49 Best Affiliate Marketing Programs For Beginners To Make Money In 2023
If you’re a new blogger, or you have a current blog that you’re thinking about monetizing for extra income, affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to do this. The amount of affiliate referral programs you can join now is completely overwhelming, especially if you’re new to this world – so we’ve compiled a list of the best affiliate programs for beginners that are reputable, easy to sign up for, and pay well.
Affiliate marketing is exciting and addictive – especially when you’re just starting out. But the reality is that many people give up before the good stuff starts happening. It can take anywhere from 6 months to 2 years before an affiliate website starts to gain traction and make money – so as a beginner, you need to commit to the long, thankless process of content creation and promotion.
Once you’re okay in your mind with this long haul commitment, it’s time to look at some of the popular affiliate marketing programs that accept beginners into their network.
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What To Think About Before You Apply For Affiliate Programs
Affiliate marketing presents an opportunity for literally anybody to start making some juicy passive income. If only it was as easy as that!
Starting your blog or website with the intent to monetize it takes some serious thought, strategy, and most of all – hard work and patience – before you start to see any results. Many people rush headlong into affiliate marketing with the goal of making thousands of dollars in a short time, and retiring early.
The reality is more like making a few cents in your first year, having lots of sleepless nights, and wondering why nothing is working on a day-to-day basis.
The first mistake many people make is to sign up for any affiliate program that looks like it will pay out big dollars – regardless of whether it fits into your niche or not.
Say you have a travel website for example, and you notice an affiliate program for diet pills that has serious commissions payments. So you sign up for it, and start creating content around these amazing diet pills. The problem here is that your audience visits your site for travel content…and not to be shilled some diet pills they’ve never heard of. The result – this damages your credibility as a travel content creator, alienates your audience, and is unlikely to result in any sales through your affiliate link.
- Join affiliate programs that are related to your niche – this is your numero uno priority.
Secondly, only promote products, services, and businesses that you personally use and/or recommend. Promoting things that you’ve never heard of, or that you know are crappy, will leave a bad taste in your mouth as a content creator – and your audience won’t thank you for this either. Your goal as an affiliate marketer is to become an authority in your niche – and to get your audience to know, like, and trust you. And you can’t do that if you’re out there promoting terrible things!
- Only promote brands, products, and services that you personally use and/or highly recommend.
What Makes A Good Affiliate Marketing Program?
Once you’ve made a list of suitable niches that you can promote on your website, it’s time to narrow your affiliate marketing programs down even further. Here are some things to consider before signing up:
Easy To Join And Use
Most of the affiliate programs mentioned in this list are very simple to sign up for. You may have to wait a few days to be approved, but in general, it’s a pretty easy process for beginners, and you don’t need a huge website with hundreds of blogs to get approved for these programs.
However, on the other side of signing up, things can potentially turn into a nightmare for newbies. Some of the affiliate dashboards in these programs look like they’ve never been updated since 1994. They’re clunky, ugly, and confusing.
Where are your links? Who knows? Do they have banners and promo graphics you can use? No idea. Who can you ask for help? LOL!
This tends to be more of a problem with some of the in-house affiliate programs. The big affiliate networks obviously want to make it as easy and fast as possible for you to start making sales, so these dashboards are typically pretty intuitive and user-friendly, even for beginners.
When you get accepted into a program, make sure you have a good play around with the dashboard interface to see how easy it will be for you to use and understand – before you start creating any content. This can save you a ton of time in the beginning as a new affiliate marketer.
Easy To Contact Support
There are many reasons you might need help as a beginner in the affiliate marketing world. Anything from signing up to a merchant, to creating links, creating banners, and optimzing for click throughs can warrant a quick message to a support team or account manager.
So – if your affiliate program doesn’t have anyone to talk to, things can get pretty frustrating. Affiliate networks tend to have great support systems in place, ensuring your problems get fixed and questions get answered quickly. Many affiliate programs also give you a dedicated account manager that you can contact with any questions.
Before you sign up for a program, it’s helpful to know what level of support is available to you as an affiliate.
Reliable Payouts And Good Commission Structures
Big commissions aren’t much use to you if you don’t get paid for months.
Remember to check the payout terms, payment thresholds, and payout cycles before you sign up for any affiliate program or affiliate network.
While we’re done a bit of the groundwork for you in our list of best affiliate programs for beginners, these payout terms are subject to change quite frequently, so make sure you check the individual affiliate website for the most up to date payment terms.
A Variety Of Brands, Products, And Services For You To Promote
In the beginning it might seem that you only need Amazon to start your affiliate marketing empire. There’s enough products on there to keep you going forever, pretty much, and it’s a great option for beginner affiliate promoters.
However, it’s always wise to not rely on one affiliate. Amazon in particular can slash its commission rates without much warning, leaving you earning cents instead of dollars for all your hard work.
Plus – there’s always the very real risk of Amazon cancelling their affiliate program entirely, which means you (and hundreds of thousands of other affiliate marketers) would have to start from scratch.
Choose a few different affiliate to get you started, so you have plenty of things to talk about, and you’re not reliant on one brand, business, or website, to keep your affiliate commissions coming in.
What Are the Best Affiliate Programs for Beginners?
Okay – let’s take a look at some of the best affiliate programs for beginners to help you get your new affiliate marketing business off the ground.
Amazon Associates Affiliate Program
The Amazon affiliate program started in 1996 – making it one of the oldest affiliate programs out there. It’s also one of the most popular, and is used by entrepreneurs around the world to monetize their websites.
Amazon has millions of products to allow you to make money from your content and website traffic. There are over 385 million products on Amazon – so there’s literally something for every business to promote on here.
Watch the Amazon Associates intro video:
The Amazon Associates program is easy to get accepted into, and free to join – which is why it’s a top choice for most beginners looking to monetize their websites. It’s even easier to sign up for this affiliate program if you already have an Amazon account (and who doesn’t?!).
You can sign up to the affiliate program in 14 countries, making it ideal if you plan on attracting local traffic from one of those specific countries. Just make sure when you’re setting up your affiliate links that you’re in the right country setting on Amazon!
The commission schedule from Amazon varies depending on what you’re selling. Amazon also reserves the right to change their fee schedule at random – which can cause serious loss of income if this affiliate program is your main source of monetization.
Amazon’s last major commission changes were back in 2020, when fees were dramatically reduced across most of their products – causing outrage among affiliate marketers.
Make sure you check out the current fee schedule to see how much you can potentially make by linking to various product items in Amazon’s inventory to see if it’s worth your while.
Using the Amazon Affiliate dashboard to manage your account, and creating affiliate links for your content, is super easy with Amazon’s built-in Site Stripe tool.
You can also use the paid WordPress plugin AAWP to make managing everything super seamless between your dashboard and your Amazon affiliate account.
All up, this is one of the best and easiest affiliate programs for beginners to join and get the hang of affiliate marketing.
URL: Amazon Associates
Cookie duration: 24 hours
Commission rates: 1% to 10% (these rates can change whenever Amazon feels like it)
Payment threshold: $10
Aweber is a popular email marketing tool that’s been around for the past 20 years. Their affiliate program is simple and free to sign up for – and they have marketing assets you can use to promote their software.
The support from Aweber is second to none, and this applies whether you’re a customer that uses their software, or just an affiliate promoter of their tool.
URL: Aweber Advocates Referral Program
Cookie duration: a generous 365 days!
Commission rates: from 30% to 50% commission
Payment threshold: $30 for affiliates in the USA, and $50 for affiliates outside the USA
Awin is an affiliate network formed as the result of two other affiliate networks (Zanox and Affilinet) merging in 2017. Awin also owns ShareASale (which we’ll talk about later on), but these two affiliate networks run independently of one another, with their own separate merchants on each platform. So if you want to sign up for both of those, you can absolutely do that.
Awin claims to be the largest affiliate network, comprising over 16,000 merchants (including big names like Etsy, Emirates, and Under Armour) and 225,000 affiliate marketers. They cover 20 countries worldwide, which helps if you’re looking to attract traffic from specific locations by promoting local companies.
Last year, Awin’s affiliates earned a total of $1 billion in commission payments. So if you want in on that, it’s worth your while taking a look at what the platform offers.
The great thing about Awin, apart from its extensive opportunities to promote thousands of big name businesses and products, is that they pay fast, their platform is easy to use, and their support team is excellent.
It’s simple to generate the trackable links you need for your affiliate marketing content – and you’ll get paid for any validated transactions regardless of when Awin is paid by the advertiser, with any programs that offer accelerated payments on this platform. In short, you won’t be waiting months for commission payments like you do with other programs!
URL: Awin Affiliates
Bluehost is popular, affordable web hosting provider that is used by over 2 million websites around the world.
Their affiliate program is free to join, and it’s very popular for both beginner affiliates and seasoned professionals.
The reason it’s so popular is that they have generous commission rates – with many affiliates making thousands of dollars a month promoting Bluehost’s web hosting services.
URL: Bluehost Affiliates
Cookie Duration: 90 days
Payout threshold: You’ll get paid when your commissions reach $100
Commissions: From $65 to $125
Buzzsprout is a podcast hosting platform with over 100,000 subscribers. Their affiliate program is free and easy to sign up for, with a generous commission plan and a helpful support team if you need assistance at any time.
Best of all, their cookies never expire – so even if someone clicks your affiliate link and doesn’t sign up for a paid plan until one or two years later – you still get paid for this sign up!
Here’s how to sign up to Buzzsprout and get your affiliate code:
- Go to the website and sign up for your Buzzsprout Account
- Log in and go to Monetization > Affiliate Marketplace
- Scroll down and click Become an Affiliate next to Buzzsprout
- Read the terms and enter your PayPal email address
- Copy your Affiliate Code and use it to refer people to Buzzsprout
Cookie Duration: your cookies never expire, and you’ll be paid for a referral even if somebody takes years to upgrade to a paid account.
Payout threshold: $50
Commission plans: 20% recurring lifetime commission for all paid customers who sign up through your link, and a one-off payment of $25 for every customer you send to Buzzsprout through your link
Canva is one of the most popular free graphic design platforms in the world, and now has more than 18 million users worldwide.
It’s easy to sign up for, free, and perfect for both beginner and advanced affiliate marketers. Canva also provides plenty of marketing tools and assets to help you promote their software and maximize your commission payments.
If you need assistance, Canva’s support team is on hand 24 hours a day with live chat to help you.
Cookie Duration: 30 days
Payout threshold: $50
Commission plans: up to 80% of any plan than a customer signs up to through your link (around $36 for a Canva Pro plan)
CJ Affiliate Program
CJ Network (also known as Commission Junction), is one of the big affiliate network players. They’ve been around for over 20 years and have partnerships with some of the largest brands in the world, including GoPro, Zappos, Walgreens, Trip Advisor, Disney, Sears, Verizon, and Samsung. In addition, there are over 2,500 other brands you can promote via the CJ affiliates network.
Yearly payouts to affiliates through this network total almost $2 billion. It’s a great network to start your affiliate marketing journey, as it’s free to join and relatively simple to get approved, and there are products and services to suit pretty much every niche on here.
The dashboard lets you clearly see the metrics for each affiliate program inside the network, so you can instantly see whether it’s worth your time to promote a product or service, or not. This takes a lot of the guesswork out of choosing merchants to promote, and ensures you’re not wasting your time creating content that won’t pay you a decent commission.
The CJ Affiliate dashboard is easy to navigate and it’s simple to keep track of your clicks and payouts. The support team is awesome, and there are plenty of tutorials to help you get started quickly.
Once you’ve signed up, you’ll need to search through the merchants in the CJ network and apply directly to each of them. Some will approve you instantly, but it may take a while for others to give you the green lilght to promote their products.
URL: CJ Affiliate Program
Cookie Duration: 30 days
Payout threshold: You’ll get paid once you reach $50 in commissions, and payouts are monthly
Commission plans: varies per product/merchant that you’re promoting
Clickbank has affiliates in over 200 countries, and have been around since 1998 – making them one of the oldest affiliate marketing programs online.
Most of the merchants on this platform sell digital products, but there are some physical products on here too. So if you’re going to be promoting and selling digital products as part of your affiliate business, this is a great place to start.
The ClickBank marketplace is free to join, and has thousands of products to choose from. Just make sure you do your due diligence about which ones look legit, and how much commission you’ll get paid for promoting each one.
There are a lot of scammy looking products on here (e.g. weight loss and financial digital products) so it can take a while to find top selling products with great reviews. Many people avoid ClickBank for this reason, but if you do some digging, there are great things to promote in here.
Although the interface looks a little outdated, it’s easy to use and most of the hard selling is done for you by the landing pages and sales pages that each merchant uses to promote their products. This makes it relatively easy to turn your affiliate clicks into cash.
Payout threshold: You’ll get paid once you reach $50 in commissions, and payouts are Net 60
Commissions: amounts vary between products, but the default amount is 25% of any product. Top tier programs can earn you $50 per sale.
Click funnels lets anyone build functional sales funnels to promote their business and website. Affiliates can earn generous commissions on all of the offers that Click funnels promotes – and they often have challenges where you can earn a chunky $100 commission for each referral.
The affiliate program is free to join, and they have great support for their affiliate members
URL: Clickfunnels Affiliate Program
Cookie Duration: 30 days
Payout threshold: you’ll get paid when commissions reach $100, and commissions are paid out monthly
Commission: up to 40%
Commission Factory partners with some of the world’s largest brands, including Shaver Shop, Under Armour, Skechers, Asics, and Lululemon. With 600 partners, they generate over $25 million AUD in affiliate sales per month.
Their platform is free to join, easy to use, and they have account managers who are there to help if you have any questions. The dashboard tracks your clicks and payments in real time, so you can see instantly what your best performing content is.
As an affiliate, you’ll get paid weekly for any approved commissions – and you can choose to get paid via PayPal, cheque, bank transfer, or prepaid Mastercard. This company is global and they support 150 payout currencies around the world.
URL: Commission Factory Affiliates
Payment threshold: $50 AUD (Australian Dollars)
Commissions: vary for each brand
Convertkit is one of the world’s most popular email marketing and automation tools for creators.
This is an in-house affiliate program, which is endorsed by top blogger Pat Flynn. The program is free and easy to join, and you’ll get a bunch of promotional material and training tutorials to help you get started.
Anyone can join the Convertkit program, which makes it a perfect option for beginner marketers. Even better, the commissions on this program are recurring. This means you get a 30% commission every month for every person who signs for a plan through your affiliate link. Which is pretty awesome!
URL: Convertkit Affiliate Program
Commission plan: 30% commission, paid monthly for as long as every customer that uses your link has a paid account with Convertkit!
Cookie Duration: 60 days
eBay Partner Network
Everyone knows what eBay is, but do you know they have their own eBay affiliate program? This is managed in-house by eBay, so they have their own affiliate managers and support to help you grow your business.
The eBay Partner Network is free to join, with over a billion products to promote. It’s a great place for beginners to start out with, and people typically begin by pairing this program with an Amazon affiliate program membership to get their sales rolling.
URL: eBay Partner Network
Payment threshold: $10, paid out after 21 days
Cookie duration: 24 hours
Commission: varies depending on products – but can be up to 70% of a product sale
Elegant Themes makes some of the best and most widely used WordPress themes (including Divi). They’re also responsible for other products like Bloom for email marketing and Monarch for social media sharing.
Elegant Themes has over 30,000 affiliates, and pays them a total of more than $3 million every year.
It’s a great program for beginners, as it’s free to join and pays very well. You’ll receive 50% of every purchase that someone makes after clicking your affiliate link.
URL: Elegant Themes Affiliate Program
Commissions: 50% commission on every sale through your link
Cookie Duration: 180 days
Payout threshold: $200
Envato Market is the world’s largest creative market place. It sells millions of digital products every year. As an affiliate, it’s the perfect place for beginners to start marketing, and it’s ideal for bloggers, influencers, YouTubers, authors, and TikTokers
Envato affiliates earn a combined total of more than $3 million per year. It’s free to join, even if you’re brand new. The payout commissions are generous – and if you refer one annual subscription per day through your affiliate link, you could earn $3,600 every month!
URL: Envato Affiliates
Commissions: $60 to $120 per sale
Cookie Duration: 30 days
Yep. Etsy has their own affiliate marketing program too. The Etsy affiliate program is perfect if you’re a beginner that will be creating content around handmade goods, crafts, and artists – although there are now more commercial products for sale on this platform too.
To make money with affiliate links here, you’ll just create links via your affiliate dashboard on Etsy and use them on your site to promote the items. If someone clicks your link and makes a purchase you’ll earn 4% of that amount. Although this is a small commission fee, it will add up if you’re getting enough traffic clickin on your links.
URL: Etsy Affiliates
Cookie duration: 30 days
Payment threshold: $50, paid out after 30 days
Fiverr Affiliate Network
Fiverr is a great program to join for beginners. You can join from within CJ Affiliates too, but I recommend you sign up directly with the Fiverr platform so you can appreciate their great, user friendly dashboard. It’s free, fast, and easy to sign up with here too.
With your Fiverr affiliate links you can easily promote services like graphic design, writing, marketing, animation, videos, music, lifestyle, and more. It’s one of the highest-paying affiliate programs available, so if you can find a way to sign up and promote services that are relevant to your business – you stand a chance to make some very good money on here as an affiliate.
Fiver also lets you promote their range of “Learn from Fiverr” courses – where you stand to get paid 30% of each sale that’s made through your affiliate links.
Payment threshold: $100, paid out after 30 days
Commissions: up to $150
FlexOffers is an affiliate network that can provide you with a wide range of top companies to promote, including Macy’s, Hulu, Walgreens, McAfee, AT&T, Kohl’s, and more. They have around 12,000 advertising partners, with 500 of these being premium merchants.
FlexOffers also has a FlexShare program, where you can get paid for referring other people to the FlexOffers program.
The sign up process is relatively easy and free – but FlexOffers can be a little picky about who they sign up, so make sure your website looks legit, not spammy, and that you have a bit of content online already before you start the application process. Once you’re in, it’s easy to create links and deep links to promote the merchants in this affiliate network.
Payment threshold: $25 – with Net 60 payouts
Commissions: vary depending on the product/merchant
GetResponse is an all-in-one marketing software platform that’s well known for its email marketing and automation features.
It has two affiliate programs to choose from, one where you get 33% recurring commission from sales every month, and the other where you receive $100 up front commission per sale.
GetResponse is simple and free to sign up for, and they give you all the tools, content, and guides you need to create solid affiliate campaigns.
URL: GetResponse Affiliate Program
Commissions: $100 per sale or recurring commissions of 33% per month for every sale referred through your affiliate link
Cookie duration: 120 days
HostGator is another web hosting provider with a pretty generous affiliate program that beginners can apply for. The more leads you send to HostGator through your affiliate links every month, the more you will get paid for each lead.
This affiliate program is simple to sign up for, and the support team is super helpful if you have questions about their marketing or tiered affiliate commission payouts. The earning potential as a HostGator Affiliate is definitely worth considering if web hosting is in your niche!
URL: HostGator Affiliate Program
Commission plan: up to $150 per sign up
Cookie duration: 60 days
Payout threshold: $100
Impact Marketplace (formerly known as Impact Radius) is another leading affiliate marketing network. It’s founders also created Commission Junction mentioned above. You’ll find over 2,500 big name partner brands to promote within this network, including Airbnb, Adidas, L’oreal, Lenovo, and HSBC.
It’s free and simple to sign up as an affiliate for this network, and you’ll find the dashboard is easy to use, and it’s easy to track your clicks and payments.
As a beginner, it’s awesome that you can also see at a glance which advertisers will approve you immediately, which means you can start promoting them straight away. You can choose from several ways to get paid, including PayPal and bank transfer.
URL: Impact Affiliate Partners
Commissions: Vary by merchant/product
Payment threshold: $25
Invideo is an awesome online video editor that runs an in-house affiliate program. As a beginner, you’ll find it simple to sign up for this program, and you can earn up to $40 per sale through your affiliate link.
URL: Invideo Affiliates
Commissions: 50% of any sale made through your link
Cookie duration: 120 days
Kinsta WordPress Hosting
Kinsta is another highly regarded WordPress hosting provider, where you can earn…wait for it….up to $500 PLUS 10% monthly recurring commissions. The earning potential here is solid – for example, if you refer 5 new subscriptions for a business plan each month, you can look forward to $1,350 passive income every month after one year. Not bad, right?
Commissions: up to $500 – with 10% monthly recurring commissions
Payouts: Once you’ve earned $50 in affiliate commissions
Cookie duration: 60 days
Landingi is a very cool landing page builder for websites and marketing that’s easy to use and loved by thousands of entrepreneurs and business owners around the world.
The Landingi affiliate marketing program is free and simple to join, and you’ll get marketing materials to make your promotions a lot easier.
URL: Landingi Affiliate Program
Commission plan: 25% recurring commission on every sale or renewal
Cookie duration: 90 days
Payouts: once your commissions reach $25
Leadpages Affiliate Partner Program
Leadpages lets business owners and entrepreneurs easily create websites, landing pages, pop-ups, and alert bars to grow their business and improve their marketing efforts.
The affiliate program lets you earn commissions by promoting Leadpages’ landing page and website builder to your readers and audience.
They offer generous 50% recurring commissions on any sales that are made through your affiliate link. This includes plan renewals, upgrades, and even one-time purchases – and you get paid for as long as your referrals remain paying customers.
URL: Leadpages Affiliate Program
Commissions: up to 50% in recurring payments
Cookie Duration: 30 days
LinkConnector is one of the lesse known affiliate marketing networks. However, their advertising partners include some pretty impressive names like Levis, Dockers, and Reebok – so it’s worth giving them a look!
Once you’ve been approved, you’ll find a range of digital and physical products to promote. You don’t need custom links due to the “naked” linking function which lets you simply point traffic to the advertiser’s domain.
There are only around 400 advertisers in this network – which is relatively small, but it makes it very easy to skim through these and pick and choose the ones that will work for you.
URL: LinkConnector Affiliate Program
Commissions: vary per merchant, and you’ll get paid once your commissions reach $100
MaxBounty has been around since 2004, and has a focus on CPA offers. This means that as an affiliate, you get paid when someone clicks through your affiliate link and takes a specific action (for example, completing a form online, or installing some software).
Don’t be put off by this, as it can actually be pretty lucrative – even more so than making a sale on some of the other other affiliate programs for beginners mentioned here. And if you earn over $1,000 within your first 90 days of being an affiliate – you’ll receive a cash bonus of $1,000. Which is a pretty sweet deal.
This network has over 2,000 promotions you can market, including niches like dieting, dating, finance, and other popular topics.
This network is a little annoying and confusing to sign up for, and their support could be better, but other that that – this network is well worth investigating.
URL: MaxBounty Affiliate Program
Payments: you’ll get paid once your commissions reach $50. Commissions vary depending on the products you’re promoting.
Moosend is another email marketing automation platform. It’s easy to become an affiliate here. There’s no formal approval process, and you don’t need to be a Moosend customer either.
This company has a ton of marketing materials you can use for promotion, and the support team is excellent – with dedicated account managers on hand to help you.
As an affiliate, you can get ready-made marketing materials, a dedicated account manager, and additional commissions every time your referrals upgrade their plan.
URL: Moosend Affiliate Program
Commissions: 30% recurring commissions, paid out monthly after your commissions reach $25
Cookie duration: 90 Days
NameCheap is one of the leading providers of domain names and website hosting.
You can join the NameCheap affiliate program under the CJ network, Impact, or Shareasale. The commission tiers vary depending what customers sign up for through your link, but you can earn up to 50% commission on some items.
It’s simple to put a NameCheap affiliate link on your site to start generating commissions. You’ll also get access to banners and text links with great referral offers. The support team here is great, and payouts are reliable with a variety of payout methods to choose from.
URL: NameCheap Affiliate Program
Cookie duration: 30 days
Payout threshold: you’ll get paid once your commissions reach $50
PepperJam is a lesser-known affiliate network that was acquired by eBay in 2009, and has recently been acquired again by Partnerize.
In their advertiser network, they partner with big guns like Orion, Lindt, Puma, Nordstrom, and a ton of other niche brands – making this a solid choice for beginner affiliate marketers and pros alike. They also have a ton of useful resources to get you started in your affiliate marketing journey.
URL: PepperJam Publishers & Influencers
Payment threshold: You’ll get paid when your commissions reach $25
Printful is one of the most popular print on demand platforms. It lets users set up print on demand drop shipping and ecommerce stores, so that the store owners don’t need to hold any physical stock. Customers can print t-shirts, tote bags, hoodies, and over 200 other custom products online.
This affiliate program is free and fast to join, and it’s perfect for beginner and pro bloggers and influencers alike.
URL: Printful Affiliate Program
Commissions: 10% commission on every sale – you’ll get paid once your commissions reach $25
Cookie duration: 30 days
Rakuten Affiliate Network
The Rakuten affiliate network is a monster, and they’ve been around since 2005. Their merchants cover everything from gifts to electronics, and they have over 1,000 merchants in their network.
Because Rakuten is a serious player in the affiliate business overseas, it can take a little while to get approved as an affiliate for this network. Other than that, it’s free and simple to apply.
But once you do – it can be a great asset in your affiliate marketing arsenal – as most beginner affiliates will completely overlook this when they’re looking at networks to join.
URL: Rakuten affiliate program
Payment threshold: $50 – and you’ll get paid every 60 days once your commissions reach this amount
Commissions: Vary depending on the merchant
Refersion is another affiliate network. They boast a huge 17,000 partner advertisers – which means there is literally something for everyone to promote in here.
It’s simple to sign up, and you’ll even get a weekly newsletter telling you about new merchants that have joined the network so you can start promoting them.
Commission: varies depending on the merchant
Sellfy is an ecommerce platform where people can sell digital and physical products from a centralized place. For every new user who signs up for a paid Sellfy plan using your affiliate link, you’ll get a 25% lifetime commission.
It’s free and simple to sign up, and you’ll get an affiliate link which you can use to start promoting Sellfy’s plans to your audience. Creators have been able to make a combined total of over $50 million with the Sellfy platform.
Commissions: 25% lifetime commission. You’ll start getting paid out once your commissions reach $100
Cookie duration: 90 days
SEMrush is one of the global leaders in keyword research, link building, and marketing. It’s super simple to apply for this, as it’s an automated system, so you’ll automatically be accepted as an affiliate.
This company provides marketing assets for its affiliates in five languages (Spanish, English, German, French, and Russian) making it perfect for a wide range of countries and audiences.
URL: SEMrush Affiliate Program
Commissions: $200 for every new sale. You’ll get paid once your commissions reach $50
Cookie duration: 120 days
ShareASale Affiliate Program
ShareASale is one of the biggest (and most profitable) affiliate marketing programs out there. There are over 16,550 merchants on this platform, and the main focus of this program is advertisers who are small and profitable, not just big name brands. This means the 225,000 affiliates who are affiliate members of ShareASale have a ton of companies and products to promote – and it’s well worth their time to do so.
Some of these merchants can pay out $300 commission per sale, so this platform should definitely be on your radar as a beginner affiliate marketer. It’s free and simple to sign up. You’ll generally get approved quite quickly, and payouts are reliable and regular.
In your dashboard, you’ll be able to see where every affiliate program within this network sits. These PowerRank metrics make it super easy to see which products and services will give you the biggest bank for your buck if you decide to promote them to your audience.
URL: ShareASale Affiliate Program
Payment threshold: $50 – and payments are made monthly
Commissions: vary depending on the advertiser
Payment threshold: a very achievable $10
Shopify is one of the world’s best ecommerce platforms, used by over 1 million businesses to sell products and services around the world.
As you’d expect, the Shopify affiliate experience is top notch too. It’s free to join, takes 14 days to get approved in most cases, and offers great commission rates, support, and marketing resources to help you grow your own affiliate marketing business.
When you become an affiliate, you’ll get a dedicated affiliate manager, access to tutorials and training, and awesome discounts on Shopify’s tools to help your business grow.
You’ll be able to use your affiliate link to push your audience to blogs, video tutorials, webinars, and funnels developed by Shopify to increase your conversion rates and affiliate earnings.
Although you can only get paid with PayPal as an affiliate with this program, Shopify’s payments are regular, and always paid out five business days after the 15th day of the month. For any commission credits created between the 16th to and including the last day of the month, your payouts will occur five business days after the last day of the month.
If your commission balance is below $25 in a calendar month, then it will be held over until the next payout period.
Commission plan: from $58 to a whopping $2000 (not a typo!) per sale
Cookie duration: 30 days
Payout threshold: $25
SiteGround is a website hosting provider that hosts over 2 million websites worldwide, and counting. Their affiliate program is highly regarded by its 60,000+ affiliates due to the generous commission rates and quick payouts.
URL: Siteground Affiliate Program
Commissions: there’s a tiered structure which goes up to $100 per sale (and above for over 21 sales per month). No minimum payout threshold.
Cookie duration: 60 days
Payments: every 30 days
Skimlinks is a fantastic solution for affiliate marketers, especially if you’re a beginner. It’s used by over 60,000 bloggers, and also top publishers in the online world, like Huffington Post and Conde Nast.
You can insert links manually in your content, or Skimlinks can create automatic links in your content – whichever you prefer.
URL: Skimlinks Affiliate Program
Commissions: varies depending on each merchant from 1% to 50%+ of any affiliate sale transaction
Cookie duration: varies for each merchant
Payout threshold: Once your affiliate commissions reach $65, you’ll get a payout
Sovrn // Commerce
Sovrn // Commerce was originall known as VigLink. It’s similar to Skimlinks and will insert automatic links in your blog posts via a WordPress plugin, or you can insert them manually yourself. The Chrome extension makes it a breeze to create and insert links.
So if you’re looking for an easy way to monetize your content – look no further.
This affiliate program is free to join, and lets you connect with over 60,000 merchants. You can earn per click or per sale, making this a versatile way for you to earn.
The dashboard for Sovrn allows you to view performance metrics which will help you form a solid content strategy, and give you insights into how to increase your affiliate marketing profits.
Commission: varies depending on each merchant
Tailor Brands is a very cool AI-powered logo design and branding platform.
The platform starts with an automated logo maker and includes a powerful toolbox of websites, domains, design tools, and more – that help people to build a new business from scratch – no design experience needed. There are 20 million people using Tailor Brands – so rest assured, you shouldn’t have any problems getting your audience interested in what it can do.
URL: Tailor Brands Affiliate Program
Commissions: up to $100 for every new customer you refer
Payout threshold: $100 – with payouts made monthly via Tune.com wire transfer
Teachable is another online course creation and teaching platform that’s free to become an affiliate for.
This affiliate program is easy to join, and once you make a sale, you earn recurring commission for as long as that creator uses the Teachable platform. Being as most creators have evergreen online courses on here, this means your earnings can really add up over time.
Many $450 per month on average, and many earn $1,000 or more every month. With a 90-day cookie, you make a 30% commission when anyone purchases a Teachable subscription. Plus, you continue to get the commission as long as they stay on the platform.
URL: Teachable Affiliate Program
Commissions: up to 50% of each sale
Cookie duration: 90 days
Payout threshold: $50
ThemeIsle is responsible for 20+ of the world’s most popular WordPress themes, including Neve and Hestia. Over 470,000 websites are currently using themes from this platform to build and grow their businesses.
As an affiliate of ThemeIsle, you get a dedicated account manager, and you’ll have a ton of promotional assets like banners and email templates to help you get the most commissions from your affiliate links.
It’s simple to sign up, and as this affiliate program is managed by ShareASale, you know that it’s legit and you’ll be paid on time, and paid well for the customers you send across with your affiliate links.
URL: ThemeIsle Affiliate Program
Commissions: 55% from every sale through your affiliate link, plus performance incentives
Cookie duration: a generous 365 days
Payout threshold: you’ll get paid when your commissions reach $100
Payments: every 30 days
Thinkific is a popular online course creation platform similar to Teachable that we mentioned above.
The sign-up process for this affiliate program is simple and free. Thinkific uses a third-party platform called PartnerStack to manage their affiliates, so don’t be alarmed when you’re taken off site to sign up. Most affiliates are approved in 2-3 days, then you can start promoting using the exclusive affiliate promo materials that Thinkific provides – or by creating your own content.
Thinkific is perfect for beginner affiliates, especially if your audience consists of DIY content creators, entrepreneurs, or business owner that want to create education content, or online courses. The payouts are pretty generous for this program too.
URL: Thinkific Affiliate Program
Commission plan: Up to $1700 per referral per year! You’ll also get 30% recurring commission on all monthly or annual paid plans for as long as a new subscriber is paying for a Thinkific account.
Cookie Duration: 90 days
Travelpayouts is a great affiliate program for beginners in the travel and tourism niches. Like some of the other programs mentioned above, this is a CPA (cost per action) affiliate network. This means you’ll earn money every time a person clicks on your affiliate link and buys a plane ticket, books a hotel stay, or makes any other purchase on the other side of your link.
This network partners with travel and holiday giants TripAdvisor, GetYourGuide, Booking.com, RentalCars, and over 60 other top global brands. It’s free and easy to sign up, and the support team guarantees to answer 99% of all questions within an hour.
The Travelpayouts dashboard is easy to navigate, and you’ll get all the tools you need to help promote their travel partners, including widgets, deep links, Mobile SDK, API, a WordPress plugin for your blog, and more.
I would absolutely recommend that you join this affiliate network if your niche is in the travel industry – as there are tons of opportunities to create engaging content and make some money at the time with this platform.
Travelpayouts collects all your affiliate earnings across its merchant network, and pays them out together once a month. One affiliate made $90,135 in a single month with this network – so there is a huge opportunity here to get paid extremely well for your affiliate marketing efforts!
URL: Travelpayouts Affiliate Program
Commissions: up to 25% of any sale
Payout threshold: $50 if you want to be paid via PayPal, or $500 if you want to be paid via a bank transfer
Udemy is one of the world’s leading online learning platforms, with a huge selection of courses that you can promote to your audience.
The Udemy affiliate program is run through Linkshare. It’s simple and free to sign up to, and most new accounts are approved in 3 to 4 days. Once you’re an affiliate, you’ll get access to all the bells and whistles including a dedicated affiliate manager and tons of promotional assets to help you drive clicks through your affiliate links.
Commissions: 15% baseline commission, with performance increases as you refer more paying customers
Cookie duration: 7 days. This is short, but has the benefit of not being product-specific. So if a customer clicks on your link to a specific course, then decides to buy another course instead – you still get commission for this.
Payout threshold: $50 – and you can get paid via PayPal, check, or bank deposit. Your payouts will occur 30 days after a sale has cleared the 30-day refund period that customers are entitled to on their purchase.
Weebly is a free website builder that helps people easily create professional websites, ecommerce stores, and blogs with no design or coding experience needed.
This affiliate program run through the ShareASale network that we mentioned above. It’s free and easy to sign up. You can opt to get paid with check, Payoneer, or bank deposit.
Weebly offers $60+ EPC rates, which is great for beginners and experienced affiliates to make some good money. This means that an average click through to a sale on your affiliate link will earn you $60. Weebly also runs regular bonus opportunities, so you can increase your earning potential.
Commissions: 30% on every sale
Cookie duration: 120 days
Payout threshold: you’ll get paid once your commissions reach $50, and you get paid monthly
Webinar Jam is a platform used by more than 50,000 businesses to host webinars. Their cloud broadcasting technology allows a business to reach up to 5,000 webinar attendees at one time – without crashing anything. Plus, businesses can have the flexibility of up to 6 presenters on one webinar who can share their knowledge with the audience.
At the time of writing, Webinar Jam’s affiliate program was being overhauled – so I’m guessing it will come back even better than it was before. You can get on the waitlist here.
URL: Webinar Jam Affiliate program
Wix is one of the original free website building platforms. You can self host and build your own blog, website, or ecommerce store here. It’s a super popular platform, and is used by over 200 million people worldwide to create online businesses.
Wix manages its own affiliate program in-house. Sign up is free and fast, and you’ll get access to a clean dashboard interface to track your clicks and payouts. You’ll also get a ton of marketing assets to help you promote Wix’s services and products.
Commissions: $100 per sale
Cookie duration: 30 days
WP Engine is another web hosting platform. You can promote this platform itself, and you can use your affiliate links here to promote themes from Genesis Pro and StudioPress.
Again, sign up is easy and free, and you’ll get a dedicated account manager to help you with your affiliate marketing if you need it.
WP Engine grabbed the Pinnacle Award winner for Merchant of the Year and the ShareASale Top 100 PowerRank Program – so their affiliate program has some hefty endorsements behind it.
Plus – their commission structure is pretty awesome, and gives you progressively higher payouts the more customers you refer to the WP Engine platform. Even if you refer 5 customers a month, you’ll get extra bonus commissions.
And if you can refer 60 customers a month? You stand to make an impressive $15,475. Not bad for a month’s passive income!
URL: WP Engine Affiliate Program
Commissions: $200 or 100% of first month payment for WP Engine and Genesis Pro sales, and 35% of StudioPress theme sales
Cookie duration: You’ll get credit for all WP Engine referrals made within 180 days, or 60 days for StudioPress theme sales.
Payout threshold: $100
Best Affiliate Programs For Beginners – FAQs
When you’re just starting out in the world of affiliate marketing, you’re bound to have a ton of questions. I’ve endeavored to answer the main ones here for you:
What Is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a business model in which you earn commissions by selling other people’s products.
What Is An Affiliate Program?
Affiliate programs are offered by product or service providers to increase their own sales, while helping their promoters earn money at the same time.
How Do Affiliate Programs Work?
Companies will either operate an affiliate program by themselves, or join an affiliate network that will manage their affiliate members and payouts for them.
What’s The Difference Between Affiliate Programs And Affiliate Networks?
In the above list of best affiliate programs for beginners, you’ll notice that I mention affiliate programs and affiliate networks. These terms are often used interchangeably – but they are quite different.
Affiliate programs are typically run in-house by the company/creator of the product or service. Bluehost is an example of this, as is the Shopify program.
Affiliate networks, on the other hand, manage the affiliate programs of multiple merchantss and companies in one place. So when you join one affiliate network, you’ll get access to hundreds, or even thousands of brands that you can promote and earn money from. ShareASale and CJ Affiliates are examples of this.
How To Join An Affiliate Program Or Network
To join an affiliate network or affiliate program, you simply need to apply to the individulal program on a company’s website, or sign up on the page of an affiliate network. For individual, in-house programs, you’ll typically find a link in the footer section of their website to guide you through the process.
What Is The Most Profitable Affiliate Program?
There’s no right answer for this. We’ve included some of the best known and popular affiliate programs that pay well on our list, but there’s no point in promoting these if they don’t align with your own business, content, and audience. The most profitable program is the one that resonates with your audience, and generates customers who are interested in what you’re promoting.
Does eBay Have An Affiliate Program?
Yes they do – we’ve mentioned the ebay Affiliate Partnership in our list above.
How Do You Become An Amazon Affiliate?
Amazon is mentioned in our list above, and it’s easy for beginners to sign up.
Click this link to learn more and sign up.
What Are The Best Affiliate Programs For Beginners Without A Website?
Affiliate networks like Clickbank and ShareASale are great places to start promoting affiliate offers if you don’t have a website. You can promote products via email, social media, forums, and paid ad promotions.
However – having your own website is the best way to start out with affiliate marketing. The content you create is yours, and you’re not reliant on social media algorithms, or the risk of being kicked off platforms like Reddit, or banned from platforms like Instagram or Facebook for promotions.
How Can You Find Out If A Merchant Has An Affiliate Program?
Start by doing a Google search on “[company] affiliate” (e.g. type into search “Shopify affiliate”). This usually takes you straight to a brand’s affiliate sign up page if they have one.
Should I Pay To Join An Affiliate Program?
The answer to this is ….NO! Any reputable, trustworthy affiliate program or network will NOT ask you to pay to join.
Best Books On Affiliate Marketing
There are a ton of books out there on how to start and succeed with affiliate marketing. And there’s nothing quite like the rush of seeing your hard work turn into your very first affiliate commission (even if it’s only $1.48 from someone randomly buying a tie rack and some ant killer through one of your affiliate links – true story!)
Here’s a few of our favourite books to get you started on your affiliate marketing journey.
Conclusion – The Best Affiliate Programs For Beginners
The possibilities and opportunities for affiliate marketing are endless. But to succeed, you’ll need to be strategic about which programs you sign up for. We’ve only scratched the surface of the best affiliate marketing programs for beginners, but these are our top picks, and they’re the ones we use and recommend to get niche content sites off the ground quickly.
It’s important that you keep in mind that not all of the high paying affiliate sites will be right for you. Some of the lower paying ones you come across might be a perfect fit, as they align with the subject you’re writing about.
Start slowly with a handful of affiliate sites, and make sure you track which ones you sign up for (and get accepted into) with something like Google Sheets or ClickUp.
Ultimately, the success of whichever affiliate marketing programs you sign up for will depend on the strength of your content, the buyer intent of whoever is reading, and how you drive traffic to your website.
Make sure you only sign up for affiliate products and services you use or highly recommend. Shilling sketchy products for a few cents in commission isn’t good for your readers – or for your business. But growing an audience that knows, likes, and trusts you? That’s a recipe for affiliate success.
And if you’ve read through this and decided that affiliate marketing isn’t right for you – you could always become a freelance copywriter….or maybe sell some frisky feet pics for some extra income!
Rachael is a full-time digital nomad and freelance copywriter for B2B and SaaS companies. She’s worked with brands like Unbounce, Biteable, Datacom, Viddyoze, and Owler.