Are Paid Ads Worth It For Affiliate Marketing?

Last Updated on November 23, 2022

Are Paid Ads Worth It For Affiliate Marketing? At first glance, free traffic may be preferable because, well, it’s free! Everyone appreciates something they don’t have to pay for, but there must be a catch, right?

The problem with optimizing your affiliate marketing content solely for free traffic is that it takes a long time to see significant growth.

With so many other content creators publishing similar content on the same topics, it’s no surprise that establishing a consistent stream of free traffic can take time.

People who prefer free traffic usually invest time in learning the best SEO techniques.

Are Paid Ads Worth It For Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate programs can help you earn extra money or even a full-time income from home. Yes, it is worth it because many seasoned marketers rely on paid advertising campaigns to generate sales, and there are numerous advertising networks with which you can collaborate.

Can Paid Ads Be Used for Affiliate Marketing?

Yes, the answer is yes! Purchasing paid traffic can assist affiliate websites in performing better and reaching the most engaged, interested audiences.

Successful affiliate marketers can target specific customer demographics by launching paid ads in strategic locations across the web. For example, if they run affiliate campaigns for tech companies, they can only reach those interested in tech-related content and products.

Of course, using paid traffic for affiliate marketing has a financial cost. If done correctly, the revenue generated by those affiliate campaigns will far outweigh the cost of any paid traffic ads, ensuring that marketers profit from their efforts.

Where Do Affiliate Marketers Get Their Traffic?

Publishers can use a variety of platforms to obtain paid traffic for affiliate marketing. Each has its own set of advantages, tools, and methods for successful promotion.

The best traffic sources for affiliate marketing ads are, in particular:


PPC advertising is the process of purchasing ad space on search results pages. A fashion brand, for example, might target people searching for “best winter looks,” ensuring that their content appears as one of the top results.

PPC has numerous advantages for affiliate marketers. If you can successfully bid on one of those top spots and have SEO-optimized content to back it up, you could potentially reach millions of target customers searching for your products.

However, the market is extremely competitive, with no guarantee that your bids will be successful or drive clicks.

Google Ads is the most prominent PPC advertising platform, allowing businesses to advertise across the network of the search giant. Participants must simply ensure that their ads meet Google’s criteria, which include keyword relevance, landing page quality, and, of course, engaging content.

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Link and Banner Ads

Link and banner ads are types of display ads that can appear on a web page in a variety of shapes, sizes, and placements.

For example, a publisher may place banner ads at the top of its articles or in the sidebar of its homepage. When readers click on these banner ads, they may be directed to a product or landing page where they can learn more about the advertised products and services.

Link and banner ads are excellent for generating impressions and reaching out to pre-existing publisher audiences.

The problem is that they frequently result in lower clickthrough rates (CTR) than other forms of advertising. This is because many users use ad-blocking software to avoid seeing these ads. Even those who do see them can develop banner blindness, which means they ignore and scroll right past banner ads without ever registering or engaging with them.

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Ads on Social Media

Paid placements on social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are known as social media ads. Businesses can purchase these placements through the ad networks of each platform.

Instagram, for example, provides in-feed image, video, and carousel ads in addition to Instagram Stories ads. Some of these ads even include call-to-action or “buy” buttons, allowing users to make purchases directly from the app or website.

Businesses can reach consumers where they are already engaging with content from friends, family, and other brands, and where they are interested in seeing new products, by advertising on social media. In fact, nearly half of all internet users conduct product research on social media.

Marketers must simply ensure that their social media ad creative matches the language and feel of the organic in-feed content and adds value to the user.

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Native Marketing

The process of creating ads that match the form and function of their surrounding content so that they fit seamlessly into the user experience is known as native advertising. Native ads are less disruptive because they resemble organic content, and consumers are more likely to respond to them.

While social and search ads are examples of native advertising, companies can also use the open web to reach engaged audiences of readers on premium publisher websites. Affiliate marketing campaigns can be launched by brands in the form of recommended articles at the top, side, middle, or bottom of articles on a relevant publisher’s site, for example. This allows them to reach readers just as they are getting ready to engage with something new.

Affiliate marketing’s best-paid traffic sources

When considering paid traffic for marketing your affiliate content, we must determine which platforms will provide the best return. We don’t want to invest in a platform that doesn’t cater to our target audience or produce the best results.

While testing your paid ads is a great way to determine which platform is best for you, let’s make sure we do our homework and make an informed decision. Here are some of the most popular paid traffic sources for affiliate marketing, as well as reasons why they might be a good fit for you.

Google AdWords

Google Adwords is the paid advertising platform provided by Google. When you type a search query into Google, you’ll notice that one to three ads appear at the top of the search results page before the organically ranked website pages. This allows you to optimize your paid ads for people who are already searching for similar keywords on Google.

Given that Google accounts for 77% of all online searches, it’s safe to say that Google Adwords can be a good fit for almost any entrepreneur or content creator! Because so many people already use Google, you can meet them where they are.

When people are ready to make a purchase, they frequently use a search engine. This is because people believe Google will provide them with the most relevant answer to their queries. It’s an excellent place to test your affiliate marketing ad targeting.

Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is distinct in that it is not limited to a single search engine or social media advertising platform. An influencer, defined as someone who motivates many people to take action, can promote affiliate products virtually anywhere. Influencer marketing could be a good fit for you if you are developing your personal brand and want to make affiliate marketing one of your primary sources of income.

Influencer marketing is primarily for people who have a large following on specific social media platforms or through their website, but as a micro-influencer, you can also create great affiliate marketing content

As an influencer, you can experiment with various types of paid marketing channels knowing that you already have a captive audience. People are more likely to click on your affiliate ad and buy from you if they already know your name and trust you. This kind of influence is priceless!

Facebook Ads

Because Facebook is the most popular social media platform, it’s no surprise that they have the most prominent social media advertising platform. With its unique, updated features, it has some of the best audience-targeting capabilities available.

Almost every generation has a significant presence on Facebook. You’re bound to find people in your target market on Facebook, which has 2.2 billion active users. Facebook Ads provides advanced targeting options, allowing you to target your affiliate marketing content to a very specific audience.

Facebook Ads allow you to place a hidden Facebook Pixel on your website to capture the attention of people who have previously visited your website (which is called retargeting).

Someone who has heard of you before is easier to convert than someone who has never heard of you. Facebook Ads also allows you to target your ads based on which Facebook pages people like, which groups they belong to, and other Facebook-specific information.

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Instagram Ads

Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, has also grown into a social media behemoth, particularly in the last five years with the introduction of Instagram Stories and Instagram Live. With so many features, Instagram is expertly monetizing its evolving platform through Instagram Ads.

Instagram has attracted over 600 million active users due to its design for visually-loving people. Instagram has quickly become a Millennial favorite, with 59% of 18-29-year-olds using it.

Instagram Ads could be a great place to start experimenting if your affiliate marketing content is heavily visual and you’re trying to attract a younger demographic. You can create Instagram Ads with different goals in mind, such as increasing engagement or driving paid traffic.

Final Thoughts

Free traffic can only take you so far in affiliate marketing.

If publishers truly want to maximize the effectiveness of their affiliate campaigns, they should invest in paid traffic sources such as PPC, link and banner ads, social media ads, and native advertising. This will allow them to spread awareness, reach targeted audiences, and generate conversions more effectively.

It’s also critical to understand the pitfalls of purchasing affiliate marketing traffic. Rather than draining your budget, the right tools can assist you in avoiding scams and fraud and reaching only the most relevant, high-quality audiences.


I joined Wealthy Affiliate back in 2015 with no marketing experience whatsoever. In a couple of months, I got my own website running, driving traffic, and sales daily.

I am now self-employed and run my online affiliate business from the comfort of my home or wherever I want to.

Join now, and if you ever need help with anything, feel free to send me a message I’ll be there to guide you! So see you inside…  

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