Top 10 ClickBank Merchant Mistakes

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I found this very interesting article for clickbank merchants
I ashamed to say, i’ve make a few of those mistakes :$

Top 10 ClickBank Merchant Mistakes
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Author: Stephen Carter

If you sell digital goods on the web there is a very good chance that you have either considered selling your wares through the ClickBank merchant network, or you are already doing so. ClickBank offers some fantastic advantages to the seller, not the least of which is its very large affiliate base. But time and again merchants fail to harness the full power of ClickBank by doing nothing less than shooting themselves in the foot with behavior that is just plain, well… stupid. Sure, I could have said pitiful, but they are hard to pity.

I have seen all the follies a ClickBank merchant can make. I have visited every sales page of every merchant in the ClickBank network. I had to. It was the only way I could build my ClickBank review site. I needed to see every offering available to the public. What I learned about great sales pages I can relate some other time. What I can tell you about the sites that made me grate my teeth can be summarized in my list of the top 10 things a ClickBank merchant can do to destroy their business:

1. Be A Clueless Merchant

The number one mistake you can make as a merchant is to add your site to the ClickBank merchant network before you are ready to receive potential customers. I have lost count of the number of times have I been to what should have been a sales page, only to discover a generic web hosting page announcing to the merchant (not to me) that this is the homepage of their future web site. Great first impression. Those 100,000 affiliates you bated with your new offering? You just slammed the door on their faces. Think they will ever be back to promote you? Not a chance in hell.

2. Be Vague About Your Merchant Offering

When I go to a merchant site it is with the express intention of finding the one graphic that will summarize the merchant offering in a well-defined way. If an ebook is being sold, I look for an ebook cover to place near the ebook description on my site. Every sales page that offers an ebook should display a cover. There is no exception to this rule. When I see a cover I know immediately what is for sale. If a piece of software is being offered I expect a virtual software box to be present. Failing this, I look around for ANY graphic that can be used to represent the site. Amazingly 27 percent of ClickBank sales pages have NO usable image whatsoever. These sites are begging to be ignored, and of course, they are ignored. These sites NEVER appear in the listings of popular ClickBank merchant pages.

3. Treat Every Prospect Like An Idiot

Only 7 copies left. Once this door closes it will never open again! Learn the secrets to BLAH BLAH BLAH that the EXPERTS do NOT want you to know! Learn the SHOCKING truth now, while there is still time! At last, someone who is FED UP with the system and is willing to spill the beans! Who else wants to make $1000 A DAY for 30 minutes of work?

Brother, if this is great sales copy, it surely is not original. If you are going to use canned sales copy to reel in prospects, at least show your audience a little respect and rewrite the copy to make it original. Nothing warns me faster that the offering is junk than rehashed sales copy. If the blurb is not original, how likely is it that the goods are any better?

4. Fake It, Poorly

Even if the sales copy is not spectacularly bad, there is the question of credibility. If I am on the site of a merchant who is offering to teach me how to make piles of cash on the internet the way he or she does every day, then I had better be looking at a web site that has obviously had money poured into it. There should be polished graphics and styling throughout the pages. There should be clear signs that a professional web designer has spent days pouring their talent into the site. Why? Because someone who has made money knows that spruced-up pages make back much more than was invested to produce them. If the sales page looks home-made it is because that “self-made millionaire” does not have the coin to risk on web design.

5. Ignore The Bandwidth Considerations Of Your Prospect

Not everyone who comes to your merchant sales page will have a high-speed connection. This means that you need to be careful about how you handle images appearing on your pages. Teach yourself the basic facts about images. Learn the difference between PNG, GIF, and JPG images. Determine what the file size is of each image that appears on your page. If an image is bigger than 20 kilobytes, ask yourself why that is.

If you specify the width and height of an image using the IMG tag, made sure the numbers you provide represent the ACTUAL width and height of the image in pixels. I have seen monster images 1000 pixels wide by 1000 pixels high shoehorned into a display area 100 pixels wide by 100 pixels high. The download time for this image is 100 times longer than for an equivalent image of dimensions 100 x 100 pixels. On a high-speed connection your page might load in 5 seconds. For everyone else it is taking more than 6 minutes! Moral: ALWAYS resize your images to the size they are displayed on your site.

6. Use Multiple Payment Processors

If you are a ClickBank merchant who offers customers alternative payment processing options, such as Paydotcom, you are doing your customer a favor, but very likely at your expense. If you had been banking on both ClickBank and Paydotcom affiliates to promote you, think again. ClickBank affiliates will know that half of their commissions could be lost when referred customers pay through Paydotcom. Likewise, Paydotcom affiliates will know that half their commissions could be lost when referred customers pay through ClickBank. Neither will see any good reason to promote you, and few will. Up to 90 percent of the customers of a successful merchant are referred by affiliates. Therefore, offering multiple payment processing options could reduce your number of sales significantly.

7. Ignore The Concerns Of Your ClickBank Affiliates

As mentioned above, up to 90 percent of your business can be attributed to ClickBank affiliates who herd relevant traffic to your site. The service these affiliates offer should not be undervalued. The number one concern of affiliates, and rightly so, is that they should be paid for their service. You can help alleviate this concern by NOT leaving the affiliate ID in the hoplink on your site, which might allow savvy customers to remove it and deny the affiliate their rightful commission. Research this topic. Learn how to guard the affiliate ID, and pass it on to ClickBank when a transaction is made. Treat your affiliates right, and they will pay you back with redoubled effort to make your business a success. Allow them to be cheated and you will find yourself marketing your product on your own.

8. Offer A Derivative Product

The best merchants in the ClickBank network, the most successful merchants, are offering their customers a one-of-a-kind product. They did not arrive at their offering by just slapping together information that can be obtained in a hundred other places. They put some thought into creating something distinctly their own. They made their mark by coming up with something original, which at the same time solves a problem for which a lot of people need a solution. If you are offering something that 100 other people are offering, then you should expect to share in the diluted customer base. If you want to dominant your market, even if a niche market, produce something that sets you apart. Aspire to produce the offering that inspires others to copy you. Do not settle for mediocrity. Sure, there are thousands of run-of-the-mill merchants in the ClickBank marketplace. But they are NOT making any money.

9. Offer A Worthless Product

Worse than the derivative product by far is the product that purports to solve the specific problem that brought the customer to your site, but in fact does no such thing. These are the kinds of products that spring from the minds of wishful thinkers, and are based on theory rather than experience. If you have a great idea for making money, for example, rigorously test it before writing an ebook that claims how easy it is to create wealth. If you write an ebook on how to groom your dog, you had better own at least one dog and be in the habit of grooming it. How else to know about the problems a real dog owner faces? Do not expect people to pay for your ideas. They will only be willing to part with their money for solutions based on experience.

10. Scare The BeeJeebies Out Of Your Visitors

As a matter of course, I regularly spider the homepages of all ClickBank Merchants. Imagine my surprise when my virus-scan software reported a virus on one of these merchant pages. If your visitors detect the same thing don’t expect them EVER to return. Do yourself a favor and keep a current copy of your homepage some place where your virus-scan software will find it. If you have a problem, you want to know about it, and fix it, before anyone else gets the chance to broadcast the problem. Anything that triggers virus-scan software requires immediate attention, even if the triggering agent is not actually a real virus.

11. Fail To Be A ClickBank Hotshot

Consider this one a bonus. Your business will benefit from anything you can do to increase your credibility in the eyes of prospects visiting your site. So look for ways to achieve this. If you offer an exceptional product, it should not be difficult to obtain a quality seal to place on your sales page which certifies that your offering has been judged worthy and is recommended by consumers. Type “ClickBank Quality Seal” into your favorite search engine to come up with ideas.

Testimonials also work well to instill trust, but do not add those backed up merely by a name. Pete Holsworth from Colorado swears by your product. But who is Pete Holsworth? Is he real? Or is he a figment of your imagination? Offer testimony from authenticated reviewers only.

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