Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Review: How to Make More Money from Your Blog

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If you’re a blogger or have an online business, you’ve probably heard of affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is a great way to generate income from your blog without having your own products. Just recommend products or services you use and love to your readers and take a cut if they decide to purchase. Sweet! Also not icky. I love affiliate marketing and it’s definitely my preferred way to make money from a blog. I’ve written this Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing review to explain how the course has completely changed my blogging strategy and why you should consider taking the course if you want to increase your blog’s income.

Save $28 on the course fee until Monday 30 October
Update: For the next four days, I have an updated Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing coupon to receive $28 off the course price. Use the code FALLSALE2017 at the checkout to nab the course at a huge discount! Go to checkout now using this link.

Late last year I decided to get serious about my blog (and start calling it an online business because that’s what it is) and maximising its income potential. One of the first investments I made was Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing, a course by Michelle Schroeder-Gardner from MakingSenseofCents.com

My Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Review

What is affiliate marketing?

Affiliate marketing simply means you make a percentage of all sales for the products you promote that result in a sale. By promoting products and services you know and love you are helping your readers find out about killer products and ensuring you make a living from your blog so you can continue to blog and help others.

If you choose to purchase the course after reading this Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing review I will receive a percentage of your course fee. For that reason, it’s in my interest, to be honest, and ensure you have all the info you need about the course so you are comfortable to make the purchase if you choose.

making sense of affiliate marketing course review

Course Overview

Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing is a course teaching bloggers and online entrepreneurs how to make more money from affiliates on their websites. Michelle (the course creator) makes over 50k each month from her popular blog, MakingSenseofCents.com. When she realised that most bloggers make very little from affiliate marketing, she put a course together to show others how to do what she does. The course now has over 1000 participants and has definitely increased the incomes of many bloggers (me included).

Here’s what the course includes:

There are 6 modules, 30 lessons, several worksheets, bonuses, an extremely helpful and exclusive Facebook group. The course content includes:

  • What affiliate marketing is and how it works
  • Why affiliate marketing is great
  • The exact steps Michelle’s taken to earn over $300,000 from a single blog post
  • How to pick the right affiliate products to promote
  • How to increase conversions
  • How to build trust and not lose followers
  • Required disclosures that you need to know about
  • The one major tool you need for affiliate marketing
  • Different strategies to use to promote your affiliate products
  • How to use Pinterest to succeed at affiliate marketing 

How it’s run

Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing is run on the Teachable platform. It’s text based with downloadable PDF worksheets you can print off. I recommend printing these all before you get started so you don’t lose your flow. (I would love if there were an option to print all of the worksheets at one time but currently, they are sprinkled throughout the modules as required).

If you like video, you may struggle, but I’ve found the way Michelle has written the course to be easily digestible. Think short paragraphs, lots of bullet points and headings to split things up and make the content easy to read. Someone certainly knows how to write for the web.

The Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing course is designed for busy bloggers. You can save and exit at any stage of the course and you won’t lose your position in the course. The layout looks good on mobile so it’s easy to do the coursework during your commute or while waiting for an appointment.

Who it’s for

The course is designed for everyone, but I think you’ll get the most out of it if you have an established blog and an idea of how to navigate WordPress. I took the course when I had about 10,000 page views a month and used the strategies in the course to raise my page views up around 30,000/month and my income from $100 to over $1000/month. I’d made my course fee back in under a month and I’m sure you will too if you work at it and implement the strategies taught in the course.

This isn’t a ‘how to start a blog’ course. There are a lot of resources available for starting a blog (read my tutorial here) that will cost less than this course so I suggest you hold off making the investment until you have a blog up and running and feel confident with WordPress. Some places to get started: wpbeginner.com is a great place for all WordPress questions, your theme should offer support and if you’d prefer a book I’d recommend Ruth Soukup’s book ‘How to Blog for Profit without Selling Your Soul’.

Who it’s not for

Not everyone is suited to this course.

  • If you’re already making a lot of money from affiliates

You may want to look elsewhere. This is not advanced affiliate marketing, but it does delve into email lists and sales funnels on a surface level.

  • Amazon niche site builders

Whilst the strategies in this course are applicable to Amazon, this is not a specific niche site course. If you’re looking to build a site about one specific product a la bestjuicersdotcom you’d be better off with Spencer Haws’ Niche Pursuits or Sharon Gourlay’s Digital Nomad Wannabe. Both of those sites offer in-depth info on niche sites.

  • People who don’t want to work hard

The wonderful thing about affiliate marketing is you generally only have to ‘work’ once to receive income over and over again. True passive income. BUT the work is hard. If you have to rework 20-30 of your best posts, search for and apply to affiliate programs which involve lots of form filling, create new pins, A/B test headlines, set up a financial structure for your business etc, well that’s a lot of work, weeks or months of work. Don’t be misled by the relative ease in which you digest the course content. It’s the implementation that takes time. (Now you know why I now call my blog an online business because I’m constantly working to improve results and increase profit).

  • Those who need money now

I’ve always said blogging is a long game. The strategies in the course work but you have to have a long-term plan. You can’t start a blog today and expect to be earning thousands every month right away. I blogged for over one year before I saw any income. If this course had been around when I started, I’m sure I would have been making money sooner. If you need money now, you’re better off finding a second job or starting a side hustle.

Results

Less than 6 months after starting the course, I was able to apply for a premier ad network due to increased page views. I used all the strategies in the course and asked loads of questions in the VIP Facebook group. As a result, I now make a solid part-time income from my blog of between $1000-$1500/USD per month, from both affiliate marketing and ad revenue. (You can read about my earlier successes in a post I wrote about making money from a small blog when my page views were lower.)

The best part is that I now look at blogging in a completely different light. Before I took this course I was all about chasing page views, but now I think about how to monetise and have a business plan for each post. This course was, without doubt, the best value blogging course I’ve ever taken (and I’ve taken a lot of courses).

Additional Benefits

The Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing course comes with loads of bonuses to make your blog even more successful.

Bonus #1: Access to the private Facebook Mastermind group

By purchasing this course, you will receive access to the Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Facebook Mastermind group. In my opinion, this group alone is worth the course fee. Everyone is helpful and keen to share ideas for affiliate marketing success.  Networking plays a huge part in the success of your blog so this group can help you grow your network.

Bonus #2: Free Group Coaching Sessions

Two Saturdays a month, Michelle runs a group coaching session in the private Mastermind group for students in the course. It’s called “Ask Michelle Saturday.” This is your time to get feedback and support from Michelle, and you can ask any questions related to your business, course material, your affiliate strategy, blog. Even if you don’t have a question, I recommend making time to read through the thread each week as you’ll be sure to learn something new.

Bonus #3: Pinterest Strategy – How To Receive Hundreds of Thousands Of Visitors From Pinterest a Month ($136 value!)

Rosemarie Groner from The Busy Budgeter helps bloggers increase their Pinterest traffic tremendously. She charges $136 for her Pinterest Strategy Guide, but you get it for free with Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing! Michelle (and me) use this same exact strategy for Pinterest, and it has helped to increase my traffic tremendously.

Bonus #4: How to Always Get Approved To An Affiliate Program

This is an amazing bonus that will show you how to always get approved to an affiliate program. Justine Grey has managed affiliate programs for companies such as Shopify and Freshbooks. Her input has really helped me to increase the amount of yes’s I get when applying for new affiliate programs.

Bonus #5: 9 Things You Must Do When Something Goes Viral

Every blogger dreams that their brand, social media post, or blog post will go viral. You’ll receive a PDF outlining exactly what to do and how to benefit from something going viral. (I wish I had this that time a HUGE facebook page shared my post, don’t make the same mistakes I did).

Bonus #6: How To Increase Your Pageviews

You do not need millions of page views per month to make money blogging, but it is something you will want to increase if you hope to improve your income.This bonus PDF will outline exactly what you must do in order to increase your page views.

Bonus #7: Michelle’s Affiliate Products And Services

This is a worksheet that will help you keep track of the affiliate programs you are in. This way you can easily reference and include affiliate links in new social media and blog posts.

Bonus #8: The Perfect Affiliate Link Checklist

Use the worksheet “The Perfect Affiliate Link Checklist” to make sure your affiliate link is perfect. A perfect affiliate link will lead to higher click-through-rates and conversions.

Why you should take this course

This course will show you how to make money from the early days of your blog. Before you have enough page views to qualify for a premier ad network. Before your reach is high enough to qualify for sponsored posts. Affiliate marketing can make your blog profitable even without a lot of readers. And I have to tell you, making your first dollar from a blog is an awesome feeling. It’s hugely motivating and shows you what is possible. It’s the first dollar that keeps you going.

The Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing course will also help you skip through that first year of struggle. Blogging requires a huge time investment to learn technical skills, marketing skills and to improve your writing skills. Most people fumble through their first year as bloggers making loads of mistakes (I know I did) simply because they want to learn everything for free. Which is fine but it will take longer to build a profitable blog. This course sets out a foundation for a money-making blog, so each post you write will have the opportunity to make a profit. If you want your blog to be a business, you need to invest in your skills. The fee is very reasonable for the amount of expertise you’ll get access to, not only in the course material but in the Facebook group (more on that soon).

How long does the course take to complete?

The course material itself could be easily read in a day. Implementation, however, will take you longer. If you have a blog with 600 posts you need to rework for affiliate marketing you could be at this for months. Don’t despair, these are small but clever tweaks, which will begin to make a difference from the beginning. As an example, I started adding affiliate links to my more popular posts immediately after completing the coursework and saw an increase of $100/month right away. As I have time, I am implementing the strategies I’ve learned from Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing on older posts.

FAQs

I’ve had some questions about the course which I have answered here but if you have other questions feel free to comment below or email me (moneycanbuymehappiness {at} gmail {dot} com) and I’ll answer privately, or if you don’t mind me sharing, I’ll add the question to this list.

  • Do I need to be a personal finance blogger?

No! The group has a great mix of personal finance bloggers, travel bloggers, mommy bloggers and various other niches. The strategies in the course are applicable to all niches, and as the group grows.

  • What if I don’t know which products to promote?

If you don’t know now, you will after you enrol. Michelle provides a huge list of affiliate programs, and course members are always discussing different affiliate programs in the Facebook group so you’ll get lots of ideas there.

  • Is this the place to learn how to launch an Amazon niche site?

The skills you will learn in this course will definitely help to launch a niche site. However, it doesn’t cover in-depth keyword research or ways to build links which are important for a niche site. If you have a blog as well as a niche site, you’ll find the skills will complement your blog more.

Do you have a Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Coupon?

Yes, I do! But it’s only for a short time. From Thursday, Oct 26 to Monday, Oct 30, you can receive $28 off the total course fee using the code FALLSALE2017. This will bring the price down to $169. Please note this coupon code is only available for the one-time purchase fee, it cannot be used on the monthly payment plan. This Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing coupon is only valid until Oct 30. You can buy the course now – don’t forget to use the code FALLSALE2017 at checkout to receive your discount. Purchase the course now.

I hope you’ve found this review of Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing helpful. If you have any questions about the course, please leave a comment here or you can email me (moneycanbuymehappiness {at} gmail {dot} com).

If you want to learn more about the course, click this link to go to the course page now.

This honest of the Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing review will explain what the course is all about, who will benefit most and what you can expect if you decide to enrol. If you want to learn how to make money from affiliate marketing, this post is for you.

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