As you’re setting up your blog, certain plugins should be added to make your affiliate marketing web site as powerful as possible. Since you only really have full control of your blog plugins on self-hosted blogs, when you start affiliate marketing you want to set up your own WordPress blog on your own hosting account.

Assuming you’ve installed your new blog, it’s time to decide which plugins you’ll want to include to help automate some of your affiliate marketing tasks. No doubt you’d like to start earning affiliate commissions as quickly as possible, so the more you can automate your systems without needing to become too technical the better!

The success of your affiliate marketing blog is dependent on targeted traffic, so the most important plugins are all going to be used to aid in that cause. First, you’ll want to make sure the search engines are aware of every posting you make, so one of the various Search Engine Optimization (SEO) plugins is the first to install. These usually control your title, keyword and description tags and sometimes the URL chosen for each post, so be sure to pick one and install it before you make even your first post to your affiliate blog.

Once your audience and the search engines find your affiliate marketing web site, you’ll want them all to be able to find everything you have for them there. For that, use 1 or 2 plugins designed to create sitemaps. The search engines will want to follow an RSS feed while the visitors will want a simple linking structure, so be sure whichever plugins you use create both an HTML sitemap and an XML sitemap. You don’t need to know the differences or the technical aspects – just be sure your affiliate marketing blogs are sporting both.

You can also get both direct traffic and search engine friendly backlinks to each post using plugins. Use one to notify your Twitter followers each time you post, and be sure your visitors see buttons they can use to let their followers know about your post through Web 2.0 sites like Twitter, Google Buzz and Facebook at the very minimum. Numerous variations exist of plugins that will link to your affiliate marketing web site from the social bookmarking sites as well, so take time to explore a few and choose the one that’s best for your particular strategies.

Those are the basic plugins you’ll want installed for your affiliate marketing blogs, and with the advances in today’s WordPress system they all install with push-button simplicity – if you’re not familiar with how to install them either check the help files at or search for how-to help at directories like Google or YouTube.

As you become more experienced as an affiliate blogger, you’ll want to install plugins for your audio and video files too, to help attract targeted traffic from the podcasting and vlogging worlds as well – these are huge additional lead sources you may be able to tap into using your affiliate marketing blogs as you advance.

Marketing mentor, coach and speaker Doug Champigny has been teaching companies new marketing strategies since the 1970’s, having owned and operated his own retail advertising agency before transferring to marketing online full-time since 1996. A recognized expert in how to market a product online or offline and master of these new online marketing strategies, Doug Champigny is the creator of the PowerStart Marketing coaching program and the Affiliate Marketing PowerStart coaching program, and is occasionally available for private 1-on-1 consultations and mentoring as well.