Is Affiliate Marketing Profitable?

We hear stories about affiliate marketers making hundreds of thousands of dollars per month. Is it really true? What are the chances of making money through affiliate marketing? Is affiliate marketing really profitable?

On this very blog where Francisco (ditesco) has discussed a lot about affiliate marketing, let me give you an overview of what is involved (and what to expect) when you want to make money through affiliate marketing.


The investment required for affiliate marketing is very little or almost nil. You need not invest on the website. You need not invest in AdWords. You need not invest for web hosting. The number of working hours required for affiliate promotion is also as short as 10 hours per week. What you promote and how you promote through affiliate marketing is very important. The products that you are promoting should fall under the niche that you are focusing on.

Ability to sell

You should have the capability to sell products or services. By associating affiliate products with your products and services, your job as promoter of affiliate products is made easy. You should quote the affiliate product at the most appropriate place making it as a choice for the visitor on your site. At any cost, you should not compel them to go through the products. Compelling visitors to sign up for a newsletter or making them offer their personal information should be avoided. You will be paid for all the traffic routed from your site to the affiliate’s site. You will be paid for the downloads or sales made through your site.


The relevancy factor is very much important in the promotion of affiliate products. You should introduce affiliate products in a quite natural way. For example, if your blog talks about health care issues, you can promote products related to fitness equipments or food supplements. These are appropriate products. You should not place banner ads that talk about cars and bikes. You are not going to do justice to your readers by offering irrelevant products.

However good those products might be if they are not relevant to the topic that you are focusing on, your affiliate promotion will not have impact. It may give negative impact on your site as your visitors may identify you as a sheer promoter of products but not the source for the information they are looking for.

Best Affiliate NetworksYou should find the most appropriate products that solve the requirements of your audience on some of the best affiliate networks. If you are catering to blogging community, you can present tools to improve the productivity. You can suggest tools that check grammatical mistakes, spelling mistakes and tools that help bloggers present unique content on the web. You can also introduce tools to manage email lists and send newsletters automatically such as auto responder. You can introduce new applications that enhance website performance and functionality so that a blogger can better manage comments and reply back.

Support offered

You will get support from the party whose products you are promoting through affiliation. You will be provided assistance to setup their banners on your site. Affiliates guide you on ‘how to promote’ their products. Affiliates provide the resources (books, magazines, audio visual presentations).


You should take care that the products that you promote through affiliation are quality products. Visitors will purchase the products or subscribe to services based on your reputation. You will lose your credibility by offering wrong or inappropriate products. Hence, enough care should be taken that products that you offer are not only relevant but also match all kinds of requirements as expected from a decent product. By choosing big brands which have established presence in the market over a period of time, your image will not come down (although this need not be always true!).

Other benefits

By promoting affiliate products, you will not only advise new products to your audience but also get multiple benefits through the promotion. Your search engine rank increases if your site is quoted by other websites which are doing well in search engine rankings. By associating yourself with big brands, new traffic will be generated. Your site will surface in organic search through Google and other search engines.


Affiliate product promotion will enhance your business provided you promote right products in right time. As you promote good quality products, your site will also get promoted bringing traffic from all corners. This is also an opportunity to earn extra income without going for any extra investment.

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Jane Sheeba

Jane helps bloggers and entrepreneurs to build blogs that succeed.

20 thoughts on “Is Affiliate Marketing Profitable?

  • What are some of the better affiliate marketing companies to work with?

    • It really depends on the niche you’re in Jim. Do a bit of research in your niche and you should be able to find a handful of gems.

  • I think what you mention on the relevancy factor is very important.

    • That’s right Ricardus, relevance is one of the crucial aspects.

  • Keeping it simple is a good idea when it comes to such reviews with an emphasis on what problem it exactly solves and how the quality of the product suits customer needs.

  • Affiliate marketing is indeed profitable though not easy. Its a big cycle when you reach at a level that you start making profit from an affiliate marketing. Thanks for this great post, Jane.

  • This is the best explanation on affiliate marketing I think I have ever read. It was very concise and straightforward. Thanks.

  • nicely written article on Affiliates, Jane.

    Something that stood out in your post, is the importance of product quality. That may be similarly linked to product relevance, as far as the customers actual needs are concerned.
    I am close to jumping into the affiliate waters(need to make a few adjustments beforehand) and the one thing that I am in two minds with, is if I genuinely trust the product(Have purchased, thoroughly tested, etc)
    Yet, later down the track, the product develops floors.
    It may make promoting the product with the same level of assurance, a little difficult.

  • I think affiliate marketing is without a doubt still alive and kicking, however, I think the playing field as a whole has completely changed. It is important to build up trust with your visitors to your website and in turn if they trust you and the products you are promoting then they will come back to you time and time again.

    If you promote rubbish then you will find you are on the path for defeat, however, if you choose your offerings carefully and promote them well then there is a place for affiliate marketing on any blog or website. Understanding your website visitors, what they are looking for and presenting it to them in a professional manor is the key.

  • Nice article Jane whatever you write about affiliate marketing is so truth it doesn’t require too much investment but the skill for getting promotions is bit tough now that time mostly people aware about internet marketing and it’s too competitive and most popular way for income.So I don’t think its easy like adsense or other adservers.

  • This takes time and could be more than six months to a year before you see a good return. Another way is to have your site in your signature line and start posting on forums that are relevant to your product. Building up back links is another step whereby you build traffic.

  • I believe it is profitable, just in that it allows a variety of marketing strategies to come together to promote one product. Each strategy hits a different niche, and can be done fairly inexpensively.

  • I think it comes down to your niche. Is your influence within your niche so strong that web site visitors trust you enough to go with your affiliates? Or is your site more likely something that came across randomly and will just click out to a PPC ad?

  • Aff marketing can be hugely profitable. It won’t happen overnight. But it’s an amazing business model because you don’t handle inventory or deal with customers (although I spend a fair amount of time helping readers who have questions in my blogs’ comments).

    You have access to tens of thousands of products so you can pretty much create a website on any topic and include affiliate marketing as a strategy. Not sure where to start? Look around your home. What do you use and love? Write about that.

  • Affiliate marketing was profitable and is profitable if done correctly otherwise you can lose money that you put in Advertising…Thanks for the nice post Jane,you have covered great points

  • Hello Jane,

    Nice points regarding affiliate marketing. For some Internet marketers, affiliate marketing is a difficult task to take. It is because you need to be a better salesman in order to make sales. First, you need to promote the right products, then you need to market your site in the right direction and so on and so forth. I think the most important aspect is to have a trustworthy brand in online business. If you can influence people, you are surely going to have an easy way to make money out of affiliate marketing.


  • Hey Jane!
    quite a comprehensive post on affliate marketing!
    Though i still believe that apart from affliate marketing,you can also do article marketing for that particular product that wanna be affliate of or generate sales off!

  • Every affiliate marketer is always looking for the successful market that gives the biggest paycheck. Sometimes they think it is a magic formula that is readily available for them. Actually, it is more complicated than that. It is good marketing practices that have been proven over years of hard work and dedication.

  • I think affiliate marketing is difficult and not for every one. only those with lot of patience and hard work could hope to succeed!!!1

  • For me, Google Adsense is the best solution to make profit from internet.

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