Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs

Piggy Bank and Calculator PictureSo you want to get into affiliate marketing but you’re wondering what are the affiliate marketing startup costs going to be? Well that is what we are going to go over in this post. Affiliate marketing can be a very profitable and passive way of generating massive income. But before you jump in, you should know how much it costs to get started. In this post I’m going to go through many of the various resources and tools you will want to invest in if you want to start succeeding in the world of affiliate marketing. So without further ado, here is my curated list list of items you’re going to want to purchase. Also, throughout the post I sprinkle in some really helpful tips.

Here are the affiliate marketing startup costs we are going to go over:

Web Hosting and a Domain Name
Email Marketing Software
WordPress
Website Theme
Landing Page Software
Logo
Social Media Accounts
Social Media Management Software
Linking Tracking Software
Stock Photos
Photo Editing
Keyword Research Tool
Webcam, Microphone, and Screen Recording Software

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Web Hosting and a Domain Name

The number one item you’re going to want to purchase is web hosting and a domain name. I put these two items together because it really doesn’t make sense to have one without the other.

Your web hosting is where you’ll run your website in order to promote your affiliate links. One of the most popular forms of marketing it through a blog. So, more-than-likely, you’ll be setting up a WordPress blog on your web hosting.

There’s a lot of different web hosting companies out there. The one that I like the most is Hostgator.

Side note – I will admit that the links I’m going to show you, for the most part, are affiliate links. So I do get a little commission but at no additional cost to you and I actually use most all of these tools myself.

So anyways, Hostgator is a very popular company. I see them all over the place and for good reason. They have 24/7 support. They try to optimize their web hosting for WordPress, specifically. This means that your WordPress site (which is what I suggest you utilize) will run very fast on Hostgator. Everything I mentioned for Hostgator is the same for Bluehost

You’re also going to want to purchase a domain name. I always purchase mine through Godaddy. Now I’m going to give you a little secret on how you can possibly purchase your domain from Godaddy for under $2. It’s not guaranteed but it worked for me.

So I’ll share my secret with you.

How I Saved $10 on Godaddy Plus Earned Cashback

I’m going to take a quick minute to show you how I saved about $10 plus got some cashback when I purchased a domain. Hopefully I can save you some money on some of these affiliate marketing startup costs. So first thing you’re going to want to do is sign up for Shop.com. Shop.com is an awesome marketplace to shop for everyday items on the Internet.

Once you sign up, you’ll want to go ahead and download this plugin called Shopbuddy. Now here’s what ShopBuddy is going to do and this is the whole reason, in my opinion, for having this tool. It’s going to alert you whenever there are coupons available for the site you’re on. Picture this scenario. You’re shopping online. You get to the checkout page. There’s that coupon code box we all see. When you see it you’re like “damn. I wish I had a coupon code.” And you might be thinking, “I know there’s a coupon code out there somewhere. I wish I had it. I know I could save a few bucks if I just had a coupon code.” Well, if there is a coupon code available, now you will have it. It’s going to pop up in ShopBuddy so that you know what it is. So you never miss out on a coupon code.

Now GoDaddy is a partner store of Shop.com. So when I go to GoDaddy.com ShopBuddy is going to pop up and let me know if there is a coupon code available. The day I purchased my domain there was a coupon code available for 99 cent domain.

Flying Cash PictureGreat deal!

That’s how I did. On top of that Shop.com may pay you some cashback for the purchasing through them as well. I also have a Shop.com business so I get business volume on top of that. But that’s a different story for another time.

LightbulbHelpful Tip

Domain Names PicturePicking a Domain Name

So how do you pick a domain name? Your domain name is going to be something you think of that relates to the site you want to run. Basically you’re going to pick a niche. The best advice I can give you for that is to pick something you’re very knowledgeable and passionate about. When you blog about things you’re more knowledgeable about you’re able to offer your readers more value since they are learning from your expertise. So pick a niche that you know a lot about. If you’re an expert in that field, all the better. That’s what you want to pick. You know you’re going to be able to offer your audience information that is:

  • Not out there or
  • You’re going to, hopefully, be able to show it in an easy-to-understand way that just about anyone can understand.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
Hostgator Web Hosting – $130.81 – $3.63/month – 36 Month plan. “Baby” package. Gives you the ability to install unlimited domains. Hostgator was running an awesome promo when I checked on pricing during the writing of this post.
Godaddy Domain Name – Less than $2.00. I can’t remember the exact price I paid, but it was less than $2 with my coupon code.

Email Marketing





Email marketing made easy.

The sooner you set up an email marketing campaign, the sooner you can start making connections with customers and growing your business. Discover how AWeber can help when you sign up for our behind-the-scenes email course.

Flying Emails PictureSo one of your biggest goals in affiliate marketing is to build an email list. Why? Well if you have a list of 1000 people then you can easily push out a message to 1000 people. Better yet, it’s going to be a targeted list of 1000 people who you know already have an interest in what you blog about. For example, let’s say you have a blog where you blog about supplements for your health (antioxidants, fat loss, weight lifting, and so on). Let’s say you have 1000 people who have subscribed to your list to receive your newsletter. In your emails you send out, you may have products in that email that you plug (such as affiliate links). Your likelihood of selling to those 1000 people vs some random group of 1000 people is much greater. They think of you as a trusted source. Think about it. If they took the time to subscribe to your list, they did it because they like what you have to offer. So it can really increase your affiliate commissions.

The Email marketing program that I use is Aweber. Aweber offers great customer support. You can call them on the phone and speak to a real person who will really help you. They’ve been around for a long time. They’re based in the United States. It’s really the product of choice for email marketing if you want to do and do it right. It’s what professionals use and it comes in at a very low price of $19.00/month as of the writing of this article.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
Aweber – $19.00

WordPress

WordpressSo let’s say you have your web hosting, your domain name, and your email marketing software. Next thing you really need to do is build a website. Let’s say you’re a total newbie to web design and web development. It’s intimidating to you to think about creating your own website. I’m here to let you know that it’s not that bad. Here’s what I’m going to suggest to you. This is the way I do things currently. I suggest you run your site on WordPress. WordPress is totally free. When you sign up for Hostgator, WordPress comes with it. It’s extremely easy to install. Now when you install WordPress it comes with a default theme, which in my opinion, is way to bland. So you’re going to want to install what’s called a theme on your site and we’ll go over that next.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
WordPress – Free

Learn WordPress

Now if you’re a newbie to WordPress and you want to learn how to use it then I suggest taking a course. Udemy is such a great site for learning all kinds of things. There’s a course on Udemy called WordPress For Business: Build An Amazing Site From Scratch that I suggest taking.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
WordPress Course – $200

Website Theme

ThemeforestFirst of all, what is a theme? A theme is basically the look and feel of your website. Lots of themes come with various plugins that help display your content in visually appealing ways as well. Now there’s lots of options for themes. You can spend all day looking at WordPress themes. When you do research you’ll find out there’s lots of free themes out there. I would only suggest these free themes to you if you’re looking to just experiment with WordPress.

There’s a theme that I purchased and I absolutely love it. It is called Avada. This website actually is running on Avada. You can purchase Avada at ThemeForest.net. So go there and sign up. and then search for Avada. It comes with all kinds of bells and whistles. I’ll let you do the reading on it. It’s the number one rated theme on Themeforest. It only cost me $78. So it’s really not a lot considering how nice and versatile this theme is. It was a good investment and I definitely suggest putting it into  your affiliate marketing startup costs. I researched a lot of different themes before I decided on this one.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
Website theme (Avada) – $78.00

Landing Page Software

InstabuilderNow Avada is awesome. But another piece of software you may want to invest in is software that’s going to allow you to create landing pages and opt-in form pages. The tool I suggest for that is Instabuilder. The reason I suggest purchasing Instabuilder in addition to Avada is strictly for landing pages that you may want to create for promotions and offers. The reason for that is because Instabuilder is basically made for Internet Marketers . It’s made for people who do things like affiliate marketing. I really do suggest going to their page and checking out all the features.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
Instabuilder – $97.00

Logo

Logo design contest at 48hourslogo.comThe next thing that you are going to want is a logo. You want to stand out from the crowd and a logo puts trust in you as it gives you a much more professional feel. Think of it as your own brand. There’s a couple different options I suggest. The first one is 48HoursLogo They’re really good for logo design. The other one I suggest is Fiverr. Both sites are great for logo design. They’re also great for all types of various digital marketing that you may need. But logo design, in particular, is a service that is heavily used on both of these sites and for good reason.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
Logo – Varies. $128 will get you a very nice log over at 48HoursLogo.

Social Media Accounts

The other thing you’re going to want is social media accounts for your websites. Now this is totally free and it’s going to really help with getting your name out there.

LightbulbHelpful Tip

The social media accounts you create should really be dependent on the type of site that you’re running. Who is your demographic? Certain social media platforms appeal to certain demographics more than others. So try to match the social media platform you’re going to use in terms of demographic. Usually Facebook and Twitter are good to use regardless of who your demographic is. The reason for that is because they are both the top dogs in the social media industry. This means they do a good job of targeting all demographics.

Here’s another great social media tip and it’s the last thing I’ll say on social media accounts.

Social Media Insanity PictureYou may think to open up social media accounts on 10 different social media platforms. I would advise against that. The reason being is because you have to make sure to keep each account up-to-date. So if you open up 10 different accounts then you should keep all 10 of those accounts up-to-date. I’m sure you can imagine that would be a very time-consuming on-going task. So my suggestion is to only stick with one or two or three at the most at first. Because on top of that you’re going to have email marketing as well. Nobody ever said this is going to be easy. Affiliate marketing is not easy. It takes time. But it’s also something that once you build it and you build it big, it can be very profitable. more importantly, it’s passive. Meaning passive income.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
Social Media Accounts (Facebook and Twitter) – Free

Social Media Management

So signing up for social media platforms is absolutely free which is awesome. That said, one thing you may want to invest in is a tool to help you manage your social media accounts. Basically, put them under one umbrella as far as management goes. The tool that I have experience with is HootSuite. I think the biggest advantage that you’re going to get from HootSuite is that you can plan out your posts ahead of time. You can plan what they’re going to be and when they’re going to be released. This can really save you a lot of time. That said, the tool offers so much more. Check out their site to see all the features.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
HootSuite– Free to get started




Link Tracking


The other thing you’re going to want to invest in (and this is a bit of a more advanced tool) is link tracking software. There’s a few different ones out there. The one that I have experience with is ClickMagick. Basically, in a nutshell, what this software is going to do for you is it’s going to help you to determine where your traffic is coming from. It’s going to help you understand what keywords are leading people to your pages (if you’re doing Bing and/or Google Adwords). From there, and this is even more important, it’s going to help you understand what is converting. This is invaluable information. It’s so important because once you know exactly what’s working you know where to scale up. And I know that probably made no sense to a lot of people. Again, I don’t want to get into detail. That’s more of an advanced topic. When you sign up with ClickMagick, they offer a lot of training. Also, if you purchase through me then feel free to reach out to me and I’ll try to help you as well. ClickMagick is the way to go when you do decide to invest.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
ClickMagick – $244/Year or $17.00/month

Stock Photos

Stock UnlimitedWhen you start blogging on a regular basis you’re going to find yourself looking for various photos you can use within your blog posts. That said, you need to be careful. You can’t just Google search for an image and use any old image you find on the Internet. Doing so can possibly infringe on copyrights. So how do you make sure the photos you are obtaining are good quality photos that you can use on your site? Well this is where StockUnlimited comes into play. They have an excellent selection of photos, vectors, and even stock audio you can use for various projects.

Now even with StockUnlimited, do take a minute to learn what you can and cannot use their stock for by checking out the license page. That said, StockUnlimited, for the price, in my opinion cannot be beat. Trust me, as you start blogging more and more you’ll find yourself using this site all the time.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
Stock Unlimited – $69/year

Photo Editing

Canva.com Badge PictureNow when you purchase stock photos you’ll find that you want to edit the photo. For example, you may find a great photo to use from StockUnlimited as the featured image of your next blog post. The problem is, you’d love to put some text on that photo. Personally, I like to put the title of my blog post on the photo. Well, here is a free and easy way to do that. Sign up at Canva.com. You’ll then be able to upload your photo to Canva, insert some text on it, and then export the newly created image for use on your blog. If you are serious about photo editing and creating graphics, then you’ll want to look into the Adobe Creative Suite.

Keyword Research Tool

So you want to generate traffic to your site but you don’t want to pay tons of money. Well this is where keyword research comes into play. How do you figure out what keywords your customers are searching for on sites like Google and Bing? I have four tools to help you with this. Let’s start with the free ones.

Google Keyword Planner – This tool will help you examine search volume.
Google Trends – Let’s you see what is trending on Google. This allows you to see who the top dogs are in the niche you market so you can see what keywords they rank for.
Bing Keyword Research – If you’re looking to do promotions using Bing Adwords then Bing has some great tools built-in that will really help you out.

Now for the paid tool
SEMrushSEMRush – This is a program you do have to pay for, but it’s also used by lots of successful Internet Marketers as their go-to program for bringing massive organic traffic to their sites. There’s lots of training available as this is a bit more advanced tool but definitely one you are going to want as an affiliate marketer. So why would you pay for this tool when the other ones are free? What is this tool providing you that the others are not? Broadly put, competitive analysis. A tools like SEMRush gives you the ability to spy on your competition and see what’s working for them.

You can find out reasons why a certain page you want to compete against is ranking so high. Maybe it has lots of backlinks with high domain authority, lots of social shares, and there are a number of other contributing factors.  Please do check out the link. This tool is the priciest of all the tools I have listed. But if you really want to take affiliate marketing seriously, it’s invaluable.

Remember, content comes first (have great content on your website). But traffic comes second and that’s where SEMRush comes into play.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
Google Keyword Planner – Free
Google Trends – Free
Bing Keyword Research – Free
SEMRush – $699 (1 year)

Webcam, Microphone, Screen Recording Software

If you’re looking to monetize on creating Youtube videos by doing webcast-style videos then you’ll probably want two items at a bare minimum for making decent looking and sounding videos.

  • A webcam
  • A microphone
  • Screen recording software

Now if you have a laptop the built-in webcam and microphone may be fine. That said, not all laptops are created equal. Most laptops, quite frankly, have horrible built-in webcams and microphones. So if you want to kick things up a notch, invest in some quality hardware. As far as webcams go, the best webcam you can invest in is the Logitech C920. This is probably the best webcam on the market. It’s an Amazon number 1 seller.

When it comes to microphones, the microphone I suggest purchasing is the Blue Yeti microphone. Again, I noticed a huge difference in sound when I used the Yeti microphone compared to my built-in microphone. The investment is worth it as viewers are much more easily bound to click away from a video containing crappy (my technical term) video and audio.

In regards to screen recording software, if you want to go the free route, software such as Open Broadcaster is one that I particularly like. I even used it for my Udemy course I created.

Aside from that, I have an iPhone. The iPhone 7 takes amazing video.

Affiliate Marketing Startup Costs
Blue Yeti USB Microphone – Silver – $129.00
Logitech HD Webcam C310 – $31.00
Open Broadcaster – Free

Paid Advertising

It can take a long time to gain organic traffic to your site. In the mean time, one way to get traffic to your site immediately is with some paid advertising. Two of the most popular forms are Google Adwords and Bing Ads. With both of these services you are paying a price each time someone clicks on your link that brings people to either your landing page that then has the affiliate link within it or directly to the affiliate site. You’ll want to be careful. Bing allows the latter method while Google doesn’t. Another great advertising platform is Facebook.

Costs are  going to vary depending on they keywords you want to pay for. I’ve paid as little as $0.10/click up to $1.50/click. That said, bigger businesses are willing to pay even more. For the beginner that wants some immediate traffic, this can be a great method. Especially if you land on some keywords and ad copies that are converting well for you. When I signed up for bing Ads, I received $75 to use with them. They usually always have some sort of promo going. So make sure to look into that.

Affiliate Marketing Course

One can learn the art of affiliate marketing by searching Youtube videos all day. But doing so, in my opinion, is not a structured way to start. You need a good foundation that only a well-structured course will provide you to make you feel comfortable. This is where a site like Wealthy Affiliate comes into play.

Total Affiliate Marketing Statup Costs

So what does the total cost for all of this come to? Well here is a breakdown of all the products and costs.

Product Price
Hostgator (3 years) $130.81
Godaddy (1 year) $2.00
Aweber (1 month) $19.00
Avada Theme (1 year support) $78.00
Instabuilder $97.00
Logo Design (Average cost) $128.00
Social Media Accounts Free
Hootsuite (free to start) Free
Clickmajick (1 year) $244.00
Stock Unlimited (1 year) $69.00
Canva Free
SEMRush (1 month) $69.95
Google Keyword Planner Free
Google Trends Free
Bing Keyword Research Free
Blue Yeti USB Microphone – Silver $129.00
Logitech HD Webcam C920 $60.00
Wealthy Affiliate (1 month)  $47.00
WordPress for Business: Build An Amazing Site From Scratch course (Usually there is a deal on this site where you can purchase it for less.) $200.00
Total $1,273.76

Let’s See If We Can Bring The Price Down

Let’s say $1,273.76 is not exactly within your budget.

Let’s see what you might be able to do in order to lower your affiliate marketing startup costs.

Cost Analysis PictureAt a bare minimum, I would suggest purchasing the web hosting through Hostgator, your domain through Godaddy, and Email marketing through Aweber. You could even, technically, do without web hosting and a domain. Just go to Blogger.com and start a blog right there. From an SEO point-of-view you are much better off going with your own domain. Especially if you plan on growing your blog into a brand at some point-in-time that’s going to be around for the long-run. Beyond that, you should be able to get away with doing everything else for free.

For example, with the stock photography, instead of using StockUnlimited you could use TheStocks.im. StockUnlimited is much better (but you get what you pay for). TheStocks.im has various sites on the Internet that offer royalty free photos you can use.

I will admit, when it comes to email marketing there are some free methods you can research as well. That said when it comes to email marketing you have to start out on the right foot because switching over later on can be a difficult thing to do. That said, my biggest selling point for Aweber is that they offer great customer support. They can help you with all your email marketing needs and trust me, email marketing campaigns can get tricky as you really start growing and creating complex campaign strategies. They are their to grow with you.

Also, all the other tools are not absolutely needed.  So minus a lot of the tools mentioned, I got the price down to $151.81 to start.

That’s nearly $1000 in savings!

Now I can’t guarantee that’s what it’s going to cost you as prices change from time to time with Hostgator and Godaddy.

Product Price
Hostgator (3 years) $130.81
Godaddy (1 year) $2.00
Aweber (1 month) $19.00
Social Media Accounts Free
Hootsuite (Free to start) Free
TheStocks.im Free
Canva Free
Google Keyword Planner Free
Google Trends Free
Bing Keyword Research Free
Total $151.81

So there it is. All the tools, that in my opinion, you should obtain when getting started in affiliate marketing. I’d like to hear from you as well. Share products with the community that you believe an affiliate marketer can’t live without.

Stay Connected

Want to see how I progress on this journey? Join the community watching me and asking “Will he succeed?”

So will I succeed? That is the question. My answer, is yes, I will succeed (that’s my confidence speaking).

Would you be interested in partaking in on this social experiment of mine? Would you be interested in periodically seeing my progress as I reach milestone goals. You’ll learn from what I do that works and what I do that doesn’t work. Either way, you’ll get some value from it.

I’d love to build a huge community of like-minded people that will follow me on this journey.

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By | 2017-05-22T16:23:09+00:00 April 10th, 2017|Affiliate Marketing|0 Comments

About the Author:

Charles Fisher is the owner and creator of WillISucceed.com.