14 Top Reasons People Fail to Make Money Online

Many internet and affiliate marketers are doomed from the start to fail because they didn’t have the right training. Some have been given false hope of becoming millionaires with get-rich-fast schemes and told they don’t have to work hard. There are many reasons why people fail to make money online.

First, if you’re not familiar with what affiliate marketing is about, here’s an excellent video to watch…

That’s the beauty of affiliate marketing. All you do is promote someone else’s products and when your visitors make a purchase you earn the commissions.

I know it sounds so easy but there are many ways of doing affiliate marketing the wrong way and it can not only waste a lot of your valuable time but you can lose a lot of money too.

I’ll give you 14 top common mistakes affiliate marketers do and what you can do to avoid them with my #1 recommendation.

Reasons Why People Fail to Make Sustainable Money Online

1. The Belief of Becoming Rich Fast

Many people believe they can make big money fast when they get into affiliate marketing but this is definitely not the case. Oh, you’ll definitely make some money but it won’t be long-term.

Affiliate marketing means having a website. This means your website is a business and needs to be treated as a real business. It takes time to build trust in the internet world.

Too many people don’t take their online business seriously. They start looking on the internet for the “get-rich” shiny button. If you join an online affiliate marketing training platform that only teaches paid ads and the already done for you sales funnels, you are totally missing out on the real basic fundamentals of affiliate marketing. 

Trust me, if you are like those people your business is doomed for failure. Here’s an interesting article on the ethical and unethical side to affiliate marketing, CLICK HERE to read it. 

Take the right attitude and start from the bottom up. Sure it’s going to take a while before you start earning a steady income but wouldn’t you prefer to learn the right way?

2. Don’t Have to Work Hard

Lazy business man

As I mentioned, affiliate marketing is a real online business. Even though you have no inventory to carry, you are marketing someone else’s products and or services.

Ask any successful online affiliate marketer what they did and they will always tell you they worked hard, meaning they started from the bottom and worked their way to the top. They took the time to learn the right way on how to make money online without shortcuts. 

There’s this rule, an important one and I’m sure you heard of it “You only get as much out of life as you put into it”. What does this mean? If something is worthwhile, oftentimes it’s not easy to get it. There is no point in rushing and taking shortcuts like getting someone else to do the hard work for you. 

If you want to be successful in life and in your online business… you have to work harder than other people. 

Just so you know, to be accepted into an owner’s affiliate program means you must have proof you have a professional-looking website with traffic coming in. The owners and CEOs of those companies will want to know you can represent them with respect and have authority in their product knowledge. This means working hard. 

3. Too Salesy

Have you had the feeling sometimes when you go shopping, you’re being pushed into buying something when all you want to do is look around? 

No one, even online when they start reading your blog post wants to be bombarded with a bunch of irrelevant paid ads popping up everywhere. They’re distracting. Your content becomes annoying to read and puts stress on the reader leaving them to feel like they need to purchase.

Doesn’t it make you feel like maybe they don’t really care about helping you and that they only want your money?

Focus your time on helping your readers by providing them with valid solutions on your blogs.

4. More Than 2 Websites

Do you have more than 2 websites and you’re not doing well on either of them?

You can have as many websites you like BUT what’s the point if you can’t effectively manage your time with each one? Are you writing consist quality content that’s helpful to your readers on both sites? You might be spreading yourself too thin.

If you’re a beginner and still learning the basic fundamentals of affiliate marketing and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) I can tell you from experience it’s much easier to focus on 1 website and the training. That way you can duplicate your success instead of your mistakes.

My suggestion is to work on 1 site and get a steady stream of traffic and income consistently every month, then start up another site. This may take a while to broaden your horizon so be patient. 

5. Not Keeping up to Google Trends and Rules

Google is forever changing its algorithms for SEO, trends and rules that could drastically affect your current business activity. Remember Google is not happy when you break their rules and they could possibly even ban you.

One example of being banned is not creating original content. In other words, these are people who use software to create their blog post automatically on their site. This method comes as not making any sense to the reader and generates a high bounce rate meaning the reader doesn’t stay long enough to read your other pages.

It’s vital to have the readers stay and read more of your posts. Google loves it when your visitors are engaged. 

One of the best ways to keep on top of what Google is doing is to join an affiliate support community or forum and relevant social media.

6. Giving Up, As in Quitting

I Give Up!

Often times, many affiliate marketers just plain give up. When they join, it’s because it’s free and they think it’s really easy to make their business profitable. They soon realize it’s going to take a long time before they can even make their first sale because they have a lot of stuff to learn and do.

Affiliate marketing is not a get rich fast scheme. It could take you 5 months, a year, 2 years or longer to make a decent amount of money long-term and it really depends on how hard you’re willing to work, your commitment, perseverance, and patience on your online business.

If you feel like quitting, my recommendation is to join a relevant large support community to help you learn and grow your business at your own pace AND to accept the hard work required.

Imagine if you quit what you would have accomplished in 2 or 3 years…

7. Wrong Niche Market

Not having a niche market that is something you are passionate about is already doomed for failure. It’s challenging to do something you really don’t want to do. This can cause you to easily lose interest and not put any effort into your online business. It’s also very difficult to help your readers solve their needs when your heart is not in it.

Pick a niche you’re really passionate about doing, something you can’t stop talking about to your friends and family. If there is something you have always been interested in but know nothing about, that’s ok because as you learn, you become an authority at it and that can be your great niche.

If you want to learn more about how to choose your niche, CLICK HERE.

8. Learning The Wrong Way – Misinformed 

Too many people think that the best way to make money with affiliate marketing when they first start is to get their training from sites that have done most of the work for you. In fact, there are some of these sites that even look after your emails that come from your subscribers. They will even answer them for you. Yep, you only have to put in a couple of hours of work each day. Sounds great!!

Wrong! The only thing you’ll learn is how to do paid ads from those sites which can be very expensive, hundreds to thousands of dollars if you don’t know what you’re doing. This is advanced stuff! Affiliate marketing is not JUST about PAID Ads.

There are many things to learn about when having any type of online business. For instance, you need to have an understanding of customer perspectives like the stages of when the purchase is made.

Knowing how to brand yourself so your audience will engage and trust you is important as well as learning all about SEO (search engine optimization) to generate FREE TRAFFIC to your own website. 

Are you using Google Analytics and Search Console?  Are you using social media and YouTube?

There are a plethora of things to learn and it might sound scary especially if you are new to the internet world.

Learning about everything you need to know about becoming a successful online affiliate marketer is a lot of fun when you learn the right way and it’s not scary at all when you’re with other like-minded folks.

My advice is to find a reputable online internet and affiliate marketing teaching platform with a large community of friendly people that can help you 24/7. If you can find a transparent site where you can actually see what questions beginners and advanced marketers are asking and see the responses, trust me that platform is invaluable.

Can't Find One? Click Here! It's FREE to Join as a Starter Member, No Risk!

9. No Keyword Research – Wrong Keywords

There are more than 2 billion people buying products/services online and with this comes the competitors in your business.

You can write thousands of blog posts but if you are not using the right keywords, then they’re all a waste because no one will find them in their search engines.

Keywords are what people enter into the search browser when they look for something that could offer solutions to their needs. These are the keywords you want but you still can’t start writing content around them because the keywords can be used by hundreds of your competitors.

For example, let’s use a popular keyword phrase “how to make money online”. That keyword is too broad.  If you look at the image below, you will see 69,244 under AVG, this is the average number of monthly searches on the keyword and the 199 which is too high (QSR – Quoted Search Research) is the number of competitor websites ranked in Google on the keyword.  

Traffic means the potential numbers of visits to your website once you’re on Google’s first page. The KQI (Keyword Quality Indicator) is telling you it’s Normal in yellow and indicates the quality of your keyword. You want it to be green. 

Jaaxy keyword how to make money online

The Low Hanging Keyword Research Rule

The rule I like to use is 100+/100-. You want to look for a relevant keyword phrase that has over 100 monthly average traffic (AVG) and under 100 website competitors (QSR).

If you look at the next screenshot below, you’ll see “how to make money online by writing articles”. This is an excellent keyword phrase if your website is relevant to that. You can definitely write content around it and get it ranking in Google.

Jaaxy how to make money online by writing articles

Can you outdo your competitors? You definitely can and it’s a matter of being smarter than they are. Your competitors are already using keyword research tools to help them find the right keywords for their blogs.  You just need to learn the techniques.

Jaaxy Keyword Research Tool is my #1 recommendation and if you like you can try it here for FREE, CLICK HERE!

10. No Brand – No Trust

The best way to bring traffic to your site is to establish your brand. Do you have a logo? This is a great way for people to remember your website. It also makes you and your website look professional and helps you personally to want to feel good about your online business. When you’re proud of your website, you’ll feel great pride and want to work harder.  

How does your website look? Is it full of junky unrelated advertisements with a bunch of annoying pop-ups?

Your goal with your website is to give your readers a great experience that they will always want to come back to and get more information. You want them to trust you. You want to help them.

Are you establishing good relationships with your visitors? It’s important to respond as quickly as possible when you receive comments and questions.

I always like to be the last to respond.

11. Website Not Indexed

Anytime you write new blog posts or make changes to existing blogs, it’s a good idea to let Google know and let them crawl thru your website so it can understand what it’s all about. They apply their algorithms looking for stuff they like and don’t like.

If your content is original and quality material it will be indexed and that is excellent news for you.

I suggest you use Google’s Search Console to help get your site indexed.

12. Lack of Support – The Feeling of Being Alone

When you believe in something so strong, you make sacrifices which affects your friends and family.  Unfortunately, that’s what successful business people do but they come up with a balance. The balance is support. When you get help and encouragement, this reduces stress giving you time to spend with your loved ones.

You might not even get support from your friends and family members. They don’t believe you can do this and they question you and so there is a feeling of being intimidated.

When you have that feeling of being alone and unsupported by your loved ones because of your online business, it’s extremely challenging to stay focused and have the desire and motivation to work hard.

I’m in a friendly community of over 1.4 million people from all over the world who do what I do which is affiliate marketing.  My #1 recommendation is Wealthy Affiliate and I’m proud to say they have the best support 24/7 in the internet world when it comes to learning how to build your online affiliate marketing business successfully. Members are encouraged to ask questions and help other members.

CLICK HERE - FREE Guide to Affiliate Marketing (Learn the right way)

Find a platform where you can get encouragement when you feel like you’re struggling and just need that extra push to get you through the day. Everyone works hard together when they’re in a place where they can see lots of human activity going on and members giving encouragement.

13. Fear of Writing – Content is King

This is me. I believed I was not a writer and writing a blog post would literally take a week to complete. Even trying to figure out what to write about was an absolute nightmare because it seemed impossible that good content could be created from my mind.

Stop thinking like that!

The truth is you can write. If you can talk to your friends and family members and strangers you meet who cross your path, you go to the grocery store and talk to the cashier, you can definitely write. You talk to people in social media, right?

You see, the success of writing quality content is all about being able to write conversationally. You are simply having a conversation with your readers. That’s all you have to do.

YOU CAN WRITE and you don’t need to be a “writer” AND you don’t need to be perfect other than you should know how to spell. If you’re not a great speller no worries use Grammarly, it’s FREE. 

14. Not Using Social Media – Lose Lots of Traffic

Did you know there are 3.484 active billion social media users so far in 2019 according to Smart Insights. Wouldn’t you want a piece of that traffic?  

We live in a social media world. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, Instagram and Linkedin. By the way, your competitors are hanging out there too so why not get some of that traffic for your online business.

No Traffic = No Sales

Some of you may not like social media, but if you want more traffic, this is the perfect place to be and it will you outside your comfort box. There are tools you can use to even schedule your blogs to publish on social media of your choice giving you time to focus on other areas of your business.

A couple of advice is DO NOT OVER PUBLISH your blogs to social media to the point your followers will unfollow you. READ AND FOLLOW the rules of whatever social media you decide to use.

My Thoughts and Recommendations

There are many benefits to being an affiliate marketer. The fact that you don’t have to carry inventory is why this is the fastest growing industry in the world. 

I read somewhere that more brand companies are realizing the value to having an affiliate program because not only are their competitors offering this, it’s an easy way for them to make money and increase their traffic.

We as affiliate marketers have this great opportunity to have an online business anywhere in the world as long as we have a computer and internet. This is what we dream about, we want to be our own boss and make great income.

Do you have the following attributes of a successful online affiliate marketer?

  • Consistency
  • Not afraid to work hard
  • Desire to learn more, gain knowledge from authorities
  • Persistence
  • Does not give up

If you have these, you are already on the road to success.

So how would you like to not fail and learn the right way to having your very own successful online affiliate marketing business in any niche your heart desires?

CLICK HERE - Ultimate Guide To Affiliate Marketing For Beginners

Hey Folks, 

Thanks for reading this article and I hope it was helpful.  What mistakes have you made and how did you overcome them? I hope you will share them here.

If you have any questions or comments, it would be awesome to hear from you.



6 thoughts on “14 Top Reasons People Fail to Make Money Online”

  1. I must say I’m impressed with the way you have given a detailed explanation in this post. Every point in this post can pose a serious threat to one’s success and have been the reasons most people are not successful. Starting, for instance, I do not see a reason why someone who wants to make money would ever quit from an opportunity to make money. A really nice post you’ve put up here. I would urge everyone to read it and also copy the traits a successful person must have. Thanks for your time 

  2. I couldn’t agree less with you concerning the information made available on this article. Most people tend to fail when it cones to making money because of their expectations of becoming a millionaire overnight with limited work. Online business requires months and years to build, just like the proper brick and wall businesses. Most also fail in seeing this as a business but rather, see it as a hobby that they can just do at their leisure period. I am sure this would help quite a lot of  people online and I will definitely share it out.

    • Hi Tracy,

      You’re absolutely right people don’t take their business seriously enough. Many think that because it’s an online business they don’t have to work hard. The truth is whether it’s online or local business, it’s still hard work and sacrifices must be made.

      Thanks for your comment.


  3. There is nothing as time-wasting as picking a niche that one does not have a personal interest in and as such, there would be no passion or drive to go through the difficult periods. Quitting would be very easy because one does not feel any emotional attachment with the work. Another point I found a very spot-on is the belief that one can become wealthy within a very short time and therefore, there’s no place for patience in building the business. To be honest, this is excellent stuff on the major reasons most people fail at building their business online.

    • Hi,

      Thank you for your comment. I had a website on a passionate niche a few years ago, so I thought. I wasted a lot of time on my first website … it was fun at first then about 6 months into it I just got bored with that niche. I actually did quit.

      With proper training thru Wealthy Affiliate, they teach you how to choose your niche the right way so you will always be proud of your site and never stop talking about it.



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