37 High Paying Affiliate Programs 2022 (Best Commissions)

May 13, 2022

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For affiliate marketers, success partly depends on the commission rates they will receive. I tend to promote high-paying merchants that pay at least 30 percent or $75 per sale. If I sell $100,000 worth of goods, I’ll earn $30,000, for example. On the other hand, if I focus too much on programs that pay low or single-digit commission rates, it will be tougher to reach my revenue goals. For instance, at a 5 percent commission rate, I would make $5,000 per $100,000 sold. Let’s review the best high-paying affiliate programs for beginners and experienced marketers in this post.

It may seem obvious to promote programs that pay well. However, I see many affiliates painstakingly market low-paying merchants and programs, such as Amazon Associates, which tops out at 10 percent. I’m not suggesting affiliates only promote programs with high payouts, but they need to strike a balance and understand the math of selling thousands of dollars. For example, if you sold one Advanced Shopify plan a month for twelve months, you would earn $7,176 for the year ($598 x 12 months). That amount is probably more rewarding than what many other programs pay for the same effort.

What niches, categories, and products pay the highest commission rates? There are high-paying programs in every niche and category. However, SaaS, e-commerce, and marketing software companies tend to lead the pack because they avoid the costs associated with physical products, including manufacturing, storage, and fulfillment. For example, an email marketing provider doesn’t necessarily incur more expenses for each new customer. Therefore, it can be more generous with its affiliate commission rates. Many software and SaaS companies also have recurring affiliate programs that pay for the life of the customer.

High-Paying NichesCommission Examples
E-commerce apps$1,500 per sale
Business apps$200 per sale
Marketing apps$200 per sale
SaaS apps300% per sale
E-learning50% per sale
Software apps80% per sale
VPN apps50% per sale
Web hosting150% per sale

Best High Paying Affiliate Programs

Most of the merchants in this list have a cookie duration of 30 days or more. You’ll find these and many more lucrative offers on the top affiliate networks, including ShareASale, Impact, and CJ Affiliate. To qualify for my list, the merchant must:

  • Pay a minimum commission rate of 30 percent or $75
  • Have an excellent business reputation
  • Be a top consideration in its market

Marketing Affiliate Programs

ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign gives you the email marketing, marketing automation, and CRM tools you need to create incredible customer experiences. ActiveCampaign pays a recurring commission rate of up to 30 percent. Learn more and join the ActiveCampaign affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to 30%
  • Cookie duration: 90 days
  • Affiliate software/network: In-house

GetResponse

GetResponse is an all-in-one digital marketing platform, offering email marketing, landing pages, conversion funnels, webinar hosting, opt-in forms, web push notifications, and other marketing automation tools. GetResponse pays a recurring commission rate of 33 percent or a one-time commission of $100. Learn more and join the GetResponse affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 33%/$100
  • Cookie duration: 120 days
  • Affiliate software/network: In-house and CJ Affiliate

HubSpot

HubSpot offers a comprehensive suite of apps for marketing, sales, service, CMS, and operations. Each app comes with a range of features and analytics/reporting for businesses of all sizes. HubSpot pays a recurring commission rate of 15 percent or a one-time commission of 100 percent on the referral’s first subscription payment. Learn more and join the HubSpot affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to 100%
  • Cookie duration: 90 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Impact

MailerLite

MailerLite provides the latest email marketing features to help you grow subscribers and build stronger relationships, including design editors, templates, opt-in forms, marketing automation, and more. MailerLite pays a recurring commission rate of 30 percent. Learn more and join the MailerLite affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 30%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: In-house

Semrush

Semrush is a powerful and versatile competitive intelligence suite for online marketers. It features research tools for SEO, PPC, social media, and video advertising. Semrush pays a one-time commission rate of $200. Learn more and join the Semrush affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: $200
  • Cookie duration: 120 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Impact

ShareASale

ShareASale is a leading affiliate network with the tools and technology to support advertisers and publishers. ShareASale pays commission rates of $150 for qualifying merchant signups and $30 for qualifying affiliate signups. Learn more and join the ShareASale affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to $150
  • Cookie duration: 60 days
  • Affiliate software/network: ShareASale

Sprout Social

Sprout Social is a social media management and optimization platform for brands and agencies of all sizes. Its platform offers deep social media listening, analytics, social management, and customer care. Sprout Social pays a commission rate of $75 plus 15 percent for up to six months. Learn more and join the Sprout Social affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: $75 + 15% recurring
  • Cookie duration: 60 days
  • Affiliate software/network: CJ Affiliate and PartnerStack

TubeBuddy

TubeBuddy is the #1 YouTube tool and browser extension for channel management, keyword and tag research, video SEO, competitor insights, bulk processing, marketing, and more. TubeBuddy pays a commission rate of up to 30 percent. Learn more and join the TubeBuddy affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to 30%
  • Cookie duration: Lifetime
  • Affiliate software/network: In-house

VidIQ

VidIQ helps YouTubers and marketers grow their presence and brand on YouTube with a suite of tools for keyword research, SEO, analytics, and more. VidIQ pays a commission rate of up to 25 percent. Learn more and join the VidIQ affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to 25%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: In-house

E-commerce Affiliate Programs

AliDropship

AliDropship helps online entrepreneurs earn money with AliExpress. It offers plugins, extensions, custom-made websites, themes, hosting, learning resources, and more. Debutify pays a one-time commission rate of up to 100 percent. Learn more and join the AliDropship affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to 100%
  • Cookie duration: Up to 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: In-house

Debutify

Debutify is a top-rated, user-friendly, and high-converting free Shopify theme with 25+ premium add-ons to increase your e-commerce sales. Debutify pays a recurring commission rate of up to 50 percent. Learn more and join the Debutify affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to 50%
  • Cookie duration: 90 days
  • Affiliate software/network: ShareASale, Impact, and LinkMink

BigCommerce

BigCommerce is an e-commerce platform that creates customized online stores with built-in features, such as marketing tools, analytics, and hundreds of integrated apps. BigCommerce pays a one-time commission rate of up to $1,500. Learn more and join the BigCommerce affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to $1,500
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Impact

DoorDash for Merchants

DoorDash is a last-mile logistics company that connects consumers with their favorite local and national businesses. DoorDash is bringing communities closer, one doorstep at a time. DoorDash pays a one-time commission rate of $200. Learn more and join the DoorDash affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: $200
  • Cookie duration: 90 days
  • Affiliate software/network: PartnerStack

Shift4Shop (FKA 3dcart)

Shift4Shop makes it easy to build the perfect website for your business and start selling your products/services online with product and order management, marketing tools, and more. Shift4Shop pays a $100 commission per sale. Learn more and join the Shift4Shop affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: $100
  • Cookie duration: 120 days
  • Affiliate software/network: ShareASale

Shopify

Shopify provides everything you need to sell online, on social media, and in person. Create your store, manage products, accept payments, ship, and integrate with other apps. Shopify pays a recurring commission rate of 100 percent on the referral’s first two subscription payments. Learn more and join the Shopify affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 200%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: In-house

 

Travel Affiliate Programs

Travelpayouts

Travelpayouts is the largest travel affiliate network. Affiliates can join various travel-related affiliate programs, such as Booking.com, GetYourGuide, Discover Cars, and more. With Travelpayouts, you can manage all your programs from a single dashboard and streamline commission payments. Learn more and join the Travelpayouts network.

  • Commission rate: Up to 50%
  • Cookie duration: Avg of 30 days
  • Programs in the network: 80+

Skyscanner

Skyscanner is a leading global travel search site providing instant online comparisons for flights, car hire, and hotels. Skyscanner pays a one-time commission rate of up to 50 percent. Learn more and join the Skyscanner affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to 50%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: CJ Affiliate

Education Affiliate Programs

Coursera

Coursera offers online courses through partnerships with hundreds of top-ranked universities, including Stanford and Columbia. Learners can take courses, specializations, and degrees. Coursera pays a one-time commission rate of up to 45 percent. Learn more and join the Coursera affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to 45%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Rakuten Advertising

Domestika

Domestika is a fast-growing creative community where top experts share their knowledge and skills through professionally produced online courses. Domestika pays a one-time commission rate of 40 percent. Learn more and join the Domestika affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 40%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: In-house

Pluralsight

Pluralsight offers extensive online developer, creative, and IT courses that are taught by industry experts. It offers 6,000+ courses to businesses and individuals. Pluralsight pays a one-time commission rate of up to 50 percent. Learn more and join the Pluralsight affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to 50%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Impact

Web Hosting Affiliate Programs

Bluehost

Bluehost is one of the largest website hosting providers supporting millions of websites globally. Bluehost pays a one-time commission of $65 per sale. Learn more and join the Bluehost affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: $65
  • Cookie duration: 120 days
  • Affiliate software/network: In-house and CJ Affiliate

Hostinger

Hostinger offers fast and user-friendly web hosting solutions at a price nobody can beat. Hostinger pays a one-time commission rate of 60 percent. Learn more and join the Hostinger affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 60%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Impact and CJ Affiliate

Liquid Web

Liquid Web provides managed web hosting and data center solutions. It offers cloud, VPS, dedicated, managed, and private cloud plans. Liquid Web pays a one-time commission rate of up to 150 percent. Learn more and join the Liquid Web affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to 150%
  • Cookie duration: 90 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Impact

SiteGround

SiteGround is a leading web hosting company with millions of customers. It offers shared and cloud hosting, dedicated servers, and domain services. SiteGround pays a one-time commission rate of up to $125. Learn more and join the SiteGround affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to $125
  • Cookie duration: 60 days
  • Affiliate software/network: In-house

Weebly

Weebly makes it easy to create a high-quality website, blog, or online store. Millions of people use Weebly to bring their unique ideas to life. Weebly pays a one-time commission rate of 30 percent. Learn more and join the Weebly affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 30%
  • Cookie duration: 120 days
  • Affiliate software/network: ShareASale

WP Engine

WP Engine provides managed WordPress hosting for sites around the world. It offers robust support and optimized solutions for WordPress. WP Engine pays a one-time commission rate of up to $200. Learn more and join the WP Engine affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to $200
  • Cookie duration: 180 days
  • Affiliate software/network: ShareASale

VPN Affiliate Programs

Ivacy VPN

Ivacy is a leading VPN service that makes the digital world safer and more accessible for everyone. It has apps for all the major operating systems and browsers. Ivacy pays a one-time commission rate of 40 percent. Learn more and join the Ivacy VPN affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 40%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: ShareASale

NordVPN

NordVPN is a top-rated VPN that offers military-grade online security and protection applications. NordVPN pays a one-time commission rate of 30 percent. Learn more and join the NordVPN affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 30%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Impact & CJ Affiliate

VuzeVPN

VuzeVPN protects users’ privacy, keeps browsing anonymous, and offers best-in-class security and encryption. Users are also protected from viruses, malware, adware, and phishing attacks. VuzeVPN pays a one-time commission rate of 50 percent. Learn more and join the VuzeVPN affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 50%
  • Cookie duration: 45 days
  • Affiliate software/network: CJ Affiliate

 

Other High Paying Affiliate Programs

Audext

Audext offers advanced transcription software services to convert your audio and video files to text. It supports various file formats, including WAV, MP3, MP4, OGG, etc. It has an in-built editor, automatic timestamping, and other useful features. Audext pays a one-time commission rate of 30 percent. Learn about the Audext affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 30%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: ShareASale

Apple

Apple’s affiliate programs enable you to promote millions of songs and albums, as well as books, audiobooks, movies, news, and TV shows. Apple pays a one-time commission rate of up to 400 percent. Learn more and join the Apple affiliate program.

  • Commission rates: Apple Music (100%), Apple TV+ (300%), and Apple News+ (400%)
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Partnerize

AppSumo

AppSumo is a daily deals website for digitally distributed goods and online services. AppSumo pays a one-time commission rate of up to 100 percent. Learn more and join the AppSumo affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to 100%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Impact

Canva

Canva is a graphic design tool that helps people create images, logos, thumbnails, posters, and more. It provides access to over a million photographs and templates. Canva pays a one-time commission rate of up to 80 percent. Learn more and join the Canva affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 25% – 80%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Impact

Fiverr

Fiverr is the largest online marketplace for freelance services starting. It also offers courses, exclusive benefits, and small business software. Fiverr pays a one-time commission rate of up to $150 or $10 plus a 10 percent recurring rate of up to 12 months. Learn more and join the Fiverr affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to $150
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Cellxpert and CJ Affiliate

FreshBooks

FreshBooks offers small business accounting and management software, including the ability to send invoices, track time, manage receipts, expenses, and accept credit cards. FreshBooks pays a one-time commission rate of up to $200. Learn more and join the FreshBooks affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to $200
  • Cookie duration: 120 days
  • Affiliate software/network: ShareASale

Jotform

Jotform is a full-featured online form builder that makes it easy to create robust forms, collect important data, and get leads. Jotform pays a one-time commission rate of 30 percent. Learn more and join the Jotform affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 30%
  • Cookie duration: 60 days
  • Affiliate software/network: In-house

Inc Authority

Inc Authority also offers a variety of other services to help you launch your business mainstream, protect your brand, and build for the future. Get custom websites and logos, business plans, trademarks, building business credit, and more. Inc Authority pays a one-time commission rate of $100. Learn more and join the Inc Authority affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: $100
  • Cookie duration: 120 days
  • Affiliate software/network: ShareASale

Placeit

Placeit is a mockup and design tool that allows its users to create beautiful visuals and marketing materials instantly and straight from their browsers. Placeit pays a one-time commission rate of 50 percent. Learn more and join the Placeit affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 50%
  • Cookie duration: 60 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Impact

Sucuri

Sucuri is an all-in-one platform for website security, protection, performance, and monitoring. Sucuri pays a one-time commission rate of up to $210. Learn more and join the Sucuri affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: Up to $210
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: CJ Affiliate

STDcheck

STDcheck takes the embarrassment and hassles out of conventional STD testing. It provides fast, affordable, and private STD testing to adults and minors at thousands of locations nationwide. STDcheck pays a one-time commission rate of 40 percent. Learn more and join the STDcheck affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 40%
  • Cookie duration: 45 days
  • Affiliate software/network: CJ Affiliate

Upwork

Upwork is the world’s work marketplace connecting millions of businesses with independent talent globally. It serves everyone from one-person start-ups to 30% of the Fortune 100 with a powerful trust-driven platform. Upwork pays a one-time commission rate of 70 percent. Learn more and join the Upwork affiliate program.

  • Commission rate: 70%
  • Cookie duration: 30 days
  • Affiliate software/network: Impact

Your Next Move

Jump onboard the high-paying affiliate program yacht because it’s where the big money is being made. That mindset helps me to make five figures annually in affiliate commissions. By contrast, promoting companies that pay low commission rates or that try to nickel and dime you is how you’ll fail to meet your goals.

You should also consider promoting high-ticket affiliate programs because low commission rates will be offset by large affiliate payments. Case in point, a furniture company pays a 10 percent commission rate but sees an average purchase of $2,000, producing an average commission of $200.

How to Choose Affiliate Programs

Affiliate programs aren’t created equally. Some are excellent, while others are terrible. Being able to distinguish one from another is how affiliates become successful. Let’s review the critical factors that determine the viability of an affiliate program and merchant.

Acceptance Rate

In a perfect world, affiliates could see the rate at which their requests to join programs are accepted. Unfortunately, Impact is the only network to display that metic. I typically don’t bother applying to programs that have low acceptance rates of under 50 percent.

Conversion Rate

The best-performing merchants frequently convert traffic into sales. A conversion rate specifies the frequency at which a user becomes a lead or paying customer. Suppose a website gets 100 visitors. If one of those people makes a purchase, the conversion rate will be 1 percent.

Many affiliate tracking apps and networks provide conversion rates on their dashboards and through reporting. Affiliates can also manually calculate. Anything above a conversion rate of half a percent is satisfactory. Marketers should not expect conversion rates of 2 percent or more.

Earnings Per Click

Earnings per click (EPC) indicates how much money an affiliate program is generating per click. For example, a merchant registers 1,000 unique clicks and generates $50 in sales. Its EPC will be $0.05. EPC can also represent how much an affiliate is making per click.

EPC data is available on many affiliate networks, and a comparison can be made between similar merchants, products, and services. A low EPC might suggest that the merchant’s conversion rate is low, the merchant is new, or there are tracking issues.

Without EPC or conversion rate data, it’s impossible to conclude how a merchant is performing. Therefore, you must be able to view performance data, including clicks and sales.

Commission Rate

A commission rate of 20 percent, or more, is what I seek. Regarding fixed commissions, I’m open-minded. An advertiser who pays well wants to:

  • Scale its program and revenues
  • Build profitable and mutually beneficial relationships
  • Reward affiliates for their activities

Merchants who pay less than 20 percent don’t grab my attention and active participation. I avoid advertisers who pay single to low double-digit commission rates (or who nickel and dime publishers).

Note: Some industries and sectors pay low commission rates because they operate on thin margins, for example, clothing merchants.

 

Cookie Duration

Giving marketers one or a few days to convert traffic is ridiculous and unfair. By contrast, a 30-day cookie duration allows for prospects to become customers and affiliates to get credit for their promotional efforts.

Although thirty-day referral periods are a performance marketing standard, a minimum of 90 days would be more beneficial to each party. I focus on merchants that provide ample time to convert.

Payments

Payment processing involves how and when to receive commissions. “How” refers to the options given to affiliates to receive their commissions, such as a bank, PayPal, cheque, and so on. “When” refers to the payout threshold and timeliness of payments. For instance, GetResponse has a limit of $50 and pays in the month following the month of the account referral.

Many merchants have reasonable thresholds of zero to $100. On affiliate networks, $50 is the standard. A low payout threshold keeps affiliates motivated and engaged. Alternatively, companies with limited payout options or high thresholds are the ones I usually don’t join or promote.

Affiliate Marketing Software

Affiliate tracking software is the cornerstone of success, and there are excellent and abysmal applications in the market. Reliable tracking, user-friendly dashboards, and robust reporting make for superior user experiences. Activity data—such as impressions, clicks, conversion rates, and sales—should be available. Applications that omit activity data and reporting make it difficult to track and evaluate performance. The Impact affiliate network serves as my benchmark for affiliate tracking software.

Deep Linking

Deep linking is the practice by which an affiliate creates a link to a specific page on the merchant’s site. For example, instead of using a generic homepage affiliate link, I can link to an article that relates to my post. Deep linking has the potential to increase conversion rates because traffic is sent to targeted landing pages. Many affiliate tracking apps offer deep linking, but advertisers must enable it.

Program Management

Merchants that are committed to the growth of their affiliate sales will assign someone to the task. An affiliate manager can make or break a program, and I’m happy to leave or skip programs that employ the wrong person/agency to run things. Most affiliate managers who I deal with are pleasant and responsive. However, I do come across boneheads who have no clue what they’re doing.

Terms & Policies

A program’s terms and policies are worth reading because you want to ensure they align with your marketing ideas, goals, and activities. Also, you want to abide by the merchant’s rules to avoid disciplinary action. For instance, most merchants prohibit publishers from using specific keywords for search engine marketing (SEM) because affiliates may increase bid prices.

Free Trials & Plans

I like merchants that offer free trials and plans. They allow users to experience products and services without barriers. If the merchant’s goods are excellent, users will convert. My most profitable partners fall into this group.

Marketing Materials

Advertising materials can help increase brand awareness and conversion rates. Merchants should offer marketing materials that are useful, appealing, and proven through split testing. I’ve gotten excited about programs only to be disappointed by their marketing materials, creative assets, and banners.

Company Status

A company’s or person’s reputation is everything, and I focus on promoting companies that attract terrific customer reviews. For example, I’m comfortable marketing Wise because it has an “Excellent” rating on Trustpilot based on thousands of reviews. Secondly, marketplace dominance is something I consider because I want to promote winners, not losers. I want my audience to try and buy goods on the way up, not down. Case in point, that’s why I promote Shopify over its competitors, including BigCommerce, Wix, Squarespace, ClickFunnels, and so forth.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are affiliate networks free to join?

Affiliate networks are free to join for publishers, but advertisers must pay to use. If a network demands a fee, run the other way.

How many networks should I join?

You should join as many networks as you require to access the merchants and items that you want to promote.

What affiliate network is the best?

The best affiliate network is the one that provides you with the merchants and programs to support your goals. My favorite networks are Impact and ShareASale.

What should I do if my application gets declined?

If your application gets declined to join a network or program, send an email for more information. Some advertisers are selective and have specific requirements for publishers to meet; for example, the publisher must have a United States home address.

Do affiliate networks have rules to follow?

Yes, they do. The rules are in the partnership agreement, terms and conditions, or terms of service. Advertisers also have terms and policies to follow; for instance, the affiliate cannot bid on trademarked terms. Failure to abide by network and advertiser rules can lead to immediate account suspension or termination.

Is ClickBank legit?

ClickBank is a legit company. However, it tends to attract get-rich-quick internet marketers and “fake gurus.” Secondly, affiliates are unlikely to find reputable companies on ClickBank. In the few dealings I’ve had with them, I’ve been disappointed.

What’s the best affiliate program?

There are many excellent affiliate programs that pay high commission rates. For example, TubeBuddy pays recurring commissions of up to 50 percent. However, the best affiliate program depends on your niche or category.

Is affiliate marketing a scam?

Affiliate marketing is not a scam. It’s a legit advertising model that compensates affiliates for sending traffic to websites. Merchants pay affiliates for sales and leads. However, some merchants intentionally defraud affiliates by not providing factual activity data or compensating marketers for their efforts.

How much can you make with affiliate marketing?

Affiliates can earn hundreds to thousands monthly, depending on how much traffic they send to advertisers. Some affiliates report making $10,000+ per month. However, it can take months or years to make a sizable income.

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