In this vid, I’m going to talk about different traffic sources that affiliate marketers use, and what the pros and cons of each of them are.
My brother and I, have been running paid traffic for about 7 years and we’ve tried pretty much everything, so we have really good insight as far as what the pros and cons are of the different traffic sources.
#1: Free traffic
- This is something that doesn’t cost advertising money to build — like a blog or Instagram. Free traffic can be a really good way for somebody that doesn’t have any money to start generating traffic — whether through the blog, or an Instagram account, etc.
- Definitely consider that it’s really not free. The amount of sweat equity that you need to put into generating that traffic and putting that content out there matters. If you have to spend 10 hours a day just to write the blog posts or do Instagram posts, then it’s not actually free.
Free traffic should be done in conjunction with some of the other strategies that we’re going to be talking about here.
#2: Facebook ads
I could talk about FB for hours — there are so many pros and cons to running on the platform.
- The biggest pro is the targeting capabilities at Facebook and just how smart of an ad platform it is. Peter and I, we’ve been able to make money on Facebook in dozens of different verticals that we really didn’t know much about before we started. But we were able to become successful just by using Facebook’s really advanced targeting options and using our marketing knowledge to come up with the right messaging to put it in front of the right audience.
- A lot of people who are running Facebook nowadays, their biggest struggle is with accounts. Facebook has so many issues right now with their whole process of reviewing ads and banning accounts, it’s really just gotten way out of hand. If you’re a Facebook marketer, you’re probably going to be spending most of your time just trying to figure out what accounts to run your ads on versus actually doing the marketing.
Facebook is a really powerful ad network, and you can get amazing results on it. It can also be very scalable, too. We’ve seen our campaigns be able to scale up to astronomical levels, with just Facebook traffic alone.
#3: Native Ads
Peter and I have started to explore it more this year. They have become more popular in the past couple of years. Native ads are basically if you’re on Forbes or CNN, and you’re scrolling down the screen, you’ll see an ad that kind of looks like an article. But it’s not an article. It’s usually an advertorial or links out to another content site, etc. But it’s just an ad.
Native Ads have – same with Facebook or free traffic – pros and cons.
- Native Ads can be more stable than Facebook campaigns: you’re not going to be getting your account shut down left and right. Native ads — at least the native ad networks that I’ve worked with, like Taboola — can be very, very helpful as far as telling you why your ads are getting disapproved, and they won’t just ban your account without telling you the reason.
- Longevity. Once you nail a campaign on Native, there can be a little bit more longevity than other traffic sources. If you’re getting a certain result one day, you’re not going to wake up and get no results the next day.
- Scale. There’s also a lot of scale to these ads. Once you really nail a campaign on native ads, it’s really possible to spend 10s of thousands of dollars a day on the traffic source, similar to Facebook.
- More control. Native ads are a lot more hands-on in that you can control every aspect of the ad network. With Facebook, for example, it’s all done with machine learning algorithms. With Native, there are still some algorithms in play, but for the most part, you have complete control over what sites your ads are running on, what your bids are, what your creatives are whatever. You have full control over 90% of the stuff on the ad network, whereas Facebook likes to take everything into their own hands, go and find the right audience for you without really telling you where it’s really being ran, etc.
- Native is a little bit more transparent, manual and hands-on with traffic source.
- It can be extremely competitive.
- It can also be very expensive to run campaigns.
Generally, when you’re testing out on Native, you need to test hundreds of different sites that your ads are going to run on, and usually, you need to spend at least 1.5 times your CPA. So, if you have an offer that pays $50, usually you need to spend about $75 per site to be able to tell if that site’s going to convert or not. Now, granted, there are other tricks that you can do to cut that down. For example, if the site’s just sending tons of clicks, and nothing is clicking through on your landing page, you can block it.
There are definitely some downsides to Native, but maybe not as many as other traffic sources. It can be very costly to run ads on Native.
#4: Google search and Display Traffic
Google traffic is probably one of the highest quality traffic sources online. The reason? It’s intention-based marketing. When somebody sees your ad on Google, it’s because they were searching for whatever your ad is for — unless your targeting is messed up.
But if you’re running ads for a dog product, and people are searching for dog product and they see your ad, it’s going to be much more high quality than if somebody was just scrolling through CNN and they see some random ad for something they may not even be interested in.
Google Display can be very high quality as well because you can get pretty nitty-gritty with your targeting options. The downsides for running Google — especially as an affiliate — or doing lead generation is just the strictness. Google is probably the strictest traffic source for affiliate marketing.
If you’re considering running ads on Google, you may want to consider another alternative, maybe like Bing traffic as Bing isn’t as strict as Google, and the traffic quality is still very high on Bing.
A downside for Bing traffic is that the traffic can be very low volume. You might nail an ad campaign, but you might only be able to spend $100 a day on that campaign.
There are a handful more traffic sources like YouTube, PPV, etc. We might cover the rest in Part 2.
Let me know if you got value out of this or any questions you may have, and I’d be happy to answer in the comments.
I hope this was helpful for you guys!