How to Start Affiliate Marketing and Make Your First Sale (For FREE)

How to Start Affiliate Marketing

Here's the deal:

If you're looking to start affiliate marketing ​and make money right now, you will need to have a blog and some traffic already.

If you don't, ​then you'll need to start from scratch (start here).

But if you're ready to go, then this post is for you. Here's what you're about to learn:

  • What affiliate marketing is.
  • How to make money with affiliate marketing...
  • Finding your readers' problems.
  • Finding the solution (the product).
  • Promoting the product.

Let's get started.

What is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing is one of many ways to make money online. It is popular among bloggers and niche marketers, especially.

And perhaps the simplest way to define's where someone promotes someone else's products in exchange for a percentage of every sale.

It's like this:​

  • Blogger finds great product.
  • Blogger joins company's affiliate program.
  • Blogger promotes to visitors.
  • Visitor buys product.
  • Company gives blogger a cut.

How to Start Affiliate Marketing For Free

First thing's first, if you do not have a blog or a website, you're on the wrong page. You will need to start from the very beginning of blogging and building moneymaking websites. (start here)

Alright. Now let's get started.​

Step 1: Find Your Readers' Problems

From my experience, finding out what your audience struggles with isn't as tough as it sounds. There are a few ways to do this...

  • Create a one-question survey and share it with your blog visitors, email subscribers, and social media followers.
  • Ask you email subscribers what they're struggling with (if you have a mailing list, that is).
  • Search through online communities (and forums) to see what questions are being asked.
  • Do some keyword research. Find what your target audience is searching for by using keyword tools, Google's auto-suggest, Google Trends, and the "Searches related to..." you see at the bottom of every SERP.

When you've found one of their problems, then it is time to move on.

Step 2: Find the Solution (the Product)

So you've found one of your audience's biggest struggles. What now?

​Now it's time to find something, particularly a product with an affiliate program, that can solve their problem.

For example, let's say you're in a health niche. Smoke cessation.​ Your audience is mostly people who can't quit on their own. They either need chewing gum or patches.

So, your job is to find the best product.

How? The easiest way is to buy it and try it yourself.

If you can't, then you'll have to rely on other people's words. That means reading product reviews and asking them on forums, Facebook Groups, and other online communities.

But before you pick the product you're going to promote, you'll have to make sure that there's an affiliate program for it. Otherwise, you won't make a single dime.

You have 3 ways to do this:

  • Search through Google - use this: "product name + affiliate program" (ex: nicotine patches + affiliate program).
  • Browse the Amazon marketplace.
  • Look through affiliate networks like Shareasale, Clickbank, CJ Affiliate, etc. (Click here for more networks)

Most affiliate programs and networks are free and easy to join. So you shouldn't face any issues. If you do, let me know.

Moving on...​

Step 3: Promote it to Your Readers

There are a few effective methods to promoting your affiliate product.

1, you can write a product review.

I've written many reviews, even here on AffiliMarketer's blog. Thrive Content Builder and Wealthy Affiliate, for example.​

They're very good at getting sales and driving traffic from search engines.​

2,​ you can promote it to your email list.

This is one of the best ways to generate affiliate product sales. Stuart Walker from NicheHacks, for one, has made thousands of dollars with affiliate + email marketing. Including over $2400 in less than 72 hours.​

3, you can use other types of affiliate content.​

There is more than just the product review. Including:​

  • The Recommended Tools/Resources Page
  • The AERP (Affiliate's Expert Roundup Post)
  • The Product Comparison Post
  • The Product Roundup Post
  • The Versus Comparison Post
  • And more.


Affiliate marketing can be one of your best income methods. Sometimes even the only method you need. That's how powerful and effective it is.

But to become a successful affiliate,​ you'll need to learn how to effectively promote your affiliate offers.

If you follow the 3 steps we outlined above, you can generate income in no time.​

If you need more help, let us know in the comments below.​

If you're totally new to affiliate marketing and building websites/blogs, consider joining Wealthy Affiliate. It's where I learned everything. And it's the only product like it I recommend. (start now)


Julian is a blogger, an affiliate, and a niche explorer. He loves everything in internet marketing. He also runs other blogs, such as Blogging Aid, where you can go to learn how to take your blog to the next level. You can also find him sharing tips and resources on Twitter. So check him out.

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