Clickbank is world reknown for it’s affiliate products. There are scores of articles and blogs listing clickbank in the TOP 5 affiliate marketing leaders it’s no wonder the conversation is generally all about affiliates. This past month I set out to take a peek behind the curtain at becoming a vendor on clickbank and the schooling I received isn’t one I’ll soon forget.
This answer is simple. EXPOSURE.
Imagine you have created an information product. Perhaps an ebook or maybe even a course. How would you expect to sell it? You, poor little unknown you… would you expect to create an amazing website and magically tap and engage an audience? Well, that’s a good plan if you have some cash… actually a lot of cash. Clickbank is a better plan. Clickbank allows you to leverage your time by tapping into the affiliate market. Your one product will be seen by thousands of affiliate marketers looking for the next best thing to write about, to try out, to review.
Truth be told, you will need to spend a little cash in advertising to get your gravity rating started, but then after that… after you start to come up in the “top searches” it will be easier and easier to be noticed.
Preparing to become a vendor
In preparation for becoming a clickbank vendor I enrolled in the CLICKBANK UNIVERSITY and watched the 8 (ish) vendor lessons. I found some value in the Clickbank University but not enough to keep the monthly $49.00 + tax subscription going after I had completed the lessons. Mostly I found out how to find the most popular clickbank products and I also found that they suggest that other vendors don’t spend too much time recreating the wheel, when they can use existing popular products as guidelines for popular niches.
Having said that, it was very hard for me to imagine that the “Popular Battery Reconditioning Course” but it number one in the overall best selling with highest gravity rating on clickbank. ( I know, I’m shaking my head as I write this… really? battery reconditioning?)
With that little bit of research under my built it was time to create my product. Fortunately, I had been working on a product for the last few months and was looking for a marketplace opportunity.
I had been working on a course designed to show that anyone can make money online with a coupon website… and 17 tutorial video’s later, I was ready to connect my course with clickbank.
Connecting Your Product to Clickbank
Wishlist Membership – This was my first attempt. I LOVED THIS option because it was a One Time Fee (no recurring costs) and it was a wordpress plugin. It was pricey, but also not limited to a single site, so for $297.00 it looked like I would be able to turn ANY of my wordpress sites into a Clickbank Powerhouse. But, alas, it wasn’t meant to be. In the end, I got a refund. They said that there was something wrong with my self hosted site, but it could have been any one of the over 10 plugins that I was using to get my site up and running and looking the way I wanted it.
Clickbank Builder – This product is $600.00. I received a link through the Clickbank University that offered the builder in 2 payments and it included a lifetime license, so I figured for basically a “one time” payment of $600.00 I’d be golden. I couldn’t have been wronger. On the one hand, the clickbank builder was a simple WYSIWYG interface. You click an area and you type, but on the other hand it was very limiting, there was no way to add graphics to the text areas. The pages were limited to changes in font sizes and color… that just wasn’t going to work for me, so I took out my handy dandy Microsoft Essentials and I created HTML code to show hosted graphics. Which (as it turned out) broke the other code in the builder and I struggled with continued issues of text that became irrevocably uneditable. So, if I needed to make changes… I had to do the page all over.
MemberMouse – This was my final and successful attempt. This worked and it worked QUICKLY. After spending almost a month on Wishlist & Clickbank Builder, it was nice to just find a plugin that worked immediately. The ONLY thing I’m not crazy about is; a) it’s a monthly fee and b) only 1 URL per license. That means, unless all of my Clickbank products are on the same website, I’ll have to purchase another $20.00 monthly license.
WHY all the trouble connecting?
From the vendor side of things, clickbank is considered a “payment” method, like stripe or paypal. Your “buy now” buttons need to run through clickbank and clickbank will send your customer to the product on your website.
If you have a very simple product, perhaps an ebook or mp3 download, you can sell it directly from clickbank by uploading it and clickbank will deliver it, but for more complicated products like videos or subscriptions or courses, you need to have the three pieces… the product…. the connection… clickbank.
The “connection” as I’m calling it is generally referred to as a membership plugin. I’m a wordpress girl, so my first inclination is to build my product in wordpress and then figure out how to farm it out. The clickbank builder was supposed to be a ONE STOP SHOPPING experience without the need for the three different pieces and in a way it was. But, because I’m persnickety and I like things the way I like them, I found the sales page of the clickbank builder too limiting. and the Product page, too rudimentary… but for someone who has a very simple product… or a series of simple products… it’s a great solution.
Here… You decide
www.amazingcouponcash.com -> this is my WordPress landing page with the BUYNOW buttons going through Clickbank and the membership handled by membermouse
www.thepowerfulsecret.com -> this is what I build in clickbank builder (Hey, I bought it, I figured I should at least use it) The only problem is that the Clickbank review process keeps asking me to change little things, and because I changed the HTML and added those little graphics… the text is locked and it’s a bear trying to change the text. 🙂
At the time of this writing, both of these products are in REVIEW.
Getting Published on Clickbank
Well, it turns out that clickbank has pretty stringent standards and is (possibly) more persnickety then me. They didn’t like that I alluded to financial gain, they didn’t want me to say, “limited time offer” if it wasn’t genuinely, they didn’t approve of “fake” scarcity tactics. They wanted proof that the printscreens of my google adsense were actually MY google adsense accounts and they didn’t want me to basically promise ANYTHING to ANYONE other than exactly what I was going to present. They didn’t want the audience or potential customer to feel in the least bit mislead by ANYTHING.
WHICH is all good news for you as a vendor because then you know that they are really truly vetting their vendors and making sure, to the best of their ability that the products are genuine and not scammy. The more people that trust clickbank for valuable products, the more people that will shop there… that can ONLY work in your favor.
I don’t know why it took me so long to consider becoming a clickbank vendor. Seriously, I’ve been self hosting marginally successful membership sites for years and even though I KNOW that the trick to successful affiliate marketing is multiple streams of income and leverage my time, it still took a long time to realize that in addition to making money as an affiliate marketer… I can also make money as a vendor.
Check out Clickbank here and find out how you can be a vendor too.