Using PPC To Improve The Profits Of Your Affiliate Marketing Campaigns

Arlen Robinson • November 8, 2022

Using PPC To Improve The Profits Of Your Affiliate Marketing Campaigns

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Running an affiliate marketing campaign may seem easy. All you need to do is look a product that you can sell and then sell it, right? Well, the experience will teach you that it is more complicated than that. In fact, you may find yourself not getting a single sale if you do that. Affiliate marketing is more than just taking an affiliate link from a merchant’s account and selling their item. The field is highly competitive. You need to do more than that to make a sale.

Today, I will show you one of the quickest ways to drive traffic to your affiliate page so that you can get more conversions and sales. It is called PPC or pay-per-click marketing.

What is PPC?

What is PPC

PPC stands for per-per-click. It is where you pay a particular platform that shows your ads a set amount for every click. This means that you don’t pay for anything if your ad doesn’t get clicks. People should click on your link before you pay. This is different for PPL or pay-per-lead where you pay when someone signs up or buy or PPV or pay-per-view where you pay when someone views your ad.

Why Your Affiliate Campaign Need PPC

If you are running an affiliate campaign, you’ll most likely want to have some conversions. Each conversion will grant you a commission. So the more commissions you get, the more profitable your affiliate campaign will be.

Here are some reasons why you should use PPC:

1. Instant Traffic

PPC grants you instant traffic. Unlike other marketing methods that require you to wait for months before you see any traffic come in, PPC is instant. As you pay for each click, you are guaranteed that the platform owner will do his best to ensure that your ads are getting as many clicks as you need. Every click translates to traffic to your website.

2. Conversion Testing

You cannot test conversions if you don’t have traffic. You can only test a page or an ad if you run some traffic to it. With PPC, you can easily determine where the traffic is flowing and how they are interacting with your site. If you have set up some heat maps and analytics, you’ll get to understand your prospects a bit more.

3. Understand the Customer Better

If there’s one skill that you must master to become a better marketer, it is empathy. It is about learning to put yourself in the shoes of your customer and understanding where they are coming from. You need to know this so that you can structure your campaigns according to their desires. This will let your affiliate campaigns convert better.

NOTE: If you are planning to use PPC for the marketing of your affiliate page, be sure that you are not promoting a thin affiliate page or a bridge page. A thin affiliate page or bridge page is a page that delivers no value to the customer and just acts like a portal from the search engines to the main vendor’s website. Google doesn’t like this and they will flag your site if you do this. Be sure to create more than just a bridge page. Add a review. Compare the product with other websites. Add some bonuses. Be sure that it is worth the prospect’s time to visit your site.

For brands of different sizes, there’s pros & cons to using Google Ads but the biggest question be is if Google Ads are even worth it. Brands of all sizes might find it beneficial to advertise via Google Ads.

Other Benefits of PPC

However, the benefits of PPC are not limited to what it can do. Here are the other benefits that you can reap when you do PPC marketing.

Easier Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is the go-to marketing strategy for the new decade. It is because it is the most effective and is not affected by algorithm changes. Truly, building networks with influencers in your field is the most effective way to ensure that your brand remains on top for the years to come. However, doing influencer marketing is easier said than done. It is not like you can approach an influencer today and he will promote you without questions asked. You need to offer that influencer something in return. If you do PPC marketing, your website will already have some traffic. If an influencer finds your traffic to be valuable, he will be more open to working with you.

Lower Undesirable Metrics

We all have those undesirable metrics that we want to lower. It may be because you want to look more appealing to advertisers or you just want to increase your conversion rate. PPC can help you do this. Not only can you track your conversion metrics, but you can also tweak your campaigns according to the data you find. This will make it easier for you to lower metrics such as shopping cart abandonment and the likes.

How to Launch a PPC Campaign for Your Affiliate Marketing Site

How to Launch a PPC Campaign for Your Affiliate Marketing Site

Now that you know the benefits of having a PPC campaign for your affiliate site, it is time to launch your campaign. Here is a step-by-step guide on how you can do that.

STEP 1: Research Medium Tail Keywords

First, you must target some medium tail keywords.

Why medium tail keywords? Well, medium tail keywords are the keywords that a person will most likely key in when they search. Unlike short tail keywords and long tail keywords, medium tail keywords have more targeted searches. This means that the person searching has a higher chance of converting into a sale.

Here’s the problem with short tail keywords. Not only are they too general, but they are also very expensive. When you search for them using a keyword tool, you’ll find that has a ton of searches. But this comes with a catch. The catch is that each click is often so expensive that you’ll find yourself bankrupt before you get a sale. As a wise marketer, it is better to just stay safe and go for cheaper keywords.

As for long tail keywords, there are people who advocate their use for PPC. It is because they are fairly cheap and they convert better. The problem is the number of searches can be very low. You’ll find that you’ll hardly get any traffic from PPC if you just focus on this.

Because of this, it is better to stay on the middle ground and just go for medium tail keywords. This way, you get the best of both worlds. You get the cheaper rate of long tails and the traffic of short tails.

To research medium tail keywords, you may need to experiment a bit. If you own an e-commerce website, you may need to look at what people are searching for. You’ll know this if you have been doing your analytics tracking since day 1. This will show you the keywords that your prospects are using to find your site.

Another thing to consider is the keyword variations of your products. You’ll need this if you want to know the exact keywords that customers are looking for. It can also contribute to your sales. You may need to work with different types of keywords before you find the ones worth bidding for. These are the keywords that have crazy conversions with a low cost-per-click (CPC).

STEP 2: Create Your Ads

Keywords are only one part of your PPC campaign. You also need to create your ads. Beginner PPC marketers would often focus too much on keywords when they create their ads. But this is a mistake. You’ll want your ads to be inviting. Thinking about your prospects and create your ads based on their needs.

For example, you may be selling a funny bag on your e-commerce website. Instead of promoting it with the brand name and the description, you can say ‘make your loved ones laugh with this fun bag. The perfect gift for any occasion.’ It is not about describing the bag and using the keywords. It is about creating an inviting ad that will intrigue your customers and get them clicking.

NOTE: You may need to learn about copywriting to fully master this. After all, learning to sell through the written word doesn’t happen overnight. But it will get better with practice.

ANOTHER NOTE: Not good with copywriting? No problem! You can always hire someone to create your ad for you. And if you’re lucky, they may even do the keyword research for you as well.

STEP 3: Launch and Tweak

Now that you have your keywords and ads, it is time to launch your PPC campaign. But the process doesn’t end here. In fact, you’ll find that you have to continuously do steps 3 to 5 of this process to fully fine-tune your PPC campaign.

It is advisable that you launch 3 ads in the beginning. You can lower your ad spend per day to keep it manageable. This is so you can gather enough data about your market.

NOTE: The beginning of a PPC campaign is usually an experimental stage. Many enter the world of PPC thinking that it can give them instant results. But there’s no magic pill here. You need to do your experiment for every niche and every website is different. What worked for one PPC marketer may not necessarily work for you so you need to do your own testing to find out.

ANOTHER NOTE: You may need to set aside at least $100 for testing. If you have more money, then that’s better. This is so you can gather keyword information from your visitors. This will allow you to see which keywords are performing and which you should remove. Testing is essential for a successful PPC campaign.

STEP 4: Track Keywords

The success of your PPC campaign will depend on the performance of the keywords in your portfolio. It is not about gathering as many keywords as you can. It is about gathering keywords that have a considerable amount of searches but have low cost-per-click.

It is important that you are on the lookout for keywords that may be performing well but is not in your portfolio. You can discover this as you look at your analytics to see the keywords that are being used by the customer but is not yet in your portfolio.

STEP 5: Track Results

More than keyword performance, you should look at the results. By results, I refer to more than the traffic boost in your page. I also refer to the sales you make. At the end of the day, you are promoting an affiliate program not to get more traffic or gather keywords. You are promoting an affiliate campaign to earn some commissions. You can only do that if you track them. This way, you’ll know whether or not your PPC campaign is working.

Traffic at your Fingertips

PPC is powerful because it grants you the power to generate traffic at your fingertips. Just research some keywords, plug them in, set a budget, and wait for the traffic to come in. Unlike the old ‘publish and pray’ approach in blogging and content marketing, PPC works. This is because you are not praying but paying for your traffic.

Can PPC make you a successful affiliate? Well, PPC only generates traffic. It is still up to you to retain that prospect’s attention and convert them into a sale. If your affiliate page looks lousy and you don’t provide excellent customer support, you may not get commissions. As with all businesses, you must ensure that the entire process is working. PPC helps you in the marketing part but it is still up to you to take care of the rest.

Still, PPC marketing is the fastest way to generate traffic to any affiliate site. You don’t need connections or subscribers to gain market traction. You just need to know the keywords and market that you are targeting and you are ready to go. Plus, it is not that hard to learn. In fact. PPC platforms will take you through the process step-by-step. It just helps if you have some SEO, keyword research and marketing knowledge to begin. This will ensure that your campaigns will have a higher chance of success.

Remember, we’re here to help in-house teams overcome the challenges of implementing an effective SEO strategy.

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Arlen Robinson

Founder, OSI Affiliate Software

Arlen Robinson is the co-founder and VP of Business Development at OSI Affiliate Software.

He is also the host of The Ecommerce Marketing Podcast where he discusses marketing strategies with experts from all over the world.

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