CPS, CPA, CPL, CPI or CPC and CPM – which one should you choose?

There are several payment models and it’s not always easy to tell them apart from each other. Let’s try to work it out 😉

1. CPS Cost-Per-Sale

Cost-Per-Sale is the sale price and Pay-Per-Sale is a payment for sale. With this payment option, the advertiser pays for purchases made by users attracted to the site. Pay-per-sale can be fixed or based on a percentage of the value of the goods or services. When using the CPS model, the partner will receive a reward only after the transaction is confirmed.

Examples of CPS offers are Binary/Crypto, Male Enhancement, Gambling and others.

2. Cost Per Action (CPA)

Cost Per Action is a price per action or Pay Per Action (PPA), payment per action.

CPA offers commission payment to affiliates, provided that the user has carried out the desired target action. 

What type of action is this? As an example, that would entail creating an account on a dating site or a casino site, sending an email address, applying for a free trial or credit card, making a call, and much more.

The more information an advertiser receives about a customer, the more they are willing to pay.

This is particularly true for Tier 1 and Tier 2 countries. With these Geos, contact information about users is highly valued. 

A broad range of verticals and niches is widely practiced with CPA payment models. For example, Dating, Casual Dating, Gay Dating, Mainstream, Gambling, and others.

Many CPL (Cost Per Lead) and CPI (Cost Per Install) payment models partners consider the CPA to be a special case since both models involve payment for an action.

2.1. CPL (Cost Per Lead)

A lead is a potential customer that the advertiser pays for. 

A key action for the payout can be a completed form or a request on a site, a subscription, or the creation of a profile. CPL works with Dating, Mainstream, Gambling and others.

2.2. Cost Per Install (CPI)

This payment model is used in mobile arbitration and involves the installation of an application. It also works with verticals such as Dating, Cams, and Adult Games.

3. CPC (Cost Per Click)

CPC (Cost Per Click) or PPC (Pay Per Click). When using CPC, the advertiser pays for each click made by the user on the ad that redirects them to the site.

This is a great source of income for the website and mobile app owners with a good traffic. Revenue per click can range from a few cents to a dollar or more.

Partners rarely make offers to affiliates using CPC payment. This model is suitable for website and application owners that are looking to monetize their own traffic. 

4. CPM (Cost Per Mille)

CPM (Cost Per Mille) is the cost per 1000 shows.

This model provides payment for every 1000 shows of an ad on the website. It is also more suitable for website and app traffic monetization. However, it’s quite difficult to find a partner with CPM payment offers. CPM is a good choice for sites with high traffic. Payment ranges from a few dozen cents to $30-$40.

Which model should you choose?

Of course, there is no simple and fast recipe😉 In our opinion, when choosing between CPS and CPA, it is best for beginners to choose CPA (in particular, CPL and CPI). 

  • First, they are easier to convert. It is much easier to get a user to enter an email address or phone number, rather than buy a product or service. 
  • As a rule (although not always), CPA campaigns require a lower initial budget, and they are easier to optimize.

In any case, it is better to start with one payment model.

Start making profit
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