If you’ve ever dabbled into the exciting world of affiliate marketing, you’ve hear of Clickbank. It’s one of the easiest programs to get into (there are virtually no requirements) and you can choose among a whole host of products.
Can you make money with Clickbank, however?
The short answer is – yes! This answer, however, is dependent on several factors I’d like to examine.
Making money with Clickbank isn’t my option of preference. I gave it a try but as far as affiliate marketing goes, this was my least successful endeavor.
Let’s break down the Clickbank affiliate program, the opportunities, the challenges and the ways to make money with Clickbank.
What Is Clickbank?
First things first, if you’ve never heard of Clickbank before, is a digital product marketplace. Anyone who thinks they can create a successful (or not so much) digital product is free to join Clickbank, set up a promo page and start acquiring customers.
Well, the above description is generally known but it’s not 100 percent correct. Clickbank does allow the sale of physical products, as well, but it’s not the exact thing that the platform’s known for. Rather, it’s much more popular among those selling ebooks, guides, audio and video lessons.
You’ve probably seen ad pages for programs that consist of PDF guides. These range vastly – from ways to cure snoring and boost fertility to video editing opportunities and guides that will teach you how to make 10K per month. If you’ve ever come across one of those, chances are that the product page is Clickbank hosted.
Currently, Clickbank has over 276 product categories and over 4,400 unique products as of the beginning of April 2019. There are also some interesting statistics about the best performers if you’d like to find out more.
Thus, one of the ways to make money on Clickbank is to create your digital product and start selling it.
The second way to make money with Clickbank involves promoting products as an affiliate. You can do the promotion via your website or make money with Clickbank without a website by featuring ad links in your social media or emails.
I’ve never created a Clickbank product but I did try their affiliate marketing opportunity. For me, it was a huge miss, precisely because of the massive abundance of products and the time it takes to find something promotion-worthy.
Making Money with Clickbank: Selling a Product
To make money with Clickbank, you can adopt one of two approaches. The first one is to launch your own digital product.
Anyone who has researched the topics has seen posts from people (are they real people though?) who claim to be making 300, 400 or even more dollars per day by selling Clickbank products.
While I’m not saying this is impossible, achieving such monetization level can be difficult to achieve. The main reasons include those:
- There are dozens of competitors in each niche
- Unless you create a unique system or a program, you’ll find it very difficult to establish your presence
- You need a high quality product in order to grow your popularity and generate consistent sales – you can’t just put a PDF together over the course of a few hours and call it a day
- You need to do marketing in order to generate traffic for your offering
- There’s a fee you need to pay to list a product for sale (hence, you have to invest before you see returns)
- If you don’t find affiliates interested in promoting your product via their network, all of the advertising work will be left to you
- Clickbank has a very tight refund policy and if people aren’t happy with your product for any reason, they will get their money back
Obviously, Clickbank doesn’t come solely with disadvantages.
As a newbie, you may enjoy this opportunity to create and attempt selling a digital product.
For a start, the commissions are very high in comparison to other programs that sell digital products (say – the Kindle Direct Publishing program). Ebook creators get to keep over 70 percent of the funds generated through product sales.
There’s a worldwide distribution network – you can find customers in all parts of the world.
If you get affiliates interested in your product, the traffic to your offer page will increase and eventually, you will generate sales.
The payouts are timely, you have access to usable tools for product creation and performance monitoring and the site isn’t massively technical, making it easy for newbies to get started.
It’s up to you to decide whether you’re going to sell a digital product through Clickbank, another platform or your own website. As a beginner, however, you may benefit from the infrastructure that’s already in place.
How to Make Money with Clickbank – Product Creation Tips
To make money with Clickbank, you’ll have to do your research and you’ll have to identify the product characteristics that will enable you to monetize in the long run. A few of the conditions you’ll have to meet in order to sell a digital product successfully include:
Do Market Research
Is there a large enough, yet targeted niche for your product? If so, has somebody else already brought the idea to reality? Do Clickbank research and check out other platforms to see whether an ebook on a similar topic is already out there and selling well. When such a product is in existence already, you’ll have to fine-tune the idea to appeal to the same niche audience while offering something new.
Choose a Topic You’re an Expert In
If you’re not a licensed nutritionist, don’t create a weight loss guide. Not only will the information be collected online or based on anecdotal evidence, the lack of expert knowledge will show. Choose a topic you know enough about and have the credentials to discuss. Otherwise, you quickly risk losing popularity and having people asking for refunds.
Use a Clickbank Product as a Part of Your Overall Income Generation Strategy
Let’s take my website as an example. I write about making money online. This is my niche and I monetize in several ways – through my website, through ebooks and through freelance service provision. Were I to create a Clickbank product, it would have been a part of the overall effort to establish my reputation in the respective field.
Focus on a Quality Pitch Page
To make money with Clickbank, you need to have a high quality pitch page. It has to be honest, comprehensive and setting clear expectations right from the start.
A good pitch page answers top client questions first – what’s the product, how much does it cost, is there any recurring billing, are there add-ons, are there people who have used the product already?
Including customer reviews is a good approach but only if you have genuinely satisfied clients. Writing a fake review on your own is the easiest way to make the pitch page sound superficial and spammy.
Acquaint Yourself with the Clickbank Product Upload and Technical Guidelines
While the process of uploading a product and setting up a page, a payment link, a thank-you page, etc. has been simplified through the Clickbank platform, there are still essentials to keep in mind.
Read the technical documentation first and go through the process thoroughly before your product and page go live. Adding a new product does come with its specifics and if you don’t understand a part of the process, you can get in touch with the Clickbank support team.
Making Money with Clickbank as an Affiliate
This is the opportunity that I have experience with and let me tell you one thing – I really didn’t like it.
For a start, there’s a lot of junk. So many of the products simply seem to be spammy and lacking in quality. Identifying opportunities worth promoting will take tons of research. Even then, many Clickbank pages have that over-promotional feel that makes people completely uninterested in finding out more.
To make money with Clickbank as an affiliate, you will have to sift through tons of garbage, you may even have to buy the product to check out if it’s really worth promoting.
These are the network’s biggest disadvantages for affiliates in my opinion:
- You earn a commission for sales generated through your referral, there are no incentives for actions (sign ups, downloads, clicks, etc.)
- There’s no way to come in direct communication with a seller and enhance the quality of the campaign
- There’s a lot of Clickbank terminology you’ll need to get acquainted with when choosing offers to promote
- Because of the numerous trashy products, many people have a negative view of Clickbank products – even if you promote quality digital downloads, chances are that many of your website’s visitors will still turn away from the offer
- You need to build high quality content and increase trust and engagement before you can eventually start earning commissions
- There are only digital products for download – no other items or services to advertise
- There’s intense competition of affiliates, some adopting incredibly aggressive approaches to generate referral traffic
Does this all mean you shouldn’t join? Of course not! Some legitimate blogs out there have provided evidence of making money with Clickbank. Some prefer this affiliate program over other networks due to the wide range of possibilities it has to offer. For me, the disadvantages far outweigh the benefits, which eventually contributed to me closing down my Clickbank affiliate account.
Better Alternatives to Making Money with Clickbank
If you cannot make money with Clickbank, even though you’ve given it your best, there are other choices to explore.
Numerous other affiliate networks offer a better choice of digital and actual products you can advertise. In addition, these networks make it possible for you to earn commissions for sales, as well as for actions undertaken by your website visitors.
Right now, I really enjoy these three affiliate marketing platforms (and they’re obviously not the only ones out there):
- MaxBounty : offers access to a wide range of offers, there are additional stimuli and perks for members, new affiliate opportunities added on a daily basis.
- Flex Offers: another huge platforms that offers both cost per sale and cost per action campaigns. New affiliate opportunities are added on a daily basis.
- Commission Junction: is probably one of the best-known platforms but it’s much more selective. You have to apply to each individual campaign and if your traffic is lower, chances are that you’re not going to get approved for numerous opportunities.
It’s possible to make money with Clickbank. Launching a digital product may be your thing and you should definitely give it a try.
It’s possible to make money with Clickbank without a website. The platform has everything you need to launch a product and if you plan on being an affiliate, various types of digital channels can be utilized for the purpose.
Do I recommend Clickbank. No! I believe that much better and more reliable online monetization opportunities exist. You can easily add Clickbank to the mix of approaches you rely on to test it against other platforms.
If you have some experience with Clickbank, whether as a product creator or an affiliate, I’d love to learn more about it. Has your experience been similar to mind? Did you find success and if so – how? Don’t hesitate to share some details in the comments below.