So I have been doing affiliate marketing for over 5 years now and usually work with CPA networks and occassionally with cj.com and google aff network.
In a good month I can bank 5k-10k and sometimes when I am really lucky I can bank 20k in a month. (This is all part time work as I am currently in university).
This is all good and stuff but the problem is that the income goes up and down monthly and there are months where I will only bank $1k. This can be frustrating at times when there is such a big change month to month.
Every affiliate goes through is as the trend changes very quickly.
All in all there are some problems with Affiliate marketing like advertisers pulling out, advertisers nothing paying, networks scrubbing, networks not paying, not able to bid on certain keywords, or cpc being too high.
But thats the life of being an affiliate marketer and I have to deal with it which is all good as I am used to it now and I have come up with ways to get out of it.
As an affiliate marketer I always thought it will be cool to be an advertiser and to have my own product etc.
So 2 months ago I came across a software and guide solution which I thought I could make it better and easier for the users.
I got a editor and programmer to get the guide and software going which only costed me $200 all up for 2 days of work. I built a website and landing page and added pricing options, buy now options, faq etc etc.
So I got excited and got over 1000 keywords and 5 ads set up on google. I set up google analytics and conversion tracking and made my campaign live.
Bang 2 hours later I had 4 sales and I only spent $3 and made $40. Not bad right?
Next morning I wake up and I have 10 more sales for a total adwords cost of $7. Now I am all excited etc. I thought if I optimize the site and campaign and scale it to US & Canada I will be making at least $300 per day from my own product. Which was awesome.
So I installed few scripts and automated the testing bit.
Over 3 days I was able to bring up my conversion rate from 8% to 21% by tweaking and understanding how my customers used the site while increasing the price of the product.
below is the conversion rate screenshot for today
I was all excited til I started getting support tickets coming like there is no tomorrow.
It wasn't that my product or guide was of low quality but 5 of my customers were being a pain in the butt. Out out 70- 80 sales I have made 5 of my customers kept asking me questions which I didnt mind at first because I wanted to help them.
But later it just became pain in the butt as they were asking me stupid questions such as what is wifi ? how to use wifi ? etc. (wifi etc has nothing to do with my guide and software lol).
Any how I have a 30 day money back and I have had only 2 refunds from 70-80 sales which ain't too bad and I justed refunded the above 5 customers their money because I was sick of their questions and didn't want to deal with them. Which makes it 7 refunds.
All in all being a product seller can be a pain in the butt if you are doing everything by yourself, if i was the affiliate in the case I won't have to deal with any of these things. I am thinking of employing a full time VA to take care of refunds and support while I make the sales.
So overall it is great to be an advertiser/product seller as I am able to test everything, optimize the sales process and bring in the money. It is fun and I enjoy doing it but sometimes it can be pain in the butt when you have to deal with support side of things.
The key thing though is to provide that support as otherwise your refunds can be really high or no one will trust your product.
It is fun though being able to see people use your product. It puts a smile on your face. You don't have to be fighting google, facebook or anything as you have a legit product.
Things I am planning to do next,
1) Hire a VA who can work at least 7 hours a day
2) Start offering phone support and 1800 as I found phone support was much faster and smoother from few test calls I did.
3) Activiate my affiliate program to allow few selected affiliates to make sales and I don't want garbage traffic as it will bring down my conversion rate.
4) Offer updates for my software & guide
5) Increase the price point (which I have tested and the conversion rate only went down by 2-3% which doesn't matter as the higher price makes more profit). Also increasing the price point weeds out low quality customers.
Let me know what you guys think??