Here at Streamlabs, we’re no strangers to teaching content creators how to make money (prime example, our post about making money on YouTube). If you’ve read one of these blog posts, you know that affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to monetize as a content creator because you’re in control. While income streams such as sponsorships are highly dependent on factors you can’t control, affiliate revenue, aka revenue made from sharing commissionable links, depends more on your ability to promote and share regularly.
In the beginning, when you’re creating stellar content but not making money, you need to take advantage of affiliate marketing networks to start seeing some return on your investment. Ahead, we’ve compiled a list of the best affiliate marketing networks to join as a content creator, along with what you need to apply and get paid.
Requirements: Must apply with your website, mobile app, or social network that’s public and has an established organic following/likes (500+ in most cases)
Payment Method: Paid by Direct Deposit in 60 days via check, bank transfer, or Amazon gift card after hitting the $10 threshold
Quick question—how many times have you purchased from Amazon this year? How about in your lifetime? Chances are you’ve lost count at this point. There are over 157 million Amazon Prime users in the US alone, and this is projected to grow to over 160 million by 2023. You can’t go on any social media platform without falling into a rabbit hole of Amazon recommendations. Those promoting them typically make pretty good consistent affiliate income because people can’t resist. Amazon is convenient, the prices are generally affordable, and your package will likely be on your doorstep before you remember that you’ve ordered it.
Although Amazon is technically only one retailer, many brands are available on the platform, from small businesses to big brand names. The one downside of the Amazon Associates program is that the commission rates can be relatively low (as low as 1% in categories such as physical games and as high as 10% in categories such as luxury beauty during non-promotional periods). However, keep in mind that conversions to Amazon affiliate links may be high because of the site’s popularity which will help balance the low rates.
Requirements: Complete application with appropriate information on where you’ll be promoting products for Walmart to review (within 24 hours)
Payment Method: Within 90 days of earning commission paid via Direct Deposit
Similar to Amazon, Walmart is another retailer-specific affiliate marketing program that’s totally worth signing up for. For starters, you can find almost anything at Walmart, and your audience will likely appreciate your affordable recommendations for the retail giant they know and love. The downside is that, like Amazon, the rates are pretty low (anywhere from 1% to 4%) but can be balanced with a high volume of sales.
While many affiliates only pay commission to purchases made through affiliate links within 24 hours, the Walmart referral window is three days, so long as your link was the last click that drove the shopper to Walmart’s website.
Requirements: No specified metrics. A passionate creator must create consistent content for an engaged following.
Payment Method: Paid via Paypal on the 1st of the month when your confirmed commissions equal $50 or greater.
Magiclinks is a newer and more popular affiliate marketing network amongst content creators. This affiliate marketing platform has many brand partners such as Sephora, Best Buy, and Nordstrom. In addition to having a user-friendly desktop site, there is an accompanying app where you can create links on the go or check your stats. One very unique feature of Magiclinks is that you can also create Obessedwith.it content which allows you to make posts from any social platform shoppable (i.e., beauty products used in a TikTok tutorial) or create a sorted list of product recommendations (I.e., your favorite tools for gaming).
One great thing about Magiclinks (outside of being a fantastic affiliate marketing platform) is that you can also apply for available gifted and sponsored campaign opportunities without leaving the app. That’s two potential revenue streams hailing from one single app.
Requirements: Must be over 18 years old, comply with all state, federal and local laws, and cannot be a provider of goods and services.
Payment Method: Payments are made via check, bank, or PayPal within 60 days.
Rakuten is a global affiliate network that has been voted the industry’s #1 Affiliate Marketing Network for 11 years. While Rakuten doesn’t have a long laundry list of brands they partner with (there’s roughly 1000), they have some pretty big names such as JetBlue, Udemy, and Virgin, for example. All commission rates vary based on the advertiser’s terms.
LTK (Formally rewardStyle and LIKEtoKNOW.it)
Requirements: Have a public social media profile and an engaged following on at least one social media network. Must create shoppable content.
Payment Method: Paid via PayPal when “closed” commissions reach at least $100. Commissions generally remain “open” for 120-150 days.
LTK is all about uniting creators, brands, and shoppers and has driven over $3B in annual sales. Featuring over 5,000 retailers and trusted by over 200K creators across 100+ countries, LTK is a creator first affiliate marketing platform that you should put at the top of your goal list. Similar to other affiliate marketing platforms made with creators in mind, you can also score brand collaborations through LTK. Some other helpful tools that LTK has include their extensive resource library to help creators maximize their revenue, a shoppable post creator, and a shopping widget.
Requirements: Must post original shoppable content on a qualifying blog or social media channels
Payment Method: Payments are made monthly via PayPal (so long as the creator meets the $25 minimum balance)
You may be noticing a theme here—there are many affiliate marketing networks for content creators whose primary platform is their site or social media. ShopStyle Collective also does a tremendous job at providing affiliates with tips and specialized content to help actively increase their earnings, such as industry news and strategy updates. Also, ShopStyle has a badge system that rewards you when you hit specific milestones in the hope that you’ll be motivated to keep going.
FYI, ShopStyle is yet another platform that is a game-changer for your affiliate marketing efforts and if you’re looking to score sponsored campaigns.
Requirements: Fill out the application form. Even if you have a free domain, you can apply and use this network—which is not the standard (this is great for getting your feet wet with affiliate marketing).
Payment Method: Payments are made monthly and processed after 60 days. Qualified publishers/affiliates can use advance payment services to get paid within as little as seven days.
FlexOffers is a unique affiliate marketing network because you don’t have to be a huge blogger or social media personality to get approved. Additionally, there are over 12,000 advertisers on the platform ranging from digital products such as Hulu and retailers such as Samsung. FlexOffers is constantly adding new advertisers, which means you have many options to drive sales under one umbrella.
While we mainly spoke about affiliate networks that give creators access to a ton of brands in one place, if you use a service you love such as Streamlabs or tech gear for your content such as products from Logitech, it is worth joining programs like these to promote products and services you genuinely love.
No matter what affiliate marketing network you choose to go with, the one thing you have to remember is that it won’t work unless you do. Excelling at affiliate marketing and creating a consistent revenue stream from it will require lots of hard work and self-promotion but it’s possible. Now, go apply and maximize that link in your bio (using an all-in-one link in bio tool like Willow) and drive traffic to your commissionable link