Start An Affiliate Marketing Business In 2020- A Step By Step Guide

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How to start an affiliate marketing business
Learning how to start an affiliate marketing business can be quite challenging.
Trust me; I know from experience as I learned how to build my affiliate marketing business back in 2013.
However, it wasn’t until recently I started to open my mind to the massive potential that affiliate marketing has to offer.
Therefore, I now have a much deeper understanding of this business model.
Furthermore, after researching this topic and my existing affiliate marketing knowledge, I’ve compiled enough info to write this post.
If you’ve come to this website searching for a step by step affiliate marketing guide, then you’ve come to the right place.
I’ll be laying out the exact steps I’ve taken to go from unemployed to self employed utilizing the affiliate marketing business model.
When I first started, I made many mistakes.
To be honest, I’ve made more mistakes than I’m willing to admit.
However, I feel this is a requirement if you want to have any success online.

Before Getting Started

Within the following post, I’ll be revealing everything and laying all my cards on the table (so to speak)
Also, I’ll show you how to avoid making the mistakes that I made when I first started here.
I’d advise you to grab a paper and pen (or use a notepad like me) and grab your favorite beverage.
I’ll be disclosing all of this and laying it down for you within this detailed post.
Many of you may have questions on this topic.
I hope to answer them for you within the context of this post.
However, if I fail to answer your questions, would you please do me a favor?
Leave them for me in the comment section below.
Do we have a deal?
I’ll get back to you ASAP with a detailed reply.
Sound good?
Let’s get started, shall we?

What Is An Affiliate Marketing Business?

how to start an affiliate marketing business
Affiliate marketing is a business model that originated back in the early to mid-’90s.
A popular myth suggests that Amazon was the first affiliate program to launch back in July 1996.
However, after some thorough research and lots of digging, I discovered that Shawn had another theory on this.
He has written a spectacular article on the history of affiliate marketing.
If affiliate marketing’s backstory intrigues you, then you may want to check it out to get a better understanding.
Since the mid-’90s, there are millions of affiliate programs you can join today in the year 2020.
Depending on the products and the affiliate merchant will determine the earning potential here.

How An Affiliate Marketing Business Works

In a nutshell, this process involves building a website around a topic of interest.
You’ll then recommend relevant products from other online merchants on your website.
How you decide to promote these products are up to you.
Whether you decide to write product reviews or list posts, this choice is up to you.
Once you decide what writing style you’re going with, it’s time to create some content.
To have the most success with this, you’ll need to be creative.
Furthermore, you’ll need to think outside the box and develop the right mindset.
Here are some great examples of successful affiliate marketing websites.
Also, here is an excellent analogy that puts this into perspective.

A Few Affiliate Marketing Business Examples

Let’s say you go out to eat at this new fancy restaurant that just opened in your city.
The next day, your neighbor Paul asks how your experience was.
If you had a great time, you’d likely recommend this restaurant to him and his family.
They go try it out, like it, and recommend it to their friends and family.
So on and so forth.
I think you get the idea, don’t you?
If you were an affiliate for this “new restaurant,” you would earn a commission on whatever food they ordered.
Could you imagine getting paid every time you recommended a product, service, or restaurant to your loved ones?
That’s what affiliate marketing is in a nutshell.
Are you guys following me so far?
Now that you have a basic understanding of what affiliate marketing is, let’s find out how to put these pieces together.
Sound like a plan?
Let’s continue moving forward.

How To Start An Affiliate Marketing Business

Start an affiliate marketing business
Before learning how to start an affiliate marketing business, there are a few things you’ll need.
I’ll be going over these things in a few minutes.
However, before listing these tools, I want to focus on the various ways to start an affiliate marketing business.

  • Micro-niche sites
  • Authority sites
  • CPA(Cost per action) Sites

There are many different types of websites you could build.
Therefore, I’m not limiting it to the ones listed above.
These are the ones in my top three recommendations.
Let’s take a closer look at the different types of sites you could build.
Which type of site do you want to build?

Three Types Of Affiliate Marketing Websites

Now that you’ve got a general idea of an affiliate marketing website’s functionality let’s explore the different types of sites at your fingertips.
Maybe you’re interested in building an authority site like mine (
As mentioned earlier, these are my favorite sites to build.
However, everyone has different tastes.
Let’s go over my top three affiliate marketing websites for 2020/2021. OK?

1)  Micro Niche Sites

Micro niche sites are an excellent way to close in on your audience and narrow it down.
Micro niche sites can also make money in as little as 3 to 4 months.
Since there isn’t much competition, your chances of ranking quickly have improved significantly.
Therefore you can make money with these for a short period.

2) Authority Websites

Authority websites are among my favorite sites to build.
Due to these sites’ income potential and longevity, I’d highly recommend them over a micro niche site.
Authority sites can take longer to develop and gain authority.
However, it’s well worth it in the long run.
It can take up to a year to make money with authority sites.
However, many factors play a part in this.
Not to mention that everyone learns at a different rate.
As I said earlier, these are the type of virtual places I like to create on the web.
I prefer these over the others as the longevity potential is pretty solid.
Furthermore, the income potential is unlimited.

3) CPA Sites ( Cost Per Action)

CPA sites are an excellent way to make money without selling anything.
Instead of writing product reviews and earning affiliate commissions, you’ll promote CPA offers.
You’ll get paid to drive leads to various survey panels, discussion boards, doctors’ offices, and fortune 500 companies.
You can earn anywhere from $1 per lead (Person) up to $500 or more, depending on the CPA offer you’re promoting.
These are just a few of the many affiliate marketing businesses you could start.
Now let’s talk about what you’ll need to put this into action.

Start An Affiliate Marketing Business: Tools Needed

Tools of the tradeBefore jumping in head first, there are a few tools you’ll need before you start your affiliate marketing journey.
Therefore, there are many pieces to the puzzle.
Furthermore, you’ll need to obtain each piece, connect the dots, and ultimately complete the puzzle with all the missing parts.
If you can comprehend everything you’ll need to do to become successful with affiliate marketing, then you’ve just won half the battle.
However, before any of this can happen, you’ll need the proper toolset.

A Website

Start an affiliate marketing business
Let’s face it, everyone and their momma has a website nowadays.
BTW it is 2020, right?
Who doesn’t have a website in this day and age?
Do you feel me?
Having a website is essential and a requirement for anyone to be successful online.
Also, most affiliate programs won’t accept you without a website.
How else are you going to send them targeted leads and new prospects without a website?
Before you think that you aren’t smart enough to build a website, think again.
Being that it’s 2020, creating a website is about as easy as tying your shoe.
Trust me; if you can click a few buttons and have basic computer knowledge, YOU CAN BUILD A WEBSITE.
A website is your #1 asset to this whole affiliate marketing stuff.
In the seven years I’ve been in the online space, I’ve made hundreds of thousands of dollars with many of my websites.
Check out my #1 recommended website building training platform here

The Right Hosting

Website hosting
Every site needs the right hosting for it to perform optimally.
Hosting is one of the critical components that you’ll need to run a successful affiliate marketing business from home.
What is hosting, and why does it play such a crucial part in your success as an affiliate marketer?
Think of it like this.
Hosting is where you’ll store the content you write on your website.
Furthermore, it also serves as a place to store images, files, and videos you upload to your website.
Here’s a great analogy that puts this into a better perspective for you guys to understand.
Hosting serves as a house for you to store everything contained on your site.
Make sense?
It also enables people like YOU and me to view various websites on the world wide web.
Just like you’re seeing this website right now as you read this post.
There are a plethora of web hosts out there that provide this service.
However, most hosting providers require that you own your domain name to host with them.
Consequently, they also provide this service for those who don’t have a website or domain name.

Where To Find The Best Hosting

There are many different types of hosting available, so you would need to pick the one that suits your needs.
Siteground is one of the best web hosts out there.
I have been using them for about a year and a half now with no complaints whatsoever.
They are also having a COVID-19 sale right now!!
You can get three months of starter hosting for a mere 99 cents.
Pretty sweet deal if you ask me, wouldn’t you guys agree?
If you’re looking for a great deal on hosting and struggling to get started, I’d highly recommend checking them out.
Learn more about Siteground hosting here.

Start An Affiliate Marketing Business: Thinking Of Ideas

Affiliate marketing ideas
Every business needs to originate from somewhere, right?
Therefore, you’ll need to put your thinking cap on and decide what type of business you want to create.
To do so, you’ll need to do some severe thinking so you can get the creative juices flowing.
The best way to do this is by going with a hobby or interest of yours.
There is no greater joy than taking an idea and learning how to turn it into a full-blown business.
Learning how to start an affiliate marketing business from scratch can be challenging.
Therefore if you have no prior experience or aren’t computer savvy, this can be particularly challenging for you.
However, with lots of patience, determination, hard work, you’ll learn a skill that can significantly change your life for the better.
You’ll learn how to turn this hobby into an affiliate marketing business.

Turning An Idea Into An Affiliate Marketing Business

What are some of your hobbies?
What do you enjoy doing in your leisure time?
Do you play video games or listen to music?
Guess what?
I make money playing video games.
Are you a gamer looking to turn this hobby into a career?
You may be a golfer or happen to be in a bowling league.
Perhaps you may be into gardening or playing outdoor sports.
You may just love to help people like me.
With various ways to start a business, you aren’t limited to ways to make money.
There are a million and one directions you could take your business.
Furthermore, this is going to require a great deal of effort on your part.
Once you’ve come up with a plan to base your business on, let’s find out how to put these ideas into action.
Sound good?

Creating Content

start an affiliate marketing business
Now that you know what to base your affiliate marketing business on, it’s time to create some content.
There is a significant amount of work that goes into this besides writing out the actual posts.
Writing content can be quite overwhelming (especially for newbies), as there are many pieces to this puzzle alone.
Here are just a few of the many content types you could start creating.

  • Product Reviews
  • List posts
  • Personal development type posts
  • Informative how-to articles

These are the top content ideas I came up with off the top of my head.
There are a plethora of additional types of content you could create if you got creative.
However, here are a few helpful tips to get you started in the right direction before getting started.

Helpful Content Creation Tips

  • Develop a writing style
  • Write engaging content that speaks to your audience.
  • Do thorough keyword research before starting.
  • Make proper use of H tags (Headers)
  • Use proper imagery
  • Have an excellent linking structure
  • Be helpful, not salesy
  • Provide the solution to their problem

I’ve personally created these types of content + much more on my website with great success.
Therefore, I know how powerful and beneficial this can be.
Creating content is my sole way of making money online.
Affiliate marketing is also responsible for nearly 90% of my monthly online income.
Also, don’t worry about how crappy your content is or if your writing sucks.
We all sucked at some point in time when we first started.
Myself included.
They say we are our worst critics.
Being your worst critic couldn’t be more accurate, especially in the world of affiliate marketing.
I would always second guess myself and think I would never write something people would want to read.
However, I’ve captured your attention in this blog post so far, haven’t I?
Practice makes perfect. The more you do something, no matter what it is, you’re bound to get better at it.
Have you ever seen anyone become successful with something as soon as they started?
That’s crazy and not possible.
Even when you start a new job, you’re going to suck at it until you learn the ropes and are familiar with the situation.

How To Get Traffic

traffic light
Now that you’ve written an extensive amount of content and targeted the proper keywords, you should have traffic starting to trickle in.
There are a variety of ways to drive traffic to your site, both free and paid.
Writing content that targets a specific keyword is my all-time favorite way to drive traffic to my website.
Although there are various things, you can do with the content you’ve just created to drive more traffic to your site.
They are as follows:

  • Sharing on social media
  • Create a You-Tube video (video version of your blog post)
  • Having other people share your content
  • Creating an email list

I mainly specialize in natural organic traffic from Google and other search engines using my SEO knowledge.
However, If you’re more of an advanced marketer, you may want to pursue the world of paid advertising.
Better known as PPC (Pay Per Click)
You’ll pay a specified amount each time someone clicks on your ad.
If they buy something as a result, then you made a conversion.
However, if you failed to get your message across, this will drive your ad cost up.
Furthermore, you’ll also need to have a budget as this can get quite expensive.
Especially if you’re a newbie)
Once you’ve developed a traffic strategy, it’s time to get to work.
Traffic is the lifeblood of your business.
Without it, you’ll fail to make your first dollar online.
Therefore this should be your #1 priority when learning how to start an affiliate marketing business.

Finding Affiliate Programs

How to start an affiliate marketing business
Affiliate programs are a massive piece of the affiliate marketing puzzle I mentioned earlier.
You may have the most magnificent website in the world, a million-dollar idea, and a good understanding of how this business works.
However, without affiliate programs, your earning potential is nearly non-existent.
Finding affiliate programs are the key to building a profitable affiliate marketing business.
While there are other ways to make money with a website, affiliate marketing is among the best out there.
Joining affiliate programs are free.
Furthermore, you’ll gain access to your personalized affiliate link, banner images, and any other tools to promote their products/ services successfully upon approval.
Most online retailers place their affiliate program at the bottom of their website.
You can also search for them within Google by typing your idea+ affiliate program.
Replace the “Your idea+ affiliate program with what you’re searching for to find it.
Finding affiliate programs that pay enough to make this worth your time can be challenging.
Therefore, you must dig deep and research this heavily before signing up for any affiliate program.
For example, I joined the Siteground affiliate program.
It blew me away that they pay you MORE than the product/ service costs.
New customers can get the first 12 months of hosting for only $70.
However, after you’ve made ten sales, your commissions increase to $100 per sale.
Pretty crazy, right?
I wish more affiliate programs offered this type of commission.
Do you feel me?

Affiliate Marketing Income Potential

start an affiliate marketing business
Once you have a decent flow of visitors (traffic) daily, you can generate revenue as a result.
I know people always like proof that something works before they try their luck with it.
I was the same way when I first started, so I can relate to how you must feel about now.
Therefore, I’m going to be as transparent as possible.
I’ll show you a few results I’ve had with a couple of affiliate programs I’ve joined. I’ll also share some insights on the money I’ve made from a few new affiliate programs I recently joined.
This way, you’ll see that affiliate marketing is a REAL business.
Additionally, you’ll see what is possible if you’re willing to take the time to learn a new skill.
However, this skill won’t do you any good unless you¬†Implement what you learned and applied it to your website.
Anyway, here are a few screenshots of what I earned from a few affiliate programs I’ve joined recently.
Check them out below.

My Personal Affiliate Marketing Experience

Digistore payments
Start an affiliate marketing business online
As you can see in the screenshot above, I’ve earned nearly $2300. Not too bad if you ask me.
Wouldn’t you agree?
Also, these commissions are coming in from a product that I’m not heavily promoting.
Yes, I do recommend it, but that’s about it.
Furthermore, I earned these commissions for over five weeks.
For some people, this may seem like a lot.
However, as a marketer, you must continuously strive to do better.
As I said earlier, the sky is the limit as far as your income potential.
If you aren’t afraid to learn a new skill and expand your knowledge, you could do quite well here.

Info Needed To Start An Affiliate Marketing Business

If you’ve attempted to make money online at any point, chances are you’ve come across a guru that claims he can make you an overnight millionaire.
Trust me; I feel your pain as I have fallen for many online marketing scams in my time.
Therefore, I know how deceitful these gurus can be.
Furthermore, I also know their marketing tactics are persuasive.
However, contrary to what these idiots tell you, learning how to start an affiliate marketing business is hard work.
There is NO need for me to sugarcoat it for you as I’m here to provide you with genuinely helpful information.
You won’t make money tomorrow, next week, or even next month.
Reason being cause this is a business that you’re building from scratch.
You aren’t going to see results from it right away.
You’ll need to do extensive research, know how to put things in your own words, and genuinely engage with your audience.
Affiliate marketing is a skill that could take years to learn.
However, once you’ve wrapped your head around the massive opportunity available here, the earning potential is limitless.
If you’re willing to learn a new skill that could potentially change your life forever (If you put in the hard work), affiliate marketing could be one of the best decisions of your life.

The Best Place To Start An Affiliate Marketing Business

start an affiliate marketing business
There are hundreds of places in the online space that claim to offer affiliate marketing training.
However, can you trust them with your hard earned money?
I’ve personally been involved with affiliate and online marketing for nearly 8 years now.
Therefore, I have joined hundreds of programs that claim to show you how to make money with affiliate marketing.
The place that has shown me how to put the puzzle pieces together and make sense of all this is Wealthy Affiliate.
I’ve been earning a full time living from the comfort of my home since early 2013.
If you’re looking for the best affiliate marketing training in the online space, id highly recommend, Wealthy Affiliate.
Affiliate marketing can be confusing and very overwhelming.
However, if you have someone to help you out and provide you with the right training, it wouldn’t be.
Learn more about Wealthy Affiliate here

Start An Affiliate Marketing Business Closing Thoughts

Learning how to start an affiliate marketing business could be the missing link that could forever change your life.
When I discovered this business model back in 2013, my life was an absolute disaster.
As I look back on my journey over the past seven years, I’ve learned a lot.
However, I haven’t even scratched the surface of the potential available in the online world.
As you continue to build your affiliate marketing business, you’ll learn many ways to grow.
I hope this detailed post has provided you with valuable information.
Furthermore, I hope this post has answered every question you may have had about affiliate marketing.
If not, then please leave your questions for me in the comments section below.
Also, I’m welcome to hearing your thoughts on affiliate marketing.
Have you ever tried this before?
How did it go?
Did you make any money?
Don’t be shy!!
Speak up.
Anyway, I’ll get back to you with a detailed reply ASAP.
Until Next Time
~Your Friend, Scott~

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