Top Common Myths About Affiliate Marketing Debunked

Jul 7, 2024
Top Common Myths About Affiliate Marketing Debunked

So, you’re new to affiliate marketing? Were you drawn in by promises of quick money, infinite reach, and endless opportunities? Or maybe you’ve been put off by myths about affiliate marketing? Well, I’m here to debunk all the affiliate marketing myths and tell you the truth... The truth about affiliate marketing, arbitrage traffic, and working with such content. But prepare, some affiliate myths are actually true!

Today, you’ll find answers to questions like these:

  1. Are affiliate marketers the richest people in the world?
  2. Why do real affiliate marketers look different from their Instagram and social media profiles?
  3. Who can really profit in the affiliate market industry?
  4. Why isn't affiliate marketing a scam, even though it sometimes involves gray areas?
  5. Who are those who believe in the so-called affiliate marketing Armageddon?
  6. Is there anyone who trusts affiliate marketers worldwide?

And learn about other minor and major myths about affiliate marketing.

Overview Of all Common Myths about Affiliate marketing

Falling into the world of affiliate marketing can be exciting, but it's filled with myths that can confuse newcomers and even seasoned marketers. Let's clear the air by addressing the top 7 myths about affiliate marketing, showing you what's really going on.

Here are the myths and a brief explanation of each:

  1. Quick and Easy Money — It's not just about fast cash; like any sales job, it requires skills and effort.
  2. Only for Big Companies — Not true; anyone can succeed, including small businesses and individuals.
  3. Only "Grey" Niches Work — Effective in many areas, not just the shady ones; it's about smart marketing, not just the niche.
  4. It’s a Scam — No way; it's a legitimate strategy used by reputable companies worldwide.
  5. Need a Large Following — Not necessary; smaller, engaged audiences can often lead to better results.
  6. Affiliate Marketing is Dying — Far from the truth; it's growing and evolving with new strategies and technologies.
  7. Consumers Don’t Trust Affiliates — Not always; transparency and honesty can build trust and drive sales.

Each of these myths shows a misunderstanding of how successful affiliate marketing really works. By busting these myths, we hope to give you a clearer path to success in affiliate marketing.

Myth 1: Affiliate Marketing is Quick and Easy Money


Here's the truth about affiliate marketing: there's big money. But the money here is just like any other sales job. If you can sell, you'll be rich—it just requires skill and effort. Successful affiliate marketers are those who can effectively promote products or services.

Despite a common misconception, all that big money in affiliate marketing is mostly working capital. You handle large sums, but only a small percentage becomes actual profit.

Affiliate marketing is safe if done right, and it involves creating good content and promoting it well. Despite what affiliate marketing myths say, quick cash comes only after building a successful business with years of hard work.

Myth 2: Only Big Companies Succeed in Affiliate Marketing

Another one of the widespread myths about affiliate marketing is that only big companies can make money here. Instead of trying to assure you that everyone can succeed, let's look at the real numbers about affiliate marketers:




40% of Sales

Small businesses contribute to about 40% of all affiliate marketing sales

Awin Report

50% of Revenue

For many small businesses, affiliate marketing makes up to 50% of their total revenue


So, it turns out almost anyone can become an affiliate marketer and achieve success!

Myth 3: Affiliate Marketing Only Shows Results in “Gray” Niches

Okay, this common misconception is quite different from the others. It stems from the initial exposure to affiliate marketing, where you often encounter areas like casinos, dating, adult content, or arbitrage of cheap Chinese products.

This doesn't mean that affiliate marketing is designed only to sell cheap products. The truth about affiliate marketing is slightly different: it is such an effective method to sell products that even the gray niches—with their questionable offers and hidden profits—can generate significant revenue.

On the other hand, these ill-famed yet successful affiliate niches are saturated with competitors. You can learn many useful techniques and methods from them, which are helpful when marketing products in legitimate, mainstream markets. Despite the prejudices against gray niches, we can't deny their effectiveness.

Of course, in white niches, there are much more revenues and profits, but to succeed in white affiliate digital marketing, you need good skills, which helps you to promote products effectively!

Affiliate marketing is safe if managed properly. Understanding the truth about affiliate marketing can help dispel common myths. By creating quality content and choosing niches wisely, you can achieve success and earn substantial commissions in this popular industry.

Myth 4: Affiliate Marketing is a Scam


This one is often linked to other myths about affiliate marketing. Many people associate email marketing strategies with a scam product or service. So it’s important to remember, especially when you start an affiliate marketing career, that it isn’t a scam. It’s just a method that helps big companies deliver their products or services in the most effective way.




$8.2 Billion

The affiliate marketing industry is expected to be worth $8.2 billion in the U.S. by 2022.

Rakuten Marketing

81% of Brands

About 81% of brands use affiliate marketing programs to complement their marketing strategies.

Rakuten Marketing

16% of Ecommerce

Affiliate marketing accounts for 16% of all online orders, showing its effectiveness in generating leads and sales that encourage people to buy popular products.

Business Insider

Myth 5: You Need a Large Following to Succeed

To be honest, those who believe this myth don't even understand how affiliate marketing works. The truth is ridiculously simple! You don't even need many followers. Having a great marketing team is much more important. All you need is to place your affiliate link in the right places.

If you've read our article about successful affiliate marketing on Telegram, you know that having a Telegram channel with many followers can be more challenging than beneficial. It’s much better to direct your resources to analyzing popular niches, finding inexpensive but effective influencers, and making money online with the right distribution methods!

Another scenario is when you're a brand manager and need to promote your product or service only on your own platforms. In this case, yes, you need to use social media, create connections with your audience, and create a successful brand image.

Alternatively, you could create an effective sales funnel, distribute your affiliate link, and start earning big bucks faster!




1,000-100,000 Followers

Micro-influencers, with followers ranging from 1,000 to 100,000, often have higher engagement rates than larger influencers, debunking common misconceptions about affiliate marketing.

Influencer Marketing Hub

65% Engagement

65% of brands report better engagement rates with micro-influencers compared to larger influencers, showing that affiliate marketing requires quality over quantity in audience engagement.

Influencer Marketing Hub

Higher Conversion Rates

Creating targeted content for niche audiences can result in higher conversion rates, even with a smaller following, proving that you don’t need a large following to succeed in affiliate marketing efforts.

Content Marketing Institute

Myth 6: Affiliate Marketing is Dying


And this one is even less true than the previous five myths about affiliate marketing… Look, these myths surrounding affiliate marketing are shared only by people who can’t provide value to marketing campaigns. The truth is that you can’t get rich quickly anymore. And if you want to start an affiliate career as a "gray marketer," you'll find yourself competing in an oversaturated market. However, when you stop believing the previous five myths about affiliate marketing and begin promoting legitimate affiliate products, you'll discover that there is less competition than you might expect!

You have no idea how successful an affiliate marketing business is now. Affiliate marketing is not dying. It is growing and changing, with many brands and marketers using it successfully. The truth behind the myth shows a thriving industry, worth $8.2 Million.

Myth 7: Consumers Don’t Trust Affiliate Marketers

Like many other popular affiliate marketing myths, this one doesn't align with the facts. Its roots lie in the gray niches. While successful affiliate marketers use affiliate links correctly and become richer, those seeking get-rich-quick schemes often fall into marketing scams.

In reality, consumers don't focus on the affiliate marketers themselves. Their trust or distrust is directed toward the product or service. Effective brand management can help build trust, sure. But if you put all your effort during your affiliate marketing journey into a scam product, you will ultimately fail and lose to other affiliate marketers who master gray schemes.

Conclusion about all those affiliate marketing myths

Affiliate marketing is often misunderstood due to the many myths surrounding it. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not a get-rich-quick scheme and requires skills and effort similar to any other sales job. While gray niches are popular, affiliate marketing is effective across different areas when done correctly. It is a legitimate business strategy, used by 81% of brands, and far from dying. Transparency and honesty can build consumer trust, showing that the right approach matters more than the size of the audience. So, after we've busted all the myths about partner marketing, you might be interested in checking out more of our Cpamatica resources, including articles on how to use ChatGPT and AI to optimize your campaigns !

So, the final question: is affiliate marketing safe? The short answer is: it depends. It depends on whether you become an affiliate marketer for gray niches or for white niches. When you decide this for yourself, you're also determining if affiliate marketing is a legitimate way to promote a product. It's just a part of a global marketing strategy, not a cure-all solution.

Nikita Brezhenko
Affiliate Manager
Hey there, I'm Nikita! My goal? To help you skyrocket your profits in the affiliate world. Let's dive into what works, boost those earnings per click, and enjoy the journey to success together.

Recommended Articles