What Is Affiliate Marketing About and How Does It Work? – Guide

Share with Family & Friends

Hello and welcome to “What Is Affiliate Marketing About and How Does It Work” guide.

In this article I am going to go over some questions that I keep getting asked. Hopefully by the end of this guide you will have a clearer understanding of Affiliate Marketing.

I am sure we all have seen those ads stating:

  • “make $350 overnight with this…”
  • “make $5,324 while you sleep using this…”
  • “he made $34,000 this weekend with this secret…”


What Is Affiliate Marketing About and How Does It Work? - market shopping
Shopping at the local market

We will be covering these and a lot more of what you really need to know about affiliate marketing.

But first…


What Is Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing = “is the process of earning income every time you promote someone else’s product or services overnight.

In other words if you create the sale of a product for a company you get paid.

Let’s compare it to your local store. Store ABC buys products to sell on their shelves. Someone sees a special in the window and comes in to have a look and finds something they like then buys it. You get you’re money back plus a little extra to cover the cost of the store, employees, shipping etc. These extra expenses add up to a lot of money for a local store.

Now lets have a look at DropShipping. You don’t own a store with Drop Shipping but you’re biggest expense is in the advertising. You advertise in Newspapers, Magazines, flyers or any other place you can put an add. Someone sees the ad and likes what they see then orders the product which arrives in the mail. In this case the advertiser never gets to touch the product.

Today we have Affiliate Marketing. They will either have a site to advertise or place an ad on social media to advertise. Someone sees their ad where they can decide to purchase the product. This is similar to Drop Shipping in that you advertise to sell someone else’s product without ever touching it. The only difference is that you are doing it online and advertising it online.

One could put an ad in the paper however the cost for advertising in the local paper or a magazine would not be cost effective. They pay for the employees, printing etc. When you advertise online as an Affiliate Marketer it’s usually you who writes the ad and advertises it at least until you make enough to out-source or hire extra help.


The Structure

Affiliate Marketing has four core players:

  • the merchant (this is the ‘advertiser’ or ‘retailer’)
  • the network (this is the system setup to handle the transactions to ensure the correct person gets credit for the sale)
  • the publisher (this would be the ‘Affiliate’ that does the advertising)
  • the customer (this is the person making the purchase)

According to Wikipedia affiliate marketing is referred as revenue sharing which predates the internet and affiliate marketing. So it’s clear that the concept has been around for sometime.

Today the industry has expanded to include:

  • affiliate management agencies
  • specialized third party vendors
  • training programs (not offered in secondary education system)
What Is Affiliate Marketing About and How Does It Work? - using white Board
Explaining affiliate marketing on a white board

These are basically a supply outlet for affiliate marketers to find the products they wish to promote. This is like a local store going to a supply chain or warehouse where they can pick up the products they wish to sell in their store.

  • Anyone advertises on the internet uses regular advertising methods:
  • organic search engine optimization (SEO)
  • paid search engine marketing (PPC – Pay Per Click)
  • e-mail marketing
  • content marketing
  • display advertising


Affiliate marketing is not:

  • referral marketing
  • MLM (multilevel marketing)
  • a scam or illegal form of selling


It is true there are some affiliates who choose to do things illegally and take advantage of their customers. This is not practiced by all affiliates just like not all car salesmen are dishonest.

To protect yourself from these illegal or dishonest sales people we must educate our selves before we make the purchase.


Why would they pay me

What Is Affiliate Marketing About and How Does It Work - a painting
Beautiful painting

A big question someone new to affiliate marketing asks is why would a company pay me to sell their product when they can sell it themselves.

The reality is simple…

It’s just not cost effective for the producer to design / create a product and then try to sell it to the world them self. It’s way more cost effective and time saving to get others to promote and sell your product for you.

With today’s software it is possible to create a digital product and sell it yourself using an online program however even that wasn’t necessary to have your own product. Back in 2009 me and my wife wrote a digital gardening book which we sold online for $5 per copy. This was not possible 10 years prior.

Even today affiliate marketing is often overlooked by brick and mortar stores by not realizing the power behind the search engines, e-mail, and social media sites which capture much of the attention of online shoppers. More and more local stores will be closing their doors due to competition from the online world.

Still, not convinced, take a look around and see what companies have closed their doors. It is just too difficult to compete against unless you sell something that’s created/grown local or it’s a service.


Here’s the reality…

… affiliate marketing has grown very fast since its inception. According to one report, the total sales generated through affiliate networks are.

In 2005 they estimated sales online for 2006 to be $1.35 billion – in 2006 they reached $2.16 billion in the United Kingdom alone.

The most active sectors are the:

  • adult gambling
  • retail industries
  • file-sharing services.
  • mobile phone
  • finance
  • travel
  • gaming
  • Internet-related services

Affiliate marketing is not a small thing like many of the uninformed tend to believe.


Who is Affiliate Marketing for

What Is Affiliate Marketing About and How Does It Work? - community
A community where you get to learn from others

There are no age restrictions but affiliate marketing is for anyone from a teenager to someone that can still use the internet. The oldest person I know of is 86 years old and according to him it keeps him alive and going because he is using his mind while most people his age just sit around watching TV.

Once the mind dies the body follows shortly after.

The youngest person I heard of is a young girl that started at age 10 with the help of her parents and now as a teenager she is supplying the income to their family. She employs her parents to do the things she doesn’t have time for or can’t do herself.

If one doesn’t get moving to the online world they may find themselves out of a job before long.

The best time to get started is NOW. Statistics show procrastination cost’s the most in the long run. Affiliate marketing can be done literally anywhere there’s an internet connection.

It’s best to have some kind of income already coming in until the sales start flowing.

Affiliate marketing is considered the only source where anyone can start with no money or experience and yet make enough to not only replace their day job but travel and do the things they never dreamed was possible.

It’s best to have some kind of income already coming in until the sales start flowing.

No longer does someone have to survive merely on a pension.


Where can I lean

The biggest mistake most will make is to grab the first training program they come across because it sounds good. This is the first lesson in learning to become an affiliate marketer and not just one that practices.

There are plenty of affiliate training programs out there however most of them are just designed to throw some info at you for a huge sum of money and leave you hanging to figure it out on you’re own. You have to be very careful and my motto which I suggest you to follow is:

Learn Before You burn

If you’re looking for a good training program to get started online then read my review on #1 recommended training program for anyone just starting.

You can go here and try it out for FREE.


Can you really make money and how much

Let’s put it this way, everything you buy others are earning money from it. More and more stores are closing their doors because of the growth of internet marketing.

The amount of money you make and how soon will depend on the training package and how serious you are in making money. With the proper training you can be making money within 6 months to quitting you’re day job in a year. Even if you don’t take it serious but you have the proper training you can still be making some money in a year.

On the other hand if you take the wrong training then you can have a harder time and find yourself jumping from one program to another.

The higher the cost of a program does not mean it’s a better training program.

When done right you will build a quality business that you can also sell as an associate of mine did. She started building her website up 16 mths ago and decided to start over with a different web page. She sold her website for 38 grand.

Yes, you can make a lot of money as an affiliate marketer however not everyone makes money with affiliate marketing.

  • They took the wrong training
  • They tried it but didn’t make money so they claim everything is a scam
  • they tried it but found it too hard, want something easier and over night
  • they did it for 2 mths but never made a dime so they quit

This is very common among those that are looking for a get rich scheme.

The second biggest lesson you need to understand is that …


They are all fake!

Everyone that makes money online works hard and spends their time learning and building their business. It’s not uncommon for those that put in the hard work to make a substantial amount of income just a few years later.

Be sure to do it right with the right program…

What Is Affiliate Marketing About and How Does It Work? - Guide -WA product


I sincerely hope my article on “What Is Affiliate Marketing About and How Does It Work” was helpful in understanding a little more about affiliate marketing.

Just remember these two points:

  1. not all training programs are legit
  2. there’s no quick way to make money online

Affiliate marketing can be done anywhere in the world as long as there is an internet connection. Here are some benefits as an affiliate marketer:

  • no boss
  • no alarm clock
  • no traveling to work in bad weather
  • avoid picking up virus etc from others
  • live anywhere you wish
  • travel on vacation and stay as long as you like
  • take it with you when travelling
  • unlimited income
  • what you make you keep
  • make money even while you sleep
  • residual income

If you’re interested in making money online then go sign up for the special free training they are offering and save yourself a lot of time and money. Don’t worry they won’t even ask you for you’re credit card.

You will be given everything you need to build a website of you’re own choice along with a domain name and 10 free lessons.

If you like it you will keep going like thousands have.

I tried to cover everything however you can leave you’re questions or comments below.

All the best


Share with Family & Friends

8 thoughts on “What Is Affiliate Marketing About and How Does It Work? – Guide”

  1. Hi Rick.
    Great article. You really did put a lot of very good work in your article.
    I been involved in affiliate marketing for just 10 days now and I have to say your article have answered a lot of questions that I always had on mind and helped me to realize I am on the right track. You my friend have given me some of the information that i was looking for.

    Thank you very much for that.

    Wishing you all the best and stay safe.

    • Thank you for dropping by and leaving a comment Loannis. You are very welcome for the information and if you have any questions please feel free to ask them. I am no expert but I will do my best to either answer them or find the answer for you.

      All the best with your online marketing business.

      Take care

  2. You have tempted me to consider seriously about affiliate marketing, but could you recommend where I can find affiliate programs to join? I already have a website, but I am having problems finding affiliate products and with the economy is this a good time to start a business?


    • Hi Jeff it’s so nice to hear from you. If I have tempted you to look into becoming an affiliate marketer, good, because you should especially if you already have a website like you said. All you have to do is find quality products for those reading your posts. I would only recommend picking quality products that you know are high quality for your readers.

      To find products to join you can start with ClickBank, Share-a-sale or Commission Junction. You can join up for free and they have millions of products to choose from. Be sure to research the product prior to offering it on your website. You also want to pick a product that is relative to your website. As an example if you have a web page about fishing then pick things related to fishing – your readers will enjoy it a lot more.

      As for the time to start an online business, timing couldn’t be better my friend. People still want to shop so they do it online. States show that 3 in 10 people are shopping for things online that they normally buy in a store. The surge in online shopping is up 300%, even Amazon is forced to make adjustments and only deliver essential items.

      Jeff, even though you already have a website I would suggest you take the free training provided by my #1 recommended training product I mentioned in the article. This will cover a lot of the basics you should have and if you need more info after that you can always join up for the more in-depth training they provide. Right now they have a discount that you get the first month for $19 if you do buy more training.

      If you have any questions reach out to me,
      All the best with your online business,

  3. Thanks, Rick.

    Great article about AM and it covers pretty much everything a beginner would need to know.

    Quite often an affiliate marketing platform will try to get you to sign up while not even really explaining what it is.

    High-cost programs indeed do not mean better training.

    For anyone reading this, as Rick states, Wealthy Affiliate is by far the best value for money.

    Most of them are fake and WA is the real deal, you would be wise to take this advice.

    Not only does WA provide all the training you need, but you get free webspace, active server maintenance, comprehensive tutorials and a great community to help you.

    Cheers, Rick, I know many will find this useful.


    • Thank you for your wonderful comment Michael I really appreciate it. Yes I agree it is the best value for your money hands down. WA will never leave you hanging trying to figure out why it’s not working like so many of the fake programs out there. They will even let you sign up for FREE to try it by giving away 10 free lessons, domain name, and all the help you need. And don’t forget the free use of Jaaxy search tool, that alone is priceless.

      And if you use the link above you will also get the first month at a hugh discount if you do decide to join up.
      This training is a true people helping people which is hard to find these days.

      Thanks for dropping by Michael, it was great hearing from you.
      All the best,

  4. Great and informational piece! I am learning a lot from your articles and I like affiliate marketing because of the freedom that it might give you if you find the grit to learn it. I don’t like the commission one but I do find the Wealthy Affiliate one very interesting. Just not sure if I can stick with it to completion. I may just check it out anyway. Thanks, man for this review it sure helps to find the right one.

    • I am very pleased you enjoyed my article Asen. Commission Magnets will suit some but most people looking to make money online are looking for the fast buck to supplement their income. The problem with this is that they are looking at online marketing the wrong way, as a hobby and not as a career change. This is the wrong approach to online marketing because a hobby is something you do when you have time or feel like it. You need to go into online marketing with a commitment to succeed.

      You first have to learn about online marketing and the different ways of going about it. Many of my articles will go into more detail on the different types and even the training. From there you pick the direction you wish to take and then get started on the training. With this approach, you will be more educated with a direct focus on your goals and that is to build a business and not do it when you have the time attitude.

      This focus will give you the drive and passion to get anything done. You are building your own business which will provide you with a residual income for the rest of your life and should be taken seriously because you are building your own future and will change your life for the better.

      You want to build an honest business, not just take people’s money from them. You have to supply a product or service they are looking for. This always proves to be the best approach when it comes to building any business.

      If you are looking to get started right away then let me suggest checking out my #1 Recommendation review, you can try it for FREE and if you do decide to go premium this link will get you a 60% discount on the first month.

      Thanks for leaving your comment Asen I appreciate it.
      All the best


Leave a Comment