiliate products.
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  • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
    Johnny numbers, Claude and Savidge4 all have some very good comments, and for me, they are all right, and maybe wrong. Only because, each person brings themselves into the game too, along with whatever desire they have to make money online.

    My pronouns for the sake of this discussion, will be THEY...since you are talking a lot about THEY, let me be them.

    I argue for the side which best suits the person, having written decades ago; one size does not fit all, a customized fit is what works best. I like loose clothing, some prefer snug.

    And I reposted your questions here, so as to answer them:
    8888888888888
    Which is the easiest to get started?
    Which has the best potential ROI?
    Which can be started for broke folks?
    Which is more scalable?

    And which, if any, do you mainly do now?

    Easy, I've found is very subjective. There needs to be a context of a longer goal, or the intent. Making money is a straight forward thing, TRANSACTIONS. It is the HOW of that which makes the choice sometimes difficult.

    And, what is the current status, income wise, of the person. A person recovering from a mud slide from a Tsunami with nothing is in a different position than someone working a job they don't like, but have a roof over their head and food on the table.

    As a long term concept, I like control, of my time and the TRANSACTION I am making, affiliate marketing doesn't play well along that line. So, the EASIEST is dependent on the starting point, is it not?

    ROI. I've too often seen that TIME is not factored into this, and also, is the RETURN going to have a long shelf life. Creating an evergreen information product which one owns and controls may give decades long returns on what was a small initial investment.

    Broke folk can begin either. The problem is expectation. One big difference is when one becomes an affiliate, they could be one of dozens, or thousands of people all selling the same product and finding buyers who haven't been exposed is the thing to overcome.

    Whereas, a broke bloke can create an information product quickly, easily and have a ready to deliver product in a short time period and using one of many platforms can find a ready to buy market.

    Jim Straw scaled up his AFFILIATE program to six figures in a matter of months, but he came to the table an expert in Remote Direct Marketing. Watching Warriors the last 2 decades, I would think that would be a rare thing for most, to be able to scale up to any significant level at a decent rate of speed.

    Scaling up your own products or services is much easier and faster.

    I mainly create, but don't do much of that these days...at the height of my affiliate game, it was too much time for me vs how that time could be used to create, which had a much higher ROI for me.

    Today, I would want to know the circumstances, condition and the goals of a Warrior before I would make a suggestion, one way or the other.

    GordonJ




    Originally Posted by Mark Singletary View Post

    There are many articles and ebooks and webinars and coaches and everything else that argue for one side or another. Affiliate marketing is the easiest way for a beginner to start they say. They say creating an ebook or other infoproduct puts you in the driver's seat. They say the big money is with the producers and affiliates only a tiny portion of the profits. They say creating an ebook is doing the work once and never touching it again but still being paid even years from now.

    They are whoever it is you are listening to. The problem is that they normally have a system or product or something that they are pushing so is it really unbiased?

    Confusingly, many people that swear that affiliate marketing is the way to go sell that idea through a product or service. Likewise, those who say product creation once sets you up for life with no further effort are seen making edits, constantly out there marketing their books, etc. In other words, a lot of effort. And there are many more contradictions on this topic.

    Some people come here making claims for one side or the other and it's obvious that they don't know which is best because they haven't tried the other side.

    So, I wanted to ask you what you thought.

    Which is the easiest to get started?
    Which has the best potential ROI?
    Which can be started for broke folks?
    Which is more scalable?

    And which, if any, do you mainly do now?

    Share what you think in this thread.

    Mark
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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    The two approaches have different sets of problems.

    As an affiliate marketer, if you use the information you get correctly, you can pick products that are known to sell. You also get the sales page of the product creator, with its proven-to-convert copy.

    If you don't do your research, you'll be trying to promote an unproven product.

    Your job as the affiliate is to generate traffic, ie. get eyeballs on the product.

    However, most affiliates do this badly. They get a lead, and they immediately send it to the sales page. This is their one shot. If it doesn't convert, they lose it forever.

    It's better to capture the lead and warm it up first, then in your own email sequence have the link to send them to the sales page multiple times.

    As a product creator you must do all the work yourself. You have to come up with the idea, develop the product, put it somewhere people can get it. You need a VSL or a sales letter and a way of collecting payment.

    And then you STILL need the eyeballs.

    Putting a product up on an affiliate platform is no guarantee of anything. Your new and unproven product needs a track record to attract good affiliates.
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    • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
      Of course you are right Jason, but I want to do some parsing (analyzing syntax?)...and I want to say the two approaches have different processes.

      Interestingly enough, for deep word divers, both Philosophy and problems are triggers to subconscious neural paths, a subject for another day.

      Maybe like a PROS and CONS list, when one is thinking about choosing between these two, which are often the most prevalent choices by new to IM types.

      And I would argue, that Jason has given the forum a simple guideline to begin with...one which he has hammered on for the last decade.

      Offer. TRAFFIC. CONVERSIONS.

      And it may facilitate the choice by considering TRAFFIC first thing, the WHO is going to buy whatever it is you offer. Who and where, Then WHEN, and the how to of it all.

      Traffic might be the real 'problem' in both of these methods. Affiliates get paid to bring fresh eyeballs to offers. Yet, most beginners start to fish in the same small ponds where only the minnows remain...it has been fished out.

      My assertion begins BEFORE there are these two choices laid out on the table, and that during an assessment phase, which most often gets overlooked and never done.

      In order to choose which one may be BEST, the newbie must know WHY? We see a lot of desperation starts here at WF, followed by a lot of failure, or years of struggle.

      One way to assess the choices, is via the process involved in getting the conversion (or sale, the final call to action which is TAKEN). The TRANSACTION takes place. And it is fairly easy to backward chain that event, and the steps a buyer takes to get there.

      By looking at it this way, one might uncover some hidden slop and mess (problems) of both processes.

      Again, for the record, I don't think one is the BEST, certainly we can find successful examples of both, right here and across the Internet. But there probably is a better fit, and this where taking a breath before deciding is a good idea, to match up skills, knowledge, TIME, preferences...and I would say, BACKWARD CHAIN both (or any) money making activity to identify the steps necessary to get the moolah from them to you.

      GordonJ



      th
      Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

      The two approaches have different sets of problems.

      As an affiliate marketer, if you use the information you get correctly, you can pick products that are known to sell. You also get the sales page of the product creator, with its proven-to-convert copy.

      If you don't do your research, you'll be trying to promote an unproven product.

      Your job as the affiliate is to generate traffic, ie. get eyeballs on the product.

      However, most affiliates do this badly. They get a lead, and they immediately send it to the sales page. This is their one shot. If it doesn't convert, they lose it forever.

      It's better to capture the lead and warm it up first, then in your own email sequence have the link to send them to the sales page multiple times.

      As a product creator you must do all the work yourself. You have to come up with the idea, develop the product, put it somewhere people can get it. You need a VSL or a sales letter and a way of collecting payment.

      And then you STILL need the eyeballs.

      Putting a product up on an affiliate platform is no guarantee of anything. Your new and unproven product needs a track record to attract good affiliates.
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  • Convenientest evah transmission of inevitablestuffs VS The Yummily Bustoutsy From Beyond.

    All hooman history an' propulsionstuffs accurately describes the IRL conflux/conflict gowin' on here.

    Not a bad kinda conundrum from which to reel in an unforgivin' Caahsmaas, says Moi.

    Bcs them zaaahmbies ain't even threatnin' nowan out there in the void prolly a mattah of infinit conjecktyoore don't actschwlly mattah.

    Question is: how to put on weight maxes out as gravity steada jus' cellulite?
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  • Profile picture of the author savidge4
    A not so philosophical question to be asked is "which comes first, Traffic or Conversion?' and it isnt a rhetorical question... there is an obvious answer here.

    Lets flip the question up a bit... Whats more important, traffic or conversion? The answer here is again obvious... BUT not obvious enough that many could answer - and THIS is the pitfall to many many many a marketer. If you cant convert.. it simply does not matter how much traffic you throw at an offer.

    In this discussion I would say there is a 3rd option and that is selling hard product - just like my eBay thread. You are on a platform that provides the traffic... we will call this half the battle. All you have to do now is pick a product that converts, AND write the title, provide the photos, set the price, and include some details.

    To make this super clear... Conversion regardless of product or service, Affiliate or Creator requires 4 basic elements. A title, an image, a Price, and details / benefits. Thats it - its not complicated - BUT its not easy.

    I believe that just starting out and using a platform such as eBay will refine ones ability to understand and refine these 4 simple elements. You give me any physical object and I have absolutely ZERO doubt in my mind, I can sell it on one online platform or another - BUT I have honed these 4 elements of conversion.

    Jumping back in line with the OP and we are looking at Affiliate or Product / service creator... Just starting there is only one option... what Product is someone going to create with zero zilch nata experience or knowledge? So you have to sell an affiliate product.

    Like I stated before and has been mentioned in the thread you have the ability to see the sell through rate of an affiliate product ( very much like I have pointed out you can see the sell through rate of a product on eBay ) so you KNOW the product will convert. Here is THE BIG secret in affiliate marketing - let the sales page SELL ( the link you are going to send traffic to ) by providing the benefits of the product you are sending traffic to - PRESELL the product, and allow the sellers sales page do its job - that by all accounts based on its sales score is working.

    I have stated this time and again.. and it doesnt matter if the affiliate product you are selling is physical or information based. BUY the product.

    If its a bread maker... buy the product - USE the product - take images of using the product, and write a solid first hand knowledge review of the product. Keep the bread maker.. ORsell the thing on eBay... and write up a simple website with your first hand (documented ) experience with the bread maker and sell that product as an affiliate from Amazon.

    The exact same process with a info product... BUY the product, USE the product, Document your experience with the product... create a simple website with all of this personal information and THEN sell the product.

    Start collecting e-mails... DONT sell the product... PRESELL the product.. I use the product and it has done this, and that, and the other, for me... it will do the same for you to... click here to buy.

    A tried and true equation that is obviously repeatable over and over and over. I have EASILY read over 100,000 sales emails in the past 10 years. I would probably put the number at maybe 1 in a 1000 follow this formula... and all the rest? BUY BUY BUY

    And again its NOT complicated, but its NOT easy... The basic 4 elements of Conversion, and the simple formula to sell - Once you get it right... its will be success every time - that is once you figure out how to get traffic to the conversion.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    I read and reread Gordon's post and feel I'm missing something. I see the direction but it isn't clicking.

    Do you mean the consideration of "Why start this business at all?" is the first thing to answer?

    What if the answer is "desperation--I need money"?

    What should the person do then?

    The idea of "backwards mapping" the steps to money is a great one, and unfortunately, based on my experience here over the past 11 years, is something newbies lack the knowledge to do. They've constantly shown me their belief that they'll simply post an offer or buy a Click-a-tron software for $7 and make a million dollars. (Incidentally, before someone screams at me, "Well then why don't YOU teach us, you *******?" ... you as the reader will see a link to such a training very close to where your eyeballs are now).

    I know Gordon's and Savidge's posts following mine have added considerable depth to what I brought up...I want to fully understand what you mean, Gordon. Thanks!
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    • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
      Thanks Jason, I'll try to connect the dots and make my thoughts click...not sure that is possible, but, I'll try.

      My first response to the OP's very binary, either/or choice and which is best...and I stand by the idea of 'best' being subjective, so in order to determine which of these TWO choices is best for any given Warrior depends on WHAT the Warrior or person already has, and wants.

      And my conclusion in that post was/is, there is an abundance of anecdotal evidence that both work, both can be best. In the follow up post, where I quoted you, and the idea of keeping it simple; THINK: Offer. Traffic. Conversion.

      Yes. As to "why start the business at all?". I left the context of the OP's binary choice and addressed general Warriors, especially newbies. You, me and us all know there are a lot more than just the two choices when it comes to making money online.

      So, YES, before making a choice between Affiliate Marketing and being a Product/Service Creator/Provider, see what else exists.

      Just this week, on Warrior, we see discussions about flipping sites, agencies, coaching, solo ads, and on and on...pert near scores of ways to make money online other than Affiliate or Product/Service Creator?Provider, although I'm tempted to say...those concepts can cover almost anything else there is.

      Why start THIS (or that) particular business, SHOULD be the first question.

      Unless one is desperate.

      One can always beg for money with some hard luck story of being in a hurricane, a flood, a tornado, a tsunami, a wild fire, or any of a million natural or man created disasters. It has worked for some Warriors in the past.

      Short of begging, borrowing or stealing and assuming one wants to actually EARN their way out of desperation, then NEITHER affiliate marketing or the other thing is going to be of much use to them. So they have to look to fast. Quick. If one has months or years to dig out of desperation, I have to wonder how real the desperation was to begin with.

      The desperate need action, actually TRANSACTIONS, and those can be done probably better, off line to start with.

      If I were to talk to someone about backward chaining, I would ask them to tell me about their last few purchases. What did they buy? From whom? Many might say they just did a Black Friday deal and bought via Amazon Prime.

      How did Amazon get your money? How was the transaction made? What happened before you placed the order? Was it spontaneous? Planned? What caught your attention or were you looking for something specific? And so on back.

      Anyone, without knowledge, skill or even understanding can create a chain of events, and I advocate that if you do it from the TRANSACTION backwards, you will see the steps, challenges, problems, possible slop and mess involved. Too many Warriors BEGIN, as in affiliate marketing...not even thinking about where and when the transaction (conversion/sale) takes place, it is almost an after thought.

      As to your point of the 7buck Clickatron example, isn't that what WSO's are all about? I can't criticize a Warrior who comes here, sees all those fantastic deals, and many are done for you things, it is how this platform was set up, and then wastes years trying to replicate the easy to do thing. And there is no shortage of these types of offers online is there?

      What makes me sad...is thinking a Warrior needs to be told "You don't get paid for doing nothing". Or as you point out, a small sum will yield all the answers.

      And some bias and personal ideas: I would never work with anyone who didn't understand the CONVERSION (TRANSACTION) IS job one of any business/money making venture. If you don't understand that, please don't knock on my door seeking help.

      It should be absolutely obvious, beyond any doubt, that if no one buys whatever it is you have to offer: product, service, software, coaching, THING ...you won't make any money.

      It makes me nauseous to even think that anyone coming here seeking to learn IM wouldn't know that basic human concept of exchange.

      I will add more, but I don't want to lose this post.

      As to the processes or PROBLEMS of any transactional event, (continuing to beat the horse into glue)...by laying out the money exchange from the end to the beginning, gives one a pretty clear picture of the process, and in so doing, may shine some light on potential problems.

      Anyone here can become an affiliate in the next 15 minutes. And with some creativity, even use a low cost 5 dollar signature link to take them to a page where they DETAIL their journey with such and such product and then link to the sales page. I'm guessing that is about an hour or two of time. Will they get any conversions? Sales? I don't know, probably not, but they will have something in the market which has a potential of making some money, doesn't it?

      The argument that a newbie doesn't know anything about either Affiliate/Self doesn't come into play for a Warrior who just goes ahead and does it. As described above, we can easily find a WarriorPlus offer, become an affiliate, write a review, post in sig file and have eyeballs within hours.

      Likewise, investing 5 bux in a sig file here gives any Warrior a chance to put their own creation in front of eyeballs in short order.

      As to the time to create? HA! I paid 3.77 to Warrior B. Ling for a "cheatsheet", a one page document loaded with useful links. Gladly would have paid 3 or 4 times that. Ling reported a profit of over 1,000 dollars in a couple of days selling a one page cheatsheet with links on it.

      I paid another 17.00 dollars for a report on ONE PAGE PROFITS, where the author showed us how to create simple one page products and get them quickly into the market place.

      In fact, one of my own reports, given away for free here, was all about free, and showed how using US Gov't publications along with public domain stuff allows anyone to create a product in a matter of minutes. And SURE, then it becomes a traffic/conversion problem.

      But the idea that there is a massive LEARNING CURVE to get something online and making money, just doesn't hold water.

      Using the OFFER-TRAFFIC-CONVERSION concept coupled with Savidge4's Title/Image/Price/Details has pretty much all the how to information one needs to get started.

      What I mean is, there are 1001 ways to get started and making money online, but if you want to save a lot of time, maybe heartache and trial and error, spend more time in the ASSESSMENT stage at the beginning and match yourself with what is B E S T for you.

      Thanks for asking.

      GordonJ






      Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

      I read and reread Gordon's post and feel I'm missing something. I see the direction but it isn't clicking.

      Do you mean the consideration of "Why start this business at all?" is the first thing to answer?

      What if the answer is "desperation--I need money"?

      What should the person do then?

      The idea of "backwards mapping" the steps to money is a great one, and unfortunately, based on my experience here over the past 11 years, is something newbies lack the knowledge to do. They've constantly shown me their belief that they'll simply post an offer or buy a Click-a-tron software for $7 and make a million dollars. (Incidentally, before someone screams at me, "Well then why don't YOU teach us, you *******?" ... you as the reader will see a link to such a training very close to where your eyeballs are now).

      I know Gordon's and Savidge's posts following mine have added considerable depth to what I brought up...I want to fully understand what you mean, Gordon. Thanks!
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

      What if the answer is "desperation--I need money"?

      What should the person do then?
      And here is the tough question.

      Idea to execution with a team that knows what they are doing and this takes days to weeks? someone with no previous skills and this takes?

      I would suggest IM in the form of product creation or Affiliate offers is NOT the answer. An Offline side hussle maybe? cutting grass or painting street numbers on curbs or buying a 10 pack of pens at the dollar store and standing on a busy downtown corner selling them for $1.00 each? This is just short of instant... and requires minimal outlay of cash and time to execute.

      The other method ( and sorry I am sounding like a broken record here ) is selling what you already have on a platform such as eBay or Facebook Marketplace.

      I think the phrase is "Desperate times, require desperate measures"? execution of a multi step multi skill game plan, I would suggest is far from the minds of "Desperate"
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  • Profile picture of the author onlineworker11
    Creating and launching your own products can be really profitable, but then you need to have the knowledge to do it all successfully.

    Being an affiliate is a so to say easier way to get started, but the results will not happen over night. Some affiliates are struggling before making those first sales.
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  • If you are new, it's good to start with something that kind of makes sense to you. For example, I know streamers and influencers make a lot of money, but even if you pay me $100,000 I won't be able to do that.

    So it needs to be something that excites you and resonates with what you are able and keen to do.
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  • Profile picture of the author CyberSEO
    The best is what you can do best. This is so simply On the other hand, why not try to mix them?
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  • Profile picture of the author Simon Fong
    Here are my thoughts for your 5 questions:

    1) It's easier starting with being an affiliate.

    2) ROI is determined by each individual situation and varies.

    3) You can start being an affiliate with no to low budget.

    4) They both are scalable.

    5) I do both at this time.

    Simon
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  • Profile picture of the author alanaj
    I would suggest affiliate marketing first and then move to your own products.



    You can do both, but affiliate marketing will allow you to learn what works with less investment. If let's say you are building a niche site with affiliate products, consider adding your own digital product to the site as well.
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  • Profile picture of the author talfighel
    When you are a product owner and you have many affiliates all promoting for you, you can make a lot of money.

    I have seen product owners make in ONE day what most people make at their jobs in ONE year. (I don't own any products).

    When you start, you become an affiliate and learn the ins and outs. Then you can create your own product.

    I prefer online network marketing because you don't have to create the system or product and still earn from other people's efforts.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mr Winner
    Which is the easiest to get started?

    Definitely as an affiliate. Helps you to learn the ropes. The best strategy is to only promote the best offers you can find that have the highest conversion rate.

    Which has the best potential ROI?

    Unless you are a super affiliate, probably product vendor. But the sales page usually needs to be split-tested many times before launch.

    Which can be started for broke folks?

    I'd recommend starting Amazon based niche websites.

    Which is more scalable?

    Affiliate marketing if running paid traffic is usually more scalable as all you have to do is simply increase your budget. As for vendors they are usually relying on affiliate traffic for sales.

    And which, if any, do you mainly do now?

    I actually do both, I have one product on ClickBank and planning to launch more in the future.
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  • Profile picture of the author Faceless Men
    Best in being a service provider, because you are keeping all the profits and can decide who you work with & how you work
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  • Profile picture of the author JC1990
    I prefer being an affiliate.
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  • Profile picture of the author Desireseekr
    I would say to be a great affiliate you have to build a connection and a audience.



    Eventually the natural path would be to create your own product because you'll have an audience that actually wants to hear from you and with your experience you can provide them benefit.


    Still All depends on your what your goals are for getting into any endeavor in life.
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  • Profile picture of the author N4PGW
    I would say BOTH, but the biggie is which do you get started with?

    You don't want to leave money on the table, so if you have a product, find another to send buyers to for additional affiliate profit.

    If you are good and have a product, like a physical trainer who makes training videos or does online coaching, then, you start with your own product.

    If you are starting from scratch and have an interest in a niche, then you can find products to offer.

    One of the most common paths for beginners is to research a lot of material on their subject and make a free book. Use the free book to build a mailing list and to market affiliate links.

    As you grow, continue creating additional content and selling more and more of your personal product, all the while, using affiliate links to further grow your income.

    The true answer to "which is best?" if there is only one is... whichever you stick with and make money with.
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  • Profile picture of the author MarvyDery
    start with being an affiliate first, then as you can experience and make some money, move into launching your own digital products
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  • Profile picture of the author N4PGW
    I want to add to this again. In regards to the beginner, most are broke and ignorant of the IM business and don't think they know enough to get started.

    I don't remember who shared this method, but I think it is the easiest way for most beginners to get started. It involves both affiliate marketing and building a product while learning the business at your own pace.

    Learn -- Do -- Teach.

    Learn something in a profitable niche you have interest in.

    Do -- Exercise what you learn. Keep a journal and take notes about what you learn.

    Teach -- Share what you learn as you learn it.

    As you share what you learn on FB, blog, etc. use affiliate links to related products and/or tools you use.

    Write a short booklet with the most common questions and answers newbies have. Give it away to subscribers of your email autoresponder. Use the autoresponder to provide more tips, answers, etc. as you learn them and for promoting more affiliate products.

    Organize what you learn into small booklets/videos, etc. you can sell as low-priced products. Offer these products to members of your list in addition to more related affiliate products.

    Organize these and more information into mid-priced products.

    Your expertise in this niche is growing, as is your confidence. Start building higher-priced products and coaching products.


    This is only the skeleton of one method and it can be started today by someone who may not even know much about a niche. Someone with experience and expertise in a niche will grow their business really fast.
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    • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
      Originally Posted by N4PGW View Post

      I want to add to this again. In regards to the beginner, most are broke and ignorant of the IM business and don't think they know enough to get started.
      I don't remember who shared this method, but I think it is the easiest way for most beginners to get started. It involves both affiliate marketing and building a product while learning the business at your own pace.
      Learn -- Do -- Teach.
      Learn something in a profitable niche you have interest in.
      Do -- Exercise what you learn. Keep a journal and take notes about what you learn.
      Teach -- Share what you learn as you learn it.
      As you share what you learn on FB, blog, etc. use affiliate links to related products and/or tools you use.
      Write a short booklet with the most common questions and answers newbies have. Give it away to subscribers of your email autoresponder. Use the autoresponder to provide more tips, answers, etc. as you learn them and for promoting more affiliate products.
      Organize what you learn into small booklets/videos, etc. you can sell as low-priced products. Offer these products to members of your list in addition to more related affiliate products.
      Organize these and more information into mid-priced products.
      Your expertise in this niche is growing, as is your confidence. Start building higher-priced products and coaching products.
      This is only the skeleton of one method and it can be started today by someone who may not even know much about a niche. Someone with experience and expertise in a niche will grow their business really fast.
      Learn-Do-Teach is fine. It works. However, it takes TIME, and the "broke and ignorant" probably don't have the time, and say a beginner reads this, and you say write a short booklet...give it away to SUBSCRIBERS of your EMAIL AUTORESPONDERS.

      Sorry, but the ignorant have no idea what you are talking about. What subscribers? What is an autoresponder? You make a big leap from calling them ignorant to expecting them to know these basic IM techniques, eh?

      Nothing wrong with LDT, I've done it myself and helped others to use it too.

      There is something faster, and that is what you already know; skills, experiences, knowledge which can be rapidly extracted from your brain, NOW, today, AND put into the marketplace right away, as one learns more and more of the HOWS.

      If a new Warrior needs fast action, mining the gold they already have, might be a quicker route than taking the TIME to learn something new.

      GordonJ
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      • Profile picture of the author taffie
        Originally Posted by GordonJ View Post

        Learn-Do-Teach is fine. It works. However, it takes TIME, and the "broke and ignorant" probably don't have the time, and say a beginner reads this, and you say write a short booklet...give it away to SUBSCRIBERS of your EMAIL AUTORESPONDERS.

        Sorry, but the ignorant have no idea what you are talking about. What subscribers? What is an autoresponder? You make a big leap from calling them ignorant to expecting them to know these basic IM techniques, eh?

        Nothing wrong with LDT, I've done it myself and helped others to use it too.

        There is something faster, and that is what you already know; skills, experiences, knowledge which can be rapidly extracted from your brain, NOW, today, AND put into the marketplace right away, as one learns more and more of the HOWS.

        If a new Warrior needs fast action, mining the gold they already have, might be a quicker route than taking the TIME to learn something new.

        GordonJ

        Still not the easiest to use what one already knows, some just don't see themselves, they just don't get it, at all. For as long as the penny hasn't dropped yet, nothing happens, there is that block, but by virtue of being here, mixing with others, it's a good sign you are on your way.
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      Originally Posted by N4PGW View Post

      I don't remember who shared this method, but I think it is the easiest way for most beginners to get started. It involves both affiliate marketing and building a product while learning the business at your own pace.

      Learn -- Do -- Teach
      Probably me? "Teach what you most need to Learn" Document your journey - You are not alone in learning something - anything... there are other people looking for a solid resource to help them along.

      A step by step share of learning something engages an end user... to either go back and read more on the topic that you have shared or coming back over and over lookiing for new content or re reading something you have shared

      And to answer the question... Affiliate or Creator... You can create all you want if you KNOW how to do something... OR you can buy a simple product and document your journey on its use - on your way to a knowledge base to then create. Kinda a which came first the chicken or the egg scenario. Start as an affiliate of a product YOU ARE OR HAVE USED... the rest falls into place.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mabu Map
    How do you know?

    You just have to try

    Other people can not really answer that question because each of us will/may have a deffirent experience of trying so.

    Some like some don't.

    Give it a try my friend

    To me, i love to just go straight to make money online, so being an affiliate is best for me
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  • Profile picture of the author Elvlin
    all your question is all depend on your circumstance and skillset.
    but easiest is affiliate marketing, as you only need to focus bringing traffic.
    a lot can be started with $0 but not 0experience and skill.
    prepare to pay the time till your experience and skill rise.
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  • Profile picture of the author Moodesburn1977
    i found it is better to work your way into being a creater/product guy, you have to know your industry first and the knowlege and expertise on how marketing works, and how to build a email list and how to montiese traffic, there are so many pieces of the jigsaw that makes everything work
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  • Profile picture of the author wisecoach
    In online business, it is bullshit to talk which business to start or work on...The main thing is first make sure you will start making some like $100 , $200, $300 $500 per day and then start focus on high potential money making business as per your expertise ...
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  • Profile picture of the author NicheNirvana
    Affiliate marketing (and Display Ads if you have a content site) are a great way to start for begginers as you don't have to create products, write sales pages, design sales funnels, or deal with conversion optimization etc, which is hard.

    Affilate marketing can even be a great way to established marketers to make extra money.

    However, the real money (and the route most marketers seem to go over time) is in building out their own products and sales funnels.

    Digital products like downloads, eBooks, membership sites, tools, subscriptions etc can be great as you create once (often for a low cost) and then sell over and over again without any major additional costs.

    But for a newbie, there's usually too much involved to start in that route and affiliate marketing makes more sense as all you have to do is send targeted, warmed up, traffic.
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  • Profile picture of the author NicheNirvana
    Affiliate marketing (and Display Ads if you have a content site) are a great way to start for begginers as you don't have to create products, write sales pages, design sales funnels, or deal with conversion optimization etc, which is hard.

    Affilate marketing can even be a great way to established marketers to make extra money.

    However, the real money (and the route most marketers seem to go over time) is in building out their own products and sales funnels.

    Digital products like downloads, eBooks, membership sites, tools, subscriptions etc can be great as you create once (often for a low cost) and then sell over and over again without any major additional costs.

    But for a newbie, there's usually too much involved to start in that route and affiliate marketing makes more sense as all you have to do is send targeted, warmed up, traffic.
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