My next self-funded business hit $160,000 in revenue in its first year alone. After that first taste of self-made success, I’ve gone on to sign consulting contracts worth tens of thousands of dollars with startups like LinkedIn and Google, launch profitable online courses, and build a following of hundreds of thousands for this blog and my podcast series.
There’s also the fact that Wealthy Affiliate is not and never claims to be a get-rich-quick strategy. You will learn how to build a real, legitimate online business and one that can earn you some serious cash, but just like any other business, it is going to take a lot of time, effort, patience, and support along the way. If you have realistic expectations, are willing to learn from those who have succeeded before you, and you’re willing to put at least 6 months into your business before you see any profits at all, then Wealthy Affiliate is a good place for you.
When I enrolled in WA, I almost immediately had misgivings, which I ignored at first, about two things: 1) using their platform to build sites, as you mentioned, and 2) the bootcamp, which had too much of a circular flavor for my taste – and for my trust. I was actually surprised that so many people would promote WA instead of developing a personal niche. Looking backwards, bootcamp sites are easy to spot: they all have a link at the top called “My #1 Recommendation” or something similar. So much for originality.
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.
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.
I realize my bias is already showing through, so I’ll get to what I DON’T like about Wealthy Affiliate below. But, as I’ve already stated, overall I don’t know of any other place that is better for new affiliate marketers to get started than Wealthy Affiliate. If you take a look around my site, you’ll notice I’ve spent a TON of time on it. I’ve spent years of my life building this site, and there are currently almost 500 posts here, all for free, for everyone. It is in my best interest to promote only the best training course and that training course is Wealthy Affiliate.
Selling graphic T-shirts is big business. Customized T-shirts with clever sayings or graphics are ideal for online sales. Sites like Teespring allow you to sell customer shirts. Teespring’s unique model allows you to design the shirt and get buyers lined up to purchase it. This saves you from the initial investment in stock and the time on processing and shipping orders, though you’ll likely make a smaller profit on each shirt sold.
I am interested in promoting member-to-member opportunities. Not affiliate marketing. I have a website that generates leads each time I place ads. I pay for these ads. Does WA show how to generate traffic to other types of sites such as member-to-member sites? Many affiliate opportunities I have seen only offer $19 to perhaps $80 per sale. Member-to-member opportunities earn $250 – $1,000 per sale. Since it is just as easy to make a $19 sale as it is to make a $1,000 sale, I prefer to get paid $1,000 instead of $19 or so. My capture page is below. I am looking to generate leads at a lower cost. Thank you.

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.
Set up the site. Choose a website building platform, such as WordPress, Joomla or Drupal. Next, choose a domain name and web hosting for your site. The domain name is your web address. Web hosting is a service that connects your site to the internet. Once you have your domain name and web hosting, go to the control panel of your hosting account and install your website platform. Design your website by choosing and installing a theme.[9]

The key is to first validate your niche by looking at search trends, analyzing the competition and making sure it’s something that can be monetized. Once you’ve got that, start building it out and producing great content. Focus on nothing but the rankings for at least 6-12 months. During this time I would advise putting nothing on the site except for maybe a simple adsense ad. Adsense is not a profitable way to go per se, but it’s an easy way to get started, plus Google must continually sniff your site in order to serve up relevant ads. Site visitors generally find adsense to be less invasive since the ads shown to them are usually relevant anyway.
I joined WA a few months and a premium member now. For the 1st time, I am reading WA from outside. I decided to join WA by reading a few articles from the web which I really liked. There is not a single day I have not enjoyed. Every day I see people converting, sites getting ranked, people getting to 1st page, even ranked #1 of Goole. It is lots of hard work and you got to be a skilled writer in your niche. The community help is unparallel. The longest I have seen the conversion is 3.5 years. But the person said he started the website before completing the training and made a mistake. He was about to give up when he saw 4 figure/ month conversion. He has ~200 posts. It feels good to see lots research and authority gained over the time. It is lot smaller time frame compared to my Ph.D. You are always told it takes 3-4 years to see any conversion. People having no tech knowledge are making a good income. I am learning SEO and WP management in my spare time to help myself. It is addictive.
So Michelle, it looks like you are out of luck unless you have a very good lawyer. Personally, I wouldn’t bother and would try and retrieve as much as possible from any site hosted with WA. I hope that you bought your domain name somewhere else if you intend to keep it. If not many hosting companies will throw one in for free if you buy a hosting package. In any case Good Luck!
I have a couple lessons to finish with the bootcamp, and what I’m thinking about doing if I even think about continuing to blog is create a site not around WA but to help others figure out how to make money online, wordpress, how to create a website, select a hosting platform like Hostgator which I had previous experience with before WA, clickfunnels and so forth. But yeah, it’s been real, and an eye opening experience. I’ll likely be transferring my domains back to Hostgator here.
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.
Good to hear from you man. I couldn’t agree any more, continuous writing and not being rewarded for it in the ways you want can be very disappointing. I’ve never heard of Textbroker until now, I’ll make sure to give them a look, I’m glad you brought that up. Yeah, I was reading through a couple of your comments in this article and it sounds like WA had that direct linking system back when they were starting out, and then grew into blogging. Those are the two systems of affiliate marketing-one for direct linking and doing as many niches as you’d like, while the other WA claims is a “long term business” to stick to one niche and build out your links through articles, reviews, etc. Great points, WA does make it seem like you didn’t try hard enough to breach your success, and the same goes for the people there…
Posting ads on Craigslist is technically easy, but people often have fears about posting their personal information on the site. I communicate mostly through email when doing business on Craigslist, and I’ve never run into any issues. I’ve never been ripped off, nor have I been murdered or raped for using the site. It takes common sense, so use your best judgment, but don’t assume someone is a thief just because of their preferred communication method. For an extra bonus, google “funny Craigslist ads” to see some delightful examples of guerilla and grassroots marketing.
My next self-funded business hit $160,000 in revenue in its first year alone. After that first taste of self-made success, I’ve gone on to sign consulting contracts worth tens of thousands of dollars with startups like LinkedIn and Google, launch profitable online courses, and build a following of hundreds of thousands for this blog and my podcast series.
Wealthy affiliate sucks. The free membership for 7 days is no where enough time to get your head around everything they provide you, 14 days would have been better. After this you only get access to level 1 training that teaches you hardy anything, to learn the rest they charge 50 dollars per level! A complete rip off. If you go premium they charge 49 dollars per month! Pure extortion. If you want to comment or ask questions you can’t unless you go premium! Any what would be your advice to getting into affiliate marketing? The steps. Any ideas. Thanks

This sounds like exactly what I am looking for, Tony. Yours is by far the best review of an affiliate opportunity that I have ever read — it has caught my attention and fired me up! I am a published audiobook narrator/independent publisher who writes my own marketing content 🙂 My goal (also with my audiobooks) is to build a strong residual income – and I came across your amazing review of WA through a search I conducted yesterday.
Hi Craig – Correct me if I am wrong, but your information about not being able to access your website after going Premium is also misleading. Your domain name is your own and you can move it to any other hosting company. When you quit your hosting from any company — including Wealthy Affiliate — of course you can no longer access your site from there. You make it sound like your site is “lost” or somehow WA makes it “disappear” when in fact all you need to do is pay someone else to host it and move your domain. You will pay for hosting no matter what, it is often $25+ per month for not even as many features as are offered by Wealthy Affiliate. This means that for an additional $25 you can access on-going training on SEO updates, social media, and other necessary services. This seems like a deal to me. Yes, Wealthy Affiliate makes it sound easier than it is to get to the money, but I would rather that people figure out that they are not willing to do the work for a $49 loss than for a $300-$1000+ loss as is the cost of other programs.
Thanks for the encouraging article. It helped remind me why I joined WA in the first place. Such a great community of people and opportunities. The growth of your success truly is limited only by how much work you want to put into it! It’s super cool that you have found so much success. I’ve only been a member for about a month so I’m excited to see what the future holds!

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 ? 

On MunchEye you can take a peak at the JV pages for these products, and on those pages they often show what the upsell funnel looks like. Some of them are utterly ridiculous, like you pay £4.99 for the front end product but there are £500 worth of upsells. And this is how affiliates are able to make so much money from these launches, because people get tricked into all these upsells.
Your WA review is by far the best one I’ve seen and it helped me to decide not to re new either so Thanks! One thing that drove me nuts was that any time I would enter my site dot com I could never reach my site from ANY device ( cell phone or computer) and would simply see an error message. Yet if I clicked on the link to my site from WA’s control panel I’d reach the site. This use to drive me crazy! I had no plug ins on my site yet and my upline the aforementioned One more cup of Coffee dude said he had no clue and suggested typing /wp-login.php after dot com to see if that would work. I asked why in the world would I have to add /wp-login.php or expect anybody else to do that when going to my site?
Learn then selling guidelines. Each marketplace has guidelines that define what you can and cannot sell. State and federal laws also impact what items are prohibited. In general, you cannot sell alcohol, weapons, service contracts, animals or event tickets. Also, while not always prohibited, you may find restrictions on how you can sell items in some categories, such as art, gift cards and coupons.[27] eBay, Craigslist and Amazon publish these guidelines on their websites.
Cookie stuffing involves placing an affiliate tracking cookie on a website visitor's computer without their knowledge, which will then generate revenue for the person doing the cookie stuffing. This not only generates fraudulent affiliate sales but also has the potential to overwrite other affiliates' cookies, essentially stealing their legitimately earned commissions.
Once you have this down, you’ll be a budding Etsy entrepreneur. Provide great quality to your customers, and they’ll often return. Many people are willing to pay a premium for quality handmade designs. Etsy (like EBay and Amazon) takes a cut off the top for selling items through their site. PayPal takes another cut, and you have to be careful with taxes on all income, so be diligent while building your online business.

With that said, I want to fully disclose that I am indeed an affiliate for Wealthy Affiliate. If you click on any of my affiliate links, like this one, I get credit in the event you sign up for a paid membership option. If you do want to sign up for Wealthy Affiliate, clicking on my affiliate link is actually beneficial for you, too. If you sign up after clicking my link, I get notified and we are able to have private 1-on-1 conversations within’ the Wealthy Affiliate  community. This is a huge added benefit and all you have to do is use my affiliate link before signing up for your free account.
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