Is it Feasible to Maintain a Small Affiliate Website in 2024? Insights from the Latest Google Core Updates

In 2024, following the significant Helpful Google Core Updates, one might wonder whether it’s still viable to run a small affiliate website on a limited budget, especially for those looking to explore new niches and earn affiliate commissions.

Traditionally, affiliate websites are backed by a dedicated team of specialists who work tirelessly to create top-notch content and secure valuable backlinks. Despite these efforts, the landscape remains challenging.

Case Study: Affiliate Websites in the Netherlands

#Case 1


  • The market: The Netherlands
  • Websites : Affiliate websites for Electronics

Consider the scenario of affiliate websites focusing on electronics in the Netherlands. One such website, specializing in various types of air conditioners, boasted an extensive network of backlinks to affiliate programs. Unfortunately, following the Helpful Content Update in September, the site experienced a dramatic drop in traffic—from 19,000 to just 320 users.

Affiliate websites for Electronics

I also want to show you the types of keywords by intent for that website:

#Case 2


  • The market: The Netherlands
  • Websites:  Affiliate websites for Coffee makers

An absolutely unique affiliate website about different types of coffee makers, featuring authors and unique photos, also experienced a drop in traffic.

affiliate website #2

I also want to show you the types of keywords by intent for that website:


Case #3.


  • The market: The Netherlands
  • Websites: Affiliate websites for kitchen appliances

affiliate website for kitchen applienceI also want to show you the types of keywords by intent for that website. Please note that informational intent is less than 50%:

And I want to show you another small website that didn’t lose traffic after the Google Core Updates, with a very low DR, that is slowly but surely moving forward

Special Case #4

  • The market: The Netherlands
  • Websites: Affiliate websites for home electronics

Affiliate website that didn't lose traffic after Google Updates

What is the special approach of that website that allows it to grow with such a humble DR?

That website has a total of 141 pages indexed in Google search

If you want to see how many pages contain the word ‘beste’ (in English: ‘best’) in URL
It is only 12 pages.

If you want to check the types of keywords that website has, you will see that 77.1% have informational intent

If you want to check the ratio of ‘best keywords’ to the total number of keywords, it’s 139 keywords to 2,757 keywords. Only 5% of the total keywords have commercial intent, which allows such a small website to grow.

Key Takeaways:

  • The recent Google Core Updates have significantly impacted small affiliate websites, particularly those overly reliant on commercial keywords.
  • Websites with a focus on informational content are more resilient, as users seek trustworthy information rather than just product recommendations.
  • Maintaining a balanced ratio of informational to commercial keywords and providing unique, high-quality content is key to sustainable growth, even for small affiliate websites.

In summary, while the landscape is challenging, small affiliate websites can still survive and thrive post-update by prioritizing user intent, creating exceptional content, and maintaining an effective keyword strategy.

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