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Will affiliate marketing still be worthwhile in 2024?

Creation: 17. April 2024
Updated: 17. April 2024

Are you wondering whether affiliate marketing is still a profitable strategy for your online business in 2024? We highlight the latest trends, analyze success rates and discuss income potential to explore what affiliate marketing really means today.

Whether you are looking for insights into industry trends, want to find out which niches are particularly lucrative at the moment or want to optimize your affiliate strategy - here you will find sound information based on the latest available data. But one thing is already clear. The short answer to the question of whether affiliate marketing will still be worthwhile in 2024 can be answered with a resounding yes!

Dynamics and sales potential in affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing has developed impressively since 2016, with growth of 72.5 % according to Google Trends. Driven by the success of influencers and bloggers as well as growing consumer interest in pre-researched product reviews, the range of affiliate initiatives has expanded significantly, leading to a considerable increase in industry revenue. According to the Influencer Marketing Hub's latest benchmark report, the value of the global affiliate marketing industry is expected to grow to 24 billion US dollars by the end of the year. By comparison, the market value in 2022 was USD 16.4 billion, rising to USD 21.1 billion by 2023. These figures illustrate the significant growth trend in the sector during this period.

In terms of income, the picture is particularly optimistic: affiliate marketing continues to open up exceptional earning opportunities in the online sector. On average, an affiliate marketer earns 8,038 US dollars per month, with marketers with more than three years of experience earning up to 9.45 times more than beginners. These figures highlight the enormous growth potential in this area. The average revenue per thousand impressions (RPM) is calculated as follows for revenue per 1000 impressions) for affiliate websites is USD 149.76, which particularly emphasizes the efficiency of affiliate marketing.

In addition, 69.4% of affiliate marketing websites use ads as an additional monetization channel, while 82% of websites that earn six-figure sums annually use both display ads and affiliate products for monetization. In addition, 42.9% of marketers consider affiliate marketing to be a more lucrative source of income compared to monetization through advertising and 31% of web publishers consider it to be their most important source of income. These statistics, provided by Authority Hacker and eMarketer, highlight not only the financial opportunities that affiliate marketing offers, but also its growing importance as a fixture in the digital marketing landscape.

Evolution and potential of affiliate marketing

The affiliate marketing landscape is undergoing a significant transformation through the use of AI in content creation with 79.3% of marketers already using this technology. Blogging remains the leading method of product promotion at 79.1%, while video content is used by 19.3% of marketers to promote affiliate products.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic, 65% of CFOs also plan to continuously increase their investment in affiliate marketing, an indicator of confidence in its effectiveness and growth potential. These developments, documented by data from authorities such as Authority Hacker and AWIN, show that affiliate marketing is constantly evolving and rich in opportunities for those willing to adapt new technologies and strategies.

Key strategies and success factors in affiliate marketing

Success in affiliate marketing is not a product of chance, but the result of a combination of strategic planning, patience and continuous work. Building a strong affiliate presence, whether through blogs, social media or other digital channels, takes time and perseverance. It can often take months before the first significant successes become visible, which underlines the importance of patience and perseverance. Hard work, which manifests itself in the creation of high-quality content, building relationships with networks and brands and constantly learning and adapting to new market conditions, is essential.

A key element for success is organic search traffic, which, according to Authority Hacker, accounts for an average of 78.3% of total traffic. This statistic emphasizes the need for an effective SEO strategy and the production of content that ranks highly in search results.

The global technology company Criteo also points out that 53% of consumers carry out intensive research before making a purchase in order to make the best possible decisions. This emphasizes the importance for affiliates to not just want to sell, but to actually provide helpful and informative content that serves consumers in their decision-making process.

Overall, success in affiliate marketing is a combination of time investment, high-quality content creation and effective SEO as well as understanding and satisfying the needs of the target group. By taking these aspects into account, affiliates can create a solid basis for sustainable success.

When does affiliate marketing make sense?

Affiliate marketing proves to be particularly useful and promising under certain conditions. Here are the ideal conditions under which affiliate marketing not only makes sense, but can also be extremely rewarding:

  • If you have a deep passion for a particular topic or niche, affiliate marketing is an excellent choice. This enthusiasm is contagious and can inspire your readers or followers to follow your recommendations. Your passion becomes the fuel that powers the success of your affiliate marketing efforts.
  • Sound expertise in a specific area builds trust and increases the credibility of your recommendations. Expertise means that you can not only recommend products, but also provide valuable insights and detailed reviews that go beyond superficial information.
  • Do you already have an established readership or follower base? Then affiliate marketing is a fantastic way to generate additional income. This is particularly effective if you are already drawing traffic to your product reviews or topic-relevant content.
  • If you already sell your own products, the integration of affiliate offers can diversify your income streams. By promoting affiliate products that are complementary to your own, you can increase the overall value for your customers. This can be done by bundling products or offering exclusive deals that provide your customers with additional benefits.

By integrating these key elements into your affiliate marketing strategy, you can not only maximize the effectiveness of your efforts, but also build a stronger connection with your target audience. The combination of passion, expertise, a solid base of followers or readers and the strategic selection of affiliate offers creates a solid foundation for success in affiliate marketing.

When affiliate marketing does not make sense

Affiliate marketing is not the silver bullet in all circumstances and there are certainly scenarios in which it can prove less beneficial or even counterproductive. Here are some potential pitfalls and situations where affiliate marketing may not be the best strategy:

  • The quality of the products you advertise plays a decisive role. Recommendations for products that do not deliver what they promise or have a bad reputation can cause lasting damage to your image and the trust that your target group places in you.
  • A lack of genuine interest or enthusiasm for the niche you are working in can be a major obstacle. Without this passion, it becomes difficult to create authentic and compelling content that truly engages your audience and moves them to action.
  • Affiliate marketing is not a quick route to riches. It takes time and patience, especially when building traffic and generating sales. Expecting quick profits can lead to frustration and has already ended many affiliate marketing attempts prematurely.
  • Relying solely on affiliate marketing as a source of income can be risky, especially if you're just starting out. Diversification is the key to a stable online income.

Strategies to avoid these pitfalls

  1. Choose products carefully and only advertise those that you can really stand behind. Thorough research and personal experience with the products can help here.
  2. If you haven't yet found a passion for your niche, look for ways to develop it. Delve deeper into the topic and look for aspects that fascinate you personally.
  3. Understand that success takes time. Set realistic goals and celebrate small successes along the way.
  4. Consider tapping into other sources of income in addition to affiliate marketing. This can include digital products, advisory services or even our own physical products.

By keeping these points in mind and taking a balanced strategic approach to affiliate marketing, you can minimize the risks and maximize the chances of being successful with your online presence.

Advantages and disadvantages of affiliate marketing

While the benefits of affiliate marketing are numerous and enticing, it is crucial to look at the other side of the coin as well. As with any business strategy, there are challenges and potential pitfalls that need to be considered. Below we take a look at some of the disadvantages that can be associated with affiliate marketing to paint a complete picture of this popular source of income.

Advantages of affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is characterized by low entry barriers and minimal risk, as there is no need to worry about physical products, warehousing or shipping. These aspects make it particularly attractive for individuals who want to generate passive income. As an affiliate marketer, you also enjoy significant freedom and flexibility: you are your own boss, can work from anywhere and determine your own working hours. The start-up costs are comparatively low and are largely limited to web hosting, the purchase of a domain name and a reliable Internet connection. Another significant advantage is the scalability of the business model. Successful affiliate campaigns can be easily expanded, bringing the potential for significant growth without requiring proportionally more effort.

Disadvantages of affiliate marketing

Despite its many advantages, affiliate marketing also faces a number of challenges. The landscape is highly competitive and it can be difficult to establish yourself in certain niches. In addition, success in this area requires the acquisition of specific skills and knowledge such as SEO and content creation, which can be time-consuming. It can also take a while for the work invested to pay off, especially in terms of search engine rankings and generating significant revenue.

Advantages and disadvantages of affiliate marketing at a glance


  • Low entry barriers and minimal risk
  • No need to worry about physical products, warehousing or shipping
  • Significant freedom and flexibility: work from anywhere and self-determined working hours
    Low start-up costs: web hosting, domain name, Internet connection
  • Scalability of the business model with considerable growth potential


  • Extremely competitive landscape
  • Difficulties in establishing themselves in certain niches
  • Requirement of specific skills and knowledge, such as SEO and content creation
  • Time investment until results are achieved, especially with regard to search engine ranking
  • Dependence on affiliate networks and programs that can have a direct impact on income

This juxtaposition shows that affiliate marketing can be a rewarding endeavor for those with a strategic approach, patience and a willingness to learn necessary skills, despite the challenges posed by high competition and the time it takes to achieve visible success.

Future prospects for affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing confirms its potential as a profitable strategy in 2024. With continued industry growth and the increasing popularity of online shopping, it remains an attractive source of income. The advantages are obvious: low entry barriers, the opportunity to work from any location and the prospect of a passive income continue to attract many people.

Don't be afraid of AI - in fact, it offers new opportunities to optimize affiliate marketing campaigns and improve customer experiences through personalization. This advanced technology underlines the importance of continuous training and utilizing technological developments.

However, success in affiliate marketing requires commitment and a willingness to continuously educate yourself, especially in areas such as SEO and content creation. Competition is intense, but for those who are willing to put in the work, the chances are good.

Short and sweet

Affiliate marketing will continue to offer significant opportunities for committed and passionate marketers in the future. Despite challenges such as high competition and the need to acquire specialist knowledge, the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. With the right strategy and a long-term commitment, affiliate marketing will still be a worthwhile endeavor in 2024 and beyond.

Article written by Christof
Developer with passion. PHP, HTML, CSS have accompanied me since I was 14 years old. .NET applications and services have been part of my profile for a long time. Rounded off by good knowledge of marketing, image editing and video editing.

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