All about Sportsbook affiliates
Welcome to the Internet, a place of free content and entertainment. Well, that’s what it seems like right. You don’t pay to watch youtube, read reviews, get livescores, post on your own wall and tweet whatever you like. The Internet is this amazing place where everything you want is free. How wrong you are.
If you are not paying for a product you use on the Internet… guess what.. YOU ARE THE PRODUCT.
Nothing is given away for free in this world (apart from the excellent writing produced on this website), and all those places you think are free are actually making a heap of money from you, it just doesn’t come directly from your pocket, so you don’t notice it.
Let’s take the two most popular sites. Google and Facebook. You pay zero to use these services and they add a heap of value to your life. But you might be surprised to know that by being on Facebook, you make them between $20 – $65 per year. If you use Google search, you make them about $12 per year.
These platforms make you the product. They then allow advertisers to target you with ads they feel you will click on. The advertisers pay Facebook and Google a fraction of a cent to a few bucks to show you an ad, and eventually, you buy a product which allows them to buy more and more ads. It’s one big circle of life, but as you do not directly pay for the platform, you believe it is free.
Every website on the Internet uses a few different ways to pay the bills. Most are like Facebook and use pay per click advertising, some use a subscription model and others use affiliates. Have you ever seen a book or product review that links to the product on Amazon? that is an affiliate link and if you clicked on that and bought anything from the store, the site made a percentage of what you spent.
These companies, like any media company, harvest your time and attention and transform it into revenue. There is nothing wrong with this model. It benefits every single person in the chain.
A Betting Site example
I’m sure many of you may have heard that the Punters.com.au site was recently sold to Newscorp. Punters is a media site for the Australian Horse racing market. It also generates almost all of it’s revenue from affiliate advertising. I can only guess, but assume it is the biggest affiliate in Australia.
According to data from Smartcompany, Punters generated $5.03 million in revenue in 2015. That’s a fantastic return and well deserved by Luc and his team. The selling price was a very high multiple of the yearly revenue. There was no other option to grow punters without affiliates. This allowed punters to hire staff, create content, products and a community that entertains and helps visitors interested in Horse racing. It also helps bookmakers and the horse racing industry make more money. Finally, it helps Luc and his team get paid for providing a service that people want. win, win, win.
There is a heap of other sites in the betting market that use affiliate marketing to make a huge profit and continue to create products and content that their users want.
Let’s have a very quick overview of how Sportsbook affiliates work. In future articles, I will go into much more detail (negative carryover, product fees, so on), but for now, I will present the basics.
- Visitor comes to a site and notices a link or banner ad for a bookmaker
- Clicks on link and signs up to the bookmaker
- Customer is linked to the initial website as an affiliated player
- At the end of each month, the affiliate is paid 25-45% of profits the bookmaker made from all affiliated players.
If you have ever clicked on a link to a bookmaker and signed up, there is a high chance you have clicked an affiliate link.
How much have I made with Affiliates?
We can use me as an example of how affiliates work. I have on rare occasions posted one off affiliate links. The most popular was when I created a great deal for my readers with madbookie. My readers got an amazing sign up bonus, madbookie was a new company so got a huge influx of new customers and I had the potential to make some profit over the long term.
This offer saw 434 of my readers sign up to Madbookie and take up the signup offer. This cost the bookmaker over $500,000 in “marketing costs” and as my readers are knowledgeable punters most of them would have made a nice profit. It was my job to let people know about madbookie and get them to sign up. It was their job to keep users happy and continue to bet with them.
This affiliate deal is now well over a year old and many members continue to bet with madbookie. I won’t go into the details, but as the upfront costs were huge for the bookmaker, they really had no chance of recouping their losses. To their credit, after a year they wiped the losses and any profit they make from my affiliated players each month is split with me 75/25 (but after product fees, GST, so on) it is closer to 85/15.
There have only been a few months where my affiliated players lost money. One of those months was September, where they lost a combined $14,500.00. This meant after all fees were taken out, I was paid $2,100.00. I can expect about $5,000 a year from this one affiliate which is not bad for an article that took me about an hour to write.
You can imagine the potential profits for a site like this if I created articles for every bookmaker. But sportsbook affiliates are not the only way I have made money from this site.
Recently I wrote an article asking why there were not more betting blogs. This article took me 2 hours to write and showed readers how to get their own blogs set up in a matter of minutes. Every time a reader did this I was paid $120 USD. So far there have been 13 people click that link and create their own blog. That’s $1,560 USD for 2 hours work with the potential for more as new readers come to the site. Affiliates can be a very lucrative business.
But as mentioned above, it was a win/win/win. Readers now have a blog where they will share their thoughts, and hopefully improve their betting. Bluehost has some new customers and I have some money which can be reinvested into the blog.
Affiliate marketing has a bad reputation because there are many affiliate sites and just as many affiliate programs that are dodgy. These sites and programs have one goal, to make as much money from as many people as possible. They do not care about anything else and will lie, cheat and scam to do so.
In the betting world, we have tens of thousands of twitter and facebook “tipsters” who are there solely to get losing punters to sign up via their affiliate links. My pet hate is tipster services which not only charge members for their tips but also bombard their members who have already paid them with affiliate links. I advise everyone to stay away from these rogue tipsters as they have only their own financial interests in mind.
Have you ever seen a negative bookmaker review? Apart from on this site where I continually bash the aussie books, I bet you haven’t. Do you know why that is? It’s because these reviews are not impartial. The person writing them wants you to sign up to the bookmaker and the bookmaker affiliate program will close their account unless they say nothing but nice things about them.
When Crownbet started, I thought it would be a great time to become an affiliate of theirs, so I filled in the sign up form. The affiliate manager got back to me and said they would only allow me to become an affiliate if I deleted every single negative comment about them and their old site (betezy) from this blog. You will never see a Crownbet ad on this site.
But there are also just as many small sites that offer great free tips and content who use affiliates to help pay for the time they spend on their business. I see nothing wrong with these guys posting affiliate links.
My Affiliate goals
I love a new challenge and perform best when I have a goal in mind. You may have noticed that this site has been very quiet this year. That’s because I have been working 24/7 on a project for punters that I think will help you much more than the occasional article. To keep the new site free (mostly) we will be dependent on affiliates to help pay for the continued development of it. So I need to start learning as much as I can about them (and sharing that with you). The best way to do that is to start with this site.
So I have an affiliate goal for the end of 2017. I hope to be generating $4,000 in recurring revenue from affiliates by December of 2017. That will mean from 2018 this site should generate $48,000 in revenue from affiliates.
I’ll post a monthly update and show you what I am doing to grow the affiliate side of the business. I’ll also share articles on the affiliate industry and talk about dodgy affiliates. There is barely any information out there about sportsbook affiliates and I hope to change that.
How could you Steve, bookies are evil and only let on losers
Correct. Australian bookmakers will ban or limit winning punters. It is something I have come to accept. It is the way things are at the moment. That does not mean they will always be that way, but for the foreseeable future, if you are a profitable punter you will have a hard time betting. One of the beauties of affiliates for the website owners is that bookmakers do all the work for you. An affiliate might send winning punters, but they will quickly limit them and only have losing punters allowed to bet, meaning they make more profit and the affiliate makes more profit.
Even though you and I know this, we both have accounts at all these bookmakers. Wouldn’t it make you feel a little better to know that some of the bookies profit is going to others?
There are a number of affiliates I will not work with and I am sure a number that will not wish to work with me. Crownbet and Sportsbet being two you will never see advertised on this site (articles on why will be posted soon).
If you have a problem with this site which has been mostly free of affiliates for 6 years moving to an affiliate model you have a number of choices.
- bitch and moan on social media (i.e scream into a vacuum)
- stop coming to the site
- install an ad blocker
- don’t click on affiliate links
I’m positive the ones in point 1 will continue to visit the site more than anyone else. For those who do stick around, I promise more free content that should be at worst entertaining and at best informative. I look forward to sharing a heap more about my betting, my financial goals, my life and our new website in the new year.