A Beginners Guide on How to do Affiliate Marketing in India

Updated on: Mar 19, 2024

Today many people mint money just by creating a website and using affiliate marketing practices

Questions such as “How to do Affiliate Marketing?”, “How can one make a profit without actually creating and promoting their own products and services?” might have developed a feeling of curiosity to understand how this works.

Still not fully convinced?

Let me explain it with the help of an example. Let’s assume that there is a character named “A” who loves to try and explore new products every now and then. Now after trying so many products, A has decided to create a website to share his experience with the rest of the world. 

Here he decides to put the link of the product he enjoys and encourage other people to buy it and derive benefits from it. Now there is another character named “B” who comes to A’s website, likes his product mentions and actually makes a purchase by clicking on the provided link.

The minute B buys a product from the link given on A’s website, A receives a commission or a part of the profit for recommending a company’s products and services. 

Interesting right? This is what affiliate marketing is all about.

In this blog, I have made an attempt to cover everything you need to learn about affiliate marketing and how to do affiliate marketing so that you can easily generate another source of income for yourself. 

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What is affiliate marketing?  

Affiliate marketing involves performing promotional activities for another company’s products or services.  Whenever a customer purchases a product through your affiliate link, you receive a part of the profit through the sales made. 

This type of marketing is a great way for the company to boost their revenue and turns out to be a win-win situation for both the company and the affiliate marketer. 

According to bigcommerce the amount of money spent on affiliate marketing has increased to $8.2 billion in 2022 from $5.4 billion in 2017. 

Many people love to involve digital marketing in their affiliate marketing practices and hence enrol for various PG in digital marketing programs. This helps them to formulate a more effective strategy to promote a company’s products and services.

Now that you have an understanding of the concept of affiliate marketing, let us understand why should one become an affiliate marketer.


Why should one become an affiliate marketer?

Here are some of the reasons suggesting why one should become an affiliate marketer:

1. Another source of Income

Along with your regular job income, affiliate marketing will help you earn money even when you are not working. By investing a reasonable amount of time and money in your campaign you will be able to earn profits of commission over a period of time. 

Many students who complete their MBA in digital marketing, combine this knowledge with affiliate marketing to learn extra income. Read this blog on “MBA Salary in India” and learn how much an MBA how much a person can earn after completing their MBA.

2. Work Anywhere

Affiliate marketing does not require you to work from the office which means that you can work from anywhere in the world at your time of convenience. This flexibility ensures that you will be earning money through your campaigns in the comfort of your home.

3. Cost-effective

Setting up an online business and creating a product from scratch will require a large amount of investment to be made as compared to affiliate marketing which can be resumed immediately. Even the initial setting up cost will not be involved making it very reasonable for an affiliate marketing to start their operations.

4. Commission based on performance

In affiliate marketing you can earn money based on the number of sales you make, so investing more time in affiliate marketing can be more rewarding compared to a regular paying job where you will receive the same salary irrespective of the amount of money you receive.

Many people also pursue digital marketing from the best colleges offering masters in digital marketing so that they can combine these skills in their affiliate marketing campaigns and boost their income 10 times. 

How does affiliate marketing work? or How to do affiliate marketing?

After you start affiliate marketing say for promoting Amazon’s products and services, you will receive a unique link or code that is the tracking ID so that it helps to company to track if you have referred and sent customers to them.

Potential customers who click on your provided link get a file called cookie that has the expiry date for the link so that an affiliate marketer can receive their commission even after one makes a delay in their purchase. 

Let me explain this with the help of an example:

  • A person sees your post on “Trending casual wear”
  • He clicks on the post (unique link) and lands on the shopper’s website
  • After going through the pattern size and other features the person decides to check more websites before making a final purchase decision
  • After an immense research, the person decides to purchase the product recommended in your post
  • Now that person goes on the website and makes a purchase

Because the affiliate cookie is present in the person’s device the company is able to track the original source of its customer’s journey to its website. Because of this cookie feature, the affiliate marketer receives the commission for the sales made.

Many people also prefer to learn the digital marketing basics so that they can use this knowledge to boost their affiliate marketing practices.


What are the types of affiliate marketing?

Most of the time people are not aware if the product is actually used by the affiliate marketer or not. Have they genuinely tried the product or is it just a promotional activity always stays the question. 

Most of the time the usage factor does not matter, but in some cases such as hair colour, the audience will hesitate to make a purchase decision if the affiliate marketer has not tested the product and shared a positive review.

In 2009, Pat Flynn a renowned affiliate marketer divided affiliate marketing into 3 different categories – unattached, related, and involved. Now let us dive into each category and understand how each type of affiliate marketing functions.


In an unattached affiliate marketing model, the affiliate marketer has no authority over the product or service being promoted and there is no connection between the marketer and the end consumer. They adopt a variety of pay-per-click marketing campaigns with their affiliate link with the hope that one will click on the link and buy the recommended product.

The reason why people resort to this type of affiliate marketing is because they don’t have the time to build a reputation and relationship with their customers. They may not have the time to commit to writing a blog or creating a website. People generally enter this field who want to generate income without actually investing in building a relationship with their customers.


In a related affiliate marketing model, the affiliate marketer has some kind of online presence maybe through social media, podcasts, videos, etc. Here the affiliates have an influence in the niche and hence have some authority.

For instance, if you are promoting sportswear that has not been used by you but has an audience that you have created through your social media or a blog. In such cases you become a related affiliate marketing train. 

Such a form of affiliate marketing helps to bring traffic as the affiliate marketer has an audience. However, recommending an untested product can work to your disadvantage if they don’t turn out to like it.


In an involved affiliate marketing model, the affiliate marketer has used the product himself, believes in the product and encourages their audience to buy the same. Here instead of relying on a PPC campaign an affiliate marketer can encourage the purchase of their products by sharing their personal experiences.

Because the affiliate has tried the product, he has the authority to make any claims regarding the product. Customers will trust such recommendations as they have been tested by the affiliate. Hence creating a relationship with your audience may be time-consuming but this will help you generate more income compared to any other type of affiliate marketing.


How much can I make as a new affiliate marketer?

The amount of money that an affiliate can make varies among affiliates. A well-established affiliate marketer will earn much more compared to one who has just entered this field. It will also depend on other factors, such as how much traffic can you bring to your website, and the trust and relationship you build with your customers. Such factors play a very pivotal role in determining the earning potential of an affiliate marketer.

The commission earned by an affiliate also varies depending on the company one decides to work for. If you apply for an Amazon Associate Program, you can earn a commission anywhere between 1% to 20% on sales generated. Other companies such as Thrive Market offer a commission between $5 to $20 every time a sale is made, and ButcherBox where an affiliate marketer can earn a commission of $20 per sale made. 

Additionally, there are other types of affiliate programs where an affiliate marketer can earn a high commission upto 30% on every sale made.


Q1. What are the 3 main types of affiliates?

Ans: The three primary types of affiliates are – unattached, related, and involved. Each of them has their own advantages and disadvantages. However, adopting an involved affiliate model is the ideal type as it ensures that one can build a good relationship with the audience to reap benefits in the long run.

Q2. Can I start affiliate marketing for free?

Ans: Yes, of course, you do not necessarily need to invest any money in affiliate marketing. As an affiliate marketer, you can create a page on various social media platforms and promote a company’s products and services for free. Similarly by researching various free tools, one can easily perform promotional activities without actually making an investment.

Q3. How do I start affiliate marketing with 0 followers?

Ans: One can start affiliate marketing by writing blogs and articles about a product or service. You will have to spend a lot of time initially to bring an audience to your page or website, build a relationship with them and eventually encourage them to purchase the product from your affiliated link.

Q4. Where can I post my affiliate links for free?

Ans: One can start affiliate marketing for free by using various platforms like emails, YouTube, forums, social media, their own website and much more. The above platforms will allow you to post for free as well as help you create another source of revenue whenever a purchase is made through your link.

Q5. Are affiliate links legal?

Ans: An affiliate marketer performs promotional activities on behalf of the company to promote its goods and services. For every sale, they receive a commission or a fixed income. To answer your question “Is affiliate marketing legal?” – Yes this type of marketing is 100% legal.



And it’s a wrap! I hope this blog has provided you with all the information you need to begin affiliate marketing. Remember that spending time to craft a content marketing strategy will help you reap benefits in the future. 

If you have knowledge of digital marketing then you can take your campaign to the next level which will help you to bring more traffic to your website and eventually increase conversion rate.

If you are interested in investing in a digital marketing course then you should check this blog on “IIDE PG Program Overview” and learn how this course can help you maximize your earnings.

If you still have any queries regarding the course, then I strongly recommend you schedule an appointment with one of our senior academic counsellors. They will cater to all your concerns as well as help you avail a scholarship upto INR 1 lakh.

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Karan Shah

Founder and CEO at IIDE

He is a passionate public speaker and teacher for over 10 years. He has trained over 60,000+ students and 25+ corporates in Digital Marketing via online and offline channels. He is a Harvard alumnus specialising in E-commerce......[Read full bio]


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