What Is Affiliate Marketing & How Does It Works

Disclosure: This page may contain affiliate links. When you click an affiliate link and make a purchase, we get a small compensation at no cost to you. See our Privacy Policy and Disclaimer for more info.

Many bloggers around the world are making a full-time living blogging and promoting products with affiliate marketing.

There are many success stories around the world who are making thousands of dollars per month, some even make the same amount per day, from affiliate marketing.

By seeing this figure many people join affiliate marketing. But this is not something which will make you rich overnight.

This is not a get rich-quick scheme. It’s a real business.

So, if you are tempted to join affiliate marketing, be sure to work hard. Some quit early because they wanted fast results but failed.

So, if you are of the type that want success within few days then this article is not for you.

Read on if you are willing to work hard and have passion to learn and implement the learning with patience.

If you are willing to work hard and have patience then you can easily start earning around $500 to $1000 per month within 6 months to 1 year.

I am not exaggerating this figure. This can actually be achieved by following the right strategies. I have achieved it, so you can.

This guide is written to tell you the exact strategies that Pro-Bloggers around the world are using to earn thousands of dollars every month.

So, are you ready to learn the exact strategies of affiliate marketing and how to implement it into your blog?

Let’s begin!


Step 1 - You apply to join an affiliate program 

Company A has a product X whose market price is Rs Y. If anyone help this company in selling its product, the company will give 30% as commission.

You apply before this company to join as an affiliate to promote its product.


Step 2 - Company will give you an affiliate link 

When the company accept your application they will provide affiliate product's banners and links containing unique affiliate ID to you. This unique ID will help you and the company to track sales.


Step 3 - You place affiliate link on your blog 

Now, you will write an article on this product on your blog explaining in details its features, benefits, pros & cons and price. In this article you will place the banner or link provided by the company containing your unique affiliate id in the article.


Step 4 - Buyer purchases the product through your affiliate link and you get commission 

When a user visit your blog, read this article and clicks on the affiliate link,  he/she would be redirected to the company website. Now, if he/she purchases the product you will get 30% commission on the price of the product.

Above is just an example but basically the affiliate marketing model works in this way only.

Let’s learn some common terms related to affiliate marketing that you will come across in this guide.

Affiliate: One who promotes products and/or services of others in return for an agreed commission for the sale made or lead generated.

Affiliate Program: These are the programs of the merchant that an affiliate promotes to earn a commission.

Before promoting you must agree to the terms and conditions of the affiliate program.

Affiliate Link: This is a special link given by the merchant to the affiliate marketer to promote their product. This link is embedded with a unique tracking code to track sales or leads.

Affiliate Manager: An affiliate manager is a person who manages the affiliate program. You can take help of Affiliate Manager in framing best strategies to promote the product.

Commission: A merchant may pay to an affiliate either in percentage or a fixed amount as may be agreed upon in the affiliate program terms. This payment is called a commission.

ROI: Return On Investment (ROI) is a percentage to calculate how much return you are getting for your investment and efforts.

The formula for calculating ROI is:
ROI = (Gross profit – Investment) / Investment * 100

Affiliate programs may pay by 3 types of payment terms:

  • Pay Per Sale: On sale, you get a percentage of the product sale price.
  • Pay Per Click: You get paid for only directing visitors from your affiliate site to the merchant’s website. Making a sale is not mandatory for payment.
  • Pay Per Lead: You get paid when a visitor fills out a contact form giving his details like name, email, phone, etc.

Affiliate Toolkit Needed To Get You Started

Here is the list of some must-have tools for affiliate marketing.

1. Web Hosting

For creating a blog, web hosting is required. To make your website live on the internet, you need a host for your website. A web hosting company provides space on its server to host your website so that anyone can access your website on the internet.

Thus, basically you buy a space for your website from the web hosting provider to host your website files.

Beginners can go for shared hosting to promote affiliate products. They are cheap and would cost around $4 to $10 per month depending on the hosting plan you purchase.

Following are the best web host from which you can buy the shared hosting plan-

(1) A2hosting
(3) WPX Hosting

You can buy shared hosting from any of these three as they are industry leaders in web hosting.

However, I would recommend you to go for A2hosting as it affordable than the other two and you would get excellent features and service without compromising in quality.

A2hosting provides very fast SSD servers, free SSL certificates, unlimited websites, free backup and much more.

Read my review on A2hosting here.

2. Content Management System (CMS)

WordPress is the most popular content management system managing about 33% of the websites around the world. WordPress is free to install, deploy, and upgrade.

It is also very user friendly. Thus, I would recommend you to create your blog on WordPress.

Thousands of plugins and themes power a flexible and simple interface, which reduces development costs and deployment time.

Now install a premium WordPress theme on your blog.

GeneratePress and AstraPro are the two most popular themes among affiliate marketers.

When you buy any of these, you get a license to build an unlimited number of websites using these themes.

Check out this link to know more about how to create a website.

3. Affiliate Products to Promote

I have compiled a list of 55 most popular affiliate programs which many affiliate marketers are promoting and have earned thousands of dollars from these programs.

Some of the product categories where you can do affiliate marketing are given below.

1. Amazon Associate Program
2. Web Hosting
3. WordPress Themes
4. WordPress Plugins
5. Shareasale
6. JVzoo
7. MunchEye
8. vCommission
9. Maxbounty
10. Clickbank

Also Read: Best Affiliate Programs for Beginners

Download the list of 55 affiliate programs here.

4. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

After you have selected an affiliate product to promote, now write a detailed review about the affiliate product for end-users.

The review should clearly highlight the product’s features, benefits, price and it’s pros and cons.

A review must be written keeping in mind the end-users. The review should solve all the pain or problems of the targeted user. When a user finds that a product is a solution to his problem he is more inclined to buy the product.

After the review is completed and made live, affiliate marketers adopt two strategies to promote affiliate products:

(1) Driving traffic from a search engine like Google and
(2) Paid ads

5. Driving traffic from Google

For driving traffic from search engines like Google you should focus on SEO of the content you have written.

You must follow proper on-page SEO and off-page SEO strategies to drive traffic to your review post without spending any money on paid ads.

In this strategy, you must have patience, as driving traffic organically to your site takes time. It could take anywhere between 3 months to 6 months.

Also, your post must rank on the first page of Google otherwise your site may not get any traffic.

Pro Tip:

Use RankMath plugin for SEO. It is one of the most popular plugins and contains some features that are present in only premium SEO plugins. 

It will provide you with guided tips as to what you need to do with your content to make it more optimized for the keywords you are targeting.

6. Driving Traffic From Paid Advertisements

If you don’t have patience and want quick results, you can go for paid ads like Facebook Ads or Google Ads .

You can hire an expert who can run paid ads for you. Or you can learn for yourself how to create paid ads on Facebook or Google.

Below are some of the courses I recommend which you can purchase to learn everything about Facebook Ads:

7. Email Service and Autoresponder

One of the most effective online marketing strategies is email marketing. You should start giving priority to start building a list of emails from day one.

For effective email marketing, you need an email service provider like Aweber or GetResponse.

These service providers have essential features to automate your emails, segment or tag your subscribers and many more.

So, start using any of these email service providers. Later in this guide, I have mentioned how to use email marketing effectively to promote your affiliate products.

8. Affiliate Link Management Tools

Affiliate links are normally long and look ugly. A traditional affiliate link looks like this:


You can shorten the above link by using the link cloaking method to make it look like a branded URL as shown below.


There are some wonderful WordPress plugins that can help you to cloak affiliate links you have put on your website for promoting affiliate products.
These plugins are - (1) PrettyLinks or (2) ThirstyAffiliates

Right from day one, you should start cloaking affiliate links using any of these plugins as they make those URLs appear more friendly and clickable.

How much you can earn from Affiliate Marketing?

As I have stated in the beginning of the article that when you start a blog on affiliate marketing and put your efforts in writing some very good SEO optimized articles (around 30-40 articles) then you can expect to earn at least $500 to $1000 per month.

But you will have to work hard for at least 6 months before seeing any meaningful results.

You may ask why 6 months?

Because ranking any articles on Google takes time. You will have to do both off-page and on-page SEO. You will also have to create backlinks for your articles.

Implementing all these strategies takes time. It's not that you optimized your articles and created backlinks and right from tomorrow your article will ranking on first page of Google.

It may seems harsh, but reality is that ranking your article higher on Google takes anywhere between 3-6 months.

But if you work hard result is guaranteed.

So, motivate yourself to work hard and you will rewarded with a successful affiliate marketing career.

What is affiliate marketing
Share via
Copy link