A Step by Step Guide to Using WordPress for Affiliate Marketing

by WorkFromHome on June 2, 2011

When you are using a website for affiliate marketing, you can save yourself a lot of time and money by using a content management system instead of hiring a designer. WordPress is one of the most popular content management systems available, and amazingly enough, it’s free. WordPress takes only a few mouse clicks to set up using most reputable website hosts, and it gives you a high level of control over your formatting without requiring you to know anything about website programming. Here we’re going to walk you through setting up WordPress and adding the customizations you’ll need to have a successful affiliate marketing website using WordPress as your content management system.

Setting Up WordPress and Getting it Running

Go into the control panel page for your website hosting and go to the Fantastico section. Fantastico is a set of tools for webmasters who want to install different scripts on their hosting account without having to deal with all of the technical details. Choose WordPress from the list, and put in the information it asks you for like the title of your site and what you would like your username and password to be. WordPress uses its own separate account system, and you’re advised to use a password that’s different from any other password you use for any other accounts for better security.

After Fantastico sets up WordPress, it will give you a link to use to log in and get started. The first thing you’re going to want to do when you get logged in is look under the Settings tab on the left and go to Permalinks. You will see a list of possible settings on the page that comes up, but you will want to select the Custom Structure option, and put /%postname%/ in the text box. Don’t forget to press the Save Changes button. This changes the structure of your WordPress URLs so that they make more sense, and this change also makes them more friendly for search engines.

Choosing a Theme and Setting Up Plugins

Now you should go to the Appearance tab and click the Themes button. At the top of this page you should click the tab that says Install Themes. From here you can search for different themes to use on your WordPress website. If you find a theme you like, simply press the install button. You can install different themes in WordPress and switch back and forth whenever you want, so feel free to try a few to find what works best.

Next, you’ll want to go to the Widgets link under the Appearance tab in the left toolbar. This will allow you to decide which items you want in the sidebars for your theme. It’s recommended that you add a widget to list all of the pages of your site so that they can be easily indexed by Google, but you can also add banners and advertisements or whatever you are using for your affiliate marketing campaign.

Finally, go to the Plugins tab, and click Add New. This section allows you to find plugins for WordPress, which are add-on features that can perform a very wide range of functions. For an affiliate marketing website, you’ll want to find plugins to help you manage meta tags and the titles of your pages for SEO purposes. You’ll also want to find a statistics plugin that you like so that you can track what visitors do on your site. You’ll also want a plugin that helps to prevent comment spam, and a plugin that allows you to make easy backups of your WordPress site.

Adding Content and Looking to the Future

At this point your WordPress site will be completely up and running and ready to be used as an affiliate marketing tool. Now you’ ll want to delete the default post and page that comes with the WordPress installation, and start adding your own pages using the options under the Pages tab to add content to your website.

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