Is An Affiliate Marketing Site Still Profitable To Start In 2024?

There have been so many changes to online marketing in the last couple of years that it is hard to keep up with them. Google is issuing updates at an unprecedented rate that changes the landscape dramatically. Which has people asking if they can still make a successful affiliate marketing site lately.

The reason for the question is that Google’s recent update seems to have targeted niche affiliate sites that promote products from e-commerce sites.

The truth is that if you can wade through the hype, myth, and misinformation you can actually build an affiliate website and be successful.

But because the landscape has changed, it is not as easy as it once was and the tips and tricks from the last few years are no longer relevant.

affiliate marketing site

In this article, we will go over what it takes now to make sure you can actually make money with an affiliate marketing website.

Focus On User Experience

Everything Google does is to make sure that the user gets the information that they are looking for. If the user is happy, then Google makes more money.

It can be as simple as that. This means that you have to satisfy the user first and Google will reward you for your efforts.

It used to be easy to manipulate Google and rank even without giving a thought to the visitor to your site. Getting traffic was far easier than it is now. If you keyword-stuffed your articles and just filled the meta description with lots of related keywords you could generally rank your article on the first page.

Now, it is far more difficult to rank if you are not taking care of the user experience. To understand how important this is to Google, look no further than the rollout of the new metric called Core Web Vitals.

This metric is used to gauge the user experience based on things like how long the site takes to load and if you can click links without them moving.

Website Pages Of An Affiliate Marketing Site

One thing that drives people mad and makes them want to leave your site is if the page shifts as you are going to click a link and click the wrong one as a result.

These are things that Google wants to track so if your site is slow and the page shifts then this is going to cause problems when ranking a post.

click on affiliate marketing sites

Besides the Core Web Vitals, you should also think about how easy it is for a visitor to navigate the site. They should be able to get the information they are looking for quickly and in a click or two.

Make It White Hat For An Affiliate Marketing Site

If you’re unfamiliar with some of the common terms around affiliate marketing, there are three basic models to follow. You can go whitehat which is doing everything above board.

WIth whitehat, you don’t need to take any shortcuts or try to game the Google algorithm.

Greyhat is something that falls into a sort of grey area, hence the name. Nothing is specifically against the TOS when it comes to Google so lots of liberties are taken.

This involves things like paying for backlinks or paying for guest posts on high-authority sites with a link back to your homepage.

Then there is blackhat which is doing things specifically against the TOS of Google or even some of the affiliate programs you may be in. This ranges from buying up a PBN or personal blog network to direct backlinks or traffic back to your website among many other tactics.

However, this is the riskiest way to go since Google is always refining its AI so it can sniff out the worst offenders. Usually, it is a matter of time before the site gets penalized or even deindexed.

Going whitehat is the way to make this work for the long term and assure that you can actually make a business out of this. Just focus on content marketing and generating traffic and conversions the natural way and you can still make money off of affiliate marketing.

The Money Is On The List

The biggest key to making money with an affiliate website these days is the same as it always was. You need to build a good-sized email list. Since Google can decide to do away with any affiliate sites whenever they please, having an email list under your control means it won’t matter.

Every site should provide enough value that people are willing to hand over their email addresses to receive more information and offers.

When you write a product review or there is a sale happening then you can send the people in your list to the post instead of hoping that Google will send traffic to the page.

These people are also very motivated to spend money or they wouldn’t be on your list so the conversion rate can be quite high.

Affiliate Income vs Ads For An Affiliate Marketing Site

Right now, ad revenue is starting to keep pace with what you could make with affiliate commissions. Instead of focusing on products, you can start building content around helpful information.

In this way, you can target lower competition keywords that will rank easier without needing to buy backlinks. Building up traffic will usually be faster and the right niche can see a very good RPM from ads.

Then, if you sprinkle some affiliate links in where they make sense you can pad your earnings that way.

This may be the best way forward since Google doesn’t have a problem with sites that run ads. As long as the ads don’t negatively impact the Core Web Vitals, your site should be able to run on autopilot and make money.

Can You Promote Your Affiliate Marketing Site On Social Media?

If you do be sure to share your blog posts with the affiliate links in them vs. just sharing the affiliate links themselves.  Now, of course, Twitter X does not have a policy against affiliate links but who will click on them is the question!

People love to read the information before making any purchases. So if you promote affiliates on social media be sure to provide information in your posts. Why would someone need the product? What pain points does a product solve?

Those are the things to consider before trying to sell any affiliate products or services.

Finding The Best Affiliate Programs To Promote

Choosing the right affiliate marketing programs is crucial for success. Look for products or services that align with your niche and audience’s interests.

Research the commission rates, cookie duration, and payment terms to ensure they meet your expectations.

Check the program’s reputation, tracking capabilities, and support. Join programs with high-quality products, fair policies, and ample marketing resources. Test different programs, monitor performance metrics, and adjust your strategy accordingly.

I’ve been through many different affiliate programs through the years and have finally learned which work best here on Inspire To thrive after many years of trial and error.

I love affiliates who help you along the way and communicate often with you. They also come out with new products and offers.

The best way to promote affiliate links is by providing immense value to your audience. Create high-quality, informative content that genuinely helps readers solve problems or learn something new.

This can be done on your blog and on social media sites as well as in videos.

Naturally weave in relevant affiliate links within this useful content. Then, gain trust by being transparent about your affiliate relationships. Offer unbiased opinions and highlight both the pros and cons.

Build an engaged community by consistently delivering top-notch material. Leverage email lists, social media, and strategic partnerships to reach more potential customers.

Always put your audience’s needs first, and the affiliate income will follow.

Instead of immediately pushing for a sale, focus on offering solutions to people’s problems. Start by providing helpful information. This approach can build trust and establish credibility with your audience.

Conclusion Of Affiliate Marketing Sites

As you can see, you should stop listening to people who are saying that affiliate marketing is dead. It is alive and well as long as you adapt to the new reality instead of trying what used to work in the past.

There is still plenty of money to be made out there you just have to work harder to get it.

Do you have an affiliate marketing site? I’d love to know more about it in the comments below.

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Lisa Sicard
  • Hi Lisa,

    Great points about how what worked in the past no longer works on the affiliate marketing front. Hype, smoke and mirrors as prime selling points no longer influence people because we have seen it all. People have enough common sense to overcome their greed or desperation. Now we need to create value and offer a seamless user experience to connect deeply with readers. From there, trust built positions bloggers to increase their affiliate sales.


    • Lisa says:

      Hi Ryan, thank you. I love that phrase “smoke and mirrors” ! Offering value is what it is all about these days Ryan. I’ve been thinking more of what I can give away free to grow my email list. I have one information piece but need something more. Thanks for your insights and have a great day and new week in paradise 🙂

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