How To Make Money Blogging With Affiliate Marketing

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I must confess: I thought I knew a thing or two about affiliate marketing and did some here and there. However, it never brought me the results that I often saw with other bloggers. I wondered how that was possible.

Was I doing something wrong? Should I create some sort of strategy? But how was I supposed to do that, if I didn’t want to really hard sell to my readers?

I felt like it was a catch-22: I wanted to generate more sales, but in order to do that, I felt that I had to be more pushy. And that’s something I really didn’t want to do. Still, I couldn’t get myself to cross affiliate marketing of my ‘to do’ list, and I wondered:

Was there any way to benefit from the advantages that affiliate marketing has to offer, without selling my soul?

Eventually, I decided that if I wanted to move forward with my business, I had to invest some time and money into finding out if affiliate marketing would work for me, or not. I did some research and made a shortlist of the courses that appealed to me most and got the best reviews. Eventually, I decided to enroll in the Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing course.

Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing: The Course

Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing is a course created by Michelle Schroeder, from Making Sense of Cents. She is a really successful personal finance blogger, who earns over $100,000 a month with her blog. Her main focus is affiliate marketing.

I’m sure Michelle doesn’t remember this, but she was actually one of my first followers on Blogspot when I started an English blog years ago, in 2012. Back then, she was working a day job and hustling like crazy to pay off her college debt.

I’ve been following her ever since and she really inspired me with her focus, her keen eye for strategy and with just doing stuff. She really dedicated herself to creating an awesome blog and that has paid off!

So when I actually became more serious about affiliate marketing, her course was the first I wanted to check out. Eventually, the raving reviews from other successful bloggers made me decide to go for it.

And I am glad I did!

Learn how Michelle went from $0 to $50,000 in affiliate income - an online courseWhat kind of course is it?

Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing is a really practical course on how to benefit from affiliate marketing. One of the major points Michelle is making, is that affiliate marketing is not pushing some random product to your readers, but that it is about helping your readers. And that means that you have to do a lot more than just slab a few links on your website.

The course consists of 6 modules and a bonus pack. The modules are:

Module 1: What is affiliate marketing

In this section, you’ll learn more about what affiliate marketing is, how the affiliate links work, and why it is such a great way to add value to your blog.

Module 2: How To Find and Apply To Affiliate Programs

If you know what affiliate marketing, you want to get started as soon as possible. In this module, you’ll learn what the best approach is in finding the right programs for you. It even has a very long list of great suggestions for different niches, which I found to be very helpful.

Module 3: Follow the rules

Affiliate marketing is bound to certain (legal) rules and requirements, and it is important to follow those. If you’re not sure about the rules, this is a great module for you. It takes you through them step by step, and even gives more information about for example the Nexus State policies.

Module 4: How To Get Your Readers To Convert

Once you’ve set up everything, you’ll want your readers to convert. This is an expansive module that shows that affiliate marketing is really so much more than just slapping some links on a website. I also found this module to be very helpful in making sure that you use affiliate marketing in a way that it adds value to your blog and readers. That was one of the main things I was struggling with before.

Module 5: Strategies and Ways to Promote Affiliate Links

Of course, once you’ve created the content, you’ll want to make sure that as many people as possible check it out. This module helps you with a number of valuable strategies. And if you’re looking for an inspirational example: it also includes a chapter about the one affiliate product that Michelle earned over $300,000 with! (Hint: it’s NOT the course 😉 )

Module 6: Rinse and repeat

This chapter focuses on strategy for the long term and also includes a list of things that you should NOT do. This module helps you turn your affiliate income into sustainable income.

Find out how Michelle earned 300,000 USD with just one product


The bonuses include a great Pinterest Strategy, things you should do when something goes viral, and some very useful worksheets. The Pinterest Strategy alone is sold for $39, so that are nice savings 🙂

If you don’t want to waste another minute and want to get started right away; head over to the Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Course and register right away! If you want to know more about my experiences with the course, read on!

Is there nothing negative about this course?

I have to admit: I had some reservations about this course. First of all: it isn’t cheap. I got it ‘on sale’, but the regular price is $197! That’s nothing compared to the value of the information in it and what you can earn with that, but that something you only find out when you try it.

So I did check out some cheaper courses and did my own research. However, when I looked at the level of success that really inspired me, I just kept coming back to Michelle. So eventually, I decided to take plunge and try the course.

Another thing I wasn’t sure about was if it would really be enough. You read a description and reviews, but you don’t know the exact contents of the course. Since there’s a ton of information to be found online, I was wondering if it would actually give me something more, something that I couldn’t get for free.

I am a professional freelance writer, and do a lot when it comes to online marketing. So if a course would offer just the basics, I wasn’t sure that it would be worth the money to me.

Related post: How I made $900,000+ as a freelance writer – and you can do it too!

That is why I was glad to find out that Michelle offered a 30-day refund policy. If you finished the course, took action, and are still unsatisfied with the purchase, she will give you a full refund. So if it didn’t work, I would get my money back!

What I earned from taking this course

Well, I’m happy to say that I didn’t have to make use of the 30-day refund policy, because I really loved the course.

In my opinion, the major benefits of the course are:

  • It is very in-depth, so it goes beyond the stuff you can find online
  • It is complete; you can start at any point (whether you’re an experienced affiliate marketer or just getting started) and it will help you create or improve your strategy. It also contains everything you need, so you don’t have to buy any other books or products
  • It is a positive course, that encourages you to help your readers with honest, real advice. I found that really refreshing
  • The bonuses are great! It even includes a Pinterest Strategy by Rosemarie Groner from The Busy Budgeter. She went from 155,000 page views a month to over 587,000 page views a month by implementing this strategy. It even includes all the info on the latest Pinterest affiliate rules! After all, you don’t want to be banned from Pinterest 😉

Another great bonus I wasn’t even aware of before I started, but which has helped me a lot, is the Facebook group that you can get into when you start working on the course. Here, you can ask questions, and you can even promote your own blogs and social media channels. People are really helpful, and positive, which is something I really love!

And, most important of all: it really pays attention to how to build trust and not lose followers. This course teaches you how to only promote the products that you really believe in. To me, this is so important!

I have noticed the difference right away. When I started implementing the tips and tricks in the course, I saw an increase in my page views and on my socials. And I even made my first affiliate sales! And I know that’s just the beginning.

Make money using affiliate marketing without selling out

That sounds nice and all, but is it really worth the $197 pricetag?

I’m Dutch, we’re cheap, so I almost hate to say it, but: yes. This course has helped me to understand affiliate marketing a lot better and it helped me realize how I can use it to help others and to improve my business in the process. That’s win-win!

Since you get lifetime access to the course, you can take whenever you want. I plan on going through it some more, to focus on specific parts at a time. The course contains a lot of advice, which you want to implement to the T.

If you are serious about (getting started with) affiliate marketing, and you are looking for one course that has it all, Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing really is the course for you. BUT: you have to take it seriously. Like so many things, it only works if you do! It helps you with all the steps required, but eventually, you will have to do the work!

Do still have questions about the course? Feel free to leave them in the comments, I’ll be more than happy to answer them or help you in any way possible.

Are you ready to sign up and learn everything there is to know about affiliate marketing? Sign up today and start making money with your blog in no time. You’ll thank yourself later!

FROM 11-14 OCTOBER, you will receive a $28 DISCOUNT if you use this link and enter the coupon code OCTOBER2018CC28OFF during check-out.

Related post: Beginner’s Guide: How To Start A Blog

If you want to know more about blogging and making your life AWESOME, like and follow me on Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram!

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Adine @ Average To Awesome

33-year old Dutchie with a passion for minimalism, doing more with less, and financial independence. And cats. Lots of cranky old cats.

  1. Thank you for providing so much information about the course. I’ve been debating about making the purchase & your post made me feel like I should take the plunge!


  2. I love this. I have been perplexed with how to grow my blog and podcast. I also have been curious about affiliate marketing. I really don’t know what it is, apparently! I tried to repin but it wouldn’t let me. Sorry,!

    1. Those niches can certainly benefit from affiliate marketing! It is all about finding the right programs and partners. Some ideas for health and wellness: reviewing books on related subjects like foods and sports (aff partner like Barnes and Nobles or Amazon), articles on wellness at home (aff links from Amazon to face masks, robes, Rituals products etc), wellness getaways (aff partner such as for overnight stays). And there are also many courses on health related subjects you can partner with. The course also includes a list of best partners for specific niches, such as health and wellness.

      Of course, there may be niches where affiliate marketing is a bit more challenging, such as stuff on frugality for example. However, I think that health and wellness really offers a lot of possibilities!

      In your case specifically; how about cooking books and tools, food trips, etc!

  3. I have taken Michelle’s course too and it was awesome! I’m now working on gradually implementing each piece into my blog strategy. How much have your affiliate sales increased so far? (recognizing that the implementation takes time!)

    1. I implemented a few tiny changes while doing the course, and am working on a more elaborate implementation strategy right now. So far, I’ve seen an increase of 200%, but that sounds more than it is, since I didn’t have much affiliate sales when I started. It’s beginning to pick up a bit more now, and I especially like that I can now be strategic about it. Until now, I’ve been more of the ‘put on a link and see where it leads’-path, so there’s major room for improvement!

  4. I would love to take some courses such as this and at least one other I have seen. 200$ is a lot to me… I’m not very good at spending money to begin with but when I don’t have it and it’s not tangible it’s even harder. Hopefully some day I can get to a point where $200 for a course will be an option. Thanks for the tips tho and I’ll make sure to check it out again when I’m more financially able.

    1. I had the exact same thought, which is why I was glad that it was on sale in the spring (as it is now!). Still a lot of money, but that made it more within reach. Now, I’m glad I did it, but I had been thinking about it for about two years, so it took me some time to get there 😉

  5. I love how candid and honest you were with your review. I’ve been considering signing up for this course and your review is one of the best I’ve read so far.

    1. Yes, sure! If you have affiliates who promote your book(s), and you pay them per conversion, they will do the work for you, and you only pay for results, which often isn’t the case with ‘regular’ advertising. If you have a network of affiliates, chances are that they will reach more people than you if you were to do it by yourself!

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