The most important stage in an affiliate campaign is optimizing.
In your typical affiliate marketing campaign:
1. You launch
2. Probably lose some money while you collect conversion data.
3. Then based on the data, you start optimizing (you run different tests)
4. Keep repeating this until you profit.
Read This: How to Launch an Affiliate Marketing Campaign
There’s one big problem sometimes: What if you launch a campaign and there’s NO CONVERSION DATA?
It happens sometimes.
The whole point of “optimizing” is to split-test different parts of your campaign. How can you tell which landing page is working if nothing’s converting?
Here are some things that go through my mind if that happens:
1. Are you testing enough offers?
The biggest mistake I see people make is they don’t test enough offers.
They have a $500 budget and go “all-in” with one offer and one GEO.
You need to test multiple options from the beginning. As many as you can afford. When I launch a campaign I think about fishing.
Guys that focus on one offer = guy with a single fishing pole
Guys that test multiple options from the beginning = boat with a huge net
Who’s going to catch more fish?
The more the better. How many Charles? Depends on your budget.
Remember that the payouts don’t matter. Don’t get sucked into a “payout” battle. Imagine you’re about to run an offer.
Network A: Has one for $5.50
Network B: Has one for $5.00
Network C: Has one for $4.50
The mistake low-level affiliates make is they only run the $5.50 one because it has the highest payout. They don’t bother testing. They assume.
When in reality the $4.50 could be making more money because it converts higher.
You’re running the $5.50 offer and it’s horrible. You don’t have a clue because you don’t have benchmarks to compare it to.
Read This: Here’s Why Your Offer’s Not Converting
2. Are You Running on the Right Country?
You’d be surprised at how many campaigns can literally not convert on one GEO, but be 100%+ on another.
There are so many factors involved:
* The processing in that country may be horrible
* The angle may work in one country, but not in another
* The QUALITY of the traffic from the source can differ
Read This: Here’s What’s Missing in Your International Campaigns
3. Do you have enough DATA?
A simple rule is the higher the CPA payout, the harder it is to convert.
What if you’re running a $55 cost per sale item
You spent $500
and there’s no conversions?
Not really surprising…those offers are harder to convert. That means you need to spend more and put more work in to get them profitable. (The rewards are there if you make it happen though)
If you’re newbie or on a smaller budget, go for offers that are easier to convert. I know those high payouts look sexy, but you’re not at that level yet.
You need to focus on running as many tests as possible and becoming a better affiliate marketer. The money will come.
Read This: Why You’re Making Bad Campaign Decisions
4. The Traffic Source Just Sucks
I hate to say this one because most of the time it isn’t the case. If a campaign isn’t going your way then it’s easy to use the traffic source as a cop-out.
But the truth is there are a LOT of horrible traffic sources out there. What isn’t being said is that a lot of traffic sources just have bad traffic.
Their publishers could be sending low quality, or even fake traffic. In that case, it can become a game where you have to spend money to weed out the diamonds from the dirt.
That’s why I tell people to focus on proven traffic sources. It always boggles my mind when I hear some affiliates say “Facebook doesn’t work.”
It works for millions of other people…maybe you targeting sucks.
Read This: The Traffic Source Doesn’t Suck…You Suck
Remember…You’re a Scientist
I know affiliate marketing can be frustrating.
Just keep it simple.
Just keep launching.
Just keep testing.
If things aren’t going your way, don’t get emotional.
Go into problem-solving mode and ask yourself why? Form hypothesises. Keep running experiments. Until one day, the profits turn to green.
Don’t make the mistake of mis-reading the data. It’s dangerous.
The traffic source could be AMAZING, but you concluded it sucks. In reality, the campaign didn’t work because your angle / targeting was weak.
This horrible decision making process could carry on for years and cost you tons of profitable campaigns.
If a campaign’s not working…figure out why it isn’t.
Featured Image by Aleksei Veprev