As an affiliate marketer, I have be honest with you: Done for you systems in my experience are often hyped and difficult to trust.
What they sound like on the front end are often times very different than what you see on the back end and if you’re not careful, there are risks that you could lose a lot of money in this area.
In this post, I want to share everything you need to know about both affiliate marketing and done for you systems in regards to it to help you understand those risks and why it might be a much better idea (both financially and educationally) to build up an affiliate marketing business from scratch (with good help of course).
The appeal of done for you systems (with regards to affiliate marketing) explained:
While done for you systems and businesses exist in multiple fields, with regards to affiliate marketing, here is what you’ll typically see (and the message that is relayed):
Example 1: High ticket affiliate marketing done for you systems.
There have been many programs in this area coming out as of late and in my opinion a lot of them are quite shady but basically here is how they work:
1) You are pitched to buy a highly expensive “opportunity”. Typically it costs $1,000’s to even $10,000s to join.
2) You are told by buying into this opportunity that you can become an affiliate for it and earn 50% commissions ($500-$1,000s per sale).
3) You are also told the opportunity comes with a “done for you system” and all you have to do is buy into the program, and let the “team” do all the marketing, selling and closing.
4) You are also basically pitched how you don’t need a website, product and how simple it is (success stories are shown).
The basic message in these kinds of programs is that even though the price is high to join, it’s considered “OK” because the program and the done for you system takes the difficulty out of the equation and that everything else will be done for you once you join (easy ROI).
This is the sales pitch.
9 major risks of using these done for you affiliate systems:
1) In very rare circumstances are these done for you affiliate systems are ever as easy as they say, let alone legit (I do have rare cases where I recommend some of these).
2) Very often, once you buy into one of these systems, you are pitched even more “upsells” that are “requirements” to join. These are often pitched to you in a sneaky way and sold with messaging like “it’s optional” but they also make it sound like “it’s necessary”. Some of these upsells include: Websites, website hosting, Clickfunnels, and autoresponders (Things which are legit by the way and sometimes necessary, but pitched in ways I’m not a fan of).
3) A lot of these done for you systems offer low quality value in their products, but pitch it as though it’s buried treasure. Realistically though, you can likely find similar or better training outside the opportunity for low prices, and even free content (YouTube, PLR websites, and alternative programs).
4) Some of these systems operate as schemes, pyramid schemes or business models that places like the FTC frowns upon (and takes down).
5) One of the reasons why is because the value of the product/program is highly inflated vs what it should actually cost. For example: If you can find an affiliate marketing tutorial on Udemy for $10 and there is a high ticket program that is $5,000 teaching the same thing, but only offering the opportunity to make big sales promoting it, that could be a pyramid scheme.
6) A lot of these done for you systems are also gateways to even bigger ticket stuff down the line including coaching packages and more inflated costs to join. And yes there are people who go for that because they think the deeper they go into the program, the more they can make.
7) In terms of success numbers, the odds of that are not good. In any online business, I would say single digit people (Under 5%) ever succeed promoting such done for you systems. When the complaints stack up, the company vanishes and leaves a lot of people hanging dry financially (this is when the FTC steps in due to those complaints).
8) A lot of these companies also have you buy traffic inside their network through things like solo ads, or have you pay for pay per click ads on many different networks. This adds extra costs and without experience, you can lose a ton of money on this.
9) Debt. A lot of times people who read into “done for you systems” think the success is just around the corner with no risk, but because they can’t afford it, a lot of these companies help people take out loans they can’t pay back (only relying on the hope this opportunity pays them) and with low odds of success, many people lose everything.
Example 2: Done for you affiliate marketing niche sites.
Niche sites in my experience happen to be a great way to produce a healthy affiliate income and there are certain done for you systems in this realm which will hook you up with a “ready made website” in whatever niche you select.
Typically these done for you opportunities can cost several $1,000 to buy. The idea here is that the site is fully operational, can promote affiliate products and is in a profitable niche, which you just “take the reigns of”.
But like the first example, here are at least 4 risks involved with this type of done for you system:
1) If you have no experience in building, running and operating websites, you will have no clue “how to take the reigns” of this and you’ll still have to learn everything from scratch. And just sitting back and doing nothing for a “read made, or done for you website” is foolish because it’s never that easy.
2) You’ll need to at least learn how to promote affiliate products and be signed up with affiliate networks (and approved to promote products). If you don’t understand this process, again you’ll need to start from scratch.
3) Certain legit niche sites that get sold may cost you upwards of $10,000 or more. These also require basic maintenance.
4) There exist certain scam programs which duplicate “ready made” niche affiliate sites, sell them for $1,000’s and give you a duplicate page making you think that it will be profitable. Well if you know anything about duplicate content, you’ll know such sites will never get ranked on Google or get you organic traffic.
Total number of risks: 13 (for these 2 examples alone that is).
Conclusions: Done for you affiliate marketing systems are rarely as easy as they sound.
Whether it be done for you funnels or done for you niche sites, the fact is that without clear experience in how to operate such things, let alone market them, you are wasting your money on such things.
Related: See this post on premade affiliate sites.
In the end, the allure of “done for you” and imagining how simple it is if you just buy a ready made business for you is what gets people into trouble, and there are many predatory people and programs neglecting to tell you the truly serious risks involved with this, only because they are just trying to make money off you.
Having spent a lot of time in the affiliate marketing world, and spoken to many people who have fallen for these types of scams, I have seen this cycle play out the exact same way, every single time.
In rare instances will you ever be able to buy a done for you affiliate system, and succeed with it, and it will only come if the site comes with training on marketing it or you buy it with existing knowledge on such a subject. But to come in completely fresh and expect to succeed in a business that requires basic marketing and affiliate skills is what will land you into serious trouble.
A better option exists: Make your own done for you affiliate system from scratch.
A lot of people who like the sound and idea of done for you systems are often manipulated into thinking that the basic way of starting from scratch is too difficult, unnecessary and too hard to succeed with.
Well that’s sort of true, if of course you have no help, no guidance and no proper direction on what to do. Fortunately, since you’re reading this article, one of the best suggestions I have for beginners to affiliate marketing is to begin with Wealthy Affiliate, which happens to help you make niche websites from scratch.
It is much better to build such a business from nothing and gain that essential experience of the process because it will propel you forward and give you the experience or building, marketing and creating a real online income from scratch.
With that experience, I can almost guarantee you that once you have it, you will look at done for you affiliate systems the way I do now and avoid them in the future.