Affiliate marketing is one of the oldest ways of making money online in Canada and it can be very lucrative if you focus on the right programs. Merchants may have an in-house affiliate program or join networks like Share-A-Sale, where thousands of website owners may partner up with them for a percentage of sales they make. Affiliates add the merchants’ banners to their website, or write content around a text link. They can also promote merchants in their newsletters. Clicks on the links are tracked and commissions are paid through the network or directly if the program is independently operated.
There are thousands of affiliate (partner) programs available to Canadian website owners and bloggers, which makes it difficult to select a few to focus on. We all want to choose the most lucrative offers but it’s hard to say which ones will be successful. Some may pay less but convert more, or vice versa. The final outcome will depend on how well the program is matched to your website visitors and how good you are at affiliate marketing in general.
You will also want to consider seasonal shopping, which starts earlier online to allow for shipping time. “Seasonal” can be anything from calendar holidays to actual seasons, such as promoting school supplies and wedding affiliates during the Summer months, and tropical destination travel in Winter. Additionally, if your target market includes Canadians you’ll need merchants that are based in Canada or ship to / serve Canada (all of the merchants listed below fall into these categories).
A little inside info can go a long way in affiliate marketing. I manage several websites and blogs, a number of which participate in affiliate programs to generate revenue. There is a broad range of sectors covered between them, making this compilation beneficial for most affiliate marketers. I’ve ranked them according to the amount they brought in for each individual website, and combined totals when multiple sites earned from the same merchant. I’ll be doing this for you every month or so in the hopes of saving you some time, and ultimately increasing your income.
Top 10 Earning Affiliate Programs for January, 2016
Our top performing affiliate programs in January for Canada are a mixed bag. January is usually slow in retail so many stores dropped down the ranking. However, new year resolutions inspire purchases in self improvement and business products or services. We also saw an uptick in products or services which save consumers money, as many recuperate from holiday spending.
1. World Wide Brands – Offers lifetime access to upwards of 10,000 wholesale companies and drop shippers in Canada and around the World. Members also enjoy dozens of drop shipping training videos, market research, mobile access, and a discussion forum. Pays a 25% affiliate commission per sale.
2. Pet Wellbeing Inc. – With a shipping location in Canada, Pet Wellbeing performs well for us. It’s one of the better paying pet niche programs (most are 10% or less). Earn 15% of sales of natural pet health and wellness products.
3. Vitabase Health Supplements – Vitamins and supplements with global shipping. You earn 25% commission on Vitabase brand orders and 10% of all other orders.
4. Template Monster – 46,000+ Website and eCommerce templates for everything imaginable, including HTML, WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, PrestaShop, Magento, Moto, WooCommerce and many more. Their affiliate program pays 30-50%.
5. eBates Canada – Canadian shoppers only have to click through eBates to their favourite online shopping destination, to automatically receive a percentage of their purchase back. It has probably gained in popularity due to our “every little bit helps” economy. eBates Canada pays $5 for referrals after you join and you get $5 free when you sign up.
6. Wishpond – Lead generation software for creating landing pages and contests (Facebook sweepstakes, photo contests, Instagram hashtag contests, etc), track leads, automate eMail campaigns and more. Wishpond is based in Canada. Earn 30% of sales.
7. Starwest Botanicals – A huge selection of high quality, bulk herbs and essential oils. I get the vast majority of my herbs & oils from Starwest, in fact. They’ll pay you 15% per sale.
8. Clickbank Referral Program – One of the top affiliate networks for digital products (eBooks, courses, etc.). Earn 22% of a new vendor’s activation charge, plus 5% of ClickBank’s typical markup of each sale that your recruited vendor makes for one year.
9. HostPapa – Fully featured website hosting based in Canada, starting at a very competitive $2.95 per month. Chances are the increased popularity of Host Papa is also due to the low Canadian dollar, plus it’s powered by green energy. Their affiliate program pays up to $200 per sale. If you use them as your own host you’ll have plenty of opportunities to recommend them regardless of what your niche is.
10. Points.com – Allows users to keep all of their loyalty activity in one place, with one login. Store and organize 110+ airline, hotel, retail, and credit card programs from around the globe in your wallet. Earn 2.50% – 10.00%/sale and $0.25/lead.
- Free, extensive affiliate training and affiliate marketing tools can be had through the masterminds at Affilorama.
- Free affiliate marketing courses, community and more from The Wealthy Affiliate.
- If you’re looking for a profitable niche that isn’t too saturated, start with keyword research and competitive intelligence using the acclaimed Long Tail Pro tool that “super affiliates” love.
What was your top affiliate marketing earner in January, 2016? Please share your success or questions in the comments below.
✔ You may also be interested in reading:
Top CPS and CPA Affiliate Networks for 2016 Revealed
Top Two-Tier Affiliate Programs for Canadians
How to Start an Affiliate Program for a Canadian Business
10 Hot Product Niches to Sell or Drop Ship Online in Canada
10 Low-Cost Side Businesses you can Start Online from Home
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Melody McKinnon's formal education is in business management, which she enhanced with more than 60 certifications revolving around business, marketing, health, general sciences and writing. In 25 years of working online, she has owned or managed both educational and ecommerce websites. Her book, 7 Recession Proof Online Businesses to Start From Home, is available on Amazon.
Melody has worked with many businesses & brands in a multitude of capacities. She can often be found on CanadiansInternet.com, CanadianFamily.net and AllNaturalPetCare.com, as well as other quality digital publications. Her content has earned reference links from highly-respected websites, magazines and university textbooks.