If you are new at Affiliate Marketing, you might be wondering what are some of the free traffic sources that you can use to send traffic to your affiliate offers.
Maybe you don’t have the budget to spend on paid ads or you want to validate the business model before investing your money in it.
Some affiliate marketers, including myself, prefer to use free traffic sources over paid ones even when we could invest on ads.
Free traffic sources require you to provide value in order to attract potential buyers which at the same time, helps you gain the trust of the audience and increases the chances of conversion.
Regardless of your motivation, there are dozens of great free traffic sources you can use for Affiliate Marketing. In this article, I have compiled what I consider the best ones available as well as how to make the best of them to succeed in your business.
Why use free traffic sources for Affiliate Marketing?
As an affiliate, choosing a traffic source is one key factor that’ll influence your Affiliate Marketing business.
You should consider your audience and where they “hang out” as well as your own preferences and strengths.
Ultimately, you want to do some proper research of the platform and what it entails so you know what to expect and don’t change your mind once you have started. While you can be successful with almost any traffic source, you must stick with one for long enough so you can see results.
Free traffic might require more time to get traction when compared to paid in-demand traffic. But it has many benefits that attract beginners and experts affiliate marketers:
- No monetary risk. Using a free traffic source allows you to get started with Affiliate Marketing without putting your hard-earned money at risk. As a beginner, you are going to make mistakes and learn as you go with any platform, The difference is that when using free traffic you won’t lose money as you learn.
- Low-entry barrier. Using a free traffic source means you can get started with affiliate marketing for literally zero dollars. All you need to do is put in some time and work and you can build a profitable business from scratch.
- You build authority. When you use a free traffic source, your content is what will attract potential buyers so you must provide value and position yourself as an authority in your niche. This will then support the success of your affiliate marketing business.
Best Free Traffic Sources For Affiliate Marketing
Are you ready to send free traffic to your affiliate offers? Here are my 12 top free sources traffic for affiliate marketing, without any particular order:
Youtube is one of my favorite platforms to generate free traffic for affiliate marketing. It doesn’t only allow you to get passive traffic to your affiliate offers for months after a video is published, but it also provides value and builds trust at the same time (considering that your content is of good quality).
This means that the quality of traffic that you get from Youtube is better and will result in a better conversion rate.
Also, Youtube works as a search engine so the people who watch your videos are actively looking for a solution or an answer that you can help provide. They are further ahead in their buying journey and are more willing to click and buy the offers you recommend since they are aware of their needs and how it can benefit them.
Since Youtube works as a search engine, it takes some time for videos to rank and start showing on search results. But once they do, they can bring you free highly targeted visitors for months and even years after published. If you have a funnel in place, this is a great way to guarantee passive income with zero ad spend.
You can add your affiliate link in the description and mention in the video that they can get the product/service you are mentioning through your links as in the image below.
Pinterest is usually known as a platform to find food, decor, and fitness inspiration but it is actually a popular search engine and an underrated source of free traffic.
I once heard someone say Pinterest was “like a dumb Google” and that is thruth went it comes to its search engine functionality.
In this sense, Pinterest is not as ‘sophisticated’ as Google and you have a better chance of ranking for search results by simply including the relevant keyowrds in your profile, boards and pins.
The competition in Pinterest is also lower so ranking on search results is easier and can take less time. While it can take up to 12 months to rank on Google results, with Pinterest you can start seeing significant traffic after 3-6 months.
It also has a social media component since people can ‘repin’ your pins and help you reach new audiences and get more traffic to your affiliate offers.
Additionally, Pinterest has a very distinct audience that is perfect for affiliate marketing, According to this study, shopping is a top priority for 48% of Pinterest users while the percentage is way lower in other social platforms.
Some of the best niches to get free traffic to your affiliate marketing offers from Pinterest include Health & Fitness, Cooking, Decor, Travel, Crafts, Fashion, Beauty, Parenting, Blogging, and Lifestyle.
In 2016 Pinterest lifted the ban on affiliate links so you can use your affiliate links directly as the destination for your pins. However, be mindful to spread them out since pinning the same URL too repeatedly can get your account flagged as spam.
Facebook has different features that can be used for Affiliate Marketing but not all of them are free or will give you good results.
Facebook Pages, for example, used to be a good way to build an audience and promote your products. But nowadays, Facebook prefers to have brands paying for ads if they want to reach their audience. This is why Facebook Pages have almost zero organic reach and are not worth creating unless you plan on running paid ads.
Yet, there are still two good Facebook features you can use to get free traffic to your affiliate products:
3.1. Facebook Profile
With a few tweaks, you can use your own personal Facebook profile to generate unlimited free traffic to your affiliate offers.
If you think about it, every time you interact with someone new on Facebook, you have the curiosity to check their profiles.
The same happens when you do networking inside Facebook groups, talk with someone new or read a comment that catches your attention.
Considering that premise, you can optimize your profile to attract potential clients and get free traffic to your affiliate links.
How? By optimizing all the now unemployed elements of your profile and using them in your favor.
As you can see in the example below the goal is to get people that visit your profile to click on your images by offering an incentive (lead magnet). This way, your Facebook profile into a funnel that will drive people into an opt-in page to get their emails and then directly to your affiliate offers.
Once your profile is optimized all you need to do is join Facebook groups related to your affiliate niche and interact with people in the comments (without being spammy). You want is to provide value so they feel curious about you and check your profile.
Check out this article to learn how to implement this strategy step by step
3.2 Facebook Groups
Facebook Groups are features that you can use to get free traffic to your Affiliate Marketing offers for free while building a community that will be interested in your recommendation for the long-term.
Contrary to Facebook Pages, Groups can still have a good organic reach and are easier to manage since the member themselves keep the conversation going and help maintain the engagement.
Once your group grows, people will join for the opportunity to network and engage with other members. But when your group is still small, you want to provide value and give people a reason to join like a freebie or the chance to join exclusive lives inside the group.
You can then promote your affiliate offers inside the group (while proving value), create a pinned post with resources where you include your links, and whenever someone makes a question where one of your affiliate products is relevant.
Chech the image below for an example of a welcome / pinned post.
You can also use the cover picture to attract people to your opt-in page and from there to your affiliate offer like I explained above when using a Personal Profile.
Gone are the days where you could grow an Instagram page to 100k in a couple of months but it if you are consistent and learn how to play the algorithm in your favor, you can still get a lot of free traffic to your affiliate offers with Instagram.
When you create an Instagram Business account you get the option to add a website to your bio so this is where you can place your affiliate links or something like a link.tree where you can add multiple links.
Additionally, when you reach 10,000 followers, you can also add a link to your Instagram stories so people can swipe up directly and go to the website which can help you drive a lot more traffic to your offers.
One benefit of Instagram is that theme or niche pages can work great which is great for people who don’t want to create a personal brand or show their faces.
You can simply create a brand related to your affiliate niche and even share content from other users as shown in the example below. But make sure to create original contetn as well since that is what will help you grow your account faster.
Mastering the Instagram algorithm would require its own post but a key factor is to always take advantage of the new features when they come out.
Instagram is always testing new ways to keep people on the platform for longer so when they released a new feature (such as Stories, IGTV, or Reels), it ‘pushes’ that type of content and gives you an easier way to reach more people.
Up until 2019, TikTok was considered an app for kids, dances and pranks. But, when the pandemic hit and everybody was stuck at home with their homes, other demographics and niches started joining the platfrom and now has a diverse, profitable and massive audience.
Today, TikTok’s growth is showing no signs of stopping. The latest TikTok statistics show that as of April 2020, the popular video app has been downloaded more than two billion times worldwide on both the Apple App Store and Google Play.
Of course, lots of content creators have also joined the app and taken advantage of its exponential growth to build a huge audience at record speed. Even with content creators joining the app every day, it is still in its early stages and the demand for content is so huge that it is really easy to grow an account and get free traffic.
I am not Tiktok famous (yet) but I was able to grow my account to almost 10k in less than 2 months. Something that would be impossible in any other social media.
As in other social media platform, Tiktok allows you to add an URL to your profile that you can use to place your affiliate links or your landing pages.
Below you can see the traffic I was able to generate almost 19,000 visits from TikTok in just 2 months. Not bad if you ask me.
To add an URL to your profile you need to use a Business account or a Creator Account with at least 1000 followers. I recommend using a Business One and Switching to Creator as soon as you hit that goal. That way you’ll have access to all the cool sounds that make TikTok unique.
6. Email Marketing
As an affiliate marketeer, your email list s the most valuable asset you will have and one of the best ways to get free unlimited traffic to your affiliate offers.
Those who have subscribed to your email list already know you and trust you enough to want to hear what you have to offer so the traffic you get from it will be highly trageted traffic and have a better conversion rate vs. ‘cold’ traffic.
It is calculated that marketers can make $1-$5/month per email subscriber depending on the niche and how you maintain the relationship with your subscribers. It is not enough to have an email list but you must email your list regularly so they don’t forget about you and send them a mix of both promotional emails and valuable content.
One of the best ways to grow your affiliate list is to offer a free item or ‘freebie’ to those who subscribe such as an ebook, pdf guide, etc. This way also provides value and helps you gain their trust and build your reputation as an authority.
Check out this article later to learn how to build an email list for affiliate marketing
You’ll need to use an email automation software or autoresponder to send your email campaigns to your subscribers.
There are many to choose from but not all of them are affiliate-friendly. This means that they don’t allow affiliate links or will send your emails to the promotion tab if you include them.
The one I use and recommend is ActiveCampaign. I have been using it for affiliate marketing for years and have never had any issues. The deliverability is great and it has the most complete features to optimize your affiliate campaigns.
7. SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) refers to the process of optimizing your website or blog so it can appear on the top results of search engines such as Google and Bing.
Being ranked for a great and competitive keyword will get you lots of free highly targeted traffic since people who visit your site are already looking for topics related to your offer.
Once people come to your site, you can recommend your affiliate offers as part of the solution to their problems or needs.
But as you can imagine, this is a very competitive space and ranking for your desired keywords requires some hard work and high-quality content. It can also take up to 12 months for your website to stop showing on search results. It is not a short-term strategy but it is still 100% worth it and can help you generate passive income for years.
Of course, in order to take advantage of this unlimited source of free traffic, you need to have a website or a blog which is something a lot of new affiliates seem to avoid.
If you are interested in taking advantage of this method make sure to check out this article on how to start your own affiliate marketing blog. If rather link directly to your affiliate offer or just use a landing page, then the other sources in this article will work best for you.
Quora is a question-and-answer website where all of the content is generated by users. Anyone can publish their question and anyone can answer as well.
This means that you can find questions that are related to your niche and post an answer where you include your affiliate link.
Quora has a Domainn Authority of 93 so it often ranks for highky competitive keywords. and You can take advantage of it to get highly trageted free traffic to your affiliate links.
The key is to create thorough answers that really help and provide value to the users, otherwise if you just post a few words along with your affiliate link, you run the risk of being flagged as spam an even get your account canceled.
In the image above you can see an example of answer that includes an affiliate link.
You should also try to spread out your links and answer some questions where do don’t include them so your profile looks less ‘spammy’.
Reddit is a network of communities based on people’s interests. It combines web content, social news, a forum, and a social network into one giant platform.
Members can contribute content such as images, text, videos, and links which then can be voted up or down by other members.
Over the past 5 years, the number of Reddit monthly active users has grown by 258.33% and currently sits at 430 million monthly active users.
A great factor about Reddit is that peopel see it as a place to give and get trustworthy unbaised recommendations from other redditors so it is a great opprotunity to drive consistent targeted traffic to your affiliate offers.
Just like qith Quora, you must add comments that add value to the user so that it doesn’t look spammy. This will not only help you not get kicked out but also to get your comments up voted and seeing by more users.
Reddit does not allow the placement of direct affiliate links but you can link to a website or video first and from there to your affiliate offers.
This doesn’t mean there are not people trying to use affiliate links directly (and getting away with it) but it is not a long-term strategy since they’ll eventually be caught.
Medium is one of the hottest content platforms out there today. It can be considered an online magazine and blogging platform among other things. Regardless of its exact categorization, it represents a huge opportunity to drive free traffic to your affiliate offers.
You can sign up for Medium for free, publish articles related to your niche and start getting readers immediately. You can include affiliate links in your articles as long as you include a disclousre.
You also want to make sure to create quality content since that is what Medium is known for and what its readers expect.
When people sign up with Medium, they are prompted to choose a few categories that they are interested in and then the algorithm chooses and deliver content to their email based on their interests and reading history.
This means your articles can be sent directly to the inboxes of Medium readers everyday!
With over 500 million users, LinkedIn is considered the most useful social network for businesses. However, it is also one of the most overlooked social networking platforms. Especially when it comes to driving traffic to a website, blog, or affiliate marketing offers.
While, Twitter and Facebook are used for entertainment purposes, LinkedIn is seen as a plave to make professional connections so it if you can establish yourself as an authority in your niche, you tap into LinkedIn untapped traffic potential.
In a similar way than Facebook, you can use LinkedIn to create long form posts, share articles from your blog (or others’). You can include affiliate links in Updates, Posts and Messages but it should only be 20% of your content.
You can also join LunkedIn Groups that are related to your niche or industry and get access to new audiences that could be interested in your offers. make helping people and building your authority your priority and keep the affiliate offers for when they are relevant.
Finally, you can use, LinkedIn answers as a great source of free traffic. All you have to do is to browse through the questions relevant to your niche and answer on a regular basis to establish yourself as an expert.
What is the best free traffic source?
The best traffic source for affiliate marketing is the one you feel most comfortable with and will actually use.
The best one for me might not be the best for you. I am a copywriter by profession so when I started with Affiliate Marketing, it made sense to start with a blog.
Someone else might be very comfortable on camera and hate writing so would prefer using Youtube or Tiktok. And someone who likes graphic design might choose Pinterest.
Once you have taken into account that your tagret audience is in that platfrom, choosing your traffic source for affiliate marketing is a very personal matter.
The key is that you can be succesful with any of them as long as you stick with one long enough. It takes time and learning so you don’t want to switch and quit before seeing results.
How to get started with Affiliate Marketing?
Once you have chosen your free traffic source, the next step is to take action. Trust me, the only regret you’ll get once you start making money is not having started sooner.
You don’t need to invent the wheel or figure things out on your own to succeed. As a beginner, your best bet is to find someone who is doing affiliate marketing successfully and follow their steps. It’ll save you a lot of time and frustration.
There are many great sources of free traffic for your affiliate marketing offers and you don’t need a big budget to get started or succeed. If you focus on providing value and being consistent, you your traffic will begin to increase and you will get the results you are hoping for!
Which one of these traffic sources will you try? Let me know in the comments!