Wealthy Affiliate Free vs Premium- Here’s What You Need To Know Before Upgrading

Chances are you're considering becoming a Wealthy Affiliate Premium member. But you want to know if it's really worth the money, before you dive in.

Awesome. It’s smart to do your research before spending your money (and time) on ANY online program. So I always encourage my readers to do their due diligence.

This way, you can be confident you're making an informed decision.

So in this post, I’m going to show you the key differences between the Wealthy Affiliate free vs Premium membership. So you know exactly what to expect.

Before I do though, I just want to point out that this is not a review of Wealthy Affiliate. This is a comparison between WA's free vs paid membership.

So if you want more insight into what WA is all about, including my personal journey from zero to full time income, read my full review of Wealthy Affiliate here.

For those of you still here, let’s dive in!

I've broken this comparison down into the SIX main ways the free and paid accounts differ. And I’ll walk you through each of these now to show you what I mean...

1) Education

Wealthy affiliate is all about educating people on how to build an online business. A REAL online business. So there's an absolute boatload of comprehensive step-by-step training for members.

Unlike many other programs I've tried over years, nothing is left out. Everything you need to build your business is ALL there, ready for you to take full advantage of.

The training covers the basic concepts of affiliate marketing and setting up your site, right through to generating traffic, earning commissions and increasing conversions.

The training is simple and easy to follow too. Most lessons come with videos so you can follow along, step by step. And there are tasks to complete, with checkboxes, so you always know where you're up to.

This is really helpful considering the sheer scope of information available.

Anyways, the primary training course is called the 'Online Entrepreneur Certification', which includes 50 lessons in total. Then there's the 'Affiliate Bootcamp' course, which shows you how to promote wealthy affiliate. This includes 70 lessons all up.

If all you ever did was go through one of these courses, you could build a full time income online over time and with consistent effort. This is the 'meat' of WA. 

But the training doesn't stop there.

You've also got live weekly classes, video training archives from previous live classes and training created by WA members.

Not to mention, classrooms to help you master specific topics. Such as SEO, content creation, PPC, social media, keyword research, conversion optimisation, and pretty much anything relating to internet marketing you can think of. And all of which is constantly being updated, so it's always fresh.

That's the overview of what you get within WA as a Premium member. The chart below shows you the main differences between Starter vs Premium, for the 'education' side of things. This will help you draw a clear comparison so you know what to expect...




Online Entrepreneur Certification

10 lessons

50 lessons

Affiliate Bootcamp

10 lessons

70 lessons

Live Weekly Classes

Video Training Archive


2 classrooms

12 classrooms

Community Training

Create Your Own Training

I'll use this same format for the rest of the post too, to make it easy for you to compare free vs Premium within the other aspects of the WA platform.

2) Websites

This is where the action takes place. You can have all the training in the world, but if you don't take action by building your site, you won't make a dime.

Wealthy affiliate integrates with WordPress, so when you build you site at WA, you are building a WordPress site. WordPress is one of the most popular content management systems on the planet. And it's a favourite among many successful online marketers.

You don’t need WA to build a WordPress site, but there are many advantages to doing so. Especially if you’re just starting out.


Because first and foremost, the way WA integrates with WordPress makes your life easy. It takes the ‘guesswork’ and technical challenges out of the equation and helps you get the job one. It’s so simple you can build a site in under a minute.

There’s also tons of cool features added to help you run a more profitable and efficient online business. Such as SiteHealth, SiteComments, SiteFeedback and SiteContent for example.

SiteHealth helps you keep track of your site’s overall progress, and let's you know what you need to improve on, which is very helpful in building your business.

SiteComments allows you to get comments on your posts from real people, which can improve your conversions and potentially, your rankings.

SiteFeedback allows you to get feedback on your site, so you can see how what people like and don't like, and make changes to bring your site to the next level.

Lastly, SiteContent makes creating your content simple. It's a platform within WA, that allows you to create content and post it to your site with the click of a button. It also includes millions of free images you can use, and has all kinds of nifty features to make creating content a breeze.

Here's the breakdown of free vs Premium when it comes to websites...




Included sites





3,000 plus







Themes are ready made templates you can build your site off of. And plugins are 'add ons' you can use to make your site perform better or give you added functionality. As a free Starter member, your site does come pre-loaded with a couple of plugins by default, but just the basics.

In addition, you can also purchase and manage domains within wealthy affiliate. A domain is essentially the 'address' for your site, and it's essential for any site.

It’s really this level of integration that makes WA such a seamless and ‘all in one’ platform. Everythign you need is all under ONE roof.

3) Hosting

High quality web hosting is an essential part of any website. Without this, your website will not be live. So you will always need hosting.

You don't just want your site to be live though, you want people to be able to access it quickly, and you want your site to be secure. Which has everything to do with the quality of your hosting.

And the quality of hosting you get with wealthy affiliate is second to none.

Not only do you get fast, quality hosting, but you also get access to world class support. Whenever I contact the support within WA, I get a response within minutes. Literally every time.

In addition, you get features like SiteSSL, SiteSpeed and SiteProtect.

SiteSSL is free ‘one click’ security for your site, SiteSpeed makes your site load very quickly, and SiteProtect makes your site even more secure, and protects you from SPAM.

All of this means your site will provide your visitors with a great user experience, which is something Google loves. And something that positions you to attract more traffic and ultimately, earn more revenue from your site.




Powerful Servers

Website Support

Virus & Malware Protection

Website Monitoring



4) Keyword Research

Other than creating good content, this is the single most important task you can be doing to develop your site and bring in traffic. Keyword research.

Personally, I use Jaaxy to do all of my keyword research, which works well for me since I get lots of quality traffic to my sites.

When I first joined WA in 2015, you had to buy a separate subscription to Jaaxy for $19 per month (and upwards). But now, Jaaxy is included in both free and paid memberships.

Of course, they’re not going to give a paid service away, nor should they. So free Starter members are limited in how much they can do. But as a Premium member, you get a full Jaaxy membership.

In addition to keyword research, you can also use Jaaxy to perform niche research, affiliate program research and even competitor research. And to top it off, you can also track your site’s rankings using SiteRank.

This ONE aspect adds an incredible amount of value to the Premium membership. The further you get into building out your business, the more you will see what I mean. This takes the value of WA to a new level.

Keyword Research



Keyword Searches

30 Searches

Unlimited Searches

Niche Research

Competitor Research

Affiliate Program Research

SiteRank Tracking

30 Scans

100 Scans

Many Other Features

5) Support and Mentoring

This is what really separates wealthy affiliate from anywhere else online.

The level of support and mentoring within the wealthy affiliate community, is priceless. There are many ways to get support and mentoring within WA. Whenever you need it, for questions about any relevant topic.

It's one thing to have step by step training and great tools, but this is really what will help you reach success within the online world. This is what separates you from being stuck versus building an online business and reaching your goals.

You can ask questions within live chat instantly, contact support for help with your website, engage with the community after each lesson or by posting questions. And you can even get one on one support with private messaging.

Wealthy affiliate has over 1.2 million members as of writing this, many of which run highly successful businesses, and most of which are happy to help you.

Support and Mentoring



Live Chat

First 7 Days


Website Support

Community Help

First 7 Days


Private Messaging

6) Promoting Wealthy Affiliate

Anyone can promote wealthy affiliate, whether you're a free or paid member. However premium members do earn a higher rate of commission.

You earn money when someone joins WA through your unique affiliate link, and takes a specific action, like make a purchase. Just like any other affiliate program.

Starter members earn $4 for each Premium referral’s first month, $11.75 every month thereafter, or $87.50 for yearly upgrades. Premium members earn double this amount. So $8, $23.50 and $175 commissions respectively.

You can also earn from WA in other ways. Such as when someone completes their account ($1) and when they register a new domain name ($1).

Not to mention, if you promote WA there’s some added perks. Like how they fly you out to Vegas for an all expenses paid trip, if you make 300 sales within a year.

I was fortunate enough to achieve this myself within 2 years. And I even got to meet Kyle and Carson in person, along with other top affiliates. It was a blast!

You can read about my WA Vegas trip here.

I’m yet to see ANY other affiliate program actually pay their affiliates to come to a 4 day event. It’s normally the other way around! So I think this is very cool and speaks volumes about the people running WA.

Anyways, one last way you can earn is by creating training that other members find useful. This is not the path to a full time income, but it’s a good way to make a few extra bucks on the side!

Promoting WA



1st Month Premium Sales



Regular Premium Sales

$11.75 per month


Yearly Premium Sales



Earn By Creating Training

Is Wealthy Affiliate Premium Worth The Money?

When you consider what you are getting for $49 per month (everything you'll ever need to build a thriving online business), I’d say it’s worth it!

You could easily spend $100’s or even $1,000’s getting all of this separately. And even then, you would not have the level of seamless integration that WA offers.

So you’d be running around trying to fit all the pieces together yourself. Which is time wasting at best, and a nightmare at worst for most newbies.

Safe to say I’m a big fan and I think it’s worth it. I get tham I'm obviously biased since I promote WA. But I only promote stuff I believe in, and I KNOW WA is a great platform first hand.

I was able to take what I learned from WA and apply it, to build a full time passive income with affiliate marketing. And when you consider the fact that most businesses (online or offline) require significant capital to start, 49 bucks is a drop in the bucket.

If you want to get into affiliate marketing, then WA Premium is a no brainer.

Can You Still Make Money As a Free Starter Member?

The short answer is yes.

You can earn money online as a free member, and you do get some incredible value with a free membership. You can also keep your sites and training for life!

However, you are not getting everything you need to take your business all the way, if all you do is stay a free member.

This is the reality.

Trying to make it all the way with the free membership is kind of like attending the first semester of college and expecting to get a kickass job by the end of it.

Good luck with that.

I mean, you will learn stuff, so the Starter membership is worth it. 

But if you want real longterm results, you should be willing to invest some money into your business. I think this goes without saying. Businesses cost money to build. The great thing about WA is, that cost is extremely low.

Joining Wealthy Affiliate

There are four main ways you can start and/ or maintain your WA membership. I thought this section was worth including, to help you compare further.

$0 Starter Membership: This is the free Starter account which gives you 20 lessons, 2 free sites and other Starter benefits previously explained. There is no obligation to ever upgrade if you don’t want to. Some countries are excluded from this though.

$19 First Month Premium Offer: Your first month of WA Premium is only $19, which I think is cool because this gives you a chance to see first hand everything you get, before going ‘all in’. If you want to access this, join for free first, and then simply upgrade.

$49 Monthly Premium Membership: This is for people who continue after their first month, or who cannot access the free account due to specific country restrictions.

$359 Yearly Premium Membership: Same as the Premium monthly membership, but you have the chance to save some money. This works out to less than 30 bucks per month when you do the math.

Also, if you upgrade to yearly, WA credits you for wherever you are within your current monthly billing cycle. So for example if you are mid way through your month, you’ll get a further discount on a yearly upgrade.

You can become a free Starter or Premium member here.


As you can see, there are some big differences between the free and Premium membership within wealthy affiliate.

Both memberships offer you great value.

However, if you've read this far, you'll see that the free Starter account is for people interested in getting started. Premium is for those who want to take their business all the way, and commit to their success.

If you have any questions, feel free to drop me a comment below.

2 thoughts on “Wealthy Affiliate Free vs Premium- Here’s What You Need To Know Before Upgrading”

  1. how do i manage the starter plan to make profit and for example i upgrade to premium and the next month i was not able to pay the monthly plan is it possible to pay again

    • Hi David,

      If you upgrade and cancel, you can come back and restart your membership at any time. Just keep in mind that you will need to move your site/s to another host within 30 days, because if you’re not paying for your membership (which includes web hosting) you will need to find another web host to keep your sites running. Which is pretty easy to do if you are in that situation.

      Also worth emphasising here is that it takes time to start generating consistent revenue with a website. There are exceptions to this depending on which niche you choose, how quickly you learn and apply or if you have an existing social following for example. But as someone starting out completely new, with no experience, like I did, you should expect to be working hard for a few months at least before you start to see profits.

      Not sure if I mentioned this in the article, but it took me 3 months to make y first dollar. Now I make 6 figures per year (USD) doing this stuff.

      So my point here is that if you do upgrade to a Premium membership at Wealthy Affiliate, you really want to set aside enough money to pay for 3-6 months. This is the smart and realistic approach to building your business. Otherwise if you signup expecting to make money (or needing to make money) sooner, you may end up quitting before you give yourself the time you need to succeed.

      Hope this helps.


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