Being an affiliate marketer in the iGaming industry can be incredibly rewarding, both financially and in the context of career development. However, there is a widespread misconception that all it takes to succeed in this department is setting up a website and waiting for those commissions to arrive. Marketing gurus and self-proclaimed affiliate experts have certainly contributed to this myth, given the fact they often promote the industry as a low-effort way of earning great passive income.
The truth is, if you want to bank above-mediocre figures, you have to invest your time and energy into educating yourself about the best iGaming affiliate marketing practices. Conversion rate optimization is one of the crucial ones.
What is Conversion Rate Optimization
Working as an affiliate marketer in iGaming, your ultimate goal is to trigger a desired action, i.e. to bring players to your partner’s website and earn commissions. This means your success depends not only on the amount of traffic you manage to attract to your website, but on whether or not this traffic actually converts.
If you think about conversion rate optimization the right way, you will see it goes beyond effectively positioning call-to-actions or improving click-through-rates with clever copywriting.
Conversion rate optimization implies a set of strategic activities – testing and trying out different approaches, and measuring results. So, it is a systematic process of increasing the percentage of website visitors who take the desired action. Optimizing your conversion rates comes down to being agile, pinpointing possible reasons why your visitors aren’t converting, and fine tuning everything you do in order to get bigger ROI of your affiliate efforts.
In a competitive industry such as iGaming, the continuous quality of CRO practices is what sets small fish from the big. But, how exactly do you do that?
Think About User Experience
The first thing you need to take in mind is the quality of user experience your website provides. This covers a variety of different elements, from the value you offer through your content and the way you format it, to the visual components (e.g. typography and overall aesthetics) and how intuitive and pleasant it is for users to navigate through your website.
If your website is poorly designed, it’s likely to be perceived as cheap and not trustworthy, or even spammy. Either way, your visitors might bounce off, which means you’ll lose conversions.
Here are the key things you should analyze in order to see whether or not your UX could be better:
In order to increase your page loading speed, you should definitely choose a reliable hosting service that can support the amount of traffic your website gets. Newbie iGaming affiliates usually opt for the cheapest option as they don’t want to invest a lot of money in something that doesn’t have tangible value for them at the beginning of their “side hustle”. This is fine if you’re just getting started, but as you develop your business – you’re going to need a solid server to process all those demands.
When it comes to crafting perfect call-to-actions, you have to take in mind the following: color and design of the CTA (shape, size, type), its placement, and of course – the copy it will contain. You might be surprised to see just how important it is to put the CTA at the right place.
In the UX, there is something called “the fold”, which is basically a border between what users see at one moment and what they will see next when they scroll. Studies have shown that the content above the fold is seen 84% more than the one below the fold, which may motivate you to rethink your CTA placement. In order to truly optimize your conversions, you have to think about shortening the path between users and the desired action you want them to take. Make CTAs logical and easily visible.
Website structure and website readability
If you want to nail your UX, you have to make it crystal clear to your online visitors what they need to do and how they can explore your website. This is done with decluttering your homepage and getting rid of friction in navigation. Think about what you want to achieve with your website. If you include a link to your partner’s online gambling service, then you shouldn’t confuse your site visitors with bunch of other links as this might be risky. They might navigate to some other page and thus – you lose commissions.
In terms of readability, think about creating consumable text bodies and formatting your content so that it is skimmable and easy to read. Bullet points can help here, as well as creating good spacing and new paragraphs after a maximum of 4-5 sentences. Incorporate visuals to increase dwell time and optimize user experience.
Focus on mobile
In addition to all of the above mentioned, you also need to ensure your website works properly on both desktop and mobile devices. SEO-wise, it’s good to mention that mobile engagement has outperformed desktop, which is why Google rolled out the mobile-first index. It’s perfectly logical when you think about it: user behavior has changed in the fast-paced world and we all rely on smartphones now. We consume content on the go, but we also shop and entertain ourselves via mobile devices.
Optimizing for mobile search is not that difficult. You have to think about resizing and compressing images so that they look good on mobile devices. Using flash is not recommendable (HTML or Java 5 is far better) and you need to get rid of full-screen pop ups as they disrupt the mobile experience. Basically, your website should be “finger-friendly”, designed for scrolling on smaller screens, with a lot less clutter.
Think about video and content variety
Turns out persuasive copy in form of a video can help you significantly improve your conversion rates, which is why you should definitely think about incorporating this format in your content marketing strategy, or even placing one on your home page. Believe it or not, doing the latter can help you increase conversions by 80%!
The thing is, competition in iGaming affiliate business is harsh. You are trying to make money side by side with many who target the same lead sources as you do, run similar ads, and refer to the online gambling services. If you choose to go an extra mile and go beyond just producing mediocre articles, you can differentiate yourself from others and give your visitors a reason to choose you as a trustworthy link towards iGaming, not someone else. By offering incentives and valuable content in eye-catching forms such as interviews and infographics, you are actually setting the foundation for achieving better conversions.
A/B Testing Help You Pinpoint What Works
Affiliates in the iGaming industry have a lot of things that are out of their control as they are the responsibility of their partner. For instance, affiliate marketers cannot influence the quality of the iGaming service they promote, nor do they play a role in the way this business is developed. They have no say in their partner’s policies and rules or the way they treat players. Of course, this is why wise aspiring affiliates always go for tested programs with proven and clearly defined earnings per clicks.
But, that’s a whole different topic.
The point is, if you want to strive and reach the top, you have to focus on the things you can control, such as your ads, your landing pages, your website, and your wholesome strategy for attracting intelligent traffic.
This is where A/B testing (or split testing) can help. This practice implies testing two different versions of a certain website or ad element, in order to identify which one resonates better with your audience and is better at inducing conversions. Usually, different types of headlines, color combinations, pop ups, and wholesome landing pages get tested randomly or within predefined segments. Then, the results are measured to see which one works better.
In order to do A/B testing, you need two things:
A software that will serve two different versions to users who visit your site
A tool that will help you analyze the results of testing in order to make a data-driven decision on what to do next
Google Analytics offers a free way to do a split test, although it is a bit different than standard A/B testing. It is called Content Experimentation and it enables you to test up to 10 different single pages simultaneously. Each of the pages get delivered to visitors from separate URLs so you can track results hassle-free.
As for analyzing your results, to start with – you can find some free split testing checker tool that will help you take a closer look of what works and what could be improved.
Done systematically, A/B testing can actually be fun and incredibly useful for your iGaming affiliate career. This is how you perfect your business sense, get to know you audience better, and slowly work your way towards earning significant revenue.
Over to You
As you hopefully learned from this article, conversion rate optimization is of fundamental importance for iGaming affiliates. In case you are “doing fine” in this business and feel like “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” mantra makes so much sense and that you cannot be bothered by changing your current approach – you risk falling behind.
This should not frighten you, but merely stand as a reminder that the industry is competitive, but also highly lucrative. Going an extra mile to optimize your marketing practices counts. The sweet spot is usually somewhere between commiting to a stable, yet a bit dull approach, and constantly trying new things, without actually testing your hypothesis for long enough in order to see whether or not it works.