Top 7 Major Affiliate Marketing Mistakes

Affiliate marketing is one of the best online business models. It is my personal favorite. I got my start in affiliate marketing all the way back in 2011. I remember finding it overwhelming as a newcomer and made some mistakes along the way.

Mistakes are a part of running an online business. The most important thing is learning from your mistakes. That being said, these are the mistakes that I’ve made and many beginners to affiliate marketing will probably make. If I had to do it all over again, these are the major affiliate marketing mistakes I will avoid.

Mistake No 1: Thinking You Will Get Rich by the End of the Week

I remember when I first got into affiliate marketing, I was really excited. I thought I was going to be rich in my first month. The truth is of course far from that. I know I said affiliate marketing is the best way to start an online business but it’s not the fastest way to make money.

When it does make money though, it pays for all your hard work and some.

Traffic = Money

Before you can build a ton of traffic to you site, you have to build a website, create quality content on a regular basis, and a lot of learning.

Money comes later in affiliate marketing. So having the patience to see it through is very important.

If you are dead-broke right now, I don’t recommend jumping into affiliate marketing or any type of business to pay your bills. Your first priority should be to secure an income that you can rely on and to work on affiliate marketing as a side business.

Mistake No 2: Worrying too Much About Aesthetics

Arghhh… This was my biggest problem when I started. I worried too much about the colors of my website theme, how the text looked, how my menus looked, what are the best plugins to have, what widgets I should get.

I now understand that these are not important.

These aren’t going to take my business forward. And as a new website, the most important thing I should be doing is creating content. Remember – Content is king. It is the key ingredient of an affiliate business.

You can always make your website prettier later. Write up the content first and do the aesthetics improvements after that.

Mistake No 3: Too Much Selling and Not Enough Helping

This is something a lot of new marketers make. We are marketers, it is in the name, Affiliate Marketing. But, we have to remember that we are selling to people.

People are only going to buy if the product is going to help them in some way. To make their life better.

Your first priority with your website is to help someone solve a problem. Not sell.

The sales page when they click the affiliate link will do the selling part.

So don’t try to force it on them. If the product you’re promoting is good quality and you are honest and helpful with your content, sales will come.

Always ask yourself this when you create content, Would you purchase it based on your review if you were the customer?

Mistake No 4: Writing For Google, Not people

Search Engine Optimization or SEO is a key part of affiliate marketing. Search engines are a major part of affiliate marketing as they decide if your website is worth the top spots of their keyword results.

There was a time when some marketers used spun content, copy and paste content and got away with it. Not anymore! Don’t try to cheat Google. If you do that, it will only last sometime before your website is punished.

If you want to be an affiliate marketer as a way to genuinely help people and earn a living, as all affiliate marketers should aspire to be. Then don’t write for search engines. If you do the right thing by your audience, your website and the content you make will be valuable for years and years to come.

Writing regular, quality content goes a long way in this business.

Mistake No 5: Not Maintaining Quality

This goes without saying. Don’t try to fill up your website with content just to make it look like a matured website.

Quality over quantity. It takes time to build a business. Don’t rush it. You do need regular content but half-written blog posts are just a total waste of time.

When adding affiliate products to your website, make sure they are products that you would buy or have bought yourself.

Don’t add products to your site just because they pay the biggest commissions or have better perks.

You have to believe in the product. If it’s not a quality product or service, don’t add it to your site. Simple.

Your brand is way more important than the few bucks you’ll make. You want your business to last for years to come and to build a relationship with your audience so they purchase from you.

Mistake No 6: Not learning

Affiliate marketing has evolved from its beginning and it continues to evolve. Being in this industry for more than 10 years now, I see that some of the tricks that some affiliate marketers used just don’t work anymore.

Here’s some that I remember:

  • Trash backlinks
  • Keyword stuffing
  • Leveraging article directories
  • Writing quick 300 word articles
  • Using link directories

I remember people teaching these techniques back in the day. I even see some teaching these outdated, useless tactics now.

These don’t work anymore.

To stay on top of the best ways to do affiliate marketing and to be up to date with the latest changes, be part of an online platform that teaches legitimate up to date information on affiliate marketing.

I recommend Wealthy Affiliate. It is the platform that taught me the right way to do affiliate marketing. Guess what? I’m still part of that community 10 years later.

Mistake No 7: Giving Up

Like I mentioned at the beginning, affiliate marketing isn’t going to make you rich overnight. You’re not going to get a lot of traffic at the beginning. You have to build it slowly.

You made the right choice to get into affiliate marketing and learn about it. Now just commit yourself for the next year or 2 years. Realize good things take time, your website requires time to mature.

If you constantly add quality content regularly, You will see the traffic numbers rise.

Don’t be the one that quits 5 months into it. Those people that quit around that stage probably didn’t realize that their success was just around the corner. I’ve seen some websites have low traffic volume for months and then around the 8th month just have a hockey stick growth. Search engines need time to realize that you are a reliable authority in your chose niche.

So don’t be a quitter.


I was thinking today about a good post to write about. I thought why not write about the mistakes I made or the questions and doubts I had when I started this journey.

Affiliate marketing is a business model. It is a lucrative business model that works and it is something that can bring you financial freedom.

There was a time I thought, I’m not a good writer, I can’t do this.

But I never gave up. To be honest I was never amazing at writing essays or good at English in general at school. But, here I am writing articles on my own site.

I’m not a perfect writer. I never will be. You don’t have to be perfect to do something. As long as you are genuine and you get the message across and you genuinely help people then success will follow.

Spread the love

Leave a Comment