Advertisers are STUPID

Facepalm-Meme-04No, the title isn’t clickbait. I mean it. If you’re an offer owner, read on.. I still see this regularly.

Why do advertisers (offer owners) in our space, hire the cheapest of the cheap web-development teams to design their landing pages?

Are they wanting millions of dollars worth of paid traffic directed to your sales funnel or… just to annoy affiliates ?

The amount of awfully designed & resource-heavy landing pages i’ve come across is numerous, some get it right, and some get it really wrong.

How is the age-old concept of fast-loading pages so easily forgotten about?

We all know that the attention span of a user is pretty slim, if a page takes 1-2 secs or longer to load, your premature exit-rate goes up exponentially.

I’ve had a word advertisers directly and gave them all my suggestions in order to speed up page load times, as this is a true and tested metric for better performance, and the pages that actually do get worked on, typically perform better (less clickloss).

Here’s an example that I stumbled across today of an offer I was pointed to in order to run a test.

Not only is their page design absolutely dreadful, this was the page load-time (5.4 seconds) according to GT-metrix.

advertisers

A Basic Process

In 1 short workday, you could improve your landing pages significantly (just based on simple optimizations) and potentially boost conversion rates across the board.

It doesn’t even require that much work. There’s a lot more you could do, but realistically, you can get away with doing a handful of tweaks in the majority of cases.

First things first. Run your site through gt-metrix and attempt to solve any issues it lays out.

One advertiser hadn’t even had GZIP Compression enabled on his server, which is a pretty basic setting for most servers which enables on-the-fly compression of served up resources.

Compress Your Images

I can’t believe I actually have to point this one out. Compression means smaller file size, which correlates to faster load times.

So, open up photoshop, resize the images on your page to their correct dimensions, then once you’ve saved that, head over to this hidden gem: kraken.io and drag all your images over, have it compressed using their secret sauce algorithm (lossy compression works well), download the files via a zip file. Wallah!

Here’s one I prepared earlier.

2016-05-27 17_51_01-Free Online Image Optimizer · Kraken.io

Remove Unused Scripts and Stylesheets

If I had a penny for every landing page I found using bloated stylesheets, bloated frameworks, unused scripts, you name it, I’d be a Saudi Prince.

NOT EVERY PAGE NEEDS JQUERY.

That’s right. You can do most basic javascript without jQuery as the framework, so why load it up?

What about all those useless CSS files that don’t affect the page, but you’ve referenced anyway?

Do yourself a favour and have that page repurposed starting from scratch, using properly structured and more modern HTML5 / CSS.

Consider a CDN

Unless you live under a dusty rock on Mars, you should hopefully know what a CDN is by now.

If not, go get yourself an account somewhere that provides CDN services, such as MaxCDN and learn how to use it. A CDN basically just mirrors what you point it to (URL) and request via their cdn link. For example, if you store all your files on mystoragelocation.com, and the CDN url is cdn123.maxcdn.com, you would replace all references to website assets which are external to the page code (css/js/images) with the cdn url. You’ll want to ensure your reference corresponds to the correct directory on the server (for example /public_html/images), which would make http://mystoragelocation.com/images.

To load from the CDN (if you configured it right), you’d refernce this instead to load all your resources:

http://cdn123.maxcdn.com/images

What’s the benefit of this?

CDN’s are useful for hosting static files such as images, stylesheets, audio, etc.. and serving it up to your user from a node (server) closer to their physical-location. For example, I’m in Australia, if you hosted your files with MaxCDN, they’d most likely serve me all your CDN hosted files from a server in Sydney or Singapore. Much faster to load that then something sitting in the USA or Europe.

Talk To Your Hosting Company

Have a nice little sit down with your hosting company and figure out what optimizations you can do to the server in order to speed things up. For example, you can switch from Apache to NGINX or, if you’re so inclined, and are using cPanel, switch to Litespeed (extra monthly cost).

You could enable compression if it wasn’t already enabled. I’m no server guru but there are, I’m sure, numerous optimizations such as caching that can be made specific to the server environment you are using, in order to serve up pages as quickly as possible.

And lastly, here is an infographic courtesty of KISSmetrics.com on the matter (Click image for larger version).

loading-time-lrg

– Andrew, aka Andy D


If you’re looking for further Affiliate Marketing Guidance, check out StackThatMoney. Best community of experienced marketers from around the globe, exclusive meetups, follow along’s, tutorials and the knowledge of a thousand sun-gods.

Can’t Decide on Tracking Software?

I’ve recently switched over to a new tracking platform called Thrive by the guys over at iPyxel which I love. It’s still in development, but is constantly improving and making strides, and the best part about it is it can be self-hosted. The offer a 30-day trial and it’s $99 a month thereafter which is well worth the investment.


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Optimize You CPVLab Pt.2

Hi Guys,

Yes, it’s been a while, I’ve been moving around a lot, and frankly haven’t been all too inspired to post anything lately. I have a lot I can share with the AM community, but since it’s full of blood-thirsty money-hungry dishonesty, I gotta be careful and keep some goodies to myself.

Enough of the B/S – Here I provide you with some tips to keep your CPVLab DB running a little smoother.

First thing you will need is SSH access on your server. Don’t know what that is? Then this is probably too advanced for you. However, if you’re on a managed server, I’m sure your hosting company can have a techie help you out with this one.

After digging around I found some recommendations and these settings seem to have improved performance for me. You’ll want to pay attention and ensure that these settings are ideal for YOUR server, as every server is different, especially given the different RAM allocation. My *new* server that I am currently moving to has 5gb of RAM allocated so my innodb_buffer_pool_size is equal to 2gb (or 2048M).

Tweaking InnoDB Settings

These are just the settings I’ve discovered so far to help speed things up. Feel free to add your findings in the comments.

Firstly, you’ll need to edit the following file on your server: “/etc/my.cnf”

Once logged in via SSH:

  • Type “edit /etc/my.cnf”
  • Add or Change the following settings (Just be aware, these are settings that I USED for my server. Speak with your hosting company if unsure on which settings to use or do some of your own research. Typically, the one you should be most concerned with is innodb_buffer_pool_size
[mysqld]
thread_cache_size=16K
table_cache=128M
local-infile=0
innodb_file_per_table=1
max_connections=100
key_buffer_size=16M
join_buffer_size=1M
query_cache_type=1
query_cache_limit=4M
query_cache_size=128M
max_tmp_tables=1
default-storage-engine=MyISAM
innodb_buffer_pool_size=2048M
innodb_flush_method=O_DIRECT
low_priority_updates=1
concurrent_insert=ALWAYS
tmp_table_size=128M
max_heap_table_size=128M
  • Restart MySQL
  • /etc/rc.d/init.d/mysql restart

 

Automate Defragmentation via Cron & Bash

This next step is going to automate defragmenting your tables which can help speed things up also.

Firstly, you’ll need to create a new “bash” script on your server to be run via Cron later.
Lets name this file “dbdefrag.sh”

Type: “edit dbdfrag.sh”and paste the following code, modifying the user/pass for your DB accordingly.

#!/bin/bash

MYSQL_LOGIN='-u USERNAME  --password=PASSWORD'

for db in $(echo "SHOW DATABASES;" | mysql $MYSQL_LOGIN | grep -v -e "Database"$
do
        TABLES=$(echo "USE $db; SHOW TABLES;" | mysql $MYSQL_LOGIN |  grep -v T$
        echo "Switching to database $db"
        for table in $TABLES
        do
                echo -n " * Optimizing table $table ... "
                echo "USE $db; ALTER TABLE $table ENGINE=INNODB" | mysql $MYSQL$
                echo "done."
        done
done

 

The next step is scheduling with cron.

Steps:

  • crontab -e
  • Go to the end of the file and add the following line (note it runs at 4am every day)
  • 0 4 * * * bash dbdefrag.sh
  • CTRL+X to exit then hit Y to save
  • Alternatively, you can set up a cron job via cPanel

 

Disclaimer

Please consult your server admin before making any of these changes to yours. I take no responsibility if you mess your server up. Perhaps do these changes on an experimental install or server first before making the changes to your live one.


If you’re looking for further Affiliate Marketing Guidance, check out StackThatMoney. Best community of experienced marketers from around the globe, exclusive meetups, follow along’s, tutorials and the knowledge of a thousand sun-gods.

-=-=-=-

Can’t Decide on Tracking Software?

I’ve recently switched over to a new tracking platform called Thrive by the guys over at iPyxel which I love. It’s still in development, but is constantly improving and making strides, and the best part about it can be self-hosted. The offer a 30-day trial and it’s $99 a month thereafter which is well worth the investment.

Those on a smaller budget can still opt to go the CPVLab route, another favorite of mine but a little more outdated. It is, however, more suitable for PPV traffic if that’s your traffic of choice.


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