Tag Archives: SEO

SEO Affiliate Marketing: The Definitive Guide

This post explains what is SEO, affiliate marketing, how to do affiliate marketing with SEO tactics both for merchants and affiliates, what are the best SEO software affiliate programs to earn commissions. Hope this guide can help merchants to recruit more high-quality content affiliates and publishers to succeed in affiliate marketing by taking advantage of SEO or other marketing channels.

What is SEO Affiliate Marketing?

To answer the question, we need to know what is SEO and what is affiliate marketing.

What is Affiliate Marketing?

According to the latest IAB affiliate marketing handbook, affiliate marketing is defined as a performance-based channel in which an online advertiser pays a commission to an affiliate for any sales or
actions that were generated from their referrals.

There are three major roles: affiliates, advertisers, and affiliate networks.

what is affiliate marketing
Source: Google Image

Affiliates also called publishers or partners, are people or companies that will promote a product or service to their audience.

Advertisers, also known as merchants, retailers, or brands are the online companies that have this product or service to sell. 

Affiliate networks are the companies that help connect affiliates and advertisers and provide tracking and reporting services such as Awin, CJ, Rakuten (former LinkShare), Pepperjam, ShareASale., and Webgains.

( You may hear affiliate tracking software, that is for an in-house affiliate program, that is to say, the merchants use the tracking software such as Afftis, HasOffers by Tune. Radius by Impact, Partnerize to run their partner programs with full control. And affiliates usually use Voluum for tracking.)

How Affiliate Marketing Works?

How affiliate marketing works
Source: IAB Affiliate Marketing Handbook 2020
  • Affiliates promote a brand’s product or service on the website.
  • When a consumer clicks an affiliate link and then is taken to the advertiser’s website and finally makes a purchase.
  • The transaction was tracked through the affiliate network.
  • The affiliate is credited with the commission for the sales he/she drives for the advertiser.

Learn more about affiliate marketing.

What is SEO?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. It is the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic by optimizing websites so that they rank well through organic/natural search engine results.

Google is the most popular search engine, others include Baidu (China), Yandex (Russia), Bing, Yahoo, DuckDuckGo…

In SEO, not all search engines are equal. Accord to StatCounter data of search engine market share, Google is 91.75%, Bing is 2.75%, Yahoo is 1.7%. So make sure to put more emphasis on Google.

search engine market share
Source: Statcounter

How Search Engine Works?

Search engines have three primary functions: crawl, index, and rank.

Google explains how it discovers, crawls, and serves web on Google search console help.

  1. Crawl: Scour the Internet for content, web crawlers(commonly known as search engine bots or spiders) look at data such as URLs, sitemaps, and code to discover the types of content being displayed
  2. Index: Store and organize the content found during the crawling process.
  3. Rank: Display the most relevant content that will best answer a searcher’s query

Here’s what Google says on “How search works” although it does not tell much about its algorithm.

Google ranking systems are designed to do just that: sort through hundreds of billions of webpages in our Search index to find the most relevant, useful results in a fraction of a second, and present them in a way that helps you find what you’re looking for.

To give you the most useful information, Search algorithms look at many factors, including the words of your query, relevance and usability of pages, expertise of sources and your location and settings. The weight applied to each factor varies depending on the nature of your query.

In simple terms, SEO works by demonstrating to search engines that your content is the best fit for the search query. After all, all search engines are aimed to show the best, most relevant results to their users.

Generally, SEO includes on-page SEO, off-page SEO, and technical SEO. Because people spend more time on their mobile phones, mobile SEO is more and more important. Some business owners also use Google My Business to increase exposure, which is local SEO.

SEO Guide

SEO is just one part of digital marketing, it needs to be combined with other channels like social marketing, content marketing, and PPC/SEM, and so on.

Learn more about SEO fundamental

SEO and Affiliate  Marketing

So we come back to the original question: what is SEO affiliate marketing.

If you are a merchant, what you worry about is whether affiliate marketing harms your SEO efforts.

If you are an affiliate, what you concern about is how to use SEO to drive more traffic.

Do Affiliate Links Help SEO?

For the most part, affiliate links do not directly help or hurt your SEO.

Affiliate links through major program networks do not get followed from the search engine.and  will not pass any link equity to the receiving page. Even for the affiliate links which do not have this nofollow tag, full Affiliate network link URLs pass through a 302 redirect and shorthanded links pass through a 307 redirect. These are temporary redirects that are not followed by search engines and pass zero SEO value. Learn more from Awin Wiki.

Just think about how many merchants own the affiliate program, so do not worry about the affiliate link issue.

How  Affiliates do SEO?

First of all, always follow Google guidelines on the affiliate program to create websites with original content that adds value for users.

John from Google suggests that rel=sponsored be used for affiliate links.


The differences between Google’s Nofollow, sponsored, and UGC link attributes are clear from the Moz chart. Learn more about the Nofollow link attribute change at Search Engine Roundtable.

Keep in mind these rules, you can start your blog to do affiliate marketing. The major process for SEO affiliate is:

  • Find a niche product that you are interested in or familiar with and can be profitable
  • Do competitor research and make a content plan
  • Creat quality content based on keyword research
  • Do on-page SEO include title, tag, description, image alt and so on
  • Promote your content on social networks like Youtube, Reddit, and Twitter…You can also try paid ads and email marketing.
  • Build your links and win more backlinks for your websites. Do Not Buy links.
  • Optimize, Test, Optimize, and Test… and Scale.

Best SEO Tool Affiliate Program

If you are an affiliate and have a basic knowledge of affiliate marketing, SEO, and digital marketing, it is a good choice to promote SEO affiliate programs or other SaaS affiliate programs. The advantage is that you use them and you know them.

SEMrush affiliate program seems popular while ahrefs and Moz, unfortunately closed their affiliate program.

Besides the SEO tools, other types of marketing SaaS are also worthy of consideration such as BigCommerce for e-commerce website building, Aweber for email marketing, and LeadPage / InstaPage for landing page design.

Affiliate Program Type Commission
SEMrush SEO/SEM up to 40%
Brightlocal SEO 15%
Mangools( kwfinder) SEO 30%
Serpstat SEO up to 30%
BigCommerce e-commerce up to $1,500
AWeber email marketing 30%
LeadPages landing page up to 50%
InstaPage landing page up to 50%
Sporutsocial social marketing $50
Hubspot CRM up to $1000
Crazyegg analytics no
Screamingfrog SEO no
majestic SEO no
Buzzsumo content marketing no
Similarweb analytics no but parter program
ahrefs SEO closed
Moz SEO closed


Hope this guide can help walk you through SEO affiliate marketing. No matter you are an advertiser eager to boost your affiliate program or you are an affiliate desiring for SEO traffic. Digital marketing is like an umbrella, it is wise to take all the channels-SEO, SEM, social, content, affiliate, EDM programmatic, mobile into consideration.

SEO All In One

SEO Guide

1.SEO Books

  • The Art of SEO: Mastering Search Engine Optimization
  • Search Engine Optimization All-In-One For Dummies
  • Search Engine Optimization: An Hour a Day
  • SEO 2020 Learn Search Engine Optimization With Smart Internet Marketing Strategy
  • SEJ| SEO ebooks

2.SEO Guide

3.How to Become an SEO Expert

Free Courses

4.SEO Tools

SEO Analytics Tool

Keyword Research Tool

Backlink Tool

Crawling/Indexing Tool

Content Tool


Local SEO Tool

Mobile SEO Tool

Technical SEO Tool

SEO Toolbar

5.SEO Step by Step

SEO Ranking Factors

Google Algorithm Update

On-Page SEO

Backlink| On-Page SEO

Link Building

Local SEO Directories

  • https://www.brightlocal.com/resources/top-local-citation-sites-by-country/
  • http://www.localvisibilitysystem.com/2014/08/05/industry-specific-local-review-sites-the-definitive-list/
  • https://whitespark.ca/local-citation-finder/
  • https://www.searchenginejournal.com/web-directories-list/287799/#close
  • https://www.searchenginejournal.com/niche-review-sites/201486/
  • https://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/10322/the-ultimate-list-50-local-business-directories.aspx
  • https://www.localseoguide.com/best-local-business-directories-seo/
  • https://www.directorybug.com/top100
  • https://www.searchenginejournal.com/local-seo/listings-management-local-seo-tools/

International SEO

SEO Checklist

6. SEO News

7.SEO Blogs

8. SEO Conferences

• Mozcon
• Searchlove
• SMX Munich
• SEMpdx Engage
• Brighton SEO

Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 49

Bob’s Weekly Reading Picks

2019.12.15 volume 49


  1. TikTok – Everything You Need To Know
  2. Marketing Trends for 2020
  3. Spectator to Partner: Turn Your Clients into SEO Allies
  4. 10 Important 2020 SEO Trends You Need to Know
  5. The top 25 Econsultancy blog posts of 2019
  6. Aisle and hopper: Tesco considers selling its Asian supermarkets
  7. Silicon Valley Is Listening to Your Most Intimate Momentstre Continue reading Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 49

Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 48

Bob’s Weekly Reading Picks

2019.12.8 volume 48


  1. PerformanceIN 2020 Predictions: Industry Comments (Part 1)
  2. Black Friday and Cyber Monday Online Retail Stats
  3. The Local Algorithm: Relevance, Proximity, and Prominence
  4. Neuromarketing: What You Need to Know
  5. A Day in the Life of a Digital Marketer
  6. The future of Google: Alphabet turns a Page and a Brin
  7. Amazon Turns to Cloud Hardware to Outrun Microsoft and Google Continue reading Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 48

Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 47

Bob’s Weekly Reading Picks

2019.12.1 volume 47


  1. The Value of Coupon and Cashback Affiliates
  2. Retailer thoughts on Black Friday 2019
  3. What is Amazon Influencer Marketing, and Why is it Important?
  4. All About Fraggles (Fragment + Handle) – Whiteboard Friday
  5. The Practical Guide to Finding Anyone’s Email Address
  6. 中国互联网的2020:巨头之战与大交易、出海的时代
  7. The Best Books of 2019 Continue reading Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 47

Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 46

Bob’s Weekly Reading Picks

2019.11.24 volume 46


  1. Affiliate Program Marketing Guide: How to Spread the Word About Yours
  2. An inside view on Singles’ Day 2019 and China’s e-commerce landscape
  3. The Definitive Guide To SEO In 2020
  4. Better Content Through NLP (Natural Language Processing) – Whiteboard Friday
  5. Brand bidding & PPC optimization: Reducing your competition
  6. Big Tech takes aim at the low-profit retail-banking industry
  7. Google Wants to Do Business With the Military—Many of Its Employees Don’t
    Continue reading Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 46

Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 45

Bob’s Weekly Reading Picks

2019.11.17 volume 45


  1. The Content Distribution Playbook – Whiteboard Friday
  2. Google in 2020: From Everyone’s Search Engine to Everyone’s Competitor
  3. O2O Strategies for Holiday Success
  4. Black Friday: The Ultimate Ecommerce Guide
  5. The future of entertainment
  6. Internet shopping frenzies: One for the money
  7. BrandZ Top US Brands 2020 Continue reading Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 45

Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 44

Bob’s Weekly Reading Picks

2019.11.10 volume 44


  1. 20 Common and Dangerous Affiliate Program Mistakes 
  2. How affiliate marketing can revitalize your business
  3. Essential Affiliate Program KPIs to Review Before the New Year
  4. Differences Between Domain, Email Hosting, and Web hosting
  5. 28 Best WordPress Plugins in 2019
  6. What Is BERT? – Whiteboard Friday
  7. LOCAL SEO: The Definitive Guide Continue reading Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 44

Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 43

Bob’s Weekly Reading Picks

2019.11.3 volume 43


1.How Can Affiliates Be Successful in 2020
2.Machine Learning 101
3.International SEO
4.Understanding searches better than ever before
5.The Ultimate Guide to Integrated Marketing
6.American business schools are reinventing the MBA
7.50 Companies to Watch in 2020 Continue reading Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 43