Clickbank or Amazon?

I get this question like crazy from my friends who learned to do affilaite marketing from me:

As an affiliate would you rather promote Amazon Kindle or Clickbank ebooks?

As a beginner with Amazon associate programs you get 4% commission on each sale, after the seventh sale you get 6% … even if you are making a ton of sales each month … still you get 8.5% commission. Given that each kindle book sells for an average of $10, that’s 40-85 cents per sale. Is it at all worth it?

To make the picture a little more clearer, we are comparing with Clickbank equivalent where you get on average 50% commission on stuff that sell for $40 on average. This is a whole different animal here.

Still the picture is not clear.

You also need to know that when people visit Amazon.com whatever they buy from the site you get commission on it. So if you send them to an ebook about cars and they end up buying a sweatshirt you still get the commission. Clickbank products, on the other hand, only give you commission if this particular item sells. If they buy something else even if it is another clickbank product you get nothing.

Another factor to consider is that Amazon is a trusted marketplace, while Clickbank products are individuals with different, and definitely inferior to Amazon.com in terms of reputation. This makes a difference in conversion rates within the 10-fold range. Amazon’s product pages are designed to convert, while this conversion ability of Clickbank products varies greatly from product to another, but never as good as Amazon’s.

Finally, there is another factor that makes a huge difference on your decision whether to promote an Amazon Kindle ebook or comparable item from Clickbank. It’s the availability of Amazon’s associate program in your country or state. Some states and some countries’ residents are not allowed to join Amazon’s associate program because of the kind of taxes and paper work required from Amazon every time they issue you a commission check.

I hope you can decide on your own now, but as a beginner and when possible I recommend that you start with Amazon. Little by little your commission checks will grow bigger. At the same time track and split test your conversions. I have some sites that make me way more money from Clickbank products than when I had only Amazon links on them. Eventually I removed Amazon links completely from those sites.

Other sites are only making me money from Amazon and the Clickbank product I was promoting on them never converted. It all comes down to testing.

 

Share

Affiliate Marketing 101: ClickBank Gravity: High Or Low?

In the last post I wrote about how to promote just any product starting with the product itself. The example I took was GDI because it was the most common question I received. Although GDI is not dead, and still people are able to get new sign ups. it is not an attractive affiliate program anymore. In fact, I don’t see it going anywhere better unless they consider enhancing their product.

Today’s post is about promoting clickbank products starting from the product. There are several factors involved in evaluating the product before you start promoting it. In this post I’ll focus on the gravity index because the debate about it is very controversial.

First, what is ClickBank Gravity Index

Gravity: Number of distinct affiliates who earned a commission by referring a paying customer to the vendor’s products. This is a weighted sum and not an actual total. For each affiliate paid in the last 8 weeks we add an amount between 0.1 and 1.0 to the total. The more recent the last referral, the higher the value added.

That’s the definition given by clickbank itself. As you see it can be taken as an indicator of the sell-ability of any product, and also as an indicator of the competition. The higher the number the bigger the competition.

So, for a product with a gravity index of 400 you are competing with between 400 and 4000 other competitor, while for a gravity of 40 you are competing between 40 and 400 other affiliates.

When I first started I listened to a guest in one of Mike Filsaime’s workshops who was talking about competition and how one can see it like a big wave, if you stand in the way you’ll definitely get wet. So are niches with high competition. If you promote products in this niche you’ll definitely make some money. But he ignored the Return On Investment. You could make money in competitive niches, but if your ROI is negative the net result is losing money.

How I see competitive niches is totally different. I see it as a race in a funnel. With a certain number of racers they can move freely and pass one another without being hurt or damaged. The higher the number the harder it is for new racers to get through to the front line without being hurt or even completely destroyed.

So, to pick a niche (not a product) from clickbank I do the following:

  1. When I consider a niche I calculate the sum of gravity indexes of all of the products in that niche. If too high I go for subniches unitl I find a sum of gravity indexes below 100.
  2. The next step is test the competition. I check for adwords ads for those or similar products. If I find between 3-10 ads I pick that subniche.
  3. Keyword research comes next. If the first position for the most relevant keyword costs $1 or less per click I start a direct link test campaign. If it converts I scale it up with more keywords and ad copies, and go for building the three types of websites for it: the blog, the review site, and the lead capture page. If not I pause it for now and test something else.

And because this is what I do for living, I do it every day. Every single day I start a new campaign as described above.

That’s it for today, have a good day.

Share