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Understanding market interactions

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Understanding market interactions

2008-09-11 10:53:05
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As an affiliate you want to maximize your profit, so ideally you want to find markets that are successful for both pay-per-click and SEO. So the question is – is it still worthwhile selling in a market where you can only make money with only one these methods?

In this lesson we look at Understanding Market Interactions.

Pay per click doesn't always work

Generally speaking, if you are making lots of money with pay-per-click you will also make good money with SEO.
However, the opposite isn’t always true. 

For example, the website haircutadvice.com ranks very highly in the search engines and receives lots of visitors, but it only profits from internal advertising. When we tested pay-per-click, the results were dismal!

It turns out that although there are thousands of people searching on hair cut keywords, they aren’t looking to buy. And this means they very rarely click on ads. 

Nevertheless this website, which is largely made up of free content, still makes some money through CPA offers and Google Adsense, so it’s not all bad! 

Predicting the market

You might be wondering whether there is any way that you can predict this situation when researching markets. The answer is, yes, to a certain extent. 

For example, you can see evidence that the hair style market is SEO-weighted when you search for the words ‘hair cut advice’ or ‘hair style advice’ in the search engines. There are very few, if any, pay-per-click ads on display - yet there are over a million websites containing information and pictures. 

You may well find other markets like this at some stage; markets with high numbers of people searching on the keywords, yet with very little pay-per-click advertising. 

You shouldn’t reject these markets out of hand - most other marketers will, so it can be worth your while putting together a website and earning income from SEO, albeit a smaller income than you would earn from a market that makes money from both pay-per-click and SEO.

SEO is also a fall-back position.  If you are unable to profit from pay-per-click but you’ve done everything right on your site, then you can still aim to get lots of traffic and make money that way.

Using one form of marketing to enhance another

How SEO can help improve your pay-per-click

The advantage of SEO is that you can experiment with dozens of search terms without any expense, whereas this is much more costly with pay-per-click. Although your website may only rank for a small number of search terms early on, at a later stage you might find you are ranking highly for long-tail keywords you hadn’t even thought of. 

Google Analytics is an essential tool in this situation because it shows you all the keywords people searched on that lead them to your site. Reviewing this information can help you spot new search terms to bid on in pay-per-click, and there’s a better chance they’ll be profitable terms. 

This strategy is particularly useful if you are listing on Page 2 or more of search results and wish to get greater visibility for that term. 

How pay-per-click can help improve your SEO

As we’ve learnt in previous lessons, pay-per-click can be a costly learning curve for affiliates - however, if you can afford to invest the money, you’ll find that being able to analyze the data from your pay-per-click campaigns is enormously beneficial – not only for improving your ads, but also for improving your SEO! 

Chances are, if you are making lots of money in pay-per-click, then you’ll also make a lot of money in search engine listings. 

As many as 80% of search engine users will click on the natural listings rather than pay-per-click, so it’s worth transferring the market information you learn from pay-per-click to your website. For example, you might find that ‘stop german shepherd aggression’ profits wildly in pay-per-click. Now that you know this is a successful keyword, you can make a big effort to optimize your website for that term and cash in on the free traffic too.

Lesson Summary

If you can succeed with Pay-Per-Click in a market, you can usually succeed with Search-Engine-Optimization also, but the reverse isn't always true.

You can often find out by doing a quick search and seeing whether a keyword is heavily SEO'd, or has a balance of PPC and SEO sites.

However, don't completely disregard markets that look bad for PPC - many other marketers will, which leaves you room to build a site to take advantage of  the market and gain an (albeit small) income.


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