So you’re thinking of making your affiliate marketing fortune through Clickbank?
Clickbank was one of the first affiliate networks I came across when I stumbled into this amazing business model a few years ago.
But I quickly learned that it’s one you really want to avoid if you want to promote great products and earn high affiliate commissions.
You see, Clickbank is populated with tons of low-quality, low-paying affiliate programs that kinda make you cringe.
You know those shady make money online hyped up products that are all talk and no trousers?
Yeah, it’s full of those ones.
Not something you’d be proud to put your name behind.
So in this post, I’ll outline reasons why you want to avoid using Clickbank for affiliate marketing and offer some better alternatives (not Amazon Associates).
Let’s get cracking!
1. The Vast Majority of Affiliate Programs are Awful
If you take a few minutes to browse through the Clickbank marketplace, you’ll quickly discover that the platform is teeming with low-quality affiliate programs.
Even some of the most popular programs in certain categories are for products that seem like total trash.
Case in point:
The “AZ Code” is the number one product in the E-business/E-marketing section of the affiliate marketplace.
Number one in popularity!
Yet it’s full of hyped of claims of making thousands of dollars in a matter of DAYS.
We’ve all heard the saying “When it sounds too good to be true” it probably is. And even if the program was totally legit — I’m not fond of the “get rich quick” vibe it portrays.
Crypto Currency Codex is the top product in the Business/Investing category. Another one that immediately strikes me as hyped up garbage.
They claim that their students have turned $20 into $100,000 in just 3 months…
Are these guys for real?
They use some classic terms to draw the “get rich quick” crowd into the product like “weird” “low-risk” and “loophole”.
Last time I checked, Cryptocurrency was one of the most volatile markets in existence — certainly not something that’s low-risk.
And little things like the green screen video background just screams stereotypical sleaze-ball internet marketing program.
2. The People That Promote Clickbank Are Trash
Clickbank seems to attract certain types of people to their marketplace. These people don’t strike me as human beings that value traits such as honesty and integrity.
You know the ones I’m talking about:
“Make $3000 a day within 2 weeks working less 30 minutes every single day”
Pie in the sky promises of wealth and riches along with a supposedly simple, easy and straightforward system you can use to get it.
These snake-oil sleaze-balls make their money by selling overpriced programs and products that are full of fluff and lacking in substance to lazy wantrepreneurs.
The push-button solution is all a lie.
3. The Best Products Are Teeming With Competition
Because the majority of products in the Clickbank marketplace are bottom of the barrel junk — the stuff that’s half-decent is promoted by the lion share of affiliates on the platform.
This means there’s ultra-stiff competition for anything worth promoting on there.
So you may have a hard time driving traffic to the products as so many other affiliates are already doing the same thing.
The one exception is if you manage to find a traffic source that’s relatively untapped (which is rare) but certainly possible.
4. The UI is Like Something out of the 90’s
Clickbank really hasn’t put much effort into upgrading their user interface on the affiliate marketplace side.
It honestly looks like something out of the 90’s!
Check it out:
And while the dated UI may not be a dealbreaker for you, it just worsens the experience on the platform.
What’s more, it makes it harder for you to filter through the affiliate programs that are actually worth a second look.
Clickbank has taken the time to upgrade the retail side of the platform but has neglected the affiliate marketplace.
5. The Vetting Process is Worryingly Basic
The quality of published affiliate programs in the Clickbank marketplace is a testament to the weak process for approving products on the platform.
Practically anyone can write an ebook and get it published within a few days.
The guys at Clickbank seem to be really keen to get as many products on their platform as possible.
But this mantra has clearly backfired as they’ve ended up with a marketplace full of sub-standard products that don’t offer much value.
6. They charge you for having a dormant account
That’s exactly right.
They take your money if you leave it in your account for a certain period of time.
This rule is so strange — when I first came across this, I really struggled to understand why they chose to do this to their affiliates.
So here’s the gist:
As stated in their knowledgebase article, having a positive balance for an extended period of time will lead to “dormancy fees” being deducted from your account.
They reserve the right to deduct up to $100 a month from accounts that haven’t seen any activity for a few months.
This has obviously led to some people losing money from their Clickbank accounts — who reads T’s and C’s anyway?
Imagine busting your balls to successfully promote a product, only for Clickbank to remove your hard-earned cash from your account a few months later.
7. The customer service and refund policy is questionable
Alarm bells are ringing.
Because Clickbank has a 1-star rating on Consumer Affairs with plenty of people complaining about products they’ve bought through the marketplace.
Let’s have a look at what some of these people are saying:
Laura had some issues with unauthorised payments…
Nicky received a totally different product from the one he purchased…
And Ilona had some good ol’ fashioned horrible customer service…
Does this surprise you?
It shouldn’t. Looking at some of the products they’ve allowed in their marketplace, it’s no shock that people have had trouble with refunds and customer support.
A superior alternative to Clickbank
So you’ve probably gathered that Clickbank really isn’t the best affiliate network to find awesome products to promote.
So where do you find the best affiliate programs?
Here’s the rub:
Most people don’t know about high-ticket affiliate programs. These are products/services that pay upwards of $1000 per sale — exactly the type of stuff you want to be promoting.
So instead of selling hundreds of e-books for a handful of dollars, you can focus on promoting quality goods and services for much more money.
I’ve written an extensive post that outlines these concepts and reveals some awesome affiliate programs that pay really well, you can check it out here.
Aside from that, you must do your own research. Examine your areas of interest and look for people creating great courses/products that you can promote in that space.
Many of the best affiliate programs aren’t part of an affiliate network.
And if you’re new to affiliate marketing, make sure you get educated so you have the best chance of making this work.
Related Content: How to start a blog: the ultimate guide
Bringing it all together
So you now know what to avoid when it comes to affiliate marketing. That being said, nothing is black and white because exceptions always exist. Some products on Clickbank are great — but all thing considered, there are far better alternatives out there when it comes to sourcing and promoting high-quality products as an affiliate.
So take the time to empower yourself with the right affiliate skills and align yourself with quality products that you’re proud to promote. This will help you maximize your chances of success!
I’m a London-born lover of technology, obsessed with online business, passive income and the digital economy. I love learning, researching and curating the most valuable resources to save you time, money and help you discover the truth on what it actually takes to achieve your goals.