How to Find Affiliate Programs for Your Website | The Wise Way

How to Find Affiliate Programs for Your Website

When a beginner marketer asks how to find affiliate programs for their sites I often hear the answer:

Just type in Google ‘[niche/product] + affiliate program’.

And that’s correct, it works. The result of this search will be a list of affiliate programs for that niche or product.

But…

That doesn’t address all the important aspects we, as internet marketers, need to be aware of to start successful affiliate partnerships.

And that’s what I’m going to talk about today. The WISE way to find the best affiliate programs for your website.

These are the topics we’ll cover:

  • Google Searching for Affiliate Programs
  • Affiliate Programs on the Merchants Websites
  • Amazon Associates Program
  • Affiliate Networks and their Multiple Options
  • Should you Apply for All Programs?
  • Reviews on Affiliate Programs
  • Ask Other People’s Opinions
  • Experience the Merchant’s Website
  • Applying and Getting Approved (or not)

 


Google Searching for Affiliate Programs

Let’s just back up a little here because I realize not everyone is familiarized with this process. So I want to make sure you do.

When I say to type ‘[niche/product] + affiliate program’ in Google what I mean is the following.
Let’s say my niche is ‘baby food’ so I’ll just type in:

baby food affiliate program

And here’s the result I get:

Google search results for 'baby food affiliate program'

As you can see, a lot of affiliate programs.

When you do your search you should – of course – substitute ‘baby food’ by your own niche or product.

 


Affiliate Programs on the Merchants Websites

Sometimes you already have a product in mind. This could be because you already use it or maybe you know other people who do.

Anyway, the fact is that you already know what you’d like to promote. Or you know the merchant you’d like to work with.

In these cases, you can directly access their site and look for “Affiliate Program”.

It’s usually in the site footer, but it could also be on the top menu.

As an example, still on the baby niche, let’s say I knew I wanted to be an affiliate of The Green Nursery products.

I’d access their website (http://thegreennursery.com/) and find the affiliate program link in the footer:

TGN Affiliate Program indication on website footer

 


Amazon Associates Program

Amazon Associates is Amazon’s affiliate program and – let me tell you – they are huge!

Amazon Associates - affiliate program

As they state, they have “Earth’s biggest selection online store”. They sell about anything, and you can be their affiliate.

Just to give you an idea, they even sell container houses!

P.S.: If you end up buying a house like this through my link, I’m going to get a small commission 😉

Amazon is a great starting point. Not only the selection is amazing but also their program is very structured, and they’re experts on converting sales.

It’s basically like this… Your job is to lead your visitors to Amazon’s marketplace through your links. After that, he/she will be exposed to images, product details, testimonials, additional sales suggestions and a lot more sale resources.

Best of all, you’ll get a commission on basically anything he/she buys from Amazon in the next 24hr.

That’s right, not only the product you recommended. Pretty nice, don’t you think?

>> TIP: when selecting which items you’re going to promote, check out Amazon’s Best Sellers Lists. They’re updated hourly with what people are really buying.

Popular items are easier to promote because any new buyer – when in doubt – will tend to purchase whatever has already been tested and approved by others.


Affiliate Networks and their Multiple Options

Affiliate networks are intermediaries between you (so-called publisher) and product merchants.

A network holds several merchants affiliate programs thus it comes in handy for when you’re looking for new affiliate opportunities.

Some popular affiliate networks you can investigate are (in no particular order):

You just need to access directly each website, check what are the available merchants and see if any is a good fit for you.

If you already use Jaaxy (or are considering to start using it) here goes a reminder: besides being an outstanding keyword research tool, it also offers a feature called “Affiliate Programs”.

How to find affiliate programs on Jaaxy

Easy to use and straight to the point, all you have to do is:

  1. Type in the product/keyword you’re searching forOn the example above, I was looking for “self-help” products.
  2. Choose an Affiliate Network
  3. Click the “Find Keywords” button

The results list shows the “Affiliate Program name”, a link to the “Product Website”, the “Commission” percentage, the “Alexa Rank” for each on the resulting websites, and the “Affiliate Network” button so that you can access it immediately should you want to do so.

I don’t know about you, but I think this is a huge time saver! The perfect way to have that first look at the available affiliate networks without having to dig in each program.

>> Related: If you’d like to know more details about this tool, I invite you to check out my Jaaxy review here.


After all this research through multiple sources, you possibly have more than one Affiliate Program alternatives in your hands.

This is where this process gets really interesting and you will want to fine-tune your strategy before making any new moves.

Should you Apply for All Programs?

I’ve seen lots of affiliate marketers adopting the traditional approach of analyzing their options through the lens of someone who will only partner with programs of products they intend to promote.

And that’s fair.

But thinking outside the box at this point may result in great benefit to your business.

Let me explain by giving you an example.

Consider I’m writing a review on a ‘competition road bike model Alchemy Eros’ which will be my recommendation. I then decide to also make use of a comparison chart including another popular road bike, let’s say, ‘Basso Astra Disc’.

>> Comparisons have proved to be conversion effective when presenting purchase arguments to readers.

Basso Bike example on how to find affiliate programs

The traditional approach would be to only include my affiliate link on my recommended bike. But what if my visitor – despite my arguments in one direction – decides to buy the other model?

Believe me, this happens more often than you’d think.

>> NOT inserting an affiliate link to the second bike would be missing a monetization opportunity.

So, my suggestion is that you consider applying to any affiliate program that you may link from your posts and reviews. Of course, as an ethical marketer, you should clearly state your opinion and recommendations toward your preferred product.

That doesn’t mean you can’t let your readers decide their purchases for themselves.

Besides, if they do choose differently than you recommended, they’re to be taken accountable, don’t you think?

If you decide to follow this suggestion, there will be 2 categories of affiliate products on your website:

  1. Your recommendations. The ones you’ll invest your time promoting.
  2. Products you don’t recommend but make their links available, in case someone decides to buy them, despite your advice.

Great! This means you can start applying to all of them, correct?

Not really. Before sending out any applications, you should check on them before and make sure they’re reliable.


Reviews on Affiliate Programs

When considering buying a product/service, most people check their reviews first. Do you do the same?

I know I do. This simple practice has, actually, helped me tons of times to make the right buying decision!

It works the same with Affiliate Programs. Learn with the ones who have already tried the same path you’re thinking about taking.

All you have to do is, again, go back to Google and type in the following:

[affiliate program name] + review

You can also search for the Affiliate Network review.

Clickbank affiliate program review

Let’s be honest here. Although as an affiliate marketer, writing reviews is common practice for me, I have to warn you to be careful when reading them.

Not all reviews are trustworthy.

Some of them are just dishonest affiliate marketers/merchants trying to sell and make easy money.

Look for signs such as:

  • money making promises
  • guarantees of overnight results
  • massive use of superlative adjectives

In general, we can tell when a review is nothing but a sales pitch. So be wary and read more than one.


Ask Other People’s Opinions

Another way of checking a program reliability is by asking more experienced one.

You may be thinking that you don’t know any other affiliate marketer.

No worries, you can always go to Q/A sites, like Quora, and simply pop up the question.

This is an example:

Asking is Clickbank is a scam on Quora
Of course, it could happen that some “smart” guys try to turn your question into just an opportunity to drive people to their own programs. But you can always tell when it’s not a legitimate answer, like this one:

Suspicious answer on Quora

Another alternative is to simply ask at an affiliate marketing group or platform. You’re likely going to get tons of honest answers.

Well, at least that’s what happens at the platform I’m a member of.

For instance, when someone asked “How good is Shareasale affiliate program?”, the answers were all something like this:

Honest answer on Wealthy Affiliate community

>> Related: To learn more about this entire Internet Marketing platform I’m a member of, I suggest you read my Wealthy Affiliate Review here.


Experience the Merchant’s Website

Visit the site from the perspective of a potential buyer.

Simulate a purchase process and go all the way to the check-out. Although you don’t need to actually buy the product, you can pretty much make an assessment of the general user experience.

  • Was it pleasant and easy?
  • Did they deliver all the needed information a visitor would need to go through the process?
  • Was it an HTTPS website?

I’m sure you get the picture and will think of other aspects to closely watch for.

The important thing here is:

  • The more you feel good about this simulated visit the more chances your readers will like it as well. That’s better sales opportunities.
  • When you become an affiliate and promote someone’s products/services, you should assume that people will start associating you/your business to the merchant. This could be incredibly beneficial or terribly disadvantageous. So choose wisely.
  • If the user experience isn’t a fairly good one, you can count on bearing an even worse one as an affiliate.

Once you finish the selection process – cutting out of the list all programs that aren’t reliable – you’ll go to the next step: submit your application.


Applying and Getting Approved (or not)

The application process varies tremendously according to the program(s) you selected. But they’re usually straightforward and easy.

Just follow the instructions and wait for their answer.

I thought I’d give you an idea of how it’s done when you’re applying for Amazon’s affiliate program.

Before we finish this article, I just want to let you know a few important things:

  • Some programs will require that you have at least 10 pages/posts on your website before approving you.
  • Others require some traffic.
  • The approval process can take from a few minutes to multiple days.
  • They may even never answer (in my opinion that’s extremely unprofessional but it does happen)
  • You will likely be refused at some point. If (when) this happens, please don’t take it personally.They have their own criteria (demographics, niche, size etc) and it doesn’t necessarily mean that your website is a bad one.If you wish to know the reasons (or would like to try to reverse their decision) you can always send them an email (a very polite one, please) and ask for some answers.

There are lots of great programs out there. Don’t waste your precious time regretting the fact that one of them didn’t want to partner with you.

Keep going, see if you can improve your website, correct it, and try another program.

You’ll be just fine.


As you can see, this is a simple process although you may need to invest some time. But hey, this is important stuff!

Do it right and you’ll potentially have a long win-win relationship.

Do it too fast and careless… you will probably regret it in the future when the problems with commissions (and other issues) start happening.

This is not meant to scare you, just open your eyes and give you enough info for you to succeed.

Like we say here, it’s Not About Luck, it’s about Knowledge and Strategies.

If you’re new to affiliate marketing and wish to learn proven winning methods to earn money online, I highly recommend Wealthy Affiliate. Check it out!

Click here to join Wealthy Affiliate Now

 

 

 

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Eliane

Eliane is a Wife, Mother, Entrepreneur, Laptop Lifestyle Enthusiast, and Internet Marketing Support Coach. Ever since she started her Online Business she works from anywhere and whenever she wants to. This means being closer to her kids as they grow up. And she LOVES it!

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20 Responses

  1. Daniela says:

    Thanks for such detailed information!
    Can’t wait to get started with the Amazon Associates Program.

    • Eliane says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Daniela.
      I see you’ve already decided for the Amazon Associates. It’s a great choice and there are a lot of people making good money out of there.
      Once you start, I suggest you access the “Discussion Boards”. There you’ll not only be able to get your questions answered but will also learn from other affiliates’ experiences.
      I hope you enjoy it!

  2. Stefan Vogt says:

    Hi Eliane, and thanks for this in-depth article.

    There’s really a lot to consider when starting to work with affiliate programs.

    I didn’t know the Jaaxy affiliate tool works as easy as this. Nice news and I will soon try that.

    It is true, the experience with affiliate programs differ a lot. From great to very poor there’s all to be said about some.

    • Eliane says:

      Hey Stefan,
      I’m glad you liked the article.

      Yes, Jaaxy is mostly known for being an extraordinary keyword research tool. But there’s so much more than that!
      SiteRank, SearchAnalysis (where you can “spy” a bit on your competitors for a given keyword), and Brainstorming are some examples.

      You can get more detailed info reading my Jaaxy review here.

      Til next time!

  3. Judson says:

    Hi, this is really great information to refer to.
    I like what you have provided that helps narrow down the research for those looking to start an affiliate business online.
    Thank you.

  4. Christen says:

    This is a very informative post – a lot of great content for a newbie blogger like me :).
    I will be using the strategies you’ve mentioned here to help monetize my blog.

    Thanks!
    Christen

    • Eliane says:

      I’m happy you found it useful, Christen.
      You’re right, although our main focus – as affiliate marketers – is helping out our audience, we can never forget that this is a business. As such, we need to make the right choices as to our monetization strategies.

      Newbies not always realize that. So congrats! You’re definitely on the right path. 🙂

      Also, I think it’s important for beginners to follow the steps of successful marketers. I’m not talking about magic or secret formulas! They don’t exist!

      The truth is that success comes to the ones who consistently apply winning practices. These practices are available to anyone who decides to join WA, the platform I chose a while ago to help me grow my online business.

      If you want to know more details, I invite you to read my Wealthy Affiliate review here.

      P.S.: it’s FREE to join, no credit cards needed. If you don’t like what you see, you can simply leave it!

  5. Penelope says:

    What a great post!
    I feel so much more informed about the pros and cons of using multiple affiliates for the same product, and also just how to get the lowdown on how an affiliate actually is.
    I also had NO idea that Amazon.com sold container houses 🙂

    • Eliane says:

      lol
      Yeah, I think Amazon is amazing.

      I’m glad you liked the post, Penelope.

      I believe this is not a one-time process. We should rethink our affiliate programs from time to time.
      Frequently investigating new programs and improving our mix of recommended products can only be beneficial to us, affiliate marketers, and our visitors, don’t you think?

      Wish you lots of success!

  6. Sharon says:

    Wow! This is a lot of information.
    At the moment, I am only working with Amazon Associates.
    In the beginning, I tried applying through the merchants’ website but without success. And Affiliate Networks were too confusing for me.
    You have explained them here in such a simple way for me to understand.
    Lots to think about moving forward.

    Many thanks,
    Sharon

    • Eliane says:

      Yes, Sharon, I agree that applying to Amazon Associates is pretty simple.

      Since you’re already an Amazon affiliate, I suggest you try to get the best out of it. It’s so vast and filled with opportunities.

      But you need to look for the best products to promote within your niche. It’s not just any item.
      Pay attention to their prices, the commission rates, how many stars they’ve gotten from their buyers, read testimonials, what seems to be their main problem, and their uniqueness? These aspects will help you make a well thought out decision.

      I don’t know if you’re already doing this, but joining the “Discussion Boards” – within the Associate’s platform – is a great way to learn more and improve your results as an Amazon affiliate. I highly recommend you do it.

      See you next time.

  7. Suzanne says:

    Hi Elaine,
    Great post! Everything I needed to know about affiliates. I use Jaaxy myself, and it’s a wonderful tool. Except I’ve never thought of using it as a search for affiliate companies, haha. I’ll have to check that out.
    Cheers,
    Suzanne

    • Eliane says:

      Hi, Suzanne.
      Thanks for stopping by.

      Yes, Jaaxy is an entire keyword platform that offers much more than just reliable metrics that help us decide on the best keyword to target on our articles.

      We just need to explore it a bit at a time.

      For the ones who don’t know it and want to see – for themselves – how powerful it is, I always suggest they access the 30 FREE Jaaxy Searches anyone is entitled to.

      Cheers!

  8. Nikki says:

    Hi Eliane!

    Thanks for the specifics on finding an affiliate program.
    I was just going to type in my niche and affiliate and see what came up. But you offered much more thoughts and advice on the subject.
    Thanks again 🙂

    • Eliane says:

      Hi, Nikki!

      That’s awesome to know. I’m sure you’ll be able to find some good affiliate programs to partner with.
      There are tons of great ones, we just need to know how to find them.

      Best of luck with your website.

  9. Glenys says:

    I wish someone would buy a small house on Amazon via my affiliate links he he he!!
    Thanks for this great walk through of how to elevate my Affiliate marketing websites and get new vendors and new products.
    I use Jaaxy as my SEO Keyword selection tools. I hadn’t really branched out to using it as an Affiliate program product selection and vendor selection program as well. Thanks for the great tips there. That will save me a lot of time later on.
    Thank you for the great reminder about Commission Junction (CJ) and a few other affiliate programs out there. I really do need to broaden my horizon and get a variety of products for my audience.
    Great tips. Thanks

    • Eliane says:

      Hi, Glenys.
      I’m glad you found this article useful.
      Yes, Jaaxy is a wonderful multifunctional tool. We just need to explore it to the fullest to realize how powerful it actually is.
      Thanks for stopping by.

  10. Thank you for this great article. The information was clear and helpful. I especially liked the part about using JAAXY to search for Affiliate Programs. That sure saves time!
    Also, the part about checking Affiliate Program reviews using Google: [Affiliate Program Name] + review was helpful.
    Good job!

    • Eliane says:

      I’m glad you liked it, Sherri. And I hope some of these tips help you with your website.

      The following Blog was written by a very successful marketer. It’s an eye-opener regarding what to consider when choosing affiliate programs.
      I believe you’ll find it as insightful as I did.

      https://notaboutluck.com/ChooseAffiliatePgm

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