The major reasons people work for themselves or others is to make enough income to cater for their basic and secondary need. It becomes a challenge when the income made is not able to cater for these needs as the reason or objective for making money is defeated. The same could be said of not generating a full time income by doing affiliate marketing. It begs the question, what is affiliate marketing, and why are affiliates not able to generate a full time income?

Affiliate marketing is the process of earning a commission by promoting other people’s (or company’s) products. You find a product you like, promote it to others and earn a piece of the profit for each sale that you make.  In simple terms affiliate marketing means selling another person’s or company’s products and services. It’s like a referral service. You set up a website or blog and join affiliate programs that are relevant to your audience. You can connect to these programs through affiliate networks that provide you with a link that you include on your site. When someone clicks the link and purchases the product or service you’re marketing, you receive a percentage of the sale proceeds as a commission.

Affiliate marketing overlaps with other Internet marketing methods to some degree, because affiliates often use regular advertising methods. Those methods include organic search engine optimization (SEO), paid search engine marketing (PPC – Pay Per Click), e-mail marketing, content marketing, and (in some sense) display advertising. On the other hand, affiliates sometimes use less orthodox techniques, such as publishing reviews of products or services offered by a partner.

Now that affiliate marketing has been explained, it is possible for any serious individual to make money given time and patience once they have an influential platform because it is all about approaching your audience in the right way effectively and efficiently. The main issue is not making money but is that income large enough to cater for those needs and why is that so?

The following reasons are given below why being an affiliate will not generate a full time income:

Affiliate marketing benefits the company whose product/service you are selling.

The persons/companies who make the most money are those who manufacture the products or services or those directly selling them. As an affiliate you spend time and money generating traffic, promoting blogs, services or products as the case may be. In time you find that the amount of money spent in marketing these services online does not do justice to the income generated and this affects your ability to get a fulltime generated income as an affiliate.

It has been found that the people really making money are those actually selling their products and services.  A person who makes a product for say amazing SEO plugin for WordPress is making enough money to generate a stable income. The affiliates are not. For example, Thesis WordPress theme by DIY Themes is surely making money, their affiliates are “sooooooo” many (emphasis supplied), that the entire market is chopped up and distributed amongst the 1000s of affiliates and what each gets in turn, are a few $100 at best (if at all).

Time factor to generate traffic that would result in full time income

Affiliate marketing is not recommended for those who want to make quick bucks or income as the marketing process is time consuming. Once started, affiliate marketing might generate little or no income for the first few months and for individuals looking to generate a stable income daily or monthly by their standards would be highly disappointed for the first few months. There are some different online businesses that would generate a full time income in the first few weeks or months but trying out affiliate given the time factor might be a bad idea.

Affiliate Ad Hijacking

A method of depriving an affiliate of the income which should be rightfully his affiliate ad hijacking. Hijacking negatively impacts your ad programs in a lot of ways which affects your ability to generate an income as it makes you lose traffic. Once there is little or not much traffic coming to you, your income reduces drastically and could sometimes lead to losses. If you are hijacked as an affiliate marketer, there is a high chance that your commission drops by 30% or more and this could affect the ability for you to generate income that would cater for your primary and secondary needs.

You have no control over the businesses product or service or how it does business

As an affiliate, if you are not able to control the business products or services or how the business is conducted, your income is affected as you have no control over your earnings. This is an important factor because once things are not so favorable, your generated income might be affected and these may have adverse effects on being able to cater for your needs as an affiliate.


There is great competition in affiliate marketing and once affiliates are not able to meet up to the high standards, there is little or no income generated. Most online businesses are highly competitive and if you do not have the recipe to stay ahead of others competing with you, your generated income is directly affected and it is advised you find different means of supplementing your generated income to enable you measure up.

Companies do not pay

It is well known-fact that some companies do not pay and if you are unfortunate enough to work with them, then there is no full time generated income coming in at the end of the day, week or month. Another factor that impedes your ability to generate full time income as an affiliate is the difficulty in making resales as the customers belong to the merchants and you have little or no information once you want to re-sell to them.

In summary, generating income as an affiliate is well within reach but getting enough income to cater for your needs might pose a serious challenge. It is advised that different sources of income are combined with affiliate marketing in order to generate a full time income.

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