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Affiliate marketing for beginners: traffic sources in affiliate marketing | What to choose?


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Who it is for

  • 1. webmasters
  • 2. affiliate

A personal blog, an Instagram page, a Telegram channel, various advertising networks and targeted advertising on social networks, PPC and SEO traffic, some bundles to getting free traffic - there are so many options that beginners run their eyes wide. Today we are talking about what are the sources of traffic and top traffic sources for beginners. 


What is a traffic source in affiliate marketing

Traffic sources are the platforms from which traffic is sent to the webmaster's link. Traffic in this context can be divided into paid and free, or rather shareware. 


That is, the functionality of some platforms will allow you to launch targeted advertising for a specific audience, somewhere you will receive organic traffic from users who found your blog for specific keys through a search query, or it will be spam under posts on social networks, streams or by email. 


In this article, we will analyze the best traffic sources for affiliate and give a small assessment of how difficult it will be for a beginner to start in them. Let's go!


Shareware traffic

Let's start with what interests every beginner — where to get free traffic for affiliate marketing. Let's start by defining what shareware traffic sources are.  



Examples of tools and platforms that can be classified as free traffic sources


  • SEO–optimization. What is SEO traffic: this is the promotion of the site in the search results. In such niches as gambling, it would be extremely rude to say that this is shareware traffic, since creating and optimizing a site for a casino will cost at least $2,000, but there are other niches, such as info products, where you can build a site on the constructor, parse low-frequency keys, buy a pair of links for $50 and receive passive leads from the site for many months. Therefore, this item definitely remains on this list. Also, in the context of the topic, you can look at the article about doorways. Let's move on. 
  • Social networks. Promotion of advertising through created groups, forums and the formation of a personal brand. Here you can also note massive spam through inexpensive automation programs. We will talk about targeted advertising in social networks a little later. 
  • Video platforms and video hosting. Platforms like YouTube give aspiring bloggers organic traffic, and by properly optimizing your videos, you can get a lot more free impressions than your competitors. For more information about this, see the article about doorways, link above. 
  • Messengers. Platforms such as Telegram allow you to create channels, post relevant content and accumulate subscribers around you by overflowing the audience from forums and other social networks, spam and search engine optimization. 


An example of getting organic traffic from YouTube


This list can be supplemented in any way that is suitable for attracting traffic and for which you do not need to pay money directly. For example, a few years ago, fans of shareware traffic sources for affiliates discovered the Bigo social network, where they could spam links to users and extract excellent profits from it. A similar story with the Thai messenger Line and others. 


Paid traffic sources in affiliate

Advertising networks are mainly used as paid traffic sources. They are intermediary platforms that specialize in specific advertising formats, where they provide access to a particular advertising space for money.



What are the types of paid traffic:


Targeted ads – this approach to attracting traffic allows you to get relatively quick results, due to the fact that you can clearly set the settings for the target audience to which you want to show your ad. This format is predominantly used to run ads on social networks.


An example of targeted advertising in the popular social network "VK" in the CIS


Context advertising – a format in which ads are displayed based on user requests. The main networks to work with are Google Ads and Bing Ads. Advertising can be placed both in search results and on sites connected to the contextual network that correspond to the subject of the ad.


An example of contextual advertising of affiliate programs in Google


Push-notifications – notifications that appear on the screens of mobile devices or on desktop versions of sites and contain, as a rule, unobtrusive advertising or messages about various promotions, etc. Traffic volumes for this format are high, but unlike the previous examples, it cannot be called high-quality.



Native advertising – ads consist of an image and small text, are placed in a highly visible place on the site and fit seamlessly into the content of the site both in theme and design, allowing you to bypass the effect of banner blindness.


An example of a block with native advertising on partner sites


Teaser advertising – a type of native advertising, consisting of an ad in the form of an intriguing picture (or shock content) and a short, even more intriguing inscription to it, which encourage the user to click on it.


An example of teaser advertising on the site of a partner in the CIS


Pop-up – a type of advertising in which a banner pops up over the site visited by the user. There are also such varieties as: Popunder, in which the advertisement opens behind the main site and ClickUnder, in which the advertisement will appear after clicking anywhere on the site. This format is suitable for advertising promotions, sales and ads related to the theme of the site visited by the user.



Advantages of paid traffic

  1. When launching campaigns in traffic sources, the webmaster himself controls the budget, campaign schedule, sets favorable rates, can pause the campaign, that is, he has a real tool in his hands that he uses at his own discretion.
  2. Using paid traffic, a webmaster can quickly test bundles and find those that convert well, that is, turn an ordinary site visitor into a client.
  3. With a working bundle, a webmaster can scale his advertising campaign, which can increase his earnings in a short time compared to organic traffic.


Where to get traffic source: there are a lot of options for traffic sources, in order to find a convenient one, you need to conduct tests. Tests are a key action in arbitration. It is thanks to the tests that combinations of images, fonts, approaches to promoting offers and traffic sources are found that bring a high ROI (return on investment, that is, how much the investment in advertising campaigns pays off). ROI is calculated as the difference between income and expenses, divided by expenses and multiplied by 100.


In this case, income is the amount that the webmaster received from the affiliate program or advertiser. Expense - absolutely all the money that was spent on preparing and running the campaign (designer services, translator for texts in foreign languages, paying for hosting to host your landing pages or paying for using traffic sources).


General payment models in traffic sources

Also, when analyzing the topic of how to choose a traffic source, one cannot help but touch on the issue of payment models. This is the fundamental point: 


  • CPT – price for the time of advertising placement (purchase of space for placing an ad for a specific period).
  • CPV – model with pay per view.
  • CPC – model with pay per click.
  • CPM -model with pay per thousand clicks .
  • CPA – model with payment for the completed target action and includes such models: CPL – payment per lead, CPI – payment for installation, CPS – payment per sale.
  • Auctions - these models imply the distribution of traffic among ads depending on the bids set by webmasters.


When choosing a traffic source, there are various factors to consider, such as:

  • whether the offer complies with the rules of work in the source;
  • budget;
  • experience to work at the source;
  • vertical.


Which traffic source to choose for a beginner

So, what is the best traffic source for newbies? Someone will say - shareware traffic, someone that this is FB, someone will advise you to start with push notifications. In fact, the universal advice is as follows: a beginner can succeed in each of the above sources even with a small advertising budget, if he adequately approaches the study of the approach to working with traffic in this source, and he will carefully analyze every step. 

If you take a look at our case section, you will see that from any traffic source you can get decent revenue, and everything else will come only with experience. Good luck!



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