13 Reasons Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work For You

Maybe you worked for months at building your affiliate marketing website but still not able to figure out why affiliate marketing does not work for you?

You tried hard promoting an offer but didn't see the conversions that you expected.

Alexander Pope once said, "To err is human."

That statement is still true nearly 300 years after he made it.

Everyone makes mistakes in their lives; it is a natural part of this world.

We all do our best to be perfect but perfection is impossible because of all the pressures and stresses people go through on a regular basis.

The truth is that the affiliate marketing world is a cutthroat industry with plenty of competition.

It is fine if you make a mistake every once in a while but after a period of time, you are going to have to do a whole lot more for your efforts if you really want them to pay off.

You must watch for some of the common affiliate marketing mistakes that marketers often make and try to avoid as many of them as you could.

These include mistakes where people mess up their websites and struggle to make them go anywhere.

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work For You?

Here is your answer:

Though there could be many factors that can delay your success at affiliate marketing. The most common being you might not be knowing what you are doing or you entered the niche that is too active. You are always thinking too much about money rather than focusing on providing value to your customers.

In this post, I will help you to understand why affiliate marketing does not work by throwing light on some of the things that you can consider doing to avoid some of these mistakes.

It is not all that hard to keep yourself in check if you just know how to make your website work right and be as useful as it can be.

Here are the top thirteen reasons why affiliate marketing does not work for most beginners and aspiring marketers.

Reason 1: Not Knowing What You Are Promoting

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - Not Knowing What You Are Promoting

From my perspective, this is going to be the number one reason why affiliate marketing does not work for most of the beginners.

The first mistake that people make when entering a marketing scheme is not knowing much about what is being promoted.

A marketer has to fully understand the product or service being offered and be able to answer any questions customers have.

People who do not know anything about what they are promoting should really take a pause and put a thought over it.

  • They do not know how to make good content.
  • They might not be ready to answer questions visitors might ask.
  • This problem surfaces when people get into a market with the belief that they will make lots of money.
  • They just notice that something is popular and then latch onto it without thinking twice.

After a while, it gets to the point where the marketer discovers that he or she really does not know much about what is being promoted on a site.

We can look at the example of the bitcoin.

The bitcoin is a digital type of currency that has become immensely popular recently.

People are looking to acquire it and trade it or invest in it with the hopes of making a huge profit from it in the future.

A person might choose to enter into a marketing ploy for a site that offers bitcoin trading or sales.

The person could do this with the knowledge that the bitcoin is really popular and that it could lead to a viable marketing campaign.

Soon the marketer will come across a serious problem: he or she does not really know all that much about the bitcoin.

The affiliate does not understand the technical aspects of the bitcoin or how it works, how it can be traded, what causes its value to change, or even the pros and cons of digital currency.

This makes it harder for the marketer to keep a site running.

This is a real problem that often keeps people from sticking with certain marketing plans.

It is not all that easy to come up with a smart marketing plan when you do not know much about the product or service.

How To Be Aware of Your Promotion?
  • Avoid staffing a campaign about a product that you do not fully understand.
  • Choose the niches that you know about.
  • It is easier to produce quality content if you understand everything you want to post about.

Reason 2: Choosing a Niche That Needs So Much Research

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - Choosing a Niche That Needs So Much Research

The reason number two why affiliate marketing does not work for many people could be the niche that chose requires so much research.

It is often best to work on a market that you can clearly understand and where you don't have to put in a lot of research.

You will be more likely to succeed if you choose a field of work in which you have a strong interest and really want to work.

You might consider getting into a field that requires an extra bit of research but too much research can be complicated and make your work frustrating.

Keep your research simple.

Let's go back to the bitcoin example.

As appealing as this field may be, it is also an extremely complicated one.

You might have to do a lot of research to discover how the bitcoin works, the rules surrounding its use, and how it is distributed.

The rules surrounding it and its overly technical nature make the bitcoin a tough topic to discuss.

Over time, you might struggle with being able to explain to readers what makes the bitcoin attractive.

You might get lost in the difficult bits of information and even struggle to figure out how an investment can work.

This makes it harder for you to keep up with your affiliate marketing efforts relating to the bitcoin.

How To Find The Perfect Niche?
  • It is best to choose fields that you clearly understand and do not have to research diligently.
  • When choosing a program, consider what you know and ask yourself how much research will be required to be fully informed.
  • Try free tools like Google Keyword Planner or UberSuggest to find a profitable niche that can work right for you.

Related: How To Get Started With Affiliate Marketing For Beginners – Step by Step

Reason 3: Entering a Niche That is Too Active

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - Entering a Niche That is Too Active

A related problem that marketers often encounter is choosing fields that are extremely active and tough to keep up with.

Sometimes it becomes too late before they realize why affiliate marketing does not work for them.

Once again, we need to get back to the bitcoin example.

There are stories about the bitcoin coming out every day.

It can be very hard to keep up with all the details surrounding technical changes to the bitcoin, laws involving its use, and how its value on the market keeps changing.

You could easily get lost when trying to catch up with all the news and reports that involve the bitcoin.

Therefore, you might struggle to create a website that actually says something valuable.

You are better off with a subject that is easier to follow.

Take the field of lawn care, for instance.

There are plenty of developments in today's lawn care industry but they are not going to come about as frequently as you might think.

Unlike the bitcoin industry, you will not be bombarded with one story after another about it.

You can keep track of the lawn care industry easily.

The Solution:
  • Sticking with a field that you can keep tabs on without getting lost will help you produce quality web content.
  • You will not become overwhelmed by the changing environment, changing laws, and bombardment with questions from customers.
  • Try tools like Jaaxy that can help you find a profitable niche for your business.

Enter a keyword below and get started.

Reason 4: Thinking Straight About Money

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work -Thinking Straight About Money
Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

Many people who enter into affiliate marketing do so with the belief that they will receive lots of money really fast.

It is true that you could get a good deal of money but maybe not right away.

You have to do a lot of work just to get your website or blog up and running.

It might take weeks or months for you to make your blog pay.

Thinking that you are going to get rich fast is one of the worst mistakes that you could make.

If you think this way, then you will likely make even more mistakes because you will be rushing your way through your campaign.

How Not To Think Too Much About Money?
  • Be patient with your work and make sure your impatience is kept in check.
  • You will surely read stories about people who claim they can make thousands of dollars a month from affiliate marketing.
  • It is true that you can eventually make lots of money but do not expect to get it all right away.
  • It will take a lot of time before your website or blog begins to be profitable for you.

Related: How To Be a Successful Affiliate Marketer

Reason 5: Not Creating Enough Content

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - Not Creating Enough Content
Image by sarayut chamnong from Pixabay

Your affiliate site needs to have a great deal of content.

This content could include everything from blog posts to videos to podcasts.

Plan to make a variety of materials to post on your site.

Be creative.

The problem that some people have is that they do not plan enough material.

They think that what they are doing now is good enough.

They believe that all one needs to do is get online.

You have to produce a strong online footprint.

This includes not only producing unique and sensible content but also providing new material regularly.

People are more likely to choose your site when they see that you have lots of content and that you are adding more of it on a regular basis.

People will bookmark your page as they notice you have many stories to share.

How To Create Enough Content?
  • As you plan your blog, make sure you have enough content to work with for a while.
  • Do not start your site unless you have enough ideas for material and a plan for getting all that content on your site for people to use.

Related: 10 Common Affiliate Marketing Mistakes To Avoid

Reason 6: Not Following a Schedule

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - Not Following a Schedule
Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels

One issue that many poor campaigns have is not having a good schedule for posting material.

It always helps to have a good schedule for posting items so that you have more control over how well your site appears.

People prefer to go to sites when they know that they can expect updates regularly at some point in the week or month.

They will not be interested in sites where it is too difficult to predict when something interesting will be added.

Not having a schedule for posting items will pose problems.

You will struggle to keep tabs on your schedule and to ensure that you continually post new content.

Not sticking to a schedule will discourage visitors to your site.

How To Follow a Schedule?
  • Create a schedule for posting things onto your online business site.
  • This is vital whether you plan on posting things every day, every other day, or on specific days of the week.

Related: How Fast Can You Make Money With Affiliate Marketing?

Reason 7: Struggling To Produce Content

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - You Struggle to Produce Content
Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

Let's talk about what happens when you actually do have content that you wish to produce.

Creating content can be a challenge.

You might have great ideas for what you want to introduce and promote but that does not mean everything you come across is going to work.

The problem with trying to create content is that you might not have enough ideas.

It is one thing to post something and to keep a site active.

It is another to create something that is distinctive and inviting.

One of the greatest difficulties that affiliate marketers face is struggling to produce valuable content.

You may find yourself facing the following issues:

  • A site might have content that reads like anything else online. It does not have any original language or ideas.
  • The content could have been rehashed many times over. An idea introduced a week earlier could be discussed again a few days after that. This could suggest that a site is not all that creative.
  • The material produced may be irrelevant and have nothing to do with whatever the site is trying to promote.
  • Some bits of data might be outdated as they are posted. A website operator might not be doing research to plan a site that is unique and offers distinctive information.
  • The content might have a limited shelf life. It could be about a very specific time or event but it might be relevant only for a few weeks or months.

All these issues are examples of how sites might create content that does not provide the reader with any value.

A reader is not going to want to stay with a site whose content is unoriginal or unappealing.

Even worse, that reader is not going to recommend other people to that site.

How To Produce More Content?
  • Be critical of your writing before you post it.
  • Make sure anything you produce is unique and special without being too complex.

Reason 8: Ignoring the Competition

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - Ignoring the Competition
Photo by Gratisography from Pexels

The reason number eight why affiliate marketing does not work for so many newbies is that they don't keep a watch on what their competitors are up to.

It does not matter what marketing ploy you use or how you introduce content.

You are surely going to be in competition with other affiliates within the same marketing niche.

People who fail often underestimate their competition.

They think that other sites that serve the same niche are not going to be too much of a concern.

Even worse, some people do not even think about the competition at all.

Make sure you look at how the competition in your niche is organized.

How To Analyze The Competition?
  • See how well the competition works and ensure that you can come up with a plan that's better.
  • Think about how competitors post content, how often they offer it, and whether they are trying to be distinctive in some way.
  • You can create a special plan on your site that is inspired by what you find elsewhere.
  • Check out the competition regularly as there could be new contenders in the mix to compete with you.

Reason 9: Not Being Different

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - Not Being Different
Image by rawpixel from Pixabay

The best affiliate websites are the ones that try to do things differently.

A good site always takes a closer look at how it can stand out and offer information that no one else has.

Being too much like your competitors is never a good idea.

You might be trying too hard to be like someone else.

It is fine to look at your competition so you are inspired to come up with something special and valuable.

Do not try to duplicate their content or appear similar.

Remember, anything that is too similar to what someone else has can be seen as unoriginal.

A search engine might even penalize you if your work is deemed to be too similar to someone else's.

How To Be Different From Your Competitors?
  • Develop your own angle and your own ideas for your site.
  • Think about how you will reach your audience and explain what you have in a carefully organized manner.
  • Try to give your writing a distinctive voice.

Related: 7 Blunders To Avoid While Finding The Affiliate Networks

Reason 10: Too Many Ads On the Website

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - Too Many Ads On the Website
Image by huffpost.com

It is true that you need great ads on your site to let people know what you are promoting.

Even more importantly, these ads help people to see where they can go to buy the products.

However, do not place lots of ads on your site.

The problem with having too many ads is that they might be distracting.

They can keep people from focusing on your content.

Having too many ads often makes a site look unprofessional.

People are not necessarily willing to go around sites if they see too many ads.

They just want to get on your site to see what the content is like.

They will click on those ads if they like the content and feel that you are a viable entity to do business with.

More importantly, having too many ads is often a sign of desperation.

It suggests that you are so desperate to make money that you fill your site with ads.

People are not going to like this aspect of your site.

You may also struggle to get your site loaded up onto a search engine if you have too many ads.

Many search engines might keep your site from being visible if they see too many advertisements or promotional items on it.

Search engines prefer sites that sound and feel authentic and are not overly pushy toward the general public.

How To Put Ads Wisely?
  • Rather than working too hard to convince the visitors to see and click on your ads focus on the solution they are looking for.
  • Show the ads only if it's necessary especially if your site is pretty new.
  • Most people love to give it back if they are happy navigating your site and find what they were looking for.

Learn Affiliate Marketing Step by Step

Reason 11: Being Too Needy

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - Being Too Needy
Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

You should allow people to click on your site's ads or links on their own.

The content should do the talking as it lets people see what you have to offer.

You might have seen messages in the past where someone is trying to tell you to click on an ad.

For instance, you might know of a podcast that you really like to listen to online.

You might go on that podcast's site regularly to see what new episodes are posted and what developments are happening on that site.

There could be times where the podcast says that you should click on its link to some website for shopping.

The site might tell you that it will get a percentage of sales.

This would be all for helping to keep the lights on for a show.

You might not have a problem with this if you are a fan of the podcast in question.

But what about those who are not overly familiar with it?

Those people might feel as though the website is desperate for money and cares less about the actual content.

This is a situation that you need to avoid.

The only people who would be okay with you asking them to click on something are the ones that regularly go on your website and have become committed customers.

Telling the audience to click on a link for no apparent reason is not always the best strategy to follow.

You have to be careful when trying to get your site to be visible and useful to more people.

How Not To Be Too Needy?
  • Let your content speak for you.
  • Do not directly petition your readers to click on something or else they will do the opposite.
  • No one wants to be forced into doing something.
  • You can still ask people to click on a link but it works best when you talk about the urgency of an offer or how someone might need it.

Reason 12: Shifting the Tone Too Often

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - Shifting the Tone Too Often
Photo by Magda Ehlers from Pexels

The key reason to maintain a consistent tone or style is that it lets people know what you want to say and gives the audience an idea of what to expect.

You do not want to shift your tone too many times.

Doing so might make your site confusing or hard to figure out.

A site with too many shifts in tone is not much fun to read.

Would you want to follow a fun and jovial post with one that becomes a real downer and makes people worried about something?

Why Talk In the Same Tone?

Be certain that you keep the tone on your site consistent so that you do not confuse the reader or let your words become misleading.

Reason 13: Not Having a Strategy

Why Affiliate Marketing Does Not Work - Not Having a Strategy
Photo by Kaboompics.com from Pexels

Do you have a strategy about how do you want to make money from your blog or website?


This could be one of the reasons why affiliate marketing does not work for you.

A common error is that people stray from the strategies they have planned to use.

People often forget about what makes their work valuable.

They try new things with the hopes that they will be more successful.

Stay with the strategy that you plan on using.

Do not stray from it or it will be hard for you to get back on track.

Even worse, the positive momentum your site is building might be ruined if you change strategies to make your site stand out.

Your strategy needs to include a carefully laid out plan for how you are going to run your site.

It needs to be arranged so that you can follow that plan without being lost or struggling to try to make your blog run.

How To Prepare a Strategy?

You could create either a short-term or long-term strategy for how your site will be laid out and produced.

As you do this, you must look carefully at how you are managing the site and whether you have a clear plan for how it will work.


These are the most common mistakes that most of the aspiring affiliate marketers make.

Be certain that you look at all the issues listed in this post before you start your own affiliate marketing effort.

Being careful and keeping to one strategy will keep you on track and produce momentum for your website or blog.

Do you have any question or would you like to share with me where are you stuck in your affiliate marketing journey right now?

Feel free to drop a comment below and I'd be glad if I could help you with anything πŸ™‚

About the author 

Hardik Raval

Hardik is passionate about helping people launch their own online business. He loves to talk about online business ideas, affiliate marketing tools, tips and other sources of residual income available on the internet.

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