Best Affiliate Marketing Platforms (2018)

Affiliate marketing is a very large industry and has become a key source of online income for many thousands of professional bloggers. With more and more online businesses becoming involved in affiliate marketing, more opportunities have arisen for bloggers, like you and I, to make money with their blog.

With a wide variety of businesses who work direct with affiliates, most affiliate marketers will use an affiliate marketing network to search for offers for their blogs. Though these affiliate platforms will take a small cut of any fees generated, they do serve a valuable purpose in the affiliate marketing climate

  1. Aggregating offers from different vendors
  2. Create a directory or search engine for affiliate marketers to find offers
  3. Handle the administrative duties of running an affiliate network

In this post I will go through some of the most popular affiliate marketing platforms.

Best Affiliate Networks

Shareasale  

ShareASale is one of the largest affiliate networks. The Shareasale platform has about 4,000 merchants listed, of which over one thousand of them are exclusive to them. ShareASale publishes a large amount of data on each of the offers they are running, these include:

  • Earnings per Click
  • Reversal Rates
  • Average Sale Amount
  • Average Commission

While these figures aren’t guarantees of payouts you can expect, they’re certainly very helpful in assessing a campaign.

The advantages of ShareASale include:

  • Large Partner Network. The 4,000+ merchants include more than 1,000 that are exclusive.
  • Easy to Compare Offers. When trying to choose from the various offers available, ShareASale make it very easy to evaluate the best ones based on the metrics.
  • Quick Payment Cycle. ShareASale pay out on the 20th of every month, assuming your account balance is more than $50.

Disadvantages of Shareasale:

  • None to speak of

Flexoffers

Flexoffers is another huge affiliate marketing network. They pay you (the affiliate) a lot faster than others in the industry. It has more than 10 years of experience in the field. While they do not offer anything that is neither groundbreaking nor revolutionary, they do provide a solid array of tools and features that will surely aid you in your campaigns. In addition to the fast payouts, Flexoffers lets you choose from thousands of affiliate programs to promote, offers various content delivery formats, and more.

FlexOffers connects bloggers, content creators and other types of publishers with small, medium and large budget advertisers & brands.

They have tens of thousands of different affiliate programs to choose from. They have divided these affiliate programs into dozens of broad and hundreds of sub-categories, which makes the publisher’s life easier to find exactly what would fit into their niche.

Flexoffers also has their own affiliate program which is a licence to print money. If you refer someone to FlexOffers and they earn commission, you also earn commission. You can earn as much as 50% of any earnings generated by any affiliates referred by you. How cool is that!!!

The advantages of FlexOffers include:

  • Revenue Share. As I just mentions, if you refer someone to FlexOffers and they generate income, you get a cut of what they earn.
  • Dedicated Affiliate Manager. A lot of networks leave you to your own devices. Not FlexOffers. You get your own Affiliate Manager to help you get the most out of your affiliate marketing efforts.
  • Vast Amounts Of Affiliate Programs. Well over 15k affiliate programs to choose from and apply for.

Disadvantages of Shareasale:

  • Paypal the only payment option for those who are based internationally ( Outside US )

MaxBounty

A relative newcomer to the affiliate space, MaxBounty was founded in 2004 in Ottawa, Canada. MaxBounty claims to be the only affiliate network built specifically for affiliates. MaxBounty is exclusively a CPA (Cost Per Action/Acquisition) company that doesn’t deal with ad banners or the like, just customer links that the publisher (blogger) chooses where to place on their website.

Niche Information
MaxBounty works in the business niche and claims to have more than 1,500 active campaigns.

Product Types
MaxBounty works exclusively with digital products, usually about giving one’s email or signing up for a newsletter. MaxBounty has CPA, Pay-per-call, and CPL campaigns that you can choose from. MaxBounty is involved in a large number of verticals, including market research, real estate, social games, finance, dating, and diet, but is primarily designed for marketers seeking to acquire new leads.

Average Commission Rate
The commission rate depends on the type of campaign. A glance at their website shows everything from $2.50 to $85 per CPA while other campaigns pay out a given percentage of a sale. The referral commission is five percent.

Cookie Duration
MaxBounty doesn’t use cookies in order to track CPAs. The way MaxBounty works is the affiliate sends a prospect to a designated landing page using an affiliate-specific link.

Who Is it for?
MaxBounty is attempting to get ahead of the pack by enforcing very strict anti-spam rules, sometimes onerously so. MaxBounty only works with digital products, not sales of physical items. MaxBounty does allow CPA action (and thus earning) via mobile devices.

As such, MaxBounty is probably best for mid-level to top-level internet marketers who are confident in managing and sending traffic. If you’re just starting out in the affiliate game, MaxBounty is probably not going to earn you much money.

MaxBounty is pretty easy to get around, and the dashboard is great as it clearly lists the best offers for your niche.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • Very responsive customer service.
  • $1,000 bonus for affiliates who earn $1,000 or more in the first three months.
  • Weekly payments ($50 minimum) via check, Paypal, Intercash, eCheck, ACH (direct deposit), bank wire, or Bitcoin.
  • Has worked with some high-profile brands.
  • Simple to use dashboard with useful ability to sort for high-paying offers.

Cons: 

  • A large number of affiliates have reported a negative experience.
  • Accounts are often terminated with little or no explanation.
  • Can take a long time to get approved, which includes a voice call.

Tradedoubler

Tradedoubler was founded in 1999 by two young Swedish entrepreneurs. They have offices in the UK and multiple countries throughout Europe, including Sweden, Germany, France, Poland and Spain. Their focus has always been to provide smarter results for both clients and affiliates through technology. In 18 years, they’ve amassed an army of 180,000 active publishers, connecting them to over 2,000 merchants in Europe and the UK. Many of these merchants are household names.

CJ Affiliate

CJ Affiliate is considered to be the biggest affiliate platforms online; if you have worked in the affiliate marketing space for any amount of time, you’ve probably come across them.

Nearly every major retailer have their affiliate programs on CJ Affiliate (formerly Commission Junction), which makes them as close to a one stop shop as you can get in the affiliate marketing business. Most retailers have multiple ad sizes available for affiliates, which gives you better control of the offers you show on your blog.

With such a wide array of advertisers on the CJ Affiliate platform it makes it relatively easy to compare and segment different offers. Finding the affiliate tracking code to place on your blog is also straightforward; once you’re approved to promote an offer, you can be running lots of different offers on your site in just a few short hours.

To summarise, the advantages of the network are:

  • Large Partner Network. CJ Affiliate has over three thousand advertising partners, many have lots of creative sizes and various affiliate link options.
  • Reliable Payments. They offer a net-20 payment term which means that you’ll get your commission paid out in a timely manner each month.
  • Powerful Reporting Options. The reporting suite from CJ Affiliate is pretty impressive, which is a big advantage for marketers who plan to spend a their time optimizing their sales performance.

Disadvantages of the network include:

  • Steep Learning Curve. While the reporting capabilities are great, they’re also quite difficult for beginners to get to grips with. You’ll need to spend time in the dashboard before you’re comfortable navigating the reporting suite and can then start to take full advantage of the tools on offer.
  • Limited Customer Support. Due to the large number of affiliates and merchants, it’s understandable that customer support is quite limited. But only having a contact form as the main method to get in touch with the support department can be restrictive.

Rakuten

Rakuten LinkShare is considered to be one of the oldest affiliate partner networks, it is now a fair amount smaller than some of the bigger players in the affiliate industry. There are a few slick features of Rakuten LinkShare that differentiate this platform from the rest.

For example, they have the ability to rotate through the various banners automatically for a product which is a huge advantage when trying to optimize your offers. Instead of having to manually select which ad you want to run on your blog, LinkShare lets multiple versions rotate with only one small piece of code.

LinkShare also allows for more flexible “deep linking” to individual merchant landing pages, this allows for increased customization of the types of campaigns you can run.

The advantages of LinkShare are:

  • Ad Rotation. This may seem like a pretty minor feature, but it can make a significant difference when it comes to optimizing your ads.
  • Deep Linking Options. LinkShare lets you choose the page you want to send your traffic to on their site, giving you more flexibility for promoting different affiliate offers.

Disadvantages include:

  • A Much Smaller Network. LinkShare have around 1,000 partners – this is considerably fewer than the bigger networks like CJ Affiliate or ShareASale.
  • Unpredictable Payments to Affiliates. Rakuten LinkShare only pay out to their affiliates once the commissions are collected from their partners.

Affiliate Window – (AWIN)

Previously known as Affiliate Window but now officially referred to as “AWIN” after acquiring Zanox a few years ago, this network claims to work with over 13,000 active advertisers and 100,000 publishers (affiliates). Founded in Germany, AWIN’s merchants primarily hail from Europe (especially Great Britain) although the U.S. network is growing rapidly. AWIN is currently active in 11 countries.

Established in 2000, this company has since grown into one of the most well regarded affiliate networks in the UK, as well as the world. Currently, it boasts of over 1,600 brands across 77 sectors in 11 territories worldwide.

They also provide a simple, user friendly dashboard, as well as an array of useful tools that can definitely help you boost your affiliate marketing campaigns.

You can find a complete list of AWIN’s advertisers here, including some big names like Etsy.

Niche Information
AWIN is a very comprehensive affiliate network and works in all verticals. That being said, it is most heavily oriented towards financial, retail shopping (fashion), sports, beauty, home and garden, and travel products.

Product Types
AWIN works with both digital and physical products, including from some very big name merchants like Hyatt, Etsy, AliExpress, and HP (Hewlett-Packard).

Average Commission Rate
Everything depends on the campaign and the merchant/advertiser. Price information is only disclosed on the dashboard after the application to join AWIN is approved. AWIN offers aren’t tracked by Affscanner and OfferVault, so it’s really hard to gauge commission rates and earning potentials without being an approved publisher.

Cookie Duration
Cookie duration is set by the advertiser.

Who Is it for?
AWIN is probably best for experienced affiliates who can hit the ground running without a lot of guidance or feedback from the network. There is a $5 fee charged to apply to become an affiliate, but if you’re approved, the $5 will be added to your account. If your application is denied, however, you will lose the $5 fee. AWIN operates globally, but it is most heavily concentrated on British and EU merchants.

AWIN has a lot of powerful tools, including an “Opportunity Marketplace” where you can pitch merchants on unique one-off deals (like sponsored posts). AWIN also has its own WordPress plugin that makes it really easy to convert a link into your affiliate-specific link. There’s also a Google Chrome extension as well.

AWIN includes Etsy as one of its merchants, making AWIN an excellent choice for bloggers who want to promote Etsy products.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros of Awin:

  • Pays out twice per month ($20 minimum).
  • Real-time reports.
  • Publishers/advertisers are heavily vetted.
  • Very easy to use dashboard and lots of plugins available.
  • 900 staff in 15 offices around the globe.

Cons of Awin:

  • Sign-up requires paying $5 in advance.
  • Accounts that do not get approved do not have $5 fee returned.
  • Each program requires a separate application (and approval).
  • No video explainers or demos.
  • No FAQ/knowledge base section and sometimes slow email/online support.
  • Bit of a learning curve even for affiliates familiar with other networks.

Viglink

VigLink works a bit differently than other affiliate programs in that it is specifically designed for bloggers. Instead of affiliates picking and choosing which merchants to work with, VigLink uses dynamic links that automatically change to work with merchants that VigLink has determined are offering the highest conversation rates and/or commissions at any given moment.

In effect, VigLink works as the middleman between a publisher (blogger) and merchants by scanning the publisher’s content and automatically creating links to publishers that are chosen “in real time” based on their payout/conversation rates. This makes VigLink a very hands-off affiliate program for publishers who prefer to focus on content instead of managing their affiliate links.

Niche Information
VigLinks works with all types of advertisers/merchants but does categorize them by “trends” or what’s popular. It’s important to note that this information about trends comes from third-party sites, not VigLink itself.

Product Types
VigLink is primarily about selling physical products but also does work with some digital-only products and services.

Average Commission Rate
VigLink allows affiliates to filter between CPC, CPA, or both CPA and CPA offers. The commission rates are set by the merchant, not VigLink.

Cookie Duration
It depends on the merchant and/or offer.

Who Is it for?
VigLink is an intermediary platform, so it can serve as a backdoor for affiliates who have previously been banned/suspended from working with other affiliate programs like Amazon. And while you can choose specific merchants or offers, VigLink can be set up to work automatically by scanning your published content and dynamically generating affiliate links, making it a great choice for established content producers who are looking for a simpler way to generate revenue via an affiliate program.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros of VigLink: 

  • Works well across websites/social media/apps.
  • One-page dashboard is very simple to use yet powerful.
  • Great for bloggers who want a more hands-off affiliate program.
  • A good option for people banned from Amazon or other affiliate programs.
  • Can be set to dynamically update links to maximize your income.

Cons of VigLink: 

  • You have to be approved by each merchant separately.
  • The “automatic creation of links” needs to be fine tuned (esp. the WordPress plugin) in order to maximize earning potential.
  • Huge disparaties in payouts between merchants/offers.
  • Only pays out once a month.
  • VigLink will take a healthy slice of your commissions/income.

JVZoo

JVZoo was founded in 2011 and has since rocketed to near the top as one of the most popular affiliate programs out there. JVZoo is unusual in that there are no upfront costs for either publishers or merchants (advertisers). JVZoo’s income is exclusively from charging fees (to both the merchant and the affiliate) after a sale has been made. It is also unusual in that it pays commissions “instantly” via PayPal rather than once a week/fortnight/month like other affiliate programs.

Niche Information
JVZoo works exclusively with digital products, primarily e-commerce, online courses, and internet marketing offers. Because there are no limits placed on the number of links, buy buttons, or calls to action on a website, JVZoo can sometimes be somewhat low quality both in terms of offers as well as products. Nonetheless, it has proven itself to be a fierce competitor to companies like ClickBank.

Product Types
JVZoo is primarily about selling online courses or getting people to hand over their information to marketing companies, but it has carved out a leadership role in advertising product launches, which occur every single day.

Average Commission Rate
Commission rates vary based on product/merchant, but many of them offer 50 percent or higher returns.

Cookie Duration
Unlimited/lifetime cookies.

Who Is it for?
JVZoo lets you both host and create landing pages on their own website, so it’s far better suited for professional marketers who want to flood the internet with offers, many of them for courses to make money. You don’t need your own website to participate in JVZoo, but you will need to know how to drive traffic to a landing or squeeze page in order to profit from being a JVZoo affiliate.

JVZoo’s strength is that it allows experienced marketers to gain access to product launches and a huge range of online courses while setting up sales funnels and customized landing pages. It’s definitely not for someone who wants to monetize a blog or earn money by having users click through and buy physical products. If you’ve carved out a strong presence online in the marketing space, JVZoo might be a perfect fit.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros of JVzoo:

  • Free to join and you can (later) qualify for instant payouts (Paypal).
  • Ideal for marketing new product launches.
  • You don’t need your own website.
  • You can (sometimes) recruit second-tier affiliates using the lifetime/unlimited cookies.
  • Huge range of products and categories with detailed statistics on each program/merchant.

Cons of JVZoo: 

  • Lots of videos and documentation available, but you have to pay to access it (a one-time fee).
  • Many of the products are quite low quality, if not actual “spam.”
  • You have to sell 50 products or more to get instant Paypal payouts.
  • User dashboard is a bit clunky and can sometimes misfire.
  • Many merchant/seller ads are hyperbolic and misleading.

ClickBank

ClickBank is the “OG” of affiliate marketing programs and has been around since the earliest days of the internet. After suffering from low-quality products that verged on spam back in 2012, ClickBank (or “CB” to those in the industry) has revamped its review process and created a much better dashboard.

There’s a good reason why ClickBank is still a strong contender, however it does tend to focus more on digital products which may be of questionable quality. Yes, the review process is more professional these days, but it’s still primarily focused on selling digital products, especially “how to make money” courses and the like. That being said, there are some genuinely high-quality products on offer, and few affiliate programs are bigger than ClickBank, especially in selling (primarily digital) books.

Niche Information
ClickBank previously focused primarily on digital products, particularly marketing type courses, but has now vastly expanded its offering to include both digital and physical goods.

Product Types
ClickBank’s focus tends to be more on niche e-books, online courses, and e-courses, although they have expanded into some physical goods as well.

Average Commission Rate
Up to 75%.

Cookie Duration
Cookie duration depends on the product, but none are unlimited/lifetime.

Who Is it for?
ClickBank allows you to join for free, and the approval process is virtually automatic, so it’s a great choice for people entering the affiliated game for the first time. ClickBank has a ton of information, including FAQs, walk-throughs, and videos available, so the barrier to entry is quite low. There’s also a (paid) program called ClickBank University with courses and assistance from experienced marketers.

There’s also a second-tier program called the “joint venture program” that allows you to collaborate with ClickBank partners, a type of second-tier affiliate program. There’s an approval process for this, but the commissions are higher. ClickBank is superbly positioned for publishers (bloggers) working in smaller niches.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • Weekly payouts with many different payout options.
  • The joint venture program allows for even higher earnings.
  • One of the biggest and most robust affiliate programs out there.
  • ClickBank enforces a 60-day, no questions asked money back guarantee on ALL products.
  • Instant approval process.

Cons:

  • Refund policy improves conversion rates but can eat into your income.
  • Strong competition from other affiliates selling the same products.
  • Some digital products being sold are very low quality.
  • Initial payments are made by check only – only after a minimum number of sales can you get payouts via wire transfer or PayPal.
  • Limited range of physical products.

Target Affiliates

Similar to Amazon, Target’s affiliate program is designed to help bloggers and publishers earn income from selling Target (the brick-and-mortar retailer) products. Since most Americans are familiar with and trust Target, the affiliate program can be quite lucrative for well-positioned content creators.

Niche Information
This program exclusively works with physical products sold by Target stores.

Product Types
Anything sold on Target’s website.

Average Commission Rate
Commissions are fairly low and max out at eight percent.

Cookie Duration
Cookies expire after seven days.

Who Is it for?
As Target is the second-largest general retailer in the United States, their affiliate program is primarily for American bloggers or publishers who can route visitors to relevant products. Overall, the program works much like Amazon’s does in that publishers (bloggers) get a small commission on sales, but Target’s gigantic product base (over one million items) and high brand recognition make their affiliate program a great option for influencers.

Earning income via Target affiliates, however, requires a bit of work. Cookies expire in just seven days, and commissions can be as low as just one percent, so you’ll need to be operating a high-traffic website in order to make serious cash with this program. But with Target’s much-beloved brand reputation and vast catalog, relevant product links can be a big earner for established influencers.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • Highly trusted brand.
  • Enormous catalog of products (over one million)
  • Great alternative to Amazon’s affiliate program.
  • Established influencers can make a sizeable amount of money.
  • You’ll get paid from ANY purchase made on Target (sent from your link), not just the specified product.

Cons:

  • Commission rates are quite low, especially for low-volume sellers.
  • Oddly, some categories of produts have no commission at all.
  • Conversion rates are lower than Amazon.
  • Only suitable for websites with a primarily American audience
  • Only four main categories have comparable or higher commission rates than Amazon.

Skim Links

SkimLinks works very similarly to VigLinks in that it is designed for bloggers who don’t want to do a lot of hands-on work to participate in an affiliate program. SkimLinks also works much like VigLinks in that it uses a plugin or script to create dynamic links in your content to send visitors to higher paying offers from merchants. SkimLinks claims to work with over 24,000 merchants/advertisers.

One big difference between SkimLinks and VigLinks, however, is that once you’re approved by the company, you can choose to work with any merchant or program on its platform. SkimLinks has also published a white paper discussing its partnership with Buzzfeed, giving SkimLinks a lot of credibility. SkimLinks also has a higher tier of vetted merchants called “Preferred Partner” and “VIP” that both pay higher commissions than standard merchants.

Niche Information
SkimLinks works with a wide range of products, but is more heavily skewed towards physical items.

Product Types
SkimLinks works with both physical and digital products. It does seem to be more heavily focused on physical products, however, including fashion (apparel) from big-name brands and lots of Amazon, Target, and eBay products.

Average Commission Rate
Commission rates vary by merchant, but the best commissions (up to 100 percent) are offered by the 400+ members of their Preferred Partner and VIP programs.

Cookie Duration
Duration depends on the merchant.

Who Is it for?
SkimLinks is primarily for established content producers (bloggers) who want to monetize their content. With a powerful WordPress plugin and scripts for just about any website type, setting up SkimLinks is very easy. And because you have access to all offers on their platform after you’re approved, SkimLinks is very well designed for affiliates who don’t want to spend a lot of time fiddling around with settings and other fine-tuning.

SkimLinks is probably best for bloggers who want to write content around the affiliate link rather than add affiliate links to existing products. SkimLinks offers a lot of tools to compare commission rates and offers in order to customize your content to optimize your income. Once nice aspect of SkimLinks is that it offers lots of products for non-US creators, including popular UK brands like John Lewis and Tesco.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • Great customer service.
  • Email alerts for merchants you’ve “favorited”.
  • Very simple integration into your existing website.
  • Powerful and easy to use interface.
  • Amazon and Ebay links are auto targeted to the right region.

Cons: 

  • Skimlinks is free to join/use, but they will take 25 percent of all commissions.
  • Only pays out once a month.
  • Somewhat limited number of merchants/advertisers.
  • Some websites load more slowly after adding SkimLinks code.

Warrior Plus

Warrior Plus’s website and interface look like something from an earlier era, but Warrior Plus is a strong contender in advertising online courses and “make money” marketing programs. Where Warrior Plus shines is its instant payments (via PayPal) and paying out for all products in the sales funnel.

Because vetting the products (including refund rates) requires a lot of time and effort, Warrior Plus is best positioned for experienced marketers who are looking to earn commissions on a large range of programs.

Niche Information
Warrior Plus (or Warrior + as its known in some circles) is exclusively dedicated to internet marketing.

Product Types
The only products available for sale via Warrior Plus are digital ones, including one-time offers and “free” courses given in exchange for contact information. The majority of Warrior Plus products are courses on how to make money (known as MMO/BizOpp in the industry).

Average Commission Rate
Commission rates vary wildly depending on the product.

Cookie Duration
Cookie durations vary by product.

Who Is it for?

Warrior Plus is ideal for experienced internet marketers who want to earn commissions on (other) internet marketing offers. Warrior Plus’s clunky interface and high volume of (often) low-quality products make their program best suited for experienced affiliates who have sophisticated methods of driving traffic to specified links.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros:

  • Easy and free approval process.
  • Large number of (digital) products on offer.
  • Very transparent operation and high payouts/commissions for some products.
  • Useful metrics on vendors.
  • Instant Paypal payouts or payouts via Stripe.

Cons:

  • Requires approval from each vendor, which can be time-consuming.
  • Sells a large number of low-quality products.
  • Refunds can eat into your income.
  • You have to make five sales before getting your first payout
  • Lack of transparency/info about some products.

Peerfly

Peerfly is a CPA network with a comprehensive list of both digital and physical products. Peerfly stands out from its competitors because it offers a second-tier affiliate program that will earn you five percent of everything your second-tier affiliates sell in their first year.

Although it has a dynamic and well-designed website, PeerFly has a limited range of offers at any given time (around 8,000). On the upside, it does offer good commission/payout rates, lots of FAQs and educational information, and regular contests and reward programs that can substantially increase your bottom line. Based on online customer reviews, Peerfly enjoys a very high reputation amongst participating affiliates.

Niche Information
There are a wide variety of products available on PeerFly, but the majority of them tend to be digital. That being said, PeerFly has landed some big customers, including Target, CBS, and Fiverr.

Product Types
Primarily digital but also a lot of physical products.

Average Commission Rate
Depends on the merchant.

Cookie Duration
Depends on the product.

Who Is it for?

PeerFly is for legitimate affiliates who don’t mind going through the rigorous application process. PeerFly spent a lot of time setting up their dashboard and website to make it super intuitive and easy to use, so once you’re “in,” things work very smoothly.

PeerFly only has a limited number of products at the moment, but they have tremendous momentum and are growing by leaps and bounds. Their payout rates aren’t spectacular, but everything is upfront and transparent, and affiliate satisfaction is very high. PeerFly is perfect for authentic marketers who want to offer high-quality products to their visitors as opposed to “get rich quick” schemes and opaque offers.

PeerFly’s second-tier affiliate program means that established influencers can earn quite a lot.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • Very high satisfaction amongst affiliates.
  • Great UX/UI.
  • Stringent vetting ensures little to no spam or scammy products.
  • Super easy set-up and powerful dashboard.
  • Payouts every 7/15/30 days via PayPal, Amazon gift cards, checks, Payoneer, Bitcoin, or bank wire transfer.

Cons:

  • Minimum payout is $50.
  • Only has 15 people on staff.
  • Limited number of products.
  • Rigorous application process.
  • Customer service can be quite slow and there is a limited amount of FAQ/educational info on their website.

LinkConnector

LinkConnector has struggled to stand out from the pack but nonetheless has managed to sign some exclusive deals with big name brands, including Writer’s Digest, the Disney Store, Ironman, Hats.com, and Everly. Their strictly controlled screening process for both merchants/advertisers and affiliates/publishers means that you can always rely on the quality of products on offer.

That being said, LinkConnector’s platform looks and feels outdated and is rather clumsily designed. Their dashboard also makes it difficult to find “hot” products or compare conversion rates, leaving affiliates somewhat in the dark about which products to choose. Ironically, despite their low-quality website, they offer some of the best customer service in the affiliate space.

Niche Information
LinkConnector works with a broad range of products, offered as CPA (click per action), CPS (clicks per second), PPC (pay per call), and PPL (pay per lead).

Product Types
LinkConnector’s products are about evenly split between digital products and physical products. Most of the digital products are e-commerce rather than being e-books or online courses.

Average Commission Rate
Commission rates depend on the seller.

Cookie Duration
Cookie durations are dependent on the vendor.

Who Is it for?
LinkConnector is something of a mixed bag, so it’s probably best for experienced affiliates who have become disillusioned with other networks and are looking to expand. LinkConnector’s bizarre mix of high-quality products and a low-quality dashboard make it hard to truly assess its viability, but their exclusive deals with some vendors can make it a true home run for publishers working in certain niches.

LinkConnector imposes a very rigorous and lengthy screening process, so you’ll need to prove that you have a high-quality website and established audience before being accepted. Despite its somewhat schizophrenic approach, LinkConnector does have some very happy long-term affiliates. And their “naked links” allow for direct connection to the merchant website without having to be rerouted via LinkConnector, which will give your website an SEO boost.

LinkConnector is probably best for established influencers who work in fashion, apparel, and home niches OR for those who can send traffic to CPA sites for actions like phone calls or completing contact information forms.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • Exclusive access to some big-name brands.
  • Very high quality products that are heavily vetted.
  • Good customer service.
  • Uses private coupon codes that prevent coupon “hijacking.”
  • Offers “naked links” that don’t require rerouting through LinkConnector’s website, which is a huge SEO boost.

Cons: 

  • Poorly designed website and dashboard.
  • Highly rigorous screening process (up to 60 percent of applicants are rejected).
  • The merchant can control where the links are displayed.
  • Limited range of physical products.
  • Heavily tilted towards merchants over affiliates.

AvanGate ( 2Checkout )

AvanGate is now officially known as 2Checkout, which has caused a lot of confusion for many merchants. Even more confusing, the original Avangate name now refers to a payment processor while 2Checkout is the affiliate program, but 2Checkout uses AvanGate to process all of its payouts, making 2Checkout a subsidiary of Avangate.

2Checkout, the affiliate program, is exclusively focused on selling software and other digital goods as opposed to sign-ups, form completions, or online courses. 2Checkout sells over 22,000 different software products from a wide number of big-name companies, including Kaspersky, Hewlett-Packard, and BitDefender.

Niche Information
2Checkout works exclusively in digital products, primarily software, e-commerce, and SaaS.

Product Types
2Checkout is exclusively involved in software, digital products, and SaaS (software as a service) solutions.

Average Commission Rate
Commission rates vary by product but range between 25-80 percent.

Cookie Duration
Cookies expire after 120 days.

Who Is it for?
Because 2Checkout exclusively sells software and digital products, it is best suited for established influencers whose target audience is interested in buying products in this niche. But while you won’t find any physical products for sale, 2Checkout is probably the market leader in selling software of every type, including very specific use case items (like software that can convert Microsoft Word documents to PDF, for instance).

Unfortunately, the 2Checkout dashboard is a bit limited in scope, making it difficult to get any metrics on conversion rates or even sorting by commission payouts. The workaround is to go to the Avangate store, which does list their best-selling products, and then search for these on the affiliate dashboard. That being said, 2Checkout does offer products from more than 4,000 different vendors, making it the leading affiliate network for software and digital products.

Recent corporate changes and folding 2Checkout into a larger company that is involved in payment processing and e-commerce means that the affiliate program can sometimes feel somewhat neglected. But the ability to generate custom coupon codes and the comprehensive knowledge base make 2Checkout a good option for experienced affiliates with an established user base. But if you’re just entering the affiliate field for the first time, 2Checkout might not be where you want to start.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • An industry leader in affiliate sales for software and SaaS products.
  • Lengthy cookie duration (120 days).
  • Can create unique coupons.
  • Very generous commission rates.
  • Payout via PayPal, direct deposit, or via a branded (Avangate) MasterCard.

Cons: 

  • Minimum $100 payout.
  • Dashboard has limited search/sorting options.
  • Reports are thin on useful details.
  • Very large number of dissatisifed customers, many of which are upset about unexpected or unauthorized charges.
  • Poor customer service at times.

Web Hosting Affiliate Programs

WP Engine

WP Engine offer best in class WordPress Managed Hosting; I personally recommend WP Engine if you are a serious blogger as they have super fast hosting optimised just for WordPress. They offer an excellent $200 per sign up for new customers you refer.

This site is hosted on a dedicated server from WPengine.

Dreamhost

Dreamhost have been around for a long time and provide a variety of web hosting services from dedicated web hosting, VPS Hosting, managed WordPress hosting and shared hosting. Right now Dreamhost offer $97 commission for new customers.

Cloudways

Cloudways takes care of the management of open-source tools for hosting websites, like Magento, WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla. They offer a $100 referral fee for each new customer you provide – their most popular cloud hosting packages range from $10 to $30 per month.

Bluehost

BlueHost are another well known popular web hosting brand and one which I have featured on this website for the past few years, you can read my BlueHost Review to see why. They offer $65 commission for new customers which can go above $120 per signup if you can provide high volumes of new customers to them.

The advantages of Bluehost Affiliate Program include:

  • Quick Setup. Really quick and simple sign up process. You can be up ands running within the hour to go and share your referral link and get paid for anyone that signs up to any of the Bluehost packages. You can do this via sending out emails to your subscribers or writing a How to start a blog guide.
  • Top Quality Brand. Bluehost is probably the most popular web host in the world and comes recommended by WordPress. This is a seal of approval that helps to convert your audience into sales.

Disadvantages of Bluehost Affiliate Program:

  • Paypal is the only payment method.
  • Affiliate dashboard is clunky and looks old.

Inmotion Hosting

InMotion Hosting is a web hosting company that focus mainly on business users. Its technical support staff are based within the US, and they offer a 90-day money-back guarantee to offer clients complete peace of mind. InMotion Hosting keeps its plans simple by providing Linux-only web hosting.

Flywheel

Thousands of designers and developers are super fans of Flywheel WordPress hosting. Flywheel offers blazing fast site speeds, friendly and efficient customer service, industry-leading management tools, and inspiring design. With commissions of up to $500 per sale – they offer one of the best payouts in the web hosting affiliate space.

Finance Affiliate Programs

Regal Assets

Gold Investing is one of the most lucrative niches on the Internet right now, and Regal Assets has the best offer for serious affiliates. While other gold investing affiliate programs only pay you a small flat-rate for each lead, Regal Assets gives you a flat-rate + a piece of the total investment amount.

Commission Structure Details

  • $30-$100 per lead (any qualified lead with name, email & phone number)
  • $30-$100 per call (any inbound call lasting 10 minutes or longer)
  • 3% of total investment amount (if your lead invests $50,000 in precious metals with Regal Assets, you will get a $1,500 commission)

Colmex Pro

Colmex Pro is the leading European Regulated CFD Broker. Offering Tier 2 CFD’s, as well as Live Equities, Indices, Commodities, Futures, and Forex, Colmex Pro offers nearly every investment vehicle available on the US Stock Market to international day traders. Coupled with their partner’s educational packages and trade room access Colmex Pro offers investors the best opportunity to grow and learn how to day trade successfully. CPA up to $1000

Health & Fitness Affiliate Programs

SellHealth

It’s free to join the SellHealth affiliate program, though you do have to apply and be accepted before you can start promoting their products.  Once you’re accepted, you’ll have access to a number of tools, graphics, banners and more that you can use to promote SellHealth products.  The sales are actually made at company-owned Websites, which look professional and handle all of the selling. Commissions vary, but the base rate is 30% of all sales and upsells, and SellHealth says you can earn up to $350 per sale.

Market Health

The Market Health Affiliate Program allows you to market and promote the world’s leading health and beauty offers online. We offer the highest paying affiliate program and best tracking software in our industry. If you have a web site and are interested in making money off the explosive sales in the health and beauty industry, then MarketHealth.com is perfect for you. Offers include products in the health, beauty, supplement, weight loss, and skin care industries.

MoreNiche

With possibly the most transparent affiliate network online, we give affiliates access to stats no other program dare, including earning data, conversion stats, demographic information and seasonality trends. With ethics and consumer protection being high on the agenda, you can rest assured when working with MoreNiche you are working with an honest, trustworthy and transparent company.

Forex Affiliate Programs

Best Forex Partners

Best Forex Partners (BFP) was established in 2011 by a group of international financiers and global online marketing professionals who saw a need to change the nature of affiliate marketing for the better.  In a few short years they combined their over 60 years of combined financial and marketing experience to create a new way to affiliate market and have never looked back!

Forex Club

Established in 1997, FOREX CLUB (the company) is the brand name for a group of companies that provides clients from over 120 countries with platforms and services for trading forex, CFDs and other online trading and educational products. We offer every client effective tools in training, analytics and education, as well as personal support where they want it. FOREX CLUB has over 650 employees worldwide.  In 2011 alone, over 45,000 traders chose to learn forex trading with us.  FOREX CLUB was one of the industry’s first to offer zero spread trading and commission refunds on all unprofitable trades.

Finmax

Finmax is a binary options broker that emphasizes on beginner traders. Finmax provides great trading signals, which makes the trading process look much easier and convenient. You can access the trading signals service in the ‘Instruments’ section on the official website.

8Binary.com

8Binary offers any level trader the opportunity to use market leading trading platforms to manage risk and maximize profits. With a truly global reach and renowned customer service, 8Binary is a secure and safe way to trade Binary Options. Committed to offering all of its clients the safest and most user-friendly experience, 8Binary is the trusted name in the market. Whether you are a beginner, retail investor or a professional trading entity, 8Binary guarantees the best user experience possible.

Dating Affiliate Programs

FriendFinder

FriendFinder is an adult-friendly network of dating websites that has a terrific affiliate marketing program, both in terms of customer service and commission rates. Because they rely heavily on affiliates to recruit new members, they treat their affiliates like true business partners. They have a solid reputation for payment and security, and have frequent special offers. Checking into your affiliate account at FriendFinder is always a fun experience, and often a profitable one.

eHarmony

Another one of the highest paying and most popular dating affiliate programs is eHarmony, which is based on the actual earnings that can be made from each referred sale. Up to $188 can be made from a single sale. In general, the members at eHarmony are typically looking to find serious long term relationships, so many of them are willing to pay extra to find similar people.

Cupid.com

A U.K. based dating affiliate network that operates a number of mainstream and niche dating sites, including Cupid.com, Flirt.com, BoomerDating.com and PlanetSappho.com. You can promote any of these sites based upon the needs of your audience, and with so many sites to choose from, it’s pretty easy for most affiliates to find at least one or two that are a good fit. Commission rates at Cupid plc can be impressive, too, with $15 paid just for free sign ups, and up to 90 percent commission paid on paid memberships.

Internet Marketing Affiliate Programs

Sendible

Sendible is a great social media management tool which allows online marketers to schedule posts and manage multiple social accounts all at once. They offer 30% on all sign ups for the first 12 months which means you could earn up to a whopping $716 per sign up.

Niche Information
Exclusively focused on the social media marketing management space.

Product Types
The only “product” for sale in the Sendible affiliate program is the Sendible web app which is a subscription based model.

Average Commission Rate
Commission rates are fixed at 30 percent.

Cookie Duration
30-day cookies.

Who Is it for?
Existing users who want to recommend their friends and colleagues to use Sendible, or people who own blogs that create content for people who would generally be interested in a product like Sendible.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • Fast and easy to join.
  • Pays commissions on successful referrals for up to 12 months.
  • Every successful referral earns you a 30 percent commission.
  • No need to deal with mystery vendors.
  • Payouts via PayPal.

Cons: 

  • It takes 60 days to get paid.
  • Multiple pay runs, so you could end up with 3 or 4 little payments per month, which can be annoying.

Shopify.com

Shopify is a very popular site building platform for people interested in building eCommerce stores. It has been around for the past few years and seen significant growth in its user base over this time. You can earn a staggering 200% per sale for every new customer you refer to them, which means that there is up to $2400 per new customer on offer.

Shopify is probably the biggest e-commerce solution provider on the internet. Their affiliate program pays commissions on all referred purchases of Shopify products and services. Although it is a standard affiliate program, Shopify refers to it as their “Partner Program.”

Niche Information

Shopify is an e-commerce platform with hosting options as well as a payment processor. Shopify also has a large store where you can buy third-party apps and themes that work within the overall Shopify framework. The affiliate program pays commissions for sales of any of these products.

Product Types

Shopify has three different account types as well as standalone third-party products like themes and apps. Commissions are paid for sales of any of these products, including users who sign up for a 14-day free trial and then convert to a paid account. Shopify also has a wide range of blog posts, webinars, and video tutorials that can be linked to with the standard commission paid on any sales that are generated.

Average Commission Rate

The average commission rate is $58 per the Shopify website. Shopify’s commissions are paid according to different metrics. For instance, if a referral signs up for the Shopify Plus enterprise plan (the highest tier), the payout is a flat $2,000. Referrals who sign up for the standard plan earn a $598 commission. The payout for a Basic account is $58. Commissions are calculated as follows: you will earn two times the monthly rate but only two months after the user has been a paying customer.

Shopify also pays a 20 percent revenue share for referrals.

Note: The Partner Program (aka their affiliate program) also allows developers to create apps and pays a commission on all sales of your app.

Cookie Duration

Cookies expire after 30 days. If a referred visitor signs up for a free 14-day trial within that 30 days but then becomes a paying customer after the 30 days have expired, you will still earn the commission.

Who Is it for?

Shopify is probably the most popular e-commerce solutions provider out there, but because there are so many products and options, newcomers can easily get confused. If you believe your audience has products to sell and could benefit from Shopify’s products and are able to elucidate the benefits of signing up for Shopify, you can definitely earn some big money with their affiliate program.

The downside is that Shopify is only appealing for people who have physical or digital products to sell and have a need to set up a Shopify store, including site hosting, payment processing, and all the other services offered by Shopify. This can significantly narrow the appeal for this affiliate program. But if you can distinguish yourself by educating people on how to use Shopify, how it can benefit their business, and/or make them money, you could potentially big money via the affiliate program. Add in the 2 x monthly fee commission rate, and landing just a few sales of their mid-tier and top-tier products can result in significant earnings.

The revenue sharing program requires you to be an active Shopify user and successfully have at least one referral to the Shopify development store, or one referral via an affiliate link, or have gotten an existing Shopify user to upgrade to Shopify Plus (the top level tier) within the past 12 months.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • Very responsive live chat, email, and voice (phone) customer service.
  • A dedicated affiliate manager.
  • High commission rates.
  • Twice monthly payouts via PayPal (for balances over $25).
  • Shopify has a very good brand reputation.

Cons: 

  • Unpaid revenue under $25 will never be disbursed even if you close your account.
  • Closing your affiliate account is a tedious and time-consuming procedure.
  • Rather niche product as it is only appealing to people who want to sell products online.
  • No commissions paid for renewals.
  • You have to wait two months after a user becomes a paying subscriber before receiving the commission for that sale.

SEMRush

SEMRush is a popular tool for SEO’s and bloggers providing insight into how well websites perform in Google. You can earn 40% commission on all new customer sign ups. Commissions are recurring, so you will get 40% of what your referral pays them every month until they stop paying for their subscription.

URL Profiler

URL Profiler is a website and content auditing tool launched in 2014. They offer 25% lifetime commissions. For example, if a server license is purchased for $29.95 via your affiliate link, you will earn $7.49 for every month that they remain a customer (so, a 12 month subscription would yield $89.88 total commission).

ConvertKit

A relative newcomer that was only founded in 2014, ConvertKit has taken the world of email marketing by storm. According to the company, they now have nearly 20,000 active customers of their email services. Their affiliate program works by paying existing customers a lifetime 30 percent commission for referrals that subsequently become ConvertKit customers or who sign up for ConvertKit webinars and other digital products.

Niche Information
ConvertKit is exclusively focused on the email marketing space.

Product Types
The only “product” for sale in the ConvertKit affiliate program is getting other people to sign up for a ConvertKit account.

Average Commission Rate
Commission rates are fixed at 30 percent per month, but this commission is paid every month that the referred user is active.

Cookie Duration
ConvertKit uses 30-day cookies.

Who Is it for?
ConvertKit is primarily for existing ConvertKit users who feel like their audience might benefit from signing up with an email marketing product, i.e. ConvertKit. Since it costs nothing to join, pretty much every ConvertKit user should sign up for the affiliate program in order to have the custom link to share.

ConvertKit itself recommends that affiliates write emails/articles to promote ConvertKit in order to earn commissions. Some of these suggestions include getting your email readers to sign up for ConvertKit webinars and writing articles about how ConvertKit has helped you build an email list.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • Fast and easy to join for existing ConvertKit members.
  • Pays lifetime commissions on successful referrals.
  • Every successful referral earns you a 30 percent commission.
  • No need to deal with mystery vendors.
  • Payouts via PayPal.

Cons: 

  • It takes between 30-59 days to get paid.
  • ConvertKit does not offer free/reduced prices for the company’s webinars and other products that they want affiliates to promote.

StudioPress

StudioPress is a WordPress hosting service and framework that is designed to make setting up and running a WordPress site much simpler and easier. StudioPress comes with its own unique themes and SEO tools, collectively known as the “Genesis framework.”. Their affiliate program is solely for referrals to pay for a StudioPress framework account or buying a StudioPress theme. Previously, the affiliate program also included web hosting, but this is now managed separately by StudioPress’s owner, WPEngine.

Niche Information

This affiliate program is exclusively focused on getting people to pay for StudioPress products – WordPress themes and the Genesis framework.

Product Types

The affiliate products are limited to buying StudioPress (WordPress) themes and/or signing up for the StudioPress framework.

Average Commission Rate

StudioPress pays a 35 percent commission on all sales made within 60 days of clicking your affiliate link.

Cookie Duration

StudioPress uses ShareASale to track conversions, and ShareASale uses 60-day cookies. Referred customers must make their purchase within 60 days of clicking on an affiliate link in order for the commission to be earned.

Who Is it for?

StudioPress itself is somewhat of a niche product as it is targeted to existing WordPress users who found setting up and managing a WordPress site too difficult or time-consuming. StudioPress prides itself on being easy to use, but their main claim to fame is that their hosted websites are “faster and more secure” than other WordPress hosting companies as well as using the “Genesis framework” which is supposedly more SEO friendly than other WordPress builds.

You don’t have to be an existing customer of StudioPress in order to participate in their affiliate program, so if you have an existing audience that might be interested in the StudioPress framework and/or themes, you might benefit from being a StudioPress affiliate. StudioPress pays a flat 35 percent commission for all sales.

It is important to note, however, that StudioPress is now a subsidiary of WPEngine which is the company that actually does the web hosting on which StudioPress’s Genesis framework runs. The affiliate program only works with choosing the StudioPress framework and themes, not the actual hosting on WPEngine. WPEngine has a separate affiliate program for its hosting services, which yes, is a bit confusing.

Furthermore, the affiliate portal is managed by ShareASale, a separate company, so you’ll have to open an account there and be approved before you can get your affiliate links for StudioPress.

Essentially, unless you think your audience is interested in installing a StudioPress theme (for WordPress only) or using the StudioPress Genesis framework (a kind of upgraded WordPress dashboard), then joining the StudioPress affiliate network probably won’t be worth your time.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • StudioPress has a good reputation.
  • The affiliate program is easy to implement.
  • Very active community on StudioPress’s Facebook Group.
  • Very low rate of refunds.

Cons: 

  • The affiliate program doesn’t include hosting despite hosting services being provided by StudioPress’s parent company.
  • Commission rates are lower than similar competitors.
  • Very niche products without widespread public appeal.

Leadpages

Leadpages’s primary product is a tool to create customized landing pages for marketing purposes. Their affiliate program is only open for existing Leadpages customers who can refer new customers.

Niche Information

The Leadpages affiliate program is exclusively for referring people to sign up for Leadpages’s products.

Product Types

The sole product in this program is to get people to become a paid Leadpages member.

Average Commission Rate

Leadpages pays a lifetime commission of 30 percent on all sales. They also run special offers such as a $5,000 bonus for affiliates who make 10 or more sales by a given date.

Cookie Duration

Leadpages uses 30-day cookies, but Leadpages pays lifetime commissions on all sakes. Affiliate referrals are tracked via Impact/Radius.

Who Is it for?

Leadpages claims that its affiliate program is not exclusively for affiliate marketers, which is true, but the narrow focus of this niche means that only professionals affiliate marketers will ever be able to earn significant income from the program. Leadpages’s affiliate program does offer quite a lot of different options (webinars, videos, blog posts, free marketing courses, etc.) to send referrals to, which can lead to higher conversion rates if done correctly.

That being said, if you’re already an existing Leadpages user, then signing up for their affiliate program is a must. Commissions are paid on a lifetime basis, so even a single successful referral can continue to earn you money for years.

Leadpages also offers an option for affiliates to send referrals to attend a Leadpages webinar with standard commissions paid for any sale generated from the webinar. However, Leadpages requires you to get at least 150 people to sign up (but not necessarily attend) each webinar. Leadpages also offers affiliates the ability to view blog posts and videos on Leadpages’s site, again with the standard commission paid for any sales.

Unless you’re a highly satisfied customer of Leadpages already, their affiliate program is probably not right for you.

A quick round-up of the pros and cons of this program:

Pros: 

  • Pays a flat 30 percent lifetime commission on all sales, including renewals.
  • Payouts are once a month or annual basis.
  • Offers a wide range of banners, sidebar images, and social media friendly links.
  • Leadpages has a lot of interesting content to promote.
  • Very active online community on Facebook.

Cons: 

  • Only available for existing (paid) Leadpages customers.
  • Leadpages is a marketing tool, so you’ll be trying to sell a marketing tool to marketers who probably have already heard of Leadpages or are an existing customer.
  • Very niche product.

Retail Affiliate Programs

Amazon Associates

By quite a large margin Amazon has the largest affiliate marketing program out there, with products from more than 1.5 million sellers. Amazon has the most easy-to-use technology of all the affiliate programs I will be reviewing today. Beginners to affiliate marketing with even the most limited technical expertise will have no problems in getting up and running with the Amazon associates program, while more experienced marketers can create custom tools and websites with the APIs and advanced implementations available to them. The great thing about Amazon is that anything from kids toys to laptops can generate sales if they are purchased through any Amazon affiliate link.

The major drawback of the Amazon affiliate network is the commission structure. Their commissions start out as low as 2.5% yet they can be as high as 9% on certain items. Also as most of the products which are sold on Amazon are physical goods, you will have very few options to refer sales that generate a recurring monthly income.

If you are interested about starting out with Amazon Associates then check out my free guide to building an Amazon affiliate site.

Advantages include:

  • Easy to Use. Amazon’s interface is user friendly, for both beginners and experienced affiliates.
  • Very Flexible. Millions of items can be bought via Amazon, giving your ads and links a much wider appeal to your visitors.
  • Great at Paying. As you would expect from a world class company, Amazon always pays up. No danger of being ripped off.

Disadvantages can include:

  • Low Commission Rates. Commissions starting out from 4% which mean that you will need to generate a higher volume of sales in order to make your online business more sustainable.
  • Long Payment Cycles. Amazon’s affiliate payment terms mean you won’t get your money for more than 60 days after a sale has occurred.

eBay Partner Network

You can make really good commissions from the eBay partner but it depends on the products which you decide to promote. Interestingly the commission levels vary according to where you are in the world not just on the products you decide to promote. One of the great reasons to sign up is that you can earn DOUBLE commissions in your first three months. They offer free to use link generators, ad creatives and widgets for you to promote different eBay items. eBay has over 162 Million active buyers which means there is a great potential to convert your traffic.

Casino Affiliate Programs

888.com

888.com is a premium gaming destination and a well established name in the casino and poker circuit. Its site offers numerous sub-brands including 888sport, 888ladies, 888bingo, 888casino and 888poker, as well as ReefClub Casino. The 888 family of companies attract millions of players, and the company provides affiliates with frequent promotions to keep players interested.

iAffiliates

iAffiliates is an affiliate program that likes five prominent online casino brands. It actively encourages existing players to revisit its sites by using generous promotions, and new gamers are rewarded with lucrative bonuses. By signing up you can promote deals for Casino.com, Monarch Casino and slots heaven with up to $500 CPA for new customers.

Casino Blasters

Casino Blasters, also known as Golden Palace Affiliates, is the affiliate marketing program for Golden Palace casino. It’s a popular program that promises generous commission for marketers. There are bonus CPAs in the first month of membership, making it a great program to try.

Betfair Affiliates

Betfair Affiliates is the affiliate marketing program for the well known Betfair betting website. Betfair’s primary market is sports betting. It’s actually a betting exchange, so it allows gamblers to place lay bets too – in other words, bets that bank on the opposite outcome. Betfair also offers in-play betting that allows users to lock in profits before the match ends. They also have great offers for the new customers to Betfair Casino.

To find out all the jargon around Affiliate Marketing, then head over to our always up to date Affiliate Marketing Glossary.

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Jamie

My name is Jamie Spencer and I have spent the past 5 years building money making blogs. After growing tired of the 9-5, commuting and never seeing my family I decided that I wanted to make some changes and launched my first blog. Since then I have launched lots of successful niche blogs and after selling my survivalist blog I decided to teach other people how to do the same.

64 thoughts on “Best Affiliate Marketing Platforms (2018)

  1. Thanks for sharing useful stuff. This is my first visit to your blog which seems to be attractive & willing to learn in a simple manner, keep going

  2. First of all, your website design is fabulous. Nice to find that amazon associated working as great affiliate networks. Thanks for sharing such a great post. Keep it up. I’ve bookmarked your site :D

  3. Thanks for this post. I’ve learnt something new today. I’ve heard about CJ and Shareasale so I’d give them a try. Amazon seems to pay off well if you have a relatively high traffic website.

  4. AVOID using the RedHotPie Affiliate program, They take all your traffic and referrals and DO NOT PAY YOU A CENT

  5. Hi Jamie, do you know affiliate network that offers a decent commission on jewelry? I’m currently promoting BlueNile, Biamotti and Zales, managing them is rather complicated (each has it’s own program) and apart from Biamotti, all the others have a rather low commission (around 5%).

    • Unfortunately for you , that particular niche has never been a big payer when it comes to commissions. Also these products are high ticket prices, so volumes will be small.
      You’d probably make more money promoting folding bikes over engagement rings.

  6. Hi Jamie. As a merchant, we are working with Shareasale, CJ, Tradetracker and so on.
    Is there any other network you will recommand for expand?

  7. Nice one.. yes, CJ affiliate is the best one. few days ago I registered on Cj affiliate, it has some awesome Ads for different ads company, you can use any Ads according to your desires…

  8. I did launch my affiliate marketing site and I was having trouble making sales unto it. I do hope that after applying what you said will make my site better. Many thanks to you for sharing those tips.

    • Good luck Joramir – with affiliate marketing there’s no over night results – consistency is key. Keep working at it

  9. For me I would choose a program with Recurring commission. You can build a real passive income. Its the best way to go! One suggestion is contact companies who sell services and ask if you can sell their service for them. Sometimes popular affiliate programs like these have just way too many people trying to sell their service. I personally went to sitecare.ca and asked them if I could sell their service and I couldn’t be happier! So find a service you believe in and go for it!

  10. Affiliate marketing has now invaded Hollywood? We know it invaded US politics in Washington as some politicians (current and retired) are silent affiliate marketers or in MLM. Maybe we can look forward to hearing in the next few years about more celebrities going from actors and actresses to home-based affiliate marketers. Wouldn’t that be something?

  11. Hopefully I can get sales now on my affiliate blog. I haven’t made any sales on it yet, but will try what you said. Many Thanks

  12. Jamie, why do information and software product producers avoid accepting new affiliates to sell their products?. Some require affiliates to have made 100+ sales before they’ll let them sell their products. What do the producers have to lose by letting the newbie affiliates try to sell their products?

  13. I do hope to see some positive changes to my sites performance after following what you’ve said.
    Many thanks for your sound advice. Looking forward to you posting more tips about affiliate marketing. Thanks again.

  14. Hi Jamie. How can I get in touch? I need a mentor.

  15. You are a big help to me. I just made my blog and started doing affiliate marketing however I am struggling on the next step. I don’t know how will make people buy through my blog. It’s frustrating you know. What you said lifted up my spirit and I wish I can see sales next month or so. Cheers!

    • Hi Mike

      Why not email me your URL and I can give you some feedback on where you might need to do a bit more work.

      Thanks

      Jamie

  16. Hi, your article is brilliant. You’re an expert! I can’t wait to try it to my affiliate sites and hoping to read more affiliate marketing tips from you soon. Cheers!

  17. Hi Jamie! Awesome post. I just started an online shop (Ukulele and accessories) using Shopify and drop shipping with Aliexpress. Do you recommend I join an affiliate network to help drive traffic to my site? Thanks a lot for you input!

    • Johann

      Affiliates might be a very good way to gain sales and traffic to your site.

      Good luck

      Jamie

  18. Hello Jamie,

    This is Simon, thank you for your post, it is very helpful for me. However, we are a lighting company, and we are plan to try the Affiliate Website to increase our sale. But it seem that there are many different Affiliate website to be chose and some of them also need pay some fee to begin, so as we just begin to do this, which website is your recommend ?
    CJ or Sharesale ? or others ?

    • I would say Shareasale is better for small businesses as the start up costs are very little and the support you get is pretty awesome.

      Their affiliate tracking and management technology is very good and easy to understand and use. Their affiliate managers are really good as well and will guide you as to what you need to do to make a successful affiliate scheme for your business.

      Shareasalehttps://makeawebsitehub.com/wp-admin/edit-comments.php#comments-form

      • Hi Jamie,Thanks for your post!
        I am amazon seller,and we don’t have our website.
        I want to find affiliate makerters,to increase our sale.
        Should I try shareasale or other webistes?
        Thanks!

      • I would continue to use Amazon rather than try to start up your own affiliate program elsewhere. Amazon have the traffic there to push your product to millions of people and have a huge network of Amazon affiliates to help them.

  19. Hi Jamie- Great post! Have you heard of Pepperjam? I’m curious how they stack up to these other affiliate networks.

    • I haven’t. I’ll check them out. Thanks for the heads up.

  20. Hey Jamie!

    My name is Ketan Jharbade and I just started a website beststuff4you using WordPress.

    I have joined amazon associates program and you are right, they pay very little commission to you.

    Can you suggest what else can I do so I can earn online?

    • Hi Ketan

      I’d stick with Amazon if I were you. All of my Amazon sites only have Amazon affiliate links. If you use Google Adsense display ads on your site, you’re literally taking people away from your site for the sake of just a few cents with these type of ads. If you direct them just to Amazon, then you have a greater chance of earning more money from that click.

      Build a website for either Amazon or Adsense, never both. In my experience, it just doesn’t work.

  21. Amazon has changed. The tier method for commissions, The days of 1-6 at 4%, 7-30 at 6%. 31 – 110 at 6.5%, are over. The tier method ended March 1, 2017.

    Products are now put in a category. The commission will be based on the category each product has been placed in whether or not the category is correct. For instance, I had a sale for a child riding toy tractor. Instead of it being in toys category which would have only earned me 3%, it was actually placed in lawn and garden category which I then actually earned 8% instead.

    I have seen 2 identical items ordered, maybe one has long sleeves, the other short sleeves, that end up in 2 different categories resulting in 2 different commissions earned.

    Amazon does not care that products are put in the wrong category which in part is because Amazon may not allow a seller to use certain categories that are actually the appropriate ones for the products being sold by seller.

    I have lost money since the new commission schedule has gone into affect. The associates also say they are losing money, a lot of it, who have discussed this on the Amazon Discussion Board.

    Unfortunately, for me, it seems that people will not order products I list from Share A Sale, Viglink etc even if the seller is a major retailer, but they will order same product if I promote it from the Amazon site.

    • It’s a bit of a set back, but I think you can still make decent cash on Amazon if you target the right products. I’ve seen a dip in income of around 10 to 15%, but this just makes me more determined to get more traffic. More traffic = more clicks = more Amazon commission.

  22. Thank you so much for your post! I am going to start my affiliate trip in next weeks. So how do you think about some networks such as JVzoo, W+, Zaxaa, Paykickstart,.. Should I join them??

    • Probably best to make sure you have your site ready first before you sign up.

  23. Great article, thank you! I have a health & fitness business that I have launched that sells specialized training programs in a digital download format. I looked initially at Clickbank, but they require payment of their fees on all sales–regardless of whether they came through Clickbank affiliates or not.

    My question, which platform would you recommend for a start-up digital download company?

    I don’t mind some startup costs, but the CJ site quoted me $1,500 just to get started! Ouch.

    • Check out ShareASale
      Very low start up costs, and overall, they are probably you’re best bet.

  24. Hi Jamie! Thank you for the great information. I just learned about affiliate marketing last week. The source however, is an older couple who work for World Wide Dreams Builders (WWDB). So, basically Amway. After researching a bit. I have no interest in WWDB and. (It sounds like years of recruiting people with minimal payout) Though, I am highly intrigued by e-commerce and affiliate marketing. Before your post the company I recognized was Amazon. Can you please tell me if that will be the best 1st step. I am currently an unemployed student Veteran. So plan to fully emerge into this business regime and would greatly appreciate your advice on this!!!

    • Hi Dominique

      Amazon is a great way to get started with affiliate marketing. I would check out my guide to building your own Amazon site.

      I still run a handful of Amazon sites which bring in about $20k per month on autopilot.

      Jamie

  25. Hi there man, im started a online business in studio recording equipment,.. what would be the one affiliate that you would recommend?

  26. I would personally agree with linkshare.com as a great affiliate marketing platform to join as a publisher. Here’s why. Back in 2005 when I knew nothing about affiliate marketing and was using blogger.com as a free blogging platform without any experience whatsoever and joining Walmart.com as my first official affiliate program, I was able to insert Walmart affiliate in its in my blogger blog and earn a $72 commission. I was onto affiliate marketing for life from there.

    Later on, I managed to earn more money from Walmart.com as an affiliate and joined commission junction and other affiliate networks to earn more money in affiliate marketing. the one part I really find challenging is creating rich content for my site every day or every other day. This is when I focus on other things such as YouTube video marketing, writing periodicals online, and so on. But nevertheless, joining a multiple affiliate networks is good for anyone to do because you want to create diversify sources of income. Just be mindful that when you join multiple affiliate networks you’re not only keeping in touch regularly with the affiliate managers you partner with through those specific affiliate programs, assure also asking them questions often about how to create effective affiliate landing pages,, informative YouTube videos with your affiliate link in them, as well as asking your affiliate manager to offer any other kind of promotional tactics you can use to increase your affiliate commission potential. I am sick and tired of hearing some people say they never earn one dime in affiliate marketing. That’s absolutely nonsense because they’re lazy and don’t bother to do the extra work. If you’re building relationships with your target audience and affiliate managers, creating content for your site and engaging YouTube videos daily or every other day, and staying active with other marketers in the affiliate marketing community, there’s no reason for you to fail.. Simple as that!

    Thank you for this thought provoking blog posts discussing affiliate marketing networks and one of my favorite affiliate networks which is LinkShare.com! :-)

  27. Hi,
    Great article, thank you.

    Couple of questions:
    1. I’ve built a Shopify site (using dropshipping from Aliexpress + Oberlo), there is a good market, but the items are not the best, and I’d prefer a more automated process, could I find a good program on ShareASale ?

    2. I’ve been slowly building social profiles on Instagram and Facebook, and I want to use them for affiliate sales without a site, Could I use ShareAsale for that purpose or do I have to have a site per niche I’m targeting ?

    Thanks again, I’ll be following your site from now on.
    Roy.

    • Hi Roy

      Answers to your questions:

      1. I think you mean that you want to become an affiliate for better products rather than source them yourself and sell them on your site. Shareasale would be a good option or Amazon FBA or associate program.

      2. You really need a website to promote products via Shareasale.

      Thanks

      Jamie

  28. The good thing about affiliate marketing is that this industry is here to stay and will always be a reliable source of revenue for affiliates and bloggers looking to turn their side hustle into a full time business.

  29. Hi Jamie

    I stumbled upon your site while looking for a honest comparison between Clickbank and CJ affiliates. I must say you have some pretty solid information.. So Amazon is the best start for a newbie, as opposed to Clickbank, CJ or shareasale?

    • Hi Phillip

      In my experience, Amazon and Shareasale are the easiest platforms to make money from. Period!

      Jamie

  30. Dear Jamie,
    I have a website based on Website Marketing, SEO, Email Marketing and Virtual Assistant service. Now, I want to start affiliate program on my site.
    You already mentioned some platform.
    After reading the full post, I am confused which platform should I select?
    If you give some suggestion it would be a great pleasure.
    Thanks,
    Mahan

    • Do you mean that you want affiliates to promote your own product / service?

      If so, then something like leaddyno.com might be a good fit for your business.

      • Actually, I want to promote other’s service or product in my website through affiliation. So that, I get some profit.
        Did I mean to you?

  31. Thanks for the comparison, Jamie.

    I agree with you on Amazon Associates. The 4% start is really, really poor. Sure, you can build it up quite quickly, but it’s annoying when you reset back to 4% at the start of the month, and then someone buys an expensive new bed, or an expensive outdoor grill, etc.

    I’ve just finished setting up an amazon affiliate site that’s about art supplies (I don’t mind giving out the niche – take it, it’s easy pickings) because the items are usually not expensive, and bought with other related items. This is helping raise my commision percentage at the start of the month.

  32. Hi Jamie, Thank you for the useful info!

    I need some advice.

    I just completed my course at programming school and learned how to hand-code a website. Now I’d like to build a website on my own and start doing affiliate marketing. This will be a food blogs and food recipes website. Would this be a good approach to start making money online? Greatly appreciate your advice!

    Advice from anyone is greatly appreciated!

    Thanks,
    Joy

    • Hi Joy

      Sounds good to me. You can include Amazon products within your content and get commission from the sales you generate from the traffic you send them.
      Maybe have a section on the site where you review food / cooking related products that are on Amazon. For example, “Ten Of The Best can Openers for the modern kitchen” or “A Useful Guide On The Best Food Processors For The Home”.

      This type of content will attract traffic from Google which will then convert into clicks from your site to Amazon.

      There’s loads of methods of monetizing a site like this. Also have a look at my post about making money from blogging.

      I would also check out this affordable course from Michelle Schroeder-Gardner will show you how you can get up and running extremely quickly and with no affiliate marketing experience.

      Michelle currently makes around $120,000 per month from affiliate marketing alone and has been featured in Forbes and various other publications, so she knows exactly what she is talking about.

      Good luck Joy!
      Keep in touch. Let me know how you get on.

  33. Is it better to have a webpage or two to sell one good high end product? Or do you think it is better to have a blog with lots of different products from different affiliate programs?
    Thanks and I love your info.

    • Hi Rose

      If you are promoting a high ticket item e.g. over $1000 you might want to create several pages about the product. If you are promoting low ticket items e.g. under $30 then you can have several items on a page. You might also want to promote other compatible items.

      For example the Amazon Echo Dot is under $50 – but to get the most out of it you might want to buy a smart bulb or smart plug (both around $30 each) so Alexa can adjust your lighting.

      In which case you would feature those products on the page too – you might also offer a free guide or email series to help people get the most out of their Amazon Alexa device and the compatible accessories.

  34. Thanks!
    So what I gather from your comment is that you don’t have to do a full blog with tons of posts and lots of different products, but a couple of pages around a product and accessories for that product. And then do another blog the same way, right?
    I

  35. Hi, Hope all is well.

    I am currently creating a website that will distribute online courses.

    Is this something i could get affiliates to sell, if so how could you as a business help me?

    Regards

    Sam

    • Sam

      This is definitely a great opportunity to use affiliates to improve your sales. There are lots of different platforms out there which you could use to manage the affiliate partnerships and payments – I would start by looking at something like https://teachable.com/ if you want to sell your own courses.

      Jamie

  36. Hi, Jamie! Very good list. I needed something like this for 2018 so that I know what to target in the future blogs I create. As for now, I’m comfortable using SiteGround affiliate network and it’s pretty good actually. Their hosting service is pretty much the best considered its price. I’ve tried others but SiteGround stands out. I’ll also try new affiliate networks, something from the list you have just provided. I think Amazon is too saturated at the moment, and I need a better network. 2018 will be interesting indeed.

  37. Hi Jamie, thanks for all the info you are providing here. Greatly appreciated!

    Given that I am still in reading and preparation phase, I am mainly interested to overlap my niche with real life interests so I could have motivation to produce content on regular basis. Two that I am highly interested are PC parts and Fitness. I am aware they are too general subjects with lot of sites doing the same, but my idea is to produce constant review on PC parts, Laptops, Mobile devices, Accessories all in different categories, create lists like top5 or 10 under XX budget etc. Similar approach I would use if I I decide to go with Fitness path and divide content training advice, review of fat loss methods, supplementation, nutrition etc. I am aware that this will be a long journey and that it can pass few months before sales start to kick in and that’s the risk I am ready to take. My questions are:
    1. Is this something you think can be profitable?
    2. Is this structure feasible or you would focus on more target specific niche (e.g. mobile&laptop batteries/chargers)
    3. Should I create some basic article type content before starting to include affiliate links in reviews.
    4. Should I try to buy used domain because of already established back links or new one will do just fine.
    5. Is investing in mail/social marketing from the beginning good idea or I should wait for some time to see if website produces traffic based on content.

    I am aware I’ve asked lot of questions but your answers would for have great benefit for others as well.
    Looking forward to your answer and thanks in advance.

    • 1. Yes – I actually own a couple of sites specifically monetised by Amazon promoting computer accessories

      2. I think your structure is fine

      3. I wouldn’t just produce affiliate content (reviews, comparisons, buying guides) – I would mix it up with some tutorials and add value too.

      4. If you can find a good dropped domain then it might be worth the investment as you will have some backlinks to start with, but I don’t think that’s entirely necessary especially if you do good keyword research and good site structure.

      5. I wouldn’t bother putting too much effort into social media marketing but sites like Reddit/Quora would be a good place to research products and information. Definitely start building an email list from day one.

  38. Hi Jamie, awesome content that is very helpful esp with the resources, links and the rich discussions. Want to start e-commerce and blog for money…selling others products, want to go full on with this, tired of the daily routine crunch working for others. I live in a developing country (PNG) that has high internet costs (work still in progress with getting rates down…) so will see how I go with your posts. Any advise? Don’t have a website yet, have to build one I guess….

    Thanks heaps, will be following closely :D

    Jason

  39. Hi jamie, I really appreciate the highly informative content you put up, can I use one website to promote products of more than one Company, like Promoting Amazon products, shareAsale, SellHealth and other Affiliate marketing sites.

    Thank you.

    • Hey. Yes you can use just one website to promote multiple affiliate programs, but I’d say that your website should focus on just one niche. So you mention, SellHealth, that would lead me to believe your site is about health and fitness. I would then advise you to stick to that niche rather than promoting unrelated products like dog leashes and fashion accessories.

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