Using AdWords To Get Traffic & To Make Money Online

As many may know, I am both a Google AdSense publisher and a Google AdWords advertiser. There are way more discussions about AdSense than AdWords because one makes you money while the other cost you money. I’ve been using AdWords to send traffic to this blog by purchasing Google SiteMatch ads on other blogs that I feel are a good match for what I offer.

The problem with a SiteMatch campaign is there’s not way to measure the effectiveness. You know how many people click on the ad and come to your site but you don’t know if you’ve made any money off them or if they will stick around. Some say this is just part of the cost of doing business, that if you want to make money online, you sometimes need to spend money online. I don’t have a problem with spending money online. However, I would like to recover the advertising cost whenever possible.

Recovering AdWords Cost With Affiliate Sales

Most affiliate marketers use Google AdWords to send traffic to their affiliate landing page in the hopes that the visitor would buy whatever it is they’re offering. If the AdWord cost is less than the profit from the sales, then you got yourself a winner. If the ads cost more than sale, you need to keep tweaking or you’ll have a loser on your hands.

I’ve decided to expand on this concept. The page I used isn’t really a true affiliate landing page in any sense of the word. I’m using AdWords to send traffic to my review of Affiliate Outline. There’s enough links in that post to lead visitors to explore other parts of the blog. In addition, the review does a fairly good presell of the Affiliate Outline eBook.

The object of the exercise is to send traffic to the post with AdWords to gain new readers and sell enough eBooks to recover the advertising cost. The problem with most affiliate landing page is it’s only one page and most people (up 99%) will not buy your offer and leave. However, by sending the traffic to a blog that offers way more than just trying sell an eBook, I’m hoping some of those 99% who won’t buy will explore the blog and become readers. Since they came to the blog by clicking on a Google ad on how to make money online, there’s a good chance they’ll stick around.

The Results So Far


These are really early stats (just two days) so please don’t draw any conclusion from them. Using Google AdWords, I sent 796 visitors to the Affiliate Outline review post. Those visitors cost me $62.09. Out of the 796 visitors, two purchased the Affiliate Outline eBook. This is what the numbers look like after two days.

  • eBook sales: $84.80
  • AdWords Cost: $62.09
  • Net Profit: $22.71

It looks like I have a winner on my hands but it’s really too early to tell. I will need another week or two of data before I can crank up the ad budget. Conversion is very low at 0.25% because the targeted post isn’t a true landing page. However, the stats are very encouraging.

Remember, the object is not to make money on eBook sales, it’s to gain new readers by finding a low to no cost way of using Google AdWords to send targeted traffic to the blog. AdWords sent 796 people to this blog in the past two days and instead of costing me money, I made at $22.71 on the deal. Looking at the above Analytics chart, I can see the 796 visitors viewed 871 page, so some of the visitors are checking out the blog. However, I would like to see the page view per unique at a higher ratio.

Most webmasters use Google AdWords to either make affiliate sales or send traffic to their site in the hopes of gaining new readers. This little trick allows you to do both. When you think about it, it’s pretty evil. No wonder I came up with it. 😈

80 thoughts on “Using AdWords To Get Traffic & To Make Money Online”

  1. Ronaldo says:

    I’m doing something similar with AdWords, only it’s redirecting to an Agloco landing page.

    Can’t tell if it’s a winner, since we still don’t have the numbers on Agloco payments, but there’s been some conversion.

    1. I might have to get into this πŸ‘Ώ

      1. Peter-Jan says:

        There is still a trade-off in it.

        I am curious how the figures will turn out in the long term.

        Good luck!

      2. Me too, there is so much to learn about ads!

        1. Bryce says:

          Hey, you’re at the right place to learn πŸ™‚

          1. No kidding, that’s the best thing about John’s site!

      3. First, I guess we have to work out on how to recover the cost from participating in this. You don’t wanna turn out losing money instead out of this!

        1. Dave says:

          That’s why you run a limited test for a week or two, and if you continue to make money you ramp up the budget as high as it will go so your earnings go up too πŸ™‚

    2. Ronaldo says:

      I think I’ll move the landing page to my blog, so I can get 2 for the price of one: blog visibility AND some Agloco referrals… πŸ™‚

    3. Yes, it’s an effective tactic. I use AdWords to send traffic to my Church of Jacin — Agloco Sign Up page. Because the page tells the reader that it is a way to support the blog, it interests them in checking out what the blog is about. A small portion subscribe and, wa-lah, new readers.

      It seems small at first but becomes very significant once the campaign is well under way. Today I just reached 11,000 clicks sent from AdWords.

    4. Jane May says:

      Hopefully Agloco will be as good as people say, if so then you’re on your way πŸ˜‰

      1. I don’t know, the more I read about it, the more it looks like a pyramid scheme…

        1. Jane May says:

          I’m fearing the same thing, but trying to stay hopeful πŸ™‚ But it’s not the end of the world if it doesn’t pan out.

          1. True but, in my case, I have limited time online, so I can’t focus on tech that might not pan out….

        2. …and John is almost at the tip of the pyramid.

          Mine never got any referral. It’s been 1 all along. :mrgreen:

        3. Who knows till they finally kick off? Haven’t seen any action by their side so far…

        4. Dave says:

          John believes in the model, and like he said, even though it failed last time, he still made a pile of money.

          He’s taking a calculated risk. Even if the new model fails, I’d be willing to wager that John and others with a network of his size will make a crapload of money before it does.

          1. There really isn’t much risk for John, there is nothing to loose but he has a lot to gain…

        5. KidBlogger says:

          yes, that’s true

      2. Up till now, it seems that no action has been seen on their side at all! Are they still alive while their recruiters are hard at work? ❓

        1. Jane May says:

          Very good question!

          1. Dave says:

            I’ve meant to get working on Agloco, but I just haven’t gotten around to it.

          2. At this point, it might be too late – so many people are pushing it…

  2. Real Estate says:

    Good post. And good idea to add Adds with pictures under post. Many peoples buy online clicking on this adds?

  3. Dave says:

    John, this is absolutely brilliant. I’m definitely going to lift this technique off you πŸ™‚

    So evil haha

    1. Jane May says:

      I’d do a little more research, or wait for a little more time for John to come back with some stats, before going head first. But this really does seem like a good opportunity to increase traffic and capitalize on affiliates.

  4. Excellent idea, John. I’ll have to give that a go. I’m currently testing a few adWords ideas I’ve got from a powerpoint presentation I found online somewhere. I’ll have to guest blog about them if they work out well and make me some dosh πŸ™‚

  5. Never tried Adwords, but I might have to start using it. πŸ™‚

    1. Jane May says:

      Make sure you have a strategy behind it as John does. This can be very effective.

  6. James says:

    This should work good. I think you have a good plan.
    What are you using to monitor the stats? Are those coming here and viewing other pages instead clicking on anything later that makes money?

  7. macgoo says:

    Great post John. Very helpful.

    I guess after seeing this table I should be happy that my visitors average 4 pageviews per visit!

    MotorsportBabesAU: Promo Bikini & Grid Girls from V8 Supercars, Clipsal 500 & Autosalon

    1. Gdog says:

      Nice site you got there… πŸ˜€

  8. Good stuff from John again … he didn’t even use the 50 cent word, arbitrage, which many quasi-sophisticated “het gurus” like to babble about. But this is arbitrage, pure, simple and intelligently done. If you want people to go to a certain page and do a certain thing on that page, make an ad that tells them to … some will … if enough do to cover your costs and make a profit … your making money.

    The only thing I have a perpetual problem with here … mebbe it’s just cause I’m old-fashioned … how is the pursuit of profit “evil”? I know, it’s sort of John’s tongue-in-cheek trademark and all but there are only two decent reasons to be on line and we don’t need instruction in time wasting … so making a profit is the other one.

    1. Dave says:

      This is arbitrage, but with an added bonus. Not only does he make more than he’s spending, but he gains more blog readers. Evil!

      The rich get richer.

      1. That’s only been the last few months though!

  9. Miriguy says:

    Sounds interesting. At least you’re earning money doin this. I was losing money the last time I attempted this…
    But, I will do it again, not now. But, soon.

  10. InvestMe says:

    interesting topic john, sometimes you’ve got a lot of effort to become a winner, losers might not think about it. thanks john for the info. your blog really my favorite place to hang out and gains a lot. πŸ™‚

  11. Senjaya Khoo says:

    Make Money Online – this keyword you got #7 today!
    Why you still using adword to campaign?

  12. Genius I say…Genius! πŸ‘Ώ Why don’t you promote your own SEO book and make even more profit!! Triple evil…or is the seo book you’re promoting really yours disguised as someone elses.. πŸ˜€

  13. I had good success with AdWords last year during the hurricane season. When a particular storm name would become headlines, I would jump on those keywords using AdWords and shoot them to a blog page on my blog. That page would have content covering that storm, but at the same times exposing the visitors to all my DVD collections. I seem to do fairly well making a nice amount of DVD sales over the cost of my AdWords clicks. I’ll likely try it again this summer.

    Great post John! πŸ™‚

  14. Jane May says:

    Yeah, increasing the page views per visitor is something that we’re working on also. We haven’t gone into adwords yet, but maybe a good option after we see your results with more data πŸ˜€

  15. derrich says:

    Interesting use of AdWords. I’m gonna give it a whirl.

    1. Jane May says:

      Just don’t get too dizzy! πŸ˜†

  16. Josh Rives says:

    I always think “AdWords keep costing me money” but i need to be thinking of trading that money for other money

    1. I guess one needs a viable method to convert those traffic to revenue. Just depending on those traffic to click on ads on your site wouldn’t work much.

  17. Jason says:

    I’m interested in seeing where this goes. I may have to file it away for future use πŸ˜‰

  18. Senjaya Khoo says:

    My Blog got #20 PR in google “Internet Marketing Secret” – but I don’t know why I can do that?
    Can you tell me why?

  19. >>> Investor says:

    very nice john……your a geek…your getting millions in a few years john…congrats bro.

  20. I’m doing a similar thing right now for one of my websites. I’m bidding on low cost keywords that are hard to rank for, but no one else is bidding on them. As such, hopefully these people will like what’s there and will stay. I don’t expect to make any money though affiliate sales via these visitors, but hopefully they stick around.

  21. uncle sha says:

    i’ve stopped using adwords since it cost more than what i earn in adsense. indeed adwords brings me the visitors but i’m losing $ at the moment … any advice?

    1. I disabled ads completely – for now…

    2. I guess if the only intended method is to direct traffic to your site to click on your adsense ads, that is going to be ineffective in conversions.

    3. Dave says:

      Trying sending the traffic to a page with a post about a product related to your blog that you can have an affiliate link to.

      Start with a limited adwords budget and after a few weeks see if you make more than you spend. If so, ramp up the budget.

      Experimentation is the key!

  22. simon says:

    I didn’t see you put AdSense Referral. Do you think Adsense referral is not easy to make money?

    Darren Rowse makes over $1,500 in two month! How much did you earn from AdSense referral.

    1. John Chow says:

      Zero. But it’s something I should look into.

      1. simon says:

        Ha~ So I finally beat JohnChow making money with AdSense………referral.
        If I can do it, john you can do it better. Your blog is many times as mine. And I guess you are able to earn that $2,000 bonus every year.

  23. I guess it is at a relativity low cost to generate some intended traffic to your site. But, the pages that visitors land on must have some catch in earning more than you are losing. I guess that’s the hard part that I am trying to learn as well.

  24. kirs says:

    Nice to see my comments :mrgreen:

  25. ian says:

    The other important thing to consider in the equation is the amount of people who ask for a refund with the 56 day moneyback guarantee.

  26. Mubin says:

    John, what tool are you using for tracking. It looks like analytics but I dont see those things in my analytics account.

    1. TDave says:

      It’s Analytics.

  27. Bret says:

    Great post. Always enjoy when someone shares the actual dollars and cents of how much money they are making online with various strategies. Gives us folks new to the game a good idea of what is possible — someday. Thanks.

    1. Dave says:

      Bret, this is a technique that anyone can try…not in the future…but TODAY. I have already worked out the affiliate product I’m going to try my blog with.

      If you have the “someday” attitude, you’ll never make money online!

      1. I agree. If you think you can do it now, why not now? Most people that usually put off doing something usually never do it, at all.

  28. Abdul Aziz says:

    Wow, this is a novel idea, killing two birds with one stone πŸ™‚

  29. John says:

    People have been using techniques like this for a long time now. Some will use adwords to send traffic to a Made For Adsense page in hopes of making money. There are also a lot of people that will use Yahoo Publisher Network and MSN Adcenter to buy cheaper clicks and send the traffic to an adsense arbi page. I have recently tried to use tier two search engines to drive really cheap traffic (about 3-5 cents a click) to one of my sites and have been experiencing decent results. The problem with teir two is that you cannot get anywhere near the traffic you will get from adsense and ypn, but it is so cheap. So cheap it may be considered evil

    1. Dave says:

      How many tier 2’s are out there? If you had enough of them, the lower traffic would probably ad up…

  30. Jason says:

    😈 Heh Wow. Visitors as well as money. Now, let’s see how it turns out in the long term. Well, you didn’t do any tweaking or something. Imagine how cool the earnings turn out if you apply some necessary tips. I’m just waiting to do that too.

  31. Brian Lee says:

    How did you get 796 visitors for $62.09? Isn’t there a $.25 minimum per click on site-targeted ads?

    1. John Chow says:

      That was not sitematch. Just normal Google AdWords.

      1. Brian Lee says:

        Wow, I thought it would cost much more than that. Thanks, John!

  32. That is some good news as far as the cost. I have to wait till I get some more solid content, maybe 5-6months before I try adwords.


  33. One thing to keep in mind with using ClickBank products is they have an 8-week return policy and it is abused quite a bit. If it is refunded during this time you won’t get paid.

    It looks like this particular product currently has a 14.22% return rate which is a bit on the high side and could cut affect the future ROI.

  34. Mosley says:

    πŸ‘Ώ just evil and smart.
    This is also a good way to track how your ads are working. Good one John!

    I think I might give this one a try.

  35. KidBlogger says:

    How much really do you bid john?! hehehe

  36. Mr. Red says:

    great concept, i have heard of people making a 100k a month by doing this, but you have to be smart and real careful

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