Starting your own website or blog is a great way to earn some extra money, but if you want to turn your hobby into a successful career, you need to know how to maximize your profit potential.
One way of increasing your website’s profits is by exploring affiliate networks, which allow you to partner with different brands and companies to earn commissions for promoting their products.
What Are Affiliate Networks?
First off, let’s define affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is the process of referring customers to a product or service and earning a commission on the resulting transaction.
Because affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to get people to market products and services, you will probably have to weed through thousands of affiliate programs to find the ones that will work best with your blog or website.
An affiliate network is essentially a middleman that connects entrepreneurs and bloggers with the companies that offer affiliate programs for their products or services.
Finding the best affiliate networks can save you time and effort. Here are some more benefits of joining an affiliate network:
- Provides a central database where you can find the offers best suited for your site through easy search and filter functions
- Saves you time by letting you participate in several affiliate programs with a single registration
- Provides tools for data reporting, analytics, and payment processing
- Safe, guaranteed payments (can’t always be guaranteed if you’re working directly with an affiliate)
To help you become more efficient as an affiliate marketer, we have compiled a list of the best affiliate networks for you to choose from. Each network typically offers a wide array of products and services, so feel free to visit each one to check out what they have.
Best Affiliate Networks 2020
We have compiled a list of the best affiliate networks, with pros and cons for each. Take a look and consider your goals for your blog or website so you can decide which network will work best for you.
ShareASale is one of the biggest affiliate networks in the U.S., with more than 3,900 affiliate programs and more than 1,200,000 participating affiliates.
One of the first affiliate networks, ShareASale was founded in 2000 and acquired by global affiliate network Awin in 2017. Throughout the years, it has maintained a stellar reputation as an honest and fair business.
The acquisition helped ShareASale expand its international affiliate opportunities.
- Long and excellent track record
- Large database of affiliate programs
- Affiliate programs available in home & garden, green products, business, and fashion
- Payment options include check and direct deposits
- Low payout amount of $50
Another of the oldest affiliate networks, Rakuten was founded in 1997 as Buy.com and acquired by Japanese company Rakuten in 2010. It primarily offers physical products, and is a strong alternative to Amazon Affiliates.
Although they have only about 1,000 partners making them smaller than many other affiliate networks), Rakuten includes many industry leaders among its affiliate programs, such as Walmart, New Balance, Sephora, and more. It also gives you high-tech options such as flexible linking, rotating ads, and great optimization features.
- Long history of connecting publishers and merchants
- Many household names in its network
- Better Business Bureau gives it an A- rating
- Payment options include direct deposit, PayPal for certain markets, and check
- Intuitive user interface
- Offers a great system of reporting
- Smaller directory of affiliate programs
- Longer payout because they pay you only after the merchants pay them
ClickBank was founded in 1998, making it another of the longest-standing affiliate networks on the web. It focuses mainly on digital products created by entrepreneurs around the world, which allows ClickBank to offer one of the highest commission rates.
A lot of ClickBank’s offerings target the digital marketing and e-commerce niche. So if your blog caters to these topics, you can find a huge selection of vendors from Clickbank.
- One of the largest databases of over 6 million affiliate offerings
- Fast response time, earning it a Better Business Bureau A+ rating
- Payment schedule options including a weekly or monthly basis.
- Very low minimum payment amount of $10
- Payment options include direct deposit, wire transfer, check, and Payoneer.
- Solid network reputation
- Does not have PayPal option for payout
- You will need to confirm individual merchant reliability.
4. CJ Affiliate (formerly Commission Junction)
CJ was founded in 1998 as part of Fortune 500 company Alliance Data Systems. They claim that their access to unparalleled data allows them to offer “a truly customer-centric approach to affiliate marketing.”
- Over 3,000 merchants to choose from
- Includes premium partners like Apple, Home Depot, Zappos, and TurboTax
- Better Business Bureau gives it an A+ rating
- Offers combined monthly payment for all affiliate commissions
- Payment options include checks or direct deposit
- Minimum payment of $50 for direct deposit
- Offers powerful real-time reporting for monitoring activity
- Does not offer payout through PayPal
- Accounts get deactivated after 6 months of earning no commission.
- Merchants tend to be picky about whom they accept.
- Minimum payment of $100 for check payouts.
- Approved websites who fail to get results in the first six months may get deactivated
5. Amazon Associates
Amazon Associates, founded in 1996, is one of the oldest and largest affiliate networks available, offering both physical and digital products.
- One of the largest collections of products for earning commissions
- Amazon products often rank in the top Google search results.
- Payment options include checks, direct deposit, or Amazon gift certificates.
- Very high conversion rates
- Payment schedule is estimated at 60 days after the month-end of when you earned your commission.
- Payment by check includes a $15 processing fee for US-based affiliates
- Does not allow affiliate links to be included in e-mails
- Commission rates are not as high as other networks
Who says affiliate marketing has to be limited to physical products? ReviMedia’s offerings focus on the insurance industry, financial verticals in global markets, and home services.
- Offers services in the insurance and financial service industries
- Payment methods include check, PayPal, and wire transfer.
- Low minimum payment of $50
- Very limited niche
Partnering with more than 4,000 digital businesses in over 180 countries, 2checkout focuses on digital goods, eCommerce software, and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions.
- Strong support from their community of publishers
- Payment methods include check, PayPal, and wire transfer.
- Minimum payment amount of $100
MaxBounty is a cost per action (CPA) network, wherein the advertiser pays for specific actions performed by customers. It offers affiliate programs for the diet, market research, real estate, and dating industries.
These actions could range from form submissions, to downloads, sales, or any other action that a site visitor performs, which the advertiser then pays for.
This network is great for experts at conversion rate optimization.
- Offers programs in the dating, dieting, and real estate industries
- Payment methods include wire transfer, direct deposit, check, Payoneer, PayPal, and Bitcoin
- Received a Better Business Bureau rating of A+
- Minimum payment amount of $100
- Niches are limited
9. eBay Partner Network
The eBay Partner Network was established in 2008, but its parent company eBay has been a major player in e-commerce from as early as 1995. You get to promote the 1.1 billion physical products listed on eBay.
- A very large offering on parent company’s site
- A very stable parent company
- Received an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau
- Very low minimum payment of $10, paid monthly
- Payment options include direct deposit and PayPal
- Allows you to promote unusual products not found elsewhere
Pepperjam joined the fray only in 2015, despite the company’s presence in digital marketing since the 1990s. Although it has a relatively low number of options compared to its competitors, the company believes in promoting only brands that they believe in.
- A very transparent company that prioritizes communication
- Allows publishers to communicate with merchants inside its system
- Low minimum payment of $25 and twice a month payment
- Payment options include check, direct deposit, or PayPal
- Limited offerings with only 1,500 merchants in its list
- Received a C+ rating from Better Business Bureau
Founded in 2002, MoreNiche does not have as many products in their collection, but they do offer a high commission rate of between 30–40%. They focus on the health, weight loss, and bodybuilding niches.
- Offers a high commission rate of 30–40%
- Has a team of affiliate managers to provide proactive support, including advice on SEO and website audits
- Organizes Mastermind events
- Prioritizes relationship-building with their affiliates
- Payment methods include Payoneer, Bitcoin, Skrill, and direct deposit
- Minimum payment of $100
MarketHealth focuses on the beauty and health industry. Their program is also available for affiliate marketers outside the US, with global reach to over 100 countries.
- Offerings in local languages across the world
- A robust tracking software that offers free advertising tools like banners and landing pages
- Payment methods include check, wire transfer, Skrill, and prepaid debit cards
- Very low minimum payment amount of $20
Many bloggers view Affiliaxe as the best network for those with extensive experience in affiliate marketing. It has an unusual thrust for exclusivity, but also delivers on its promise of great niche products to choose from.
- Has more than 700 programs in profitable niches such as dieting, entertainment, wellness, and mobile content.
- Affiliate managers offer assistance and guidance in creating and improving campaigns.
- Works with big brands including Mcafee, Norton, Omega XL, Marley Spoon, and TruthFinder
- Very intuitive platform
- Payment methods include wire transfer, check, PayPal, and Payoneer
- Uses an invitation-only process for approving affiliates
- Minimum payment of $100
How Do I Join Affiliate Marketing Networks?
Most affiliate marketing networks already have a clear-cut sign up process that you just need to follow. These generally include the following steps:
- Identify your industry and niche.
- Sign up for the affiliate program(s) matching your chosen industry and niche.
- In your content, use the link that lets the merchant track clicks.
If you find a company that does not seem to have clear instructions for affiliate marketing, you can contact their support team to ask if they offer affiliate programs or are part of a network.
What Is the Highest Paying Affiliate Program?
Below are some examples of the types of benefits you might expect from different affiliate programs. However, these are just a few examples, so remember that terms and benefits will vary by program,
- ClickFunnels: ClickFunnels offers at least 40% commission on all front end offers.
- Fiverr: According to Fiverr’s commission plan, you can potentially earn up to $150 for referring a first-time buyer to the world’s largest marketplace offering digital services.
- WealthyAffiliate: The WealthyAffiliate website estimates the average commission for a single sale to be $121, making it one of the highest paying affiliate programs available.
Best Affiliate Networks
Now that you’ve had a look at 13 of the best affiliate networks available, think about which product niches or features you would benefit from the most.
In the end, the best networks will be those that serve your overall goals for your website or blog.
Did you find this post helpful? Let us know in the comments below!
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