Fossil of affiliates: Solo Affiliate Marketing in 2023?
Katrina L

Solo affiliate – a path to nowhere? Or is it still a remote work opportunity and source of income?

Ten years ago, all webmasters started their journey as solo affiliate marketers. Everything was great: almost any source brought profit. The concept of finding a job as a media buyer, as we understand it today, simply did not exist.

Times and affiliate marketing have changed. Solo affiliate marketing has been replaced by the trend of affiliate marketing teams. As they say in the team: more potential, opportunities, budget, higher ROI, support, training, lower risks and more opportunities.

To become part of a team, you need to create your own or apply for one of the many vacancies.

Is it possible that solo affiliate marketing lost its relevance by 2023? Is it worth starting to work as a solo affiliate marketer now, or is this no longer so promising? And are there any lone wolves who continue to go solo?

Solo Affiliate Marketing
Solo Affiliate Marketing "Solo" is translated from Italian as "one" or "single". A solo affiliate is someone who works alone. He chooses the offer himself, determines the source of traffic, tests creatives, sets a budget, creates landing pages, and decides when to work. He is a Swede, a reaper, and a trumpet player. Of course, solo affiliates can use freelancers: designers, translators, IT specialists, etc. In modern times, you can look for help in routine tasks in neural networks.
However, solo affiliate marketing is when the affiliate makes all decisions himself and accepts consequences.
Pros of solo Affiliate Marketing:
  • Self-employment, or the ability to work as much as you want. You are your own boss.
  • The ability to work from anywhere in the world: in the office or at home.
  • Work according to your personal schedule, whenever you want - day, night, even on New Year's Day.
  • All profit remains with you.
  • Theoretically, there is no ceiling on earnings. However, please note that your time resource is not unlimited.
Disadvantages of solo Affiliate Marketing:
  • All risks are solely on you.
  • Testing, running campaigns, scaling, research and decision making require independence, skills, resources and knowledge.
  • Time Constraint – everyone has the same amount of hours in a day, and when working alone, you are limited by time.
  • The budget is limited to what you personally have or borrowed money.
  • Payment for all trackers and services also falls on your shoulders.
  • Emotional component - working alone, you are deprived of the opportunity to brainstorm and discuss current tasks and ideas with colleagues. Although, of course, you can become part of the forum community and communicate online with like-minded people. Yet this is not always comparable to a colleague who is in the same boat as you.
There are many technical aspects to affiliate marketing that you need to know and understand. However, there is one thing in solo affiliate marketing that is not directly related to your technical knowledge and skills - this is self-organization and self-discipline. When working alone, you don't have a strict schedule that you 'have to' follow. There are no sick days, paid holidays, weekends or vacations. No one will call on Slack or Skype asking 'good afternoon, when will you start and where is the report?' No one will provide a clear plan and tasks for today and for the next week ahead.
In solo affiliate marketing, as in other forms of freelancing, everything depends on you. You find offers yourself, launch campaigns, keep records and pay taxes.
The ability to correctly prioritize and concentrate on truly important tasks that bring results, both in the present and in the future, plays a key role. For some, this is a definite plus - the opportunity for realization and freedom. For others, it is an unjustified risk and responsibility for which they are not prepared.
Affiliate marketing is a business. It is a well-known fact that a business can consist of one entrepreneur and function successfully. It is possible to run campaigns and have a stable income in affiliate marketing. If you believe what they say in interviews with solo traders from conferences and YouTube channels, a stable income in solo affiliate marketing can vary from $1,000 to $250,000 per month. Let's break it down - everyone loves big headlines, and somewhere in the middle we'll find the truth. A few years ago, STM Forum conducted a survey of members asking how much they earned per year. Below is a graph with the results of this survey:   The chart gives you an idea that income in affiliate marketing can vary greatly. You can see that 18% of affiliate marketers in the survey earn less than $20,000 per year (approximately $1,600 per month). However, there are those who earn huge amounts of money. We take into account that the survey did not take into consideration whether the affiliate works alone or in a team and how large this team is. There is also no information about affiliate marketing experience.
If your goal is to make a lot of money and break five-figure ROI records every month, then it will probably be difficult to achieve on your own.
Not because of a lack of budget, knowledge or talent, no, you just don’t have enough time and only two hands. Simply because you are a person, not a machine. It's corny, but true. It makes sense to think about the possibility of a team here. In other words, the team is a template path to a bigger check. But no one says that there are no other ways. Because the result 10 can be obtained by multiplication, division, addition and even subtraction.
Is anyone else doing this?
Are solo affiliates just extinct dinosaurs in the affiliate marketing world? The trend towards the proliferation of affiliate teams confirms that it is likely that solo affiliate marketing will not lead in the affiliate marketing niche, giving way to teams. However, there are those who continue to run campaigns alone. Is it realistic to still make money on solo affiliate marketing these days? Quite. As Gagarin said: 'If you really want to, you can fly into space...' 
What is more important here is whether you have enough strength, endurance and motivation to perform a huge number of tasks on an ongoing basis, not burn out and continue to work.
Ultimately the decision is yours, and you can always try different options before making a decision or change it along the way. Do you work alone or in a team? What are the pros and cons? Do you think solo affiliate marketing has a future?