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To Buy or Not to Buy? A Money-Making Tip for Affiliates

by Angela Wu

A few days ago, a member of one of my affiliate program downlines contacted me with this email:

'I've been promoting this product for nearly 5 months now and I haven't sold anything. I've tried everything you can think of! I'm about ready to give up. Do you have any suggestions?'

After looking at his website and a couple of his ads, I wrote back with a simple question:

'Did you buy the product yourself?'

His answer: No.

Maybe I'm coming from a biased point of view (as his affiliate sponsor), but to me, it was obvious that he didn't know the product very well.

Most people don't want to believe it, but one of the best ways to sell an affiliate product is to *buy the product*, use it, and then provide a personal testimonial (assuming it deserves one, of course).

'But that costs money!' some people moan. Yes, it does; but so does wasted advertising dollars and effort. You're in business, remember? The phrase, 'you have to spend money to make money' is well-known for a reason: it's true.

Oh, you don't have a spend a lot; that's the beauty of the Internet. But think of it this way: why should your visitors buy a product that you wouldn't buy yourself? Investing in the product gives you several advantages that you can use towards making more sales ...

* You'll have first-hand knowledge of the product or service, and can answer most questions that come your way.

* You'll *know* the quality of the product you're selling. Offer your visitors top-quality products and you'll have a much better chance of converting them into repeat customers. That means more money in your pocket!

* You can offer a personal endorsement of the product. This goes a long way, particularly with those you've developed a good working relationship with (newsletter subscribers, for example).

Now I can understand putting off the purchase of an expensive, high-end product ... but if your affiliate product is only a few dollars, then why hesitate? Many people spend far more on advertising than it would cost them to purchase the affiliate product.

So what can you do if you don't have much money to spare?

* Bite the bullet; buy the product and eat the cost. If it's only a few bucks it probably won't hurt you.

* Attempt to make a few sales. Invest in the product once you make enough in commissions to do so.

* Buy the product, eat the cost, and go for some effective no-cost advertising to offset your investment. For example, you could swap or barter for website or ezine advertising.

Can you make good money selling affiliate products without buying them yourself? Sure. No doubt there are a few people who do. But most people have trouble selling *anything* online, let alone a product they know nothing or very little about. Which path will YOU take?

About the Author
Angela is the editor of Online Business Basics, a newsletter for eBusiness beginners, featuring step-by- step tutorials on how to build a money-making online business without emptying your wallet! To find out how it can save you time, money, and guesswork, visit http://www.onlinebusinessbasics.com/article.html

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