In this review, I discuss the pros and cons of joining Wealthy Affiliate [WA], including the 6-month free vs. premium membership and main services and benefits. This information is based on my own experience as a current and long-time member.
Does WA teach a viable online business model that works in 2019, and will it continue to work into the future? You will know the answer by the time you read this review.
Wealthy Affiliate Opened in 2005
Today Wealthy Affiliate is an active global affiliate business training, education and resource platform.
My rating: Rating: (5 / 5)
If your goal is to learn how to make legitimate income online through your own website, this may be the right platform for you.
If you are searching for a place where you can get started free to learn how to create income online, you’ve found it. But there is some serious learning to do first.
Getting Started Course
The training starts with free lessons on the ‘how to’ of affiliate marketing for beginners. They give you tools, including free hosting, and teach you how to set up your own website. Sure, it’s going to be a beginner website, but this is a great way to get rolling at no cost and no risk.
Watch my video here as I create a website in a few minutes.
For anyone expecting fast money, forget it. For anyone willing to learn how to generate income from the internet, it is worth a closer look.
What Is The Best Way To Make Money Online
The answer is simple: learn the ropes! That’s what the Wealthy Affiliate training platform is all about.
Trying to create income online by yourself can be overwhelming at times. I have seen firsthand spectacular successes, modest ones, and some not at all.
It is easy to spot the pattern. Those who fail start out with unrealistic expectations and want fast money. They tend to quit the moment they realize it won’t happen fast.
Wealthy Affiliate is not a biz op; it is not a get rich quick scheme; it is an education and community platform. Members are encouraged to build a website based on their own interests or passions.
In a nutshell, WA teaches a 4-step process to reach success:
- Choose an interest
- Build a website
- Attract visitor traffic
- Earn Revenue
Will you make money?
People from all walks of life share their successes. You will see members post titles such as “Made 13 Laptop Sales This Month”, “$10K Per Month in 3 years”, “made 257 Amazon sales overnight”, “How I Earned $740 Thinking Outside the Box” and so on.
Members credit WA for teaching them success, proving that the business model as taught works for those who apply what they learn.
Some members report on each step of their journey, while others share how they achieved long term success.
The real question is: Will you be one of them?
The time it takes to create income in the online space varies with the individual. The first 3 months of training focuses on laying a strong foundation for your business.
A few new members arrive with faulty notions of making easy money. Co-Founder Kyle explains: “you cannot expect to build a skyscraper on a muddy foundation”.
WA gives you the knowledge and support every step of the way. Success is up to you. The reward comes when you use what you learn to turn your goals into a thriving business in any niche of your choice. The WA affiliate program is an optional income stream. There is no requirement to become an Affiliate of WA.
…Live Chat, Live Classes, Live Interaction, and Live Expert Help are all big components of your educational experience at Wealthy Affiliate.
– cited from the Wealthy Affiliate Education Page
You can also work from the archived libraries of educational webinars and tutorials. It is entirely up to you.
Main Services And Benefits
The course includes step by step training in affiliate marketing, website creation, keywords, search engine optimization, social media and internet marketing topics. Fast help can be found in the community, including live chat. Suitable for total beginners and experienced marketers.
The community interacts on a social and education basis where like-minded people are building a better future for themselves and their loved ones. Activities include using the website and comment feedback systems, asking and answering questions, 24/7chat, private messaging, posting and commenting on community blogs.
Hosting & Tools
Site builder, Jaaxy keyword tool, image library, site content facility for writing and publishing content to your website, free state of art hosting, free SSL certificates, buy and register Domains, and Premium support.
The affiliate program is entirely optional. Starter free members can earn commissions for up to 6 months at half the rate of Premium members. All members have the option to monetize their websites in any affiliate niche of their choice.
Click on blue button to view full details of Starter vs Premium benefits
Is This For You?
The platform is suitable for people wanting to learn how to create an online business. It caters to beginners and advanced. They also teach how to take an existing business to the next level. All training is in English.
If you enjoy helping others, you will enjoy participating in the community. If you need help, the community is there to lend you a hand. Post a question and you will likely receive an answer in a few minutes.
If the goal is to build an income producing website, this is for you. If progress until now has left you wanting more, this could be your solution.
By the time you finish the free training, you will have a new website up. You will have a plan of action for what you need to do to make money with it.
If you are serious and want to go the distance in your business, at some point you will want to consider going Premium.
I want to be totally transparent: The scope of training and support in the free membership is limited. The Starter program is to help members do exactly that, get started. However, the premium support is reliable and prompt. Premium members have access to the community and chat 24/7 – there is always someone around who can help, often within a few minutes.
The platform is an interactive hub for teaching and learning. The core training focuses on how to build an income website. It starts with learning how to:
- Build a niche website
- Add valuable content
- Build traffic
- Learn keyword marketing
- Monetize the site for income
Live Weekly Webinar Classes
Premium members have access to a live weekly video class. These are also available from the archive. Those of us who follow Jay’s training (he is the official WA trainer, username: magistudios) would agree that his golden nuggets of knowledge are invaluable and not to be missed.
If you can follow directions, be consistent and take action, you can succeed. People who quit as soon as they hit a bump in the road will not succeed. Those who use failures as lessons for success can and will make it.
If you expect to make fast money, this is not for you. If you want to build a sustainable long term business, you will need to follow the training and take action.
Introducing The Owners
Co-owners Carson and Kyle started their partnership in 2005 after graduating from college. They shared a common interest in internet marketing and business development.
Each successful, they realized they could do more by joining forces. Wealthy Affiliate was born! Under their creative vision, the site has continued to prosper and grow. They continue to add value, quality services and reliable support.
The Open Education Project, as they like to call it, has evolved over the years. It has become a thriving community and training facility. Anyone seeking to start and build a successful online business can benefit.
Distractions In An Open Education Community
No program or service is perfect. If it were, everyone would be in it and there would be nowhere else to go. Learning and mastering new skills can be overwhelming.
No one is holding a big stick over anyone to do anything. It is important to work at one’s own pace and comfort level.
Participation can be fun and informative but also distracting. Effective time management is necessary.
Free vs Premium – What Is The Real Cost
I am comfortable with recommending this training and education platform to my family and close friends. It is free to join and get started, (except for a few countries where only Premium accounts are available).
New members have access to Premium benefits during the first 7 days, after which if not upgraded, the account reverts to the free Starter level. One can stay a free member for 6 months.
Upgrading is optional during this 6-month period. Members who want more may decide to go Premium within the first week. Others stay on at the Starter level with ongoing access to the free parts of the platform. That includes 2 websites and free hosting, plus 1,000+ tutorials prepared by members.
For members who stay on the free Starter membership after the 7-day Premium trial, before the first 6 month period elapses, it will be time to decide whether to continue and upgrade or not. Six months is enough time to discover if this is right for you. After 6 months, the websites of free members are removed and the membership is deactivated. However, anyone can return, log in and upgrade to Premium at a later time.
The first month’s Premium payment has a discount – $19 instead of $49 – when taken up within the first 7 days
The annual membership is $359 – a big savings compared to the monthly rate. One can upgrade to a yearly subscription at any time with credit given for the payments made up to that point.
A common question is “Can I start free and make money to upgrade to Premium”? Yes! You can earn while you learn. Free members can create 2 websites to start their online business journey. View the Free vs Premium Comparison Chart.
Will There Be Added Costs?
A private message system is available for premium members, but it is for internal use only.
WA does not supply an autoresponder tool for external email list building.
However, training is available and both free and paid services are well discussed in the community.
Another potential expense is advertising, which can burn a hole in the budget in the blink of an eye. The training focuses on free methods. These include organic search engine ranking, quality content building and social media sharing.
Premium membership includes hosting for 25 owned domains plus 25 free Siterubix sites.
For Premium members, having an owned domain is optional, though recommended.
Domain names are available to buy directly from WA Site Domains or from any other Domain Registrar of your choice.
The cost to buy a registered domain through WA is $13.99 US and includes privacy protection and more.
Unlike at other domain registrars, they do not increase the renewal price. You can expect the same price for as long as you own your domain.
The chart compares the cost of WA domain purchases with three other registrars:
Summary of Pros and Cons
- WA is a spam-free, safe environment. No hype.
- Free hosting is included. Premiums get a lot more.
- You choose what direction to take your business.
- One upgrade offer. Won’t be bugged with up-sells.
- Continuously updated and comprehensive training.
- Potential to earn while you learn, create and grow.
- Time to see if it is right for you; 7 days free Premium
- If you don’t like learning, this may not be your thing.
- Information overload is possible but you have total control.
- Free members cannot host owned domains.
- Engaging in the community is fun but can be distracting.
- Premiums cannot downgrade or revert to free, but can pause account.
- Free members cannot access Premium content after initial 7 days.
Why I Have Stuck Around
People sometimes ask why I continue my membership. “You must have done all the training by now”, one person said. The answer is simple. One can never run out of learning. The site is updated daily with new content and provides a safe and scam-free environment. Plus the 24-hour support and networking is priceless for anyone who is marketing online.
Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.― Henry Ford
There are no “shortcuts to the learning curve” for creating income online. The internet landscape is ever changing. New affiliate marketers will use the latest technologies and marketing methods.
The owners have their finger on the pulse with what is working today and what will work tomorrow. I participate regularly in the community and classrooms to help new members. This enables me to witness directly that the owners operate WA with fairness and integrity.
As with most online services, you can find negative reviews and naysayers, mostly from competitors or people who have never truly tried the full paid service, or people who judge success by a different standard than yours. It’s a fact of life on the world wide web. In these days of ‘fake’ news, my response is this: Anyone can join and stay free for as long as they wish and reach their own conclusions.
The platform is well organized. Thousands of members are active in the community. Despite the high volume of daily activity, the site runs like a well-oiled machine. This is no small feat. More than 1 million members, and counting, have walked through the doors since 2005.
If your goal is to start and grow your online business, Wealthy Affiliate will take you the distance. All you need is a computer and an internet connection and be able to follow and act upon the training. Our community and I will be there to assist you.
Click on the image and join us today!
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