I’ve experience using ClickBank:
As a ClickBank customer/consumer : buying ClickBank products (many of them).
As a ClickBank affiliate : promoting ClickBank affiliate products.
And as a ClickBank publisher : selling a product on ClickBank.
I review all three uses of ClickBank below.
My first experience of ClickBank was as a customer/consumer, my eldest son (15 at the time: over 5 years ago) persuaded me to play World of Warcraft, we had a World of Warcraft account each and set about leveling our characters the hard way (didn’t have a clue how to level :-)).
My son found a World of Warcraft leveling guide ebook and we bought a copy, it was sold through Click Bank and didn’t have any problems buying the product or with the quality of what we bought. We got quite good at playing World of Warcraft, even joined a raiding guild and killed the end game bosses :-)
Note: There’s a LOT of crap sold through ClickBank (a lot more than you would get from say buying at Amazon.com), do your research like you should when buying any product and if you get caught out use ClickBank’s 60 day money back guarantee (within 60 days, don’t wait).
ClickBank Affiliate Review
As an Internet marketer who likes to make money online, promoting ClickBank affiliate products is a huge money making opportunity. Since my son and I were using a product sold on ClickBank which has an affiliate program on ALL products sold it made a lot of sense to promote that product as an affiliate.
Signed up for ClickBank: https://accounts.clickbank.com/public/#/signup/form/key//cid/MAINmenu, we both wrote ClickBank affiliate product reviews and because I’m an SEO expert we both quickly gained relevant Google traffic for that product and started to see ClickBank affiliate sales. Kerching!!!
My 15 year old son made ClickBank affiliate product sales before I did :-)
Within weeks we’d made significantly more from ClickBank affiliate sales than we paid for the product, can’t complain at free money.
As an affiliate the process is straight forward with no risks. Find a ClickBank product worth promoting and promote: this is the hard part, there’s a lot of rubbish sold on ClickBank, be vigilant and start with promoting my ClickBank product.
The link above will guide you through the basic process of building ClickBank affiliate links (HopLinks) etc… If you are new to promoting affiliate products and looking to make a lot of money promoting ClickBank affiliate products start with reviewing Stallion Responsive and when you understand the process look for other good products to review and promote. I only promote products I’ve used.
ClickBank Publisher Review
I started selling Stallion WordPress SEO Theme 6.0 through Click Bank early 2011, my product development is now at Stallion Responsive WordPress SEO Package V8.1 (a lot of development time).
I’ve tried selling V8 without an affiliate program, but it’s really hard to generate a lot of traffic that converts (I rely 100% on organic traffic). My product is in the WordPress, SEO, Make Money niches and I can generate the relevant traffic to the niche (that’s easy), but NOT traffic specifically looking to buy a WordPress SEO theme or WordPress SEO Package. I need affiliates to promote and pre-sell the SEO product I’ve developed: qualified visitors who are ready to buy.
Selling a product through ClickBank isn’t that difficult, but allow for their approval process it’s time consuming (or was in 2011 waiting for their responses). I wasted about a week because I had an offer (guarantee) on my sales page if anyone could find a better WordPress SEO theme than Stallion I’d send them $1,000 via PayPal: had to remove it from the sales page to get ClickBank approved!
When I put Stallion Responsive 8 on ClickBank (tried selling via PayPal only for the first half of 2014, low sales) I wanted the ClickBank price increased to $500 (it’s a huge SEO package now well worth the money) ClickBank wouldn’t increase above $200 without a test period at $200, so had to lower the price to $200 to keep it on ClickBank.
Since I have thousands of affiliates on ClickBank already (they were promoting Stallion WordPress SEO v7 still**) if I didn’t use ClickBank’s affiliate program I loose affiliates! I know there are other affiliate marketplaces, but ClickBank’s marketplace is well known in Internet marketing circles and is trusted by affiliates (I trust them): hard to rip your affiliates off since the ClickBank vendor (me) has no control over the money, ClickBank manages it all.
** Stallion v7 HopLinks now automatically go to Stallion Responsive v8, so nothing my Stallion affiliates have to do to benefit from their traffic. All that’s changed is rather than the HopLink counting for V7 it counts for V8.
In the niche I’m in my customers are tech savvy and tend to use their own ClickBank affiliate links (HopLinks) to buy the product for the generous affiliate discount. Basically Bob Smith who has a ClickBank account wants to buy Stallion Responsive, so they build a Stallion Responsive ClickBank HopLink using Bob Smith’s ClickBank username and buy via their affiliate link. As far as I’m aware there’s no dispute process for publishers to challenge affiliate sales like these (some are blatantly obvious: you’ll see the ClickBank username like ‘bobsmthaffil’ matches the customers order name Bob Smith).
As a ClickBank vendor we loose a % of revenue to this type of customer and I don’t think there’s anything we can do about it, so if you are in an Internet marketing niche like I am take this into account, it adds up overtime.
With a 60 day money-back guarantee, basically a customer can request a refund for no reason (doesn’t need a real reason) by contacting ClickBank and asking for a refund. When requesting a Click Bank refund doesn’t matter what your reason is, they always give a refund in my experience (though I’ve never tried to stop a customer refund request).
When you go to a ClickBank order form (Click my Buy Now button on the left menu) at the bottom you’ll see this:
ClickBank will allow for the return or replacement of any product within 60 days from the date of purchase. For more details see our return policy
Have to admit as a consumer when I first read the 60 day guarantee thought it sounded too good to be true, you see these types of refund guarantees a lot online, many are total bullshit.
Reasons Why a Purchase May Be Refunded
ClickBank has every incentive to keep customers happy by providing quality products and service. To promote customer satisfaction, ClickBank reserves the right to reverse a sale, including but not limited to the following:
If the customer provides a valid reason for requesting a return within the time frame permitted in the applicable Vendor Return Policy;
If the vendor of the product requests a return on the customer’s behalf within 90 days of purchase if our customer service team confirms there is a valid reason for the return;
If the customer provides a valid report that the charge was fraudulent or unauthorized;
In order to comply with credit card industry rules, ACH industry rules, PayPal terms of service, U.S. law, and requests from verified US judiciary or law enforcement agents; or
For any other reason ClickBank deems appropriate. https://accounts.clickbank.com/return_policy.html
As a customer have bought plenty of ClickBank products and have never requested a refund (never needed a refund), but have been on the other side of refunds as a ClickBank vendor and it is as ClickBank states, receive a refund in the first 60 days: “provides a valid reason for requesting a return” means ALWAYS in my experience.
Damn irritating as a publisher selling a downloadable product, had to add an activation system to Stallion so I could disable the WordPress SEO package I sell through ClickBank when a refund is requested (otherwise free product)!
If you want a ClickBank Refund go to the Clickbank Refund Page https://www.clkbank.com/clkbank.htm and add your order details.
I’ve not used the refund process, but it definitely works, even though I have a deactivation option with Stallion I still get people trying to get the ClicBank product for free: They order Stallion, get a Stallion Activation ID, get a ClickBank Refund and think they’ll have the SEO package for free, except I deactivate the Stallion Activation ID and the package reverts to Demo mode (which anyone can use for free anyway: see Download link on left sidebar).
As a ClickBank affiliate I’ll also see some of my affiliate sales refunded as well.
As I was writing this review I did some research of ClickBank refunds. Found one way a Clickbank vendor can ‘block’ a refund. When a refund is requested if the vendor keeps changing the support request from “Refund” to “Tech Support” ClickBank’s support staff won’t action the refund (takes a few days).
If you find the publisher is changing the support ticket from Refund to Tech Support without a good reason go to https://www.clkbank.com/clkbank.htm and use their Live Chat option at the bottom and complain to ClickBank.
On ClickBank chargebacks, I’ve been on the wrong end of these as well and they suck. I don’t know the exact process Clickbank goes through, but it doesn’t appear to involve ClickBank publishers. Fortunately only had a few chargebacks, but have not had an opportunity to argue the chargeback is unfounded, (with PayPal they have a dispute process) seems ClickBank gives chargebacks as a matter of course. Great for consumers, sucks for publishers as ClickBank charges us extra for chargebacks which is a WTF moment!
You should be getting a picture that EVERYTHING about Clickbank is keeping the customer happy at the expense of the vendor.