Advice for New Affiliates

If you're just starting out as an affiliate, it can be hard to know what you need to do to be successful. Just as importantly, there are a number of things you shouldn't do as well! This guide will talk about both, so you can avoid many of the mistakes that make life harder for many beginners.

Do:

  • Promote high-quality products that you personally find interesting and would consider purchasing.
    Believing in the value of a product will make you better at promoting it, both because your promotional efforts will be more believable, and because you'll have a better understanding of what draws potential customers to that product in the first place. Try promoting products you feel passionate about, instead of only promoting products that are popular with everyone else.
  • Take advantage of the tools and tips that vendors offer on the Affiliates pages of their sites.
    They often include useful information about the best ways to promote their products, and may also provide images, suggestions for related keywords, and more.
  • Test your HopLinks and campaigns regularly to ensure they're working properly.
  • Spend time researching various promotional techniques before you get started.
    A good resource if you're just starting out is our Succeeding as an Affiliate article, and searching the Internet for specifics on each promotional technique should get you a great deal of good information for free.
  • Be flexible about your techniques, and be willing to make changes if something isn't working.
    Different techniques work for different types of products, so what worked for you in the past may not work in the future. The business of affiliate marketing changes very quickly, so you always need to be ready to adjust to market trends, new products, and other unforeseen circumstances.
  • Store copies of your HopLinks in a file on your computer.
    It's also a good idea to include a note about which product the HopLink corresponds to, and any additional details you want to remember about the product. ClickBank doesn't store copies of HopLinks you've created, so if you want to have easy access to them for future promotions, you'll need to store them yourself.
  • Choose an inoffensive account nickname.
    While your nickname doesn't have to be perfect (see the Don't below), it will be visible to customers, so it's a good idea to make it something that won't offend anyone or make them decide not to purchase through you.
  • Follow the terms and conditions of any sites you're using.
    If you promote a product on Facebook, Pinterest, Craigslist, or any other site, you must follow their terms and conditions as well as ours. We terminate accounts who violate the terms and conditions of other sites to protect our business with those sites.

Don't:

  • Don't spam.
    There are a number of reasons not to spam other people with affiliate promotions. ClickBank takes complaints of spamming very seriously, and we will suspend or terminate accounts if we determine that they are associated with spamming. Additionally, many websites, social networks, forums, blogs, and Internet Service Providers take reporting of spamming seriously, so you can quickly find yourself banned from popular places to promote products if your promotions are considered to be spam and are reported by others.
  • Don't fill out the My Site/My Products/My Images sections of the Settings tab.
    These account sections are only intended for ClickBank vendors, not for affiliates. Please leave these blank unless you want to become a ClickBank vendor.
  • Don't use "negative" advertising campaigns.
    While some affiliates think it's a good idea to create ads like "Is Product X a scam?" and then link to the product, we strongly recommend that you not use this method of advertising. Many vendors are opposed to people associating their product with being a scam, and can request that ClickBank ban particular affiliates from promoting their product if they catch them doing this. This means that your advertising efforts go to waste and you won't be able to promote that vendor's product in the future. In addition, it makes ClickBank products in general look bad, and can make customers hesitant to buy the product since you've introduced doubt in their mind. It's better to highlight the benefits of a product right off the bat, instead of introducing fear about a product and then trying to sell a customer on the product anyway.
  • Don't feel that you must purchase the product you want to promote.
    You're never required to purchase a product to be able to promote it, though sometimes owning and using the product can lead to new ideas on how to promote the product.
  • Don't offer bonuses of cash or cash equivalents (such as gift cards) for customers who purchase a product through your HopLink.
    This is not allowed in ClickBank's Client Contract. You can, however, offer other types of bonuses, such as additional ebooks or related products, to customers who purchase through your HopLink.
  • Don't expect to quickly generate a lot of traffic using free promotional techniques.
    While free promotional methods such as search engine optimization (SEO) and social media can eventually lead to lots of traffic, beginner affiliates will likely not drive much traffic from these methods until they've had time to build up their efforts, reputation, and search engine rankings.
  • Don't mask or store your HopLink in a frame.
    For your HopLinks to be properly tracked, they must not be stored in a frame. If your domain is masked, your HopLink will be stored in this manner, and therefore will be unreliable.
  • Don't promote the "resolved" form of a HopLink.
    An example of this would be www.examplesite.com/?hop=yournickname. Instead, you must use the HopLink format ending in hop.clickbank.net so the Hop can be tracked correctly, ensuring you receive affiliate credit on the sale.
  • Don't use your password as a Tracking ID.
    If you choose to include a Tracking ID on your HopLink, it is visible to anyone who clicks your HopLink, as is your account nickname. Having both of these pieces of information visible to others may invite unauthorized access to your account.
  • Don't be overly concerned with picking a "perfect" ClickBank nickname.
    Your advertising efforts are what really count, not the nickname you use.
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20 Comments

  • 1
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    Judy Timmerman

    All of the information is very pertinent. It helps a lot Thank you for all the info.

  • 0
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    Carolain Marais

    what's a hoplink

  • 0
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    Owen Allen

    Carolain,

    HopLinks are special links that you use to direct potential customers to a vendor's pitch page. Using a HopLink makes sure that you get credit for driving the sale.

    Take a look at the Using HopLinks article for more information.

  • 0
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    Johan Du Plessis

    Thank you for a well explained and simple to understand article. I found this very helpful.

  • 0
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    Alejandro Cervantes Huguez

    Great info Thanks! - is it to buy one copy of a product as a test run to make sure its all working fine before you start a paid traffic campaign? Basically, buy a copy through my own affiliate link ... 

  • 0
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    Owen Allen

    Alejandro,

    You can make sure that your HopLink is working by following it - the bottom of the order form should say that you're the affiliate, if the link is working correctly. Take a look at the Using HopLinks article for more information.

  • 0
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    Gary Burchsted

    When clicking on the promote button in the market place, to obtain the HopLink. there is a spot for an optional tracking ID. I'm not sure what kind of tracking ID is used in that spot. Would that be an additional tracking link from say Clickmagick? or someone similar.

    Edited by Gary Burchsted
  • 0
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    Abu Ansari

    Hi!
    On most of the vendors affiliate page they provide hoplink and tell us to replace the xxxx with our clickbank user id, we can also create the hoplink with the help promote button at marketlace... So now my question is why vendors provide us hoplink? And can i use hoplink which i created with the help of promote button not the vendors hoplinks in the banner images etc. Sorry for my bad english
    Please reply
    Thanks in advance

  • 0
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    Owen Allen

    Gary,

    Tracking IDs can be any text that you want to use to track the source of a hop. For example, you can use different tracking IDs for different ad purchases, to track which ones are performing better. The Using HopLinks article goes into detail about using Tracking IDs.

  • 0
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    Owen Allen

    Abu,

    Vendors often provide information such as sample HopLinks to make things easier for potential affiliates. HopLinks that you create through the promote button will work just fine, no matter what the vendor puts on their affiliate tools page. You can take a look at the Using HopLinks article for more information.

  • 0
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    Richard Wiltshire

    Abu,

    Some vendors provide HopLinks that have additional parameters that configure how the product information will be displayed...with or without popups or videos vs static material etc. You can choose a link that is best for your situation. Just make sure your affiliate information appears at the bottom of the buy page.

  • 0
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    Martyn Rice

    Does Clickbank approve, of Clickbank affiliates paying other YouTubers and Instagramers, to place appropriate hoplinks (products and services which that YouTubers and Instagramers fans will be interested in), in the description of hand selected videos and images?

  • 1
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    Owen Allen

    Martyn,

    ClickBank doesn't need to give you approval for where you do your advertising - that side of the business is strictly up to you. I'd say that, as long as you're following YouTube and Instagram's terms and conditions, you can go for it.

  • 0
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    Martyn Rice

    Thanks Owen, much appreciated information. 

  • 0
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    Ogunboye Omotayo

    Does Clickbank have a chart or sort for how hoplinks are faring?

  • 0
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    Owen Allen

    Ogunboye,

    You can take a look at the sales that have taken place using Transactions Reporting. If you're using Tracking IDs to differentiate different traffic sources, as described in the Using HopLinks article, then you can see how many sales are coming from each source.

  • 0
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    Karen Butler

    So we are not supposed to use tinyurl.com???

     

  • 0
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    Owen Allen

    Karen,

    You can use tinyurl or other URL shorteners, but we can't guarantee that the affiliate credit will still work correctly. If you want to use one, check them regularly to make sure that you're still receiving credit. You can also use encrypted HopLinks if you're concerned about security. Take a look at the Using HopLinks article for more information.

  • 0
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    ELVIA WILLIS

    I created a hoplink for a product.  I would like to choose to hide the hoplink on page I am promoting on.  Will I be able to change / add changes and to media page.

     

  • 0
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    Owen Allen

    Elvia,

    Take a look at the Using HopLinks article for information about what you can do with HopLinks.

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