Is Affiliate Marketing A Scam?


Affiliate Marketing is a long established industry that is used by some of the largest companies in the world.

In this article we are going to look at why some people regard it as a scam.

Is this reputation deserved or not?


Disclosure : Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.


The Bad Old Days Of Affiliate Marketing



In the early days, Affiliate Marketing developed an unfair reputation.

It became known as a “Get rich quick scam”

This was due, without doubt, to the way it was promoted as a business model.

Various characters and self proclaimed “Gurus” developed and pushed their affiliate marketing courses in a less than professional manner.

We have all seen versions of the old ways it was portrayed.

Some young entrepreneur roaming around on a beach or sitting by a pool.

The sun was shining and hired models in bikinis flitted in and out of the camera shot.

Then came the sales pitch.


“6 months ago I was broke”

“Then I discovered this secret system”

“Blah blah, now I spend my life traveling and working a few hours a day on my laptop”

“For X amount of dollars I can sell you this super secret license to print money online system”

“You can live the life of your dreams too, if you just use my techniques”

“You can buy this course for x amount of money”

“See you on the beach!”


Cut to Guru driving off in an exotic sports car or something similar.

I can tell you now, that their super secret technique did work.

It WAS almost a license to print money.

For them.

So many people bought into the hype and also bought the systems.


Now this is not to say their courses didn’t work.

They probably did for some people at one point or another.

But the internet evolves at a fast pace.

Techniques that work now may no longer be as effective, or perhaps even obsolete, within months.

Also, any business, including affiliate marketing, takes time and dedication in order to grow to successful levels.

Unless the person is super lucky or uses some dubious techniques, they are highly unlikely to go from broke to millionaire status within 6 months

I don’t care what super secret techniques they use.

This resulted in a lot of very disappointed people.

The thing with disappointed customers is they tend to tell anyone who will listen about how bad the thing is that disappointed them.

Unfortunately, part of the super secret license to print money technique was usually affiliate marketing.

Is it any wonder it developed a bad reputation among some people?

A very unfair one.

But……That was the bad old days.




A Revamped Industry.



Affiliate marketing is now a very professional industry.

Although there are still people who try to market their super technique courses, they are mostly a relic of the past.

I’m sure that you will encounter them along the way.

If you are researching affiliate marketing, then the chances are that you will at some point.

Now this is not to say all bundled courses are bad.

Some may be effective.

But as I said, the internet keeps evolving.

What is effective today, may not be effective next month.



Here are some well known companies that have affiliate programs.


Amazon Affiliate Program

Best Buy Affiliate Program

Ebay Affiliate Program

Sephora Affiliate Program

Tiffany Affiliate Program



Do you think companies such as these would be involved in affiliate marketing if it was a scam?

Of course not!

They are involved because it is an extremely useful part of their business model.

It is also very lucrative.

Online shopping is currently booming, and also shaping up to experience a gold rush.


A Bright Future



Online shopping has been growing year after year for quite a while now.

E-Commerce is set to reach 22% of global retail sales by 2023 (Source Big Commerce )

Obviously a lot of companies are going to want as big a slice of that pie as they can possibly get.

To do this many will set up or expand their affiliate programs.

Large companies are very aware of the data with regards to online commerce.

They also know that people are glued to their smartphones all day and that making purchases through phone apps etc is extremely easy and secure.

The competition for online traffic is going to be fierce and expensive.

Relying solely on their own marketing efforts may not be the best policy.

You can rest assured that they are fully aware of this and will look to the best solution.

Affiliate marketing.

Many companies will be making a huge push to recruit affiliates.

Affiliates only get paid when they refer traffic that result in sales.

The companies will welcome the extra website traffic for brand exposure and will gladly pay commission for any referred sales.

In fact the competition for affiliate recruitment may result in them offering higher commission rates.

The future is very bright for affiliate marketing.

People who decide to get into affiliate marketing are positioning themselves to make a lot of money.





So, no, affiliate marketing is not a scam.

At least not if you deal with reputable well known companies.

Perhaps some back water websites may have a scam or two in progress, but rest assured, this is not the case with large companies.

They are going be trying to recruit as many affiliates as they can possibly get.


Where To Learn Affiliate Marketing



My personal suggestion, and the place I use myself, is Wealthy Affiliate

Wealthy Affiliate is not a pre-bundled course.

It is a full online learning platform.

The information is updated daily and there are people online 24 hours a day.

The platform has step by step training modules and also live video classes.

It has a built in social media platform that allows students to interact with each other and to build networks.

It is without doubt the premier affiliate marketing training platform.

If you are considering starting affiliate marketing and getting in position for the upcoming online gold rush then you should certainly consider taking advantage of their free membership offer.



What Is Wealthy Affiliate



Further Reading




Why You Need To Learn Affiliate Marketing



What Is The Best Affiliate Marketing Course




Affiliate Marketing Articles


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