To find success in the world of affiliate marketing and lead generation, you need to know how to track, measure and improve your profit margins. This is one of the most important aspects of running a successful business that many entrepreneurs tend to slack off in. The reason for this is usually simple — either there is little interest or lack in knowledge or how to do this, or there is simply too much focus on the overall volume and numbers.
With all of this in mind, I wanted to provide a quick reference guide on three helpful ways to squeeze even more profits out of your ad campaigns. The great thing about this is that each of these methods can be used for affiliate marketing campaigns, any products or services you might currently offer, or even if you are running a simple e-commerce site.
Bottom line… if you are willing to put in the time and effort to improve your profit margins, your business can continue to scale indefinitely.
In previous years, traffic generation was all about SEO and doing pay per click marketing in the search results. For the most part, this was pretty simple in terms of tracking which keywords and search phrases were delivering the best ROI. Jump forward to today and you will find a wide range of traffic sources, which are coming from many different parts of the world and from a plethora of computers and mobile devices in the process.
So, what does this mean for the average marketer or online business? Simple… you need to be properly tracking conversions, ad costs and revenue on as many levels as possible. Not just your paid traffic sources, but also your free organic traffic as well.
In most cases, this can be done with a custom tracking system or any CRM you might be using to track sales/leads/customers. Post Affiliate Pro for example already has most of these features built in. If you are relying solely on third party networks for traffic, most of them will provide you with pixel tracking or the placing of a pixel to properly track all sales.
For advanced affiliate marketers and brands, this is likely a no-brainer — however, it’s still something many of them aren’t maximizing.
With all of the technology and tracking platforms available today, there is no reason why you shouldn’t know how much you are spending daily, what ads are performing best, what your profit margins are and which ad campaigns are costing you money. Stick with your winning ad campaigns and remove all of the losers and underperformers. It’s a simple message and one that will instantly improve your profit margins overnight when implemented correctly.
In addition to tracking all elements of your ad campaigns, you also want to make sure the management of your business and it’s marketing is as closely knit together as possible. In previous years, you would likely have to get a web hosting provider, a list host, a tracking platform, a webinar host and another solution for your e-commerce and marketing. Now the process has become a lot more automated and seamless.
A perfect example of a company that has made this type of transition over the years to not only better grow their own business, but also that of their clients, is GetResponse. With their all-in-one solution, anyone can go live with new landing pages, email signup forms, webinars and everything in between. The real benefit here is that you can actually link all of these components together and form a funnel process, while also being able to track where people might be falling off or not completing the process. You can see an example below of how all of these processes can be tied together and provides mailing list and subscribers with different call to actions and results, based on what direction they might currently be taking on your site.
While the concept of funnels and automated solutions are nothing new, it is quickly becoming more time-consuming and costly to run each of these components through different providers. One of the best ways to improve ROI for any online business is to have an automated marketing solution in place. This allows for better management and tracking of your data, and also saving time and resources in the process. Even if you start with a simple lead capture tool to grab an email address from your site visitor, this is enough to start the engagement and follow up process. You could then implement advanced tracking and follow-ups as you get more comfortable with the process.
The more hands-on management and time you can eliminate from your business, the more profit you can put back into your pocket. If you don’t currently have an automation system or funnel in place, it’s definitely time to consider using one.
Retargeting is one of the absolute best ways to increase your profit margins. The concept of retargeting is quite simple. If you want to see a detailed walkthrough on the process, HubSpot has a nice guide, but I will do a short explanation of my own below.
If someone went to your website or online store and completed a specific action, perfect! If not, they likely would be lost and never come back. With retargeting in place, site owners and marketers can track their site visitors and continue to send advertisements to them as they are visiting other websites. The technology behind all of this is quite advanced, but as an advertiser, it’s a simple as adding a pixel to your site and creating an ad campaign.
Platforms like Google Adwords, Facebook Ads, and many other third-parties are all offering this type of marketing right now. The reason why retargeting works so well, is that you are only advertising to audiences that have proven to be interested in your site and service, while also seeing higher click-through and conversion rates in the process.
To get the most out of retargeting, site owners should have pixel tracking on all of their sites and pages. I also recommend you take a listen to this interview with Larry Kim, who has generated millions of dollars for his many businesses through the use of retargeting on both websites, social networks and mobile viewing. The better your tracking and follow-up ad campaigns, the higher the conversions, response, and engagement you will see.
The world of affiliate marketing and online lead generation is always growing, but so is the competition that you are up against. To continually compete in this open space and competitive world, you will need to continually tweak your ad campaigns to improve profit margins wherever possible.
The important thing to remember here is that a slight increase in profit margin equals out to a huge incremental increase over time. Just a 5% swing in conversions can deliver hundreds of thousands of dollars for a marketing campaign or e-commerce site over the course of a year.
Take a look at your existing ad campaigns and run through the list above once again. Even if you are only willing to put in the time and effort to tweak just a few of your campaigns, it will be enough to set things into motion and show what is possible for the rest of your campaign. Don’t try to out-spend or out-market the competition, simply improve what you have in place.
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