15 Best Affiliate Marketing Programs For Beginners to Make Money In 2022!

15 Best Affiliate Marketing Programs For Beginners

Affiliate Marketing is an awesome way of making money online.  But one of the biggest challenges when getting started is finding the best affiliate marketing programs for beginners.

I mean, there are thousands of high paying affiliate programs out there to choose from.

If you choose the wrong affiliate program it could set you back months, but picking the right one could see you earning your first affiliate commission before your site is even “finished”.

This is a commonly asked question, so here’s a guide to help find the best affiliate marketing programs for beginners to make money in 2022!

I’ll also offer you some insights into why it can make more sense to sign up to an affiliate network over an in-house affiliate program, and vice versa.

Without further ado, let’s get started…

Table of Contents

Best Affiliate Marketing Programs For Beginners

  1. Amazon Associates Affiliate Program
  2. CJ (Commission Junction) Affiliate Program
  3. ShareASale Affiliate Program
  4. ClickBank Affiliate Program
  5. Rakuten Advertising Affiliate Program
  6. Impact Affiliate Program
  7. Awin Affiliate Program
  8. Etsy Affiliate Program
  9. eBay Partner Network Affiliate Program
  10. Fiverr Affiliate Program
  11. Refersion Marketplace
  12. PepperJam Network
  13. FlexOffers Affiliate Program
  14. Avangate Affiliate Program
  15. LinkConnector Affiliate Program

Bonus – MaxBounty Affiliate Program

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Affiliate Networks Vs. Affiliate Programs

One of the first things you need to get your head around is the difference between an independent (in-house) affiliate program and affiliate networks.

An in-house affiliate program is one that you need to go directly to a merchant to gain access to promoting their products.  An affiliate network usually connects you to many different merchants or retailers all within one platform.

So if you were to build an authority site with all-around outdoor sporting equipment, where you promote products like water slides, trampolines, lawn sports, etc.

You’d then have to choose whether to sign up for several individual affiliate programs for different manufacturers and suppliers.

Or, sign up for an affiliate network that connects you to multiple suppliers that you want to work with.

Now, it might sound easy to just sign up to an affiliate network and gain access to loads of affiliate programs related to your niche.  But that isn’t necessarily the best course of action.

This will depend on your research, as you want to understand what is out there.  You might find that you may still need to sign up for an in-house affiliate program and an affiliate network to be able to promote what you want.

Many affiliate programs are sitting within the affiliate networks we will be discussing today.  But you should also be looking to research your niche properly to understand any individual affiliate programs that might be a good fit.

As a beginner, affiliate networks make it easier.  But they also tend to have lower commission rates.  Whereas if you go direct to a retailer that manages their affiliate program, might give you a better commission rate.

My list includes some of the most popular affiliate networks and then a range of other affiliate programs that might apply to the majority of audiences.

What To Look For In a Good Affiliate Marketing Program

Before going through the list of affiliate marketing programs for beginners, let’s first share with what you should be looking for.  Finding good affiliate products related to your niche is integral to success.  Promoting the right products for your audience is key. 

But if the affiliate program isn’t easy to use, always has issues with crappy support and you can’t get access to your commissions.  Then it’s not a good fit for you.   So, there are 3 things you should consider when researching affiliate programs…

Ease of Use

When first starting with affiliate marketing, it makes sense to ensure everything is as easy as it can be to deal with.

This includes signing up for and using affiliate programs.  The majority of the ones I’ve dealt with are easy to use.  But there may be some independent ones that make it hard.  If it is, you need to ask yourself whether it’s worth the pain.

Dealing with a difficult affiliate program makes creating affiliate links, uploading a banner, or reviewing your performance really hard.

That is why affiliate networks do tend to be a godsend for beginners, as they take away many of these issues.  They are generally really easy to use and provide you with good data to help make your decision too.

Affiliate networks aim to make this process really easy as if you’re not making money, they’re not making money.

There are also examples of in-house affiliate programs, like the one at Wealthy Affiliate, that are easy to use and work with.  Again as they want to make it as easy as it can be to use.

My point is that you want to ensure the ease of use of an affiliate program/network is something you consider when deciding whether to sign up for it.

As your experience grows, you can start expanding to more complicated ones.

Point of Contact

There are always going to be times when things go wrong.  It might be an affiliate link that stops working, or you might have a question on why last week’s sales reports don’t look right at all.

This is when you’ll need help from a dedicated affiliate manager.

Affiliate networks tend to have a slight advantage here because you can rely on their support staff in addition to the affiliate manager for whatever program you have a question on.

Just bear in mind that affiliate managers are no different from face-to-face managers in that some of them are good and some are awful.

This is why it’s important you check what support you’ll receive before you sign up for an affiliate program.  Do you get a dedicated affiliate manager or just a generic contact email?

Commissions & Payments

Too many beginners focus on the commission rate (how much they will get paid) but then give very little attention to when they will get paid.

The majority of affiliate programs are Net 30, but some are Net 60, and even then some are Net 90.

What that means is…

  • Net 30 – get paid 30 days after making the sale
  • Net 60 – get paid 60 days
  • Net 90 – get paid 90 days

You’ll need to factor this in, as waiting 3 months for payment is a long time.  It might also not be worth it, if they are low-ticket commissions.

15 Best Affiliate Marketing Programs For Beginners

Right, now it’s time to take a look at some of the best affiliate marketing programs for beginners.  These are the options that will give you the best chance of making money online with your new affiliate business.

1. Amazon Associates

Amazon is one of the largest online marketplaces there is.  It’s also the first to have offered an affiliate program.  Having started offering the affiliate program in 1996.  This has meant that Jeff Bezos had a great insight into the future of online shopping, and turned Amazon into a very wealthy company!

best affiliate marketing programs for beginners - amazon associates affiliate program

The Amazon Affiliate Program, which is called Amazon Associates, is one of the oldest affiliate programs out there.  It’s also an ideal place for those getting started in affiliate marketing.  It’s easy to join, easy to use.  But it also gives you access to anything that Amazon sells.  

Which is pretty much anything you can think of.  I mean they sell products from many different categories.  If Amazon doesn’t sell it, you have to ask yourself why they you are looking at promoting it.

Amazon’s affiliate program is an ideal starting point for newbies.  There is an argument lately, as they lowered their commission rates.  But as you have the trust factor with Amazon, as you build up your authority, it’s a good starting point either way.

It’s easy to create an affiliate link, their dashboard is easy to review, and they have a great product range.  A must for any newbie affiliate marketer looking to learn their craft.

Want to learn how to build an affiliate marketing website for free?  Here’s a guide to building an affiliate marketing website.  You can also check out our complete guide to Amazon Associates too.

Website URLAmazon Associates

Cost: Free to Join

Type:  Affiliate Network

You Get Paid: Net 60

Payment Threshold: $10

Best Suited For: Newbie affiliate marketers starting out with their first website

Pros

  • Everyone knows the Amazon brand – this brings a lot of trust to potential customers considering clicking on your links
  • The number of products that Amazon sells – this means that they have something for (pretty much) any niche
  • Amazon prides itself on their customer service – as an affiliate you benefit from this
  • It’s super easy to create a link with their system and easy to manage affiliate links too
  • Their affiliate dashboard is easy to use and understand

Cons

  • Amazon’s commission rates are not the highest and they are prone to change them regularly
  • They only offer a 24-hour cookie time period.  This again isn’t the best out there…

2. CJ Affiliate

CJ Affiliate has gone through a number of name changes, but remains one of the oldest and more established affiliate networks online.  It was formerly known as Commission Junction and has been around since 2002.

CJ Affiliate Network

CJ Affiliate is different to Amazon in that it specialises in big brand names, as well as some smaller product and service suppliers.

They offer roughly 2,475 affiliate marketing programs.  They also have some huge brands such as Walgreens, Verizon, Under Armour, Trip Advisor, Staples, Sonos, Sears, and Samsung.

On top of this, you get all of the tools you need to be successful as an affiliate.  They offer great support and simple affiliate link creation.

But the key reason that makes CJ Affiliate is a good option is the metrics they provide to help you understand whether an affiliate program is worth joining or not.

Website URL: CJ Affiliate

Cost: Free to join

Type: Affiliate Network

You Get Paid: Net 30

Payment Threshold: $50

Best Suited For: Affiliate Marketers with around 3-6 months experience

Pros

  • Their interface and dashboard is really intuitive – it’s ideal for affiliate marketing beginners
  • They offer many different big brand names all with one account
  • It offers direct display advertising (flat fee and commission) opportunities
  • The metrics help you pick the right affiliate products without having the guess
  • Their support and tutorials make it really easy

Cons

  • Whilst they get big brand names, they do tend to come and go
  • There is a mild learning curve to learn how to use their interface

3. ShareASale

ShareASale has often been overlooked in the past.  They hadn’t changed their platform for years, making it look outdated.  But they have had a recent overhaul, making their platform great for affiliate marketers.  They also give you access to tons of great affiliate programs too.

ShareASale Affiliate Network

ShareASale represents around 5,000 different affiliate programs that are mainly smaller but profitable companies.  They might not have all of the huge brands, but that doesn’t mean you should discount them as an option.

Their dashboard has had a recent update too, making it much easier for you to navigate and understand which affiliate programs are good options for your campaigns.

ShareASale is definitely a network you should consider joining. 

Website URL: ShareASale

Cost: Free to Join

Type: Affiliate Network

You Get Paid: Net 30

Payment Threshold: $50

Best Suited For: An affiliate marketer who is looking for emerging brands or more tangible products and services

Pros

  • They offer access to thousands of products and services for you to promote
  • Smaller, unknown but very profitable affiliate programs
  • The ‘Search for Merchants” function is much better than the one at CJ Affiliate
  • Their ‘PowerRank’ metric shows you whether an affiliate program sits within the top 1,000 on ShareASale
  • There isn’t a huge wait to get paid
  • Their interface has just had a huge update – it used to look very dated

Cons

  • The approval process for affiliate programs can be unpredictable at times

4. ClickBank

ClickBank is another affiliate network that has been around a long time.  They’ve been online since 1998!

ClickBank Affiliate Network

And it’s a real rags-to-riches business story – one started by friends sitting around a garage, but that eventually transformed into a business with US$3 billion per year in sales.

While every other affiliate program was trying to figure out how to ship goods while still generating a profit, the guys at ClickBank turned that idea on its head by focusing instead on selling digital products.

That meant instant delivery, almost no overheads, and the ability for them to work directly with creators. And although they could never have imagined social media being a thing, their range of products can also work extremely well with those audiences. 

Whilst they mainly focus on digital products, they do offer some physical products too.

However, there are a couple of things that you need to consider and be mindful of if you do decide to go with ClickBank.

The first is that their marketplace interface hasn’t been updated since those early days.  It’s functional but makes the website look outdated.  You might look at it and think they only offer old stuff when that isn’t the case.

The other thing to consider is that there are very few checks against what can be added to their marketplace.  This means that they also have a lot of low-quality or even scammy products on there.

This can mean that they have a high refund rate, as people buy stuff and then realise it isn’t that good or doesn’t do what it says and request a refund.

Website URL: ClickBank

Cost: Free to Join

Type: Affiliate Network (Digital Products)

You Get Paid: Net 60

Payment Threshold: $50

Best Suited For: Affiliate marketers who are looking to promote digital products

Pros

  • Rarely need to be approved to be able to promote a program/product
  • A good network for anyone looking to do affiliate marketing without a website
  • Their top-tier programs average out at about $50 per sale
  • Many opportunities to promote programs with a recurring commission
  • Most of the pre-selling is pre-done for you by the merchant’s landing page
  • Affiliate links are easy to create with ClickBank

Cons

  • Whilst the platform is functional, it hasn’t been updated since it launched
  • There are a lot of low-quality products on their marketplace
  • These LQ programs generate a lot of refund requests, meaning you might make a sale but not get the commission as they request a refund

5. Rakuten Advertising

Rakuten is a name that many beginners might not have heard of, but they are a serious player when it comes to affiliate marketing.

Rakuten Advertising Affiliate Network

They got started with affiliate marketing when they acquired LinkShare back in 2005.

Since that point, they have taken the Rakuten LinkShare platform to new heights with them winning awards most years.

So, is it suitable for beginner affiliates?

Well, there are definitely reasons why it would be a good fit… and an issue that might make you think twice…

Let’s go through the positives first…

  1. The interface is pretty simple to navigate
  2. They represent over a thousand brands and businesses
  3. Their merchants cover a lot of niches, from gifts and flowers to consumer electronics and office supplies

The problem or downside for a newbie affiliate marketer is that their approval process is slow, especially if your site has little or no traffic.  Which is typical of most newbies getting started.

With that being said, Rakuten is a sleeping giant most newbie affiliates don’t pay enough attention to.

Some affiliates have implied this network is slow to pay out, but I’ve never had an issue with them.

Website URL: Rakuten Affiliate Program

Cost: Free to join

Type: Affiliate Network

You Get Paid: Net 30

Payment Threshold: $50

Best Suited For: Affiliates looking to broaden their offerings beyond Amazon and eBay

Pros

  • Many big brand affiliate programs are available on this platform
  • Reasonably intuitive interface
  • Handles over US$100 million in sales transactions per year
  • One of the oldest affiliate networks there is

Cons

  • There interface is really dated
  • They don’t offer any metrics to help you with your decision
  • Approval process can be an issue if your site is brand new

6. Impact

Impact is essentially another big affiliate marketing network (despite claiming otherwise), although it’s not as old as the likes of ClickBank and ShareASale.

Whilst they haven’t been around as long as some of the others, that doesn’t mean you should discount them.  The founders of Commission Junction (CJ Affiliate) are also the founds of Impact.

They house many big-name brands, such as Adidas, Airbnb, and HSBC.  At the time of writing, they have a total of 2,517 brands using the platform to reach new audiences, and they have new advertisers joining the network all the time.

One of the big differences from the others is that they have taken the time to ensure the user interface is smart and friendly.

One of my favourites is the “brands to work with instantly” section, which lists all the advertisers offering instant approvals. It’s a fantastic feature that makes it easy for new affiliate marketers to get up and running fast.

Website URL: Impact

Cost: Free to join

Type: Affiliate Network

You Get Paid: Monthly

Payment Threshold: Depends on the payment method

Best Suited For: Affiliate marketers looking for programs that offer an instant approval

Pros

  • Easy to find brands that offer an instant approval
  • Large selection of affiliate programs
  • The interface is intuitive and easy to use
  • They offer big-name brands, such as Adidas, HSBC, and Airbnb
  • Multiple ways of cashing out your earnings, including PayPal and direct bank transfer

Cons

  • The number of features offered on the interface make it harder for a beginner to get their head around
  • Only a minor issue, but they don’t have as many big names as CJ Affiliate

7. Awin

Awin claims to be the largest affiliate network, and it’s easy to see why when they have more than 16,500 advertisers, and 225,000 publishers…

Awin Affiliate Network

In 2020 alone, the platform generated an impressive 182 million sales.  With its affiliates earning $1 billion in commissions.  That is huge numbers.

It can also claim to be one of the oldest affiliate networks.  Whilst Awin has only been around since 2017, its history can be traced back to the zanox and Affiliate Window networks, both of which got started in 2000.

It has also acquired another of the affiliate networks on our list, which is ShareASale.  They still operate as separate businesses, and this allows you to have an account with either of them or both.

They also have plenty of big names in their books, like Emirates, Etsy, and Under Armour.

But the biggest benefit to Awin is their commitment to fast payments.  Many affiliate programs offer accelerated payments, plus you will get paid for validated transactions regardless of when Awin gets paid by the advertiser.

Website URL: Awin

Cost: Free to Join

Type: Affiliate Network

You Get Paid: Either once or twice a month (your choice)

Payment Threshold: From $20

Best Suited For: Affiliate Marketers looking for prompt payment!

Pros

  • A big plus is the accelerated payment process where you won’t have to wait long for commissions
  • Huge choice of affiliate programs
  • Easy-to-use platform with a clear and consistent labels and layouts
  • Their dashboard makes it easier to track your affiliate programs
  • Lots of big brands to work with

Cons

  • They have a high number of daily applicants from affiliate marketers, meaning you’ll face a lot of competition
  • The platform does operate globally, but it’s main focus is on the UK and EU markets

8. Etsy Affiliate Program

Etsy is a big player in the hand-made arts and crafts sector.  They provide a place for independent traders to sell their products to the public.  But as Etsy offers an affiliate program too, it makes the Etsy affiliate program something of a hybrid.

Etsy Affiliate Program

What Etsy has managed to do is become the leading platform in its niche – nobody else comes close.  They’ve gone from zero to publicly traded companies in a very few short years.

What makes Etsy stand out more and more is that they are very mainstream.  There are high levels of people who are using Etsy to buy personalised or unique gifts for people.

You can make money by linking to products that you find on their platform.  When someone makes a purchase you can earn a 4% commission.

It’s a great starting point for a new affiliate marketer, but you probably won’t be able to retire as the commission rate is quite low.  But as you can sign up to as many affiliate programs as you like, as long as they provide value to your readers, it’s a good option too.

Website URL: Etsy Affiliate Program

Cost: Free to Join

Type: Merchant (via Awin)

You Get Paid: Net 30

Payment Threshold: $50

Best Suited For: Affiliates looking to promote handmade items, personalised products or gifts, or vintage goods

Pros

  • Clean, modern interface with easy navigation
  • Constantly updated range of items in stock – there’s always something new
  • The best affiliate program in the craft/vintage/gift market
  • You support independent product creators (micro-businesses) when you promote Etsy
  • Their product range is diverse enough to keep people on the site for hours

Cons

  • Popular vendors who are doing well may leave the platform to launch their own site – teaches you to not out all of your eggs in one basket
  • Etsy traders have been making noise about some recent algorithm changes that have been made on the platform

9. eBay Partner Network

I’m going to assume you’ve heard of eBay.  It’s definitely a big player in the global market.  But it’s also a great option for an affiliate marketer too.

ebay partner network

But what started as a way for people to clear out their garages and make a few bucks has become a global marketing platform for individuals and big brands alike.

Did you know that more than 80% of the 1.4 billion listings on eBay are for new items?

It’s no longer just a platform for clearing out your unwanted things anymore.  

But what is surprising is how many people overlook eBay and go straight to Amazon as an affiliate marketer.  I’m not saying it’s a bad thing to sign up with Amazon, as they’re top of our list.  But you should never discount eBay either.

eBay manages their affiliate program, so there are no middlemen to deal with.  You work directly with them and they provide you with the tools and dashboards to review your affiliate commissions, etc.

And that means being able to build a relationship with their team of affiliate managers, something which could be invaluable to you in years to come.

In short, this affiliate program — officially called the eBay Partner Network (EPN) — isn’t perfect, but it can be a great place for brand new affiliates to start out, usually in conjunction with the Amazon Associates Program.

Website URL: eBay Partner Network

Cost: Free to join

Type: Merchant

You Get Paid: Net 30

Payment Threshold: $10

Best Suited For: Any affiliate marketer – if you’re considering Amazon, then you should definitely consider eBay

Pros

  • There is a really low barrier requirement to join their network, making it great for beginners
  • Globally recognised brand name
  • Hundreds of millions of products for sale (to promote)
  • There’s an opportunity to offer some real value to your visitors here – usually better than Amazon
  • Their commission rates are typically high, ranging up to 70% per sale
  • You can receive payments via PayPal

Cons

  • 24- Hour Cookie period
  • Many reproduction/knock-off products on their platform

If you want to learn more about the eBay Partner Network, then here is our complete guide…

10. Fiverr Affiliate Program

When you speak to other affiliate marketers, you will usually learn that selling services is a little easier than it is to sell a physical product.  Just present an audience with a list of service providers, and they’ll take care of the rest.

Fiverr took that basic concept and ran with it, monetising the gig industry for services covering the following umbrella categories: graphic design, marketing, writing, video and animation, music, programming, business, lifestyle and industries.

fiverr affiliate program

Fiverr is also a very lucrative option too, as they have one of the highest paying affiliate programs on the market.  There is an opportunity to earn up to $150 per referral, dependent on the service category you’re promoting.

The added benefit is that they also offer you several ways of earning affiliate commissions.  For example, you can earn affiliate revenue for promoting their “Learn from Fiverr” courses, which give you 30% per sale.

Fiverr built its reputation on selling digital services like WordPress installations and backlink building, you can now also find “lifestyle” services like arts and crafts, tarot readings, or even relationship advice.

It’s also really easy to sign up for their affiliate program, as you literally just enter your name, email address and decide on a password – easy!

Website URL: Fiverr Affiliate Program

Cost: Free to join

Type: Merchant

You Get Paid: Net 30

Payment Threshold: $100

Best Suited For: Affiliates basing a blog on a topic that is directly related to any of the Fiverr gig categories, although business-style services do sell well

Pros

  • Nice, clean affiliate interface
  • Fiverr are a market leader, very little competition
  • New services become available all of the time, providing you with new things to promote
  • It has the potential for high commissions, with $150 per referral opportunities

Cons

  • You don’t get paid for any sales that are made to existing customers
  • Just like Etsy, some of the most popular gigs will eventually decide to move to their own website

11. Refersion Marketplace

I must admit, I only came across this one as I was doing research for this blog post.  This is mainly down to the fact that they haven’t been around that long.

Refersion came to be in 2015, but despite that not being as long as the others, they’ve managed to attract an impressive 17,000 advertisers already.

That is no mean feat, considering other networks are struggling to sign on a few hundred merchants.

Website URL: Refersion Marketplace

Cost: Free trial (14 days)   $89/month after

Type: CPS

You Get Paid: Dependent on Advertisers

Payment Threshold: Dependent on Advertisers

Best Suited For: New affiliate marketers who are having trouble getting accepted by other platforms

Pros

  • You get a fast, minimalist interface and access to thousands of merchants across pretty much any niche you can think of
  • They send out a weekly email to publishers listing their new advertisers

Cons

  • Their advertiser filtering system is pretty poor – it needs overhauling
  • When you apply for an individual affiliate program it triggers a new window and then you to need to complete another application form each time
  • You pay a subscription and still may not get accepted by the advertiser

12. PepperJam

You may not have heard of PepperJam, but it definitely deserves it place on this list.

pepperjam affiliate network

They’ve been part of the affiliate marketing industry for years now, it even got acquired by eBay back in 2009.  Before being relaunched as PepperJam in 2016.  But most recently, in 2020, there were acquired by Partnerize.  According to the brief, this is supposed to take them to a new level too.

They represent a mixture of big brand names, like Puma, Nordstrom, Orion, and Lindt.  But they also offer a lot more niche brands too.

Website URL: PepperJam Affiliate Network

Cost: Free to Join

Type: CPS

You Get Paid: Net 60

Payment Threshold: $25

Best Suited For: PeppeJam is an affiliate network suitable to both new and experienced affiliates alike

Pros

  • There are some things about this network that makes them stand out from the crowd, like the easy-to-use affiliate dashboard, tabbed link creation interface (love this) and you can even email advertisers to query them directly, even if you’re not part of their program
  • PepperJam just feels that bit more “cosy” than some of the bigger affiliate marketing platforms

Cons

  • Fewer than 1,000 advertisers – meaning you could run out of potential offerings in your niche quite quickly (although the linkup with Partnerize might help over time)
  • Lacks public EPC data

13. FlexOffers

FlexOffers does a great job of standing out from the crowd… by not standing out from it.  The affiliate marketing industry is full of hype, but FlexOffers does all of their talking without it.

flexoffers affiliate network

They focus on providing a great service and network and let their services do the talking.  It’s probably one of the reasons why they have attracted some big-name brands to their books.  Companies like Macy’s, Walgreens, Kohl’s, Hulu, McAfee, AT&T, etc.

They currently boast over 12,000 advertisers, 75K publishers, and 65 networks, all accessed from one platform.

Website URL: FlexOffers

Cost: Free to join

Offer Type: CPS, CPL, Flat rate, Per Install

You Get Paid: Net 60

Payment Threshold: $25

Best Suited For: Affiliates who need or want access to the broadest selection of advertisers possible.

Pros

  • They have a simple and friendly onboarding process
  • They also allow applications from affiliates using Wix or Blogger, which is a real novelty these days
  • Their streamlined interface makes it much easier to filter through their advertisers – this includes the ability to sort by 7 to 30-day EPC
  • You can also earn additional revenue thanks to the Flex-Rev$hare program. This is where you get paid a cut of what your sub-affiliates make

Cons

  • Their customer support options are highly visible, but also extremely limited – you get a knowledge base and an email address.

14. AvanGate Network

Avangate first launched in 2006 and like ClickBank, they only promote digital products.

avangate affiliate network

The main difference though is that they represent software and digital courses in the main.

Avangate is a little confusing though.  As it is two companies.  Avangate is their affiliate software platform.

But their affiliate network is 2Checkout, which is also a payment processor (confusing, right?)

2Checkout has 22,000 software advertisers signed up with them, but also a handful of online courses, like SuperReading.

In terms of software, you’ll find everything from Hiding My Ass, Bit Defender, Malware Bytes, SEO PowerSuite, and Filmora, to FTP software.

Website URL: Avangate Network

Payment Options: Check, Direct Deposit, PayPal, Avangate Mastercard

Offer Type: CPS

You Get Paid: Net 30

Payment Threshold: $100

Best Suited For: Affiliates looking to promote digital training or software

Pros

  • 2Checkout keeps things simple
  • Their interface appears basic, but you can find what you’re after in seconds
  • They provide tools like deep linking tools, geo-targeted shopping carts, etc.
  • You’re able to use free software trials as a promotion and even generate your coupons
  • Applying to affiliate programs is also simple, all you need to do is click “Request partnership” and that’s it

Cons

  • Too many of the software programs are super nichey.  I’m not sure how large the market for some of them would be…

15. LinkConnector

LinkConnector is often overlooked, but is a solid option for our list of the best affiliate marketing programs for beginners.  They’ve even just won an award for being in the top ten for “Best CPS/Affiliate Networks”.

linkconnector affiliate network

They have attracted some top names like Reebok, Levis, Dockers, Omaha Steaks, Brain Sensei, and Deposit Photos.

They have a great selection of both physical and digital products and are definitely worth a look to see if they offer anything related to your niche.

Reviewing their list of featured merchants, there appears to be something for everyone…

Website URL: LinkConnector

Payment Options: Check or PayPal

Offer Type: CPS, CPL, Per Click, Pay Per Call

You Get Paid: Net 30

Payment Threshold: $100

Best Suited For: Affiliates looking for a good range of advertisers and a simple platform to deal with

Pros

  • They do only have 400 advertisers, but that makes it really easy to find what you’re after
  • It only requires 3 clicks for a given campaign
  • Their naked linking function – you can simply redirect traffic to the advertiser’s domain and not have to use a custom affiliate link at all

Cons

  • The limited number of advertisers might be a problem, but that’s only a possibility and not an eventuality
  • LinkConnector also has a really dated interface (like most older networks)

Bonus: MaxBounty

MaxBounty was in my original line up, but there are a few issues that mean it might not be a great option for a beginner.  But as you progress, or find that they advertise a brand you want, you may want to consider them.

So I added MaxBounty as a bonus on our listings…  

MaxBounty is a Canadian affiliate network.  It’s been in business since 2004, which is a long time in the online world.

Most other affiliate networks offer a wide range of different affiliate offers.  But MaxBounty focuses on just one – CPA offers.

This is where you get paid when someone takes a specific action, like installing software or filling in a form.

Typically CPA offers are more lucrative than CPS or flat rate offers.

MaxBounty currently have around 2,000 campaigns on their books, including those for more popular niches like dieting, online dating, etc.

Their application process and approval is a bit of an issue though, and beginners might find it harder to get accepted.  Hence why they ended up as a bonus listing…

Website URL: MaxBounty

Payment Options: Direct Deposit, Check, PayPal, Payoneer

Offer Type: CPA, CPL, CPI

You Get Paid: Net 30 (they list it as Net15 as you get paid on the 15th of the month, every month)

Payment Threshold: $50

Best Suited For: Established Affiliates with high traffic levels who need new CPA offers to promote

Pros

  • You can earn a cash bonus of $1,000 if you earn more than $1,000 in legit affiliate commissions within your first 90-days with them
  • Bright, clean, and modern dashboard – makes most of the others look antiquated

Cons

  • Their application and approval process is shockingly bad
  • The support is lacking, I’m afraid too (another reason why they are something to consider later down the line)

Best Affiliate Marketing Programs For Beginners - Conclusion

There it is, our list of the best affiliate marketing programs for beginners.

I’ve tried to cover as much as I could, and it should give you enough information to go in as to which you should start researching first.

The great thing is that if you already have some traffic under your belt, there is the potential to start earning some passive income from your visitors from tomorrow.  With some payments arriving in your account in the next 30 days.

Isn’t that great?  That’s what we love about this business model.  How many other business models can do that?

But if you’re sitting there thinking “I’m lost, what does all this mean”.  Then relax, that is why I’m here.

If you are just looking into the potential for affiliate marketing, but can now see the opportunity.  If but want to learn how to get started properly, then you can sign up for our 7-Day Affiliate Marketing Bootcamp and get taken every step needed to get started.

Or, if you want to learn more about affiliate marketing first, check out our complete guide here.

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Chas
Chas
5 months ago

HI John,
You must have covered all the affiliate marketing platforms available. I learned about a few I never heard of, and some I am quite familiar with and use all the time. For instance, Amazon. Yes, they did lower their commission rate and I am not as enthusiastic about them.

But, the cool part about them is, they have so many products, and offer such good incentives for people to buy. What happens a lot is people start shopping around for other products, and spend hundreds of dollars! Those small commissions can add up.

I also use and like SharaSale very much. They are free, and you get paid in 30 days and some commission rates are very good.

I am put off a bit by Refersion after the free trial, they charge $89 per month. I would rather use the free programs.

And FYI Shopify is now using Impact also!

I am definitely bookmarking this page for future reference.
Thanks John!

Matt
5 months ago

Hi John,

When picking a good affiliate program, I tend to find those offering a longer cookie period. If you only get a 24-hour long cookie, it would require you to edit all the links daily, which isn’t ideal. I’ve joined Amazon and Shareasale. Both are good platforms to start your affiliate marketing business, but if they could provide longer cookies, things would be easier for me. 🙂

Matt

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