ShareASale Review

ShareASale is one of the biggest and most reputable affiliate networks in the world right now. It’s also one of the top recommended ones for bloggers and website owners who want to recommend physical products and services to their audience. 

Read our ShareASale review below to find out everything you should know about this platform, from the pros, cons, the requirements for affiliates, as well as what merchants you can expect to find. 

What is ShareASale?

There are two main ideal users for this platform – companies that want to make sure that their products are being recommended to potentially untapped audiences across the world and affiliates who want to diversify their incomes. 

ShareASale affiliate marketing is pretty straightforward in that the platform gives affiliates most of the tools they need in order to get started. They also provide them with detailed ShareASale analytics so that they can see and analyze their performance and earnings in the same place. 

The main difference between an affiliate program and an affiliate network (with the second being ShareASale, for example) is that programs are usually detained by a specific brand, so you can’t find other merchants on those platforms. 

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By contrast, you can use ShareASale to apply to several different programs and start recommending various products without having to go to the websites of those programs, sign up over there, and then manage your earnings on that site. 

Think of it this way: if you were to own 20 niche websites, all of which were based on physical products and you were to use different affiliate programs for each, you’d have to go daily or weekly to 20 different sites to see your performance, get paid, and everything else. 

If you use ShareASale, you’d only have to go to one place. 

Is ShareASale legit? The answer to this question is a clear yes. Fortunately, compared to other networks in pretty much the same niche, ShareASale hasn’t received any reviews according to which it’s scammy. The ShareASale products you’ll find here are also good-quality and the brands are pretty well-known, which makes the task of recommending them to your readers much easier. 

shareasale affiliate

How to become a ShareASale affiliate

Are ShareASale sign-up requirements a nuisance? We’d argue that they are not, especially when compared to the requirements you can expect with other affiliate networks. 

You will have to fill out a form with your name and personal information, create a username and a password, specify the country you are based in, and also note your main affiliate website. 

Someone from ShareASale is going to go on your website in a matter of several days or a week, so your website will be manually verified. It is also worth noting here that they do have certain requirements in terms of your content, so if you’re in controversial niches such as adult, you are not going to be able to use this affiliate network. 

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Once you’re done filling out the form with all of your information, you will be directed to a page where you should select your preferred method of payment. The downside to using ShareASale and becoming an affiliate of this network is that you will not be able to use PayPal.

However, given the wide array of financial services these days that give you access to checking accounts based in different countries across the globe, that might not even be considered a drawback. 

How quickly will your account be approved? Well, that depends on the day you join ShareASale. It usually takes about 24 to 48 hours, but if you’re joining on a Friday, expect to hear from someone by Tuesday or Wednesday as that would be more realistic. Even so, the approval process is faster compared to that of other networks. 

shareasale vs commision junction

How to make money with ShareASale

The first thing you have to do is look for merchants that you are actually interested in promoting to your audience. The affiliate programs are categorized depending on several different factors, such as the type of commission you can earn or the cookie length. 

You can play with the search menu a bit and categorize merchants based on whether they approve affiliates automatically or there is a waiting period, for example. There’s also the option of you selecting a threshold in terms of the EPC or commission rate. 

Once you have made a list of brands you’ve applied to or gotten approved immediately based on their requirements, you can start creating affiliate links. The platform is truly easy in this sense in that all you have to do is to go to the top navigation menu and click on links. There, you will be able to either get a link or a banner depending on what the brand can offer you. 

shareasale affiliate commision rate

The whole experience is very straightforward and the platform is much easier to use compared to others. 

Since the commission rates and the cookie durations depend on every brand, it’s difficult to make any assumption as to how much money you can make with ShareASale. This number obviously also depends on the amount of traffic you get on your blog or website and the number of conversions. 

Read more: ClickFunnels Affiliate Program Review

As for how you can specifically make money on this platform, there are two main ways: 

  • Pay per lead
  • Pay per sale

The first will bring you a commission each time someone clicks on one of your affiliate links, whether they continue and actually order something or not. However, most of the time, they do have to fill out a form in order for you to be eligible for the commission. 

Pay per sale is clearer in a way, in that you will only earn a commission when someone clicks on the affiliate link and then makes a purchase. But lots of affiliates feel like this is a more straightforward way of earning since there’s no guesswork about what people did after clicking. 

shareasale affiliate marketing

ShareASale Payments

How does ShareASale pay you? We’ve previously noted that there is no possibility of you getting paid through PayPal, which can be a drawback for some people. 

However, as much as PayPal might be convenient and easy to use, there are lots of other ways to get paid — direct deposit, mail cheques, and Payoneer are the main ways. 

Read more: Best web hosting affiliate programs

What we do have to mention with regards to payments is that the minimum threshold is $50, which is pretty decent. There is a waiting period of 30 days, which means that if you will receive your December earnings on the 20th of February, for example. 

If you come across any problems whatsoever with payments, feel free to ask customer service to assist you. Sometimes, some vendors or brands might not have credited their accounts, but ShareASale will recover your commissions, so you will still be paid sooner or later. 

shareasale affiliate program

Any reasons why you should not become a ShareASale affiliate?

We did come across several complaints online from affiliates who feel that the platform could be improved in many different ways. 

For one, the affiliate links don’t seem to work too well with WordPress, specifically those that contain an “&” as the content management system automatically changes them. Some people find that they can’t see analytics for some of these links, which can be quite frustrating. 

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Also, if one of the vendors suddenly becomes unavailable or they decide to terminate their affiliate program, there’s no way of you knowing this. The only way of telling this would be for you to look at your stats and see that you’re not getting any commissions any longer from that specific brand. Many affiliates feel that an automatic message for all of the discontinued affiliate programs should be sent out by ShareASale so that people know that they have to change their content and affiliate links. 

We’ve also stumbled upon several complaints regarding the customer service offered by this affiliate network. Unfortunately, this is also the result of the platform becoming so huge that it’s practically impossible these days for everyone to get the best customer support ever. 

shareasale affiliates

Reasons to join ShareASale

First of all, the approval process is not complicated, especially when compared to that of other networks. There are many brands available on the platform, which gives you the freedom to pick the best one that you think would suit your specific blog audience. 

On top of that, the platform is very user-friendly and you’re not going to experience any technical mishaps. Creating affiliate links and using banners is very easy and the analytics are also easy to understand. 

There are also many merchants that auto-approve their affiliates, so you can get started right after your account was approved by ShareASale. 

shareasale publishers

What ShareASale merchants can you promote?

There are several thousand brands on the platform right now, which means that you are not going to suffer from a shortage of what you can recommend to your blog readers. 

You have everything from home and decor products to fashion and many more items. There’s also the possibility of you recommending business products and services. 

Read more: Best pay per lead affiliate programs

The search bar is pretty effective, so you can simply look for a specific niche (the one that interests you and the one your website is built around) and then have a look at what shows up on the screen. 

For example, if you are in the fashion niche, you can opt for one of the hundreds of merchants available, but there are some that are quite well-known, such as Spanx, Reebok, or Zaful.

Of course, the commission rates on all of these programs are different. The average commission rate you can expect on beauty and home decor is 7-8%, but it very much depends on the specific merchant. The cookie duration also depends on each brand. 

shareasale analytics

ShareASale vs. ClickBank

We have put together a detailed review of ClickBank in another article, so we suggest that you give it a read if you have the time. 

While both platforms are pretty easy to use and they both have many vendors, we’d say that ShareASale is more aimed toward affiliates that want to promote physical products whereas ClickBank is geared toward people who want to promote both physical and digital products. In fact, these days, ClickBank is the way to go if you’re in the digital service/product niche. 

There’s also a significant drawback to ClickBank and it’s that there are lots of spammy sellers. You will have to spend a lot of time on the platform to try and separate the wheat from the chaff. 

shareasale merchants

ShareASale vs. Commission Junction (CJ Affiliate)

CJ Affiliate is probably the biggest competitor that ShareASale has these days and that’s because the network is just as trustworthy, offers good support, and also works with some of the best-known brands out there. 

On the other hand, CJ Affiliate will suspend your account if you do not generate a sale within the first 180 days after being approved. 

Another drawback of this ShareASale alternative would have to be that CJ Affiliate is much more difficult to use. While the platform does offer you all the information you need, it’s also quite clunky and if you are not a seasoned affiliate marketer, you might find it anything but user-friendly. 

amazon associates

ShareASale vs. Amazon Associates

As weird as it might sound, we’d say that ShareASale is better than Amazon Associates in pretty much every possible way. First of all, Amazon slashed its commissions several years ago and they’re probably going to do the same in about 5-6 years or so. 

Secondly, the cookie length of any affiliate link click is 24 hours on Amazon, which is extremely low. And while the average commission rate you can expect is about 2-3%, the average one on ShareASale is 7-8%. Naturally, it also depends on the niche, but we’d say that Amazon Affiliates is just not worth it these days. 

It could be an option if you don’t want to put all of your eggs in one basket, but there’s another drawback that we have to note here. 

For example, if you want to use Amazon’s API to promote products (which you need to be able to use affiliate marketing plugins like AMZImage or any plugin for tables pulled from Amazon), you are not allowed to monetize your site through any other networks or programs. 

That means that you can’t use ShareASale affiliate links anywhere else on your website if you also use Amazon’s API.

Conclusion

So, is the ShareASale affiliate program worth it or not? You are the only person that can answer that question, but we’d say that it is. It’s legit, it works with many quality brands, and you aren’t going to find any weird products on the platform, either. 

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Craig Campbell

I am a Glasgow based SEO expert who has been doing SEO for 18 years.

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