Desktop vs mobile traffic in Affiliate Marketing, which one is better to work with? This is a very popular question for newbie affiliates who are searching for the best area to start. To tell the truth, it's not so easy to give the exact answer. There are always some pros and cons on both sides. So, it would be great to look through all possible advantages and disadvantages and then make your own decision.
First, you should understand what you're working with. The desktop sector includes users that search the web using desktop computers and laptops. Mobile traffic is usually defined as the one from smartphones, feature phones and tablets, which is not 100% correct actually. That's because tablets show themselves as some middle area between mobile and desktop in terms of conversion.
Desktop or mobile traffic, which one is better in Affiliate Marketing
Having your own website means you don't need to choose which one is better. You just have to optimize the pages for all the 3 sectors (considering tablets as the 3rd). In other case you'll just lose a lot of visitors. If something has displayed wrong on their screen, users in most cases just leave the site and may never visit it again.
The other important thing is responsiveness. Make sure the site loads fast enough and it is comfortable to use. Spend your time on this without any doubts, cause it the best way not to lose many potential customers and to increase the conversion rate in Affiliate Programs.
How to choose if you pay for your traffic? In this situation you don’t have to guess whether Desktop vs mobile traffic in Affiliate Marketing you’ll receive. Any available network gives a choice for you what users you want: desktop, tablet, smartphone etc. In such situation the question which sector is better appears. Before you make a decision, it would be a good idea to mention all the pros and cons.
When the desktop segment rules?
- Mobile traffic is strongly influenced by the connection speed. When the users are browsing on smartphone, they’ll immediately close the page if it doesn’t load in seconds or less. The desktop one is not so sensitive, so you can run the campaigns on a rather cheap host. At the same time, if you do this with mobile, you’ll lose tons of clicks.
- No one likes to type on mobile devices. There are dozens of virtual keyboards, but it’s hard to say there is at least one that you’ll choose to type a big piece of text. How does it influence on your campaigns? Well, if the conversion requires a rather long registration from the visitors, they might just leave the process cause they’re lazy.
This phenomenon is the most harmful for e-commerce in Affiliate Networks. When the visitors want to purchase something, they usually have to type long address and other details. Moreover, most of them will better do it on desktop, because they don’t want to make a mistake and then have problems with shipping. The whole situation is somehow better with tablets. They have a rather big screen to be comfortable for typing.
- If we talk about demographics, desktops are much more popular among older people. The ones who are over 50 are commonly not used to do any purchases with their smartphones It’s uncomfortable for them because of the small screen and because they are not accustomed to using such devices so widely. On the other hand, in desktop segment there are verticals where you can make profit on such audience. It might be for example dating vertical.
- Mobile devices are usually used for some random search, playing online games, videos, music etc. In general, people are relaxed doing this. It’s their free time and they don’t want to waste it for something that requires any actions. This is the model of using smartphones and somehow tablets for many people.
Still, if the advertisement is well-made and interesting, they might notice it and then come back from their desktop. That’s why re-targeting campaigns can be so good. The best choice is not to decide whether Desktop vs mobile traffic in Affiliate Marketing is better, but to develop your campaign in both segments to get the maximum conversion rate.
When mobile is a bit more preferable?
- Mobile traffic is good for micro payments which are made via mobile operator bills. Still, it’s true only when the mobile connection is used. But if the user turns on Wi-Fi, all the benefits end. In this case most payments require one more step that lowers your conversion hugely. It’s also the reason why this kind of traffic is much cheaper.
To be fair, laptops and desktops can be connected to the carrier network too. For example, USB modems might be used for that. So, it is possible for them to work with carrier billing offers. But again, additional verification is required. It’s something like Wi-Fi traffic for mobile sector.
- Mobile traffic is not so expensive as desktop. If we look on the CPM rate, it’s even more obvious. Moreover, CTR is generally higher in mobile segment for Affiliate Marketing Offers. But everything is not so good as it seems to be. A big many of these clicks came to you unintentionally. It often happens that people tap the side of the screen they didn’t intend to. Or kids, they just click everywhere cause its funny or something looks bright and shiny. The idea is that CPM isn’t the best thing to focus on, trying to decide whether Desktop vs mobile traffic in Affiliate Marketing is better for you.
- The other area where mobile can overcome the desktop, but not always, is traffic generated by kids. It seems to be ridiculous, but kids can give you a lot of conversion. That’s because if they want something, they’ll find the way to make their parents buy it. The only thing is that there is a limited amount of products you can promote in this segment. But if we talk about computer games, toys and mobile apps, it can be a great source of potential customers.
When mobile wins?
There are some market segments where the choice “desktop or mobile traffic” becomes obvious. They’re the following:
- The total mobile invasion in the browsing sector during the last years had a significant effect on the market. Now it generates more traffic than desktops, which are loosing their positions year after year. In the lower tiers the whole process is even faster. There are a lot of affordable smartphones and tablets you can buy for about 50$ - a sum that is tiny for even the worst desktop.
- There are verticals that you won’t apply to desktops. Mobile apps, alternative stores, carrier billing offers – all that is exclusive for mobile devices. So, you can choose one of these verticals to work with. The market grows here very fast.
- There is a kind of traffic that you won’t find in the desktop segment. It might be traffic from mobile apps and carrier traffic. The last one is a very interesting area that is a whole vertical actually.
What is better for now; desktop or mobile traffic?
In the end, everything depends on the thing you’re advertising. That’s what should influence on your decision. Here are some examples:
- Lead generation works better with desktop traffic. First, it faces less quality problems. Second, desktop leads are usually paid way higher than mobile.
- When selling some tangible goods, it’s much better to start with desktop and then add mobile. The last thing will help you to catch the customers’ interest, which will turn into profit via re-targeting.
- If you work with lover tier GEOs, mobile is preferable. You’ll get bigger volume than in desktop sector. Moreover, it’s much more easy to monetize. This is also a very fast-growing area.
- It’s obvious that mobile-friendly offers better work with mobile (like mobile apps). The more mobile market will grow, the more suitable offers you’ll be able to find.
- If the things you advertise are targeted on older users, then choose desktop. In case they’re for young audience, then mobile will be preferable.
What about tablets?
If we talk about tablets, there is no reason to guess what’s best, Desktop vs mobile traffic in Affiliate Marketing. It’s something in the middle. The payouts are also somewhere between. Tablets often work better with desktop landing pages. So, it might be a good idea to target tablets and catch the advantages of both mobile and desktop.
To tell the truth, no meter what market segment you choose, everything depends on the right approach. You can make money in every sector, but the best idea is to work with all. Don’t limit yourself – this way you’ll cut your profits. You can try one at the beginning and then come to another after you master it.
As for the offers that are rather easy to work with these days, it’s definitely carrier billing in the lower GEOs. A very promising area and a good place for you to start.