Facebook Ads vs Google Ads – Which Suits Affiliates More?

The topic of Facebook Ads vs Google Ads is commonly debated among affiliate marketers and other online business people and the most obvious question that gets asked is: Which is better for me to use?

Well in my personal opinion, as someone who has used (and still uses) both ad networks, I say the answer is both (provided you are experienced in using both of them and have money to spend on either one) and in this post, I’ll explain why, but also give you specific tips on which network to get started with (you may be surprised by what I suggest you do).

Before I share whether Facebook Ads is better than Google Ads (or vice versa), I gotta something off my chest:

google ads vs facebook ads 03

And that is that there’s a lot of misinformation out there on this topic. What I mean is very often you’ll stumble across blog posts, videos and case studies of people who say Facebook Ads is better, and at the same time with a little digging, you’ll find affiliates who say the complete opposite in that Google Ads is better.

With so many opposing views on this topic, it’s no wonder affiliates who are just getting involved with PPC networks get confused. However, what I’ve found in 99% of cases is that:

  1. People who preach that one ad network is better than the other are just parroting what they hear (in other words, they have no clue).
  2. I also often stumble across people’s content who say one network is better than the other, only to find out that behind their claims is a promotion for some PPC training program they swear by (in other words, it’s hard to trust if their claims are authentic).

When you look at this topic from this lens, it’s easy to tune out all the confusion. Now there is the 1% of people in this topic who will still give you a clear answer and in my opinion, most of them would agree with me.

My whole point in this article is to do the following things:

  • Share the comparisons and differences between Google Ads and Facebook Ads.
  • Share which network has it’s unique advantages over the other for affiliate marketers.
  • Explain whether you should even be involved with PPC to begin with (and if not, what’s better).

And with that, let’s get to the post:

My history with Facebook Ads and Google Ads explained:

I’ve used Google Ads off and on to do affiliate marketing. I’ve also had my account there suspended 2 times and last year got it reinstated and still use to to this day with pretty good success. I’ve gotten about 100,000+ clicks on all the ads I’ve created and made a pretty decent profit margin from them. I do also use YouTube ads (since it’s part of it), but this post is going to focus solely on Google Ads.

Regarding Facebook Ads, I’ve also used it off and on to promote affiliate offers, but not as much or as long as Google Ads. My success rate with Facebook Ads hasn’t been magnificent, but I have a great deal of experience in making decent ads, getting targeted audiences and promoting relevant offers. To date, I’ve gotten 1,000’s of highly targeted clicks to my ads and spent under $0.50 on each click (not bad at all).

In other words, I possess a lot of experience as a whole on the topic of pay per click affiliate marketing, at least enough to write on this particular topic.

Facebook Ads vs Google Ads, the main similarities (10):

  1. Both of these are pay per click networks that are used by tons of businesses, affiliates or otherwise.
  2. Both networks involve the PPC model in which you pay for every click your ad gets.
  3. Both networks can be highly optimized to be appear for specific audiences.
  4. Both networks can bring a large amount of highly targeted traffic to your affiliate offers.
  5. Both networks can either be a highly profitable venture for affiliates or a massive waste of money if they’re not careful.
  6. Both networks require a bit of a learning curve to make ads.
  7. I would be very careful listening to the advice of “specialists” on each network (You’ll end up spending more).
  8. Both networks are great to use for 1 page site affiliate promotions (or email marketing).
  9. I would advise using both networks for promoting high ticket affiliate offers too.
  10. Generally speaking, if you know what you’re doing, the costs for using both networks is about the same (Under $0.50 per click for most offers and $1 or higher per click for targeting general audiences).

The 7 main differences between these networks:

  1. Facebook Ads is a bit harsher towards affiliates than Google Ads (more red tape).
  2. Specifically, it’s MUCH easier to promote make money online products through Google Ads than Facebook Ads.
  3. Google Ads makes targeting keywords possible. Facebook Ads focuses entirely on demographics and interests for targeting.
  4. For product review ads, Google Ads is your go to network, not Facebook Ads (you can’t target product keywords).
  5. I would say Google Ads provides more open ended opportunities over Facebook Ads.
  6. Setting up an ad on one network is both different and similar (in other area) so each requires it’s own learning curve.
  7. The terminology in both networks is a bit different and takes some time to get used to.

Based on these comparisons and differences, you can see how similar Google Ads and Facebook Ads are in terms of how they work and the opportunity they bring. Side note, if you’d like to make ads on either network:

An example of where Google Ads and Facebook Ads differ most:

1) For Google Ads:

Let’s say I wish to promote a popular Clickbank product related to weight loss. With Google Ads, I can set my ad up in a way where it’ll only show up to people who enter the title of that product into Google. I therefore get the most targeted audience to see that ad. All I have to do is list the keywords (correctly) when I make my ad so that happens. This makes the process of “hunting” for the right audience relatively easy.

In fact, here is an example of a Google Ad campaign I have which is made up ENTIRELY of product reviews (notice the conversions):

my google ads summary report 01

2) For Facebook Ads:

If I were to try and promote the same exact Clickbank product, I wouldn’t be able to target keywords. I would instead have to pick out specific demographics of people who would be most interested in that product (weight loss, people in a specific age range, gender, likes on Facebook diet pages, and specific locations). This does require knowing your niche very well, but it is an art that gets easier.

Here is an example of some of my ads I have set up on Facebook Ads to showcase what to expect:

my facebook ads summary report 02

Now there are people who can take that specific example of the Clickbank product and promote it better on one of these networks than the other. Me personally, I prefer Google Ads because I’m a bit lazy in regards to the ad set up process and targeting keywords just makes the process so much easier for me personally.

There are people who would scoff at that statement and tell me that Facebook Ads would be an easier option, and depending on the skill level and preference, that might work out well for them.

2 final points on the topic of Facebook Ads vs Google Ads (which one is for you):

1) At the end of the day, each PPC network offers access to a wide range of audiences and you can succeed with either one if you possess the right knowledge on how to set up your ad and market your affiliate offers to the RIGHT audiences.

This is why I prefer you use both networks eventually. If nothing else, starting with Google Ads might be a better option (at first), but then I would recommend you get into Facebook Ads. Having affiliate experience with one PPC network makes entering a new one much easier.

2) I always preach this point and it bears repeating, especially in this topic: Never, ever get involved with PPC if you’re new to affiliate marketing and/or out of money. Just forget it. You should never gamble with your money on PPC if this is the case!

If you are in this second situation, you should know that there’s many other ways to get involved in affiliate marketing other than PPC and get amazing success in it. Blogging, local marketing and YouTube affiliate marketing are some of the best options for you.

In fact, I make it clear to people that despite the fact that I do PPC, most of my affiliate income doesn’t come from it! It actually comes from blogging which is one of the 3 alternative options.

If you want to get into affiliate marketing, see great success in it, but aren’t cut out for PPC (yet), learn how to do ALL of this from Wealthy Affiliate. They will properly help you get started in building a real affiliate business that is built up from a blog, and then profits from PPC networks.

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16 thoughts on “Facebook Ads vs Google Ads – Which Suits Affiliates More?”

  1. Hello, first of all I hope you are well. I read your article and indeed, I worked for a while with google ads and Clickbank, but I paid more than I earned and in addition headaches but when I switched to facebook ads, it was more convenient for me as I can manage the budget and no need for PPC advertising

    It was cheaper and more revenue. Now i am part of the great community of wealthy affiliate. Thank you for all the effort you made to clear things up and show us if facebook ads was better than google ads.

    Reply
    • So Google Ads does help you control your budget Omama. You can set a daily budget in your campaigns and even your keywords. Facebook Ads is more on the general campaign level. I still prefer Google Ads for it’s specific way of targeting audiences.

      Reply
  2. Hi Vitaliy, my question with regards to ppc ads is: With so many “gurus” , and there are thousands, offering their “system” or “course” as a sure fire method to succeed, who would or what course would you genuinely recommend to follow, in order to achieve some semblance of success with this. I have heard of and seen hard luck stories, whereby people have spent a fortune with no success at all. Not something I’d like to experience myself. Thanks.

    Reply
    • Hi Amanda that’s a great question and there is 1 source I recommend for this stuff: Wealthy Affiliate. Inside that program, if you upgrade to their Premium Plus membership, you will get access to numerous courses on PPC, including:

      My personal Google Ads course (7 lessons).

      My Bing Ads course (5 lessons).

      Facebook Ads training from another expert in the field.

      Any updates to the courses/future lessons.

      You can get ALL of these (and any future ones) for a low monthly price inside WA. I’ve been applying successful PPC strategies on multiple networks for many years (not without the hardships of course) and these courses teach you what I know and do to make it work.

      Point is: You don’t need to look around for this info or spend crazy money on it. You get it all inside WA.

      Reply
  3. I am fairly new to affiliate marketing and am very tempted to try PPC on Google Adwords as it does make so much sense. If someone puts in the corresponding keyword you are very much more likely to make a sale. 

    However, I have heard your warning and from others too that you should wait until you get some proper training on it before risking your money. I believe that the Google Adwords consultants are very good. Do you think getting their help is sufficient or are they too biased? What’s your experience of their service to you?

    I had no idea that Facebook PPC was based on demographics and would assume that this is not an accurate method to reach potential customers. However, I bow to your superior knowledge and accept that perhaps this is something to explore in the future.

    I am also extremely reassured that the majority of your income comes from blogging and free traffic. I am a newbie on Wealthy Affiliate and that’s exactly what I’m working on accomplishing. I would definitely endorse your recommendation 100%. Thank you!

    Reply
    • Hi Jacqueline, so my experience with Google Ads support isn’t very positive. In my opinion they are often just giving you super basic advice that honestly I would take with a grain of salt as it sometimes leads to you spending more money on less quality traffic, but that’s not what they make it sound like. 

      When you don’t know much about Google Ads or PPC in general, anyone who knows even a little bit (even if they are wrong) can sound amazing and professional, but once your experience and knowledge on the matter rises, you will quickly see how often they are incorrect about their advice. 

      I have also had this experience with Bing Ads staff. Put it this way: If they were super amazing at PPC, they’d likely be running their own successful campaigns vs working customer support.

      Now this doesn’t mean ALL the “experts” at Google Ads are bad. You will always find a rare gem here and there, but my advice hasn’t been  “don’t listen to them”. My advice is know the material first and then if you talk to the staff, you’ll be able to distinguish whether or not the advice they give you is good or not. Right now, I only rely on Google Ads support if I have an ad that was disapproved for ridiculous reasons and it needs manual review. Other than that, I rely only on my own knowledge with PPC.

      And on that note, what I suggested with following what Wealthy Affiliate teaches is really the best starting point. If you follow their training and apply it as intended, you will grow your success, experience and understand sales funnels, keyword targeting and other super important fundamentals that will make easing into the PPC realm MUCH easier (and more affordable).

      Reply
  4. I still prefer Facebook ads, even though there is no way to access Facebook in China. But still love your sharing, lets me really understand which is the best. Most people I know who consider getting into paid ads have none of these things which is why there’s 3 factors to consider.

    Reply
  5. Thank you for the comparison of ads between google and Facebook, and for the advice to beginners just to rather forget the PPC, I always thought it was a bit difficult.  Even though I’m a beginner affiliate (I will follow your advice) I can see why you prefer Google to Facebook. The breakdown and comparisons between the two is very informative. 

    Reply
    • I know people who swear by Facebook Ads over Google Ads, but my own experiences have shown me Google Ads is better for affiliates, but of course experienced ones who have money to spend that is!

      Reply
  6. First of, I’ve read many of your articles and i truly appreciate the amount of value you provide in each post. Although I myself have been doing this a while, it’s always nice to learn from other experienced marketers like yourself. I will be bookmarking a ton of your content and sharing them as well.

    I have been really successful with facebook ads, but never really dabbled into google ads. After reading your post, I’m going to try as it seems there’s a ton i am missing out! Thank you!

    Reply
  7. I personally have found with facebook ads in the past that they are quick to ban ad accounts which is a real pain. Facebook is a poor company as well in terms of their practices and reaching them. I would prefer to use Google ads. Do you think you can get to a good level of income with standard SEO and a content based website promoting affiliate products without paid ads? At what stage should you think about running say google ads – once you earn more than say 30k per yr from affiliate marketing business?

    Reply
    • Great question and the answer is YES, you can make good money (full time income even) from just SEO. In other words, you don’t need paid ads to succeed online. 

      Regarding when to properly enter into the business, I don’t think there’s a minimum income requirement. I would say the right time to get into paid ads is when the following conditions exist:

      1) You have an SEO site making you money.

      2) You have enough experience with affiliate marketing and profiting from that site.

      3) You have several $100 to spend on paid ads as an experiment and aren’t worried about losing them.

      Most people I know who consider getting into paid ads have none of these things which is why there’s 3 factors to consider.

      Reply
  8. I have been looking for a more detailed explanation on Google & Facebook ads. Facebook ads were found to be hard to use for affiliate marketing and they deny my ads. When I use Facebook ads for an MLM company they approve every one of them. Google ads are more for affiliate marketing and helps me bring in profits from my blogs. I appreciate you describing the difference in your article. 

    Reply
    • I find it amazing (but not surprising) that FB ads approves your ads when you market MLM programs but not affiliate products. It’s crazy to me, but this is just something I’ve come to expect. Google Ads has been way easier for me to use for affiliate marketing too.

      Reply

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