Clickbank is an affiliate platform where more than 100,000 affiliates like yourself pick and promote products from a list over 10,000. CB is a specialized platform for ONLY digital products like e-books, software, etc. That is, everything here is ordered and delivered instantly, making the tracking of sales quite full-proof.
- Clickbank does not require you to have a website or existing affiliate business/profile for sign-up & there is no cumbersome review process involved (bank account verification, or faxing documents, etc.) like there are with affiliate programs. Sign up is free and instantaneous. And you can start promoting products right away.
- Commissions are really high up to 60-75% with an average of 30% across the board and minimum payout is $10, which is really low by regular affiliate platform standards and means that you can withdraw a minimum of $10 from your account if and when you need. Smaller minimum payout is very advantageous to a newbie who may need to withdraw smaller amounts of the initial earnings.
- Real-time tracking is provided, which means than when someone buys using your link, your tracking data gets updated within a max. of 2 minutes. This makes it more reliable since there is no delay and hence more secure.
Though there are these advantages to Clickbank, there are some disadvantages as well, and as you use it more and more, these will crop up and become a pain the neck. Of course there are alternatives:
1. Micro-tracking issue: You can’t track what a user does after clicking on your affiliate link if you are directing people directly to the merchant’s page. If you want to know where the traffic came from, you can’t see that data without making multiple URLs, each with not only your affiliate ID but also with a tracking id that relates to the source where you are placing the URL. And relating the sales back to the source and then optimizing thereafter becomes a really bad nightmare.
- Alternative: Set up your own website/blog & track traffic-behavior yourself (using some traffic tracking software like Google Analytics).
2. Deep link problem: Only some merchants allow deep linking on their site. Deep-linking means that you are allowed to link directly to the download page, or sales confirmation page. In most cases though, affiliates are only allowed to link to the homepage/sales-page & many merchants’ sales-page really sucks big time, which may hurt your conversion rate!
- Alternative: one that I know if yet, except I read here and there that if you are big enough and are committing enough of your marketing resources to the merchant’s product, then you could contact them to make exception requests.
3. Poor UI: User interface of click bank is terribly poor! I wonder why they haven’t fixed it yet, considering they are over 10 years old, which is a long, long time by internet standards!!!
- Alternative: If you start using Clickbank a lot, then I would recommend using a site that sits on top of Clickbank (using it’;s internal feeds) but displays everything in a far better, more intuitive and powerful way. It’s called the “CB Engine”. It’s a paid service, but ideal for frequent users if you’re serious about affiliate marketing through Clickbank. Check it out!