As evident from my title, online pals, we're going to talk about affiliate marketing today. More specifically, how you can greatly benefit from that business model. So, if you have no idea which are the best affiliate programs to promote on your blog, stick with me - I'll hook you up!
If you're a newbie with barely any experience, it can be frustrating going through all of the options currently available online.
I mean, which one should you go for when they look all the same to you?
Well, they're not and your time is too precious to be wasted with anything less than the best, right?
This post may contain affiliate links. See my disclosure here.
A Brief Look At Affiliate Marketing
First and foremost, I want to make sure that not a single piece will be missing in this article. Therefore, let me start with a short walk-through on affiliate marketing in case some of you are fresh out of the blogging gate.
To sum up, affiliate marketing is a process where an affiliate (you) promote somebody else's products and/or services (vendor) to an audience. And you'll earn from that by implementing affiliate links of these products within your content.
When a person buys a product through your unique link, you'll be rewarded with a commission.
Now, how do you begin to do all that? Meaning, where do you have to go to receive your affiliate links?
Basically, you'll be grabbing them from affiliate programs.
What Is an Affiliate Program?
Strictly by definition, an affiliate program is an arrangement where online merchant websites agree to pay commissions to affiliate websites in exchange for traffic the latter will send them. For more info and detailed explanation, you can visit How Stuff Works.
Simply said, think of the affiliate programs as large networks that display hundreds of products that are available for promotion. Once you choose a product to work with, the affiliate program will provide you with your own unique link that will lead your readers to that product.
If I have to guess, those of you with no experience are more than confused right now. Above all, the first nagging question we all face at the start is which affiliate program will be the right choice?
Truth to be told, there's no short answer on that - it depends on so many factors!
That being said, here is a list of awesome programs that will deliver for you even if you're a complete beginner. All you have to do is choose the ones that are a perfect fit for your niche and your target audience!
The Best Affiliate Programs To Promote - Take Your Pick!
In the interest of full disclosure, there are many affiliate networks that I consider better than average. As such, there is no doubt in my mind that you would definitely benefit from working with them.
However, you can't join all of them even if you try!
Considering the number of programs we're talking about...
Even more, jumping on every single affiliate offer that comes before your eyes is one of the biggest affiliate marketing mistakes you could possibly make.
Instead, have a look at the affiliate programs that have passed the test of time and continue to rock the world of its affiliates year after year:
1) Amazon Associates
For starters, I begin with this one not because is my favorite - it certainly isn't!
But because it's one of the most popular and well-respected affiliate programs in the world.
Honestly, I can understand the fascination - Amazon Associates will provide you with thousands of products to promote. Plus, it's suitable for everyone, no matter the niche your website focuses on.
Make no mistake, though, this network is not perfect!
What I Like About Amazon Associates:
- Easy to join and work with
- Unbelievable number of products to write about (and earn from)
- Does work for any kind of niche blog
- Cookie window - if a person clicks on your link but doesn't purchase the products you're promoting, you can still make a commission from anything that person buys in the next 24 hours
What I Don't Like About Amazon Associates
- Their payment system (gift cards and cheque) - quite limited. If you don't live in the USA and your bank doesn't accept cheques from them (like mine!), there is no point for you to join them
- Support - I'm not working with AA, but I've read tons of complaints regarding the support and lack thereof provided
- Pretty low commission rate (1-10%) - for a product with a value of $10 and a commission rate of 2% for example, you'll make cents
Now, this one is very high on my list of the best affiliate programs to promote for a couple of reasons.
Firstly, ClickBank over-delivers for the needs of my site considering the majority of its products for sale are digital.
Secondly, you'll be able to earn affiliate commissions of up to 70% of the product's price.
In addition, this affiliate platform is doing a lot to help its affiliates - it will provide you with promotional tools for some products.
What I Like About ClickBank
- Everyone can join and earn - your geographical location doesn't matter
- Awesome payment system - when you make your first $100, you'll be able to receive them through direct deposit into your bank
- A very high commission rate
- Promotional help
What I Don't Like About ClickBank
- Some products are of low quality - be careful and do a lot of research!
Truth to be told, this network will be perfect for you if these are your first attempts to work as an affiliate.
For instance, you'll be able to start earning almost right away. Even more, there is no need to grab different affiliate links for different products.
To clarify, the way Skimlink works is by converting your existing product links into affiliate ones.
Ain't that easy or what?
What I Like About Skimlinks
- Get ready to make affiliate commissions for products you didn't manage to get approved for
- Simple solution for beginners
- s plenty of time
- Low payout threshold (10 pounds)
What I Don't Like About Skimlinks
- UK-based company - if you live in another country, it's possible to have difficulties using the program
- Delayed start - in order to use Skimlinks, you'll have to wait to be approved
- It requires adding code or a plugin - if you don't know what you're doing, you may damage your blog. Likewise, extra plugins can slow down the site
4) Wealthy Affiliate (My Winner From The Best Affiliate Programs To Promote)
First and foremost, Wealthy Affiliate is an online teaching program that will show you how to create a successful affiliate marketing based website. It's FREE to join!
Personally, most of the credit for my current lifestyle (working from home and making a full-time income blogging) goes to this place.
Even more, WA will allow you to make money on the platform itself. Likewise, its affiliate program is delicious - up to 50% in commissions!
And the best part is that you'll be able to earn as an affiliate from day one, no matter the type of membership you'll go for!
Important Note: Your website will become a success thanks to that teaching platform even if you don't promote it. The choice is all yours!
What I Like About Wealthy Affiliate
- Free to join
- Nice commission rate - up to 50% + recurring commissions
- Everyone can earn from day one, even as a starter member
- Simple payment system - PayPal and bank transfer
What I Don't Like About Wealthy Affiliate
- The commission rate for free members is lower than 50%
In case you don't know what BigScoots is, this company is fast becoming the preferred choice of a web hosting provider for millions of bloggers.
Thanks to its top-notch services and never sleeping tech support, I won't be surprised if BigScoots transforms itself into the industry leader.
Besides, this company has an affiliate program that is hard to stay away from.
I mean, you'll receive $5 just for joining it. Not to mention, you'll be able to earn a 90% commission for a single sale!
What I Like About BigScoots
- You can be an affiliate even you don't use their hosting services
- Get $5 as soon as you sign up
- Chance for 90% commissions
- Pretty simple to work with - you'll locate your affiliate link in less than a minute
What I Don't Like About BigScoots
- Honestly, I'm trying hard, but I can't think of anything
Apparently, the talk about web hosting is not quite over yet. What can I do when BlueHost's affiliate program is an opportunity that shouldn't be ignored?
So, it's one thing that BlueHost is still considered the smartest choice for a hosting provider. Moreover, it will allow you to earn pretty attractive affiliate commissions.
To clarify, BlueHost will pay you $65 for every person that starts to use their services thanks to your recommendation.
What I Like About BlueHost
- A piece of cake to use
- Cash in $65 per referral
- Convenient payment system - PayPal
- You can promote it without using their hosting service
What I Don't Like About BlueHost
- High payout threshold - $100
- Hard to make a sale - tons of people are promoting it already
- No recurring commissions
Once your online business starts to heat up, you'll have to commit some of your time to email campaigns. In order to do that, you'll be lost without a good email service provider.
And ConvertKit is not just good - it's the preferred choice of the majority of bloggers nowadays.
Personally, I've been using it for a year now and I'm quite satisfied with its performance.
On top of that, ConvertKit has an amazing affiliate program - how does commissions of 30% sound to you?
By the way, did you know that Pat Flynn from Smart Passive Income makes thousands of dollars in affiliate sales from promoting ConvertKit alone?
What I Like About ConvertKit
- Makes my email campaigns a piece of cake to handle
- Has a free trial
- Nice commission rates - 30% on their paid plans
- Easy to earn from - more and more bloggers are choosing it every single day
What I Don't Like About ConvertKit
- Minimum $100 earned before you're allowed to request a payout
8) Thrive Themes
Now, in case you have no idea who Thrive Themes are:
They're responsible for the way my website looks, my opt-in forms, and tons of other pro-blogging tools that I can't get enough of!
Most of all, I'm sharing my admiration of Thrive with the fastest growing fan-base online - the number of bloggers choosing them for their business is increasing with the speed of light.
After all, it makes sense - everything other so, Thrive Themes can do so much better!
For instance, their main focus is on increasing your conversation rate from day one. Actually, you can see for yourself everything Thrive will do for your business here.
But we're here to talk about the best affiliate programs to promote, aren't we?
Thrive has a lot to stand for in that department - it will get you 35% commission per purchase + 25% in recurring commissions!
What I Like About Thrive Themes
- The membership is the ultimate all-in-one blogging and marketing toolbox - it offers everything your website could possibly need to transform readers into customers
- Its affiliate program is quite generous - you'll keep getting paid for a single sale thanks to the recurring commissions
- Easy payment system - your earnings will be delivered through PayPal on the 1st day of the month
What I Don't Like About Thrive Themes
- Sorry, I can't write anything here - choosing Thrive is one of the best decisions I've ever made for my business
9) Elegant Themes
Similar to Thrive, Elegant Themes can do a lot about the professional look of your website.
Actually, I went with their Divi theme in my first months of blogging. And that theme is definitely worth the look.
Then again, as you already know, Thrive is my personal winner.
But if you don't like them for some reason, then Elegant Themes is the next best thing for your blog in my opinion.
Plus, their affiliate program is ready to pay you 50% commission for every customer you send their way.
What I Like About Elegant Themes
- Professional looking themes - considered some of the best online
- Nice commission rate - 50% per sale and recurring commission, payment is through PayPal
- Cookie duration - for 180 days!
What I Don't Like About Elegant Themes
- Not that easy to make a sale - the themes alone are a bit expensive
As a rule of a thumb, I like to the best for last!
Make no mistake, Shopify is certainly one of the best affiliate programs to promote - you can make up to $2,000 for a single sale!
Kind of hard to stumble upon another program that can measure up, isn't?
To clarify, Shopify is an e-commerce platform that will allow you to build your own online store and sell products or services.
For much more detailed info, feel free to explore the Shopify Reviews.
What I Like About Shopify
- It's the industry leader and the go-to place if you're interested to create a successful online store
- Tons of possibilities to earn affiliate commissions - different rates, depending on their paid plans
- You can cash in $2K for just one sale
What I Don't Like About Shopify
- Some of their plans can get expensive, so it's not that easy to make a sale
Additional Thoughts On The Best Affiliate Programs To Promote
Quite frankly, my list is just a drop in the ocean where affiliate programs are being concerned.
However, I've done my best to collect the ones that are more than suitable if you're just starting with affiliate marketing.
Above all, you shouldn't let your lack of experience to hold you back from the chance to make money online early on.
That being said, the best advice I can give is this:
As awesome the affiliate sales can be, they won't just happen for you unless you bother to master the affiliate marketing first.
And that will take some time, commitment, and the best online coaching possible.
Personally, I got mine from Wealthy Affiliate. This teaching program is free to join and is an excellent choice for complete beginners:
In short, Wealthy Affiliate will show you how to turn a single passion of yours into a thriving affiliate marketing business.
You can start today by creating a free account here.
Or you can check My Free Guide to walk you through the 4 steps process!
Alright, blogging tribe, this is it for today!
I really hope that my list of the best affiliate programs to promote will guide you through the crazy world of affiliate marketing.
But what if it doesn't and you still have questions on this topic?
Well, ask me anything in the comments section and you'll get your answers the first chance I get!