Here are my credentials to write this article. I’ve been an online gambling affiliate for about 7 years, I have earned placement for one of my affiliate sites in the “top 20 poker affiliate sites” for US customers, and I was a moderator of the largest poker affiliate forum.
Net earnings are in the (removed for privacy reasons).
Even being an affiliate for what I consider to be a long time, when you take into account the immaturity and relatively short life of online gambling, I’m still amazed at how much smart gaming affiliates earn.
There are so many ways and categories poker affiliates can be put in, from incentive-based, to rakeback, to bonus scalpers, to the plain-jane affiliate.
As I go through these numbers with you, bear in mind that many affiliates are into different verticals.
For example, I’ve taken what I know from being a poker affiliate and applied it to casino sites, mixed martial arts, boxing, football, and other forms of betting as well.
While there’s no true definition of a super affiliate, I use this title sparingly. It’s difficult to categorize one as a super affiliate based on revenues, because one player alone can put you into that category.
In general, a super affiliate in my mind runs a website that most other affiliates in the industry know by name, follow, and for monetary purposes make a minimum of $100,000 per month in revenues. Despite falling into this category, I’ve never tagged myself a super affiliate, because I see so many others doing WAY better than I do.
It’s not exactly something most people say for fear of giving away too much information to their competition. Luckily for most people, they have multiple sites, and the ones that look like they generate the least probably generate the most.
Poker and casino affiliate sites can be very deceptive like that.
Okay, so you probably want numbers by now. I can only go off what I’ve heard through the grapevine and experienced myself. Without revealing his website, about four years ago I heard of a one-man affiliate who ranked for just about all the lucrative keywords in Google, and he was earning approximately $500,000 per month.
While he had hundreds of websites, most of them were used as feeders to his main sites (he had about three at that time). He has since fallen, and others have taken his place in Google, but I’m sure with ongoing revenue share and other ventures, he’s probably still in the same area, if not more.
While I won’t go into exact details of my personal monthly earnings, I will say that I’ve come close to the mark stated above, but it was an extraordinary month and most of the revenues were from very large casino earnings resulting from only a few players.
The days following the UIGEA resulted in a bizarre event. The money that changed hands during that period was truly amazing, because people sold their sites for almost nothing, basically giving them away. Sites worth millions these days sold for the low 6 figures.
Again, sites like PokerListings are large corporations, and websites like PokerStrategy or PokerSource are run by dozens of employees so their revenues absolutely exceed $1,000,000 a month.
The now-deceased founder of PokerListings (Andreas Oscarsson, who was killed in his home) was heard over some beers saying that he was making over a million a month, and that was a few years back.
I personally don’t attend these gambling affiliate conferences, because I simply don’t care to. PokerListings has since grown into a mega monster dominating almost all keywords and holding various domains and making very large sums in all sorts of industries.
Then you get into rakeback affiliate sites. While I never really cared to learn about rakeback, I do know the largest rakeback site is raketherake (owned by Karim Wilkins), and it apparently dominates that poker niche. Since it’s inception in 2004 through the mid part of 2009, it generated $56 million in rake for its players.
Rakeback affiliates are generally left with a margin of 8%-15% of what their players generate, which is why I find the number above to be kind of weak.
Assuming he made an average of 15%, he would have generated gross revenues of $10,000,000 for the five years. Not bad, but not great for a super affiliate. The dollar amount is actually calculated on their website in real time.
Personally, I have nothing to gain from telling you that the poker, casino, or the sports market is unsaturated, since I’m not selling you on anything. The people that tell you this are either bad at what they do, or they are trying to posture in order to keep the competition down.
In fact, we put up an affiliate website a month ago, and it already earns 5 figures a month. Like most things, it’s not difficult, but it does take a lot of knowledge, luck, and persistence.
In fact, the CEO of WickedFire claimed he knew an affiliate who was earning $15,000,000 per month. I claim 100% BS, but who really knows?
As I said, the numbers in this article are usually just people running their mouth, like we all do sometimes. This article was meant to be a rough guide for the affiliate side of the gambling sites.
Here’s a small collection of polls and stats for monthly revenues.
These are earnings for one sportsbook affiliate site. They are the top 5 affiliate earners for this particular sportsbook, plus they are probably doing very well at other sites they promote.
Take note that earnings usually double during the time of American football season. This was before football betting season.
This was a small poll taken sometime in 2008. It’s mostly poker affiliates with some hybrid affiliates who promote casinos and poker rooms. This was monthly earnings. The poll is off because I know of a few affiliates in the top categories that obviously didn’t vote.
Again, as you can see, the earnings for the top 5 affiliates are quite high, in the 6 figures for one program. This was for sportsbook.com, but many affiliates now promote their poker site and casino as well.