How Affiliate Marketing Is Different From Network Marketing

As a newbie, you might have trouble knowing how affiliate marketing is different from network marketing. When considering the difference between the two, it’s an excellent idea to weigh out the advantages and disadvantages of each sort of marketing system.

In network marketing, you focus on developing your team through people that are personally recruited by you. With affiliate marketing, there is no need to recruit anybody but yourself as a private entrepreneur due to the fact that commission rates are based entirely on sales made from services or products sold via web pages created by affiliates themselves.

And in this article, I will be helping you to learn more about each marketing model, how affiliate marketing is different from network marketing, and which one of the two is better, so keep on reading…

how is affiliate marketing different from network marketing


What Is The Difference Between Affiliate Marketing And Network Marketing?

The difference is that affiliate marketing is a sales design that utilizes affiliates to increase services or product awareness using online platforms and earn a commission from sales or leads made.

On the other hand, network marketing refers to a service design based on person-to-person sales by a network of distributors. It involves systemic methods including recruiting, list building and management.

Although both marketing methods do not require complex marketing infrastructure, affiliate marketing compensates affiliates using money payments while network marketers benefit by taking pleasure in the sale of items at heavily discounted prices.

With these basics covered, let’s take a look at affiliate marketing vs network marketing in some more detail.

What Is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing is classified under performance-based marketing. Affiliate marketing is the act of pursuing commissions from items that you “affiliate” yourself with. It normally consists of single-level commissions, meaning you will make a specific quantity of an item’s sales that your consumer purchases.

Affiliate Marketer


  • You choose the products you want to sell
  • You only take care of the marketing aspect of a business
  • It has low risks since there are no joining costs
  • Most affiliate programs are free to join
  • You earn passive income through the leads generated
  • It offers you the flexibility of working from anywhere


  • You’re responsible for finding products that sell
  • There are many scams and low-quality programs
  • Driving enough traffic to your website or social network can take time
  • It is highly competitive since most affiliates promote similar products

Popular Affiliate Marketing Programs

  • Amazon Associates
  • eBay Affiliates
  • CJ Affiliates
  • ClickBank
  • ShareASale

What Is Network Marketing?

In network marketing, the revenue is gathered from the salespersons selling the business product. This is a business design based on person-to-person sales by a network of distributors. It entails systemic techniques including recruiting, list building and management. Rather than dispersing the products to shops, these marketing approaches rely on a network of distributors.

Network Marketer


  • It gives you an opportunity to enjoy residual income
  • It is cost-effective as no formal marketing infrastructure is required
  • If you are a good salesperson, you can earn lots of money
  • You don’t have to do product or market research


  • If you’re not good at recruiting people, it’s difficult to succeed in MLM
  • You often have to pay an introductory fee to join an MLM program
  • It makes it difficult to forecast sales
  • It’s difficult to sell an MLM product

Popular Network Marketing Programs

So, How Is Affiliate Marketing Different From Network Marketing?

Affiliate programs are easy to promote using social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Emails, Blogs, Instagram, Websites, and YouTube. Use the content for your leverage and put the referral link in it. The customers can purchase products using your link, and you will get a commission.

For a Network program, one has to network in the real-world (not the virtual world) to build a business-based relationship. This relationship (leads) is then converted to make them into potential customers.

In business terms, affiliate marketing has no other names whereas network marketing is likewise called multi-level marketing or pyramid marketing. Affiliate marketing is designated as a legal marketing method whereas multi-level marketing is often described as an illegal plan or strategy.

Another distinction between affiliate marketing vs. network marketing is that, with an MLM, you’ll usually lose cash. An MLM is set up so that only the individual at the top of the pyramid can make any real money.

In other words, the money MLMs create often goes singularly to the top. So while you’ll be told that you’re an “employer” and in charge of your own earnings, the truth is that the cash network marketing companies generally offer is only a false promise at its finest.

That’s a significant distinction between affiliate marketing vs. network marketing. But one can say that they are awfully similar as well. Let’s see how these businesses are the same…

So, How Is Affiliate Marketing Similar To Network Marketing?

Essentially, the only similarity between affiliate and network marketing is that you are promoting other people’s products and earning commissions for doing so. As stated above, everything else is quite different.

Affiliate Marketing vs Network Marketing

Both business models can make you rich if you know what you are doing, have the necessary skills, and are ready to work hard in order to achieve your goals and become a successful marketer,

Which Is Better, Affiliate Marketing Or Network Marketing?

If you wish to start generating income from promoting services and products that you actually care about, affiliate marketing is a simpler and more satisfying path to monetary gains. This is why affiliate marketing is better than network marketing. With affiliate marketing, you have the potential to earn money and also help people find products that you really appreciate.

Therefore, affiliate marketing comes out on top. As long as you have your own site or sales network, joining an affiliate program is simple. Most regularly accept new members and aspire to have fresh faces promoting their products and services.

With network marketing, you often have to buy in to start offering. You can’t start generating income till you acquire a starter kit, and you’ll have to fulfil a minimum sales amount to stay active in the network.

Although this can easily go both ways, with affiliate marketing vs. network marketing, you technically do not need to have any type of experience with services or products. You likewise do not need to hang on to any stock.

While network marketing requires new distributors to become personally acquainted with the brand, with affiliate marketing, you could easily find out everything you require to know by browsing a product’s website.

In network marketing, you concentrate on developing your downline through individuals that are personally recruited by you. With affiliate marketing, there is no need to hire anybody but yourself as an individual entrepreneur since commission rates are based entirely on sales made from products or services offered through web pages produced by affiliates themselves.

Considering all these from the above, affiliate marketing is a much better choice!

Final Words

I have been in both affiliate marketing and network marketing, and I can inform you that they are two really various organization designs. However, I will select the previous one every time!

The appeal of affiliate marketing is that you can be an affiliate for several products at the same time. You’re not restricted to simply promoting one item from one business.

In reality, most effective affiliate marketers promote several items from numerous companies. This gives you a lot of freedom in terms of the products you can promote and permits you to pivot into various niches.

When you join a network marketing company, they typically have really stringent policies about what products you can promote and how you can promote them. As a network marketer, you need to use the possessions the business offers.

If you have more concerns about the differences between affiliate marketing and network marketing, do not hesitate to drop them in the comment area below!

How I Make Money With Affiliate Marketing

The program that I recommend as my #1 solution for making money online with affiliate marketing is based on a 100% proven and tested system.

The best thing about this method is that it is passive in terms of results and income.

In other words, you could be earning an income from your affiliate business for years and years to come because this method is so POWERFUL and overlooked by many marketers.

Just take a look at commissions that I earn passively all thanks to my #1 training program.

If you want to learn more about how you too can start making money online with affiliate marketing, click the button below!

After evaluating over 600+ programs on the web, my conclusion is easy. This is the best course to learn about ins and outs of affiliate marketing.

And if you’re looking for the very same, click the button below!




If you need any help or you have a question, feel free to contact me.

And feel free to share this article with your friends and family!

All the best, Ivan. Founder, and CEO

Leave a Comment