Is ClickBank Affiliate Marketing Worthwhile?
Any affiliate marketer that's been around a while will know that ClickBank is one of the top digital marketplaces globally. It has literally helped vendors and affiliates to become millionaires.
This global e-commerce platform, which started in 1998, is still as popular today. Twenty-three years later, marketers are still trying to sell/promote products on ClickBank, and it shows no signs of slowing down.
But is ClickBank still living up to its hype in 2022?
Or are affiliate marketers in a rut and blindly following each other?
Let's look at the ups and downs of being a ClickBank affiliate.
- Reputable platform
This is indeed reassuring. ClickBank has been around for over two decades and is not a fly-by-night scam. Countless horror stories abound where platforms suddenly disappear, leaving unpaid affiliates scratching their heads.
ClickBank, however, has never missed a payment in over two decades. So, you're safe, and you'll receive your commissions on a regular, reliable schedule like clockwork. You'll need to decide how you want to be paid, snail mail check, directly into your bank account, or by wire transfer.
- Wide variety of products
While the majority of the products on ClickBank are digital, they span a variety of niches, including weight loss, survival, gardening, and more specific niches such as bicycle repair.
They've recently allowed physical products, including health supplements, to be offered for sale on their platform. Vendors and affiliates are making serious cash with the supplements.
The downside here is that the search feature in ClickBank would be better if improved. Searching the marketplace and navigating through the products can be time-consuming and a hassle.
- High commissions
Unlike Amazon, which only offers its associates (affiliates) a measly 4% to 5% commission on most products, vendors will pay you anywhere from 50% to even 100% a sale with ClickBank.
With those percentages, promoting ClickBank's selection is a very lucrative opportunity.
One cannot deny that Amazon is a consumer trusted sales machine designed for sales. Because of the trust factor, it's easier to convert visitors into customers on this platform.
Promoting digital products is also more complex, and the visitor will require more convincing. The ClickBank vendors don't have the good reputation that Amazon has developed.
So to combat that, you'll need to create a landing page with a solid page builder, add visitors to your email list with a reputable autoresponder, and have an email marketing campaign in place to persuade them further. There are many options for these – one which will cost you $17 a month, no matter how big your list grows, is Traffic Wave. They don’t require you to cloak your links (such as many of the big name autoresponders do) and the price doesn’t increase as your list increases. They DO require double opt-in, but in today’s marketing world, that simply saves you potential headaches and keeps your list full of people who truly want to be on it (and more likely to actually buy)!
It's slightly more work, but the rewards are much sweeter.
- Low barriers to entry
It's pretty easy to become an affiliate on ClickBank. Once you create an account, you'll be able to get your hop links (affiliate links) and start promoting the products right away.
Do remember that with lower barriers of entry comes increased competition. This is a double-edged sword.
Some of the more popular products may require vendor approval. So you'll need to contact the vendor and tell them why and how you wish to promote their products.
It's important to note that not all products are equal on ClickBank. There are many excellent products… but also just as many stinkers. This downside is expected since thousands of products are listed on this platform.
It's not uncommon to find products with bold claims, empty promises and blatant hyperbole: All designed to hook the customers in and get them to part with their money while delivering a product/s that doesn't deliver on its promises.
As an affiliate, you'll need to have a keen eye and separate the wheat from the chaff. Ideally, you'll want to purchase the product and go through it before promoting it. You'll be able to promote the product more convincingly if you know what it's all about, instead of blindly hyping it up.
Many affiliates love ClickBank because it's highly convenient. The platform tracks your sales, monitors refunds and chargebacks, and sends you your commissions on auto-pilot.
It's a hands-off process for the affiliate who can just focus on the marketing and promotions. While ClickBank's tracking is reasonably good, you'll also want to use a tool like ClickMagick for better and more insightful tracking.
You're also provided stats such as the earnings per sale, conversion rate, gravity, recurring billing and more. With these stats, you'll be able to ascertain if a product is worth promoting or not.
That said, one minor downside here is that the 'gravity' stats can be a little misleading. Very often, affiliates only wish to promote products with a high gravity. They often fail to realize that there's intense competition when promoting these top sellers.
Furthermore, you'll often find products on pages 4-7 with a lower gravity, and may be tempted to dismiss them. However, these products buried in the deeper pages were usually top sellers some time back.
Just because they have a lower gravity now doesn't mean that the product isn't good or sellable. It just means that affiliates have stopped promoting them, and so their rankings dropped.
These former 'top sellers' usually still have legs and you'll be able to get a lot of sales from them while dealing with less competition. Give them a chance and don't be too hasty to throw the baby out with the bathwater.
While there are many reasons why you should be a ClickBank affiliate, it's important to be aware of a few downsides.
- Serial refunders
All products on ClickBank need to have a money-back guarantee. While this helps to improve conversions, it also means that people who want something for nothing will purchase the product and request a refund without missing a beat.
Since the products are often digital in nature, it's easier for them because they don't (and can't) need to return the product. As an affiliate, your commissions may decrease due to chargebacks and refunds.
This is another bugbear that many beginner affiliates have with ClickBank. If you're a successful affiliate with an active account and making sales daily, it won't affect you.
However, if you're still a beginner and making an odd sale here and there, you may end up paying fees if your account is dormant.
So, even if you have a positive balance in your account but you've not made sales in 90 days, ClickBank will deem your account dormant and deduct $1 every single day. After that, it becomes $5 per pay period and goes up to $50.
You just might have commissions in there that are reduced to $0. That may make you balk… and it's understandable. But it's part of the game.
You'll want to set a lower payment threshold when you're starting out and try to become a proficient affiliate as soon as you can.
You can read the terms here: https://support.clickbank.com/hc/en-us/articles/220375627-What-happens-if-I-don-t-use-my-ClickBank-account-for-a-long-time-
- Should you become a ClickBank affiliate?
Of course, you should!
Physical products and digital products are not mutually exclusive. You can promote both of them on your niche sites, YouTube channels and so on.
You'll be quickly spoiled by all the options when choosing a digital product on ClickBank. With the high commission rates, even 3-5 sales a day may mean an extra $1k to $3k in earnings for you.
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