Affiliate Marketing SEO: 13 Practical Tips For Better Results

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SEO and affiliate marketing success often go hand-in-hand. 

Joining an affiliate marketing program and promoting relevant products to your online audience is an exceptional way to earn extra income – sometimes even passively. However, the success of your affiliate marketing efforts all depends on your ability to attract and convert the right traffic. 

The more high-intent, relevant people you can attract to your website, blog posts, and product reviews, the more people you can potentially convert. More conversions equals more commissions from your affiliate program.

Search Engine Optimization is how you effectively boost the visibility of your website and content to earn that crucial traffic for your website (and affiliate links). Remember, 68% of all online experiences start with a search engine. 

Blending SEO and affiliate marketing expertise is an excellent way to create sites that earn consistent, recurring, ever-growing traffic, revenue, and profits. That’s why 78.3% of affiliate marketers say they use SEO strategies in their campaigns. 

But mastering affiliate marketing SEO can be tricky, particularly for beginners. That’s why we’re sharing our top tips for better results right here. 

What is Affiliate Marketing SEO? The Basics

Affiliate Marketing and SEO concept with interface and world map on blue background

Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is the process of optimizing content and website pages to ensure they’re placed toward the top of the search engine result pages for specific terms. Search engines like Google use various factors to determine where and how to rank content, such as:

  • Technical SEO elements: XML sitemaps, site indexing, mobile responsivity, page loading speed, working meta-robots, etc. 
  • On-page SEO elements: Short, readable URLs, internal links, high-quality content, relevant image alt text, and meta descriptions. 
  • Off-page SEO elements: High-quality backlinks, social media activity, mentions and references, and earned links from publications.

Affiliate marketing SEO, then, is all about implementing intelligent SEO strategies into your affiliate marketing campaigns. When you combine SEO and affiliate marketing, you create your website, content, and marketing strategies to appeal to both customers and search engines. 

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13 Ways to Boost Results with SEO and Affiliate Marketing

All kinds of SEO strategies can help boost your chances of affiliate marketing success, from technical efforts like optimizing your site for user experiences to conducting keyword research. However, there are some SEO strategies that can be particularly valuable to affiliate marketers. 

Here are our top practical tips for amazing affiliate marketing SEO. 

1. Choose the Right Domain Name for Your Website

This is one of the easiest ways to align your SEO and affiliate marketing strategies from day one, but it’s also frequently overlooked by beginners. Choosing a keyword-rich domain name is an excellent way to get an SEO advantage before you even start publishing blogs. 

Adding even a single keyword to your URL can make all the difference. Start by thinking about your affiliate niche. In other words, which products/services are you going to promote, and which customers do you want to reach? If you’re writing about food and reviewing recipes and kitchen products, a URL that includes words like kitchen, food, baker, or chef makes sense. 

Of course, this doesn’t mean you should fill your business name or site name with random keywords and phrases. You still need to follow basic best practices for naming, such as:

  • Make it memorable: Ensure your name is impactful and evocative. The words “Growth” and Collective,” for instance, make people think of progress and community. 
  • Keep it simple: Avoid lengthy names. Your URL should be short, simple, and easy to remember (as well as simple to spell). 
  • Get the right extension: Ideally, try to get a .com domain extension for your name. It’s the most popular and reputable option for your website.

2. Optimize your Website for User Experience

As mentioned above, Google and other search engines don’t just evaluate your content “rankability” based on how many keywords you use or the number of backlinks you have. They also look at the “experience” you offer to your customers. With that in mind, it’s worth ensuring your website is designed to delight and engage your readers. 

Here are some quick and effective ways to improve user experience on your site while also boosting your affiliate marketing SEO strategy:

  • Increase loading speed: Website bounce rates increase by up to 50% whenever a website page takes more than 2 seconds to load. Higher bounce rates mean lower rankings on the search engine. Speed up your site by using browser caching tools, CDNs, and compression apps to minimize image and video file sizes. 
  • Leverage useful tools and plugins: Upgrade your user’s experience by adding a “recommended articles” carousel to the bottom of every blog post. Or give them a search bar so they can find the content most relevant to them. This both improves user experiences and increases the time customers spend on your site. The more time customers spend interacting with your content, the more authoritative you appear to Google. 
  • Get the structure right: Structuring your website correctly means ensuring it’s easy for users to navigate through your pages and find the right content. Group your keywords into categories and subcategories to create “segments” for your site, and use tags to help keep all related content organized in the right sections. 

As an example of a UX-focused site structure, take a look at how the Growth Collective blog page is laid out. We’ve added a range of clickable categories to the top of the page to help users filter through the content that’s most valuable to them:

A screenshot of blog categorization from Growth Collective site

3. Make Connections with Internal Links

Often, when marketers look at the power of linking for SEO, they focus on backlinks earned from other authority websites and publications. While those links are important, don’t underestimate the power of internal linking too. 

Internal links connect relevant pages on your website, making it easier for customers to dive deeper into specific topics or learn more about new ideas. They also help search engines crawl through your website and find out which blogs and posts are connected. 

You’ve probably already noticed major successful sites like HubSpot using internal link strategies in their own content: 

Sales Trend Report 2024 screenshot

The great thing about using internal links with affiliate marketing SEO is that even if customers don’t click an affiliate link in the first blog they read, you boost their chances of eventually converting by directing them to more promotional content across your website. 

Here are some quick tips to help enhance your internal linking strategy:

  • Use descriptive anchor text: For instance, if you want to link to a blog about increasing conversion rates, you might use the text “How to increase conversion rates” as an anchor.
  • Focus on linking to your most important pages: Try to include plenty of internal links to pages that feature lots of affiliate content. For instance, linking to “best of” lists, where you promote numerous products at once, is a good way to boost your chances of conversions. 
  • Don’t use links at random: Try to think of each link as an opportunity to give your reader some extra value. Don’t just litter your text with irrelevant links.

4. Develop a Strong Backlink Strategy

Backlinks are one of the most important tools you have for affiliate marketing, SEO, and business growth. The more backlinks you earn from reputable companies and domains, the more your own domain authority grows. Plus, earning backlinks from industry experts can also help to position your brand as a thought leader in a specific niche. 

Most importantly, plenty of backlinks to your pages means you access more traffic you can guide towards your affiliate links. So, how do you earn good backlinks?

  • Commit to regular outreach: Earning backlinks from high-quality influencers and experts in your niche isn’t simple. You’ll need to really build relationships with some professionals and make sure they trust you enough to link to your website. 
  • Offer something of genuine value: Most companies don’t want to send customers away from their websites. If you want to convince them to link back to your pages, you need to promise something genuinely valuable. For instance, you might provide access to an exclusive infographic, guide, or interview.  
  • Write guest posts: Guest posts are one of the best ways to get backlinks and traffic. However, it’s important to approach this strategy right. Choose domains and websites to post on that already have a strong connection with your target audience and a good domain rating. Make sure you follow their instructions carefully when creating content. 

Remember to regularly check the quality of your backlinks, too, using tools like Ahrefs and SEMRush to ensure you’re not getting too many links from low-quality domains. 

Master Dynamic Backlink Management with the Semrush Link Building Suite

5. Product Link-Worthy and Shareable Assets

This affiliate marketing SEO tip technically follows from the last one. Creating high-quality assets for your website increases the chances that other companies will want to link back to you, directing more traffic your way. However, high-quality assets also have another benefit. 

When you create something genuinely useful for your target audience, they’ll be more likely to share it with their community through email, social media, and so on. You can actually activate your community to do most of your marketing for you. 

So, what counts as a link-worthy, shareable asset? That all depends on your target audience and your niche. Good examples might include:

  • Downloadable resources: Give users free resources to download, such as ebooks, whitepapers, guides, checklists, or even educational videos. This is a great way to generate leads and increase the visibility of your site. 
  • Reports and studies: Reports and studies that feature unique statistics and insights are extremely valuable to all kinds of consumers. However, they’re often particularly attractive in the B2B world. If you’re marketing B2B products, like software or technology, sharing reports and studies could be a great way to boost your traffic. 
  • Free tools: Free tools like calculators or checklists are fantastic for generating backlinks and shares. For instance, HubSpot has a calculator on its website that can help users calculate their return on investment from certain marketing tools. Not only is this a useful resource, but it allows HubSpot to collect lead contact details by asking for an email address. 
Investment calculation screenshot

6. Reshape Your Keyword Strategy

Keywords are obviously one of the most crucial tools in your affiliate marketing SEO strategy. They’re essential to telling customers and search engines what your content is all about. However, not all keywords are created equally – particularly for affiliate marketers. 

When you’re choosing keywords for your affiliate marketing campaigns, there are two things you should focus on intent and long-tail keywords. 

“Intent” in keyword research refers to what your customers hope to achieve when they search for something online. Some customers are looking for information, and others are searching specifically for certain products or brands. While it’s important to create content that captures all forms of intent, purchase-intent keywords have the most value for affiliate marketers. 

Consumers with “commercial” or “purchase” intent are at the “bottom of the sales funnel.” They’ve already defined they have a problem they want to fix, and now they’re looking for a solution; this means they’re more likely to convert. Commercial intent keywords often feature modifiers like “best” (e.g., best coffee makers) or “review” (email marketing software review). 

You can also look at keyword phrases that include specific product names or words like “Buy,” “Discount,” or “Near Me.” Tools like SEMRush can help you identify intent for each term:

Keyword intent in SEMRush

Alongside choosing keywords with the right “intent” connected to them, it’s important to ensure you’re not going too broad with your terms. Longer-tail keywords, such as “The best chewable vitamins for kids,” may not drive as much traffic. 

However, they will help you to reach a more specific audience (increasing conversion rates). Plus, they come with less competition to fight against, so you’re more likely to get rapid results.  

7. Create High-Quality Content

This should go without saying, but quality content is crucial to most marketing strategies. If you want to boost your chances of growth and convert as many customers with your affiliate links as possible, you need amazing content. It’s the key to getting customers to actually trust your recommendations.

Plus, while Google’s algorithms and ranking strategies are always changing, the search engines always prioritize exceptional content. The more value you bring to users in your content, the more likely you are to increase your rankings. 

As an affiliate marketer, the best affiliate marketing SEO content is likely to include pieces with high levels of “EEAT.” In other words, your content should show experience, expertise, and authority to generate trust from your target audience. It should also be unique, original, and easy to read. 

To boost your conversions, we recommend focusing on content that aligns with specific customer pain points. In other words, produce pieces that help your customers solve a problem. Options include:

  • Pricing pieces: Content that discusses the various prices available for different types of products or different editions and variations of the same product. 
  • Comparison posts: Pieces that help customers choose one product or solution over something similar (this is a great way to promote two products at once). 
  • Alternative posts: Blogs and articles that look at alternatives to popular solutions customers might have already reviewed, such as the “top alternatives to Upwork.” 
  • Best of posts: List-style posts that review all of the “best” options on the market for a specific pain point. Such as “the 10 best ecommerce platforms for 2024”. 
  • Use case posts: Content that outlines the various issues or situations a product or service would be useful for. 

Keep in mind that when creating high-quality content, you don’t have to focus exclusively on written content. Videos, podcasts, infographics, and images can all help you make an impact, too. 

8. Add Affiliate Links to High-Performing Pages

If you’re planning on using SEO and affiliate marketing together to increase your income, it’s worth noting you don’t always have to start your strategy from scratch. In fact, you could end up with better, quicker results just by infusing affiliate links into your existing high-performing content. 

Obviously, there’s a strategy to this. You can’t just choose your top ten high-traffic pages and embed your affiliate links into them. You still need to ensure you’re adding links to pages that are relevant to the product or service. However, adding a link to content that’s already performing well can be a great way to refresh and enhance the performance of your existing assets. 

To get started, check out your website analytics. You can use tools like Google Analytics or the Google Search Console to define which pages on your site have the most traffic. 

5 Traffic Types and What They Mean in Google Analytics - Blog for SEO  Digital Marketing & Web Design | SMR

Once you find the ideal pages, make a list of pages relevant to the affiliate keywords you want to target. For instance, if you’re trying to promote a new smartphone, you’d focus on pages that already discuss smartphones and similar technology. 

Finally, choose the pages where it makes the most sense to showcase your keywords and add your affiliate links to the existing content. Remember to use anchor link best practices here to ensure your customers know you’re going to be sending them to a product or service page. 

9. Audit, Prune, and Update Old Content

Most marketers investing in SEO and content marketing know that “content pruning” is crucial to success. The authority and rank of your website depend on how effectively you share fresh, relevant, and accurate content with your audience. If your content is outdated and irrelevant, then it’s not going to earn traffic or improve your reputation. 

Content pruning is particularly important with affiliate marketing SEO. The chances are most of the affiliate links you’re given to promote will have a limit on how long they work. After a while, companies might change tracked links, which means you no longer get commissions for conversions.

Even if your links still work perfectly, updating and refreshing your old content is a good way to make sure you keep attracting new traffic and delivering value to your audience. 

Every few months, go back through your articles and ask yourself which could benefit from a little refresh or change. Pay attention to your top-performing articles that are starting to lose traffic and underperforming pages that are dropping down in the search results. 

You can use Google Search Console to help you identify which pages you might need to update. Once you’ve got your list, refresh your content with new insights, up-to-date stats, more internal links, images, and videos. Then, monitor the results of your changes. 

10. Ensure Your Site is Mobile Optimized

This is one of the most important SEO tips every business owner should be following – particularly today. About 92.3% of internet users access the web on their mobile phones. That means there’s a pretty good chance people will be reading your content and clicking your links on a smartphone. 

Optimizing your affiliate website for mobile users is important to ensure they get a great experience on your site. However, it’s also crucial to guarantee you can make revenue from your affiliate links. If your links don’t load properly or are difficult to click on mobile devices, you’re missing out. 

You can assess how well your pages perform on mobile by visiting your website on your own device. Or you can use Google Chrome and similar browsers to toggle between device views. Here’s a quick guide on how to do this. Make sure your:

  • Pages load quickly across all devices (to keep bounce rates low)
  • Links are easily visible and easy to click
  • Product tables and images work perfectly on all screen sizes

If your website isn’t loading correctly on mobile, you have a few options. You can reach out to a developer and ask them to make changes to your site design or theme. Alternatively, if you’re using a tool like WordPress or Wix, you should be able to update your theme to a more responsive option.

Once you’ve made your changes, use the “mobile-friendly test” from Google to ensure checking all the right boxes to be placed high on the search engine results pages for your target terms. 

11. Don’t Underestimate Voice Search

It’s easy to get caught up thinking about how customers search for topics on Google by “typing” terms into a search engine. However, if you really want to master affiliate marketing SEO, you need to adapt to changing trends and customer behaviors. For instance, right now, around 50% of all searches come from users accessing “voice assistants” to ask questions. 

Think about the last time you wanted to find information about a new phone or video game. If you had access to “Siri” on your phone or “Google Home” via your smart speaker, you might have asked those tools to search for you. 

Optimizing your affiliate content for voice search is a good way to boost your chances of more traffic and elevate your position on the search result pages. To get started:

  • Write conversationally: Avoid boring, lengthy sentences. Speak to your readers like you’re talking to an actual person. This means you’ll be more likely to capture the attention of search engine tools looking for conversational phrases like “cafes near me.” 
  • Embed questions into your content: When people use their voice for search, they don’t just say “best hair supplements.” They ask, “What are the best hair supplements?” Adding questions to your content is a good way to rank for those terms. 
  • Add more long-tail keywords: Beef up your content with long-tail keywords. We often use more words in our queries when we’re searching with our voice, so don’t be afraid to experiment with “latent semantic indexing” keywords. 

Bonus tip – creating more long-form content, such as 3000-word plus articles, can help boost your voice search potential, too. The more content you include in your post, the more chances you have of naturally using long-tail keywords. Just make sure every word in your post delivers value. Don’t just add words for the sake of it. 

12. Harness the Featured Snippet

The featured snippet is the short summary answer that appears at the top of a Google search above the “People also ask” section:

Google search on featured snippets

These are the first things customers see when they’re searching for terms online. They’re also often the source of the content customers hear when they ask their smart assistants questions. If you can successfully earn a spot in the “featured snippet” section, your affiliate marketing SEO results will skyrocket. In fact, featured snippet pages can earn 54.4% of all search traffic for a term.

There are a few ways you can boost your chances of reaching the featured snippet. For instance, using a question-based heading, such as “What is affiliate marketing SEO?” is a good strategy. You can also:

  • Include summaries: Featured snippets try to answer questions as quickly and concisely as possible for searches. If your 3,000-word article is trying to answer one or two basic questions, the search engines can’t show all of that content. Try summarizing it into a small section at the top or bottom of your page. 
  • Use FAQs: FAQs are ideal for reaching the featured snippet. They give you tons of ways to answer common customer questions in a quick and concise manner. Plus, if your responses are good, you can also boost your chances of appearing in the “People also ask” section.
  • Use the right keywords: Once again, keywords are important here. Ideally, you want to choose terms that have reasonably high search volumes and excellent relevance for your target audience but low levels of competition. 

13. Monitor and Act on Your Analytics

Finally, we have some (potentially) bad news for you. Mastering affiliate marketing SEO takes time and work. Both SEO and affiliate marketing won’t deliver amazing results overnight, particularly without any work. You’ll need to commit to constantly optimizing and upgrading your strategy.

The only way to do that is to pay attention to the right metrics. Once you’ve started posting affiliate content online, following all the tips above, gather as much data as you can. Some of the most important metrics to monitor for affiliate marketers include:

  • Impressions: How many people see your affiliate links?
  • Clicks: The number of clicks your links receive.
  • Conversions: The number of sales or conversions generated from each page. 

You can dive into your analytics using tools like Google Analytics, SEMRush, and Ahrefs. Or, if you’re working with an affiliate marketing program provider that has its own analytical tools, use those. Each piece of data you get can help guide the next decision you make.

For instance, if your number of impressions is high and your clicks are low, the problem could be that your offer doesn’t resonate with your customers, or people can’t see your link. If your clicks are high but your conversions are low, the problem could be with the product itself.

Make sure you pay attention to where your conversions and results are coming from, too. For instance, if you promote a product across various different pages, use a sub-ID on your affiliate URL to determine specifically which link within a page is generating the most clicks and sales.

Mastering Affiliate Marketing SEO

Person Click on Yellow Keyboard Button with Text Affiliate Marketing and SEO

At this point, you should have all the information you need to start using SEO and affiliate marketing in tandem. The more you master affiliate marketing SEO, the more likely you’ll be to earn significant commissions from your campaigns. After all, more traffic means more conversion opportunities. 

Just remember that the key to ongoing success is constant evolution and optimization. Once you start seeing results from your SEO strategies, don’t just stop working. Keep looking for new ways to improve your conversion rates and attract more traffic. 

If you’re struggling to reach your targets, or your traffic begins to dwindle, and you don’t know why, getting help from an expert can be an ideal strategy. At Growth Collective, we can match you with an affiliate marketing or SEO consultant who can help you elevate your strategy. 

Reach out today to find out more about working with an affiliate marketing SEO consultant.


Is SEO Good for affiliate marketing?

Using SEO in your affiliate marketing strategies is one of the best ways to boost your income and increase your chances of success. Search Engine Optimization tactics will increase your access to crucial, quality traffic and give you more opportunities to convert customers. 

Is PPC or SEO better for affiliate marketing?

SEO in affiliate marketing focuses on getting organic traffic, while PPC focuses on earning traffic from paid promotions. This means you can elevate your affiliate marketing strategy with SEO without having to pay to promote your content. Paying for promotion could eat into your profits. 

How does SEO affiliate marketing work?

SEO affiliate marketing combines the best strategies for search engine optimization with your affiliate marketing tactics to boost your results. It’s all about optimizing affiliate pages to be as discoverable and visible as possible to your ideal target audience. 

How do you succeed in affiliate marketing?

To make a great income with affiliate marketing, choose the right niche and affiliate program, create solid content (with SEO strategies), and focus on delighting your visitors. Make sure you know your products, engage with your target audience and always track your metrics.

Rebekah Carter
Former company
About Author
Rebekah is a dedicated writer with years of experience producing exceptional content for brands around the globe. Her commitment to producing the best possible content means she’s constantly developing new skills and experience.
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