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Top 7 Tools for Affiliates

The easiest business to start on the internet is an affiliate business. You don't need a product because you have thousands of products available to you. All you need is a website idea.

There are no products to stock, you don't have to do your own customer service. All you have to do is promote the product.

On the other hand, starting an affiliate business can be the hardest type of business to start. You are competing against hundreds, maybe even thousands of other affiliates. You need a competitive edge to help you make more sales and distinguish yourself from other affiliates.

Below are seven solutions for helping you develop the ultimate affiliate business and make more sales.

1. Link Cloaking
There are advantages and disadvantages to cloaking your links.

The major advantage is that it protects your commissions. Visitors to your site won't know exactly where the link goes so they can't hijack your commissions.

The major disadvantage is that the search engines have a problem with redirects. They will reject any redirect that doesn't go where it is supposed to.

You can solve that with the right link cloaker. Free Link Cloaker - www.freelinkcloaker.com - is a tool that you can set up on your site to cloak your links that your commissions don't get hijacked. It's very easy to use, and it will make it look like the page is on your site.

This cloaker is also very similar to many products you see on the internet selling for $59 or more.

2. Keyword Search
Before developing your site, or planning any marketing campaigns, you need to make sure that you choose the right keywords. Choose the wrong keywords, and your marketing plan will fail.

Niche Keywords - http://www.easytoolbox.com/cgi-bin/keywords/nichekeywords.cgi - will help you find the right keywords for marketing your business, as well as optimizing your site for the search engines.

3. Affiliate Program Search
Finding the right affiliate programs for your new business is crucial. You want to create multiple income streams, as well as different combinations of programs.

These programs include one time sales, as well as recurring commissions on products like memberships. You can also earn commissions for referring others to services.

Something to keep in mind when choosing your affiliate programs is that you want to look for programs that pay high commissions. You don't want to waste your efforts promoting a program where you only get a few dollars for a lot of hard work.

These two sites will help you find affiliate programs, as well as alert you to new programs as they become available.

http://www.websitemarketingtactics.com
http://www.associateprograms.com/search/free-software.shtml

4. Affiliate Program Management
You will make a lot more money from your affiliate programs if you track and manage your programs, as well as track and manage your commissions.

This will help you see what programs work best for you, and what is selling the best. Then you can concentrate on promoting those programs.

Personal Affiliate Manager - http://www.georgecain.com/PersonalAffiliateManager.htm - is a free software that will not only keep track of all of your affiliate programs, it will help you find new ones.

You can also use it to track your commissions and keep records of the money that you have made. This software will also create affiliate reports for you, and it's free.

5. Landing Pages
If you promote using any type of Adwords program, or you have a direct response site where you are building a list, then you need some type of software or online tool to help you build your landing pages. This is especially important if you don't know anything about HTML.

Landing Page Builder - http://www.landingpagebuilder.com - this is a donationware software. This means that if you like the software, you can make a donation to help the program owner.

The beauty of this software is that you can use it to help you build landing pages, and you can build as many as you want.

Google Publisher - http://www.googlepublisher.com/index.html - This online tool allows you to build pages that have Google Adsense already incorporated into the page. All you have to do is add your Google Adsense Publisher ID.

This is especially helpful if you have a MAC instead of a PC because you can build your pages online. Also, you don't need a website.

The free version allows you to build about 200 pages, but you don't get to add your Google Adsense ID. The paid version, which is insanely cheap, allows you to build as many landing pages as you like.

6. Website Building
If you really want to succeed as an affiliate, you need to build a content rich, keyword rich website.

If you don't know HTML, this can really be a problem.

These two tools will help you with building your website, as well as finding content for your site.

Orwell - http://www.portalfeeder.com/blog/ - Orwell searches the article directories for you to help you find keyword rich articles on your topic. It will format the articles into HTML for you, and all you have to do is copy and paste the code. It will also tell you the keyword density of the article.

Easy Web Page Creator - http://www.easy-web-page-creator.com/ - is a piece of free software that you can use to build web pages for your site with only a few mouse clicks.

7. List Building
List building is absolutely crucial for affiliates. By building a list, this will give you an opportunity to market to your potential customers repeatedly, allowing you to raise the conversion on sales.

The best tool for list building is an autoresponder. An autoresponder will handle all of the tedious tasks like managing your lists and handling subscribes and unsubscribes.

Two free services:

http://www.getresponse.com
http://www.sendfree.com

I would also recommend that you check out this site. Anthony Tomei offers an excellent tool for affiliates, and you can also get some great resources for your affiliate marketing on this site. They all free.

http://www.gurupal.com

Let me caution you here, the problem with a free service is that they put ads for other products in your headers and footers. You want to upgrade as soon as you possibly can.

Starting an affiliate business can be easy. Plan your website carefully, offer valuable content, and differentiate yourself from other affiliates. Implement these tools in your affiliate business and watch your commissions rise.

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