Just had to do a complete review of this.
There are a ton of other reviews making all sorts of weird claims about this.
Scam, MLM, Pyramid scheme, so far out of date as to be useless and more.
I’ve completed most of the training, and watched many of the training videos in Wealthy Affiliate.
One of the things I have in the back of my mind when looking at any program is, are they scamming, is it value for money, or is it just a complete waste of time.
Here is what you can expect to find out about wealthy affiliate.
- How it compares with other similar programs
- Is it out of date information
- Information on its latest updates.
- What it offers
- What the complaints are
- Should you buy into it.
- 1 Is Wealthy Affiliate worth the Money?
- 2 How much does Wealthy Affiliate cost.
- 3 Are Wealthy Affiliate students getting results?
- 4 What is the importance of affiliate marketing?
- 5 What is the structure of Wealthy Affiliate training?
- 6 Who is Wealthy Affiliate for?
- 7 Who owns Wealthy Affiliate?
- 8 Wealthy affiliate complaints…?
- 9 Is Wealthy Affiliate worth it.?
- 10 Conclusion: – Wealthy Affiliate Has Both Pros and Cons
Is Wealthy Affiliate worth the Money?
This wealthy affiliate review has 25 things to know before buying in to it. Lets start with a cost comparison to similar programs.
How much does Wealthy Affiliate cost.
Here is a comparison with some other popular platforms.
|Program||Level of Expertise||Cost|
|Udemy||Beginner to some experience||$14.99 – $100.00.|
|Solo Build It||Beginner to advanced. Taught as a formal E-Business course at Colleges and Universities such as Arizona State.||$329.99 P/Yr. or $34.99 mth.|
|Affilorama||Beginner to advanced. A 100 free lessons for beginners, then various upsells.||$0 -$997+.|
|Wealthy Affiliate||Beginner to advanced. 7 day free trial of everything. Then a choice to leave, stay a free member or go Premium or Premium Plus.||$0- Free, or ($19.00 for the 1st month), then $49.00 mth./ $359.00 yr.for Premium or $99.00 mth./ $999.00 yr. for Premium Plus.|
Previously wealthy affiliate only had two membership levels. Free and Premium.
In the last half of 2021 they have added a further (more expensive), level called Premium Plus.
Not very original, I know.
I know there are other platforms besides Affiliroma and Solo Build It, that offer affiliate courses, with prices in the ballpark of $500 – $1000. yr. and / or a one off payment.
But many of those tend to be niche specific. That is they just focus on one aspect of generating sales. Clickbank is a good example.
I am trying to match oranges with oranges here.
Platforms like Wealthy Affiliate, Solo build it and Affilorama, are broad based, have been around for about 20 years, and appeal to those wanting to get a good understanding (and make money), of how it all operates in the online world.
By clicking on the links I included in the table, you will be able to see they are sort of similar, but the differences are depth of content, and probably there is a lot more “hand holding” with WA.
The number of videos, and extra tips from the WA community is probably the major difference between them.
In most cases it will be a toss up between Solo Build it, and Wealthy Affiliate, sometimes Solo Build It wins, because of its lower price.
But Price is not always a factor. It is what value you get for your money (or perceived value), which is where WA often wins out.
The other links in the table will take you to the Udemy course, and the WA information page.
Are Wealthy Affiliate students getting results?
Like all of these platforms, results are dependent on peoples efforts.
If you do nothing then that is exactly what will happen.
In other reviews of WA I have seen, the authors have been suggesting hardly anyone makes any money within the WA platform.
Along with the usual name calling. “Scam, nobody makes any money” (more on this below, it gets interesting).
All the bad reviews are a bit hard to believe, with nearly a million active members.
WA has been going for nearly 20 years, and is possibly the most popular affiliate program in the world!
So either there are a lot of suckers out there, or there are people making money.
I can’t vouch for everyone, but a couple of examples can be seen Here.
The dude opposite is sending pics from Costa Rica (he normally lives up near the North Pole).
Then there is the guy who did well with home brew kits, the woman selling E-books on facebook, the guy promoting drones, the women doing online yoga classes etc.
There are all sorts of ways and means people have made money.
Pets, babies, sport, health and wellness, the stock market, religion, sex, you name it, if there is enough people in a niche then it can be profitable.
Either as affiliates, or running a website to compliment their existing brick and mortar store, or work from home enterprise. Or even building websites for brick and mortar business.
Funny thing about some of them… they are inflation proof, do you think inflation bothers pet owners?
Nope, they still buy stuff for their pet(s), before they buy stuff for themselves.
With an active membership of around a 1million, you would expect a certain amount of ingenuity.
One of the best things I found is their community is always supportive, always ready to help.
Ask a question expect an answer in a couple of minutes or so.
Those who are making the cash will give out advice to others, and post their methods on the site.
Even recently, Kyle (one of the owners), entered a discussion and posted tips showing his methods for finding keywords, selecting keywords, using their keyword search tool Jaaxy, to counter an argument from a member who disagreed and said we don’t need keyword “tools”.
And was backing up his arguments by showing his method.
The membership is diverse and knowledgeable. Just another family discussion. ?
So regardless of what reviews you have read, and regardless of how many “screenshots of comparative success in the rankings” you have seen, there are people in WA making money.
I have a couple Here. Plus some below.
What is the importance of affiliate marketing?
- It is important because companies get their products in front of many more people, outside of the normal brick and mortar concept, and 30 second T.V. ads.
- A good review done by an affiliate, will provide more information about a product for potential buyers to make an informed decision.
- Increases exposure with reduced advertising costs
- Provides a means for online entrepreneurs to earn income without stocking any product.
Affiliate Marketing is performance based marketing.
Those affiliates who get good at it, earn good money by having an understanding of search engine optimization, use of keywords, are able to structure informational articles, focusing on a particular area of expertise, or existing business, or developing an idea.
There are literally millions of businesses that rely on affiliates for part of their income.
With more people having access to the internet every day, the pool of people wanting to find information or solutions to problems is not going to slow down anytime soon.
What is the structure of Wealthy Affiliate training?
In a nut shell the “core training” comprises 2 parts, which are then subdivided into learning modules. There are also “Free lessons” on…
- Choosing your direction
- Building your “website”
- Activating plugins
- Keyword research
- Creating content
The free for a week lets you dive in and have a look around. Check out what they are talking about in the blog posts. It could be an eye opener for you.
How much of it you take advantage of is up to you.
Essentially you can go from not having a clue, to knowing enough to get started building a business.
Your probably won’t learn enough in that week to make any money online (although there is some good stuff in there), which is why you have to go Premium (or if your really committed Premium Plus), and get the full breakdown of earning as an affiliate marketer which includes…
- Generating free traffic: Getting your own domain, keyword-rich content, breaking down traffic, using visuals, and lessons on productivity.
- Making money: The basics of affiliate marketing, finding affiliate programs, how to leverage product reviews, how to insert Amazon links, how to capture data.
- Social media: Setting up accounts, engaging with your audience, how to use each platform, posting within WA, and branding.
- Content creation: Overview of the industry, how to get indexed, improving readability, writing within a structure, and goal setting.
All the bases above are covered with the following fairly intensive training.
- Certification core training. Level 1-5 (50 modules)
- Bootcamp core training. level 1-7 (70 modules).
- 1,000 plus training modules, plus videos, made by members.
- All levels core training
- 52+ expert video classes per year.
- Research tools for keywords.
Kyle also does videos, and has done most of the training videos in the default training section.
Here is one he did on “Researching your way to endless opportunity”
Then there is “Training” additional to the above.
A great number of these are trainings are done by other members giving tips, using experiences that led them to having a successful business.
And, there is more. Yes more!
Besides this, there is one more piece of the puzzle for people to become successful with affiliate marketing…
This is probably the best learning of all. The networking within the membership.
This alone is probably worth the cost.
Here is some inside info for you, in addition to the classes offered above.
- Any problems you may have with understanding concepts will generally be answered within the hour, or earlier.
- People forming partnerships to promote e-books, or work on videos or podcasts.
- Providing tips on publishing, and links to other helpful sites.
- Keeping people motivated and working towards their goals.
The tips and advice offered by other members, is the perfect way of broadening members knowledge. There are often complaints about the training in wealthy affiliate being out of date, even though it underwent a major overhaul in 2021.
The fact is technology is an ever evolving thing, but the basics tend to stay they the same. To say it is outdated is a bit rich I think.
I don’t agree with everything written in the training at WA, but there is nearly always discussion going on about, Google algorithms, Search Engine Optimization, SEO plugins.
Members of WA often do question some of the WA methods in blog posts on the WA site, giving detailed comparisons between WA’s training and their own methods.
That is one of the great things about it.
One example here
Can this be confusing? For some yes. But the affiliate world outside of WA is all about improving your website, your content, and (most importantly), the readers experience.
So while the core content in the WA trainings is good, and needs to be evergreen (so newbies don’t become confused), the additional info provided by other members, and the weekly video’s helps…
- Keeps a flow of current information
- Provide additional search engine optimization and keyword research
- Provide links to other helpful tools. (Affiliate links are not allowed within WA)
Who is Wealthy Affiliate for?
It’s a 800,000 strong active community (1.4 million+ I’m not counting free members), designed to take complete beginners from 0 to profitable affiliate marketers by offering training, tools, a functioning website, and coaching.
Cost wise you get a lot of bang for your buck.
In theory your membership entitles you to everything to get started building a money making business.
- Training on niche selection.
- A website builder and 1million free +images for use in your content.
- Training Videos and written modules on how to bring free traffic to that site
- Training on how to master paid traffic Bing, Google and Yahoo.
- Your subscription includes all the necessary tools, including a writing platform showing how to set out your blog articles.
- Modules on affiliate programs so you can earn money from your traffic
- Coaching and a very helpful community so you get it right.
It provides a solid foundation for any new affiliate marketer, who can top up their knowledge with additional information from other members, and weekly videos.
There are others who love the fact that you can host up to 50 websites on WA (included in your membership fee), without spending a few hundred dollars a year on hosting for various sites.
This also makes it ideal for those who have built multiple websites over the years in different niches.
Many in WA have been there for years and some have numerous websites working for them.
Is it Suitable for “Advanced” Affiliates?
However, it is not unusual for members, to also be members of some other program.
I don’t mean the shiny object syndrome, I am talking about people wanting to expand their knowledge.
To be honest, WA is not the be all, and end all of affiliate programs.
There are members, who once they have a site earning money for them, outsource the work on that site, to try something different, perhaps learn something new.
It all builds experience. If you can make it on one, can you learn more or do better on another?
This has very little to do with the grass is greener over there, which is what the shiny object syndrome refers to.
WA has a good hosting deal and many “advanced affiliates,” stick with WA, and just create another website, move onto another niche, using the same techniques they learnt in WA, knowing that there is no additional cost for the additional website(s).
Who owns Wealthy Affiliate?
Carson Lim and Kyle Loudon are the two guys who began WA in 2005 with the goal of helping others achieve the same dreams they had – live a life of freedom while earning money via affiliate sales.
They had started affiliate marketing while they were still at university in the late 1990’s early 2000.
You won’t hear much from Carson, he is more into the techie side of things, and he loves to travel.
He does appear occasionally to help with tech issues, or clarify some information.
Kyle on the other hand, seems a bit nerdy, and does read and participate in the blog discussions, and will make a blog post addressing a problem someone may have, or offering advice.
Another person of importance who is heavily involved in wealthy affiliate is Jay Neill.
His online moniker is magistudios
He is the official WA “training coach”. Whether he has any say in how the business runs I don’t know, but as the training coach I am guessing his expertise is called upon.
Actually what he does is the weekly video training, covering all sorts of things internet related. Screenshot below to give you some idea.
This is his experience as shown in WA
Jay has vast experience in the Internet marketing world, from PPC, local marketing, content development, SEO, and website development (programming, wordpress, joomla, drupal).Jay Neill Bio on WA
They are the head honchos of WA, and no doubt have a team of minions doing work in the back office.
Does Wealthy Affiliate have a good reputation?
As possibly the worlds largest affiliate learning program you gotta say it has a solid reputation as a legitimate business.
Over the years there have been thousands of reviews of wealthy affiliate.
It has been scrutinized by just about every competitor, who have rated it as a pyramid scheme, to being useless for anything related to internet marketing, and everything in between.
I have more interesting detail on this a little further down.
Wealthy affiliate complaints…?
What can I say… I am thinking many of those who complain..
- Didn’t get rich overnight; or
- Haven’t been able to sit on their butts and watch the dollars rolling on in.
The world is a rough place and we are well into the instant gratification period of existence on earth.
Sometimes you just got to take what they whine about with a grain of salt, and tell them to harden up.
Is Wealthy Affiliate a pyramid scheme
One claim that has been doing the rounds for years is that WA is a pyramid scheme.
By any serious definition it is not, and I have reviewed lots of MLM’s.
A pyramid scheme is one where new recruits pay upfront costs to members at the top of the pyramid, under the promise of receiving payments when they recruit new members “below” them.
Basically, that just means you pay to get in, and make money by enrolling new people – who then pay you.
WA is not even close.
There are no “down lines,” or precious stone rankings (Bronze, Silver, Gold or diamond).
WA do have rankings for “helpers” though.
If you answer enough questions helping your fellow members, then you get labelled as an Ambassador.
I am not sure sure what perks you get, but there is no money involved so far as I can see.
Unlike MLM, where if your a “Diamond” you are getting a bigger slice of the loot.
In MLM you are constantly on the hunt for new “members” to fill your down line.
Selling products to your friends and family, storing stuff at home, or maxing your credit card buying product to keep your Ruby status, and enrich the “Diamond“.
In affiliate marketing you are creating a website, building a brand, building a following (a business).
You pay for legit training, and if someone signs up off your website you get a commission.
It is no different to say, someone clicking a link on your website for some Amazon product you’ve written a review about.
If they buy, Amazon will pay you a commission. And Amazon is not a MLM.
Is Wealthy Affiliate worth it.?
Those up front costs again: Either $0 or $49 per month ($19 for the first month) OR $359 per year if you decide to pay yearly or $999.00 for the Premium plus membership.
You will see those details if you sign up for the free trial anyway.
Is it worth it? I have heard of people forking out up to $10,000, based on a promise that some Mastermind Guru’s program will make them rich!
So I guess the perception of value is arbitrary.
Value wise there is a lot on offer in WA (in my opinion).
In both the Premium and Premium Plus memberships there is a stack of training created by the wealthy affiliate community (I don’t mean to repeat myself, but there is).
Here are a couple of examples of training from a couple of wealthy affiliate success stories
This one below from VitaliyG. who has training for premium plus members (this is apart from the WA default training).
- How To Choose A Profitable Niche And Bank On It
- How To Find Countless Niche Ideas And Their Income Potential
- Case Studies Of Successful Niche Sites (10 Examples)
- How To Use WA Training To Maximize Your Niche’s Success
- How To Scale Your Niche Site Success And Online Business
- Introduction to Bing Ads and PPC and How It’s A Goldmine
- How to Build Landing Pages That Convert With Bing Ads
- Making Your First Bing Ad, Replicating Success And Scaling
Another by a well known affiliate marketer called Nathaniell. He has been in WA for about 10 years.
- Introduction to Popular Keyword Research Tools
- Social Media Research
- “Series Method Of Publishing”
- How To Not Cannibalize” Keywords
- How To Not “Cannibalize” Kwywords
- Product Reviews
- Top 10 Lists
- Side By Side Comparisons
- Expert Roundups
- Improving Your Old Images With Snagit And Canva
- Improving UX and Add A Table Of Contents
- Optimizing On Page Topics With Search Console
- Improve Internal And External Linking (GA).
Another for you by Tim McKinlay.
- The Foundation Of Hiring A Writer Successfully
- Attracting Talented Writers and Shortlisting Candidates
- Hiring Your Writer And Getting Them Rolling
- Providing Feedback, Providing ROI and Amplifying Results
- Using A Niche Website To Sell Your Own Products
- Creating A Professional Looking Brand Website
- Adding Products And Attracting Buyers To Your Brand Website
- Increasing Sales And Revenue Through Email Marketing
- Creating Your 12 Month Super Affiliate Game Plan
- Increasing Sales By Optimizing Elements On Your Site
- Increasing Sales By Optimizing Elements Within WA
One more (last one I promise), by BenjisDad. He seems to pop up everywhere.
- How To Do Market Research on YouTube
- Branding Your Channel And Creating Bumpers
- How To Become An Authority Channel
- Creating Your Channel Trailer
- How To Choose A Niche For Your YouTube Channel
- How To Plan Out Your Content
- Creating A Brochure Site Resource Page
- Getting Approved For The YouTube Partner Program
- Using Your Influence To Earn More Income
- How To Land Sponsorship
- How To Sell Merchandise
- Finding Profitable Affiliate Programs
- Creating Your Own Digital Product
- How To Go Full Time On YouTube
Is it worth the money? I would say yes, with one rider.
Do the learning and put it into action. So many people are just tossing money into the wind jumping from program to program.
If you are an “experienced” affiliate marketer $20 bucks for 5 weeks is not going to break the bank, and if you come across a couple of gems you never knew about, then it has paid for itself.
You might even want to stick around and fork out for a yearly membership.
lets face it:- No one single system or platform has all the answers, or has all the nitty gritty nuances that go into becoming successful. But there is a continuous exchange of ideas and info within WA, so it comes close. But still…
Some affiliates check out other platforms ( I know there are WA members who are also members of Solo Build It (and vice versa), and others who have tried Affiliroma ?)… there just might be that one thing that brings an AhHa moment, that makes it a game changer for them.
Should I join Wealthy Affiliate?
I am only giving you a rundown of what it offers. If you have got this far, you would know it is not for everyone.
Then again, if you have got this far and have a problem making a decision, then my advice is to sign up and have a good look around in the 7 day trial period.
The free membership lets you dip your toes into the training, getting familiar with affiliate marketing, and start learning keyword research.
You get basically everything Premium members get, so make the most of it.
All the trainings have been updated for 2022, and there is some really useful stuff in there.
Don’t bother fiddling around setting up a free website, that is a total waste of time.
They do come in handy later on, but they are pretty useless initially.
So while it is good to have all this training, you still have to do something.
Think about this:-
- There is a lot of writing involved (particularly in the beginning). They have training on content writing and copywriting.
- A lot of reading (getting knowledge of what works)
- Lots of watching videos ( more expansion of knowledge).
- And research!, niches, keywords, researching competitors (more learning).
- Getting knowledgeable with search engine optimization
If you already have a blog and think you have a head start, you may find some of your methods turned on their head.
If you don’t have a blog and are thinking “It looks like too much work”, you are probably right to click away from this page now.
However given a little time…
Once your site is making money, you can outsource the writing part and concentrate on research.
If you have that all under control, maybe it is time to book a flight to Costa Rica and spend a couple of weeks near the beach.
Or come visit me in Colombia, there are some nice beaches and awesome parties down here.
How does Wealthy Affiliate help you make money?
All it does is provides the tools. You have basically everything needed to build a business and make good money.
The problem is, many people put it on the back burner, and don’t even try.
The two things I keep harping on about here are, the training is up to date and there is always some new tip or information from the community.
You need to understand, there are always outside influences affecting the monetary return for affiliates.
So while training is one part of making money, the other is keeping your business visible.
Just today a guy put up his solution to a problem he was having with Google indexing.
I had one blog post on a particular site that Google just refused to index. It was a good keyword, all the content was original, it was quite long, all the SEO was set up properly, but GSC said the last crawl was back in mid-January (when the post was published) and it hadn’t been crawled since. The only information was the useless “crawled, not indexed” and “but not because of an error”. I had plenty of subsequent posts that had been indexed fine.Phil 1944
In that post he detailed how he found a solution to the issue with Google.
As well you have 24/7 site support for anything related to issues with your site.
The training is only one part of how WA helps you make money. The site support, and members sharing problem solving tips is probably what sets WA apart from other affiliate training platforms.
Here is another tip.
Apart from the training, which is basically a step by step, hold your hand type process (to get you up to speed), there are other avenues in WA for earning money.
After a qualifying time (3 months I think), you can make money publishing training for the members within WA.
People with experience in IT, or experienced marketers who want to share some hack that works for them, (or one that doesn’t), are free do training on things like “how to set up a course on Udemy” (for example), all make money from within WA and paid for by WA, without slugging the members any extra.
A very short sweet post today as I just wanted to say THANK YOU to you all :-)I received a notification to say that some of my training has been approved for a payout, which equates to $65 :-)This is all down to you liking and commenting on my training material, which I am truly grateful for, and I am so happy that it is helping you with your websites and your online businesses, it means the world to me! It’s not huge money, but it is better than a kick in the mouth, considering I am just volunteering…Chrystopher. IT guy in WA
It generally isn’t much money, but it can build to a steady flow, if you are consistent (the secret with everything).
The members are the best resource for making money in WA.
Become involved within the community.
Some of the tips and tricks you can learn there are off the planet.
Like the person who created e-books, and flogged (sold) them to Facebook groups using well known bloggers as affiliates. Hello Mel.
Like I said there is a lot of ingenuity in there.
Combine those tips with the training within WA, and you will be off to the races.
Wealthy Affiliate Controversies
There is no love lost between Solo Build It and WA.
For years they were at each others throats in the forums. Quora, Redditt, and probably a dozen others. I haven’t bothered looking at them for a couple of years.
Occasionally there are still WA vs Solo Build It reviews appearing in the Google pages.
All the controversies have been online where they fight like bad relatives.
Both are Canadian based so who knows, they may be related.
Personally I take no notice of all the rock throwing, much of it is commercial jealously I feel, but you are far better to ignore it and do your own research.
Apart from that and being labelled as a MLM which it is not.
What about The wealthy affiliate lawsuit?
Ok that was about a company called MOBE. It sued WA for writing a review calling it a scam. WA won the court battle and donated the damages they received, to people who had been scammed by MOBE.
Is Wealthy Affiliate a Scam?
Short answer is NO.
You get the 7 day free trial, so do you due diligence and check it out for yourself. Link Here
Other things you should know:
The writing platform for WA is WordPress. If you don’t know, WordPress is used in about 45% of all the websites online.
WA has a “stable” of about 4,000 WordPress themes to select from. All are free versions, and not all are good.
If you go premium, then make sure the WordPress theme you select has been recently updated. Like in the last couple of weeks or so.
What is hardly ever spoken about in the reviews of WA, are the initial steps to setting up a website.
I have spoken about some of the heavy stuff above. While that is all good to know, lets take a look at the steps in getting started.
The updated training in WA makes this a walk in the park.
In this link is a walk through of building a WordPress website done by Kyle. It includes a video as well. You might have to sign up to see it. It won’t cost you anything.
Other changes include: – They no longer use the AISEO search engine optimization plugin (a review here), which is now full of ads; instead they use SEO Framework which is ok.
Some people choose not to use SEO plugins for various reasons. I sort of agree with them, but I find my seo plugin is like a faithful pet.
I use Rank Math because I am essentially lazy. It has a AI feature that comes in handy from time to time.
Conclusion: – Wealthy Affiliate Has Both Pros and Cons
The big question of course is can you make money with wealthy affiliate?
Obviously you can, but it is going to take a little work.
- The additional training offered by the members can be distracting.
- You will not see monetary results for at least 3 months or more (usually), and that’s if you have given up your social life, to get stuck into the training.
- The cost can be a stumbling block.
- The extra training provided by members is segregated. Premium, can only watch premium, Premium Plus can watch anything.
- Some of the training between the default course, and that offered by members can be conflicting.
- Some of the claims made about it online are a bit outlandish.
- You will never gain enough traction to make serious money with the Free for life plan.
- All the default training is in an easy to follow format.
- Lots of videos in the default training so you can see the guts of what Kyle is talking about
- The videos are well presented. Kyle (and Jay), speaks in a clear, deliberate tone. No umming or arring.
- Lots of additional training and videos
- Your website builder comes with image optimization and compression.
- Google page speed optimized, and site speed extreme caching.
- Dual server hosting redundancy. Free SSL and enhanced hosting security.
- Keyword research tool.
- 24/7 Site support.
- A very engaging and helpful community.
There is a lot more to like about it than to hate about it.
At the end of the day it is your decision and your money. At the moment for value it is hard to beat.
One thing about WA is it never raised the price for Premium membership ever.
Now with Premium Plus, I get the feeling that in the near future it will become the default pricing option.
If your serious about wanting to be independent and not reliant on employers, be able to work from home or anywhere that suits you, as and when it suits you, and still make a steady income to be self sufficient/reliant, then it will be worth your while to take a look at this.