Search Google for “best web hosting.” You will find two things…
- Bluehost will be on that list
- There will be many affiliate marketers with Bluehost reviews.
This should tell you that Bluehost is a top-tier hosting provider and hosting affiliate programs are lucrative and competitive.
Let’s take a look at the Bluehost affiliate program and how you can make money with it.
How to Join Bluehost Affiliate Program
Generaly speaking, hosting affiliate programs are some of the easiest to qualify for. They tend to pay well due to the significant lifetime value of a hosting customer. They are happy to pay large customer acquisition costs like affiliate commissions.
To join the Bluehost affiliate program just go to Bluehost Affiliate Signup.
They will collect the usual personal and tax information, payment directions and your website address. Excluded websites include:
- Free Gifts
Everyone else seems to be approved.
You can also join the Bluehost program at CJ A key advantage to selecting the CJ program over the in-house one is that CJ provides for deep linking to any page at Bluehost. With the in-house program you are limited to their banners and other links.
Bluehost offers everything from low cost shared hosting to dedicated servers. One thing I really like is that all plans include C-panel access to control hosting, database, email accounts, etc.. Shared hosting plans at other companies often provide more rudimentary control of your host. The specific plans include:
- Shared hosting: The lowest cost option a good place to start.
- Cloud hosting: A more flexible environment that will let you quickly scale if you have more traffic or larger computing requirements.
- WordPress hosting: Dedicated hosting for WordPress sites. Pre-tuned and with security enhancements.
- WooCommerce hosting: Similar to the WordPress hosting but specifically tuned for WooCommerce on WordPress.
- VPS (Virtual Private Server) hosting: VPS servers are an upgrade from shared and very similar to the cloud hosting. The differences is that with a VPS you are getting a “piece” of a specific computer. With cloud hosting the resources are spread out over multiple machines.
- Dedicated server hosting: A dedicated server as it sounds is your own server. You do not need to worry about the other sites on your server having a sudden spike in resource usage slowing you down. You also don’t need to worry about bad neighbors from an SEO standpoint.
Their prices are very aggressive though must plans require an upfront annual payment. Only the most expensive plans have a monthly payment option. Bluehost is probably best known as having very good but not the very best performance profile and one-of-best 24×7 support groups. That is a winning combination for many niches.
For each of the product categories Bluehost has three plans. Usually the first month is discounted by around 33% – but the plans are paid upfront per year. The pricing is quoted per month but billed per year. Though many hosting and SaaS companies do this, I still find it misleading. Why tell me the monthly price if that is not an option? I can divide just fine on my on!
All plans have 1,2 and 3 year pricing with additional discounts for each longer commitments. The three year plan is very aggressively priced in all plans.
All plans have a 30 money back warranty.
The tables below will give you a general idea of pricing.
Shared Hosting Pricing
|Pricing for a 12-month contract
|Pricing for a 12-month contract
VPS Hosting Pricing
|Pricing for a 12-month contract
Bluehost Affiliate Commission Rates and Rules
Bluehost Affiliate Commission Rate
Bluehost pays a flat $65 for each no hosting plan referral. That’s amazing considering the customer may only be spending $8 per month and getting the first month for $3. So an initial purchase decision of $3 (easy close) pays $65. Huh? How can that be? Well, it is all about customer lifetime value. Bluehost knows that hosting purchases are sticky. People don’t change hosts often so once captured they typically have the customer for a while. Many customers also upgrade to more expensive plans as they grow.
This is great for you as an affiliate.
What about those expensive plans? The $200 dedicated servers must pay hundreds in commissions per referral, right? Unfortunately no. They pay the same $65.
If you think you have an audience more likely to buy a $100+ plan than a shared hosting one, there are better affiliate hosting programs out there like LiquidWeb (where this site is located). They pay 150% of the sale with a $150 minimum!
Liquid Web Affiliate Commissions
|$150 – $2,000
|$150 – $3,000
|$150 – $3000
|$150 – $5,000
|$150 – $7,000
Bluehost Affiliate Commission Rules
Bluehost does not have any draconian rules. Pretty standard …
- You can’t use their trademarks or misspelled versions in ads.
- You can’t do sneaky things like cookie stuffing or redirecting sites to Bluehost
- You need to notify them of all sites you promote them on
- You must follow affiliate disclosure rules for your platform and government
Hosting affiliates with their big payouts are targets of scammers (which give all affiliates a bad name) Bluehost and their peers have sophisticate fraud prevention systems – don’t try anything cute.
Affiliate Tools and Support
At Bluehost you have an affiliate dashboard with easy access to all of your banners, ads, text links and more. They have affiliate account managers whose job is to make you more successful.
If you enroll with CJ then you get a slightly different set of tools.
- Integrated dashboard with your other CJ affiliate programs
- Deep Linking – link to any page at Bluehost and add your affiliate ID for sales credit.
- 120 Day vs. 90 day cookies
- Bluehost banners and ads
How to Promote Bluehost Online
Wondering if you can make money as a Bluehost affiliate? Well consider this ..Pat Flynn at Smart Passive Income, per his income reports, made $27,650 from Bluehost affiliate commissions. That’s a nice payday. But this is also what makes it hard. Few sites can go head to head with Pat Flynn for SEO traffic. Then you have lots of grey hat types with PBNs after the big payouts of hosting programs like Bluehost.
Unless you have an existing authority site with relevance in the hosting niche and lots of backlinks, you won’t be able to rank well for something like “Best Web Hosting”. That term may have 15k searches a month but there are 85k articles with that keyword in the title. Even “Bluhost review” with 6500 monthly searches has almost 3,800 pages with the keyword in the title! That’s a lot of competition for Google search results. The trick will be to:
Promote using Social — Get creative with social. If you are in tech or other groups where hosting recommendations come up, be helpful and provide links only where not spammy.
Promote to your audience via email — Create a white-paper or infographic with lots of valuable info in it. Give this in return for an email. Then put these subscribers in a sales funnel for hosting affiliate programs. Continue to send great info and eventually send these now warm leads the affiliate links.
Longtail keywords for SEO — Even though you will likely never rank for the head keyword, you want SEO traffic. This SEO traffic can also feed the hosting funnel email campaign. Look for longtail keywords that are less competitive. Comparison articles often work well like, “Bluehost vs. Inmotion” or maybe an article comparing Bluehost’s WordPress hosting product to dedicated managed WordPress like wpEngine and Kinsta.
Using the CJ deep linking capability — You can create content around specific topics that are addressed on Bluehost’s site. Then you can link to these resources and embed your affiliate id.
At $65 per referral you could consider advertising. I always start with retargeting ads to your website visitors and email list. This is low hanging fruit. For cold ads, like the SEO situation, look to bid on long-tail keywords. I would route them to a landing page on your site from the ad. Get them “cookied” and try to capture an email. Bluehost has the usual restrictions on using their trademark or close/mis-spellings. They specifically don’t allow you to use:
Bluehost, Blue Host, bluehost.com, www.bluehost.com, blue hosting, blue-host, bluhost, blue web hosting, bluehost web hosting, bluehosting, www bluehost com, blue domain, blue host.com, www.bluehost, bluehost com, blulehost.com, bluehosts, www bluehost, bluehost inc, web hosting blue, www. bluehost.com, bluhost.com, bluehosted, bluhost
Pros and Cons —
Bluehost Affiliate Program
Deep Linking with CJ Program
Payouts are fixed at $65
No extra commission for selling VPS or dedicated
Hosting is competitive
How much does Bluehost pay affiliates?
Bluehost pays its affiliates $65 per new hosting account.
How long do you have to make a sale from someone who uses your affiliate link?
Bluehost has a 90-day cookie. As long as the customer purchases within 90 days of arriving with your affiliate link you will receive the commission.
What products are eligible for affiliate sales?
Any hosting package is eligible for the $65 bounty. Even the $2.95/mo plan!
Does Bluehost run its own affiliate program?
Bluehost's affiliate program is managed in-house and by Commission Junction (CJ).
Should You Become a Bluehost Affiliate?
Bluehost is a great affiliate program – especially for shared and other entry-level plans. Signup with CJ vs. Bluehost and get an extra 30 days of cookie time (120 vs. 90) and deep linking which can be effectively used in your content marketing strategy.
If you have prospects for shared and also larger servers for small businesses vs. individuals, add another hosting program like LiquidWeb. They are an equally good host (though more expensive) and pay much better on the larger hosting plans.
Bluehost paid out over $5 million in affiliate commissions last year – go get your share!