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Affiliate Marketing Success: Everything You Need to Know in 2023


  • By Editor Team
  • 01 Apr, 2024
  • Guide
  • 17 Min Read
Last Update: 01 Apr, 2024

Affiliate marketing is a common way for online marketers to make money and is also quite profitable. Even before the Internet started, people would send their friends, family, or other interested parties to a business to get rewards or discounts. It’s just like today’s affiliate marketing. The advantage is, you don’t have to work with customer service or come up with new product ideas.

Imagine all you need is an online website to make money. Affiliate marketing allows you to do this without having to create your own product or service. Sounds good, right?

According to Statista, business spending on affiliate marketing in the United States will reach 8.2 billion in 2023. That is why we will break down the keys to affiliate marketing success. Don’t go anywhere.

What Is Affiliate Marketing?

The process in which an affiliate marketer earns a commission for marketing a product of another person or company is called affiliate marketing. Here, an affiliate marketer promotes another person’s or company’s product or service in return for a commission. The person or company, on the other hand, boost and grow sales.

The Amazon affiliate program is one of the most popular and best affiliate programs in the world. Amazon offers commission to the marketers when someone buys a product through the amazon affiliate link. This is effective and easy affiliate marketing for beginners as there are tons of amazon affiliate websites.        

How Affiliate Marketing Works?

The entire process of affiliate marketing depends on three factors. The process cycles within these 3 factors. These 3 factors are – 

  • The seller or product creator
  • The affiliate marketer or advertiser
  • The consumer

Seller or Product Creator

The seller or product creator has a product or service to market with a retail tag. The product can be anything from a physical object like household goods to services like tutorials. This can either be a person or a large enterprise. 

The seller or product creator relies on the advertiser or affiliate marketer to market or promote their products.  

Affiliate Marketer or Advertiser

Affiliate marketer or advertiser is either an individual or a company that promotes the products or services of the seller or product creator in an appealing way to potential customers. They convince customers to buy products in return for a decent commission. The affiliate marketer or advertiser receives a portion of the revenue when customers end up purchasing a product. The affiliate marketer or advertiser is also known as a publisher. 

We recommend you best affiliate marketing WordPress theme for comparison, coupon, and multivendor options: Blurb – Money Making WordPress Theme For Affiliate Marketing

The Consumer

Surprisingly, consumers unknowingly become the drivers of affiliate marketing. The consumer helps both affiliate marketers and sellers by clicking affiliate links for specific products. Then, the advertiser and seller share the profit that is included in the retail price. Many times, the consumer is not aware of the affiliate marketing infrastructure behind his purchase. 

Buying products from affiliate links doesn’t mean the consumers are paying more.  

How affiliate program works

How to Increase Affiliate Marketing Success in 7 Steps

There are many affiliate marketing programs to boost your sales. Many free affiliate programs can be the top affiliate programs, there are no inbound rules that only paid affiliate programs are the best. That being said, we found the following 7 rules for affiliate marketing success –

Determine the perfect affiliate marketing platform 

Do you know?

You can even use Instagram for affiliate marketing.

However, people generally use either a blog website or a YouTube channel to build an audience and increase affiliate sales. Between these two, a blog website is quite popular and cost-effective. You only need to spend a few dollars per month to run a blog website.

Another platform for affiliate marketing is YouTube. Many prefer YouTube for affiliate marketing as uploading content is free. 

No matter which platform you choose for affiliate marketing, optimize the website or video for search engines. After that, add affiliate links in your content or in the video descriptions. 

Remember, you need to disclose the affiliate links you are including. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) wants to be transparent when it comes to approving you.

If you use a blog, create a standalone page, or include it in the footer of your website like this:

And if it is YouTube, include this in the description of your video – 

 Work on the most suitable niche

The competition for starting a blog is sky-high. According to Statista, the number of bloggers only in the US has reach 31.7 million in 2020. When you are a beginner, it is always better to focus on a single niche rather than multiple niches. For instance, food is a huge category as there are many types of food in the world. Instead, try something more specific, like seafood. Working on a specific niche can help you find your target audience easily. 

Lack of consistency kills many affiliate websites every year. So, choose something that you are interested in if you are the main content creator. Although it is better to have some ideas on the niche, you don’t have to be a total expert. It is as like Gary Vaynerchuk says – 

“Document, don’t create.” 

Consult with a seasoned expert if you are going to outsource the content. This will generate enough traffic, visitors, and affiliate sales.      

Find a suitable affiliate program

There are mainly three types of affiliate programs, 

  1. High-paying, low-volume

Niche-based affiliate programs with high payouts. For example, selling CRM software to limited users where you can earn up to $700 per month, which is almost 30% commission. The competition for such programs is high and it can be quite challenging if you are a starter.   

  1. Low-paying, high-volume

Product-based affiliate programs with low payout but mass appeal. For example, the Amazon affiliate program, where you can earn up to 10% commission on any sale. Now it may seem low, but there are tons of customers who will buy products. 

  1. High-paying, high-volume

Product-based affiliate programs with high payout and mass appeal. For example, affiliate programs for credit cards. Everyone requires credit cards and stays with the company for years. Moreover, the commission rate is also higher than other types of affiliate programs. For this reason, it attracts the skilled affiliate marketers around the world who have deep pockets. So, it’s definitely not for beginners.

Produce exclusive content

High-quality content is the key to boosting your sales and growing traffic. No matter which method you choose, content is the main element for driving traffic. When you have enough traffic for your website, you can also insert affiliate links into the content. 

After interviewing more than 100 famous peopleTim Ferris asked them the following question – 

“What purchase of $100 or less has most positively impacted your life in the last six months (or in recent memory)?”

He reviewed the answers as a blog post and inserted the affiliate links of the products. This strategy was liked by his fans and many people. This is how you should generate ideas when creating content for your affiliate website. Rather than producing content that is run-of-the-mill, you need to be creative about it.  

When you are reviewing products in your blogs, the best way is to purchase them and test them physically. Then, share your experience in those product review articles. This is how the great Wirecutter used to produce articles generating an estimated revenue of $10 million.        

Drive traffic to your affiliate site

Your high-end content is of no use if your site has no traffic. There are 3 types of strategies to drive traffic. Let’s get to know them – 

  1. SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

The main source of traffic is search engines. And Search Engine Optimization is the best practice for this. This is a must to get a high rank for your websites in search engines like BingYandexDuckDuckGo, and Google. As long as you rank higher for specific keywords, you will automatically get constant traffic. 

Successful SEO practice depends on –

  1. Finding who your target audience is and what they are looking for.
  2. Finding search engine optimized keywords that have high volume and low competition.
  3. Producing top-level content (i.e. blogs, product page, etc) based on those optimized keywords.
  4. Push the blog page and web pages higher in search engines by solving the technical stuff.
  5. Getting backlinks from authority websites. 

Here is a basic tutorial on SEO for beginners – 

  1. Paid Traffic

This is where you pay for your website’s traffic. Here, you are mainly paying for PPC (Pay Per Click) ads. The main advantage of paid traffic is it starts working as soon as you pay. Therefore, the chances of generating sales will be higher. It is like Stu Mclaren’s (Canadian Philanthropist) tweet –

However, there are some downsides. You have bid for ads and most of the time the advertiser loses money before they make it. It takes time and you have to be patient for the first few months.

  1. Email Marketing

Email marketing eventually generates traffic by increasing the conversion rate and customer engagement. This lets your audience know when there is new content on your website so that they can come back to your website and read it. 

As a result, you should have a reliable newsletter subscription platform (i.e. Mailchimp) included in your website. Insert newsletter subscription form in several areas of your website. Even Brian Dean (founder of Backlinko) has included a newsletter in the navigation bar – 

From email marketing, you can actually know which audience actually comes back to your website when he receives emails from you. They are your loyal customers.  

Email marketing ideas from backlinko

Encourage customers to click on your affiliate links

The most challenging part of affiliate marketing is to encourage people to click on the affiliate links. Not everyone will click on the affiliate links just because you have amazing content. You need to find suitable places to insert affiliate links. You can create standalone sections to review products where the links will be inserted either in a button or in an image or both. 

Or you can technically insert affiliate links into words like below –

Product 1 is good for your hair. You can use product 2 after you have washed your hair. 

Aside from that, you can take advantage of the callouts like tables, buttons, boxes to grab readers’ attention and make them more engaged. For instance, while “This is why I am broke” uses exclusive boxes to display affiliate products like below,

Affiliate product marketing

PCMag takes a different level of approach with a broad comparison table – 

Affiliate product comparison

Convert clicks to sales

In affiliate marketing, you need two conversions to make money.

The first conversion is to click on the product page. You are 100% in control of this action. Use tactics to increase your chances of getting clicks.

The second conversion is the product purchasing audience. In this type of conversion, the merchant controls the checkout and their conversion rate is out of your control.

You can use public income reports, ask questions directly, or use your intuition to find the most suitable merchants with the best affiliate programs.  

Affiliate Marketing Mistakes and Strategies to Avoid

Affiliate marketing is easy, but there are some downsides if you make some mistakes or take the wrong strategies like the below – 

  • Target affiliate program carefully – Don’t target products that are hard to sell. So, target your affiliate program very carefully. Research for the best affiliate marketing programs.
  • You are trying hard to sell – Don’t rely on direct sales, rather concentrate on the relationship with your customer. 
  • Poor quality content – Your articles should add value, they shouldn’t be filled with keyword-loaded content to dominate Google.
  • Don’t mislead your buyers – Your customer shouldn’t think that you are tempting them to buy a product for your greater benefit.
  • Check if your products are legit – Before promoting a product, make sure they are legit and carefully read the reviews online. This is crucial when you are promoting health products. 

How to Measure Affiliate Marketing Success

“How to get success in affiliate marketing?” There are some metrics to answer this question. There are dedicated affiliate program dashboards for Google, Facebook, Amazon, etc. You need to open the dashboard and track these metrics to measure success in affiliate marketing. Here is some key affiliate metrics – 

  • ROI (Return of Investment)
  • CTR (Click Through Rate)
  • Average conversion rates
  • Net monthly sales
  • Overall revenue
  • Spend on advertisements   

How to Choose the Right Affiliate Marketing Strategy in 2023

If you want to build something like the best affiliate marketing website, you should approach it with the right affiliate marketing strategy. You can pick the right affiliate marketing strategy from the following facts to increase your affiliate marketing success rate –

  • Make sure the strategy is a hit – The key to finding the right affiliate approach is to know your target audience. Analyze on which platform your target audience looks for answers. 
  • Which campaign is the best for a particular crowd – Conduct successful affiliate marketing campaigns providing your customers with gifts, vouchers, discounts, etc. 
  • Understand the right content for your audience – Deliver evergreen and informative content so that they are encouraged to click the newsletter subscription.
  • Understand your customer’s points – Try to understand what your customers want and deliver relevant content and product.
  • Use A/B testing – Compare the results, then use the data to refine your next affiliate strategy.  

Final Thoughts on Affiliate Marketing 

We did everything we could to show you how to achieve affiliate marketing success. But remember, we just showed the fundamentals, nothing new is reinvented in this article. The tricks and tips that we have presented for affiliate marketing will help you get on the right track. 

Just keep on practicing these steps, and don’t expect a drastic change in income or freedom to get rid of your 9-5 overnight. Affiliate marketing success will take time. Mainly, focus on generating your first income from a corresponding affiliate link. Set new goals and continue experimenting when your site grows. 

Editor Team


We are a group of WordPress experts (editorial team) from Themeim. All of these articles go through manual testing to reveal the ultimate outcome.