Common Blogging Mistakes: Rushing to Join Affiliate Networks

A year into my blogging adventure

A year ago, I set out to create a blog that not only would conquer the world, but one that would also make me loads of money. None of that has, I dare say, happened. In fact, the biggest thing that I have learnt so far is that the blogosphere is a lot more complicated than they would have you believe. While I am far from giving up, I have decided to write about the common blogging mistakes that are made by newbies, to give them a better chance of success than I ever had.

  1. Rushing to join affiliate networks

This is the first of the blogging mistakes that I made on this site. When I launched it, I had the rather big idea that I would monetize it and, a few moments later, begin raking in the dollars.

I had even come up with a not so politely worded resignation letter, to be thrown into my boss’ face at the right moment.

A few days after launching the site, I started joining as many affiliate networks as I could. From Commission Junction to Amazon Associates, I must have joined hundreds of networks during that period.

The thing, however, is you are never going to sell anything right off the bat. Its now obvious that I wasted a lot of time applying for all those programs. From web hosting companies to SEO services, I wanted to join them all. Indeed, a good number of them were wise enough to reject me.

A year into my adventure, I have only sold two items on Amazon. I have also made a few other, inconsequential sales in other places, but overall, nothing to write home about.

Kicked out

Common blogging mistakes: Rushing to join affiliate networks
I lost access to my Amazon Associates Account after selling only a laptop and an air-fryer in three months

What most beginners are not aware of is the fact that some affiliate networks, including Amazon Associates and Commission Junction, give a few months, during which a certain number of sales are supposed to be made.  Without these, the affiliate account is automatically deactivated.

What I sold for Amazon

During my time as an Amazon Associate, I only managed to sell a laptop and an Airfryer. That fell one short of the three items that are required in order to keep one’s account. That got me, I think, a commission of $14 or so. I don’t even know what is going to happen to my money now that my account has been deactivated.

Oh well, its only $14.

What I sold through Commission Junction

Although my Commission Junction membership is in its second iteration, I am ashamed to say that I am yet to make a sale. The challenge in this regard is that I was overambitious as a beginner, and tried to break into niches that are, more or less, flooded.

A good part of the articles that are on this blog cover web hosting and antimalware topics. These are, it has to be said, niches that are hard to break into. So tough is the arena, in fact, that I am afraid that I will be kicked off Commission Junction for good!

Blogging Mistakes: The good news

The good news is that this is not a fatal blogging mistake. Most affiliate networks allow you to reapply for admission, though Amazon Associates does advise you to only do so when you have enough traffic on your site.

I am taking the advice, and, although I am still directing an average of three visitors to Amazon on a daily basis, I will only rejoin the program when my site has grown. Perhaps, a year from now.

Have I made any money through this blog?

A small bit of good news is that, despite the blogging challenges that I have encountered so far, I have actually made a few cents off the adventure. In fact, I have made enough to cover for the annual web hosting expenses for the site.

That’s despite being kicked off Commission Junction and Amazon Associates. Most of the money that I make comes from having sponsored posts on my site.

I only managed to get a few dollars here and there, but that has been enough to keep me going. I am also hopeful that my site’s visibility will increase as it ages, which will bring more traffic and more money.

The lesson: Wait Till your site has enough traffic before joining affiliate networks

This is something that I wish somebody had told me right at the beginning. You are not going to make sales when your site is only a day old. To avoid the blogging mistakes that I made, wait till your site has a respectable flow of traffic before trying to monetize it.

Otherwise you will suffer the frustration of being rejected and kicked off various affiliate programs. While you could always rejoin like I did, the whole thing can be a bit frustrating, and a bit of patience will spare you that. What blogging mistakes did you make as a beginner. Feel free to leave your insights in the comments section below.

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