By now, you should know how to use affiliate links in your content.

But simply using affiliate links in your content is not enough to be successful. If you really want to start making money as an affiliate marketer, you need to actually make sales.

That’s why we’re talking all about click-through and conversion rates in today’s post. By the end, you’ll know what they are and how to use that knowledge to make passive income as an affiliate marketer.

Want to know more about being a successful affiliate marketer? Keep reading and I’ll sho you how.

What are Click Through and Conversion Rates?

When it comes to making online sales, CTR and conversion rates are two terms that are vital to your success.

Click Through Rate

Click through rate (CTR) is a way to track how many people are actually clicking on your affiliate link.

Usually, the affiliate you work with will provide these numbers for you. Even if they don’t, you can actually calculate this number yourself.

You only need two numbers to calculate CTR:

  1. the number of impressions your content has made AKA the number of people who’ve viewed your post
  2. the number of people who clicked your affiliate link

Once you have these two numbers, divide 2 by 1 or the number of people who clicked your link over the number of people who viewed the post. If you want this rate as a percentage, simply multiple by 100%.

CTR is an excellent way to identify what content is working and what isn’t. We’ll talk more about this in a bit.

Conversion Rate

While CTR defines the rate at which people actually click your affiliate link, conversion rate is the rate at which people make a purchase from your affiliate link.

Conversion rates are also calculated by your affiliate program. But you can again calculate this number yourself.

To calculate conversion rate, you need:

  1. the number of impressions your content has made
  2. the number of sales you make from that post

Again, divide 2 by 1 or the number of sales your made from a single post over the number of impressions that post has made. Multiple by 100% to see this number as a percentage.

Note that conversion rate will always be smaller than CTR. If it’s not, you may need to do a quick recalculation.

The bottom line? Conversion rates show you how good of a job your content is doing at marketing your product.

How to Improve CTR and Conversions

One of the most important aspects of a good CTR and conversion rate is knowing your audience. But if you’ve been following this series, you should already know your niche inside and out.

Good conversion rates and CTR are also influenced by how good your content is. But you already know all about writing engaging content.

Another vital point is to make sure your content is visible. But you should already know all about using SEO in your content and in your copywriting.

Finally, sales come from people who trust your opinion. But you already know all about building trust as an affiliate marketer.

With this series, I’ve given you all the tools you need to set yourself up for success with your audience. *Here are the last few things you need to assure a passive income-making affiliate blog. *

1. Define Your Goal

After all, how will you know your rates are improving if you don’t set a goal?

But there is a right and wrong way to make goals.

Like all marketing efforts, defining a specific and measurable goal is vital to your success as an affiliate marketer.

Goals should be specific

Don’t set a goal saying you “want to make a lot of conversions in 2019.” Make this goal more specific: I want to convert 5 sales in my first month and increase this twofold every month after that.

Goals should be measurable

A bad goal would be one with no time limit or one that is impossible to quatify. The example above is a measurable goal because of the time limit “in my first month.” It’s also easy to quantify since you only need to count the number of conversions you made that month.

Here are some more examples of measurable and specific goals:

  • I want to increase traffic to my affiliate posts by 50% before the end of the year
  • I want to improve CTR by 2 clicks per affiliate post before the end of the quarter
  • I want to make $500 in affiliate sales in 2019

If you don’t meet your specific and measurable goals then it’s time to test some new strategies.

2. Test New Strategies

The beginning of your affiliate marketing journey should be paved with a lot of trial and error.

Ever heard of A/B testing? It’s a tried and true method for figuring out what strategies are working and which ones are failing.

The specific A/B test you run will depend on what exactly you’re testing for. But here are a few examples of things you might test for to help improve CTR and conversions.


Is your CTA strong enough? If not, that may be why you have a poor CTR and/or conversion rate.

To A/B test your call-to-action, try using a different call to action in every other affiliate blog you post. After a few months, take a look at your analytics and see which CTA seems to drive more click throughs or conversion.

If the winning CTA starts to lag a few months down the road, start a new A/B test with a different CTA strategy.

Post Style

When you’re starting out, write affiliate posts in different styles. Try out ultimate guides, reviews, and product testing videos and see which format drives better conversions.

If you notice that your ultimate guide-type affiliate posts are doing better than your affiliate reviews, you may want to focus your efforts more on the former.

A thing to note here is that A/B tests don’t have to include just 2 test options. A smaller number of candidates makes it easier (and quicker) for you to track and see results, but that doesn’t mean you have to limit yourself to only 2 post styles per test run.


The title is the first thing your audience reads before even clicking on your post. If an affiliate post is performing poorly, it may just be because you haven’t captured your audience’s attention with your headline.

Try out different title templates like the ones I showed you in Post #14 of this series.

One thing to note about A/B tests is that you won’t see significant (AKA useful) results unless you run these tests for a good amount of time. You can calculate how long you should run the test for with this equation:

Test time = sample size / number of people who visited test post A or B

A/B testing can get extremely complicated when you’re doing it right. Start simple and add more components to you A/B testing as you get the hang of the method.

Still not seeing improvements in your conversions? You may not be showing your readers the value of your affiliate product.

3. Show the Value

An expert salesman once told me: People who object to a product’s price often aren’t objecting to price at all. You just haven’t shown them the value yet.

This small point can make big waves for your as an affiliate marketer.

When you’re marketing an affiliate product, don’t tell your audience why they should want to buy it. Instead, show your readers the value of the product you’re marketing so they feel like they need it.

There are two good ways to do this (But, like any good affiliate marketer, you should test out different methods to see what works for your unique audience):

Address readers’ objections

Don’t ignore the negatives or the downsides to the product. Let your audience know that you see those downsides BUT give them reasons that those things don’t matter.

Appeal to readers’ desires

You can do this by framing a product as capable of cutting down on your audiences’ time and troubles. People want efficient products that won’t waste their valuable time. They want easy products that reduce their daily troubles.

Speak to these two desires and you’ll have no trouble showing readers the value of the affiliate product you’re marketing. And you’ll be on your way to making passive income in no time.

Next Week…

You’re almost there, writers! Only one more post in this series and you’ll officially be ready to start making passive income off your affiliate blog.

Next week, we’re talking about expectations. Specifically, what yours should be as a brand new affiliate marketer.

Until then, happy writing!

Do you already have an affiliate blog? Need a high-quality affiliate post to start making passive income off of? Get in touch to learn more about my freelance writing services.

Want More?

How to be a Freelance Writer for Beginners

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1 Comment on “Series Post #18: What are CTR and Conversion Rates Plus How to Improve Them

  1. Pingback: Series Post #19: What Should You Expectations be as a Beginner Affiliate Marketer? – Haley Clark | Freelance Writer

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