Affiliate marketing is a great way to make money with your website or blog. It’s popular because it is relatively easy and low cost to get started. For example, you can begin making commission simply by providing an affiliate link when promoting a product on your blog. This means you can set up an affiliate program with Clickbank and earn commissions by selling someone else’s product.
This guide on how to start affiliate marketing is going to tell you how to get started on clickbank,clickbank affiliate marketing for beginners and clickbank affiliate commission rate.
How to start affiliate marketing with clickbank daily
Step 1: Choose Your Niche as an Affiliate Marketer
Choosing your niche is an important first step for successful affiliate marketing. You need to be able to hone into a specify audience, create content that will resonate with them, and offer products that they will want to buy.
Often, people who are new to affiliate marketing make the mistake of choosing a very broad niche like finance, weight loss, or relationships.
Don’t get me wrong, these are great niches, but they are huge topics with many big players dominating those industries.
So, what’s the solution?
Start with a broad category like one mentioned above, and then look for opportunities to “sub-niche” down.
For example, weight loss is a great niche for affiliate marketing, but a less competitive space in the weight loss industry would be ‘weight loss for women’. Ok, that’s still too broad, but we’re now down by one level.
Can we go any deeper?
How about ‘weight loss for new moms?’ Yep, that’s now 2 levels deep, and much more specific than just ‘weight loss’.
You could also take this a step further and cross both the weight loss and the fitness niche by targeting ‘new moms who want to strengthen and tone the abdomen while burning belly fat’.
You get the idea.
Choosing the right niche for affiliate marketing is important, so I recommend you read this article on how to choose your niche.
Just make sure you’re niching down to define your target market, and you’re choosing a niche where people are spending money.
If you still need more ideas, then you can read my article here for sub-niche ideas. I add to this list regularly, and so far there’s 81 to choose from!
Step 2: Choose Good Affiliate Programs
Choosing the right products to promote is crucial to your success, especially when starting affiliate marketing with no money.
Look to find 3-5 good products that your audience will need.
Some affiliate programs will pay per sale, others pay per lead, and some pay per click. Each one has its pros and cons, but it’s a good idea to have a healthy mix of each as part of your monetization strategy.
In particular, I recommend you choose to promote affiliate products from a combination of the following categories:
- High ticket product – This pays you at the very least $100 per sale, but preferably more. There are products out there that pay you as much as $1,000+ per sale. Look to see if there are any good high-ticket offers in your niche.
- Recurring product – Usually, you’ll find this in a membership course or software product where the customer pays monthly or yearly to use it. The company then pays you for each month or year they stay a customer.
- Pay-per-lead offer – The company pays you per lead (ie email address or phone number, etc), instead of per sale. Pay per lead offers don’t pay as much, but you will find that your conversions are higher, so it’s a nice addition to your overall income.
Personally, I’d avoid promoting anything that’s gonna pay you less than $20 per sale, unless it’s a product that converts well and complements your core offering of products.
Where to Start
If you’re a beginner, I recommend you join an affiliate network like ClickBank, ShareASale, or CommissionJunction.
Personally, my first choice for affiliate marketing beginners is ClickBank. It’s where I started, and I now still promote several great offers on this network 9 years later.
ClickBank is easy and free to join. Once you start earning commissions, they pay you out weekly (two weeks in arrears), with a minimal payout threshold of just $10. This is great if you’re just getting started because many other networks will only pay you out once per month on $50 or more!
Another reason why I recommend ClickBank for beginners is because they have a lot of good products that will often pay you as much as 50 – 75% per sale. Compare this to the average 1-6% per sale promoting Amazon products and you can see why a lot of affiliates choose to work with ClickBank compared to Amazon.
When choosing products to promote, it’s also critical to be able to tell how well the product is selling. The last thing you want to do is spend months trying to promote a product that is not selling.
ClickBank also makes it easy to see which products are best sellers via their gravity metric.
Promote Affiliate Products From Several Different Merchants
The safest way to make money online as an affiliate marketer is by promoting products from many different merchants and product owners, rather than promoting one product from one seller.
This is because if that seller pulls their affiliate program, or changes the terms on you, you won’t lose all your hard-earned income overnight.
It’s also better for your business long-term. If you’re promoting 5 or more products from 5 different merchants, you’ll have a diverse portfolio.
When you’re just getting started with affiliate marketing, start with 1-2 solid products, and then look to increase your offering from there.
Step 3: Use an Affiliate Bridge Page Funnel
One of the most effective ways to run an affiliate marketing business is to use a bridge page funnel with an email autoresponder.
By using a bridge funnel, you can collect leads, build an email list, and then continue to market to your audience for months or years to come.
This is what the big players do.
Basically, the landing page on your funnel will offer some kind of free gift (known as a lead magnet) in exchange for the visitor’s email address.
Once the visitor submits their email address, they are automatically redirected to the bridge page where the affiliate marketer then pitches a product. Regardless if the person buys the product on the bridge page or not, the affiliate now has their email address.
This is key because you can now use the email address to market to them via automated emails for months or even years to come.
By now, you’re probably thinking it costs money to set up a bridge funnel with an autoresponder, right?
If I was writing this article 2 years ago, then I would agree, and therefore, I’d not recommend this for affiliate marketing with no money. The alternate strategy would be to only use platforms where you can insert an affiliate link directly.
While you can do that and make some money on the front end (after all, it is certainly easier), you’ll be leaving a LOT of money on the table!
Thanks to GrooveFunnels, even an affiliate marketer with zero cash can get started the right way by using a bridge funnel and build a list.
I won’t go on about them too much in this article, but Groove offers a completely free account with a number of useful features that will allow you to use a bridge funnel and collect email leads up to 500 subscribers.
Once you’ve reached 500 subs you should be earning more than enough money to reinvest back into your business and take things to the next level.
You can sign up for a free GrooveFunnels account here.
Then, watch this video for a tutorial on how to set up your bridge funnel.
Once you have your bridge funnel set up and you’re ready to collect emails, you just need to choose one of the 3 platforms below and start creating content. In your content, you will direct people to visit your bridge funnel landing page.
Drive Traffic To Your Bridge Funnel & Collect Leads With Free Traffic
Now you have the core of your new business set up, all that’s left for you to do is to choose one of the free platforms below, and start generating organic traffic through publishing content your audience will love to consume.
Bear in mind, working with free traffic will take you more time to reach your goals, but it is absolutely possible.
In my opinion, the following 3 platforms will work best for you if you’re starting affiliate marketing with no money.
Platform #1: Affiliate Marketing on YouTube
YouTube has over 2 billion monthly active users, so it’s a great platform to use for affiliate marketing.
People visit YouTube for a number of reasons, from searching for help and information on a particular problem, to pure entertainment purposes.
Since YouTube has such a diverse user base, it’s a great platform to promote pretty much any niche.
By using YouTube, you can create helpful and informative content on various topics on your niche. If your content is helpful, then you’ll soon start to build an audience who subscribe to your channel.
Affiliate marketing is a great way to monetize your content without compromising the quality of the videos.
YouTube’s terms of service allow you to place an affiliate link in the description of your video, but you’ll need to use a link shortener like bit.ly in order to do so. However, you’ll make more money as an affiliate marketer if instead, you place the URL to the landing page of your affiliate bridge funnel in the description.
There are a number of different types of content you can create for YouTube. Here are some great ideas for affiliate marketing purposes:
- How-to videos
- Step-by-step guide videos
- Product review videos
- X product vs Y product videos
- Best X (product) for Y (purpose) videos
Creating an informative and helpful videos like ‘how to’s’ and ‘step-by-step guides’ will often help you get more subscribers to your channel. On the other hand, product review videos will usually make you more money.
That’s not to say you can’t monetize ‘how to’ and ‘guide’ videos, you absolutely can. But for a solid affiliate marketing strategy, you should to create both types of content.
If you’re starting affiliate marketing with no money, then you will, of course, be keen to make money. So starting with a few product review videos first off will help you get some traction.
When you publish your videos you can also add up to five “end card” links in each video. These cards will appear at the end of your video and link to either another one of your videos, or your landing page. This is a great way to help keep people watching more of your videos and consuming your content.
YouTube works well to convert affiliate offers because the videos bring a level of trust, especially if the video shows your face. So, before you start promoting affiliate products on YouTube, make sure you have researched the products in advance so you know what you’re talking about.
It’s important to make YouTube videos with good lighting and sound quality. If you have no money to get started, then you can use Loom to record your videos for free. However, as soon as you start making some money, then I highly recommend you invest in your video production.
Most good video software out there is expensive and difficult to use, and video editing can be tricky. However, one exception to that rule is StoryXPress. It’s a great video recording and editing platform that’s easy to use, and pricing starts as low as $10 per month.
When you’re creating your videos, don’t be afraid to be controversial, it’s great for getting more views. However, if you want to make money with affiliate marketing and build a loyal following, you should be honest about your experiences with products.
You should also mention that you’re an affiliate marketer for the products you recommend in your video. Don’t be too salesy. It’s best to be informative and show your audience what you love.
Remember that YouTube is a search engine, so be sure to optimize your videos by placing your keywords in your video title and in the description area of your video.
Platform #2: Affiliate Marketing on Pinterest
Pinterest is another great platform to use if you’re doing affiliate marketing with no money behind you to invest.
Pinterest is one of the most popular social platforms in the world, with 478 million monthly users as of 2021. However, if you’re going to use Pinterest for affiliate marketing, then bear in mind that on average, 6 out of every 10 users are female.
So, if you’re in a niche that has high appeal for women, then you can potentially make a lot of money on Pinterest as an affiliate.
By posting interesting images known as Pins on the Pinterest platform, people can search the Pinterest network and discover your pins. You can include an affiliate link with your Pins and send people directly to an affiliate offer. However, I recommend using the URL of your bridge funnel with your Pins instead of a naked affiliate link. This way you can also build your email list while making affiliate sales.
Like Google and YouTube, Pinterest is also a search engine. This means that you can use keywords with your Pins to increase visibility. When someone searches the Pinterest database, you will have a greater chance of your Pins being discovered if you have included your keywords in the title and description of your Pins.
The other reason why this is so great is that your Pins can potentially rank for keywords for months or even years, similar to how a blog post can rank in the Google search results. Over time, as you publish more Pins, you will have more assets pointing free, organic traffic to your bridge funnel.
Compare this to the length of time social posts get visibility on other platforms like Facebook (avg. 6 hrs) and Twitter (avg. 15 mins) – you can quickly see why Pinterest has huge potential for affiliate marketing.
For a step-by-step guide on how to use Pinterest, see this ClickBank article on Pinterest affiliate marketing.
Platform #3: Affiliate Marketing on TikTok
When using TikTok to start affiliate marketing with no money, it’s important to be aware of the demographics of the platform.
The latest stats on TikTok demographics as of January 2022 curated by Brian Dean at Backlinko state that around 25% of active US TikTok accounts are owned by people between the ages of 10-19.
Hmm, that doesn’t sound great if I’m looking to make money on TikTok?!
But wait, if you’re thinking that TikTok is just for kids, then you’d be wrong.
Brian goes on to state that 22.9% of US TikTok’ers are aged between 20-29, 21.7% are between 30-39, and as much as 20.3% of users are between 40-49.
Phew! Still with me?
I hope so, because there are lots of affiliates who are absolutely crushing it right now using TikTok to promote all kinds of products, from business and marketing services to cosmetics, kitchenware, laptops, projectors, and even security systems for houses!
That being said, before jumping in to this platform, it’s important to make sure that your products and affiliate offers appeal to the demographic.
Since the average TikTok video lasts between 15 and 60 seconds, it’s not too hard to create content for this platform.
Once a person watches your TikTok video, if they like what you’re about, then they’ll visit your profile. You can also direct them to visit your profile in your video.
The trick here is to dress up your profile to let people know what you’re about. You can include a website link in your profile (your bridge funnel landing page), and label it with a clear call to action to entice the visitor to click your link.
If you’re going to use this channel, then expect to post a new video at least once per day. Note that the top affiliates on TikTok are posting around 4 videos per day on average.
The more content you have on TikTok, the more followers you will be able to build up. The TikTok platform doesn’t allow you to post text or images. If you want to interact with your followers, you can add links to your other social profiles and interact with them there.
If you’re creative, then you can also create your own trend and use it to promote your affiliate offer. If your video is already viral, create your own by creating an entertaining duet to the video. This can earn you a lot of money if you do it right. This method can be used on other platforms, including YouTube and Instagram.
The appeal of TikTok affiliate marketing for marketers is the rate at which the platform has grown over the years, and the potential for videos to go viral. The possibilities are exciting!
Besides entertainment and music videos, TikTok also offers videos on topics like home DIY, pets, marketing, make money online, finance, and fitness, to name but a few.
clickbank affiliate marketing for beginners
Step 1: Sign Up for a ClickBank Account
One of the coolest things about ClickBank is, you can go from ZERO experience to having your first affiliate link in just 15 minutes!
Seriously, go ahead and set a timer! I bet we can get there.
First, you’ll need to sign up for a free ClickBank account. It’s super easy – just go to the signup page and enter your country, name, phone number, email address, and a password!
ClickBank account signup
(If you want more help with signing up, please visit this account signup support article. Or click for a deeper dive into how ClickBank works here.)
Once your account is created, you’re ready to start promoting products and making money. This is where the fun REALLY begins!
Step 2: Find a ClickBank Product to Promote
The ClickBank interface can be a little intimidating at first, so let’s just focus on a few quick things you’ll need to get going.
First of all, after signing up, you’ll land in your main account dashboard. Front and center, you can see any earnings you have for the current week. As you make money with ClickBank, you’ll see this area populate with earnings data across any of the products you’ve sold for ClickBank vendors.
ClickBank account dashboard – earnings
In the sidebar on the left, you can also see links to several other places.
ClickBank account sidebar
For now, let’s focus on the marketplace – the one with that little store icon.
ClickBank affiliate marketplace icon
Or if you go into your own user account from the main dashboard, you can also find the marketplace at the top of the page here:
ClickBank marketplace in nav menu
ClickBank marketplace in the master account navigation menu.
So, now that we’ve navigated to the ClickBank marketplace, let’s have a look around!
ClickBank affiliate marketplace dashboard
The ClickBank affiliate marketplace is a great way to start affiliate marketing!
The ClickBank affiliate marketplace is actually pretty straightforward, because there’s really only one goal here: finding a product to promote.
And how do you do that? There are two main ways to find a product:
Method 1: In the sidebar on the left, you’ll see a big list of product categories, which then open up into subcategories of different product types. These make it easy to find products based on the niche (or topic) that you’ve chosen for your business.
(Don’t worry if you’re not sure about a niche yet – we’ll cover that in a bit.)
Method 2: Another way to find a good product is to skip the categories and just browse “all products” instead. To do that, hit the little magnifying glass search button at the top to see every marketplace product in a list – by default, the results will be sorted by Rank.
official clickbank marketplace
Products listed on the official ClickBank affiliate marketplace.
It’s easy to set filters and other attributes to find products that meet your needs, such as Gravity score, average $/conversion, and date added – plus attributes like whether the product is physical or digital or what language it’s in.
Don’t worry too much about all that for now – it’s just a quick overview of how you’ll be able to search the marketplace for that perfect product.
Now, let’s look at a product listing!
Step 3: Analyze a ClickBank Product Listing
At the time of this writing, the #1 product in the ClickBank marketplace (by Rank) is Okinawa Flat Belly Tonic, a health offer for weight loss.
In this product listing, you’ll see the description of the product, an affiliate page, a support contact, and some key stats.
In addition to the product category, one of the most important points here is the initial $/conversion number of $143.01.
This stat means that EACH time you get a sale, you can expect to earn more than $140 as a commission. The Flat Belly Tonic product also offers a commission on rebills (when a customer orders the product again), so you can even make residual income from it!
The other major stat we should touch on is the Gravity score (Grav.).
What is Gravity Score?
Every product on the ClickBank marketplace has its own gravity score, but what does this number actually mean?
Here’s our official definition:
The ClickBank Gravity Score is a performance metric used to measure the sales momentum of offers on the ClickBank affiliate marketplace. Over a 12-week rolling period, the ClickBank Gravity Score calculates how many unique affiliates are making commissions on a particular offer, with a higher emphasis on more recent product sales.
In other words, Gravity is a snapshot of how many sales a product has been getting lately, and from how many affilaites. A high Gravity score – like the enormous 510 we see with Flat Belly Tonic – means it’s on FIRE, with approximately 500 different affiliates getting at least one sale of the product in the last three months!
A high Gravity score proves that the product can convert (ie get sales), but it also indicates a LOT of competition from other affiliates for that same product. You’ll have to decide what level of Gravity is a good fit for your approach as an affiliate – but honestly, when you’re first starting out, it can make sense to pick one with a more modest score in the 20-100 range.
Now that you understand where to find products and what some of these stats mean, it’s time for us to create our first HopLink!
Step 4: Create an Affiliate Tracking Link (HopLink)
As we’ve touched on so far, you get a commission when someone clicks your special tracking link and then purchases a product you’ve promoted. At ClickBank, we call this affiliate tracking URL a “HopLink.”
You’ll need a hoplink to make money with ClickBank as an affiliate. Fortunately, it couldn’t be easier to generate a new link!
In this case, we can make a link for Flat Belly Tonic. All we have to do is hit that big “Promote” button on the product listing.
Quick Side Note: If you’ve been following along up until now and haven’t created an account nickname, you’ll have to do that before you can create a HopLink. Just switch over to your main account dashboard and find the “person” icon shown below.
Create ClickBank account nickname
Then, hit “Create an Account” and enter a new nickname. You can have multiple account nicknames tied to your general ClickBank account, which can be helpful if you want one as a seller and one as an affiliate, for example.
After hitting “Promote,” we’ll see the HopLink Generator for this product. All you have to do is enter your chosen account nickname and an optional Tracking ID (not necessary for now), and then hit the “Create HopLink” button.
The ClickBank HopLink Generator allows you to create affiliate tracking links!
ClickBank’s HopLink Generator will immediately generate a new HopLink that’s tied to your account nickname right below.
The HopLink you generate can be copied and pasted to make you affiliate commissions!
You can easily copy the HopLink by hitting that little button on the right or highlighting and copying the actual text in the field.
And that’s your first HopLink! Way to go!
I usually save my HopLinks in the Notes app on my MacBook so that it’s easy to keep track of them, but don’t worry if you lose track of your special link – you can always go back and generate a new one.
With a HopLink ready to go, we have one more step before we can make money: getting traffic!
Step 5: Get Traffic to Your Affiliate Link
In the realm of online marketing, “traffic” is a catch-all term referring to a volume of users or site visitors.
The two pieces of any successful online marketing campaign are traffic and conversion:
Traffic gets people where you want them to go!
Conversion moves them from prospects into customers!
So as you can see, getting traffic is VERY important.
The nice thing about being an affiliate is, you only have one job to focus on: sending traffic over to someone else’s sales page. As long as you get the right traffic and pick a high-converting offer, you can make money and without worrying about the conversion part!
How to Get Traffic (Free vs Paid!)
Now, the question is: “How do I get traffic?”
Everyone always asks us this question – and it’s probably something you’re wondering too!
Well, there are two main categories of traffic: free and paid.
To understand this, think of a highway with a destination that you’re heading toward. Along the road, you can choose to drive a modest Toyota Corolla that’s affordable and reliable, but slower. Or you can hop into a fancy Ferrari that’s a lot more expensive, but also gets you where you want to go much faster.
free traffic or paid traffic example
You decide how to get where you’re going: Free traffic vs paid traffic!
That’s basically the difference between free traffic and paid traffic. They BOTH will move you to the same destination, which is sending users to pages containing your affiliate links so they can click through, make a purchase, and earn you a commission.
But which should you choose? It ultimately comes down to personal preference: how fast do you want to get there (and how much money do you want to spend along the way)?
There’s no right or wrong answer here. In fact, many of the best marketers choose “all of the above,” because free and paid traffic sources each have their merits! But as a beginner, it can make sense to start with free traffic to build a foundation before moving on to paid sources.
Now, let’s briefly cover a few of these traffic sources you can use to start making affiliate commissions.
3 Examples of Free Traffic
When it comes to free traffic, a better term to describe it is “organic traffic.”
As inexpensive as these sources of traffic are, they aren’t 100% free – but most of what you pay is in time and effort, not money.
Another way to think of free traffic is more “relationship-oriented.” Often, you’re getting traffic through these techniques by building a brand and fostering a community – a two-way relationship with your audience.
Here are the top 3 free traffic sources to be thinking about for your affiliate business!
1) Google search
One of the fundamental “free” sources of traffic is Google search, which you can take advantage of by building an affiliate website or blog. When you do keyword research, you can find both informational and commercial keywords related to the affiliate products you want to promote.
Google search – free traffic source
This approach works much better for narrower niche topics – you’ll have a tough time getting enough organic traffic in a HUGE niche like weight loss to depend on it for your business. But it can still be worthwhile to have a “home base” for your brand, and any amount of organic traffic you don’t have to pay for is a nice bonus!
Learn more with these basic SEO tips.
2) Social media
Another great free source of traffic is social media – think Facebook posts, Facebook Groups, YouTube videos, Pinterest pins, tweets, LinkedIn posts, Reddit threads, Instagram Stories, and so on.
There are so many different social sites where you can get free traffic that it’s difficult to narrow it down sometimes. Here’s my advice: when in doubt, start with Facebook and YouTube. If you do anything where you’re selling to businesses or professionals, add LinkedIn to the mix. If you’re targeting millennials or younger users, consider Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok.
By producing content for social platforms, you can get in front of your ideal audience – and in many cases, you can post affiliate links there directly!
Another fantastic source of free traffic is email marketing.
Your audience knows that subscribing to your email list means they’re going to be sold sometimes – but if you focus on adding insane value to your emails, most people are fine with the occasional pitch.
The challenge with email is building the list in the first place. Obviously, paid ads are a big help here, but if you want to do it for free only, many marketers grow their list with a blog featuring opt-in forms. If you don’t have your own website, a closed Facebook Group in your niche is another great free option, or try adding the subscribe link to your YouTube video descriptions.
You can even use live, in-person events like conferences and trade shows to sign up new people! Learn more about affiliate email marketing here.
And to find out more about the difference sources of free traffic, check out our guide to free traffic here.
3 Examples of Paid Traffic
The counterpart to free traffic is paid traffic.
This is like the Ferrari on the freeway. It has the potential to get you where you want to go a lot faster – as long as you know how to handle it, of course!
To get results with paid ads, you’ll need to spend dollars to get the ads in front of an audience that’s receptive to your message.
Another way to think of paid traffic is more “transaction-oriented.” Often, you’re getting traffic by appearing in someone’s social media feed or before their YouTube video and trying to grab their attention.
For many affiliates, the entire job is crafting ads that get cold traffic to an offer – and trying to make more money in affiliate commissions then they spend on ads. Here are the top 3 paid traffic sources that your affiliate business might use!
The holy grail of paid ads is still Facebook, though it’s not without its fair share of headaches, such as your ads manager account getting shut down or your ad getting denied. This has been happening to six and seven figure media buyers as well!
On the plus side, Facebook has a massive user base, tons of data, sophisticated AI, and strong tracking tools through the Pixel. Facebook Ads allow you to micro-target a set of users with a highly specific offer. These days, it’s also common to set up an affiliate bridge page to route your cold Facebook traffic.
To learn more about running Facebook Ads, check out our Max Finn Spark course here.
Native ad networks like Taboola and Outbrain have really taken off in the last few years, and for good reason: they give you a lot of the benefits of a platform like Facebook, but without a lot of the problems.
So, what are native ads? A native ad is a display ad that appears on a website and blends in with the other content on the page. When a user clicks it, they’re taken to your content.
Because native ads are displayed on popular websites instead of on a central social media platform (like Facebook), you have more leeway in your choice of messaging, creative, and landing page. It’s also a beginner-friendly option for getting into the world of media buying.
YouTube Ads are a solid way to build your YouTube channel or bring an engaged audience into your email list.
There are different types of ads on YouTube, so you’ll want to play around with them to find the format that’s best for you. For pre-roll ads, you should make sure your messaging is front-loaded and can hook viewers in the first 5 seconds.
Discovery ads are another good option – they can work well once you see which of your videos the audience is engaging with the most. Then, create subscriber magnets by seeing which of your videos perform the best, and paying to appear in relevant search terms to grow your audience.
For more information on growing and monetizing a YouTube channel, check out our post on how to make money on YouTube.
How to Promote Your HopLink
So, you’ve gotten a nice overview of different free and paid traffic opportunities, but where should you start? It’s easy to feel overwhelmed!
To be honest, ALL of these ideas are perfectly doable, so don’t feel like you can make a “wrong” choice.
But with that said, the consensus among most experts within the ClickBank community is to start out with email, paid ads, or both.
I would pick a decent offer in the marketplace, choose a paid ads platform and email service provider, and then focus on making that offer and marketing strategy work for 3-6 months before you make a change.
You’ll learn a LOT about what works and what doesn’t if you give it enough time. Nobody masters marketing overnight!
Step 6: Monitor Your Metrics
By now, you’ve chosen a traffic source and are pointing it at your tracking link (HopLink), which is hosted on a bridge page.
As an affiliate marketer, your next job is to collect data as soon as you start sending traffic. You should start looking at some specific numbers that tell the story of what’s working. These metrics will help you decide which methods (and offers) are worth investing your time and money in.
And the FIRST place to look for metrics is the traffic source(s) you’re using!
Metrics for Email
For email, you can track key performance indicators (KPIs) like:
affiliate email marketing metrics
These numbers help you see how an individual email performed in driving traffic to an offer.
Over time, you’ll establish a benchmark for how your emails tend to perform – and can continue to test new subject lines and content angles to beat your previous best. You can even segment your lists to drive highly targeted offers to different audiences!
Metrics for Facebook
For Facebook Ads, you’ll look at metrics like cost per click (CPC) and conversion rate. The main goal with Facebook is to get more clicks to your landing page at the lowest possible price, and secondarily, for the landing page to route people over to the offer.
Metrics for Facebook
A good paid ads campaign involves a lot of testing and optimizing to ensure you’re using the most effective headline, copy, and creative for a given audience.
To learn more about how to navigate Facebook Ads, read our recent post about the iOS 14 update.
Overall Affiliate Marketing Metrics
The traffic source numbers are good topline metrics to monitor, but the most important affiliate marketing metrics are about your bottom line:
Earnings per click. The earnings per click (EPC) is a powerful metric for evaluating how much money you make – on average – for every click to a sales page. You can find this by dividing the amount of total sales by the total number of clicks on your tracking link to an offer. One reason this is helpful is because media buyers tend to measure their costs per click – so EPC is a quick way to compare the two numbers and see if you’re coming out ahead.
Refund/chargeback rate. It’s not as much fun to talk about, but if you’re on a RevShare model, you split the income generated from each sale with the seller – and you’ll both return that income if whenever a customer asks for a refund or chargeback. If your refunds and chargebacks are high (say 5%+), then you either need to pick a different offer or send more relevant traffic to the offer.
Total net earnings. How much money are you making overall, and how much do you keep after expenses? It’s easy to see total income right in the ClickBank dashboard, but you should account for your expenses to make sure you’re staying profitable.
With your eye on these metrics, you have the ability to double down on what’s working and pivot when something isn’t.
Honestly, data is what separates the average affiliates and the elite ones. Going back to our car metaphor, imagine driving down the freeway blind – you won’t even know if you’ve reached your destination that way!
Use data to make informed decisions in your business. Be prepared to test and optimize your campaigns. And don’t be afraid to scrap everything and try something new!
Step 7: Pivot or Double Down on Your Campaigns
Over time, it’ll be clear how successful your campaigns are – if you’re making MORE money than you spend, that’s a sign that things are working!
Seems pretty obvious.
But what if you’re NOT profitable yet? This could mean you need to do more testing and fine-tuning, or it could mean that you need go all the way back to the drawing board!
For most campaigns, it’s almost impossible to tell if it’s worked until you’ve sent traffic through and done some testing and optimizing along the way. For paid campaigns, that might be 10-14 days – for an SEO or email strategy, it could be 6-12 months!
There’s no easy answer here, but if you approach it methodically, you’ll be able to figure out where the problem lies.
In any affiliate marketing sales funnel, your prospects go through several stages (commonly referred to as AIDA):
Attention. Reach prospective buyers where they are through SEO, social media, paid ads, YouTube, etc. In this stage, you make them aware of your brand or offer.
Interest. Point visitors toward valuable content that explains a problem, while subtly nudging them toward the solutions you want them to know about. This could be a bridge page, landing page, blog post, YouTube video, etc.
Desire. Use emotion in your messaging to directly build up a strong desire for the product you’re promoting. You need to paint the picture of why your audience can’t live without this solution.
Action. Call on your audience to buy now (or opt in, etc.). This includes follow-ups via email or retargeting ads.
I bring up this funnel concept because you need to make sure your campaign is tracking along with these stages. Many affiliates jump too quickly from attention to action (ie “Nice to meet you… want to buy something?”).
If any stage in your sales funnel is leaky, you’ll lose traffic along the way – and you’ll have to decide whether to fix those stages of the buyer’s journey that aren’t working, or totally start over with a new niche or offer!
clickbank affiliate commission rate
Affiliate marketing is all the rage for building additional sources of income. And in fact, if you’re interested in affiliate marketing, one of the first (and trickiest) questions you’ll probably ask is, “How much do affiliate marketers make?”
So, let’s find out!
In one of our previous posts, we touched on whether affiliate marketing is worth it to begin with. Long story short: it depends on the affiliate marketer! If all the foundational pieces of your affiliate empire are in place, affiliate marketing is well worth it.
But affiliate marketers sometimes overestimate or underestimate the returns they can expect from their campaigns. Even if you’ve done everything right, you won’t know how successful your unique combination of niche, offer, and traffic channel actually is until you put it into practice.
But ballpark affiliate income figures can help you decide which path you should take – today’s blog post will help you do just that!
Join more than 117,000 affiliate marketers!
Get expert affiliate marketing insights delivered right to your inbox. Plus, subscribe now for a step-by-step guide to getting started on ClickBank!
How Much Do Affiliate Marketers Earn?
To start off, how much do affiliate marketers make?
Well, you probably already know that this question doesn’t have one exact answer.
The truth is, there is a LOT of money in the affiliate marketing and direct response world. In fact, this space routinely sees many affiliates making 5-figure, 6-figure and even 7-figure incomes in their affiliate marketing business.
At ClickBank, we’re uniquely positioned to see how much money people make, because we’re the merchant processor for millions of affiliate transactions every year. ClickBank has hundreds of Platinum affiliate marketers who earn more than $250k per year just on our platform.
Beyond that, we have an impressive number of Diamond affiliates who earn more than $5 million per year through affiliate marketing through ClickBank!
So, the real money made could be much, much higher. To get there, however, you need to have a plan!
FAQs Regarding Affiliate Marketing Income
Affiliate marketers can earn nothing, or millions of dollars, or virtually anything in between. But let’s get more specific about the income levels that most affiliate marketers can expect!
Here are some FAQs that new beginners have:
Does Experience as an Affiliate Impact Income?
Like any other profession, the income of beginners vs. advanced affiliates varies drastically. Authority Hacker’s Niall Roche suggests these distinct income brackets based on experience:
- Beginner – $0 to $1000 per month
- Intermediate – $1000 to $10,000 per month
- Advanced – $10k to $100k per month
- Super affiliate – $100k+ per month
This tracks closely to what how we categorize our affiliate customers on ClickBank, with Silvers (beginners) earning up to $25K annually, Golds (intermediates) earning up to $250K, Platinums (advanced) earning $250K and up, and Diamonds (super affiliates) earning more than $5 million per year!
If you’re interested in earning an income through affiliate marketing, you should set your expectations according to these income brackets, as they correspond pretty well to levels of success based on your experience.
And note that you likely won’t earn anything for the first few months unless you’re already experienced – that’s totally normal.
Patience is a virtue if you want to earn higher affiliate income. The more experience you have, the more your skills and performance will reflect in the money you earn as an affiliate!