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How to Make Money With PPC Affiliate Marketing: Learn From an Expert

Adeel Qayum writer profile photo
By Adeel Qayum
Petar Milenkovic editor profile photo
Edited by Petar Milenkovic

Updated October 9, 2023.


PPC affiliate marketing is an overlap of affiliate marketing and PPC marketing strategies. The US affiliate marketing industry as a whole is a rapidly growing one. In 2021, it clocked in at $9.1 billion, up from $6.2 billion in 2018. So naturally, PPC affiliate marketing can be a great way to generate income for those who do their research and develop a well-thought-out approach.

If you're looking for a guide to PPC affiliate marketing for beginners, you're in the right place. I'll be sharing some "behind-the-scenes" tips and considerations from my own decade of experience running all three of these types of marketing campaigns.

» This is how you create effective PPC ads

The foundation: Niche selection and keyword strategy

To make it in PPC affiliate marketing, you'll need to hit the ground running with a successful niche. The right niche will have an active and engaged target audience, with relevance and demand for the products or services you're promoting. A high demand equals high potential for profitability and minimal losses from your upfront investment.

As for keywords, they're are the lifeblood of your campaigns, since they determine where and when your ads appear. The secret sauce here is to strike a balance between high-volume general keywords and lower-volume keywords that are more specific, like long-tail keywords. With long-tail keywords, you may have less overall traffic, but those users may be more ready to buy than the users you attract with general keywords.

» Looking for innovative ways to find PPC keyword ideas?

Crafting effective landing pages and campaign optimization

Landing pages are critical: they're often the difference between another passing visitor and a converting customer. Here's a "recipe" that I use when I'm developing my own landing pages:

  • An eye-catching headline that speaks directly to the needs, wants, and behaviors of your target audience.
  • Engaging visuals that ideally showcase or emphasize the product or service you're promoting.
  • Persuasive, concise, and visually separated copy—no long, rambling blocks of text.
  • A clear, captivating call-to-action (CTA) that tells them exactly what to do next and how to do it.
  • Minimize distractions and utilize white space and sectioning to guide users down the page.
  • Make sure it's all responsive across any device, as many users will come through mobile.

You'll also need to keep optimizing as you go. Continuously review and update your keyword lists, ad copy, bidding strategies, and landing pages as you get feedback and data on which ones work and which ones don't. Managing multiple campaigns can make it tough to prioritize your adjustments, so start with the highest-impact ones. Your performance metrics will make these clear to you as they come up.

» Check out these expert tips on FB ad bidding strategies

Quality Score, ad ranking, and budgeting

Quality Score is a metric that's used by PPC platforms like Google Ads to rate the relevance and quality of different aspects of your campaigns, like keywords, ads, and landing pages.

As you might imagine, low Quality Scores tend to translate to lower rankings and higher cost per click (CPC), which can lead to poorer (and more expensive) performance in the long run.

To maintain and raise your Quality Scores, focus on things like keyword relevance, alignment of your copy with your keywords, and the quality of your landing page content. Regularly update and optimize to continuously improve.

Another consideration is budgeting. Make sure you're prioritizing the campaigns with the highest potential for return on investment (ROI), which have traits like higher Quality Scores, lower CPC, more clicks, and more conversions. But don't neglect the importance of testing and experimentation—without it, you'll never discover new, potentially better opportunities.

» Learn how to calculate and improve your PPC conversion rate

Leveraging Mayple: A partner for PPC success

If you're looking to streamline your PPC affiliate marketing efforts, consider a platform like Mayple. Mayple was designed to connect you with experts who can help build, manage, and optimize your campaigns for long-term success. You'll be able to find a specialist or agency that can help with all the things we've discussed here, like choosing the right niche, choosing your keywords, crafting landing pages, budget allocation, and more.

Hundreds of clients have seen affiliate marketing success through Mayple. For example, Glamnetic, an eCommerce brand selling magnetic eyelashes and press-on nails. After working with a Mayple expert, Glamnetic saw:

  • New affiliate marketing partnerships that generated over 4,000 new customers per month
  • The development of over 255 new affiliate partnerships
  • A new landing page, which generated a 1.8x increase in conversion rates
a website page for a cosmetics store

Achieving synergy: SEO and PPC integration

There's an interplay between search engine optimization (SEO) and PPC strategies. When you play your cards right, they can amplify your success.

For example, you can use PPC data to identify high-performing keywords, which can then be used to target the right organic keywords for your SEO strategy.

And in the other direction, strong SEO performance boosts your website's authority and trustworthiness both in the eyes of search engines and potential customers. This, in turn, can boost your PPC performance.

Marketing specialist Cody Bollerman was able to achieve this balance for a biotech client, boosting the company's online lead generation from $35 million to $83 million in just two years. He identified top converting keywords and ranked for them in Google. Over time, this led to higher authority in the eyes of Google, which earned the brand more organic keywords at no cost. He was then able to create new landing pages based on campaign performance.

a screen shot of a spreadsheet with a line of text

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Adapting strategies for long-term success

When it comes to long-term success in PPC affiliate marketing, you must adapt or face the risk of falling behind. Factors such as rising competition and evolving consumer habits can turn once-profitable keywords ineffective and make high-converting landing pages lose their appeal. In such scenarios, flexibility is more than a virtue—it's a crucial component for maximizing ROI and keeping your campaigns strong.

Take Nikon as a case study in adaptability. Seeing a drop in consumer purchases, the company shifted focus. Instead of pushing cameras, they began championing the joy of photography. They created a space for a community, transforming passive viewers into engaged participants. By recalibrating their PPC strategy like Nikon, you keep your campaigns both relevant and successful.

the sun shining through the trees is bright

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Empower your affiliate journey with PPC excellence

If you approach your campaigns with a research-oriented, strategic mindset, you'll be one step closer to making money with PPC affiliate marketing. Just remember the tips we've discussed today, like choosing the right niche and keywords, building high-converting landing pages, marrying SEO and PPC, and adapting as you go.

If you're feeling a bit overwhelmed or would like some help, check out Mayple to connect with PPC affiliate marketing experts who can help make sure you see the results you're after.