AdSense vs Affiliate Marketing. Which one is Better for Kenyan Bloggers


Kenyan bloggers have limited choices in regard to monetization; AdSense and affiliate marketing are the two most popular programs. But the main challenge is to choose between AdSense and affiliate marketing.

Ever since I joined blogging in 2012, I have been using both and the experience I have is enough to give an informed opinion. I started with AdSense, which I dropped in 2017 for affiliate marketing. One reason I did so was that I wanted to build a brand which is not dependent on another brand. Ever since, my income has grown by over 500%. But the journey has been rough and intimidating.

Any new blogger starts by registering for AdSense. Nearly 99% of Kenyan bloggers in Kenya still monetize with AdSense. One reason AdSense is the best for Kenyan bloggers is because they earn without making a sale. AdSense pays in terms of Cost Per Click (CPC) or Cost Per 1,000 visits(CPM). Bloggers on AdSense don’t bother to sell anything; all they are interested in is traffic.

I always interact with other Kenyan bloggers, so many of them, to get opinion concerning AdSense and affiliate marketing and only 1% of them are comfortable with affiliate marketing. Nearly all of them claim that affiliate marketing is not worth their efforts.

Here are some of the reasons why affiliate marketing is not popular in Kenya:

  • Majority of bloggers don’t have the skills and patience required to market affiliate products.
  • Majority of the affiliate programs can’t be trusted. They don’t provide accurate reporting; some sales are not recorded.
  • Limited affiliate marketing programs. Currently, less than 20 companies in Kenya offer serious affiliate marketing programs.
  • Kenyan Bloggers need quick money which only AdSense can provide.
  • Majority of Kenyan companies have unpredictable future; they can terminate their affiliate programs anytime.

Based on the facts above, here is a better program given AdSense and affiliate marketing?

AdSense is perfect for Kenyan bloggers, particularly those with small and medium blogs. With AdSense, they have regular income. AdSense is also a trustworthy program where you earn based on your efforts.

However, if you have garnered substantial experience in marketing, you can occasionally incorporate affiliate links to your articles. One of the best affiliate companies to register with is Jumia—this is the only company I can say is credible. Apart from Jumia, one can also earn from affiliate programs associated with gambling, though gambling is currently being fought by the government.

As an experienced blogger, I won’t advise you to go for affiliate marketing over AdSense unless you possess prior experience of marketing products online. I have tried some before and the experience I had was nasty.

When you own a popular blog, one that gets over 300,000 visits per month, you’ll earn over Ksh70,000 from AdSense. If your blog grows to attract more than 1 million page views per month, you’ll earn in excess of Ksh100,000 monthly.

Instead of burning midnight oil to promote affiliate programs and you end up earning absolutely nothing, register with AdSense.


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