Selling Other People’s Products Vs. Selling Your Own

What is better?

Create and sell your own product, or sell someone else’s and get a commission?

If you’re totally new to online marketing, I would recommend starting with selling another person’s product. We call this business model ‘Affiliate marketing’.

Your job then is to just promote a product, send traffic to your link and get paid a commission for any sales you refer.

This way you can skip the job of creating the product, website, graphics, customer support etc, and just focus on selling.

But is it affiliate marketing really the better business model?

Is it easier, more profitable, more enjoyable to be a product creator/owner or an affiliate?

First, let’s take a look at the Pros and Cons of Affiliate Marketing .…

The Pros:

Low Investment – Both in time and money as it doesn’t take long to find affiliate offers to promote and it also doesn’t cost anything to become an affiliate marketer other than your computer and internet connection costs.

Plenty Of Choice – There are many products that you can promote. In fact, you could probably add ‘too many products to promote’ to the list of cons for an affiliate but we will stick with it being in our favour because we can use top affiliate programs like Zaxaa, JVZoo and Clickbank to find top selling products to promote and if we know of any top marketers who have their own products we might find some gems to promote right under our nose. Wink! Wink!

No Support Or Customer Service – As an affiliate you don’t have to worry about buyers contacting you with their support issues as the product owner will deal with them directly.

The Cons:

You Are Building Someone Else’s Buyers List – A golden rule of affiliate marketing, whilst not set in stone is to build your own list before you promote affiliate offers to them. If you just send cold traffic to an affiliate offer you are likely never to hear from them again and even if they didn’t buy anything, the product owner will have done his best to add them to his list and the ones that did buy will be on his buyers list for future promotions. If you can add them to your list first, then all the better for you.

Bad Product Owner = Bad Business For You – If you find top product owners to promote their products this shouldn’t be too much of a problem as most of them value their reputation, but there are always those that don’t provide great support and this can mean you might lose credibility with your customers. Say you build a list of subscribers and you recommend something to them that proves to be a pile of junk do you think they will be eager to follow more recommendations from you? Of course not! So that is why we need to do our due diligence up front.

No Control Over The Product – As you don’t own the product you have no control over it at all. The owner sets the price and has total control of what’s on the sales page including bonuses. You can add your own bonuses to sweeten the deal and this process is easier on some affiliate platforms than others.

Now, The Pros And Cons Of Being A Product Owner/Seller….

The Pros:

You Are In Control – You have total control over the content of the product, the copy on the sales page and the price you sell it at. You also get to choose which marketplace to sell from or even more than one, the choice is yours.

You Keep All The Money – As the product owner all revenue made from sales goes to you. Well almost all! I say “almost” because you will have to pay a fee to the marketplace you sell from and even if you just add a Paypal buy button to your sales page you still pay a fee to PayPal. There’s always someone who wants a share.  😊

Another thing to consider is that by putting your product up for sale at places like Zaxaa, JVZoo and Clickbank you hopefully will get affiliates promoting your products for you and they will be paid a commission which as owner you set the amount.

Affiliates Can Be Good For You – If you attract lots of affiliates who send lot’s and lot’s of traffic to your sales page you can build a list of buyers but also by using a free offer via an exit pop you can build a list of prospects and then you have an audience for any future products you release.

If your products are top quality your affiliates will be only too happy to promote any future offerings you have.

It Pays To Produce – If you create a great product and you build a list of buyers you are on your way to financial freedom BUT!…

I only said that you are ‘on your way’ and not that you have cracked the code. You still have plenty of work to do but the good news is you now know what needs doing so you can rinse and repeat and as your customer base and your list of affiliates grows so does your wealth. Now, I can’t say that you will go on to be financially free because I don’t know how much work you are prepared to put in, but I will say that if you put the effort in you will reap the rewards.

The Cons:

Requires Investment – Creating your own product to sell takes investment in both time and money and can seem like a daunting task if you don’t really have any experience in Internet Marketing. Firstly, the time required initially will depend on your experience as you research your chosen subject. Secondly, you can’t create a product and put up a sales page for free because you need a professional looking sales page which requires professional looking graphics. Sure, you can throw up a basic page with a sales button, but you are looking long term here so start off as you mean to go on. As part of your research check out other products like yours and see which sales pages catch your eye.

They Need Your Support – You simply cannot afford to provide substandard customer service, or your business will fall flat on it’s face and once you lose them you are very unlikely to get them back. Make sure you keep up to date with support issues because if your customers feel they are being ignored they will go elsewhere. If you can afford it, you might want to look at outsourcing your support as it can be very time-consuming answering tickets daily. Outsourcing might not be an option at first but once you start earning good amounts having a good support team is worth its weight in gold.

I am fortunate in having a top guy from the UK to look after my support for me. Not only is he on the ball answering tickets quicker than a speeding bullet but he is probably the most handsome support guy on the web today! 😊😊😊😊

You Have To Know What You Are Talking About – Whilst you don’t have to be the best in the world at what you do, you do have to have some knowledge of what you are trying to sell. If you have zero expertise in any area of Internet Marketing then, in my opinion, you should choose an area you are interested in like traffic generation, list building, social media or whatever you like and become an expert.

You don’t need a university degree in your given subject, but you simply must be able to walk the walk not just talk the talk. For example, if you create a traffic generation guide and you only have 100 visitors a week to your own site no one will take you seriously.

It Could End In Tears – Having a product for sale, whilst being a great way to earn money, it isn’t guaranteed. Just by putting something on any affiliate platform doesn’t mean it will sell and even when you get multiple affiliate requests it doesn’t mean they will sell many copies at all. For example, I had a request for affiliate approval on JVZoo from a guy who had been an affiliate for 4 years. Guess how many sales he made. Yep, zero! Then you get the ones who have 25% refund rates on things they promote. Stay well clear of those guys!

I am not trying to frighten you off recruiting affiliates, but you do need to check out each affiliate platforms method of paying affiliates.

So, by having your own product for sale doesn’t mean you can sit back and watch the money roll in, you still have work to do and by recruiting affiliates you have an army of people spreading the word about you and your product and are not just on your own.

In Conclusion:

So, what’s it to be? What’s best, owning your own product or being an affiliate?

I hope I am not going to disappoint you with my take on this, but I say DO BOTH!

If you have your own product and are steadily building a list of buyers, you can promote affiliate offers to them whenever you like. Now, I am not going into detail about how to do email marketing here but suffice to say, treat your customers well and they will treat you well. This means don’t force promo after promo on them, give them some great free content along the way and now and again recommend something to them.

If you decide to start off as an affiliate before creating your own product, that’s fine, just make sure that wherever possible you are putting them on your list before promoting to them. One way to do this is to download one of my free turnkey cash kits and set it up to start building your list.

Once you’ve built your list, you then you will have that audience to send emails to when you do launch your own product.

To your success!
Stuart Stirling