The ultimate guide on how to start affiliate marketing absolutely for free
I’ve got something pretty awesome for you today… I’m going to show you how to start affiliate marketing without you having to spend a single cent. So if you’re looking for a solid way to get started with affiliate marketing without breaking the bank, you’ve just found it.
Just like you, every single day, droves of people search the internet hoping to find a way to make money online. Very often, they have a plethora of reasons for wanting to do so – ranging from wanting to quit their day job to having more money for the finer things in life.
One common thread that binds most of them is that they’re often on a tight budget… and this is probably the reason why they want to get into affiliate marketing to boost their income.
Newbie marketers are often told that they’ll need to purchase their own domain, pay for hosting, fork out even more cash for auto-responder fees, and so on. It’s almost as if they need money to make money.
While motivational gurus keep posting bold statements such as, “It’s not about your resources, but your resourcefulness…”, the harsh truth is that you can’t multiply by zero. You’ll need money to pay for different fixed and recurring costs in your business. That’s a fact, and there’s no way around it.
If that means getting a second job to earn extra to pay for your business, you may have to do it – and that is resourcefulness, but ultimately you still need cold, hard cash.
However, if you’re financially strapped and can’t possibly get a second job because your first one is almost working you into an early grave, there are a couple of ways to start with affiliate marketing, and they are absolutely free of charge.
Anyway, with that said…here’s what you should do
Step 1: Get yourself a free website
There are several platforms that will allow you to have a free website. The catch here is that you’ll have no control over the advertising that appears on your site. Another risk is that you’ll need to conform to the rules of the platform however inane they may seem.
If they feel like you’ve flouted their rules, they could boot you out unceremoniously without giving you any notice. Countless newbie marketers have lost their businesses overnight by ‘building their houses on rented land’.
So, your goal is to build a free website and once you’re generating sales, you should immediately buy your own domain and hosting so that you’re in control of your business.
Here are a couple of platforms you can use:
Medium doesn’t allow you to build your own site, instead it allows you to post articles on their platform. That’s really all you need for now.
Medium gets a lot of traffic and has potential when it comes to ranking for low hanging keywords that you may wish to target. From there, it’s just a matter of publishing more targeted articles and getting affiliate sales.
Focus on the following types of articles:
- How to articles
- List articles
- Review articles
- Case studies
If you need more help with writing engaging blog posts, you’ll find it over here:
>>> Top 5 article types to focus on for your blog posts <<<
Step 2: Grab your affiliate links
It should be free to join most affiliate programs on places like ClickBank, Amazon Associates, CJ Affiliate, ShareASale, Rakuten Marketing and so on. Go ahead and sign up and get your links.
Forget programs that require you to ‘pay to play’ – where you need to have a monthly paid subscription to the software/service/etc. before they bestow upon you the dubious honor of being able to promote their products.
There are tons of excellent affiliate products that you can promote for free without having to jump through hoops.
You might want to check out a post on this exact topic that I wrote a while ago:
>>> Top 10 best affiliate programs to make money <<<
Step 3: Getting free traffic to your offers
Since money is tight, paid ads are definitely not an option here. The next best way to generate traffic to your pages will be to siphon it from high traffic social media sites and platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Google.
It’s important to know that free traffic takes time. You’ll not generate massive traffic overnight. You’ll need to create content consistently and almost daily to get reach and traction.
If your content is valuable and top-notch, you’ll build a following and have people clicking on your affiliate links or article links. So, go ahead and create accounts in the different social media platforms and…
- Start making videos with your mobile phone, laptop or computer and post them on YouTube
- Set up a Facebook group and a fan page and start posting content
- Write articles on your niche and post them on Medium
- Share all your articles/videos/etc. on every social network you’ve signed up for
- Use Canva.com to come up with eye catching images you can use. (It’s free!)
Once again, it’s important to remember that social media sites are not your web properties, so you’re never totally safe with them.
The goal is to always generate sales until you have enough money to build your own website and list. These are YOUR assets.
If you’re not comfortable creating videos with your face or voice on camera, there are several alternatives around this:
- You could create videos using copyright free images or videos from websites such as, Pixabay.com and Pexels.com.
- You can create voiceovers for your video with free online tools such as, Natural Readers.com and Voicemaker.in
- Edit your videos with the free tool that came with your device, such as Windows Movie Maker, or do a Google search and choose one of the many free online video editors.
As you can see, there really is NO excuse for you not making videos, and siphon free traffic from YouTube.
Putting it all together
A way to start will be to write and start posting useful articles on Medium (you’ll embed your affiliate links in the posts). Just remember to disclose affiliate links and DO NOT overdo it. Moderation is key here.
As long as your content is good, you’ll have curious readers clicking on your links and reaching the sales page of the product you’re promoting… which is your main objective.
Point your YouTube videos, Facebook posts, tweets, etc. to your Medium article, so that you can pre-sell the reader by providing more information and value. Once you build trust with your audience, your chances of getting the sale will be much higher.
Your Medium account with all your content will act as a hub-site for your affiliate marketing business. The free traffic methods you employ will siphon traffic from different platforms and point them all to your hub site’s content… just like how all roads lead to Rome.
Then it’s just a matter of time for the traffic to convert into sales (if your content is valuable and persuasive).
Your next steps
Keep on publishing content until you start seeing sales trickle in. Give yourself 6 to 12 months to see your efforts yield fruit. This is a slow process, but a rewarding one.
Once you see the commissions coming in, do invest in your business by getting your own domain, hosting and an auto-responder. Being able to build your own mailing list will help to elevate your marketing to the next level and skyrocket your commissions.