Home Lessons & Videos Introduction Affiliate Marketing Without a Website

Affiliate Marketing Without a Website

Affilorama members only


Watch a preview Join for free

Affiliate Marketing Without a Website

2008-09-11 11:06:52

Building a website is the most common way affiliates launch themselves into the affiliate marketing world, and if you're interested in creating a long-term business you'll inevitably need to put together a website.

However, if you're still learning about web design or you're simply not interested in building a website, there are other ways to get your affiliate links out there, so this lesson will teach you Affiliate Marketing Without a Website.

Remember: the key with affiliate marketing is get your affiliate link in front of an interested audience - how you choose to do that is completely up to you! With that in mind, here are a few methods you could try:

#1: Post on blogs and forums

This is a really simple way of getting a taste for affiliate marketing - all you have to do is find a product you'd like to promote, then start posting on blogs and forums with your affiliate link in your signature.

Here's an example from our very own forum: you can see that this member has an affiliate link in their signature. He's also made himself an active and respected members of the forum.


Of course you should only post on blogs and forums where people would be interested in the product - you're not going to get many bites for a dog training affiliate product when you're posting on a classic car enthusiast forum.

Similarly, you’ll find that you have a lot more success if you're making useful and interesting posts and if you become a regular on the site. Once you have established yourself people will begin to respect your opinion and will be more inclined to click on your link. If you simply spam a blog or forum with useless posts you’re likely to be banned and your posts deleted.

#2: Write a viral eBook or some other "viral" product

A “viral” product is one that is designed to spread (often quickly) to a great many people - this can be a great way of getting your affiliate links out there without ever having to create a website. You can produce a short 30-page eBook or a "special report" on a particular subject, insert links to affiliate products into it, then distribute your book through whatever means you like – you could tell people that they're welcome to give it away, sell it or put it on their websites. You can kick it off yourself by selling the eBook on eBay for a small amount.

If your book is informative and useful, rather than simply laden with affiliate ads, you might find that it spreads quite well.

#3: Create a YouTube series

YouTube has taken the world by storm with one billion unique visitors per month. You can use this to your advantage. It doesn’t take much more than a webcam and some quirky or informative ideas to get a channel going. That way you can add affiliate links into your description, or over your video, and convert some of that fan base into affiliate profits.


Just pick a niche and create a video series related to that topic, with a related affiliate promotion. That way, the viewers you get will be a lot more likely to be interested in the affiliate product, as they already have some interest to be watching the video in the first place. 

There are two main rules for doing this, however, that you MUST abide by: 

  1. The content has to be full of value for viewers. Financial gain has to be secondary to this. 
    If your video is obviously just there for you to make money from a link, you will get listed as spam, and your efforts will become useless. Producing something worthwhile is a lot more successful, and you get the attention and respect of potential customers that way.
  2. Don’t be misleading! 
    If your video is unrelated to your link, or your title or description claims something that isn’t in the video, you are violating YouTube’s policies. This is also something to avoid.

Basically, video marketing on YouTube can be a risk, because affiliate links can get listed as spam, but the best way to avoid this is just to be up front, honest, and useful. Avoid spammy behaviours. Some quality content options could include:

  • Honest, informative product reviews
  • Instructional videos (e.g., if your niche was food and nutrition, you could do cooking demos)
  • Topical discussions (e.g., tips for keeping food fresh, or interesting nutritional facts)

Just have one link in the description, and possibly one over the video if it’s extremely relevant (such as a product review video). If you want to be especially careful, note somewhere that you’re an affiliate or that the link is an affiliate link, and contact YouTube to check that you’ll be in the clear. If your videos have value for the viewer, and that stands out more than your money making efforts, this shouldn’t be a problem. 

#4: Write ads or reviews for classifieds websites

You're probably already familiar with using sites like Craigslist to look for old furniture or car parts, but you can also use classifieds sites to promote affiliate products. Consider writing ads or reviews for affiliate products and posting them with your affiliate link.

Some sites you might want to try are:

#5: Build a "Hub"

Building a "Hub" is a great way of getting started as an affiliate without needing to build your own website from scratch. A Hub is like a 1-page mini website where you can talk about a subject you're passionate about (eg, your affiliate market and associated products!). It's hosted on the HubPages site, and you don't need to know anything about web design to make it look fairly professional.

A Hub allows you to build a page on a topic, insert ads, reviews and other content as you please, all without having to write any HTML.

The best part, though, is that HubPages is also part social-networking site, so simply by being on HubPages you will begin to attract traffic interested in your topic and looking for recommendations. HubPages is especially easy to monetize, and Hubs have tended in the past to do pretty well in the search engines.

To sign up and start creating your Hub, visit HubPages.

#6: Promote affiliate products directly through pay-per-click advertisements

We've left this method for last because, quite frankly, it's not one we recommend. This method involves creating pay-per-click campaigns through search engines like Google and Bing, and promoting the merchant website directly through your affiliate link.

So instead of using PPC to promote your own website, you send them straight to the merchant.

There are a number of downsides to this method.

  1. First, with Google's AdWords in particular, there will only be one paid listing for a particular website displayed at any given time. This means that instead of competing against other advertisers for one of eight spots on the page, you're competing for just one spot. If you bid a large amount and write an attractive ad then you might see your ad displayed, otherwise you can forget it.
  2. Secondly, you have no control over the quality of the merchant page. Increasingly the search engines are looking at the page you're promoting and deciding whether this offers a good experience for their users. If the merchant site has little content, or poor quality content, you could end up paying a much higher amount for your advertisements.

There are always new affiliates who see this as a fast and easy way to get started, but we really recommend that you try the other methods we've introduced first.

Lesson Summary:

In this lesson you’ve learned some ways of getting your affiliate link out in front of an audience without having to build a website, such as...

  • Posting on blogs and forums
  • Writing a viral eBook or some other "viral" product
  • Creating a YouTube video series
  • Writing ads or reviews for classifieds websites
  • Building a "Hub"
  • Promoting affiliate products directly through pay-per-click advertisements


Learn something new? Share it with your friends!


Questions & Comments + Add a comment

Help me to member
Reply Heather Robinson1836 days ago
Is Squido still a valid option? You don'the hear much about it anymore.
Melissa Johnson1835 days ago
Hi, Heather!

Squidoo and Hubpages merged in the latter part of 2014, so it's just Hubpages now.
Lab 909 days ago
I would like to know as an affiliate if I can use the articles of the owner (vendor) and put it in a PDF format and insert my affiliate link inside then sell it for few dollars such as clickbank products articles? Can someone help please!
Justin Golschneider908 days ago
Hi Lab! Generally, a book or article must be copyrighted under your name for you to sell digital copies, so you would most likely not be allowed to do that. At the very least, you would need the vendor's permission—and I'd get it signed on paper.
Reply Dave 1827 days ago
Is it proper for an affiliate to write an ebook on an affiliate product.Won't the merchant frown at it
Gina Broom1826 days ago
The idea is to create an eBook on a similar topic to the product you're promoting, rather than the product itself. Then to link to that product within.

For example, if your product was a weight loss one, you'd write an eBook on a weight loss topic like, "How to Lose Fat Without Exercise" or something like that, and then in the footer of the eBook you'd have a link, as well as one or two relevant places in the content.

"As diet is the most important factor for weight loss without excessive, you'll need a good one like the "X diet"."

So the book isn't about the affiliate product, just mentions it. Hope this helps! :)
Reply 1746 days ago
How do I get started writing an eBook?
Melissa Johnson1744 days ago
Hi, Lisa!

There are a lot of ways to handle writing. First, you obviously need a topic and content. You can write it yourself or outsource it to someone on a platform like oDesk or Elance, or find another writer -- you might know someone in person, for example. Once the book is written, you can either turn it into a PDF and distribute it yourself, or you can use something like Amazon's self publishing platform on Kindle to release your e-book.

Hope that helps!
Reply Patrick 1652 days ago
Interesting article.

However, I noticed most networks don't register affiliates until they show a clear website in the niche they intend to work in. I do believe SMM and SEM to be very effective and flexible to work on multiple products in a variety of niches (if merchants' landing pages are good).

Can you recommend any leading networks that accept affiliates without insisting on a pre-existing marketing website or blog?
Gina Broom1646 days ago
Hi Patrick,

Clickbank is pretty easy and straightforward so I'd suggest that first. Then you could check out these alternatives to Clickbank: https://www.affilorama.com/market-research/10-alternatives-to-clickbank

I know that some require a website to get started but the best thing to do in that case is contact their affiliate manager, preferably by phone. Explain your promotional methods, and you might find that they'll accept you.

Hope that helps. :)
- Gina
Reply Steven Lucas1630 days ago
I enjoy writing but keep forgetting that I should include affiliate links within my ebooks.

I have found though the the best looking ebooks only have a few links rather than being stuffed full on every page. However, if they're kept short this isn't usually a problem. A 6 to 10 page book (400-500 words per page or less with images) with one link per page isn't too bad.

I've got to get more into making my own videos too. So far I've only done cartoon presentation ones. And i've got to make them less 'salesy' too. LOL.

Loving what I'm seeing on Afilorama. Gonna be my new favourite place!


Steven Lucas
Reply andrea 1573 days ago
Thank you Melissa! This information is super useful and expertly presented!
Reply Flora Gigi1564 days ago
I am as broke as a church mouse , where do I begin the journey of affiliate marketing. I am strongly believing that I will make it with the help of affilorama. but I have $0.00 funds to begin with, is there at her way that can help me raise little funds?
Melissa Johnson1561 days ago
Hi, Florah!

You're in the right place. I strongly recommend that you go through our free training courses. While, as this lesson points out, you can market without a website, it's a lot easier to be an affiliate with a great web presence and a website at its heart. Fortunately, the costs for that are minimal. You need a domain (which you can purchase for several years at a time) and hosting (which you can pay yearly or month to month in a lot of cases).

I do recommend brushing up on a few skills, though. Namely, I suggest teaching yourself a little bit about design and how to make a web page look attractive. It doesn't have to be fancy, but it does have to look professional. Wix, Weebly, WordPress, and most other website builders have templates to choose from that will make it attractive and you just have to tweak a few details. Knowing the basics and choosing an easy-to-use website builder will save you the costs of having to hire a designer. Apps like Canva and Fotor can also help you create beautiful images with text and decorative elements, and they're inexpensive, if not free.

I also suggest brushing up on your writing skills. Content is absolutely crucial to affiliate marketing -- you need to be turning out good information. You can curate some of it, but you need some original works to establish yourself. Outsourcing is an option, but you've said that your budget is currently $0.00, so it's not a good one. =) You can also ask a friend who is good at writing for help, and maybe negotiate some sort of alternative payment -- maybe even a share of profits. Fortunately, we have resources to help you with content creation, and there are plenty of other great tools online to help you master everything from the mechanics of writing to figuring out the kinds of content you should make.

People have turned to all sorts of interesting ways to make some side cash, from selling things on eBay (a lot start with items they have around the house that they don't use) to freelancing or selling arts and crafts. Sites like Upwork.com let you work on your own time for a bit of side money, so if you have a really strong skill set you can use to help others, that's one way. If you're crafty, you could start selling your wares from home -- tap your network of friends and associates. For example, a friend of mine makes diaper wreaths for baby showers. they're super cute and make great gifts. If you can get the person buying the item to get the materials, or pay in advance, you don't need to shell out much up front, if any.

Then, it's just a matter of SAVE, SAVE, SAVE until you have what you need to cover start-up expenses.

Those are just my thoughts on some ways to make some cash. you can also talk to other affiliates and our support staff if you visit the forums: https://www.affilorama.com/forum/

I hope this helps! Good luck!
Reply Peaches 1525 days ago
Hi. Is there a way that I can affiliate market without having a website?
I have software where I auto dial leads and direct them to the link. I have an affiliate link. How would that work> I am basically calling them and directing them to a link. Do I need a website for this or could they just go to the link? How can I make this work? Help.
GOD bless you for your help.
Melissa Johnson1524 days ago
Hi there!

Autodialing leads is not an approach we recommend for affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is all about building trust, and content is key to that. Which means you really need a website to serve as a hub for everything you create, and as a place to build your email list.

However, we do have a couple products that will make getting started much, much easier! There's AffiloBlueprint, which will show you step by step what to do (https://www.affilorama.com/affiloblueprint) and AffiloJetpack, which gives you the roadmap plus everything else you need.
Reply Amarbir Singh Sandhu1514 days ago
Can I also place my affiliate links on various social media platforms such as facebook,twitter,google+,etc by mixing it up with topic of discussion.For eg:- If the topic of discussion is "Weight Loss" I could tell my views about it & then slip-in the affiliate link with the comment.Would that work?If no then is there any other way of promoting other people's product on "Social Media".
Melissa Johnson1509 days ago
Hi, Amarbir!

Every social network is going to have to its own guidelines and rules -- same with affiliate programs. You'll have to look into the guidelines and specific requirements.

Something else to consider is the FTC guideline mandating that you disclose that you're an affiliate.

So while yes, you could theoretically run an affiliate marketing offer from social media only, you're better off building a website and then building social media pages to reflect your branding. Content and building trust are really important, and so having a website that serves as a central location for articles, offers, and an email signups can be quite important.
Reply Amarbir Singh Sandhu1513 days ago
Hi is there anyway I could promote people's products on social media like Facebook and Twitter and google+,etc without having to build a website.
Reply Tina 1428 days ago

I just found your site and the information is very enlightening. I had no idea there was such a variety of ways to utilize affiliate marketing without having to go through creating a website.

Thank you so much for sharing :-)

Reply dmcqpu1420 days ago

Can you please give me an example on how to post to blogs with my affiliate link in my signature?

Many thanks!
Melissa Johnson1417 days ago
Hi there!

IF you take a look at #1 in the list, you'll see an image of a signature that has an affiliate link in it. The image is also linked here:

Unfortunately, platforms tend to vary from one to the other, so your affiliate link will look different on each. It's kind of hard to say. Just make sure you follow the guidelines given to you when you join the community.
Reply Ekaphonh Nanda1256 days ago
Is there a legit website like Blast4Traffic where I can send affiliate link to people by emails. I heard that Blast4Traffic is not a good website to use for sending emails. THXs!
Reply jad 1166 days ago
I'have a content for a viral ebook but i still don't know how compile this content from word to an ebook, i have made some research so may be i' will need html editor, ebook compiler and ebook cover generatorso can give some links and ressources.Thanks in adavance
Melissa Johnson1166 days ago
You can find assistance in getting your eBook together by hiring a freelancer on sites such as Upwork.com and Fiverr.com.

Hope that helps!
Reply Jubayer hossain1137 days ago
I have a domain all in here. I want to use it for affiliate marketing. But I don't understand which niche should I promote. Domain name is all in here because I wanted my blog for all niche. Please suggest me what should I do now?
N:B- I have been working as internet marketer since 2010 but never tried to do this. As I can promote any blog in any niche now, that's why I want to start affiliate marketing. Please suggest me.
Reply Bobbi 1068 days ago
Could the use of social media be effective
Justin Golschneider1065 days ago
Hi Bobbi! Generally, social media platforms forbid the use of affiliate links and will ban you if they notice you posting them. Social media is great for driving traffic to sites where you have your affiliate links, but not for promoting affiliate products directly.
Reply Laurie Bullard1022 days ago
I've actually been around awhile but learned something new. Hub Pages, yes I had heard of Squidoo but never looked into it. Always built sites. Now I just want a page (have one on Blogger) but a Hub page might not still be my best option. Blogger is ok but truly want a WP magazine theme with a page similar to http://brendanmace.com Brilliant marketer and a great friend. Is there a way to get this done through Affilorama? I know HTML, JS, CSS, can edit PHP but am lost in a 3rd world country when it comes to WordPress! I have a few domain which only the Blogger one is up. That's why I am backing up to the basics, as I have THOUSANDS of Social Media Followers...yet I still have no email list. So please any answers on the WP issue and I am here to learn gain as much as possible to share with and help others.

Laurie Bullard
Lab Media Group
Justin Golschneider1021 days ago
Hi Laurie! You can build a site that looks pretty similar with AffiloTheme: https://www.affilorama.com/affilotheme

AffiloTheme users can get help from our support team, too. :-) Hope that helps!
Reply Elias Jireis958 days ago
Nice article, but I think you missed the most important one: Email Marketing.
With an autoresponder like GetResponse you will have free landing page (So, no website/hosting fees required) templates that you can use to make people optin, then followup with your subscribers with various offers and affiliate links.
Reply skinskin4u935 days ago
Intresting video I have one question do you know of any alternatives to hubpages?

Justin Golschneider935 days ago
Hello! Unfortunately, websites like HubPages are pretty much all dead. The way the Internet has evolved has made this kind of site largely unviable today.
Reply Aliyev 924 days ago
A very useful post, thank you!
Reply Muntazir 819 days ago
Niche forums are forums based on a very specific topic. There is a new mother forums, Superb Answer Forum. Doesn’t get more niche than that! Pick forums based on the affiliate links you are promoting and follow the tips below.

1.Signature Links

Create a profile, and use your affiliate link in your signature. Like this guy did…

2. Be A Good Community Member

Forums are not the place for you to anonymously promote affiliate links. People have to know you before they will trust your recommendations. Otherwise, they will ban you. Therefore, you need to be a good community member before you start being all spammy. Start by commenting intelligently on different topics in the forum.

Once you get familiar with the climate of the forum, drop a “I want to give back to the community” thread. DO NOT self-promote all in up the thread – no one cares about your affiliate links, but they will take free advice. At the end let everyone know that if they are interested in learning more to drop you a question in the thread to PM you.

Then they see that link in your signature AND you can hit them with Affiliate link solutions.

3. Ask For Reviews

Create a thread asking the community for advice about an affiliate link that you are posting! This is sneaky, so dont use it often.

For instance, create a thread asking if anyone has used a particular product, and include a link to that product. After everyone has finished commenting, make your last comment something like “Thanks everybody! I just bought it based on the advice here and I love it!” Other people will see this and use that same link.
Reply ray 706 days ago
Helpful article! Are the viral mailing lists such as Adchiever.com a worthy option? They are free for the most part but I doubt they can be successful since people only use them to send their own ads. Have any of you had any success using the viral mailing lists?
Reply dmcqpu628 days ago
Would love to know if these strategies still work in 2018?
Reply Mikkey 612 days ago
Can I post affiliate link in Facebook groups ?
Reply Dalip Singh606 days ago
Hi I would love to create a website and drive traffic to it. I have one nag which ever domain name I think of it is either taken by who genuinely owns and runs it or dormant ones which I have to pay higher amount. How can I get over this. Is there a website that helps you with your venture. All help appreciated.

Then I will be able to put in some great affiliates I have come across aiming to make passive income.
Reply Dalip Singh604 days ago
Are there any sites that can help someone in deciding a website name that hasn't been taken.
Reply Tavie David Okolobi365 days ago
Very informative.
Which is better: affiliate marketing with a website or without a website?
cecille.l361 days ago
Affiliate marketing with a website requires a bit more investment in both time and money as you need to build a website but it does allow you to do affiliate marketing in your own space in the world wide web for a longer period of time.

Affiliate marketing without a website is a lot more challenging these days because not a lot of websites allow affiliate marketing links.

All the best!
Reply skinskin4u200 days ago
Hello great website learning a lot of stuff one question i do have is

Do you know of any other sites like hubpages?

Keep up the good work.

Essential Resources Every New Affiliate Marketer Needs

Don't forget to follow us!

More topics

Essential Resources Every New Affilia... New to affiliate marketing? Not sure what it's all about? Then let us get you started!
Affiliate Outsourcing No one person can do everything on their own. Learn how to reduce (or even eliminate!) your workload with outsourcing.
Site Building As an affiliate, chances are you'll end up building a website or two. Here's your basic quickstart!
Marketing Ideas Needing inspiration? Wanting to go outside the box? Take a look in here for your next few marketing ideas!
Market Research for Affiliate Marketers To be a successful affiliate you must learn how to research their market before dedicating your precious time.
Pay Per Click Pay-per-click is one major method affiliates use to get traffic. Learn what it is and how you can use it effectively!
Search Engine Optimization Search engine optimization (SEO) is a major way of getting traffic to your site at minimal cost! Learn how to put it ...
Content Creation This section is all about content: How to write it, how to get it written for you, and other useful goodies!