Your website doesn’t just have to be limited to selling your own products and services, you can also use your website to give you multiple income streams.
Below are 5 simple income streams that you could set up with very little work.
What are now commonly called “personalised ads”, such as those offered by Google AdSense, are a great way to add an additional revenue stream to your website.
You’ll likely be getting ads displayed based on your website visitors’ search and web history. That means professional looking ads for products your user is known to have an interest in.
It sounds so perfect, what could go wrong?
Well, a word of warning… you could be sending your customers straight to you competition!
If you have a product or service that other people sell and pay to promote, you could be labeling your website with a big glossy ad for your competitors, that if clicked, will send your customer straight into their arms in exchange for a few pennies of ad revenue.
What’s the average lifetime value of your customers? I’d bet it’s more than a few pennies…
There is some good news however… You can limit the chances of this happening.
By going into the settings of Google Ads, you can ask Google not to display ads for certain categories of businesses. Be sure to tick as many as you can relating to products and services you offer.
Start with the most relevant and work your way down until you cover all the businesses that could steal your customers.
You’ve probably clicked hundreds of affiliate links in your time without even realising.
An affiliate links is just like any other link on the internet, but it includes an affiliate ID also known as a “tag”. This “tag” tells the site you arrive at who sent you there.
Because websites pay money to people to send other people to their site!
And it’s more common and easier to get involved than you may think…
Amazon is the classic “starter” affiliate program. They offer a direct affiliate program (as opposed to one managed by an affiliate host?) called Amazon Associates.
All that’s needed to sign up is a regular Amazon account. Click the Amazon Associates link at the bottom of every Amazon page and you’ll be asked if you agree with the terms and conditions, if you do you’ll become an Amazon Associate aka an affiliate.
The next time you log in to Amazon you’ll have an extra toolbar across the top of your screen. This bar allows you to quickly generate a link to any Amazon page with your affiliate ID, or tag, already embedded. Copy the link and start sharing it.
Affiliate links can be used on your website, on social media, and in emails / instant messages, although it is always best practice to tell people that they are affiliate links (for some companies, it is mandatory that you disclose it).
I use affiliate links when I want to recommend products that someone else sells. The books section of my website is filled with affiliate links to books I love.
If I’m selling books for Amazon, why shouldn’t I get 5% of the sale?
It’s worth noting that with Amazon and most other affiliates, the sale doesn’t have to be made straight after the link is clicked.
Most affiliate programs put a cookie on the user’s browser so if the user comes back to make a purchase within 30 days, you still get paid a commission. And not just on the item you linked to, but whatever they buy!
Most big internet retailers offer affiliate programs and the link is usually at the bottom of the homepage.
Each program varies and have their own terms. Some don’t want you to use their links in emails, some don’t like you sharing them on social media so always thoroughly read the terms and conditions for each.
If people love your business, why not offer merch with your company logo or slogan on it?
T shirts are a good way to start. Here at Riverview we can help source all types of clothing that you can personalise with your brand. Click here for more information.
You can start by buying just a few, or if you want even less risk, you can upload a design to companies like Spreadshirt or TeeSpring and sell them through their sites with no setup costs.
You create your designs, tell them how much you want as profit and start sharing the link.
You won’t make as much money as if you bought them first and sold them, but it’s a good way to test the market.
Other items you can sell include mugs, phone cases, fridge magnets, bottle openers, or USB flash drives.
Don’t worry if you don’t want to spend a lot of money up front, you can use companies known as Drop-shippers to fulfil the orders as they come in.
Which brings us nicely to…
Drop-shipping is where you take the order for an item, along with payment, from your customer, and you pay someone else to fulfill and deliver the products.
It’s a great way to add additional products to your site that you don’t have the ability to produce yourself, and can be another additional revenue stream for your site.
Once you have signed up for a drop-shipping company, they usually have a back end that you log into and create your orders. You then pay what the drop-shipper charges, they deliver It, and you get to keep whatever mark up you gave the product.
Again, this is another way to test the waters before you make a wholesale purchase of a product.
Do you have a car cleaning business? Know someone who has a garage? Why not partner up and promote each other’s services?
It can be as easy as agreeing to give out one another’s business cards at the end of a job or including an ad for them in your auto-responder email sequence when someone signs up for your newsletter.
With partnerships, you already have a foot in the door without even meeting your potential customer. If the business promoting you does a good job, the customer is much more likely to take a recommendation from them.
No matter what business you’re in, there’s almost certainly someone out there that has a product to compliment what you offer.
If you have a cleaning company, team up with an estate agent. If you’re a window cleaner, team up with a gardener. Work together to grow each other’s businesses.
I hope these tips have given you some new ideas for additional revenue streams for your business.
If you have any questions, comments, or can think of something I missed, let me know in the comments below.
If you would like some more advice on getting the most out of your website, drop us a message or give us a call to book a free 15 minute telephone consultation regarding your web presence.
This blog post contains affiliate links. You can find out more about affiliate links here.