How NOT To Do Affiliate Marketing Without A Website

It is possible. It's totally possible to do affiliate marketing without building a website. The question - whether it's feasible or not - depends on what kind of affiliate you want to be, the products you want to promote, what kind of profit level you want to take it to, and why you are so adamant about creating a website. The alternative ways you are thinking of may be more costly and rather more time-consuming.

Let's take a look at some of the affiliate marketing methods that may not require a website.

How NOT To Do Affiliate Marketing Without A Website

#1 YouTube

Can you do without a website?

Can you make money?

Is it cost effective?

Easy to start?

Overall feasibility

YouTube is the second largest search engine with 2 billion monthly active users. It's also said that some 8,000 YouTube channels have more than 1 million subscribers in 2019. Means it's extremely popular, hence competitive. And without a doubt, it's one of the best ways to make money without having to create a website.

You can promote specific products as an affiliate by placing your link in the description box underneath each video. Also the Partner Program allows you to make money from advertisements. To be eligible to join the program, you need to have more than 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 public watch hours in the last 12 months. Things to consider will be;

  • You can start virtually free (smartphone + free editor) but you will want decent, professional tools along the way. It means there will be a cost, also technical skill and a video editing skill will be required.
  • Instead of publishing old written blog posts, you can spend all your available time on YouTube marketing. But content marketing takes medium/long term efforts. You need to build a good SEO knowledge.

#2 Email Marketing

Can you do without a website?

Can you make money?

Is it cost effective?

Easy to start?

Overall feasibility

Email marketing without a website actually "does not make sense".

Technically you can start email marketing without a website, but it's a catch-22 for several reasons. Because;

Reason 1: You need a lead capture page

Lead Capture Page Example

Lead capture page example

You need to have a list of leads (=subscribers) to run your email marketing campaigns. To build a list you need a lead capture page where a subscription form is in place. ("Enter your email address and discover the secrets NOW!" kind of thing, for example.) That's the first step. The second step is to send traffic to that page, by buying traffic or using advertisements.

It is possible to buy a list of subscribers from someone (in a CSV file or text file) and import the list to your email marketing account. The problem is that the list is unlikely to be responsive. The email addresses you buy can be (a) outdated (b) bots and (c) fake. Even if they're real, the recipients haven't agreed to receive emails from you, means you'll be officially a spammer. For that reason, any email marketing services are reluctant to allow users to import purchased lists.

Reason 2: You need a custom domain email address

Even if you don't have a website and manage to import a purchase list of subscribers, you should still buy a domain name to start your email marketing, because a free email address such as Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoomail is often seen as spammy. It means your newsletter campaigns sent from a free email will likely to land in the recipients' spam folder.

For that reason, email marketing service providers strongly recommend you to buy a domain name (e.g. cybercashworldwide.com) and create an email address under the domain (e.g. hello@cybercashworldwide.com, admin@cybercashworldwide.com).

And once you have your domain name, you might as well build a website, at least a lead capture page.

Here's good news - GetResponse, one of the most popular email marketing services offers a free landing page builder.

Reason 3: You need to show who you are

Nobody may be interested in who you are or what you do, and you may not particularly want to introduce yourself to them. All you want is for them to buy your affiliate products. But at least they should be entitled to know who they're receiving their emails from. You should also have space to display your affiliate disclaimer to protect your position legally. Your campaign email should have a link to your website, really.

Reason 4: Amazon doesn't allow you

Amazon Associates is one of the greatest affiliate programs, allowing you to promote almost any products from its huge catalog. The problem is that Amazon doesn't allow you to place your affiliate link on your email. The only way is to recommend your chosen products on your webpage first. Then place a link to that page in your email, so that your subscribers will visit your page. Then hopefully they'll click your affiliate link on your page to be directed to the Amazon product page.

Building a list of leads will cost you, and you'll only get to learn how to build a 'quality' list through trials and errors. Once you get it rolling, you can make decent money from affiliate commissions - providing you have a website!

#3 Social Media Marketing (No Paid Ads)

Can you do without a website?

Can you make money?

Is it cost effective?

Easy to start?

Overall feasibility

Pretty straightforward - you can start placing your affiliate link on your social network feeds right now. But whether you'll make any money or not is the question. Frankly, you won't.

You may have heard this a thousand times - social media marketing is all about 'engagement' and 'trust relationship' with your followers. If you're successful in that area, you're probably not reading this. Quite a few things to consider:

  • Build your followers, which will take time.
  • Use hashtags wisely.
  • Everyone's doing it, means it's insanely competitive, so you need to find unique products and unique marketing methods to stand out from the crowd.
  • Ideally, you should have a website (!) and display the URL on your profile, so that your new followers know who you are and what your business is.
  • Facebook doesn't allow affiliate links - again, you'd have to have a website, let them visit your page first and direct them to your affiliate page.

#4 Create An Ebook

Can you do without a website?

Can you make money?

Is it cost effective?

Easy to start?

Overall feasibility

The first thing that comes to both your mind and my mind would be, if you could write an ebook, why would you resist the idea of building a website so much?

But surprisingly, ebooks can sell.

Kindle Sales

3 years ago I published 2 x 'how-to' ebooks under a pseudonym via Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing, each one for no more than $5. I struggled to sell, soon I got bored of trying to sell. But to this date, a few copies sell every other month or so. Kindle allows you to place affiliate links within your ebook, and I make small commissions here & there.

It may sound like such a tiny passive income that barely pays towards bills, but I haven't done anything to help them sell for at least the past 2.5 years. I can't even remember the title of the books! (A little unfaithful to the valued buyers) At least this proves that publishing an ebook is one way for you to try.

#5 PPC (Pay-Per-Click) Ads and Traffic Services

Can you do without a website?

Can you make money?

Is it cost effective?

Easy to start?

Overall feasibility

First of all, Google (Adwords) or Facebook Business don't allow you to advertise your affiliate sites directly. So they're out of the window.

Anyway, here's the diamond rule - don't ever use pay-per-click services (including solo ad traffic) to promote your affiliate page directly, that would be suicidal. A little over-exaggerating? Okay, that'd be a total waste of money.

You see what I mean, people hardly ever make a purchase on the spot. They click your display link and see your affiliate page. They may be interested, they may even love the product on the page, but how many of them would actually get their credit card out and buy it as if it's now or never? Almost none of them will take such action. They'll think about it, they might bookmark the page if they're really impressed by the particular product. But that'll be extremely rare.

And each time a user clicks the display link, you'll be paying whatever cents you agreed to pay.

So if you consider using a paid service, the link should be to your lead capture page, so that the users will opt in (i.e. become your subscribers), so that you can promote your affiliate pages by email marketing repeatedly in the future.

#6 Forums and Q&A Sites

Can you do without a website?

Can you make money?

Is it cost effective?

Easy to start?

Overall feasibility

Well, think about it. Forum sites and Q&A sites exist only for one reason - for users to exchange useful information! Many of these sites (including Quora) prohibit you from placing an affiliate link in your post as part of their anti-spam policy.

And if they do allow, the forum space is often a dog-eat-dog world. Other affiliates are already furiously promoting their products. No one takes anyone else seriously but themselves trying to sell. Because of that, it can be hard to find genuinely helpful threads that don't contain spammy messages such as "Hey, I've been using this (product) for 2 weeks now and the results are amazing! https://bit.ly..." which, no one else would acknowledge of.

For that reason, is it worth finding a relevant forum thread and post your affiliate message just because you want to avoid creating a website for whatever the reason? No, I don't think it is, personally.

How NOT To Do Affiliate Marketing Without A Website

YouTube is without a doubt, one of the best places for content marketing to make money as an affiliate. If you are confident to speak in front of a camera and don't fancy building your website, definitely worth starting a YouTube marketing.

Other methods - not so much. As you can see, there are quite a few opportunities that you'd have to miss out if you don't have your own website. So to summarize, owning a website can give you benefits such as;

  • Increases your trust level as a marketer (even with YouTube marketing).
  • Provides detailed information about your business portfolio.
  • Allows you to generate leads.
  • Allows you to use paid advertisements.
  • Allows you to promote products from Amazon.

Building a website is not as hard as you think, and it's always handy to have one at least per niche. If you're on a budget and create one, this page might interest you: How To Build A Sales Funnel On A Budget.

What I use is Wealthy Affiliate hosting services - just over $350 per year, I can create up to 50 websites and have them hosted at no cost. Not all my sites are for content marketing / blogging purpose. Some contain just one bridge page to an affiliate site (plus legal disclaimer pages - templates are provided) Some of my sites are for test purpose only. They give me extremely versatile opportunities - if you're interested, join me from the link below! 

(Real Time) Affiliate Income Report Last Month
November 2019: $9,219.04
Income Report November 2019
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Ray Alexander

Hi! I’m Ray. Over the past 15+ years I have been involved with web designing, programming and online marketing. I work from home and have a passion for exploring new tools, services and programs in order to make money online. I’m here to help you succeed in building a profitable business by sharing my experiences. Any question, don’t hesitate to ask!

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below

Jean Jean

I would like to know if there are any successful affiliate marketers without a website. I would like to follow any paths that successful people take. I am willing to invest time, effort and all the investment I can think of to take all the possibilities. Thank you for your contribution. Jean Jean Devour

Reply
    Ray Alexander

    Hi Jean, thanks for your comment, read my post if you’d like to know. I wish you all the best!

    Reply
mmo

This is a great information. Well done to you for composing the list of affiliate marketing without a website. I receive messages from so many new people who want to know how to promote affiliate products without using a website. I’ve bookmarked this page now I will give it to them. Hopefully they will know how hard it is without it. Your explanation about email marketing particularly is spot on. Well done for that.

Reply
    Ray Alexander

    Hi, thanks for your comment, and I’m glad to know that you can make good use of this page! It will be great if people can take the message in a positive way; “building a website is not as difficult as you think” rather than “it’s hard to make money without building a website”.

    Reply
Tomasz

Great insights. When I first started affiliate marketing I too was looking for some ways that didn’t require websites. The reason was I thought it was too much fuss. But once I was used to it I realized it doesn’t take a few hours to build one. All you need is a simple website to start paying for ads. Without it you are not going very far.

Reply
    Ray Alexander

    Hi Tomasz, thanks for sharing your experience. Like you say, building a website is not a difficult exercise. With just a little bit of expense a lot more opportunities will come in.

    Reply
Citiboy7even

I love what he says in this article. He’s right about ebooks, I published one a few years ago that’s still selling occasionally but no reason why anyone should feel they don’t want to blog but they can write for other publications.

Reply
    Ray Alexander

    Hi, thanks for your comment. Glad you agree! I wish you all the best with continued success!

    Reply
Premia

Hi Ray! I just like to say Thank You for this post because this is a question I asked you about a year ago and you kindly told me the options and why they would not work. So I listened to you and I now know where I’m going. I have not had good success yet but at least my goals are focused with my websites.

You know a lot about email marketing and if anybody has questions they should ask you, Ray! Now I definitely understand how it works. I am working on my auto responder, I definitely know why you need a website for it. Thank you!

Reply
    Ray Alexander

    Hi Premia, thanks for your comment! It’s good to see you focus on your website and leads. With persistency you’ll get there. Any questions you’re more than welcome to message me to ask!

    Reply
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