Everyone dreams of eventually becoming their own boss and working their own schedule, and being able to work from home is an incredible bonus for those of us who would rather spend time with our families and enjoying our lives than spend every day in a store or an office. This is where affiliate marketing comes in, and if you identify with the statement above, it just might be the perfect job for you!

Now, I will warn you that starting up as an affiliate marketer full time takes quite a lot of time, effort, and patience, but if you can stick to it and really dedicate yourself, you could be looking at your new career.

In this article we’ll go over 5 of the top affiliate marketing websites that you can use to get started on the journey to your dream job today.

So What Is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing is, essentially, a performance based marketing strategy businesses use to compensate or reward affiliates for each visitor or customer brought to the site by their marketing effort. You promote a product or products for a company – typically they will give you an affiliate link or code with which to direct these customers to the site – and they reward you by paying you a percentage of the sales generated by your recommendation. There are many different general sites that you can sign up with to get started, and many more sites within different niches such as wellness, makeup, clothing and so on that you can apply to sign up for once you’ve gained momentum and found what niche you fit in most.

VIDEO: What Is Affiliate Marketing?

Wealthy Affiliate

Wealthy Affiliate is my top suggestion for two reasons: They offer in-depth training on how to be a successful affiliate marketer, and they offer round the clock support from other affiliates, both old and new, so it’s essentially a huge community of people working together to help each other be as successful as possible. It’s free to sign up, and once you get used to the way everything works, you can either upgrade to a premium membership or stick to the free one if you want to.

Wealthy Affiliate has been in business for over ten years now (they got their start in 2005), and has continuously grown and evolved to keep up with, and sometimes surpass, the online industry. As with any online program, especially affiliate marketing, you will need to work hard to get going, but they provide all the tools you need to be successful. They give you a platform on which to build your site as well as tips on how to find your own niche market, how to properly conduct a keyword search, how to create a blog, and that’s just the surface of what their training program offers. And since it’s free, you can drop it at any time with no risk if you decide it isn’t for you.

Click Bank

Click Bank is an affiliate website that is unique in the fact that it is the distributor for it’s products, meaning that you’re dealing with the supplier of the products you’re promoting directly, rather than dealing with third-party suppliers. This program, like the one mentioned above, also provides it’s affiliates with in-depth training on how to get started, only in the form of training tutorials, rather than training courses. This training will walk you through getting your account set up and getting started in the affiliate marketing world.

Click Bank specializes in downloadable information products, which is essentially electronically delivered, knowledge-based products – also referred to as ‘digital goods.’ They go over how to promote these types of products, and if you come up with your own product to sell, they help you get started on that, too.

VIDEO: How To Find Great Affiliate Partners On Click Bank

Affilorama

Affilorama is an affiliate website that, like my first pick, was founded in 2005, and has been helping people be successful in the affiliate marketing business ever since. It’s
completely free to start out, and they provide training sections to help you get started, and are the no-nonsense type of business, in that they are up-front and honest with you from the start about how much time and effort you have to put in to make money online. Like WA, again, once you’ve gotten a feel for how the industry works and what working with
Affilorama will be like, you can choose to upgrade to their premium membership, which gets you access to every tool you need to build a website and see results.

They also have forums available for you, whether you’re a new-comer or have been with them for years, to speak with and get feedback and advice from other affiliates just like you. After all, it can be easy to feel like you’re the only one struggling when you make your money online, and talking to like-minded people who have found success can put a spring back into your step, and help you find a way to get yourself out of that rut and back in the game.

VIDEO: Introduction To Affilorama

Sign up for Affilorama FREE here!

Amazon Associates

Amazon Associates is one of the largest affiliate programs available, and is open to anyone aspiring to become an affiliate marketer, no matter your level of experience, so it’s perfect for beginners. They do provide training tutorials for those who are starting completely from scratch in the industry, but the downside is that they aren’t quite as in-depth as the others I’ve previously mentioned, and it can be a bit overwhelming to someone just starting out. Don’t worry, though; as long as you pay close attention to the training videos, find your niche, and stick to it, you’ll be fine.

The only other downside to being an affiliate associate with Amazon is that their commission rates don’t seem to be quite as high as some of the others, but it’s a great way to start out making a little extra money, and will get you the experience you need to move on to better-paying affiliate companies. Everyone has to start somewhere, right?

VIDEO: How To Make Money With The Amazon Associates Affiliate Program

Commission Junction

Commission Junction is a long-running affiliate marketing company, and attracts some larger brand names for promoters to apply for. It’s at the bottom of my list for one reason only: They expect even the newest affiliate marketer to produce results in as little as six months, so it’s best to apply after you’ve already established your website and have some experience under your belt from other programs. That may make it sound like it’s not the best for beginners, and for those starting completely fresh in the affiliate marketing world, that’s very true. But, again, for those who have some experience with affiliate marketing (maybe you’ve been an affiliate partner with Amazon for a little while and want to move on), you can be very successful with Commission Junction.

Unlike the other companies mentioned, CJ, provides an advertising platform rather than having involvement with product distribution and customer service. You’ll get your experience instead by dealing directly with the company who’s product you’re promoting, which can be both good and bad. Bad because you may feel overwhelmed with having to deal with the larger companies when issues arise, but good because you also will gain experience with larger corporation affiliate practices, and help you branch out if you choose to do so in the future.

Start Your Own Website!

Serious about becoming an affilaite marketer? Let's set up your website! It's not as hard as you might think! Just follow these simple step-by-step instructions, and for $2.95 per month, you'll have your own domain name on a WordPress website with discounted Bluehost web hosting. Ready to get started? Let's go!

Step 1: Visit Bluehost.com



Bluehost Web Hosting Best Web Host If you use this link you'll get discounted pricing for just $2.95/mo. So click here to visit Bluehost.com. Bluehost is the #1 recommended web hosting by WordPress.org. It also happens to be my top recommendation. Every account features 1-click WordPress installation. It is one of the most well known, mos popular, and affordable web hosting options. Bluehost is especially great for beginners due to their user friendly features and one-click WordPress installation.

Bluehost Homepage

Click the "get started now" button and let’s get started! (see above). Select a hosting plan that fits your needs. (Normally, if you are just starting out I recommend the basic plan but, if you are really serious about this and want more resources & power go with their Prime or Pro plan). Keep in mind, you can always upgrade your plan as you grow.

Bluehost Plans

Step 2: Pick Your Domain Name



Bluehost Domain

Search for a domain with the domain name search tool below. Don’t spend a ton of time on this step, you can always change the domain name later. If you already have a domain name, type it in the "I have a domain name" box. Bluehost is generous enough to throw in a FREE domain name with every new hosting account created.



The next step is to fill out your account and billing information.

Bluehost 
Personal Details

Review the package information below and decide what term/add-ons are desired. The biggest bang for your buck is on the 60 month term, but you can choose 36 months, 24 months or 12 months. Please note that Bluehost will charge you upfront for the entire term.

Bluehost Package Info

Insert payment information and accept the terms.

Bluehost Payment 
And Terms

Congrats, your hosting account has been created! Bluehost will send you a welcome email.

Bluehost Welcome Email

Create your password. Make sure to review the requirements for creating the password. If you need help you can always click the “Suggest Password” option. Regardless, I recommend notating it just to be safe. You’ll end up needing it later on.

Bluehost Terms of Service

Go ahead and login to start getting familiar with your new Bluehost account.

Bluehost Log In

Step 3: Install Your WordPress Website

Thanks to Bluehost, after your hosting account has been created WordPress will automatically install. Start off by picking a theme, these are all free themes from WordPress.org. You can always update or customize your theme later.

Bluehost Pick Theme

Now that you’ve picked your theme, let’s jump into WordPress and get you even closer to constructing that first blog post.

Bluehost WP Login

Decide whether this site will be for business or personal use.

Bluehost WP Dashboard

On this step, you’ll see an overview of Bluehost+WordPress integration. You can manage WordPress plugins and blog posts or pages here.

Bluehost Launch Site

Here’s a revamped dashboard of the Bluehost control panel.

Bluehost cpanel

Now you can make your site look how you want! Since you are using WordPress the sky's the limit! If you're looking for a great tutorial on how to build a great looking WordPress site, check out this video.

Start Publishing!

You now have a fully functional WordPress website with a great hosting company! That wasn't so hard, was it!? From this point on, your main task is to publish as much content as possible. This site has tons of tutorials and articles on how to grow your affilaite marketing business, but in order for you to fully understand how to publish content and make money with your affiliate marketing blog, check out this article. Best of luck to you as you grow your business! :) Want even more help? Check out this incredible affiliate marketer training program and community of people growing an affiliate business just like you!