There are several factors to consider when evaluating an affiliate program to promote. First off, it’s got to fit into your site or blog’s niche topic, otherwise, you’ll never be able to pre-sell it well enough. For example, if I have a blog about fishing, my blog is not going to be able to convert CPA ads promoting search engine marketing. This is just common sense, right?
There are a million other things to consider as well that I won’t get into today. Instead, I wanted to talk about one thing that has been on my mind lately that has affected my online businesses greatly. Particularly, this thing that I’ve learned can help you avoid making the same mistake.
The big mistake I’ve made when promoting affiliate programs is that I pick products that are oversaturated in the marketplace. It’s a pretty easy mistake to make. When you find good products, with good affiliate programs, it’s very easy to jump right in promoting the product.
But it is a real problem. Sometimes the product and the program you find are too good. And when that happens, you have a market saturation, leaving your ability to convert to sale much smaller than normal. There’s simply too many other people out there promoting the same product, that’s all.
A perfect example of this is Aaron Wall’s SEOBook.com (not an affiliate link). Great product. Great guy. Great program.
But you know what? It hasn’t converted well for me. I think it’s too saturated in the market. (Or, maybe I just didn’t sell it right, could be.) I’m going to guess that it converted at amazingly high levels back when it first launched, but has faded as time has gone on. That’s a guess, one that is usually correct based upon my experience.
What I would suggest for Aaron at this point is to develop a new book, or new product that he can offer to affiliates to start the cycle over again, which could bring new life into the program, and in turn give his affiliates a better opportunity to convert and earn. I hope you do Aaron, let me know if so!
How do you know if an affiliate program is oversaturated?
Well, testing is the biggest way to find out. Set a time limit for your test, say 1-month, and measure the conversion rate against your other ones. If it isn’t converting high enough, make the decision to dump it right away and try something else. Stick to that decision.
My mistake is that I used to stick with a program for too long, in hopes that it would suddenly start selling. That’s a recipe for failure in the affiliate business.