How to Start Your Online Business

A Step by Step Guide

Affiliate business review 2017-18

I have been in affiliate marketing with an online business for years now, and what I can tell you is it is still growing at a very good pace. While writing my affiliate business review, I have found it has gone from a tool that companies have used to extend their presence online to part of their everyday business. It has become a branch of their business that they could not survive without.

For a brick and mortar business today that has a presence online but doesn’t offer an affiliate program, They are missing the boat and know it. They realize now that they really don’t have any online presence.

Total affiliate business in Millions

In 2014 the total affiliate business
was $2,494,000,000. It is expected to hit $6.2 billion by 2020. This is a Hugh amount of growth.

The internet is continuously growing at a robust pace, and will continue to grow at this pace for the foreseeable future. We are all so connected to the internet constantly. My daughter doesn’t even own a computer, but she is online with her phone constantly.

So companies are pumping more and more of their budget to the online affiliate programs. It has become a necessity for them to keep up with the growing competition from some of the major players.

So what is affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is the process of you placing an “Affiliate link” on your website. When a person clicks on that link and goes to the company and makes a purchase, you earn a commission.

It is important to note that the visitor to your site that clicks on that link, must make the purchase for you to earn a commission. You do not get paid for just having the link on your site.

Customer => clicks your affiliate link => makes a purchase => you make $

There are hundreds of thousands of companies that offer affiliate programs, some directly like Amazon, and some through a separate company that handles it all for a lot of different companies.

Basically that is as simple as it really is. Your website, the content it has and the marketing you do for your site is the more complex part of this business. If your site is not getting ranked and has few visitors, making commissions is going to be very hard.

If you are new to affiliate marketing and need the training and help along the way, there is only one site I can recommend. Wealthy Affiliate has 2 main training courses, one is to get a certification, and the second is called Affiliate Bootcamp.

The certification course is 5 levels deep and each level has many lessons and tasks to complete. The Bootcamp course is all about affiliate marketing and is 7 levels deep with many lessons and tasks, more than the certification.

 Affiliate Marketing in the Year’s Ahead
is brighter than ever

The affiliate marketing business is growing now at a very robust rate. If you think about where we are right now, $4,926,000,000 and its targeted to hit $6.2 billion in the next 3 years, that is over $400 million a year in growth.

All the major players like Amazon, Wallmart, BestBuy, Apple, etc., have built their market share online thanks to affiliates. Affiliate websites are a part of over 95% of all online businesses. You would be hard pressed to do a google search, go to a site and not find an Amazon affiliate link someplace on it.

There are more and more companies offering affiliate programs. They can see the snowball slowly coming down the hill and getting bigger. If they don’t join in, they may not survive.

Take all these companies into account, then add the hundreds of products they each have to promote, and you can see its a Hugh market. There is an estimated 500+ million products available to promote and the list continues to grow.

It is unfortunate for the mom and pop stores and a lot of the brick and motar stores, but people are spending more and more of their money online. Sometimes it is necessary to buy online since we’re all so busy, but at times the price is better online than going to the local store. This trend is forecast to continue at a more rapid pace in the future.

There are a few estimates that say that almost ever purchase made online is through an affiliate. If your Christmas shopping at Wallmart or Amazon, there is most likely an affiliate and their website earning a commission.

When affiliate marketing first started, people were cautious to start an affiliate business because it was said to be a temporary fad. Even businesses were slow to get connected with the idea of affiliates. But this business is here to stay and in a big way. It is one of the greatest opportunities we have within our reach. 

When off line jobs are disappearing and people are searching for a way to help generate some passive income, they are turning to the internet wanting to start a business. The problem is most have no idea of what is involved.

Even though my site is filled with what it takes to start an online business, if I could get one point across to everyone, it would be to understand it is going to take time, patience and determination to build a successful online business.

I cannot stress this point enough. Building a website/online business is NOT easy. It will NOT happen overnight, nor will it be free. 

You can find a free sign up to hosting sites and that’s a good way to learn about what they offer, but eventually you’ll have to pay something.

You can find $.99 cent domain names, but they are offered by hosting sites that are not user friendly or lack a lot of what you will need to build your website. 

What will it take?

Your going to need: a domain name, a website host that offers everything you need, a keyword search platform, images to use, training, a good niche, affiliate programs and more…

When you add all of it up to a monthly expense, you could be paying $40.+ a month. 

Are you ready for it? Do you have a good WHY? Do you have the time, Patience and determination your going to need?

If you want an online business up, running and creating an income 6-12 months from now, you need to start now. Its a timely process but if you stick to it, it can change your life.

90-120 days of building a new website and seeing very little if any activity is NORMAL. You have to keep soldering on and it will start. Once it does and the ball gets rolling, your going to be so glad that you stuck with it.

To build a successful site, you have to
know your customer

Look at how big Amazon is right now.
They have over 488,000,000 products and they don’t have one brick and mortar store. It because they have at their disposal the best marketing. They have hundreds of thousands of online businesses marketing for them and only have to pay if the sale is made.

The amount of their budget that have to spend on advertising is next to nothing. When you consider that a company that big years ago would have to spend millions of dollars advertising, not to mention the cost of the advertising executive’s they would have to pay. We, the affiliate marketers have created this gigantic company.

What is the most important part of affiliate marketing?

Your website, your niche, your content and how you market your site will be the determining factor of your success or failure. You need to build your site the right way, from the name to the finishing touches.

You have to be passionate about the niche you choose. You are going to be writing pages and pages of content, reviews, post and articles all related to the niche you have chosen. Be sure before you start that your not going to get bored or discouraged and quit.

Of all new online business start-up’s, 90% fail.[Read More]

Once you have a focused niche
, you have to create your domain name. Your domain name should relate to what your niche is, but its not going to be as important as your page titles and the content you write.

Learn more about an affiliate business here

I would suggest that you read
through my site if your new to starting an online business. I have an outline on the front page and pages of details for every step you will have to take to create a successful online business.

Know this. I have said it before and I will keep saying it. It is going to take time (90-120days) and patience to get your site ranked and showing some activity.

At the website hosting platform below, You can get everything you need and more for building your new online business. 


Thanks for visiting my site and hope this information was useful for you
All my best to your online success,

PS: Please leave a comment if you have a minute….Thanks



  1. Warren says:

    Doug, this is a great explanation of how affiliate marketing works. Simple and to the point. I love the link on how you can still get a business up and running even if you have no money. Try that with a brick and mortar store.
    Finally, your comment on having to wait 90 – 120 days to start to see results is sooooo true. Well done.

    • Douglas Schmitz says:


      Sounds like you have been working with an online business for a while. You hit the nail on the head with starting an online business for free. You can’t do that with an off line business.

      The affiliate business is strong and getting stronger. All you have to understand is that it takes time and patience to get a site built, get it ranked and producing some activity.

      Thanks for the comment and the compliments. All my best to your success,


  2. Jimmy says:

    Doug, Wow, I didn’t know that it was as big as you say. I took your advise after reading through a lot of your site and became a member at wealthy affiliate.
    I have 2 other sites I have to move but when I figured what I am paying at godaddy and namecheap with all the add ons, I’m going to save money.
    Thanks for all the information you provide,

  3. Pete says:

    Wish I would have started an online business earlier this year so I could get the holiday traffic.
    Didn’t realize that there was that much business going on. Wow.
    Got to thin k about it though, but I did subscribe to your email, so I’ll stay in touch.

    • Pete,
      Don’t kick yourself next year also saying you should have done it now. Got to figure that its going to take 3,4,5 months to get your site up to speed so to say. Start now and give it as much time as you can each day, week. By next spring you will have a good passive income flowing if you follow all the training.
      I will also be there to help with any questions you may have.
      All my best to your success,

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