Affiliate marketing is all about promoting products to people to buy and being paid for your efforts. For you to be a successful marketer, people need to trust you as an authority in your field.
Photo credit: John Conde
Many Kenyans and Ugandans have been scammed by con artists after they were lured into some sort of lucrative internet marketing deals. Gullibly, they fell for the scams hook, line and sinker. Some of the recent con games include Amazon Web Worker, Mimo News and Public Likes which went MIA after stealing from many people.
While one would blame it on not conducting their due diligence, there lacks sufficient information from credible, authoritative sources on how to do affiliate marketing in the two countries.
But are there legit ways to make money from internet affiliate marketing? Yes, there are.
But it is intricate and requires effort, time and sweat.
In this article, I will be looking at how to make money from affiliate marketing in Kenya and Uganda.
Legit affiliate marketing programs in Kenya and Uganda
Below are some affiliate marketing programs that actually pay you for promoting their products in Kenya and Uganda.
Jumia is an e-commerce platform where sellers list their products and buyers can visit the site to buy. To help push their sales, Jumia has launched an affiliate program which you can sign up to and start earning.
Kenya Web Experts
Kenya Web Experts is an industry leader in website domain registration. You can use it to register .co.ug, .co.ke and .com domains. They also have an affiliate program that pays you once you refer people to register their domains with the company.
Global programs such as Amazon, Bluehost and Moreniche
For these programs, you are open to push their products to an international audience and get paid once people buy through your affiliate links. I have written a detailed guide on how to earn from amazon as an affiliate marketer.
Making affiliate income through your social media accounts
Photo credit: Mohamed
Affiliate marketing is all about promoting products to people to buy and being paid for your efforts.
Once you sign up as an affiliate marketer with one of the programs listed above, you will be given custom affiliate links that you use to recommend products to people.
If they buy, the affiliate program will track that the referral came from you and so, you deserve to be awarded a commission.
You could share your affiliate links through social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Tiktok and Youtube.
For it to be effective though, people need to trust you as an authority in the field. For example, there is no way that people would trust your promotions of weight loss pills unless you are a medical practitioner or, there is evidence that you have used the pills to lose weight yourself.
Affiliate marketing on social media demands that you stick to one topic, post regularly about it so that people can identify you as an authority in that niche. You can then go ahead to promote products in that niche to an audience that has warmed up to the fact that you are someone to follow in the said niche.
Do not be too eager to make money but rather to help people deal with the daily problems that they are going through. Your social media posts should therefore be balanced between trying to promote products to people and giving them helpful information that solves their problems.
Why affiliate marketing is better when you have a blog as opposed to only social media
While affiliate marketing is great on social media since people who know you are highly likely to trust what you recommend to them, it is limiting in that only those who are your friends or follow you are able to see your recommendations. Not unless you use paid ads which might not deliver a good ROI.
Affiliate marketing on social media is only good for celebrities and media influencers whom people look up to.
In addition to social media, you could also use a blog that has a more global reach since when people use search engines to find reviews about products, they are likely to land on your blog.
How to do affiliate marketing on a blog
1. Select niche
A niche is a specific topic that you are going to blog about. Every blog should have a niche so that the readers can associate it with something. Fuzu.com for example has jobs and career tips as its niche. Businessdailyafrica.com has business news as its niche.
Your niche could be tech, weight loss, furniture etc. The niche will be dictated by the products you wish to promote.
2. Start your blog
In order to start your blog, you will need to buy a domain name and a hosting package. A domain is the name of your blog while the hosting package provides you with where your blog files will be hosted.
3. Do keyword research
One mistake that I find most business bloggers make is blogging about anything that they think about. You need to have a laser focus in terms of the content you upload on your blog.
The question that you should ask yourself before putting pen to paper is—are there people looking for such content online?
Tools such as Ahrefs, Semrush and Ubersuggest can help you come up with good keywords. The tools show you how many people are interested in finding information about the selected keyword as well as the number of bloggers competing for the same keyword.
If the keyword is too competitive, leave it.
If the keyword does not have anybody searching for it, leave it.
Let’s do an example of keywords likely to be searched by people interested in buying a fridge in Kenya or Uganda through Jumia.
In Kenya, they might Google ‘best fridges in Kenya’
To check for the number of people searching for this keyword as well as how difficult it is to rank for the said keyword, I will use Ubersuggest.
Photo credit: Ubersuggest
In Uganda, people will search ‘best fridges in Uganda’
Photo credit: Ubersuggest
The above snippets show that there is approximately 210 people searching for ‘best fridges in Kenya’ and 10 searching for ‘best fridges in Uganda’
So, should I go ahead and blog about it?
Yes, but you need to also check for the number of bloggers competing to rank on top position on Google for the said keyword.
Ubersuggest names this as ‘SEO DIFFICULTY’ and as you can see from the above snippets, the SEO difficulty is 21 for ‘best fridges in Kenya’ and 9 for ‘best fridges in Uganda’.
For a Ugandan audience, therefore, you will rank easier than for a Kenyan audience.
You have to be ready to compete with other bloggers to rank for this keyword. To compete, you need to have better content, build backlinks towards your post and have a better user experience.
4. Create converting and SEO optimized content
Once you have your set of keywords, you can go ahead to create converting content that will get people to click on your affiliate links.
Your posts should be well SEO optimized with the keyword in the following places
Headline of article
Image alt texts
Within the paragraphs of your content
I like using nice call-to-action buttons (CTAs), comparison tables, relevant images as well as videos that will engage my readers as they go through my posts.
I also need to create informative posts in my blog that direct people to my review pages. People interested in buying fridges might be interested in knowing ‘how to clean a fridge’, ‘how to carry a fridge on a truck’ etc.
These informative posts will then be linked out to my review page discussing ‘best fridges in Kenya’ where I have the affiliate links.
5. Get traffic
Once you have done all this, do you sit tight and wait for the traffic to roll in?
No, you need to promote the content. You could do this by sharing on Facebook, Reddit, Pinterest, Linkedin and Twitter.
You could send a link to the content you just wrote to an email list.
You also need to comment on other blogs so as to create relationships with other bloggers who might be interested in sharing the content if it is indeed valuable.
6. Make money
When traffic starts streaming in, some of the readers will convert and end up buying via your affiliate links. You will therefore earn. Each affiliate program usually has the minimum amount you are supposed to earn before you can request a withdrawal.
While local programs might pay you via mobile money, international programs will pay through Payoneer, Paypal or Skrill.