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...Plus, they may have opportunities for affiliate sales, which can be far more profitable than AdSense in some categories...
The above was extracted from a post made in the Adsense Forum about why some of us have multiple sites?
It's much easier said than done! There are several major issues with what he said.
1. Affiliate minimum payout levels are typically too high for most sites except somewhat rare high traffic websites. Often it's $50 to $100 or even more before a check is issued, which likely will take many mos or even yrs to achieve. Say you have 10 direct affiliate accounts at 10 places. That means you may need $1000 in commisisons to get paid by all. However, with Adsense you can still do 10 different offers but all in 1 account with 1/10th the payout level.
2. Affiliate banners often stop working requiring hard work updating pages. Worse yet they are no longer offering the program at all, either direct or thru a place like Commission Junction (who often suddenly drops advertisors).
3. Some affiliates seem to not give credit for orders. Prime examples are the 3 major Poster affiliates and others I had personal negative experience with (which I won't mention specifically here as it may not be allowed according to the TOS).
4. Since it is said a buyer visits about 7 times on average before deciding to buy, after so many times he often ends up going direct to the company and not using the affiliate banner and affiliate code. He may also order direct by email or phone, which in effect bypasses the affiliate source. (I have been there and done that myself many times over the yrs).
I know this is the affiliate forum but I am sorry to say we had lots of very negative experiences with various affiliate programs over many years, most of which involved the above 4 issues.
Even for bigger sites Adsense works really good. Affiliate programs on the other hand require more time. The minimum payout may be an issue but AdSense also has a $100 (If I remember correctly?) payout level.
You can promote them with small sites but unless it are niche sites with a good amount of targeted traffic it may not be worth it. It's a lot faster to promote then with AdWords (or other PPC programs), although it's possible to lose money this way. The competition is high..
(About 90% of my income still comes from AdSense and other similar programs but I'm working on it)
If you're just running banners, you may be right, but to work with content related aff programs that are integrated into the site, there's no comparison.
Most Adsense sites will not generate as much ROI as a purpose built aff site, but I agree that if you're just monetising existing traffic then Adsense may convert better.
$50 to $100 or even more before a check is issued, which likely will take many mos or even yrs to achieve. Say you have 10 direct affiliate accounts at 10 places. That means you may need $1000 in commisisons to get paid by all.
That's where a network like CJ comes in handy, no? But you have to think, if it's going to take you months or years to make $50 or $100 from an affiliate program, is it even worth your time to register and put the ads up?
banners often stop working requiring hard work updating pages. Worse yet they are no longer offering the program at all, either direct or thru a place like Commission Junction (who often suddenly drops advertisors).
It happens, and it sucks. I agree. I've had CJ drop a pretty good advertiser on me. Months later I still haven't cleaned up all the offending ads. I've got one advertiser who updates existing banners periodically, so new ones show without any code changes. I love that. Please, do more of that, whoever may be listening.
Some affiliates seem to not give credit for orders.
Again, true. 100% true. I've had the experience of sending hundreds of clicks without getting a single commission. It sucks. You have to try and then move on. The little green bar indicators in CJ are not always (or even often) reliable.
Since it is said a buyer visits about 7 times on average before deciding to buy, after so many times he often ends up going direct to the company and not using the affiliate banner and affiliate code.
Truer for some products, less true for others. If they go back to the seller directly, your cookie should still be live. If they go back via someone else's link, they've taken your commission. I'm sure it happens.
That said, I earn much more from affiliate programs than AdSense. It's not a fair comparison, though, because I have more experience with the former.
If you have people just browsing and not looking to buy then put up contextual ads & if it is a blend experiment with both and find the optimal balance.
Its upto the webmaster and how much time does here what to put into making more money, if for etc you have a high traffic niche site you can start off with google adsense to pay for the hosting and bandwidth cost then its best to look into affiliate programs in your niche.
All you need to do is look at the ads loading in your site google adsense and see if they have a affiliate progrom then add a small text link to your site and see if you get leads!
It is all about numbers.
If I send 5 million users per month to a site that promotes a "good" merchant I will make about 5 times as much as I would make from sending those same users to a site that sells junk and promotes Adsense.
Merchants can be a nightmare. They want you, they don't want you, they only want you at a price. They want an unfair share, they want to control you. They want to buy you, they want you to come to their offices to explain to their people how you achieve "magic".
Merchants generally pay more, but, they can be trouble!
My only advise is this.....learn to deal with them. I make you money, if you don't like what I do, ditch me!
I'm not in the business of educating you, I'm in the business of sharing your profits as your salesperson.
If I don't improve your bottom line you shouldn't be doing business with me. If I do, then live with it!
I'm in the business of helping you make more money, which is why we can build a long term relationship from which we both profit.
Which probably explains why my merchants aren't a nightmare. Attitudes are kinda contagious :)