Tag Archive | "Merchants"

Why Offering Coupons Can Be Beneficial for E-Commerce Site Owners

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Why Offering Coupons Can Be Beneficial for E-Commerce Site Owners


If you’ve bought anything from an online retailer, you may have seen an option to use a coupon code during checkout and you may have even used one yourself. But if you’re selling things online yourself, would it be a good idea to make coupons available to your customers? There are many reasons why this strategy can be beneficial for you in the end. Here are some of them:

Drivers Budget Conscious Customers and Comparison Shoppers

One of the main reasons people shop online is because they have the ability to quickly and easily compare prices between different retailers. An ever increasing number of people are more conscious of how much money they’re spending when shopping online and they want to get the best deals. This is why searches for coupon codes are getting a lot of traction on Google. Sure, some people may simply buy something because it had a flashy ad, or will just buy whatever they want without considering the price. But unless your target audience is “lazy rich people”, including coupons as part of your marketing strategy will be a good idea.

Encourages Affiliates to Promote Your Site

There are now thousands of websites which list coupon codes for various e-commerce sites. If you do a search for [merchant name] + coupon on Google, you will see plenty of them pop up. Some are specific to a certain genre of retailer, while others are more general coupon sharing sites. But those who run these websites don’t do this simply for fun. As you’ve probably noticed, they include affiliate links to the sites that they have coupons for, so that when someone uses a coupon from their website and clicks through to the merchant, they will get a commission. There are many other affiliate sites which promote specific merchants more simply because they offer discount and coupon codes that make them more attractive to their audience. Therefore, making coupons available gives an incentive for your affiliates to promote your site more. It can create a win-win-win scenario for everyone: the customer gets a lower price, the affiliate gets a commission and you get increased traffic and sales to your business.

It Encourages Social Sharing

Coupon codes for online shopping sites are rapidly becoming an item that is shared a lot on various social media sites. In fact, people are far more likely to talk about an online shopping site if they offer discounts, special promotions and coupon codes. If you include coupons on your social media page, this draws more attention to your post and makes it more likely that it will be shared. Tomorrow we will take a more detailed look at how coupons can be a part of your social media marketing strategy. If you’re thinking of making your social media use more efficient, including them in your posts can be a definite way to turn things around for your business.

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Should Coupons Be Part of Your E-Commerce Strategy?

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Should Coupons Be Part of Your E-Commerce Strategy?


Coupons are and have been for decades a popular method for retailers to draw more business by giving discounts to customers and also using the coupons themselves as advertising vehicles. Everyone knows what a coupon is and how it looks like. But how does this translate to the online world? Now that an ever increasing number of individuals are shopping online, e-commerce site owners need to find ways to get the maximum number of buyers for their products, by offering innovative promotions and discounts to their targeted audience. This has caused online coupons to become popular as well.

In the online world, coupons work a bit differently than with physical stores, as there is no face to face transaction going on. Online coupons can come in these formats:

A Discount or Promotion Link

Here the buyer clicks on a link, which can be a text link, video, banner or full page ad. They are redirected to a landing page that reflects the promotion that they’re supposed to get, such as a buy one get one free offer, a discount off the purchase price or free shipping.

A Coupon Code to Enter at Checkout

Here, the buyer would enter a discount code in a field during the checkout process. Coupon codes can be shared with the targeted audience through various means, such as email, social media, affiliate sites, etc. There are now thousands of sites whose only purpose is to list coupons for various merchants. People share coupon codes with offers, as well as give feedback to tell visitors whether the coupon is still valid.

Daily Deals or Time Limited Special Offers

Not really a coupon, per se, but works on a similar concept. An e-commerce site makes a special promotion that is only valid during a certain time period, usually a day or a few days. The promotion is mainly shared through the company’s own marketing efforts or through affiliate sites.

Discounts and Coupons Aimed at Specific Customers

Here, the promotion is not available to the public, but rather to select customers, usually those who have already purchased something from the site in the past. Sometimes, it is a rather large group of customers who gets the promotion, such as those who bought something in the past few months, or the customers could be hand selected by the merchant. This can be combined with loyalty programs.

Can coupons really help you as an e-commerce site owner? This is the question that many online retailers are asking. In reality, coupons can have many benefits to online merchants and help them drive more sales, even if it results in lower profits for some transactions, as the customer will essentially be paying less for their items. Tomorrow we will see some ways in which integrating coupons as part of your overall marketing strategy can help you get more sales and in the long run make more money from your e-commerce business.

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Mobile Traffic Now Amounting For Over 16% of Total Web Traffic

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Mobile Traffic Now Amounting For Over 16% of Total Web Traffic


During the last few years, we have seen a steady trend of mobile traffic taking a bigger piece of the pie. Some are even speculating that mobile web traffic will one day overtake regular PC traffic. But is it really the case? There are some stats that were released by Shareaholic in October that are based on data from the network’s publishers. While it doesn’t give a completely global view of the situation, as Shareaholic is a large network, it does give a good idea of the type of traffic in the online world right now.

According to traffic going from publishers to various merchants, 16% of users are on mobile devices and 84% of users are on PCs. Another similar compilation of stats was released by Web Meters, which included information from page counter applications such as StatCounter. According to the data, 11% of all web traffic in the United States is coming from mobile users, as opposed to 89% being generated from regular PCs. This has remained rather stable from 2011 to this year, which means that mobile traffic still has a long way to go before it dethrones the PC completely.

But there’s another interesting statistic regarding web usage. Site abandonment, or bounce rates, are higher on mobile traffic than for PCs. They hover around 10% according to a few different sources on the web. There are a few reasons behind this and what you can do to prevent site abandonment:

Sites not built for mobiles. If a user sees that the website can’t display properly, they will simply leave and visit one that does. Hence the importance of building a mobile version of your site and testing it with several different mobile browsers to see if it works well. The testing should be comprehensive and done on all pages of your site, ensuring that design elements are well displayed on the smaller screen and that the text remains easily readable.

Information not quickly available. Mobile sites should be direct and to the point. Many mobile users want to find something in a hurry. They don’t have the time and patience to go through 50 different pages on a site before they finally find what they wanted. Furthermore, the smaller screen of the mobile devices makes conducting long research a tad uncomfortable. Check how your site is designed. Your users should be able to quickly find your business information, prices and products. If you let them make purchases on your mobile site, then the entire process, from product selection to checkout, should be as simple as possible.

Sites loading too slowly. While the speeds of mobile networks has gone up with the introduction of 4G and LTE networks in many places, in general, browsing the web on a mobile is a tad slower than browsing on a PC. Combined with the fact that mobile users are often in a bit of a hurry, if your site is too slow to display, they leave. Ensure that your mobile site is designed in a way that uses as little bandwidth as possible, while remaining functional and visually appealing. The faster it loads for the user, the more likely they are to do business with you as opposed to leaving.

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Holiday Selling Tips for Affiliates

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Holiday Selling Tips for Affiliates


So Black Friday and Cyber Monday are right around the corner, which means that e-commerce site owners as well as affiliates are all getting busy to give their shoppers the best possible experience and try to draw as many of them as they can to their site. But how should you do it as an affiliate? What sites should you promote and why? Here are a few pieces of advice that affiliates will find useful:

Look for Merchants that Offer Great Deals and Free Shipping

There are many reasons why people shop online: good prices, convenience and the ability to find products that they wouldn’t be able to get in stores. But in the case of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, people will be looking for more than “good” deals, they want great ones. Look for merchants who will be giving their customers special offers that have prices far below what they would normally charge during the shopping holiday.

Also, another thing to watch out for is free shipping. Research has shown that online shoppers are more likely to make a purchase at a site that offers them free shipping on their order. After all, what good is it to save $25 on a product if you need to pay $30 to have it shipped to you? This is why you need to look after sites that ship for free, either just for the holiday or all the time. Also, be careful about free shipping that comes with conditions, such as requiring that shoppers spend $50, $100 or more before being eligible to get their items delivered for free. While this may work for certain items, you should prioritize sites that give free shipping without any conditions attached. Finally, make sure to emphasize the “free shipping” part in your marketing materials.

Be Mindful of Mobile Shoppers

A recent survey published at Market Watch finds that about 4% of e-commerce transactions come from mobile devices and this is expected to nearly double in the next 4 years. This shows that there are many people who shop from their mobile devices like tablets or smartphones, but these aren’t yet the platforms that are preferred by shoppers, who will mostly be using a regular PC. Smartphones are the most popular mobile device at the moment, but tablets are rapidly catching up and are expected to become the main mobile device used for shopping in the next 5 years. Still, this doesn’t mean that you should ignore mobile shoppers.

The most simple thing you should do is ensure that your site will display properly when viewed on a smartphone or tablet PC. Even though the percentage is small, remember that there are millions of online shoppers out there and that there’s a relatively good chance that some of your sales will come from them. Test out your sites and also ensure that any affiliate links work properly when they are accessed from a mobile device.

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How Mobile Payment Solutions Work: Part 2

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How Mobile Payment Solutions Work: Part 2


You’ve now learned a lot more about how mobile payment solutions work online and what they’re good for. But before you implement them as a method of payment on your site, there are a few final considerations that you would need to keep in mind. This will let you know what you can expect if you want to use mobile billing with your online business.

Everyone Gets a Share of the Action

Getting the funds from the customer’s mobile account into your hands may seem simple in theory, but the reality is far more complex than that. There are thousands of mobile carriers around the world. In order for a payment processor to be able to collect money from them, they need to go through some rather complex networks of financial agreements and clearinghouses. Of course, this means that they will discount a fee for each transaction made. So you can’t really expect to get the full $5 if a customer makes a $5 purchase on your site. Due to the fact that billing to a mobile is far more complex than billing to a credit card, the fees charged to merchants are usually very high. For each transaction, you can expect to receive only 40 to 70% maximum of the total amount that was actually paid for by the customer. Now there is a possibility that the system will change in the future and more efficient networks will be set up to deal with collecting the payments and forwarding them to the merchants, but for now, high transaction fees are simply part of the game and it will probably stay that way for a few years at least.

Getting Paid is Slow

Don’t expect to get the money in your bank the next day, or even next week. In fact, settlement for all transactions can take anywhere from 30 to 90 days after they were made. This is because the payment processor needs to collect the funds from each mobile phone carrier before they’re able to pay you as a merchant.

On the Bright Side, Fraud and Chargebacks are Low

When a customer disputes a mobile billing transaction with their carrier, due to the low amounts involved, most simply have a policy of crediting the customer the amount they’re disputing and giving them information on how to cancel the subscription. This happens quite often when a teenager buys a few dozen songs or items for an online game and then claims not to know anything about it when his parents get the mobile bill. Therefore, unless there is evidence that a merchant attempted to mislead customers about the cost of the transactions or otherwise deliberately engaged in malicious business practices, chargebacks, although theoretically possible, are very rare.

With all the information presented here, you should have a clearer picture of what accepting mobile payment entails to you as a merchant and can now make a better decision as to whether or not you will want to accept them on your website.

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Which Changes Will be Brought to Online Marketing in 2012 – Part 1

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Which Changes Will be Brought to Online Marketing in 2012 – Part 1


A new year has arrived and now would be the time to review how you do your online marketing and maybe make some changes for the coming year. It’s important to know that online marketing is an industry where change happens often. This is exactly the reason why online entrepreneurs need to adapt to the changing climate and review their strategies. Many are wondering about how the landscape of online marketing is going to change during this year. It should be known that changes aren’t usually drastic and take a few months to take effect. Here are some things that can be expected to happen during the year:

 

  • Some E-Commerce Sites will Change their Business Models

 

2011 saw the rise of daily deal websites such as Groupon. There have also been many other sites that followed the same business model, some were targeted towards specific geographic areas, while others were centered around a specific line of product or services. The issue with these sites is that many merchants didn’t get the results that they wanted from them. Instead of getting customers that would be loyal and be willing to spend more at their business, they ended up with many freebie and discount seekers, which simply meant a net loss for them. As such, starting a daily deal website in 2012 is not really a good idea.

 

For those interested in promoting savings and deals, a return to more “classic” methods is expected to happen. Websites that would offer both printable and online coupons are expected to get more popularity. Also, websites which offer merchandise by a subscription model, such as book clubs and other sellers of items that consumers buy regularly are expected to grow, due to the fact that they can be quite profitable for the owners and also mean good savings for their subscribers.

 

  • Social Media Marketing Will Rise Up and New Methods Will Become Popular

 

It probably won’t surprise anyone involved in the online marketing and advertising industries that social media marketing will get a lot of attention in 2012. New advertisers are expected to appear on social networking websites, including smaller businesses. Many small business owners, which are looking for targeted advertising options are going to consider advertising on social networking sites such as Facebook in order to get the customers that they need to keep their business running successfully. Another thing that attracts small businesses is that social media advertising can be less expensive than paid search advertising while remaining just as profitable if done correctly.

 

Social networking sites are considering new ad placement strategies, such as including ads in the middle of users news feeds. Also, advertising inside social media apps, such as games, dating plugins and other applications is expected to get some more attention from those who use social media to advertise. With all of this considered, if you don’t currently run social media ads, now would be a nice time to start doing so.

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Are MLM Opportunities a Good Way to Earn Money?

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Are MLM Opportunities a Good Way to Earn Money?


One question that a lot of people who want to work from home ask is: are MLM opportunities a good way to earn some money on the internet, or are they just overhyped scams? There is no definite answer to this, as some people have built a good income from them, while others hate this form of marketing.

 

MLM, or multi level marketing, is involves independent distributors reselling products of another company. However, a large aspect of MLM is not simply the sale of products, but recruiting others to be part of the business opportunity. But there are a few issues with the industry that some people may not like. This doesn’t mean that the entire industry is a scam or that it is a bad business model. But there are some issues that you should be aware of before you join any such business opportunity. Here are some of the most common problems that you will face in a lot of MLM businesses.

 

  • Low quality, overpriced, or “fad” products

 

Ask yourself this: if the products are so great, how come they aren’t being sold through traditional e-commerce, or at retail stores? You don’t see Coca Cola or Apple running MLM programs now, do you? In a lot of cases, the majority of the money comes from recruiting new participants in the business opportunity. The products are simply there so that the whole thing would not be called a pyramid scheme.

 

A lot of the time, you will see products that are overpriced and can be found for much less than what you need to sell them for to make a profit. Or they are simply “fad” products, such as the latest hype in weight loss or beauty. Of course, it is possible to make money from a fad (think Acai Berry, merchants and affiliates made MILLIONS from it), but if your entire business is based on that, know that you are running a “temporary business” and not something that will be sustainable for years to come.

 

  • Reliance on recruiting friends and family into the business

 

While it is definitely possible to market MLM opportunities online, a lot of companies make people rely on people marketing their offers to friends and family members, telling you that they will be the easiest prospects.

 

But quite honestly, this is really not the case. Most of them will just not be interested in having a business and if they listen to your speeches or presentations, it is only out of politeness or because they don’t want to get into an argument with you if they say no. Now if you push this kind of marketing too far, you will soon be joining the NFL (no, not the National Football League… but rather the No Friends Left club) and will have people avoid talking to you. After all, if you invite someone for dinner, would you really like them to start handing out marketing materials to your family? Probably not.

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Tips for Running CPA Offers on Craigslist: Part 1

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Tips for Running CPA Offers on Craigslist: Part 1


Even though it may have gotten more difficult in recent times, it is still possible to use Craigslist (and other classified ads sites) to promote some CPA offers, and there are still many merchants and networks which allow this kind of promotion. While these tips work for Craigslist, they will obviously be good for any other similar classified ads site out there.

 

However, many people report having problems, such as getting their ads flagged within minutes, or having their ads not appearing. Here are some tips that will help you get the most out of classified ads sites when used with CPA campaigns.

 

  • Don’t direct link to a CPA offer

 

While this may seem pretty obvious, a lot of new marketers seem oblivious to the fact that if you put an affiliate link directly into your ad, you will get flagged down rapidly, or your ad will not appear at all. You basically have two ways that you can use to direct traffic from a classified ads site to an affiliate or CPA offer. Either you build your own landing page and register a domain for it, or you have people email you and then reply to them by email. The approach that you will use will vary depending on what you are promoting, but the second option seems to be the most popular and effective for the majority of CPA offers.

 

  • Don’t use an autoresponder

 

An autoresponder is an email feature which automatically sends a reply with a pre-formatted message to anyone who sends you an email. Autoresponders have their value and are in fact extremely useful for some types of marketing. However, for classified ads, they are not a tool that you can use. Whenever someone gets an automated response to an email that they’ve sent, it automatically shows that something “spammy” is going on. Therefore, you are highly likely to get your ad flagged as spam very quickly if you use an autoresponder. I know that replying to emails personally takes time, but this is something that needs to be done if you want to have success. The task could be outsourced very cheaply as well. If you have to use an autoresponder (not recommended and we will get into more reasons later on) at least use one which is on a delay of a few hours and does not reply to emails automatically as soon as they are received.

 

  • Be creative in your ads

 

There are certain words such as “make money online” which will get your ad flagged right away. Furthermore, avoid copy pasting ads that you saw in an e-book or in a forum post that details some money making method for Craigslist. These have a high tendency to get flagged right away, since chances are there are many other people who have used them before you. Therefore, the bottom line here is: the ad that you post needs to be creative.

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Using Craigslist for Affiliate Marketing: What Not to Do

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Using Craigslist for Affiliate Marketing: What Not to Do


There is a lot of talk in internet marketing communities about using traffic from Craigslist to publish affiliate or CPA offers. While it is possible to do so, there are certain practices to avoid. Here are some things not to do when using Craigslist.

 

  • Don’t use it for offers where it is not allowed

 

CPA networks are aware of the fact that some marketers use Craigslist. Some networks ban this type of promotion outright, some forbid it for certain offers, while certain allow it as long as you follow some rules set forth by them. If you do not want to get banned from the network and possible lose the earnings that you have made, you should comply with any rules that they have. When in doubt, contact your affiliate manager just to be sure.

 

  • Don’t simply put in your affiliate links and banners all over the place

 

Craigslist is mainly designed for local businesses and individuals to post ads and not a place to spam affiliate offers. Any blatant affiliate links and offers will be flagged down rather quickly by users of the site. Simply put, do not direct link from a Craigslist post to an affiliate offer. Your post will probably be gone within minutes anyways.

 

  • Don’t post in the wrong category just to get traffic

 

If you post an ad in a category that is irrelevant, it will get flagged down almost instantly. The bottom line is, keep your postings to categories where they are relevant if you want them to have any chance of staying up.

 

  • Don’t attempt to trick or mislead people

 

This is one of the biggest things not to do when using Craiglist. While it was quite popular with black hat marketers about 2 years ago, Craigslist, affiliate networks and merchants have all come down on this and took action to prevent it from happening.

 

Now, what exactly is “misleading” people? Some examples would be: posting a fake job offer, telling people that they got the job, but that they simply need to complete a biz opp offer to “verify their info”. Or putting up an ad for an apartment and then telling people that they need to pass a credit check, then sending them over to a credit report affiliate offer. One other trick that was popular consisted of offering people a job and then telling them to buy a video conferencing software from an affiliate offer as the “training” for the job would be done remotely. In all cases, this is misleading people, as the apartment or job that was promised to them simply does not exist.

 

If you do this, soon enough, somebody will complain to the merchant and say “Hey! You promised me a job if I signed up on your site! How come nothing happened?” and you will simply end up banned.

 

 

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Affiliate Programs and CPA Networks: How to Recognize and Stay Away from Scammers

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Affiliate Programs and CPA Networks: How to Recognize and Stay Away from Scammers


Many internet marketers make their money by dealing with affiliate programs or with CPA networks that have various kinds of offers they can push in order to make money. Most of these companies are legitimate and will pay you the earnings that you have made on time, every single time. But there are a couple of bad players in the industry. Here are some ways to spot and avoid them:

  • Do some research first

Before even signing up for a network simply doing a Google search for their name can bring you a lot of information about the company. You will often find blog posts, forum posts and articles that mention them. Read these. See what other internet marketers are saying about them and look at whether the general opinion is positive or negative.

  • Be wary around “start ups” and smaller networks

If a company has not yet established their reputation in the industry, remember that things can go in two ways with them. Either they will grow to become a productive and successful network or they will fold. If it’s the second thing that happens, things are not likely to be pretty. There have been several cases of networks going under and skipping out on tens of thousands of dollars of payments to affiliates. The large majority involved CPA networks which were operating for less than a year.

  • Be careful around networks who seem to approve everyone

While there are some notable exceptions to this, such as Commission Junction and ClickBank, which are very reputable networks, as a general rule you should be quite wary around a network that seems to approve every publisher that applies without giving them a phone call or emailing them to ask them about their marketing methods. While you may think it is convenient, this can cause problems down the road, if large amounts of fraudsters manage to sign up and merchants start dropping the network.

  • Carefully check the terms of any offers that you run and ask questions if necessary

This is especially the case for “trial” or “membership” offers. While you may be offered a good amount for every sign up, some merchants have been known to use underhanded tactics if not enough of the sign ups that you refer have converted to full members on their end. Some may falsely accuse you of sending fraudulent leads or deliberately using bad quality traffic and refuse to pay you. For this reason, it is very important that you check the terms of the offer to see if the merchant has any special requirements with regards to the type of traffic you can send and its productivity.

  • Work with multiple networks and run different offers

It is not a good idea to focus all of your marketing efforts for the month on just one offer or on offers from only one network, no matter how profitable they may seem. Spread out your traffic around several different offers in the niche on different networks. That way, if there is any problem with one of them, you will still be getting paid by the others.

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Becoming A Merchant – The Other Side Of CPA – Part 1

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Becoming A Merchant – The Other Side Of CPA – Part 1


Are you pushing CPA offers? Have you ever wondered who are the merchants behind many of the rebill/trial offers? Some of you imagine them being some large corporation, with hundreds of staff members and an owning an entire skyscraper in downtown New York. Nothing could be further from the truth. In many cases, these companies are owned by one main owner or a few people. They may also employ a handful of employees. But that’s it. How do they make money? And HOW could you become a merchant, rather than a publisher of CPA offers?

I will explain it to you in a simplified way. But a BIG word of caution here. This is not for the lazy. It demands some hard work and a lot of entrepreneurship. If all you want to do is whip together a web page with some nice graphics and call it a day, it is not for you.

What do you need? First: a product.

The product doesn’t need to be an advanced revolutionary breakthrough that will marvel people for generations to come. Nope, it can be something very simple actually.

There are 2 categories of products that you can base your business on: digital products (most commonly the “make money online” niche) and physical products (usually “health products” niche).

If you go with the digital products, what you have to offer is simple. A series of guides related to your “make money online” idea, i.e. earn with Google, earn with eBay, earn with Amazon, earn by being a freelance writer/online photographer/ etc. or a more general “start an online business” which explores various possibilities to earn money online.

The main guides don’t have to be groundbreaking and revolutionary. All of the information on how to earn money with various methods is freely available online. But you will also need to provide some content that will make the users want to keep their membership active month by month. This includes updates, new methods that are added, or services such as affiliate tracking services, PPC tools, etc.

If you go with providing a physical product, think of filling a need. People want to: lose weight, get rid of acne, whiten their teeth, etc. Now you don’t have to spend millions of dollars researching, developing and testing a product. Here’s some news for you in case you missed it: all of these health products sold through CPA offers are no better than generic stuff you would find in a natural products store or your local pharmacy. The rest is just hype. The “super results” and “great benefits” are based on anecdotal evidence at best, pseudoscience at worst.

What you need is to find a supplier which can provide you with the product related to your niche and simply apply your branding label to the packaging, and then send it out to the end customer. You start by offering a free trial, and if the user didn’t cancel, they get a monthly shipment of the product. Your profit margin will be quite high, since these products can be purchased in bulk very cheaply.

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Profiting From Incentive Offers – Freebie Sites


There is a great amount of CPA offers that you can run and promote in various ways. While most marketers either embed these offers on an existing site or use various advertising methods to draw traffic directly to the offer itself (such as PPC, media buying, etc.), there is another way that you can make profits from a certain type of CPA offers.

Let’s face it, getting people to sign up for an offer that you are running is not easy. Even if it involves only filling out a few fields or downloading something without having to give a credit card number, the majority of people will simply balk from completing the offer. But what if there was a way to reward people for doing so? This is the basic concept behind incentive offers. You give people a reward for doing the offer.

Before get started, you need to be aware of a few things. Most CPA offers found on the networks today do NOT allow incentives. While you may think that you can do whatever you want with the users on your site, the merchants hat pay the networks to run their offer think a bit differently. If you give a user a reward for completing an offer, chances are they will do so solely out of interest for the reward and not for the offer itself. This means that the lead collected will have a lot less value for the merchant. And incentive sites are often targeted by cheaters. These people will stop at nothing in order to get free stuff and will often engage in fraudulent behavior such as creating multiple accounts and signing up for offers many times over, filling out offers with fabricated information or even going as far as using stolen payment information for orders that require a credit card.

But there are still plenty of offers that you can find which allow incentives. One of the most common way to profit from them is to build what is called a freebie site. Simply put, you reward your users by giving them something for free once they have completed the right amount of offers. This can be anything ranging from gift cards that can be used at online merchants to physical items such as MP3 players and video games. For freebies that are of high value, you can require that the user refer a few friends to the site that will also need to complete a minimum amount of offers in order for them to get credit.

How do you set up such a site? First you need to develop a plan and determine which offers you will run and which freebies you will give out. When starting, it is best to select a low-value item such as gift cards of around $20 – $25. Then calculate how many offers the user will need to complete in order to cover the value of the offer and allow a profit for you. You would then design your site and include a freebie site script which will automatically detect when a user completed an offer and keep track of your members for you.

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Understanding different types of CPA offers

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Understanding different types of CPA offers


If you haven’t joined a CPA network before, you may be wondering what types of offers are available for you to promote. Here is a quick overview of most of the offer types that you will find on networks today:

Email Submits: These offers will give you credit for the user submitting only their email address. Depending on the merchant, the user may or may not have to confirm their email address by opening up a message with a confirmation link in it. However, usually they won’t have to. Most of the email submit offers are for the “free ipod” type sites, which will let the user earn a gift by completing more offers on the merchants site. The reason why merchants can pay to get just an email address is because some of the users who input their email (a tiny minority) will go on to complete some of the offers that the merchant has on their site. They also add the user’s email to their mailing list and will then send him email advertising as well.

PIN Submits/Cell phone offers: Here the user will have to submit their cell phone number, usually to get some mobile content such as free wallpapers, ringtones, a daily horoscope sent by SMS, jokes sent by SMS or applications for cell phones. By doing so, they will subscribe to the merchant’s service which will charge them each time they receive text messages or content from them.

Form Submits: You get credit for the user filling out a form, usually to sign up for a free service, such as a dating site or a social network. The rationale behind these offers for the merchant is that a certain percentage of users will either upgrade their membership to a paid one later or otherwise buy something from them.

Lead offers: Similar to above but longer and more detailed, may involve the user filling out 3 or 4 pages of forms. Often used to get quotes for debt consolidation, mortgage or insurance offers.

Download offers: You get paid when the user downloads a piece of software such as an application, browser extension or toolbar. The merchant pays for each download due to the fact that their software may serve ads to the user or there may be a paid version available which they hope a certain percentage of users will upgrade to.

Credit card submit/trial offers: Here, the user gets a trial of a service, such as an internet fax service, “make money online” membership site, etc. or a product like a weight loss pill, teeth whitening product, vitamin supplement, etc. The user normally gets charged a small fee such as $2 or $3 for the trial. However, when the trial period is over and the user didn’t cancel, the merchant will then bill them the regular price, which can range from $20 to $100 a month. These offers typically pay more than other types, but are harder to promote as the user needs to input payment information.

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Advertising Options Overview – Classifieds Sites

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Advertising Options Overview – Classifieds Sites


When you are promoting an affiliate or CPA offer, you obviously need to advertise in order to get traffic to your site. After all, people will not magically type your affiliate link in their browser if they don’t know it exists. There are various ways to post ads online, let’s take a look at one of them:

Classified Ads Sites:

Some examples of these sites are Craigslist, Backpage, Gumtree and Kijiji. Of course there are many others but they all have one thing in common: the ability to place classified ads for free. Using these sites to get traffic to your CPA offers has brought great results to many people, but it needs to be done properly in order to be effective. Furthermore, you would need to check with your network manager to see if promoting a certain offer on a classifieds site is allowed. Some networks may ban this type of promotion altogether or restrict it only to certain offers.

There are also a few points to remember if you don’t want to get in trouble.

Don’t post ads that are misleading or deceptive. Some examples of this is posting business opportunity offers in the “Jobs” section and making it appear like you are offering an actual job, then requiring the applicant to fill out a lead form to prove that they are “qualified”, or requiring someone to sign up for a video conferencing trial for an “interview” that will never take place.

Due to complaints to merchants and in some cases investigations by the FTC, networks are cracking down on such “blackhat” advertising.

What you should rather do is post in the appropriate category and explain what the offer is about and what benefits it could bring to the customer. Since many affiliate sites are immediately flagged as “spam”, you will probably be better off getting your own domain name and landing page for your offer.

While this flagging of ads which are not spam and posted in the correct category could get annoying, remember that these sites are mainly there for local businesses to get clients and not to push affiliate offers. If there was no system in place to deal with overposting or postings in the wrong section, these places would soon be over run with hundreds of spam messages drowning out any legitimate content.

On certain offers, such as car loan or mortgage leads, another tactic that works would be having people contact you by email. You would then send them a reply with details of the offer and your affiliate link.

While posting is usually free, some sites allow your ad to be placed on top for a certain period of time or highlighted for a small fee. This will bring some additional attention to your ad and will ultimately result in more clicks for you.

In any case, remember that some networks may forbid advertising on these sites mainly due to past abuses. Therefore, be sure to get the OK from your affiliate manager before beginning.

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