Only 10% Of Wealthy Affiliate Members Are Successful!

Last Update: July 13, 2020

The idea that 10% of Wealthy Affiliate members are successful is a silly bit of misinformation that gets passed around, so I figured I'd write a blog post about it, and share my thoughts. Rather than get to clever and wordy about it, let's just jump in.

1. Wealthy Affiliate doesn't track your earnings because they cannot

I participate in about 50+ affiliate programs. ONE of them is Wealthy Affiliate. I've posted many blog posts over the years highlighting my earnings outside of Wealthy Affiliate, and make sure to include screenshots as proof of earnings.


These websites are not hosted at Wealthy Affiliate. I like to diversify my hosting to gain experience, and also some of these websites are quite old. I've been a member here for 10 years and have tried many hosts over that time period (more than five).

Wealthy Affiliate doesn't know how much I earn because they are not involved in my other affiliate programs. I sold coffee enemas for 2 years and they had no idea!

On top of that, how on Earth could you calculate my "success rate" when many of my websites are not inside Wealthy Affiliate hosting. You can't see my traffic, let alone clicks.

2. Traffic Doesn't Always Correlate To Earnings

It's a pretty common refrain that you'll see posted here inside Wealthy Affiliate from time to time that even just one well-positioned blog post can earn a lot of money. I posted about making $300/month from a single blog post back in 2016.

Dale wrote about making $286 from a website he created years ago and forgot about.

Here's another one which earned 31 sales from a $3600 item with a single review post on his website.

A single blog post can earn hundreds or thousands of dollars, so the earnings from a website are not always tied to traffic results. You can have a small website with some well-positioned product reviews that convert well, versus a website with 10x the traffic and only monetized with display ads, versus a website which only collects emails and earns money with email marketing.

Which website earns more? Only the owners know. You can speculate all you want, but it's wrong to assume that everyone is running their business in the exact same way as you.

So what I've seen done by a couple of haters over the years is that they'll basically look at WA servers and do some real wonky estimates about how many websites are hosted on WA, then how much traffic is going to WA websites, and how much people are earning based on that.

Obviously, tons of variables in there, and even much more guessing based on erroneous estimations, so these numbers people spew out mean absolutely nothing.

3. Success Is Relative

What is success? It's seems silly that I have to say this, but success is relative. Each person here in Wealthy Affiliate has different goals, and different ideas about success.

A stay at home mom who earns $500/month while tinkering with her website on the weekends could be totally happy with that. She doesn't need a 500 column spreadsheet to pick the perfect niche. She doesn't need to build backlinks. She doesn't need to outsource content. She can have a great side business blogging about a hobby and rockin' Pinterest.

A young guy with dreams of lambos and a couple of daily energy drinks could pump out 5 articles a day for six months and have a $10k/month business in that time period. He might still feel like a failure though because he's not a millionaire, can't afford a lambo yet, and is working too hard.

A third person could be working on their website for many years and not see much in terms of affiliate earnings, but then they start their own content creation service, or local SEO service, or manage WordPress websites for a fee. Maybe they never see a dime in affiliate earnings, but start an online business because of what they learned here inside Wealthy Affiliate.

Are these people successful or not? Only they can decide that. When you look at what another person has achieved and decide if they are successful or not, you are projecting your own goals onto them.

Why Do People Love This Statistic?

I've seen various things over the years from "haters" speculating that only x% of Wealthy Affiliate members are earning income from their websites. While writing this blog post, I was thinking about why people latch onto that statement.

In my opinion, people like to see that number because it sets them up for a soft landing.

Oh, only 10% of Wealthy Affiliate members actually earn money? Then it's not my fault my website isn't working. The training doesn't work! Time to move on.

What Wealthy Affiliate teaches isn't magic. It's not a secret formula.

  1. Pick A Topic
  2. Build A Website
  3. Publish Content
  4. Add Affiliate Links

There's no "best niche". There's no "fast track". There's no "secret formula". Any niche can work. Anyone can make money. It takes a lot of work, and the path to success is a windy one. If you get caught up in believing that only 10% of people are successful, then you'll probably end up in the 90% that fail.

Focus on taking daily action to reach your goals. Don't worry about what other people are achieving. Someone else can earn a million dollars a day, and it doesn't take away from your ability to earn $1000 per month.

Join the Discussion
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Recent messages
sharon22 Premium
I am a stay-at-home mom who earns pennies from affiliate programs but contented for now as I am not able to spend much time and energy growing and maintaining my website. However, all the tasks learned here, I am doing it consistently albeit rather slowly. End of the day, I feel happy about it. Little progress but productive with time well spent.

Thanks, Nathaniell, for the inspiring post.
BillyS3 Premium
Point on man!
Makes me think of the 'Donkey, poor man&son; story.
I guess the main point here is; Just focus on your work, and goals. Listen to value addition advice and ignore any talk of comparing or gauging your success with others. Just aim for YOUR success.

My regards
Colorman Premium
You are totally right Nathaniel. I haven't made much with my MMO site, but I am rocking it with Local SEO for local clients. None of the sites that I am working on are hosted within WA. The knowledge has, however, come from this great platform.

So I say to hell with all the 10 percenters. Success is indeed relative. If you are an eagle, don't take flying lessons from a chicken.
nathaniell Premium
Exactly the kind of story I'm talking about Leonard. If someone were to "investigate" Wealthy Affiliate servers and "see" your website, they'd never guess that you were busy working on other people's websites based on what you learned here about WordPress, content creation, and local SEO.

Ha. Lots of great sayings coming out of this thread. I haven't heard this one about the chickens and eagles either!
AparnaBansal Premium
It amazes me that u take so much effort to write these articles to convince people to 'please' give their dreams a chance ! Are u an angel ? wow ! Especially when u have so much on your plate, and so much in your bank.
I can only say thank u Nathaniell. U are truly awesome.
This is Advice worth a million dollars. Thank u thank u thank u.

I wish we had a method of SHARING fabulous posts. This qualifies as one of the best i have ever read.

With love,
CassiOfTroy Premium
I agree, Aparna!
nathaniell Premium
There's definitely a way to share this post. Title is pretty clickbait-y, so you might get some good traction on it :)
Wallush Premium
You are right, people need the motivation to hear that it's possible to earn money, and each telling the amount earned in the last month or year it just sound good
This is my second month here, and working hard to reach my target, I believe is possible, it doesnt matter for me , how much money people earned
Good article!