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Payday Loan Blog - 7 Reasons Affiliate Programs Are Better Than Adsense

 Wednesday, 17 January 2007

Ever since contextual advertising reared its ugly head was made available to the general webmaster population, we've seen countless threads in various search marketing forums and blogs over the use of Adsense, YPN, and other contextual programs, questioning whether or not it even makes sense to use such programs.

Noting our obvious bias as a company that makes money nurturing affiliates, I still find it difficult overcome the following points that extol the advantages affiliate programs (especially private label affiliate programs) enjoy over contextual advertising.


1. Ad blindness
One of the biggest issues currently facing Adsense, and any marketing tool that is overused really, is that the target audience becomes effectively blind to ad copy. Consumers became blind to banner ads, and according to heat-map studies by Jacob Nielsen, consumers may now be becoming Adsense blind. I blame a lack of variance allowed in the ads as the main reason this occurs; there are layout options, but Blumey would probably point out that these differentiations are so slight that they probably account for proper usage on perhaps half of the ad-ready sites out on the web.

2. SEO ranking conspiracy theories
While I don't like to feed into conspiracy theories and would rather just own stock in Reynolds than actually wear it as a hairpiece, the conspiracies of suppressed rankings still abound, with some seemingly more plausible than others. Rather than go into them, it is easier to just search for some Adsense conspiracy theories.

3. On-theme, on-target, on-the-money
If you're running a pretty generic site without a defined demographic or a specific person you're trying to reach, then by all means throw some Adsense on there, but how many sites really fit this model? If you're writing about payday loans, and you put Adsense code on there to earn some click rev, do you know how much you're even going to get paid? Quality scores have been pretty subjective at times, so it can be tough to say; even at its best though, the amount per click is usually going to be a lot less than what you could get with a specific payday loan offering via a reputable payday loan affiliate site. The same argument could be made for just about any niche; find a good affiliate program and you'll be offering a specific need to your specific audience.

4. Psst…arbitrage
Hey Adwords/Adsense arbitragers, remember this? Yeah…good times. But wait, you say, doesn't Y! Marketing and MSN Adcenter --> Adsense still work? From what I understand, yes. However, drawing once again upon point #3, there is far more money to be made doing an arb job from Yahoo, Msn, or Google to an affiliate program when using highly specific affiliate offerings; a certain man with the skills to pay the bills has made this plainly clear. Travel up the foodchain!

5. Spam footprinting (MFA)
I was tempted to group this under point #2, but think about the obviousness between spam detection and footprinting. What do most made for Adsense (not made for affiliate, mind you) sites look like? Take a hard look at a couple dozen examples of MFA sites and ask yourself, "do I really want to create a footprint similar to these sites?" I'm not saying using Adsense will cause you to get lumped in with RSSGM-type MFA sites, but the more footprint diversification you can do, the better. If you are using similar templating features, why not choose a more unique monetization method that will at least result in less off-site duplicated content?

6. Blending, images, and click here now!
Policies governed by some affiliate programs are more lax than programs such as Adsense. Don't put images next to ads because it might make people click more? Granted, that is a CPC versus a CPA issue, but if you are a member of our affiliate network, I want all the traffic you can possibly give; sales is a numbers game - the more visitors that you give me, the more I have a chance to convert. I can't cash a 80% conversion rate on traffic, but I'll take 1000 visitors at 50% conversion over 10 visitors at 100% conversion all day long. Don't encourage people to click or use incentivized offers? Ouch. Some of the best performing affiliate programs out there let you use incentivized offers; again, affiliate managers want all the quality traffic you can send.

7. Send an e-mail
Speaking of send, don't forget that e-mail is still a very effective marketing tool when used properly. Adsense won't let you embed ads into the HTML of your newsletters, but an affiliate manager that you've gotten approval from to do e-mail marketing will probably let you. Develop an opt-in list of people that might want payday loans? Great, send them an offer.

When it comes to making money with your payday loan site, choosing a contextual advertising program will just result in leaving money on the table; pick a top payday loan affiliate program, and grow richer in 2007.


Wednesday, 17 January 2007 11:00:49 (US Mountain Standard Time, UTC-07:00)  #     
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