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Sell Your Own Information Products with E-junkie

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on March 7, 2009 in Beyond Freelance Writing, E-books
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One of the best things you can do as a freelance Web writer is diversify your income streams by creating, and selling, informational products. I would hazard a guess that the most common informational products for freelance writers to be selling would be e-books or reports (you also might sell membership to premium content on a website though).

Now I've tried a few different services or methods of selling informational products, including manual delivery with Paypal payment buttons, E-junkie for payments and secure delivery, and Clickbank.

E-junkie is by far my favorite of those methods from a seller's perspective. Here are some of its benefits:

  • E-junkie can be used to sell pretty much any kind of informational product you could imagine.
  • You can sell up to 10 different products (you can sell an unlimited number of each) for just $5 per month - other service levels exist if you need to sell more.
  • They don't charge transaction fees (Clickbank's biggest problem - they really add up).
  • They don't charge a setup fee (Clickbank does).
  • You can easily create discount codes for promotions (you can't with Clickbank).
  • E-junkie gives you secure delivery built in - for example, you can set a time limit on each download link set, or a maximum number of downloads before a link expires to stop people from passing around a static download link (you can't do this with Clickbank either).
  • You can still accept Paypal payments, among other options.
  • You can run your own affiliate program there (the only problem is that you deal with the affiliate administration and payments yourself - although they do give you the tools and reports - the affiliate issue is the only area where Clickbank comes out on top).
  • It can be used in conjunction with other programs - for example, if you want to have an affiliate program through Clickbank but want E-junkie to secure your downloads and delivery, you can do that (that's what I'm doing now with the first Web Writer's Guide e-book).
  • When you make a sale through E-junkie, you get your payment right away (unlike services like Clickbank where they hold the payments and pay you weekly, bi-weekly, etc.).
  • You have complete control over your guarantees if you want to offer one (or return policies) - you don't with Clickbank, where you have to abide by their return policies.

E-junkie's a great service. I love it. I went with the E-junkie / Clickbank combo strictly to have Clickbank manage the affiliate program. Honestly, that program hasn't done much for my e-book sales other than cost me more money (I lose nearly $4 of every sale I make myself, which would be unneccessary since I was making those same sales solely through E-junkie without the added cost). Unless that changes quite significantly, I've already decided that the future e-books in my series at Web Writer's Guide will be sold exclusively through E-junkie without the affiliate program.

If you're looking to start selling products of your own, I urge you to give them a look. The interface is pretty intuitive even if you're new to selling informational products, the prices can't be beat, and you retain a lot of freedom that you would lose with other services.

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Jennifer Mattern is a professional blogger, freelance business writer, and indie author. She began writing for clients in 1999 and started her first blog in 2004.

She owns 3 Beat Media - a publishing and client services company which operates All Indie Writers as well as several other websites and blogs including The Busy Author's Guide and BizAmmo. Jenn comes from a background in online PR and social media consulting, having owned a small PR firm for several years before choosing to pursue a full-time writing and publishing career.

Jenn also writes fiction under multiple pen names in the areas of children's fiction, mysteries, and horror fiction. Jenn is an active member of the Horror Writers Association (HWA) and currently serves as the organization's Assistant Coordinator of Promotions and Social Media.


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14 Comments

  1. Scarlett @ Self-Savvy March 7, 2009 Reply

    Thank you for these insights on eJunkie, Jennifer! I was curious about the benefits of that site vs ClickBank. It really makes me want to try my hand at writing a book someday! :)

  2. Lillie Ammann March 7, 2009 Reply

    Jennifer, I hadn’t heard of E-Junkie until someone from E-Junkie left a comment on a blog post I wrote about e-books about a year or so ago. Though I don’t sell any products of my own, I have used E-Junkie for several of my clients, selling both digital products and hard goods. All have been very happy, and on the few occasions I’ve had questions, I got prompt, responsive answers.

  3. rick broomell March 8, 2009 Reply

    Hi

    Thanks for the heads up on e-junkie. It does seem simpler, cleaner than clickbank.

    One thing, though. I couldn’t browse what was offered in the marketplace. I only found a search option. Do they not have their products set up in categories?

    Maybe I just missed it.

    Thanks

    Rick

  4. Vern at AimforAwesome March 14, 2009 Reply

    I’ve been leaning toward e-junkie. Brian Gardner with the Revolution themes sells through there and with all the points you just mentioned it seems ridiculous to choose Clickbank! Great article. Thanks.

  5. This is the first article I’ve read that made the differences between the two programs clear. I was already leaning toward e-Junkie, but you’ve convinced me. Thanks!

  6. Ashley Karyl October 7, 2009 Reply

    Thanks for writing this article. I recently wrote an ebook and went to ClickBank for the affiliate market, but chose e-junkie for the delivery part, however, I am now seriously investigating the pros and cons switching completely to e-junkie for their integration with PayPal and Google Checkout.

    All the points you made are noteworthy but another factor I am interested in is the cart abandonment rate, since I have a strong suspicion that more buyers will complete their purchases using the e-junkie system and PayPal. Any thoughts? I’d love to see some cold hard data on conversion rates between the two systems.

    • Jennifer Mattern October 7, 2009 Reply

      I didn’t stick with Clickbank long enough to get any hard data on conversion comparisons. It was enough for me to know that I was losing far too much to CB per sale when the bulk of sales were coming directly through me (and not affiliates). When I used the two together though, it went through CB, but e-junkie was still the payment processor being used anyway (their system, and still through Paypal links).

  7. Ashley Karyl October 7, 2009 Reply

    Thanks for your comments Jennifer. I am currently finding that my direct sales out number affiliate sales through CB by a ratio of 16:1. I don’t know if that is simply because I work harder or because the quality of my marketing is better but to me it suggests that the idea of sitting back and relying on affiliates to go out there and do all the hard work is pure fantasy.

  8. Jennifer Mattern October 7, 2009 Reply

    Here’s the way I saw it at the time — I had a large enough audience of my own that I was able to reach my sales goals w/ the e-book w/o relying on affiliates (and why pay out not only 50% or more to affiliates, but also fees for each of my own sales to CB when I didn’t need the affiliate backing?).

    If you have a large enough audience or are able to market more aggressively than others would, it could very well be in your interest to skip the affiliate program. It’s going to vary from one niche to the next. If you’re writing in the “make money online” niche there are probably thousands of potential affiliates. For me, writing in the freelance writing niche, that kind of network just didn’t exist so it wasn’t worth it.

  9. Ashley Karyl October 7, 2009 Reply

    Yes, that makes a lot of sense. I actually started with zero marketing or audience when the book was released just over a month ago and I’ve quickly learned that building a targeted audience takes a great deal of time and effort, but even so I am still making far more sales than all the affiliates combined. I think many just post a link on a web page with countless other items and forget about it.

    I’ve started a blog and I am hoping to create greater recognition through writing online articles and tutorials etc. My background is in photography, so all this writing is quite a departure! In truth I’d like to work with affiliates, but if possible build some kind of working relationship with sites that have good quantities of relevant traffic where we know each other and can work together. That way it’s just a bonus and I know what kind of marketing they are doing.

  10. Susan Pomeroy September 14, 2010 Reply

    E-junkie has affiliate management too, btw. Their interface is not the most elegant, but they offer more, for a lower price, than any other solution I’ve found out there: secure digital downloads, affiliates, discounts, paypal integration, etc. I found CB next to useless; e-junkie turns a site into a viable business.

    Regarding affiliates, I think affiliate marketing is a specialized kind of selling that requires just as much effort and focus as any other marketing campaign… unfortunately there’s not a “no work” option!

    • Jennifer Mattern September 15, 2010 Reply

      Yep. It was mentioned in the 4th point from the bottom. ;) I just opted not to use that route because I had no interest in their more manual approach to affiliate program management at the time (and probably still wouldn’t have the time for it).

      There’s certainly still a good deal of work involved in affiliate marketing. After all you have to recruit those affiliates. But there’s a difference in recruiting people who want to make money and recruiting those you want to part with some. Since it’s the latter that many writer-types are uncomfortable with, an affiliate program might be an outstanding idea if they have products or services where it would work.

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