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  1. #1
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    Thumbs up I agree with Shawn
    He posted today:
    "I'd be happy to eat my words on this, but I've never seen data in any affiliate programs I've managed that would suggest the affiliates earning real money are those who focus on running banners.

    On the contrary, those who promote affiliates on a site and make money have always had a penchant for text links, and banners were generally the link of choice for newbies."

    Comments?

  2. #2
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    I agree.

    I've been an affiliate of many programs since 2001 and I've never made any money off of banners - It all comes from text links etc.

    All I use banners for on a page is to add some color to the page.

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  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador MoneyBusiness's Avatar
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    Just my 2-cents - I've only had a small handful of sales through banners. I'll still use banners to fill in white space if needed, but I don't count on it to do anything anymore. It's never worked for me - no where near close to what text links have done.
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  4. #4
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    I agree 110%...

    but would prefer to say I agree with Mackin [an industry stud in my view], rather than saying I agree with Shawn [an industry clown (I mean funny "makeup" he wears as he pretends to be something and comes off as totally goofy to me)]...

    :-)

    and I think this is referring to the affiliate survey someone did where affs indicated banners were nearly as popular as text links... the data and categories skewed those results... for example, think they called datafeed links a separate category, when most feeds end up generating text links - but they got counted as having nothing to do with text links. Another factor, newbies fill out surveys and power affs largely prefer to quietly kill it, so survey needs to slice their results based on performance to be meaningful... show 5 tiers on performance, then show the banners versus text for each... would be more revealing to both merchants and affs.

  5. #5
    Affiliate Marketing Consultant Andy Rodriguez's Avatar
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    I'd venture to say "product links" work better than both....ie, an "image" with the "text link"...

    When was the last time you bought a banner or a text link? Dunno about you, but I buy products all the time ....
    Andy Rodriguez Consulting, Affiliate Program Management and Consulting Services, Since 2001
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  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador Sam Bay's Avatar
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    Sometimes, I use the link from a banner as a text link, when I am not able to find text link that goes where I want but the banner link does. So, the stats mat get skewed in favor of banners.

  7. #7
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    A lot also depends on whether you include PPC ads into the "text links" category not. If you do, they may often beat your regular "product links" (as in datafeed-based sites and content sites linking to hand-picked products). If, however, you place them into the "product links" category, they would raise the importance/conversion of this category drastically, as they themselves are often the "product links" and boy, do they do convert?!

    G.

  8. #8
    Internet Cowboy
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    Text links make my living. Banners fill in an empty space here and there and give the pages some color.
    Product links with an image of the product are good too, but I only use them about 25% of the time in my model.


  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador erninator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy Rodriguez
    I'd venture to say "product links" work better than both....ie, an "image" with the "text link"...

    When was the last time you bought a banner or a text link? Dunno about you, but I buy products all the time ....

    I also use the banner link and remove the image, especially if its animated. I've had some luck with adding text to a banner, but only if the banner link lands on a product page. Sometimes when I can't find a product (image), I'll use a banner instead, then add text link and some pre-sell description.

    People that browse first see the pictures and skim over the text, whether it's on a website or in print media (sorta like reading Playboy). Buyers, who know what they want, will find pictures of products first, read the caption, then the detailed description before making an informed purchase.
    ~Ernie

  10. #10
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    I applied for two programs which I share a deep vertical with. They denied, citing they wanted sites with "mass appeal and a broad demographic". As opposed to people who actually want to buy your products?

    Those programs also have an established brick and mortar presence in high traffic areas in midsize to large cities all over the country. Banners help them a great deal. If they have mass appeal/broad demographic sites pushing their banners, then they get more feet through the door, or they get people buying stuff for in-store pickup.

    And my site is for a very narrow niche, one of several covered by the stores.

  11. #11
    notary sojac Herb ԿԬ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by weisinator
    I applied for two programs which I share a deep vertical with. They denied, citing they wanted sites with "mass appeal and a broad demographic". As opposed to people who actually want to buy your products?
    maybe they just wanted "branding," sounds like an advertising mindset.

  12. #12
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    I agree with Shawn - they're a waste

    UNLESS it's used as part of targeting

    For example...

    If I have a product page about a satin bra from figleaves... AND the merchant also has a matching banner, then I use it to fill white space, but it is actually being used as a PRODUCT link, not a BANNER link

  13. #13
    The "other" left wing davidh's Avatar
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    To what Bily Ky says, I would add that a banner at the bottom to ACCOMPANY a generic text link can bolster it and draw more attention to it.

    "More satin bras from this and other luxury brands at Figleaves"

    While we're on the subject of effective link types, why are SEARCH BOXES such a rare animal? Search boxes are the shiznizz and hardly any vendors offer them.
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  14. #14
    ABW Ambassador Snib's Avatar
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    I don't even use traditional banners anymore. The only thing I use now are 88x31 buttons that I group together at the bottom of my site. I think my visitors are more inclined to click these and I can offer more links in less space. I get sales from these on occasion, but I'm tempted to remove them completely to improve the overall look and appeal of my site. It's probably better to have no banners at all if you'd like to build better customer loyalty and present a more professional looking site.

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  15. #15
    Outsourced Program Manager e-Gazer's Avatar
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    I've always found that text links convert higher than banners as well.
    Far higher.

    Having said that, banners provide that awareness that helps to build trust within the consumer market, which in the grand scheme of things, makes text links more effective since consumers are more likely to purchase from a brand they have seen before and visual cues have a lot to do with that.

    I would never suggest we abandon banner links altogether - they don't convert like text links do... they don't even garner as many clicks, but when we look at the big picture, they're not completely useless.

    I agree with Andy though... product links are big. They work.

  16. #16
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    What? Text links work better than banner links? We need some more studies on this.

    On a serious note, what Donuts said about the surveys. I've never filled one out, don't have the time. I really can't see some of the super affiliates or those making a bunch of money filling them out either, so I take them with a grain of salt. Mostly newbies fill those things out in my opinion.

    Obviously text links and product links convert better than banner links. But that's not to say banner links don't work. I don't use branding type banners but I've found the ones that do work for me are deal of day banners, coupon banners, hot product banners, etc. Call to action type banners.

  17. #17
    Troll Killer and best Snooper!
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    When did the superiority of text links over banner links become NEW news?

    Everybody already knew this, right?

  18. #18
    Member Jigsaw2order's Avatar
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    Regarding text links, what do affiliates like?

    - a few words
    - a sentence
    - a paragraph
    - an article

    Can you give me some ideas of what type of text links you guys need and what works best?

    Colin
    Jigsaw2orde

  19. #19
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    A few words to the point (leading to a specific product or narrow product category/section). They can always change the wording, Colin. It is the path to that section or product that they can't change, and any affiliate could use text links to specific sections of your store that they could promote differently.

    Geno

  20. #20
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    Either CJ is on to something or they are way off base. Can they jeapardize thier business by forcing affiliates down a path?? Are they trying to make all affiliates into doing paid search ads?? What's missing is their involvement in this whole discussion. With CJU coming up are any affiliates attending, are merchants going to ask for answers.

    It is my understanding that affiliates go where the brand names and products are and the conversion. If CJ makes it difficult for you to sell or if the type of links stop converting then you will take your traffic some where else. Can they really afford to one day just cut off a channel that is producing because they pick one link type over another??

  21. #21
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    What Geno said. We can change text links to fit our site.

    Typically what I like is something short, succinct, and readable. In other words, as short of a sentence as possible that explains what I'm linking to. Or, in the case of home page or category links or other things like that, just your preferred site name or category name.
    Michael Coley
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  22. #22
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    Colin,

    The ONLY part of a text link I use is the tracking - I alter it to fit my needs

  23. #23
    Member Jigsaw2order's Avatar
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    Thanks guys for pointing me in the right direction regarding text links. So its the URL rather than the actual text thats the important part. I plan on providing a range of text links with a variety of URLs for my program.

    Very helpfull, thanks again for the feedback,

    Colin
    Jigsaw2order.com

  24. #24
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Although I seldom take the text, there are many situations where I *USE* the text. For instance, in the promotion/coupon feeds, the text should be a clear, concise sentence describing the promotion. I seldom keep what the merchant provides, but I do start with it.
    Michael Coley
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  25. #25
    Action Jackson - King of the World
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    Definitely have to say product links and/or datafeed links here...prolly 75% of my links

    Tho I have been surprised on occasion to see sales from banners.

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