Category Archives: CPA Marketing

CPA Marketing Overview

How To Drive Traffic

No matter what offers you are promoting, you need traffic in order to get conversions and make money. Successful Internet Marketers know how to drive traffic to their sites.

For the sake of simplicity, let’s divide traffic into paid traffic and organic traffic. Paid traffic is of course traffic you pay for, examples are PPC, PPV and CPM. Organic traffic used to be traffic from search engines but with the success of social media and youtube it is possible to get a lot of free traffic from not only search engines.

As a rule of thumb, if you are rely on search engine traffic, you generally want to promote offers that pay at least $10, preferably much more. Trying to make money promoting free CPA offers that pay just a dollor with only search engine traffic requires a lot of traffic. Low paying CPA offers are in most cases best for paid traffic. If you have a lot of friends on facebook or followers on twitter, they can be very useful.

Organic traffic has the advantage that it is free. The main disadvantage is that it takes time to build up organic traffic. In many markets, most keywords are very competitive and getting onto the first page of google will take a lot of time and effort. Still, the simplest way of making money, is to find a keyword you can target and set up a web site optimized for that specific keyword. You need another couple of pages targeting related keywords as well.

George Brown’s Google Sniper was a very efficient way of making money a couple of years ago. Sniper sites are small sites that target just one or very few buyer’s keywords. The sites were optimized for the keyword in a number of ways. This used to work fine but Google did not like such sites and has come up with a number of ways of slapping sniper sites. It is still possible to make money with sniper sites but it is much tougher than it used to be. And a lot of people think that it will become even tougher in the future.

Instead so called authority sites have started to take over the first pages of Google. The drawback with authority sites is that it takes much longer to create them than to create sniper sites. Unfortunately, just because you build a large site with plenty of quality content does not guarantee that Google will like it.

The main advantage of paid traffic is that you get result at once. You set up a campaign and the traffic starts to flow, organic traffic on the other hand takes weeks to get results. But this also means that paid traffic often becomes a fast way of losing a lot of money. Unless you have money you don’t mind losing, avoid paid traffic.

In most cases, non-targeted traffic converts very poorly, while targeted traffic often turns out to be far too expensive. The simplest way of getting started with paid traffic is to spy on the competition. Find out what offers are continuously being advertised on sites with paid traffic. These adverts are generating a profit, otherwise they would not be around for long. Now you know which offers are winners, next you need to find similar, or the same, offers and find sites you can put your own adverts on. It requires a fair bit of work but is pretty straight forward.


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Website Banner Advertising

One of the most popular ways of driving traffic on the Internet is onsite banners. Banners are simply pictures that are clickable. You can use banners to link directly to the landing page or to your own page.

Banner come in number of different banner sizes. The most common sizes are the skyscraper, either 120×600 or 160×600 (sometimes called wide skyscraper), leaderboard (728×90) and the rectangle, or medium rectangle (300×250) A lot of smaller sizes exist as well.

Being successful with text ads generally means finding the right keywords. Banner ads on the other hand, generally means knowing the demographics of the market. Although it is possible to pay per click for banners it is more common to either pay per impressions (CPM, meaning one thousand impressions) or to buy a space at a website for a week or month.

This makes banner advertising tricky, you can lose a lot of money if you pay per impression for a banner on the wrong website. On the other hand, if you manage to get the right banner onto the right website, your cost per click can be very low.

Although it is possible to have your ad displayed on all websites an advertising company manages, this is almost always a very inefficient and very expensive way. You have a much better chance of being successful if you know the demographics of your target market, for example gender, age and location. Then you try to find websites that your target market is likely to visit. You can use google adplanner and to find out who visits what sites.

A good banner is essential if you pay per impression or per week. In most cases, it is best to get banners done by professionals. It is cheap to get banners made. If you already know what websites you are going to buy ad space on, you probably know what banner size you need. Selecting the right banner size is tricky, every internet marketer has his own favourite size. If you do not know what size to use, the skyscrapers, either 120×600 or 160×600, are generally a good bet.

More important than the banner size is the location of the banner on the webpage. Unless you are paying per click, your banner must be above the fold, that is, the visitor must see it without having to scroll. Paying per impression for a banner which can only be seen if the visitor scrolls down the page is virtually guaranteed to be a waste of money.

Also, watch out for web pages that have too many banners. Some websites are jampacked with ads which generally means the surfers ignore all banners.

All in all, it is possible to make good money using banners but only if you have the right banner on the right website and a good landing page. The weakest link in the chain will determine your success.


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How To Promote CPA Offers

First, check the terms and conditions of the CPA offer you are going to promote. Each offer has its own limitations how it can be promoted. The most common ways of promoting a CPA offers are:



A double opt in list is generally required. Just emailing offers to a list of email addresses bought on ebay will probably get your CPA affiliate account terminated.



This includes standard PPC marketing, for example Google Adwords and Bing. Note that many CPA offers restrict what keywords you can bid on. Another thing to keep in mind is that direct linking to CPA offers on Google Adwords will get your account terminated.



Contextual in CPA marketing generally means PPV, Pay Per View, marketing. PPV is based on adware, users download software, for example a game or a screen saver, which runs in the background and displays your ad when the user enters a term related to your offer, for example a search on google for weight loss can trigger an ad about acai berry.



Banners are clickable pictures. Banners come in a lot of sizes. Most CPA offers include banners you can use to promote the offer. But successful CPA affiliates generally create their own banners, or more exactly pay someone to create banners for them.


Social Media

Promoting offers in social media, for example facebook, has become popular. Note that most people using social media are not looking for something to buy, they are chatting with friends. This means that offers that require credit card details generally convert poorly on social media. But some simple CPA offers, such as an email submit, can turn out to be a winner.


Always make sure that you know the terms and conditions of the offer you are promoting. If you get caught promoting a CPA offer using methods that are not allowed, your account will most likely be terminated.

Another basic thing to do is to check for what countries a CPA offer is valid for. If you are paying for the traffic, you want to be sure that you are only paying for traffic from the countries you specify. Some offers that can be promoted world wide, will pay differently depending on in which country the customer is located. The payout for most countries may be just a tenth, or even less, of the payout for a US customer.

Some offers can be incentivized. That means you can offer your prospects something if they accept the CPA offer. Obviously, you can only try to bribe people for CPA offers that are incentive offers. For example, you could offer a free ebook about a related topic if people sign up using your link. If the offer is a simple email submit, the conversion rate can be very high. Most CPA offers can not be incentivized, so remember to check the terms and conditions of the offer.


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Types of CPA Offers

The basic CPA offers types are:


E-mail submits

Email submits are very simple CPA offers. You get paid when a visitor enters a valid email address. E-mail submits do not pay much per conversion but since no credit card details are needed, conversion rates can be very high. Payout varies but is often about a dollar per conversion.


ZIP submits

ZIP submits are simple CPA offers. You get paid when a visitors enters a valid ZIP code. Like E-mail submits, you do not get paid much per conversion but since not much is required, the conversion rates can be very high. Payout varies but is roughly the same as for E-mail submits.


Short forms

Short form CPA offers require more information than E-mail submits and ZIP submits. But the number of fields needed is limited. The visitor may be asked for full address, email address, date of birth and gender. But generally, no credit card details are needed.  Dating offers often use short forms. Payout for short forms can be from just a dollar up towards ten dollars.


Long forms

Long form CPA offers are similar to short form offers but the visitor has to supply more information. Insurance or credit card companies often use long forms. Due to the amount of information required for a successful conversion, conversion rates are generally much lower than for simple offers like E-mail submits and ZIP submits. On the other hand, the commission for long forms is often generous, common payout start from $20 and go up towards $40.


Free trials

Free trials generally require credit card details. The customer has to pay a shipping and handling fee for the trial, generally around $5. And the company will automatically ship, and bill, the customer a new batch once the trial period has ended. Unless the customer cancels the subscription. The CPA affiliate gets paid as soon as a customer signs up for the free trial, and the commission is paid even if the customer cancels the subscription before the first shipment is due. For CPA affiliates free trials can be lucrative, the payout is often between $20 and $40.



CPA sales offers are the same as in traditional affiliate marketing. You get paid when a customers makes a purchase using your link. The payout varies but is often fairly high, from $20 and upwards. The main trouble is of course that a purchase is needed before you get paid. This make the conversion rates lower than for most other types of CPA offers.



CPA download offers are software that can be downloaded for free. The software can be a game or toolbar utility. The software also includes some kind of adverting, but this is no malware or virus. The user can remove the software at any time. As a CPA affiliate, you get paid once someone has downloaded and installed the software on their computer. Targeted to the right audience free downloads can be very profitable. The customers do not need to supply any personal information or credit card details, they just download a piece of software.


PIN submits

PIN submit offers are downloads to a cell/mobile phone. The customer enters his mobile number and will get a PIN code sent to the number. In order to get the download, for example a ring tone, the PIN code has to be entered. Payout for CPA PIN submits starts from about $2 and go up towards $10.


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CPA Marketing Introduction

CPA Marketing is not much different from traditional affiliate marketing. As a CPA affiliate, sometimes called CPA publisher, you drive traffic to a landing page. The landing page promotes a product or service offered by a CPA advertiser, sometimes called CPA marketer or seller.

As a CPA affiliate you get paid every time a visitor takes an action. This can be making a purchase, the same as in traditional affiliate marketing. But the action can also be something that does not require any credit card details, for example just submitting a valid email address. A lot of CPA affiliates have managed to make big money by converting a huge number of simple email submits or Zip Code submits. The payout is generally low, often just a little bit more than a dollar. But since no purchase or credit card details are needed, the conversion rates can often be well above 10%

Most CPA networks have a wide range of CPA offers. The can be the simple email submits and ZIP Code submits. Other offers that do not require credit card details short and long forms. Here the visitor has to enter more information, so the payout is better. CPA networks have traditional sales offers but also free trials. Here the payout can be very good but credit card details are needed, so the conversion rates are generally lower. Most free trial offers include a shipping and handling fee to be paid upfront by the customer. Other offers are downloads and PIN submits (for mobile phones) Promoted to the right audience these offers can be very profitable.

In order to be able to promote CPA offers, you need to be approved by the CPA networks. It is generally good enough to be member of a just a few of the bigger networks. Getting accepted by the CPA networks can be difficult, especially for beginners. But if you have professional email address, not a free hotmail, gmail or similar email addresses and a professionally looking web site you are quite likely to be accepted by many of the CPA networks. You should also use a company, rather than applying in your own name. You need a telephone number as well, the CPA network will call you and interview you before accepting you as a CPA affiliate. So make sure that you are prepared to answer questions such as how you are going to promote offers and what kind of offers you are going to promote.

But being member of a couple of CPA networks will not automatically make you rich. You need to know how to drive traffic to the CPA offers. But before you start to drive traffic to a specific CPA offer read the restrictions (Terms of Service) for that offer. Most CPA offers have restrictions how it can be promoted, for example by email only. This is very important, since if you are promoting an offer in a way that is not allowed, your account may get terminated. Most CPA offers are also limited to specific countries. So if you are paying for the traffic, you want to make sure that you are only paying for traffic from the countries that are allowed for that campaign.


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CPA Marketing Definitions

Here are some of the basic terms used in CPA marketing.

CPA Affiliate, also called CPA Publisher, is the one who generates leads or sales. This means you are the one who drives traffic to the CPA offers.

CPA Advertiser, also called CPA Marketer or CPA Seller, is the one who has an offer for which they are prepared to pay for leads. The CPA affiliates generate leads for the CPA advertisers.

CPA Networks are the organizations that CPA affiliates and CPA advertisers join. The CPA networks take a share of money paid by the advertisers.

CPA stands for Cost Per Action, also sometimes referred to as Cost Per Acquisition.

Incentivized CPA offer, or just incentivized offer, is an offer that can be promoted with giving the visitor something in return for signing up through your affiliate link. For example, you could offer a free report about efficient fat-burning exercises to them who sign up for an acai berry free trial using your CPA link.


The following terms are not specific to CPA marketing, but very often used in CPA marketing.

CPM stands for Cost Per Mille. It is generally used for banner ads. CPM stands for thousand impressions. So if you pay $5 CPM, means that you pay $5 to get your banner displayed to 1000 visitors.

PPC stands for Pay Per Click. It is an Internet advertising model based in which advertisers pay only when their ad is clicked. A lot of PPC providers exist but Google AdWords is by far the biggest. Google AdWords together with Yahoo! and Microsoft AdCenter (Bing) are the Tier 1 PPC Providers.

PPV stands for Pay Per View. In Internet marketing it is also known as contextual advertising or cost per view advertising.

Media Buy is defined as purchase of time or space in an advertising medium, such as radio, television or print space. In Internet marketing this often means buying advertisement space on a website, generally used for a banner ad.

SEO stands for Search Engine optimization. It refers to the process of increasing the volume of organic (free) traffic to a web site, sometimes also the process of improving the quality of the traffic. Often this means trying to get a higher ranking on Google. SEO can be on-site (on-page), for example by optimizing a web page for a specific keyword, or off-site (off-page), for example creating backlinks, that is, creating links from other web sites to your web page.

Geo Targeting in Internet marketing is the process of determining the geographic location (the physical location) of a visitor and displaying different content to the visitor based on his location.


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How To Join CPA Networks

Joining CPA Networks has become more difficult. But with the right preparations it will be possible to join a couple of the bigger networks. It is enough to be a member of a couple of the bigger CPA networks. Joining too many CPA networks can be counterproductive. The CPA networks keep on introducing new CPA offers all the time, and terminating old offers. Promoting offers that are no longer valid will not make you any money so it is paramount that know what offers have been withdrawn.

So how do you get accepted by the CPA networks? Every network has its own rules for what kind of affiliates they will accept. But there are some basic guidelines that will improve your chances to get accepted. The basic things you should do before applying are:

– set up your own company

– set up a professionally looking website, in a CPA related niche

– prepared your business plan, what kind of offers to promote and how to drive traffic


By having a company you make a much more professional impression than if you are applying in your own name. Make sure to choose a suitable name and buy a .com domain and use it for your emails.

It has become tougher to join CPA networks. Without a professionally looking website, in a CPA related niche, you will look like a lightweight. Fortunately, it is easy to get a website. Either find a suitable template or go to elance and pay someone. Of course, you need web hosting as well. Web hosting is cheap nowadays, although you may want to avoid the cheapest providers. For just $15/month you can get unlimited numbers of web servers with a lot of features. Hostgator is one of the main providers, most people seem to be happy with them. You can find cheaper hosting than HostGator but HostGator has excellent customer support.

The CPA networks want honest affiliates who have clear ideas what they are going to promote and how they are going to promote offers. Having little experience does not automatically disqualify you. If you tell them you are at the moment focusing on one or two ways of driving traffic, and later on will try other ways of driving traffic, many networks will accept you.

The CPA networks are unlikely to accept you without a short phone interview. The networks want to make sure not only that they are dealing with real people but also with professional people. Thus, the phone interview is very important, especially if you are new to CPA marketing. You may want to ring the CPA network a few hours after you have submitted your application. This makes you look serious and you still remember what you told them in your online application. Also, sometimes the networks may reject applications without even calling the applicant. By ringing them, you will at least get a fair chance to be accepted by them. Make sure you know what kind of offers you prefer to promote and how you are going to promote them.

Two of the easiest CPA networks to join have been MaxBounty and PeerFly. If you are a beginner, you may want to try them first.

If you have trouble getting accepted by the CPA Networks, you can try to promote the products at You just need to sign up and then start promoting the products. But as always, first read the terms and conditions so you are not getting caught promoting any product in a way that is not allowed. ClickBank is another alternative which is still going strong. Here you can learn more about ClickBank


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