The Best Affiliate Marketing Books That You Should Read!
Want to know the truth about affiliate marketing books?
There aren’t many good books on affiliate marketing.
As I was doing my research for this, I noticed that most of the articles on this matter were recommending self-published Affiliate Marketing books on Amazon that ghostwriters wrote for cheap (darn affiliate marketers promoting their own books). That’s not what you’re in for in my article.
I’ve been an affiliate marketer for the last 4+ years, and I remember researching affiliate marketing at night after work (heck even on vacation) for a fair amount of time before really diving in. I wanted to read more about how average Joes started an affiliate marketing website and made job-replacing income.
I was looking for a complete guide to affiliate marketing, but there was none. The reality of affiliate marketing books is that they’re challenging to write because there are different ways people get to your website(s).
Affiliate marketing itself isn't a complicated way to make money online. It’s basically promoting other people’s products (through an affiliate marketing program such as Amazon Associates or an affiliate network) with affiliate links and getting rewarded with commissions. Where it gets complicated is the ever-changing rules of traffic channels that require even the best books to release new editions every other year.
Traffic sources range from Google, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, or a combination of them. Writing a book about affiliate marketing plus the traffic channels, plus other essential skills, like copywriting, is a tall task (which is why there are few books in the market for this).
The best books on affiliate marketing, thus, are the ones that focus on one topic, and all add up to you being a competent affiliate marketer. This includes books on the entrepreneurial mindset, writing, copywriting, digital marketing strategies, and books that specialize on traffic sources.
Below are 9 of the best affiliate marketing books I’ve compiled and recommend you add to your reading list after years in my affiliate marketing journey. Read them and take your first step in the affiliate world!
The 9 Best Affiliate Marketing Books You Should Have On Your Shelf
|From Nothing||Affiliate Marketing||Check Price on Amazon|
|DotCom Secrets||Marketing Strategy||Check Price on Amazon|
|Everybody Writes||Content & Copywriting||Check Price on Amazon|
|Web Copy That Sells||Copywriting||Check Price on Amazon|
|SEO 2020||Google Traffic||Check Price on Amazon|
|Ultimate Guide to Google AdWords||Google Advertising||Check Price on Amazon|
|Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook||Content Marketing||Check Price on Amazon|
|The E-Myth Revisited||Mindset||Check Price on Amazon|
|The War of Art||Mindset||Check Price on Amazon|
#1. From Nothing: Everything You Need to Profit from Affiliate Marketing, Internet Marketing, Blogging, Online Business, e-Commerce and More… Starting With <$100
Author: Ian Pribyl
Skill Level: Beginner
Category: Affiliate Marketing/Internet Business
This is the only authentic book on affiliate marketing I’ve come across. The author has been a successful affiliate marketer for over 16 years now. There's a lot to learn from this affiliate marketing expert.
The book covers:
- the business model
- niche research
- setting up your website
- getting traffic to your site
- making money from affiliate marketing
Unlike books on Amazon titled “… Guide to Affiliate Marketing” this book does a good job of covering the affiliate marketing business model and is an actual internet marketer.
#2. Dotcom Secrets: The Underground Playbook for Growing Your Company Online with Sales Funnels
Author: Russell Brunson
Skill Level: Beginner-Intermediate
Category: Marketing Strategy
This book applies to any online business and should be read from the get go. The goal of this book is to teach business owners how to guide consumers down a series of steps (ie. free gift -> sales page -> upsell) via a website (or a website sales funnel).
Russel Brunson, being one of the co-founders of Clickfunnels (a funnel building software), is an expert at making money online with sales funnels and has been an affiliate in the past himself.
No matter what traffic source you end up using, or what affiliate program you join, Russell can help you get a better understanding of how people get successful in the affiliate marketing industry.
Related: read our review of DotCom Secrets.
Note: although this book (and the rest of the books on this list) is not strictly about affiliate marketing, it’s about selling products and services online. This is essentially what affiliate marketing is, except you’re acting an online salesperson, so nevertheless, all these books contribute to affiliate marketing.
#3. Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content
Author: Ann Handley
Skill Level: Beginner
Category: Content Marketing
Everybody Writes is my go-to book for becoming a better writer (it’s an ongoing process). You see, unless you’re solely going to be making videos or posting images to get visitors to click on your links, you’re going to have to learn how to write content.
What I like about this book is that it’s digestible and value-packed by an author that writes content professionally online.
She tells you to toss out what you learned in high school/college English classes and shows you how to write and connect with people online.
The most valuable part of this book, in my opinion, is chapter 6, “Follow a Writing GPS.” It’s a 12-step process when you start writing your next piece of content (it works for posts, e-books, site content, etc.).
Writing content is tough and sometimes you just have to do it and overcome writer's block – this book helps you do that and more.
I revisit this book often because I know as my writing continues to improve, so do business marketing skills. Read this book to take your writing to the next level.
#4. Web Copy That Sells: The Revolutionary Formula for Creating Killer Copy That Grabs Their Attention and Compels Them to Buy
Author: Maria Veloso
Skill Level: Intermediate
This book is akin to Everybody Writes, but with a copywriting focus. The author is a professional copywriter who worked for some of the biggest companies in the world.
Copywriting is one of the best skills that affiliate marketers can master – the best ones will tell you this. Maria’s book provides the best ways to write copy for content, email marketing, sales pages, and even blog posts.
I enjoyed reading this one (lots of notes).
#5. SEO 2020
Author: Adam Clarke
Skill Level: Beginner
Category: Google Traffic
I was hesitant to include an SEO book to this list, but you’re reading a best of book list article after all. Similar to writing an affiliate marketing book, writing a book on search engine optimization is hard because Google changes so frequently.
That said, this book is a good primer to the world of SEO and covers the fundamentals well. If you’re interested in making money blogging with your affiliate website, there’s good information and lessons you can take away from this book.
If you want to learn more about keyword research and affiliate marketing courses, see our resource section below.
#6. Ultimate Guide to Google AdWords: How to Access 100 Million People in 10 Minutes
Author: Perry Marshall
Skill Level: Intermediate-Advanced
Category: Google Advertising
The book teaches beginners to advanced readers the basics to advanced techniques of paying your way to the top of Google without losing a small fortune.
This relates to affiliate marketing because some affiliate marketing programs or networks allow you to bid (Google Ads is a “cost per click” platform) for their brand terms/keywords.
Note: Some affiliate programs do not let you bid for their brand keywords because it violates their trademark. In this regard, affiliates can still drive traffic to affiliate products, but with other keywords. Always read the affiliate program terms and conditions before promoting.
And, since Google owns YouTube, he covers YouTube Ads as well – which can certainly be used for affiliate marketing.
I read this book when I started my first side-hustle online business and it taught me core skills that allowed me get my first digital marketing job. You can avoid a lot of mistakes from the information you get in this book. I recommend this book if you have a budget for ad spend.
#7. Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook: How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World
Author: Gary Vaynerchuk
Skill Level: Beginner
Category: Marketing Plan
Gary Gary Gary… you made it on my list! I’m not the most active affiliate marketer on social media platforms, but if there’s a book that can help communicate effectively in that world, it’s this one.
As an affiliate, you can make money through social media sites if you know how to communicate with your target audience.
Gary Vee teaches you how to do this with his Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook philosophy. Essentially what Gary teaches is how to not always sell to your audience.
That worked for past business owners, but in this digital era, it no longer works. Nowadays, you have to provide value through engaging content multiple times (jabs) before you go for the sale (right hook).
This book has benefited me, as an affiliate, in the email marketing realm. It works well on social media platforms too.
#8. The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It
Author: Michael E. Gerber
Skill Level: Intermediate-Advanced
The E-Myth is one of the best books recommended by veteran business owners and with good reason.
I gave it a skill level of intermediate to Advanced because eventually, as an affiliate, you’ll need to delegate work to other people… that is if you want to scale your business.
In Michael’s book, he states that everybody who goes into business has 3 personalities: the Entrepreneur, the Manager, and the Technician.
These personalities are always in conflict because they know how to run the business the best. You can start to see how this gets messy.
In a nutshell, this book is about building processes and systems so you can work on your business and not in it.
As affiliate marketers, when we get started, we’re going to be doing everything, but eventually, you’ll reach a point where you’ve created a passive income stream, but if you want to grow it, you’re going to require help.
And that help is going to need a step-by-step guide on how to replicate you in your business.
#9. The War of Art
Author: Steven Pressfield
Skill Level: Beginner-Advanced
The last book on the list is a mindset book. I put it on the list because what a lot of affiliate marketers do when first starting is remaining in “research mode” and take no action.
Resistance is the focus topic of this book. It’s an invisible force that everyone who seeks achievement encounters, and it persists even after success.
You see, the harder something is to accomplish (ie. creating a six figure business and having passive income through affiliate websites), the more resistance there will be.
Writing 50+ articles for your website, with a 1,500+ word count, is a challenge. Growing an affiliate YouTube channel is equally as hard.
Reading this book is a great way to get your mind tuned in to reality and away from gurus that only tell you about how much money you can make with affiliate marketing.
Honorable Book Mentions
- Performance Partnerships by Robert G.
- Affiliate Program Management by Evgenii P.
- Work at Home: Secrets & Scams by J.C., creator of the Super Affiliate System
How to Get Started in Affiliate Marketing
As you saw, these aren’t exactly affiliate books. Instead, they’re books that focus on one topic that added together can help affiliate marketers grow their affiliate marketing empire. I like to think of them as pillars that support the affiliate marketing business model.
Affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to make money online (it's one of the best business models for beginners). Unlike network marketing, you can get started while staying indoors. And you don't have to worry about inventory with Amazon FBA.
After reading books, you might want to create an affiliate business or take your existing biz to the next level!
If you’d like further affiliate marketing resources, read our latest articles:
- How to Make Money With Affiliate Marketing for Beginners
- The Best Affiliate Marketing Courses On the Market (these courses teach you how to create an affiliate site with the Amazon affiliate program & other affiliate marketing platforms)
- What Does EPC Mean in Affiliate Marketing?
- 15 of the Best Marketing Books to Read in 2020
- The Best Autoresponders for Affiliate Marketing
If you have questions about book reviews, affiliate best practices, passive income side hustles, how to make money online promoting Clickbank products, affiliate programs, or social media, let me know!