How to Start an Affiliate Marketing Blog and Grow it to $100K
How to Start an Affiliate Marketing Blog and Grow it to $100K

How to Start an Affiliate Marketing Website and Grow it to $100K

In this 3-parts guide, you will learn, step by step, how to start and grow an affiliate marketing website that can make you a decent income, and you can sell it for more than $100K.

  • In this article, we will discuss what affiliate marketing is, how to make it work for you, how to research a lucrative niche, how to identify the right keywords and content you want to read, and how to create a buyer persona so you will know how you address your content to.
  • In the second part – How to Create an Affiliate Marketing Website and Write Awesome Content, we will set up the website, add content, design necessary pages, connect social media profiles, etc.
  • The third part, How to Grow Your Affiliate Marketing Website & Make More Money, shows you how to optimize your website to rank well in search engines and find other ways to bring traffic. I recommend reading this part if you own an affiliate marketing blog and want more visitors.
To clarify from the start, the monetize.info affiliate marketing website makes nearly $35K per year in its 3rd year of existence. Other websites we started for clients following the exact blueprint are doing better.

This guide provides everything you need to create a successful affiliate marketing website.

Let’s start!

What is affiliate marketing, and how does it work?

According to Rakuten Advertising research, 81% of brands rely on affiliate programs. If you want to step into the game and learn what it takes to become a successful affiliate marketer, then keep reading.

And what’s the best way of gathering an audience and compellingly promoting the products to them modernly? If you answered a blog or a website, then you were right.

Action: Look for some affiliate programs and see their commission structure, what helpful materials they are offering, etc.

Examples of Profitable Affiliate Marketing Websites

Here are several affiliate marketing websites that make a fortune online. Affiliate marketing is enormous, so there are thousands of such websites, even hundreds of thousands, in my opinion. But I’ve chosen only five from different niches. This way, you will know what an affiliate marketing website looks like.

1. NerdWallet

Affiliate Marketing Blog Example - NerdWallet
Affiliate Marketing Blog Example – NerdWallet

Nerdwallet is essentially a review affiliate site for financial products. It covers everything from credit cards to mortgages to investing and insurance. It has stellar content, an exceptional user interface, and an excellent marketing team.

Their stats look impressive: 11M visitors/month, 50000 backlinks, a DR of 83, 170K Facebook followers, and 65K Twitter followers.

2. Just A Girl And Her Blog

JustAGirlAndHerBlog - Affiliate Marketing Blog Example
JustAGirlAndHerBlog – Affiliate Marketing Blog Example

This blog is run by Abby, who writes about DIY, crafts, and organization. It’s a trendy blog, and since Abby shares her income reports, we know she makes about $40,000+ per month.

Abby makes most of her money through affiliate marketing (mainly through Amazon Associates and hosting affiliate marketing with Bluehost) and selling her courses.

Abby’s blog stats look impressive for a personal blog: 53K visitors/month, 4000 backlinks, a DR of 65, 32K Facebook followers, 40K Youtube subscribers, and 8K Twitter followers.

3. Safewise

Safewise - Affiliate Marketing Blog Example
Safewise – Affiliate Marketing Blog Example

This affiliate marketing blog provides in-depth reviews and opinions on the best home security and home automation products. It probably earns most of its income from promoting OfferVault pay-per-call programs like Vivint, which pays up to $560 for a qualified sale. 

Safewise affiliate marketing blog stats: 485K visitors/month, 7000 backlinks, a DR of 75, 14K Facebook followers, 40K Youtube subscribers, and just 1,5K Twitter followers.

4. Dog Food Advisor

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Dog Food Advisor helps owners choose the best food for their four-legged friends. The website owner, Mike, monetizes the website through affiliate links and is featured as a “Buying Tip.” No other forms of advertising exist, including banner ads or pop-ups, under or overs. The site probably has a mailing list of hundreds of thousands, so that’s another potential revenue source.

Dog Food Advisor affiliate marketing blog stats: 542K visitors/month, 5000 backlinks, a DR of 76, 280K Facebook followers, and just 2,4K Twitter followers.

5. Dating Advice

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Dating Advice aims to help people improve their dating skills and find the best dating site. Its focus on expert advice and emphasis on answering genuine questions essentially mainstream dating. This affiliate marketing website makes most of its money by referring people to dating sites such as Match, eHarmony, etc.

Dating Advice affiliate marketing blog stats: 413K visitors/month, 3600 backlinks, a DR of 78,13K Facebook followers, and 14 K Twitter followers.

Action: Look at these affiliate marketing blogs. Analyze their content and community, and, most importantly, introduce affiliate offers and promote the content.

How to choose a profitable niche for your website?

Niche research for affiliate marketing can be dull and take time. But if you do this one step quickly, you’ll regret it in the long run. Could you take my word on this? Investing a lot of time and money in the long run in a niche that doesn’t make you too much profit or is also competitive is frustrating.

Here’s a quick tip for finding a profitable affiliate marketing niche: “Identify a niche where you can promote products with a HIGH sales volume and LOW competition.”

Related: Affiliate Marketing for Beginners [Complete Guide]

There is a complete section on choosing an affiliate marketing niche in the Affiliate marketing guide for beginners guide I’ve written. Read it first, and then you can come back to this guide.

Questions you should ask yourself when choosing an affiliate marketing niche:

  • What are my passions?
  • Can this niche be profitable for me?
  • What topics can I comfortably write about for 50 blogs or more?
  • Does this niche have exciting products and services to offer?
  • Does this niche have available affiliate programs?

Please spend enough time finding the right niche.

Here are, in my opinion, the best niches for affiliate marketing now and beyond.

The Best Niches for Affiliate Marketing

Parenting, Prepping & Surviving, Personal Health, Weight loss, Cryptocurrencies, Relationships, Gambling, Green energy, Remote work, Cybersecurity, Finance, and Making Money Online.

Related: Best Niches for Affiliate Marketing 

The affiliate marketing niches mentioned above are selected based on the popularity and high returns for the affiliate marketers. They have worked great in their effectiveness in attracting maximum traffic and keep doing it in the long run.

Do not forget that selecting a niche is the foundation of how much money you will make through affiliate marketing. Hence, if you fail to choose a good one, all your efforts will be in vain. That’s my second warning on this matter. I have been there and done that.

Action: Do niche research and find at least 2-3 niches you would like to start a blog. Then, narrow the list to only one. If your chosen niche doesn’t work, you have the alternatives ready.

Define Your Target Audience

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is trying to appeal to everyone. Instead, narrow down everyone to a smaller group of people who want to buy and have the money to buy your product.

For example, if you sell dog jumpers, your audience doesn’t include people who don’t own dogs, so you don’t want to appeal to them.

What is the target audience?

You may think that the target market and target audience are the same. They are entirely different marketing terms.

The target audience is the people you propose your marketing and advertising efforts to.

target market is anyone interested in your products or services, and your target audience is the people to whom you recommend a specific marketing asset or ad. The target audience is a part of your target market.

Facebook is an excellent example of what you should do. They allow you to narrow your audience based on demographics and other characters. You can set an income range, target males or females, or exclude anyone with children. It all depends on your marketing plan.

marketing asset can be a landing page, Facebook post, email, or product page.

Try to establish empathy with the audience you are planning to target. Know their difficulties, how they feel about them, and what they do to figure them out. In my experience, the best way to learn this is through monitoring conversations in groups, forums, blog comments, and social media.

I know you want to learn more about everything, so I have a link to help you. Join HubSpot Academy for free. Get free online certifications, product documentation, and training videos to learn what you need to succeed.

Action: Define your target audience for your marketing assets.

Find Affiliate Marketing Programs

Now that you know the niche where you want to build an authoritative website and set up the target niche, it’s time to find affiliate marketing programs. When we look for affiliate marketing programs, we look for products to review and advertise on our website and make commissions through their affiliate programs. Let’s make sure we are on the same page.

Why didn’t we start our research with affiliate marketing programs if they are crucial in making income? That’s because while the authority blog we build around a niche remains the same, we will change affiliate programs occasionally. We will get rid of those that do not perform well and test new ones that have better products, better commissions, etc.

There are three places I use to find affiliate programs:

1. Find affiliate programs through affiliate networks

Affiliate networks bring together thousands of publishers (bloggers) and advertisers. Signing up for an affiliate network gives you access to thousands of affiliate programs. You get performance details, advertising creatives, etc.

How to look for affiliates on CJ
How to look for affiliate programs on CJ Affiliate Network

Our Top 21 Affiliate Marketing Networks, PROs and CONs for each network, how to sign up to get accepted, and other helpful information.

I recommend looking into ShareASale, CJ, Amazon Associates, and Clickbank. You will find several affiliate programs unless you are into a tiny niche. The advantage of using an affiliate network is that all the earnings are centralized in one place.

2. Find independent affiliate programs

Believe it or not, many more affiliate programs are run independently by product creators without using affiliate networks. That’s because they have proprietary affiliate software, want complete control of their affiliates, etc.

Related: High Paying Affiliate Programs for Bloggers and Marketers 

There are many places to find affiliate programs. I would start with affiliate program directories, doing some Google searches on the most available products in your niche + affiliate program. Then, you can visit your competitors, see which products they advertise, and search for their corresponding affiliate programs.

3. Select the best affiliate programs

Now, you should have a pretty good list of affiliate marketing programs. Don’t jump in and sign up for them. Before affiliate managers accept you as a publisher, they want to see your website and traffic sources.

Some affiliate marketers are very picky about choosing blogs. They don’t want their brand advertised on shady or questionable websites, so we must first build an excellent affiliate marketing website.

We can apply with our blog and at least 200 visitors ready.

As a rule of thumb, aim for affiliate programs that pay good commissions (at least 15-20%) and select high-paying products. Let’s face it: The time to review, optimize, and create traffic streams is the same for a $49 or $490 product. But the money you make is ten times more on the second.

Find The Most Important Keywords

Discover the best topics for your content, find the best keywords, drive fast traffic to your website, and get quality backlinks. If you do it right, all of that will skyrocket your rankings.

You have probably seen that most guides mention keyword research as the most important thing for creating content. But no one tells you that even if you optimize your blog post for important keywords, there is no guarantee that Google will rank you for that specific keyword.

My advice is to concentrate on creating content for the audience. Please don’t focus on keywords because they will be natural in your blog post. Later, you can optimize it for keywords you already rank for.

Don’t get me wrong. Keywords are essential, but not like they used to be. With this tactic, you’ll find only content that is proven to work. You need to create a better version of it. But first, let me show you how to find keywords.

How to find keywords for your website?

You’ll do this with a free tool called Ubersuggest. You can do it with any other free or paid keyword tool, but I like this one because I can do it all in one place. This is how you do it.

Go to Ubersuggest. The first thing you’ll see is a search box. If your website is, for example, about coffee tables, then type coffee table in the box.

As you can see, it will show your keywords, suggestions, and related keywords. I wasn’t aware that coffee tables are so popular. In 10 seconds, you already have some right keywords and ideas for your future blog posts. I usually write down keywords and content ideas on paper. It’s easier to keep an eye on them while writing posts.

When you scroll down, you’ll see a list of top pages for that particular keyword.

Click on Show Keywords to see which are driving visitors to those pages. You’ll get this.

I write down all the valuable keywords on paper. Aim for the long-tail keywords. Remember, you are looking for high volume and CPC keywords but low SD(up to 50 is good). I include keywords with high SD and spread them across my blog posts where applicable.

How to do keyword research with ahrefs

Here is a video guide created by the ahrefs team to help you learn how to do keyword research to find keywords you SHOULD target.

The result? More rankings and organic traffic for your website.

Action: Create a list of keywords and topics that your audience will be interested in. Also, analyze your competitors using these keywords and see what you can do better.
It is time for a recap here. So now you know what affiliate marketing is. You saw some great blogs that bank thousands of $$$ monthly through affiliate marketing, and you’ve chosen the niche and the target audience.

Affiliate Marketing Websites FAQ

What is affiliate marketing and how it works?

Affiliate marketing is performance-based marketing, where you earn a commission by selling others’ products or services. That means if someone buys something through your affiliate links, you get paid.

Can I make money with affiliate marketing?

Yes, you can earn money by promoting products and taking commissions through affiliate marketing programs. Companies are willing to share a cut of the profits if you send them customers.

How much can I make with an affiliate marketing blog?

No one can give you an exact figure. It depends significantly on your niche, the competition, and, most importantly, your skill in choosing affiliate programs and promoting the products on your website. With affiliate marketing, you can make hundreds of thousands yearly by bringing quality traffic that generates sales. Be persistent and continually improve your blog.

Can affiliate marketing make you rich?

Yes. Affiliate marketing blogs make more than one million in profits yearly. It will not be easy to replicate their success, but you can come close with persistence and scaling your work.

Which affiliate marketing programs are legitimate?

Legitimate affiliate programs are free to join, well-established, and hold a high rating with sites like Trustpilot and the Better Business Bureau. Your best bet is to join affiliate marketing networks like ShareASale, ClickBank, Cj, and Amazon Associates, as they vet all the programs.

Conclusions on how to start an affiliate website

Congrats on reaching the end of the 1st part of our guide. Now you know how affiliate marketing works, how to research a lucrative niche, identify the right keywords and content and create a buyer persona so you will learn how to address your content.

Check the second part, where I will show you how to set up the blog, add content, design necessary pages, connect social media profiles, etc.

If you already have one, go to the final part, where I show you how to optimize your blog to rank well in search engines and find other ways to bring traffic.

Do you look for multiple methods besides affiliate marketing to monetize your blog? Check out the sequence of this article to learn how to monetize your blog.

How to Start an Affiliate Marketing Blog and Grow it to $100K - Monetize.info
How to Start an Affiliate Marketing Blog and Grow it to $100K – Monetize.info

Do you have an affiliate marketing blog or want to set up one?

Let me know in the comments form below.

Many website owners lose, each month, between 25% and 75% of possible revenue. Do you want to monetize your website better? Hire me as your monetization consultant and let's make more money.
Want to show your product or service to 60k readers interested in monetization?
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About Daniel S.

Daniel is the founder of Digital Media Intelligence digital agency and digital marketing manager here at Monetize.info.Since 2005 he helps online business owners to establish a presence online and win the digital race.

8 comments

  1. Really appreciate your efforts, i am working on affiliate marketing, worth reading this great information. I didn’t setup blog yet but now I ll start my blog.

  2. Hi! I’m Ajay Nagarwal from India.

  3. Hi Daniel! I like your guide. Being a newbie I take the help where I can get it! I want to introduce a few tips in my tactics, and then I shall report back.

  4. Thanks for the nice review and for the valuable feedback, Justin.
    Emoji Toolbar v1.0.1 has just been released. It adds another Emoji Picker button in the top-level toolbar so no additional dropdown click is required anymore 😉

  5. Hi Dear, What a great piece of information. I had to read 10 different articles to have all those pieces of information that you have put in place in a single article. I’ve had a tough time with the best Affiliate Marketing several days ago and, even though it did not seem to yield any outcome – your article pointed out. Learned a couple of things here that I was doing.

  6. zappkode academy

    Great blog submission to understand about the affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is the mejar role in the digital marketing field.

  7. I was surprised that Dating Advice can be a profitable affiliate marketing blog. Excited to know more about your articles, Daniel. Great art!

  8. Thanks for sharing

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