Can You Still do Affiliate Marketing With Google Ads?

While the ways to do affiliate marketing with Google Adwords (ads) has become more limited, it is still possible to make good money through it and I’ll show you how.

can you still do affiliate marketing with google ads

Let me just say that the following ways to try and do traditional affiliate marketing (AM) with Google Ads (Adwords) is either very risky or pretty much dead and if you try these methods out, there’s a good chance your campaign may be disapproved or your account may be shut down:

  • Linking to a page which contains affiliate links.
  • Linking to a direct AM offer page.
  • Linking to a page which has an opt in form.
  • Linking to any sort of one page site.
  • Even linking to pages which contain internal links to another post which then contains affiliate links.

Any of these 5 traditional options are not recommended anymore. Your page will LIKELY be considered a bridge page doing these things and that itself is what will cause the disapproval or shut down to happen.

Having tried all of these methods with Google Ads over the years and having my account shut down, twice, I had to stop trying to use this network, during which, I relied a lot on Bing Ads and SEO.

In fact, if you want to see proof that traditional AM is dead with Google Ads, simply do this:

  • Look up any popular Clickbank product on Google.
  • Look up ANY popular topic like P90X, losing weight and other topics which would at one point years ago bring up a large number of ads.

They just aren’t popping up anymore. And this is because Google has really changed how it allows ads to run, and most of the time these days, the big money to be made with this network is through advertising a business or helping a business advertise there. 

But back to the point, what about affiliate marketing?

I did say you can still do it, but I haven’t really specified WHAT exactly still works and with all the things I’ve said that don’t work anymore, it’s hard to believe it’s still possible, but it is. 

I was able to thankfully reinstate my adwords account a few months ago and before I reveal the AM method that still works, I want to say that if you are reading this and your account was shut down, call them up and try to reinstate it. You may be surprised (as I was) that they will actually do it.

But anyway, once I was able to give this network a third try, I was VERY careful not to try and run campaigns that fit into the 5 categories above and after experimenting around, I had found that one method still works and here it is:

Affiliate marketing still works, but much more now through YouTube ads:

YouTube Ads is part of the Google Adwords (GA) network and I’ve been able to run multiple campaigns where I simply take a YouTube video I create, promote it through the Adwords network and drive traffic there.

The AM part comes into the picture in that the videos I make have have affiliate links in the description. That’s how I do it. But here’s the specific formula:

affiliate marketing with google adwords

But I’ve also noticed some popular marketers, including people like Sam Ovens and Billy Gene use this network too, to create their own videos and link them to a webinar or even an opt in page created by Clickfunnels and they seem to “get away with it”. If so many popular marketers are using YouTube ads, clearly there’s a reason: It still works.

And for affiliate marketing, I can tell you that it 100% works.

The only real struggle if you’re new, is to actually create the video and properly promote whatever you are trying to promote in the description, then to set up the ad so it properly attracts the right audience. 

I will be putting up a more thorough YouTube Ads tutorial soon, but even without YouTube ads, you can still organically make a lot of sales by making YouTube videos if you follow this YouTube formula.

The way that formula works is that you only really focus on creating videos that review popular topics and popular products and promote them in the description of the videos. And if that goes well, then the next step is to increase the traffic to the video by promoting the video to the same audience.

One thing I always talk about is how important laser targeted traffic is to paid advertising success. This means that if I create a YouTube video that promotes a specific product, I only want people who are looking for that product to find my video and NO ONE else. Anyone else who does is likely not going to be a buyer, so if I can get that right laser targeted traffic to the video, I can then set up a YouTube ad to only target that same audience.

I will say that when I create YouTube videos, that I ONLY promote them for specific keywords that my laser targeted audience would type. So as an example, in the formula link I gave above, it provides a case study where I promoted a backpack with a specific name. Well if I were to use YouTube ads to drive traffic to that video, I would only use keywords that are literally the name of that bag to get the right people to view it.

Now YouTube ads can go beyond affiliate marketing:

And like I said, there’s many marketers using MAINLY this network to drive the majority of business to their sites and sales funnels but this article’s purpose was to only center around affiliate marketing and doing it through Google Ads, which like I said can safely be done with YouTube ads.

If you are a beginner affiliate marketer, I will advise against doing YouTube ads or any paid advertising until you learn how to organically get targeted traffic to a blog or YouTube video in general, then from that understanding, scale to paid networks:

And if for whatever reason you are unable to reinstate your account with Google, here’s 7 other alternatives to it.

Update: Google Ads has become more lenient with affiliate marketing as of late:

In 2019, I have noticed many more affiliate ads showing on Google’s search. This shows me that they have loosened up their policies for those seeking to do AM.

It is still an ad network I would be very careful with if you decide to try it out, but do not neglect the 7 alternative places I mentioned above which will be great places to get possibly more traffic than Adwords itself if you use it properly!

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