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This is a great list. I need to bookmark this article. Thanks for sharing! I have been making money through Commission Junction using my own blogs. But you should make CJ at the first of the list as it is more promising than Shareasale affiliate program. Because you’ll be easier to find certain products and affiliate marketing programs that fit your blog niche CJ. There are various product types from tons of advertisers you can find on CJ to choose from.
Who is your audience? What is your target market or niche? If you're targeting a specific niche like home security then perhaps you only need to sign up to ADT and SpyBase so your products match your audience. There’s no point promoting eco-mattresses to your blog that’s focused on reviewing drones. Again, you could sign up to a network that has a few different options in your field of interest or just go straight to your favourite suppliers and see if they have an affiliate program.
Affiliate networks offer you access to multiple (and by multiple, we mean hundreds if not thousands) of individual affiliate programs. They basically work by simplifying the signup process - instead of applying to become an affiliate for a each product you want to promote, you simply apply to join the network and instantly have access to hundreds of different affiliate offers.

Hello Adam. Thank you! After months of searching and reading how to start a blog, I decided to stop procrastinating and take the plunge…just get started! I signed up for three years with Bluehost using the link at the site of one of the MANY bloggers I came across in my search (didn’t want to miss out on the low cost). I have joined MANY courses for beginner bloggers. Yours has been by far SUPERIOR! Thank you for laying out the information so simply, for providing all the links for more information, but BEST of all, for providing the FULL course, in such detail no less, at the start! My blog is almost three months old, but I have gone back through using the steps in the checklist you provided. THANK YOU!
“ShareASale is solid. Been using them since 2013. Biggest problems with them is the interface is a little dated / wonky. It’s also difficult to deal directly with the advertisers. You think you’re speaking to an advertiser rep, but it’s really just someone from SAS. You have to use a special (hard to find) contact form to contact the advertiser….and it’s rare you get a direct response from them.”
How established is your site/blog/social media following?  Do you already have an audience of 1 million or are you just getting started?  Early on in your affiliate marketing journey you will probably want to have multiple options to make sure you can cover a broad field. You might want to become an Amazon Associate as well as joining one of the networks so you will have a product link to drop into any posts you do.  An easy place to start is to promote the services you are using if you are enjoying their product - web hosting or email management systems like Aweber.
You can bid on PPC keywords related to the product you want to promote. However, you’re correct – there are usually restrictions around using any brand names in the keywords/ad copy. So it becomes a battle of non-brand keywords where you’re going up against the brands themselves and it can get expensive. However, it can work if you have a sizable budget and send users to a comparison page. Ranking 10+ different products increases your chances of revenue.
Hey there, sorry my very hungry blog ate your first comment. I would say that for new bloggers, my #1 tip is to focus less on writing and more on scaling. I’ve seen a lot of new bloggers worry about every word they write and spend so much time on every article. My advice is to get your posts live and start focusing on real-world relationships. Guest posts and backlinks will help your Domain Authority and traffic 100x more than just writing new content. Plus, since blog posts need to be updated over time, just hit the publish button and worry about making the article perfect later. 🙂 Good luck on your journey. My email list has a 7-day course that goes over my strategy in detail.

This is a great list. I need to bookmark this article. Thanks for sharing! I have been making money through Commission Junction using my own blogs. But you should make CJ at the first of the list as it is more promising than Shareasale affiliate program. Because you’ll be easier to find certain products and affiliate marketing programs that fit your blog niche CJ. There are various product types from tons of advertisers you can find on CJ to choose from.

How established is your site/blog/social media following?  Do you already have an audience of 1 million or are you just getting started?  Early on in your affiliate marketing journey you will probably want to have multiple options to make sure you can cover a broad field. You might want to become an Amazon Associate as well as joining one of the networks so you will have a product link to drop into any posts you do.  An easy place to start is to promote the services you are using if you are enjoying their product - web hosting or email management systems like Aweber.

There are also a lot of customization options. You can integrate hotel booking sites into your website, choose specific destinations, and showcase properties that interest you. For example, you could start a niche affiliate site about “Denver Family Vacations,” write content about the top things to do in Denver, guides about the local area, and promote specific hotels.

Turn your passion into a thriving online business with Wealthy Affiliates. Simply follow their proven process easy to use tools to launch a website, attract visitors, and most importantly, earn revenue. Wealthy Affiliate was created by Kyle and Carson, who in 2005, launched the Wealthy Affiliate platform to help other people succeed online. Since then Wealthy Affiliate community has grown to over 800,000 internet entrepreneurs. 
Wirecutter's affiliate program might make you doubt the legitimacy of Wirecutter's recommendations -- but, in fact, it's quite the opposite. Wirecutter only makes commission when a reader purchases a product from an affiliate retailer and doesn't return the product. Wirecutter, then, has no incentive to promote inferior products -- if they did, they'd make less money and turn away readers.
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