What Is CPA?
The phrase “CPA” sounds about as exciting and attention-grabbing as accounting terms would sound to a quilting enthusiast. It’s usually rattled off in this acronym form, and the assumption seems to be that you’ll know what it is.
Acronyms (short forms based on initials of words in titles) intimidate people, so many new internet marketers tend to ignore or gloss over this marketing method – but “CPA” simply means “Cost Per Action” or “Cost Per Acquisition”.
Cost Per Action means that your reader just has to take a specific action (E.G. input a valid email address, click on a link, request a free sample, etc.)
Cost Per Acquisition means that your reader actually has to buy the product or subscription.
Websites (or reports like this) dryly talking about CPA can hardly compete with “Make a six figure income with no work – 1 week from now!” in excitement factor. But whether you’re choosing to focus on Cost Per Action or Cost Per Acquisition, CPA marketing has one common denominator: It is a form of advertising generated by a third party in which you are paid for hosting or promoting that party’s ad or link, based strictly on actions your readers take.
Other terms you may hear: PPC (Pay Per Click) and CPC (Cost Per Click). PPC usually refers to you paying per click – for example, if you’ve bought Google Adwords.
This in turn generates any of the following actions for the advertiser who is going to pay you:
- New subscriber sign up
- Purchase of a product
- Sales lead for your advertiser’s further follow up
How much can you earn? Well, typically… not millions. New subscriber signups usually generate between $1.00 to $1.50 per lead. You definitely won’t get rich overnight. But if you combine simple Cost Per Action with some well-chosen Cost Per Acquisitions, your payout may be much higher. For example, if you’re promoting a big-ticket item that costs $695, your commission that may be anywhere from $60-$300 on lead that results in a sale. A few of these combined with a bunch of easy “just click” links or banners can make a nice little second income for you.
And once set up, it’s a painless way to add extra income generation from your already-existing sites. Put CPA to work for you while you go off to the church picnic or enjoy a well-deserved nap (after staying up all the night before, trying to solve your shopping cart problem).
And as your list grows, so too will your profits.
What Is A `CPA Network’?
A CPA network is a company that allows advertisers and web publishers (internet marketers) to find each other and connect.
In other words, it’s the “dating agency” that pairs you up with your best ad match.
And as with dating agencies, there are leftover prejudices about CPA networks being risky. The truth is, CPA networks have matured just as many of the bigger and more selective dating agencies (such as eHarmony) have done. Just as you see “real people” committed to values and caring relationships on eHarmony – compared to the sort of dating agency that uses scantily-clad girls speaking lines laced with sleazy innuendo. Most CPA networks are solid and reliable – it’s certain unscrupulous publishers (affiliates) who most often generate the “shady” label.
In fact, one of the most important functions a CPA network can perform lies in making sure both web publisher (you) and the advertiser are reputable, solid prospects.
Choose recognized and reputable CPA networks, and use intelligent marketing tactics, and your sites should never have a problem with credibility.
How Does It Work?
So far, it sounds remarkably like affiliate marketing, doesn’t it? But there are some vital differences it helps to learn straight away.
Both rely on internet marketers to promote their products. The biggest different between the two lies in CPA emphasis on its affiliates generating leads, rather than sales. It’s usually less labor-intensive – you don’t have to do the sort of ongoing promotion affiliate marketing needs.
And in case you’re wondering what I mean by “generating leads”, that means having site visitors act by filling out a form with some sort of personal contact information.
After that, your part is done – except for collecting your payment! It really is that easy.
Start simply at first, with email and zip code cost per action ads. As your skills grow, add in cost per acquisition to promote high-ticket items.
Sorting Out The Confusion
It might help, at this point, to look at a quick comparison of 3 similar forms of `affiliate’ marketing:
|wdt_ID||Affiliate Marketing||CPA Marketing||MLM Marketing|
|1||Affiliate marketing can be originated from a network – such as Clickbank – or from an individual marketer.||CPA marketing can originate from a CPA network – such as AZN Network, CPA Empire, PrimaryAds or Incentaclick – or from a large, recognized company or organization who can afford to run its own ad campaigns||Multi-Level Marketing depends on its members recruiting new members in what is basically an illegal “pyramid” marketing structure. Ethical internet marketers avoid this model.|
|2||Commission payouts are usually once or twice a month, and are based on results (sales)||Commission payouts are less restrictive and are based on actions the end user takes (especially lead
|3||Occasionally offer promotions or product bonuses||Often offers its publishers high-end
contests and promotions
|4||In 95% of all cases, any one will be
accepted as an affiliate
|CPA networks screening prospective web publishers, often with a phone call as part of the process|
|5||You provide the landing CPA network or page and all promotion.||Advertiser provides the landing page. You provide the space to
display their link or banner ad.
How Does It Work?
CPA networks can be choosy about who they accept. They want a representative who is going to take aggressive action – and they prefer reps who have substantial lists. This doesn’t sound too promising for a new marketer, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
On the other hand, CPA networks tend to reward affiliates who generate strong results. This can be in the form of prizes, bonuses, cash – and being offered exclusive, highly-converting offers. This doesn’t generally happen with affiliate marketing.
CPA is often considered slightly fly-by-night by internet marketers – but we can blame that squarely on the shoulders of the “black hat” sites. Another little-known fact: There are large, well known brands in the CPA market, and you can find yourself promoting a product with as huge a reputation as Nike.
CPA’s shady reputation was directly caused by marketers using truly dishonest and illegal “black hat” techniques. For example, have you ever seen those ads that say: “Make money from home! 1000’s of jobs – with no training and no fee to pay! Visit our link to learn more.”
The reader clicks on this link and is taken to a site promising them the sun, moon and stars – but they have to input their name and contact information to get it.
Then, when they’ve done this, they’ll see some page saying “Sorry, all our positions are filled for now but we’ll keep your info on file” – or some such excuse. Most times, there never was any job (or even any information) in the first place. That’s definitely a “black hat” tactic – especially if you’re the guy who set up these bogus landing pages without having even the hint of a job to offer in the first place.
Yes, it’s unkind, unethical – and illegal. And that’s precisely the sort of dishonest marketer the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is trying to protect people from with their new overhauled rules and guidelines.
Pros and Cons
One advantage of signing up with a reputable CPA marketing network like AZN Network or Neverblueads: They’ve already weeded out these fly-bynight advertisers for you.
There are advantages and disadvantages to this method of generating passive income – but the benefits can often outweigh the disadvantages. I’ll give you the biggest benefit up front, in the hope it will inspire you to seriously consider this much-neglected form of passive marketing income.
Think about it for a moment. You have a list of 100 people. Perhaps only 20 of those people will click on your email link or sign up box. Out of that 20, it’s the norm to get perhaps 1 or 2 sales.
In other words, a 2-4% conversion rate – the 2-4% being the people who actually buy – is considered “good” or “acceptable” in internet marketing. However, if your sign up box or email link led to a CPA ad or site, and 20 people clicked, you would get paid for each and every one of those clicks.
Sounds pretty good, doesn’t it?
Types Of CPA Products
You may be surprised at the “mainstream” products CPA networks want you to promote. These can include:
- Credit cards
- Debt Relief
- Anti-Aging Skin Care
- Dating agencies
- Game sites
- Multimedia equipment
- Gift cards
Keys To CPA Success
The biggest problem most new marketers encounter when they try to get into CPA marketing lies in not knowing the 3 most essential steps they have to take:
- Choosing the right CPA network
- Using the right keywords
- Getting past the “no traffic” hurdle
You’ve already been introduced to the strongest reason for going with a CPA network, so let’s look at keyword research. Of course, you already know that strong keyword research is essential in just about every avenue of internet marketing, and hopefully, you know how to do it.
What Type Of CPA Offers Can I Sign Up For?
If you’re brand new to CPA marketing, it’s important to know exactly what types of offers you can sign up for. There’s a wide variety, and when you read my descriptions, you may instantly realize you absolutely don’t want to get involved with one particular sort – but that a few others are right up your alley!
Knowing what type of offer you’re going to start with will help you focus your keyword research more.
Check out this chart for a quick overview of the types of CPA marketing you can explore (arranged in order of lowest paying to highest.)
|wdt_ID||Types of CPA Marketing||Definition|
|1||Zip Code lead captures||Same as above. Both offer around an average of $1 per lead.|
|2||Email lead captures||Easiest to get people to do – but it offers one of the lowest payouts – about $1.20|
|3||Lead generation||Involves capturing a little more than just an email address – usually first and last name, address, and perhaps even phone number. Payout between $8-20|
|4||Free Trial offers||These are good to find – people like getting something concrete. Often you are paid on sales, however, just like an affiliate. The average payout is anywhere from $20-40|
|5||Sales conversions||High end products with large commissions, these are basically true affiliate sales. But your payout is most rewarding, if you can generate these – as much as $60-300|
Zip Code Lead Captures – A zip code lead capture usually comes in the form of a coupon. The viewer submits their zip code to get information about obtaining the product. The lure will be a free gift card, dinner, iPod – you name it, you’ll probably see it.
Here is a typical example:
Are they dishonest?
Not in the sense that when you click on the offer, it’s a blatant scam – finding this offer through a recognized CPA Network will protect you from signing up unwittingly for anything like that. The “prizes” are real – but usually there’s a “catch” – just like when you go to redeem your “Free Entrée” coupon from your favorite restaurant, only to discover in the fine print that you really need to buy a dessert and drink, in order to qualify.
Sometimes it’s a purchase; sometimes it’s joining a membership site, as in the example above.
The bottom line here is that your viewer is a big girl or boy. It’s up the him or her to decide how far they want to proceed in order to “qualify”.
Meanwhile, you’ve been paid your $1.35 commission.
Email Lead Captures – Similar to Zip Code Lead Captures – and slightly more hard to convince people to sign up for and complete the form.
The key to upping your capture rate is to make sure the email offer is highly targeted to the readers who visit your blog or website.
Lead Generation – Again, the key to capturing these is to make sure you’ve targeted your blog or website to people who won’t mind parting with this information, in order to get what is offered.
Don’t forget you can pre-sell offers too, by writing about them on your blog.
Relate a personal incident in which you benefited from information or products such as the one offered, and let your readers know in advance any hidden incentives they’ll be eligible for, with the offer.
Free Trial Offers – These are especially good for niches like skin care, weight loss and natural products. If you have a blog loaded with truly interesting information on this niche, you will have built enough trust for your readers to seriously consider the offer. Your blog will give you a natural avenue to promote the offer – and there’s the incentive of the actual free sample to further encourage readers to click.
Sales Conversions – This type of offer is often combined with lead generation. You capture the person’s information, get paid your tiny commission – but if the person buys, you also get a true sales commission on top of it.
If your list is small, do make sure you have a few of these well-researched, well-promoted offers. It’s your best chance of making real money.
With “easy” methods like simple zip code or email address capture, the commission is so small you really don’t notice a difference unless you’ve got a huge list.
Don’t be intimidated at the thought of promoting these products and offers – it really is a lot easier than you’d imagine to get this stream of income going; and even though you might have to invest in a chunk of setup time (especially if you’re promoting high end products), once you’ve got your blog (the vehicle you’re going to promote them on) set up and running.
Now that you’re a little more aware of what you might be getting into, let’s quickly run over 3 or 4 basic steps you can take in finding strong longtailed keyword phrases for the blog(s) and/or promotion you can see you’re going to have to do. (Skip this section, if you’re already thoroughly comfortable with keyword research.) I do find, however, there’s a big difference between telling that keyword research is essential – and showing them what actually happens when you “follow the formula” and start searching.
This tool is great if you’re not quite sure what phrases to input, or if you just can’t think up more than a 2-word phrase.
Just input what you’ve got – even if it’s as simple as the word “CPA” and then click the “Hit Me” button…
Actual search phrases based on the simple keyword “CPA” are then generated. You will be able to pick phrases you consider possibilities for your crucial “long-tailed” keyword phrase from the results.
For example, in the sample list that follows, I’ll be concentrating on the keyword phrases “cpa marketing” and “cpa instead of adsense arbitrage”…
This is the next step in your keyword research.
Take your two phrases – I’ve picked “CPA marketing” and “CPA instead of Adsense arbitrage” as an example – and enter both in the search box on the Adwords External Keytool page:
Hit the “Get keyword ideas” button – and pick likely long-tailed phrases from the results.
(You are looking for ones that generate at least 1,000 searches in the Adwords External Keytool. It doesn’t really matter whether you use “Broad” or “Exact” phrases, at this point. Remember, what you are trying to do is behave like a “real searcher”.)
3. Google Search Results
Next, enter your search phrase (in quotes) into your Google search box. If the results are less than 150,000 searches, you have a strong keyword phrase. (The lower, the better!)
But wait – there are only 2 keywords in that phrase. You want at least three. That’s okay, this is how keyword searches usually go in Real Life – at this point your brain should be ticking away, with your phrase results suggesting other phrases to enter and check: for example, now you’re thinking of “CPA affiliate marketing”, “marketing with CPA”… perhaps even something from the Adwords Keytool “Related Phrases” section.
In this example, since the more widely known use of “CPA” is for accounting, not internet marketing, I’ve tried again with “Cost Per Acquisition”. This gave me the wonderful keyword: ‘Cost Per Click”, with a perfect 1,300 searches.
It meets our 3 word minimum, our Adwords minimum number – and at 117,000 meets our requirements for the Google search:
4. Check to see if your domain name is taken
Your optional final step, if you don’t already have a website to put your CPA link on – have your usual web hosting company account all opened up and ready to roll.
If the domain name is not taken – and for purposes of CPA, the extension doesn’t matter so much (though people trust .COM names the most) – register it.
You can use a “cheap” domain name registrar like GoDaddy.com for this.
Remember, however – the beauty of Cost Per Action (versus Cost Per Acquisition) is that usually you don’t create the landing pages at all – you just send people to the advertiser’s landing page.
Just find yourself a really great bunch of keywords, and start looking for products you can promote, using them as your secret weapon.
Remember, however – the beauty of Cost Per Action (versus Cost Per Acquisition) is that usually you don’t create the landing pages at all – you just send people to the advertiser’s landing page.
Paid Keyword Research
Of course, an even better way to find great long-tailed keyword phrases:
Invest in one of the powerful keyword research tools out there. There are all sorts, but my two absolute favorite paid tools are Micro Niche Finder and Market Samurai.
These programs put keyword research on steroids, returning instant search results for hundreds of targeted keywords – ones it would take you hours to find and check, one by one, if you were doing it the no-cost way I’ve just finished describing.
What’s more, they allow you to filter and sort on the spot, find CPA networks with one click on your keyword phrase of choice, and bypass all sorts of steps.
How To Open A CPA Account
You do have to “qualify” in order to join the more reputable CPA Networks. Fortunately, this is not hard – and if one network rejects you, move on to another.
The most important thing you can bring to the table is a thoroughly professional attitude. The number one mistake that gets most new marketers rejected? Sounding like a new marketer.
Look at it from the CPA network’s viewpoint, for a moment: They are paid for results through their advertisers and through your efforts. They are not going to waste time with someone who hasn’t a clue what to do. Fortunately, you can move very quickly from “obvious newbie” to “great prospect” by merely being aware of a few key points. Take care of these before applying, and your chances of acceptance are extremely high.
#1: You Need A Website
Number one on the list – you need at least one actual website. This website doesn’t have to be the be-all and end-all of websites. It just has to look professional. This lets the CPA Network know you know what you’re doing.
Remember that keyword research we did? Well, a site based on one of those strong keyword phrases will work very well for your “token” website. Even better, if you have an old website kicking around that you’ve never done anything with – put it to work. (The advantage with an “old” website? Your CPA reps will check it out and discover it’s been “in business” a while.)
Set your new site up as a WordPress blog (hosted on your own domain – never use a “free” blog actually hosted on WordPress!) Load it with a minimum of 10 posts – I like to use slightly more, because “10 posts” can be a giveaway sign of someone who has just hurriedly created a blog for income purposes. And while CPA networks know perfectly well this goes on, of course, you may notice your success rate in getting accepted may be higher if you avoid the giveaway “10 post” dummy-website standard.
Pick a generic name for your site, because you may be working with this website a lot in the future, and changing focus quite a few times while honing your campaigns. Sites with the words “how to” or “reviews” combined with your keyphrase work well.
For example: AudioReviews.com would work better than RingtoneReviews.com, because “audio” is more general than “ringtone”. You might start working with ringtones and discover there’s a fabulous headset you’d rather promote; or a highly-converting piece of recording software. You can get away with switching campaigns on something called “AudioReviews.com” – but promoting a stereo system would not bring in the right searchers and look rather strange on “RingtoneReviews.com”. (By the way, I didn’t check, but I’m 99.9% sure that both of these names are already taken.)
When you set up your blog, do not populate it with any advertising – even if you’ve picked a theme already loaded with ads. If this is the case and ads appear on your new blog automatically, log in to your dashboard. In your Theme Editor, view the files containing any pre-populated ads such as Google Adsense, and copy paste the body of the original file into a text editor like Notepad. Save it, to preserve the original .PHP file (or in case you delete the wrong one!)
WordPress Contact Form Plug-in – Use this if you don’t have one from your own autoresponder.
You may also wish to check out the new FTC guidelines and if you feel it necessary, add a Disclosure page or section.
#2: You Need A Target Market
You’ve done your research, and picked the best niche you can discover. This is another way to impress CPA reps. Remember that list of popular CPA products earlier in the report? That’s a good place to start. But do try to find a good twist to your niche – an area that tests well in your keyword research that has low competition.
#3: You Need A Phone Number Where You Can Actually Be Reached
Whenever you apply to a CPA network, 7 times out of 10 they will telephone and “interview” you in person. This shouldn’t be the ordeal of the century. It usually only takes a couple of minutes, and consists of you confirming a few things. Looking at it from their point of view, they just want to make sure that you know what you’re doing.
Do you? Well, you’re well on your way already, just from having read this far!
There are standard questions they’ll ask you. Answer cheerfully and firmly – and whatever you do, don’t over-answer. Respond exactly to their questions – then wait for the next one.
Standard Questions CPA Network Reps May Ask
|wdt_ID||CPA QUESTION||YOUR ANSWER|
|1||“Which site will you be using to promote our products?”||- Give site you used on your application form, and add that you’ll be developing niche websites, based specifically around their offers|
|2||“What PPC methods are you going to use?” “Are you familiar with PPC?”||- The CPA Rep will usually only ask you this if you’ve selected Pay Per Click as one of the types of offers you’ll be promoting. However, he may ask it anyway. Just tell them, yes, you’re familiar with PPC and you’ll simply use Google Adwords.|
|3||“What are your plans for promoting this product?”||- I’ll be starting out on my [name of your website] site, and adding targeted niche sites built around and optimized for each of your products.|
Remember, their main purpose is to confirm that you:
- Are a Real Person
- Are serious about promoting their product
- Know the basics of internet marketing
Beyond that, they’re not the slightest bit interested in how you got your start, or why you aren’t any more experienced than you are now.
# 4: You Need A Dedicated Email Address
This is not a big deal. Just set up an email account for the new website you’ve set up – your web host will provide a certain number of email accounts for your new domain – but whatever you do, avoid free email providers!
In fact, your biggest challenge in your whole CPA venture is likely to be simply setting up your new email and making it checkable in Outlook Express (or whatever other mail client you’re using.)
#5: You Need A List
Let’s face it – CPA Networks love people who have big lists. If you don’t have one yet, don’t panic. You can still start out in CPA, and earn some income. (The main thing is to just get started.) The whole key to being accepted by CPA Networks lies in how confident and businesslike you sound.
Choosing the Right CPA offer
Part of this involves finding good keywords for the offers you are interested in promoting. Another essential step is to join as many CPA networks as you can handle. If you do this, one of the things you’ll likely notice straight away is that the same offers show up on other networks.
This is a good thing – it’s where diversity benefits you. It allows you to compare the various forms of compensation offered by competing networks. Do you want more points on Network A? Choose that version of the offer. Would you rather have the cash? Choose Network B. Jumping in and “swimming” with more than one network will quickly help you get a feel for CPA marketing faster than any other tactic.
There are certain types of offers that convert so much more efficiently than others, it’s worth mentioning them: Debt relief, insurance, loans and credit. These are the easiest categories to start with, because they are simple zip code and email address submissions. However, what makes them a good place to start for the newbie: Their payout and reward rate is usually higher than any other zip or email category.
To get people to click on text link ads and enter zip codes, it’s important to have that quality content we keep talking about on your blog – content that will encourage your reader to think of inputting his zip code as a logical next step. He clicks because he trusts your content. It doesn’t feel “fly by night” or “empty”.
Put yourself in the reader’s shoes, for a moment: He’s shopping around for insurance. He’s getting frustrated because he lives in Vancouver, B.C., and all the results seem to be for U.S. insurance. So he inputs “Canadian insurance quotes” into Google search, and finds your top-ranking site, “canadian-insurancequotes.com”. This is what the page he opens up looks like:
It’s not hard to set up a blog with real content like our fictional example, above. Notice how the colors blend and balance, so that nothing is jumping out and screaming at you. The link to the gas card giveaway looks like just another interesting part of the site, and doesn’t feel like a “scam” because it’s totally relevant to the subject (cars).
The postal code capture box looks as if it’s just going to give you a really handy Canadian quote comparison. And you’ve been reassured by the “checklist”, which is there to help you.
You might click on the red underlined text link, “insurance rates” just to see if there’s some information in that link that’s a little more focused…
Now, suppose instead we had stuffed our fictional site with totally irrelevant ads, and done our best to make sure they stood out, giving no thought to the content… Women are likely to be offended by the “hot new singles” ad. Most men looking for car insurance want car insurance, even if “hot” girls aren’t a displeasing idea generally. They’re certainly not going to trust a flashing ad (our ad flashes, by the way; you just can’t see it, in print.) And if they’re looking for frugal rates on car insurance, they’re not going to bother with “Vegas Lotto”. In fact, that particular ad is probably going to just “not register”.
In short, nothing about this site, including the generic and meaningless text, invites the reader to consider it a high-quality “authority” site – or click on the links.
I can tell you to “fill your blog with relevant content” and talk about blending in till the cows come home, but actually showing you how to create a blog site and how not to is probably a better way to give you a feel for what this translates to, in the real world.
When you are first starting out, filling out applications for CPA networks, select:
- Text Links
You can always add more types of ads later on, once your website or sites are up and running, and you’ve gotten the hang of CPA marketing.
Pitfalls To Beware
One of the most crucial components lies in matching the right product with the right target market. You’ve just seen a stunning example of how not to do that in the second fictional site example, above!
Your CPA ad should never look or feel out of place on your website. It should seem like a natural part and extension of the services your site offers – something that your target audience will be highly interested in, or pleased to find out more about.
Finding CPA Networks
It’s a good idea to sign up with a number of CPA Networks. That way, if one fails you in some way, there are others to pick up the slack.
Keep the number of networks nicely diverse, but don’t go overboard at first, until you’ve got the hang of running your campaigns. You can always add more as you go along.
A good rule of thumb is to concentrate on picking the right offers for your target market, for the websites you do have.
Do check out as many as you can. You may come across an offer that’s so good, it gives you an exciting idea for building a site around it. (But do your homework – your keyword research and offer comparison – before you accept it.)
Here is a list of proven CPA Networks. There are hundreds more, and many of these are also solid companies – but this list is more than enough to get
you started, for now.
- A ZN Network
Each one has its own rules, guidelines and application process instructions, so be sure to check them out carefully before deciding whether or not each is right for you.
CPA Website Techniques
We’ve already discussed picking a domain name, and getting a basic blog set up. We’ve also spoken about the 10 token articles you’re going to populate this blog with (or slightly more than 10.)
One thing to note that will make a huge difference: If you do treat your blog posts as “token articles”, your site will fall flat, with low conversion or clickthrough rates. You really do need to be offering visitors valuable content they can really use.
That means specific information. “Car insurance is a good thing” is not a sentence likely to grab your reader’s attention. “Here’s a handy checklist of features your insurance should have” promises specific information the reader is going to be able to use, to help himself get superior insurance that really meets his needs.
It really is worth digging round a little in your research, to come up with juicy facts that no other site offers – ones suggested by the keyword phrase your reader is searching with. We’ve spoken about some popular categories, like debt relief and credit card scores. Anti-aging skin care is another highly converting category.
What I’ve found has worked well for me with these: adding a personal anecdote the reader can identify with. This doesn’t mean pages of personal history – just a one or two paragraph anecdote, talking about one specific aspect, before continuing smoothly with specific facts showing the reader how I solved this problem. (Example: Trying coconut oil products, and being really pleased with the results – but not realizing how this oil absolutely doesn’t let your skin “breathe”, and can
actually cause serious problems – not to mention the worst acne breakout I’ve had since my teenage years! I actually got a lot of comments – and a lot of click throughs on my related CPA insertions – with that particular blog post!)
The other great thing about the Skin Care/Anti-Ageing category: There are often CPA offers for samples of a free product in exchange for contact information. These offers work really well for this category! To get back to our general methods of content creation, you can write the blog posts yourself, use PLR or have them ghostwritten specifically for you.
Since you’re just starting out, free PLR may even be your only option at the moment. However, if you do use PLR, don’t drop the posts in “as is”. Not only is PLR deliberately generic and bland, but you may find your site shunned by Google, who will read it as “duplicate content.” You couldn’t do anything worse for your marketing efforts than have that happen!
PLR is meant to give you a “skeleton” structure, cutting out most of the Research phase that usually goes into writing good blog posts. Make sure you totally re-word the articles. Re-write every sentence. Mix them up. Cut out sections. Add new sections in. Beef up statements by adding specific facts that will interest your reader.
But never, never, ever leave PLR posts in their original form.
Ads And Website Colors
One trick used successfully by top marketers: Pick colors for your site that blend with your ads. Contrary to popular belief, ads that “leap out” and assault your eyeballs do not result in good click through rates.
(Avoid flashing or moving ads – testing shows that they annoy more readers than they entice!)
Everything on your page should subtly draw attention to your ads – there should be no sumptuous graphics to distract from them.
On the other hand, make sure your pages are visually interesting and not crammed with hard-to-read text. People like to scan, looking for high points, when they’re checking out an article. Lots of “white space” helps with this, as do bullet points and subheads in your articles.
Types Of Ads You Display
There are a variety of ads you’ll be offered for each product. Select the one you feel works best with your website, and is the least obtrusive.
Types of ads usually fall into these categories:
- Pay Per Click (PPC
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Text Links
With banners, text links and PPC, you have the option of starting out by just merely inserting them in relevant content on a web page. However, the more you do to encourage people to click on them, the better. This does not mean asking people to click on the ads! In fact, whatever you do, don’t allow friends and relatives to repeatedly click on your ads – it will be noticed, and you will be penalized.
The best way to encourage click through is to make clicking on your ads seem like a natural step when your interested reader explores your page. That’s where those targeted blog posts come in and highly relevant offers come in.
The Importance Of Tracking
The best way to keep your offers converting well is to pay attention to your tracking. Don’t ignore this aspect of CPA marketing – it is really easy to tweak or change ads for a site, based on your results.
At the very least, you should have Google Analytics installed on your site – paste the code right at the bottom of your HTML, immediately before the </
You can also use tracking tools, such as Prosper202 (which is free and fairly easy to use). Another popular tool is DirectTrack.
Another program I’ve heard positive comments about: Statsrobot. Actually, I just checked the sales page out for the first time, and not only is it free, it looks easy to use, focusing directly on keeping track of CPA network stats:
Which is exactly what you want!
Whatever program you use, however, make sure it tracks clicks, not just sales. Keeping track of clicks is your real key to CPA success.
Where To Get Free CPA Information
A good place to find really blunt, honest feedback is WarriorForum. You don’t have to join – just search for “CPA” in the WF search box. This is the first place I go to, when I want tips on a marketing method or feedback on a software program. I don’t waste time wading my way through blog sites filled with biased “reviews” on Google. And you’ll often find excellent Special Offers targeted for the subject you’re researching.
Wishing you much success with CPA rewards!