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Add Advertising to Your Web Site

Earn revenue through
                                              affiliate advertising on
                                              your websiteNo matter how good a website or product is, there is always a need to promote it to ensure that it reaches the widest possible audience.  There are plenty of various tools to help promote a web site, but advertising remains very important. 

Much of the advertising on the internet consists of banner adverts and links from other websites, perhaps together with some descriptive text or a review.  As a web site owner, you can use this to your advantage - you can identify businesses which will be of interest to your customers and offer to include a link or advert on your site.  If you do this by becoming a publisher of an affiliate scheme, you can have access to a wide variety of people eager to find places to publish their adverts.

In return you stand to earn possibly a small fee for each visitor who clicks through to the advertisers site, or even a share of any sales made as a result of that click through.

How to Choose Advertisers

In order to choose which advertisers are most likely to be of interest to your customers, you must not rely solely upon the content of your own website.  It can be interesting to track visitors to your website in order to find out the sort of organisations which are using your site, as well as the search terms people are using to reach your site.  You can sometimes be surprised by the results, especially when you look at how people actually move through your site. This in turn allows you to hone your website to ensure that you are using the best keywords on each page and promoting the type of advertising which visitors will actually be interested in.

Another option is to have your site independently reviewed and obtain an opinion  from an ordinary visitor's point of view.  This can be essential to ensure that your website is easy to use and not too intrusive with the right balance of advertising and interesting content.

Once you have an idea of what is most likely to appeal to your visitors and you are unable to provide this yourself, then you need to look for advertising partners to place their advertisements on your own site.

Although a few companies may run their own programmes which you can join direct, or whom may be willing to join you as a partner, you will probably find it easier to join a scheme which offers several affiliate programmes, allowing you to easily track all traffic through your web-site, collect commissions together (avoiding bank fees) and keep your links up to date easily.

A recent report has noted that on-line advertising has grown by 19% year on year to a total of £196.7m (outstripping cinema advertising for the first time) and yet it still only represents 1.4% of the total amount spent on advertising on all media - there is therefore room for a lot of growth in this area.

You need to consider joining a programme which will inform you of new schemes as they come on line, enabling you to keep your site interesting and advertising relevant, without you constantly needing to search out new partners. There are several such schemes available, all of which offer the same basic facilities, including providing rolling banners (where they will switch between chosen advertisers each time that a webpage is refreshed), static banner adverts and text links to numerous advertisers.  You can check for traffic errors, which may be caused by a problem in your HTML code, or an expired link, keep tabs on your commission earned (including trends typically over a couple of days, a week, a month and a year) and apply easily to join the numerous programmes.

Such banners can also be used in email marketing campaigns, although many of the advertisers look on this as a dubious practice, as it reflects upon the advertiser more than the person who sent the email.  As a result, the advertisers and affiliate schemes tend to keep an eye on all such emails to ensure that they are not used in spam and offer proper opt-in schemes.  However, please see the notes at the bottom of this review about how you can actively manage an email opt-in scheme which should be acceptable to your affiliate advertisers.

Although many of the advertisers pay commissions in US dollars, the schemes will generally collect these commissions together and convert them into your local currency for payment direct to your bank account (or via cheque) without incurring any conversion fees on your behalf.

Affiliate Scheme Providers

The choice of scheme does not really appear to be limited to the facilities on offer, but rather the advertisers available through that scheme.  For example, we ourselves have used several different affiliate links on our websites, but in order to offer the range and specifically targeted programmes, we have had to join several different scheme providers

It may be worth your while joining one of the affiliate newsletters which exist, such as the WeAreAffiliates free weekly newsletter which features new affiliate programs on the market and tells of affiliates & affiliate program success stories. It even allows you to check out the affiliate programs & networks at My 15 Best Performers.  This can help you to pick the affiliate programs which you want to join and promote on your website.

The only real problem with these various schemes is that several of them insist that you join their scheme as a publisher in order to find out the details of all the affiliate programmes available.  Luckily, it is free to join such schemes. 

However, some of the better Affiliate Scheme providers appear in the table below:

>

Top Affiliate Scheme Providers


Affiliate Window

Visit
                                                          Affiliate
                                                          Window - one
                                                          of the
                                                          broadest
                                                          affiliate
                                                          schemes
                                                          around

Offer a broad range of schemes as well as allowing you to easily create a store front and email templates provided for many advertisers.

Trade Doubler

Tradedoubler Affiliate Advertising scheme

One of the better UK based programme providers offering content units (advertiser's text to include on your site, such as links to latest offers).  As well as the ability to create a store front, Tradedoubler also offer contextual adverts (similar to Google Adwords), where the adverts are based on the content of your webpage.
DGM Pro (Deal Media Group)

Digital
                                                          Media Group
                                                          Affiliate
                                                          Scheme

Another good UK provider of Affiliate Programmes although their website is not very inspiring.
Affiliate Future Network

Affiliate
                                                          Future offer a
                                                          range of niche
                                                          affiliate
                                                          programs

This has a poor range of programmes which tend to be from lesser known websites, many of which are adult related.
Commission Junction

Click
                                                          here for
                                                          Commission
                                                          Junction - one
                                                          of the largest
                                                          affiliate
                                                          programs in
                                                          existence

 

 

This programme offers a wide range of affiliates, across all market areas and countries, allowing you to target affiliate marketing schemes at different countries.

(Details of More Affiliate Scheme Providers...)

These affiliate schemes have been used very effectively by some of the more innovative internet companies to set up websites which offer loyalty schemes of some form to give back some of the revenue which they earn from these affiliate programmes - we discuss these loyalty schemes here

Relevant Advertisements

You do have to be careful to ensure that advertising is well placed (and does not swamp your visitors) and relevant to your audience.  You therefore need to pick the affiliate programmes very carefully to ensure that you do not alienate your website visitors.  This is where Google Adsense comes into its own  - once you add the code provided to your website, Adsense automatically generates adverts which are relevant to the text on your webpage (it is therefore important that you consider how friendly your website is for search engines). 

Google Adsense is also very useful for earning money through search links on your website - if a visitor uses a search box, the results are provided by Google and any paid for advertising is shared with you in the same way as if it has appeared on your own website.

If a web visitor "clicks" on an advertisement, the web publisher will earn a percentage of the advertising revenue generated as a result of the click. Many webmasters have built content websites around the Google AdSense model. In many cases the specific intent of the webmaster is to profit from Google AdSense. Other webmasters use Google AdSense to supplement their revenue.  This avoids the need for you to constantly check that the affiliate programs you belong to are valid and still relevant, although it does have a downside in that because you are sharing the advertising revenue with Google, your earnings can be less than offering affiliate advertising directly.

Whatever form of advertising you use, targeted niche sites that have a clear theme, tend to generate more advertising revenue simply because it is easier for these sites to achieve decent search engine placement. You therefore need to be careful about your website design and how you promote your website

If you are going to use Google AdSense, you also need to be careful to choose a niche where there is a sufficient number of advertisements available.  Another factor to take into account is the markets which you aim at - certain advertising keywords warrant a higher rate of revenue but possibly less traffic.  For example, low cost items (such as mobile phone ringtones)  might not pay very much revenue for click throughs, but may attract more traffic than advertising for luxury car dealerships.

6 Simple Rules

So, if you run your own web-site, offering advertising in this way can provide a very useful source of additional revenue, provided that you follow simple rules:

  1. Keep the number of adverts down to a minimum on any given web-page
  2. Ensure that the size and style of any adverts fits in with your general web-site design.
  3. Ensure that any advertising is relevant to your audience - for example, it is not worth advertising Viagra on a site aimed at teenagers.
  4. Utilise both text links and banner adverts on a given page to allow links to be as unobtrusive as possible.
  5. Avoid email marketing, unless you are certain that the recipients will find an interest in the content which you are providing to them.  SPAM is one of the most dreaded side effects of using the internet and likely to get your Internet Service Provider to bar your account.
  6. Constant Contact
                                                    Try it Free - keeps
                                                    you in touch with
                                                    your site visitorsIf you insist on using email marketing, you may like to consider using the Constant Contact software available from Roving Software which provides tools to add to your web-site to enable people to opt-in to your email list and then you can use this system to create HTML newsletters (using supplied templates) and send them to your email list.  You can then access results, to find out how many customers read your email and check which links were clicked on and remove invalid email addresses (or people who opt-out). Charges are based on the number of subscribers to your email list (up to 50 subscribers is free of charge)


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