I am a HUGE fan of the “freemium” business model. Wealthy Affiliate follows that model by offering a free membership account. The free membership gives you limited access in the Wealthy Affiliate dashboard. Some of your access lasts forever, such as some of the training videos and community features, while other features only last for a limited time, such as the live chat feature. Here is what you get with the free Wealthy Affiliate Membership:


I am a HUGE fan of the “freemium” business model. Wealthy Affiliate follows that model by offering a free membership account. The free membership gives you limited access in the Wealthy Affiliate dashboard. Some of your access lasts forever, such as some of the training videos and community features, while other features only last for a limited time, such as the live chat feature. Here is what you get with the free Wealthy Affiliate Membership:
Well, actually you do. There are over 500,000,000 (yes, 500 MILLION) products that you can promote as an affiliate marketer online. This means you don’t have to carry any inventory for any of these products/services. You simply link to companies through your special affiliate links, and exchange and they give you a cut (%) of every sale that you make.
Although it differs from spyware, adware often uses the same methods and technologies. Merchants initially were uninformed about adware, what impact it had, and how it could damage their brands. Affiliate marketers became aware of the issue much more quickly, especially because they noticed that adware often overwrites tracking cookies, thus resulting in a decline of commissions. Affiliates not employing adware felt that it was stealing commission from them. Adware often has no valuable purpose and rarely provides any useful content to the user, who is typically unaware that such software is installed on his/her computer.
Websites and services based on Web 2.0 concepts—blogging and interactive online communities, for example—have impacted the affiliate marketing world as well. These platforms allow improved communication between merchants and affiliates. Web 2.0 platforms have also opened affiliate marketing channels to personal bloggers, writers, and independent website owners. Contextual ads allow publishers with lower levels of web traffic to place affiliate ads on websites.[citation needed]
I have been with WA 2 years this month and I wouldn’t look back, the knowledge and financial freedom I have gained is a credit to the platform set up by WA. Some people say how $49 is too much a month however when you consider what’s included like hosting, training, great community, tools and more I would argue that they set the price to low as there is alot of value.
Two-tier programs exist in the minority of affiliate programs; most are simply one-tier. Referral programs beyond two-tier resemble multi-level marketing (MLM) or network marketing but are different: Multi-level marketing (MLM) or network marketing associations tend to have more complex commission requirements/qualifications than standard affiliate programs.[citation needed]
In 2006, the most active sectors for affiliate marketing were the adult gambling, retail industries and file-sharing services.[21]:149–150 The three sectors expected to experience the greatest growth are the mobile phone, finance, and travel sectors.[21] Soon after these sectors came the entertainment (particularly gaming) and Internet-related services (particularly broadband) sectors. Also several of the affiliate solution providers expect to see increased interest from business-to-business marketers and advertisers in using affiliate marketing as part of their mix.[21]:149–150
As a current member of WA I can attest to everything that TeamAMR has outlined here.  I was skeptical at first, even when I first signed up, I did not engage but instead I was taking my time poking, sniffing around.  Once I started reading the blogs, the comments I decided to take the plunge and begin the training.  Now I’m a WA junkie, every time I see a member post a success story, I become more committed to my goal and work even harder.  If you are skeptical, it surely is understandable but sign up and snoop around like I first did and don’t be afraid and you will soon see that WA is legitimate and genuine.

But here’s the kicker… If you sign up using my affiliate link for Wealthy Affiliate, I will be notified and I will send you a welcome message. From that point on, you can contact me absolutely any time and I will help coach you through the process. If you ever feel overwhelmed or have questions you can’t find the answers to, I’m just a quick message away. I’m not only happy to return the favor for you clicking on my affiliate link, but this business is my passion, and I absolutely love watching people’s businesses grow. So, if you are looking for one more reason to join Wealthy Affiliate, use any of my Wealthy Affiliate links before you sign up and you’ll get free coaching from me personally.
When beginning your affiliate marketing career, you’ll want to cultivate an audience that has very specific interests. This allows you to tailor your affiliate campaigns to that niche, increasing the likelihood that you’ll convert. By establishing yourself as an expert in one area instead of promoting a large array of products, you’ll be able to market to the people most likely to buy the product.
Previously known as Affiliate Window but now officially referred to as “AWIN” after acquiring Zanox a few years ago, this network claims to work with over 13,000 active advertisers and 100,000 publishers (affiliates). Founded in Germany, AWIN’s merchants primarily hail from Europe (especially Great Britain) although the U.S. network is growing rapidly. AWIN is currently active in 11 countries.

Basically, anyone who is looking to make money fast should stay away from Wealthy Affiliate. There are plenty of “make money fast” e-books and courses out there, and they are all a scam (trust me). While Wealthy Affiliate is legit, they will absolutely never claim that they teach you how to make money fast. Building a legitimate online business takes time.

As search engines have become more prominent, some affiliate marketers have shifted from sending e-mail spam to creating automatically generated web pages that often contain product data feeds provided by merchants. The goal of such web pages is to manipulate the relevancy or prominence of resources indexed by a search engine, also known as spamdexing. Each page can be targeted to a different niche market through the use of specific keywords, with the result being a skewed form of search engine optimization. 

When I say that I love Wealthy Affiliate, I’m not just saying that because I’m an affiliate for them. I’m a very active premium member at Wealthy Affiliate and love interacting with people on a daily basis. If you join, you’ll see me posting on people’s profiles, answering questions, chatting in the live chat area, and I have private personal messaging conversations multiple times per day.
The phrase, "Affiliates are an extended sales force for your business", which is often used to explain affiliate marketing, is not completely accurate. The primary difference between the two is that affiliate marketers provide little if any influence on a possible prospect in the conversion process once that prospect is directed to the advertiser's website. The sales team of the advertiser, however, does have the control and influence up to the point where the prospect either a) signs the contract, or b) completes the purchase.
Some merchants run their own (in-house) affiliate programs using dedicated software, while others use third-party intermediaries to track traffic or sales that are referred from affiliates. There are two different types of affiliate management methods used by merchants: standalone software or hosted services, typically called affiliate networks. Payouts to affiliates or publishers can be made by the networks on behalf of the merchant, by the network, consolidated across all merchants where the publisher has a relationship with and earned commissions or directly by the merchant itself.
Building trust with your audience is paramount in affiliate marketing, and the quickest way to lose trust is to recommend products either you haven’t used before or that aren’t a good fit for your audience. Also make sure you never tell anyone to directly buy a product, you are simply recommending the product. The more helpful you are and the more you make quality recommendations, the more likely your web visitors will come back for your expertise. 
This book is written by a hugely successful Amazon affiliate member, Armaan Kohli, and includes real case studies of how he’s built a successful niche site empire that’s monetized through the Amazon Associates Program. He shows you screenshots of how his income keeps growing along with an example of how he ultimately sold his 6 month old Amazon affiliate website for over $15000!
I realize my bias is already showing through, so I’ll get to what I DON’T like about Wealthy Affiliate below. But, as I’ve already stated, overall I don’t know of any other place that is better for new affiliate marketers to get started than Wealthy Affiliate. If you take a look around my site, you’ll notice I’ve spent a TON of time on it. I’ve spent years of my life building this site, and there are currently almost 500 posts here, all for free, for everyone. It is in my best interest to promote only the best training course and that training course is Wealthy Affiliate.

I agree with all the points you have mentioned. Talking about zero upsells, for instance, the best thing online, is setting aside a budget, and being able to respect that budget without exploding it. This is the amazing part about Wealthy Affiliate. You can plan 2,3,or even 4 years in advance and that budget will still be very relevant and applicable.
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