Everyone dreams of monetizing their blog or social media accounts. Nowadays, you have multiple ways of doing this, from displaying ads to affiliate marketing and paid articles or posts.
The best way to do it is affiliate marketing because it allows you to generate revenue from a blog post even years after publication. The only problem is that there are so many affiliate programs available that you don’t know which one to use.
Keep reading to find out which are the best platforms right now. And if none of these are suitable for your niche, we’ll show you the most important criteria when selecting an affiliate platform, so you can quickly find the best one for your needs.
How to Choose the Best Affiliate Program for You
There are numerous affiliate programs available on the Internet right now. But how do you pick the best one for you? Here are some tips to help you make the right pick and successfully monetize your blog and social media channels.
The first thing you need to consider is the reputation of the affiliate platform. Luckily, you can find numerous platforms with a good reputation that have been around for 15+ years.
If you have a blog about cooking, you can’t promote car accessories. You need to make sure that the platform has products relevant to your niche. Otherwise, your visitors won’t make a single purchase.
Look for an affiliate program that offers at least 4% commissions. Stay away from platforms that offer less or that have capped commissions. You’ll spend a lot of time promoting the products, so you want to make sure that your effort is well rewarded.
Vendor and product reputation
One last thing to consider is the reputation of the product and the vendor. You don’t want to associate your website with shady products. Your audience will never buy these products and, even worse, they’ll stop visiting your website altogether.
Best Affiliate Programs You Can Sign up for
Now that you know how to pick a platform, here are some of the best affiliate programs that you can find right now. Our selection only includes reputable platforms that offer good commission rates, so all you have to do is find the best for your niche.
ShareASale is one of the largest and oldest affiliate networks, with a history of about two decades, so you don’t have to worry about the program’s reputation. It features a huge number of merchants across 40+ categories. No matter what niche you cover, you’ll most likely find a merchant to promote.
There are two types of marketing models available:
- Pay-per-lead – where you earn commissions for every website visitor that uses your affiliate link
- Pay-per-sale – you earn commissions when a visitor that you referred buys a product.
You can use both referral links and banners to promote the selected merchants.
Applying for an affiliate account is pretty straightforward, but you will need to own a website to qualify.
ShareASale commissions are paid monthly (if you pass the $50 threshold) and earnings are displayed in real-time.
The only downside of ShareASale is when it comes to payments. The only available methods are direct payments or physical checks. Paypal payments are not available.
Pros: easy to use, huge number of merchants, many industries.
Cons: doesn’t offer PayPal as a payment option.
This is probably the best affiliate program for beginners that you can find right now. Amazon is a vast marketplace where you can find millions of products to promote.
Signing up for the Amazon Associates program is simple. You can do it either if you have a blog or just a social media account – although, in this care, the program is called Amazon Influencer.
What’s great about Amazon’s affiliate program is that you get commissions for everything they buy after your visitor clicks on your referral links. Commissions range from 1% to 10%, but for the majority of products, you’ll get 3% or 4%.
Earning commission from every sale is great, but there is a downside. Your cookies expire after 24 hours, meaning that you won’t earn anything if the visitor returns after a day to make the purchase.
With Amazon Associates, commissions are paid out monthly, but you need a minimum balance of $100. The payment options are limited: bank transfer, cheque, or Amazon gift card.
Pros: easy to use, earn commissions for every purchase – not just promoted products, up to 10% commissions.
Cons: cookies last only 24 hours, limited payment options.
eBay Partner Network
Like Amazon, eBay offers the possibility to promote millions of products on the popular listing website. With over a billion listings, there isn’t a more diverse marketplace than eBay, so finding a few items to promote shouldn’t be a problem.
The signup process is simple here, too, and you can use both your website and social media accounts to earn commissions.
Since eBay is an auction website, you have 2 ways of earning commissions from the traffic referred:
- For ‘Buy it Now’ purchases – must be made within 24 hours; otherwise, the cookie expires;
- For auction purchases – the auction must close within 10 days.
Depending on the product category, you can earn 1% to 4% commissions. Unfortunately, there is a commission cap of $100. This means that no matter how expensive the item is (a house, for example), you won’t get more than $100.
Payments are made monthly, on the 10th, via PayPal or Electronic Funds Transfer. The payout threshold is $10.
Pros: variety of products to choose from, double commissions for the first 3 months.
Cons: cookies last only 24 hours, caps on commissions per item.
Rakuten Marketing Affiliates
Rakuten has an affiliate program that is similar to Amazon’s. Rakuten is a Japanese online retail store that sells everything from pet supplies to clothing and electronics. Having such a wide array of products makes it easy to find something in your niche worth promoting.
The signing up process takes a few minutes, although you need to have a website that can pass a simple verification. This is just the first step. If you want to promote a certain brand, you first have to get approval again. After this part, everything else is simple, and you can set up a referral link with just 3 clicks.
Unlike other affiliate programs, this one releases payments every 60 days. The available methods are direct deposits, PayPal, and cheques. You need to earn at least $50 to qualify for a payment.
Pros: variety of products to choose from, payments through PayPal.
Cons: you need to apply for each brand you want to promote, payments every 60 days.
CJ Affiliate Publisher’s Program
CJ Affiliate is another one of those old and well-established platforms. Launched in 1998, the platform has a wide array of brands and industries for you to choose from.
The signing-up process is pretty simple. You’ll have to provide them with some information about your website, including estimated traffic. You also have the ‘Not Launched Yet’ option, but it’s never a good idea to start an affiliate program without some presence online.
The platform has around 3,000 brands to choose from, including some well-established names like Barnes & Noble, Lowe’s, or Zappos.
Finding the right brands to promote is easy, and all it takes is a few minutes to create your affiliate links. Besides these, CJ also gives you the option to create and display banner ads with your chosen products. Lastly, you can even ‘sell’ ad space on your website with the ‘Placements’ option.
Payments are made on the 20th of each month, and the threshold is $50. The available payment methods are bank transfers, cheques, and Payoneer.
Pros: variety of products to choose from, you can ‘sell’ ad space, payment via Payoneer.
Cons: payment via PayPal not available.
Clickbank is a platform similar to ShareASale. It’s been around since 1998 and, like ShareASale, has plenty of products to choose from. Now come the differences. Most of the products available on Clickbank are digital, and you won’t probably recognize most of the brands. Still, you have a good chance of finding a product worth promoting on your website.
Signing up is easy, although only people from a few countries are eligible to open an account. Sorting through all the products on the platform will take some time, especially the first few times. Once you find what you want to promote, creating affiliate links is a straightforward process.
Payments are made biweekly, but it will take another two weeks until the money shows up in your account. The only payment methods you can choose from are direct transfers and cheques. You need to earn only $10 to be eligible for a payment, although you will need to generate 5 sales before you can request your one.
Clickbank also has an education platform where you can learn more about affiliate marketing and how to grow your blog successfully. The biggest downside of this platform is that it has a 90-day money-back guarantee policy which can reduce your earnings substantially.
Pros: very high commissions, 60-day cookies, learning platform.
Cons: available in a limited number of countries, 90-day money-back policy.
Bluehost Affiliate Program
Bluehost is considered one of the best WordPress hosting platforms available. Launched in 2003, the platform currently hosts over 2 million websites.
Unlike with the previous programs on our list, you only have one product to promote: website hosting. Sure, today, there are numerous such programs but what makes Bluehost stand out is that you can earn $65 or even $125 per sale. Moreover, you’ll enjoy high conversion rates, mostly because Bluehost is such a respectable name in the industry.
Signing up for the Bluehost Affiliate Program is fast. All you need is a website (you don’t even have to have many monthly visitors), and you’ll get approved within a few hours.
All you have to do next is either put referral links or banner ads on your website and wait for your audience to start buying.
Bluehost, unlike other platforms, gives you the freedom to choose when to withdraw your earnings. There is only one condition you have to meet first: you must earn $100 in two sales within the first 12 months. Payments are made only via PayPal but don’t worry because Bluehost will cover the transfer fees.
Pros: high earnings per sale, fast approval process.
Cons: your visitors need to be searching for web hosting.
ConvertKit Affiliate Program
Right now, ConvertKit is one of the best email marketing platforms out there. Unlike other companies in the industry, ConvertKit puts a big emphasis on customization. It also allows users to create landing pages that can be quickly added to any WordPress website with the ConvertKit plugin’s help.
Signing up for the ConvertKit program is easy, and the approval process is pretty quick. The only problem you might encounter is finding the affiliate program link on their homepage. It’s pretty well hidden.
The commission rate is 30%, better than other similar affiliate programs. What makes ConvertKit, and all other affiliate programs for subscription-based services great is the fact that, once your visitor makes a buy, you earn commissions every month until he or she unsubscribes.
Payments are released on the 2nd of every month, and there is no threshold. There is also a delay of one month before your commissions are approved to account for any possible refunds.
Pros: recurring commissions, no threshold for withdrawals.
Cons: 30 days confirmation period for commissions.
LeadPages Affiliate Partner Program
Founded in 2012, LeadPages is a powerful marketing tool that lets you create landing pages using a simple drag and drop editor. What makes LeadPages a great tool is the fact that anyone can create landing pages that generate a good number of leads. Monthly plans range from $15 to $48, and clients can first try the tool-free for 14 days, which increases the conversion rate.
To sign up for the LeadPages affiliate program, you will need to have a blog and provide some information about it, including the countries where you want to promote the tool.
LeadPages pays recurring 10% commissions for every purchase one of your referrals makes. This means that you’ll get at least 10% of every monthly or annual plan payment until your referral cancels the subscription. You have the opportunity to earn even 40% or 50% commissions depending on how many customers you bring in every month.
Leadpages offers monthly payouts, but commissions have a 45-day confirmation period in case anyone decides to ask for a refund.
Pros: recurring commissions, high commission rate, 30-day cookies.
Cons: 45 days confirmation period for commissions.
PartnerStack Partner Program
PartnerStack is an affiliate marketplace that focuses on SaaS products. In fact, it is the best-known affiliate program in this niche. Some of the software that you can promote is already popular (Evernote, monday.com, Quickbooks, to name a few), so you shouldn’t have any problems convincing your audience to buy or subscribe to these products, as long as the software is relevant to their needs.
PartnerStack offers you 2 options: become a Certified Partner and earn commissions from referrals or become a Certified Reseller and earn commissions by selling the products yourself.
Commissions vary from software to software. Depending on which one you promote, you can either get a fixed price commission (usually $50 for the first purchase) or 10% – 20% from recurring payments.
Another great thing about PartnerStack is that you can request payments whenever you want, as long as you have at least $25 in your account. The only payment method available is Paypal.
Pros: low payment threshold, request payments anytime.
Cons: PayPal is the only available payment method.
Fiverr Affiliates Program
Fiverr is one of the largest digital services platforms (although if you ask them, they will say they are the largest), with over 11 million users from all around the world. On Fiverr, you can find almost any type of service, from writing to accounting and even genealogy research.
To sign up for this program, all you need is a blog. Once you’re accepted, you can use banners to promote services, as well as Pixels, a tool that only a few other programs have.
The commission structure is a bit complicated. You actually have four commission types to choose from: revenue share (where you get a 30% percentage of Fiverr’s Fees), CPA model (fixed revenue – $25 to $50, depending on service), hybrid ($10CPA + 10% of revenue) and sub-affiliate (10% of what your referred affiliates earn).
Payment can be requested every time you have at least $100 in your account. The available methods are PayPal, bank transfers, Fiverr Revenue Card, and direct deposits (for the US only).
Pros: lifetime sales commissions from every referral.
Cons: low commissions compared to other platforms, higher payment threshold.
Affiliaxe is a great platform for affiliate marketers because it offers many tools that help you successfully promote all the available products. Products and services are divided into niches and countries, and you also get access to a conversion map, which can become a powerful tool if used properly. You can promote already known and respected merchants like Hilton, Qatar Airways, Newegg, Ubisoft, or Avon.
Getting approved on the Affiliaxe platform is pretty difficult. They have a thorough vetting process, and you also have to pay a security deposit of $50. If you get approved, you’ll have access to many useful tools, as well as your very own account manager who will help you generate more earnings.
Affiliaxe is primarily a CPA (Cost per Action) focused platform, meaning that most commissions are fixed rate. You can also earn commissions from referring other marketers to the platform (5% from their first commissions).
Payouts are made biweekly either through PayPal, cheques, bank transfers, or direct deposits. The minimum payment threshold is $100.
Pros: many tools to boost your earnings.
Cons: Hard to get approved, fewer products to promote.
Coinbase Affiliate Program
Crypto is here to stay; there’s no doubt about that, and so are crypto affiliate programs. Coinbase is by far the best-known cryptoeconomy platform, with over 40 million users.
The Coinbase affiliate program offers you the opportunity to earn commissions every time one of your referrals invests in any of the coins available on the platform.
Getting into the Coinbase affiliate program is pretty difficult. They have an acceptance rate of about 20%. But once you’re in, you can start earning big.
On Coinbase, you have a 50% commission rate. In other words, Coinbase is going to split their commission with you 50-50. Given how much money is invested in crypto today, you can easily make some big commissions from every referral. That’s the good news. The bad news is that after 3 months, you won’t earn anything else off of that referral.
Commissions are paid monthly, either through PayPal or bank transfers.
Pros: high commission rates.
Cons: low acceptance rate, you can earn from each referral only 3 months.
Coursera Affiliate Program
When it comes to learning platforms, Coursera is one of the best in the world. With over 1,000 courses and specializations from top universities worldwide, Coursera is the go-to learning platform for people who want to learn anything from digital marketing to personal development.
You need to own a blog or website to be able to sign up for this affiliate program. As soon as you are accepted, you can promote any of the 1,000+ courses on the platform.
Commissions are between 20 and 45%, but, unfortunately, not all purchases are eligible. If someone signs up for a $10,000 Bachelor’s program, you won’t get a commission. Both degrees and MasterTrack certificates are excluded from the affiliate program.
Payments are made monthly via bank transfers of PayPal, and the payout threshold is just $50.
Pros: high commission rate, 30-day cookies.
Cons: not all purchases are eligible for commissions.
MaxBounty Affiliate Network
Unlike most of the programs on this list, MaxBounty is a new player in the affiliate marketing world. By new player, we don’t mean one that has been around for just a few months. MaxBounty has been around since 2004, which makes it almost a decade ‘younger’ than some of the other platforms on our list.
On MaxBounty, you can find anything to promote, including products and services from some established brands like Microsoft, McAfee, Squarespace, or GoDaddy. You have over 2,000 products to choose from, so finding one your audience might need shouldn’t be a problem.
Not everyone can create an account on MaxBounty. Their vetting process is pretty thorough (it even includes a phone call) so prepare to wait for a while until your account is activated.
Unlike other platforms, with MaxBounty, you can earn by promoting both CPA (Cost per Action) and CPS (Cost per Sale) offers. Before you can begin earning from CPAs, you first have to successfully promote at least one CPS offer (generate a sale).
Payments are made on the 15th of every month, and you can choose from any of the following methods: direct deposits, wire transfers, cheques, or Payoneer.
Pros: weekly payouts.
Cons: getting approved is not easy.
Now that you know which are the best affiliate marketing platforms, it’s time to begin monetizing your blog and social media channels. The most important thing to remember is only to promote products that are relevant to your niche. Otherwise, you won’t earn any commission and, even worse, your website visitor numbers will start decreasing.
Pick the right products, and you won’t just earn from your website visitors, but they’ll appreciate your blog even more because you know how to make good recommendations.