Last updated on November 29th, 2018 at 11:20 am
Thinking about applying for the HotelsCombined Affiliate Program? If so, then you’re in the right place, I’ve researched everything you need to know about it and why you should consider promoting it as an affiliate.
*This page contains affiliate links to products I recommend. If you purchase something from this page, I may receive a small percentage of the sale at no extra cost to you
If you’re a lifestyle or travel blogger, you have the opportunity to join the Hotelscombined affiliate program to earn commissions. Still struggling to start your blog? Check out my step-by-step tutorial on how to set up your first WordPress blog.
Once you’re ready to start monetizing, you definitely need to consider the promoting the best hotel affiliate programs to make money. By the way, if you’re completely new to affiliate marketing, and want to learn the ins and outs of using affiliate links in your content, then check out Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing.
It’s one of the most popular programs online that is taught by a six-figure blogger. She shares her secrets of monetizing your blog and actually making money, check it out now!
HotelsCombined Affiliate Review
Booking.com, Hotel.com and HotelsCombined are some of the most popular and biggest hotel reservation affiliate programs online. Followed by Expedia, Orbitz, TripAdvisor, Agoda, and Travelocity.
I’ve personally used a lot of these programs both as an affiliate and as a customer. Today, I thought it was time to show you why I think it can be a great source of passive income for bloggers.
What Is HotelsCombined?
HotelsCombined was founded in 2005 and is headquartered in Syndey Australia. It is a metasearch engine that helps consumers find the best deals on their accommodations by comparing rates on all of the top hotel booking sites.
It compares the prices on top sites like Hotel.com, Booking.com, Expedia, Agoda and etc. This site makes it easy to compare prices on hotels across the globe.
Check out the Hotels Combined website to get a look and feel of how easy it is to use. The first thing you’ll notice is that there is a search box that allows you to enter the destination you plan on visiting.
All you have to do is enter your travel dates and destination and then click search. Within minutes you’ll get the lowest quotes found online.
How Does the Program Work?
They have a great affiliate program, which you can join here for free.
Once you join, you can start promoting them via your website, blog, social media channels, and etc.
When you join via FlexOffers, you’ll have access to tons of promotional tools that will help you become successful. Oh, and you’ll also get access to real-time reports.
I’ve created a FlexOffers review blog post, to help you navigate your way around the dashboard. Don’t worry, we’re going to take a look at the best way to start promoting this program.
We’ll also take a look at how you get paid and the commissions you can make.
But first, let’s talk about…
Widgets, Scrips and Other Promotional Tools
As soon as you get approved as an affiliate, you’ll have access to banners, widgets and text links you can use to promote.
Log into your FlexOffers account and go to Links. Find the Hotels Combined network and click “Search.” This will bring back tons of creatives you can use to promote.
Scroll through all the different widgets and when you’re ready to add one to your website, click on the view link, you’ll then have the following options:
- HTML Script
Banners: The HTML script automatically adds the banner to your sidebar, footer, or inside your content via the text editor.
The cool thing is that the banners come in many different dimensions you can choose from. They’ll go great on a travel website, and you might even get some good conversions.
The important thing to remember is that banner blindness is real, so don’t forget to test out using just plain old text links.
Let’s take a look at some of the available banners you can add to your blog.
When you use the plain link, you’ll have a unique ID attached to your link. This ID helps track visitors that come from your website.
Text Links: Adding an affiliate link to your blog is easy. The important thing to remember is to cloak your affiliate links to make them look pretty.
Don’t Forget About Deep Linking
One of the cool things about this program is that they allow you to deep link to a specific URL. You’ll make more sales if you can send people to the specific page that you are referring to.
Let’s take a look at what I mean. Let’s say that you write a blog post about your recent trip to Cancun. If you can share your experience about saving money using the Hotels Combined website and staying at the Panama Jack Resorts Cancun Hotel.
Notice how I linked to the Panama Jack Resorts Hotel, with my affiliate link. Pretty cool huh?
If someone is interested in finding out more about the hotel I stayed in or wants to stay in Cancun, all they have to do is click on my link.
It’ll take them directly to the hotel in Cancun. Trust me, you’re conversions will be better if you actually take the time to deep link.
It does take a little more time to create the links, but it’s worth it.
How You Earn Commissions
Okay, now let’s take a look at the money you can make. After all, we all want to get paid for our hard work of promotion.
Well, the great thing about this program is that it pays $0.50 and $2.00 per lead. I know what you’re thinking, that it’s not a lot of money.
They pay on a pay per lead basis. The difference is that you can earn a commission as soon the user clicks on one of the compared provider links. You can read how the HotelsCombined commission works.
But if you’re a travel or lifestyle blogger, you could literally earn a killing. All you have to do is add a widget to your blog and drive quality traffic to the site.
HotelsCombined has optimized their website for conversions. So, you shouldn’t have any trouble converting some of your visitors into actual leads.
From what I’ve read, the more leads you can generate, the more you’ll make per lead. So make sure that you’re sending quality traffic to their site.
Make sure that you understand the Hotels Combined policy. If you get a lot of clicks but none are converting into actual bookings, they may end up terminating your account.
They want to make sure that they filter out fake traffic. So whatever you do, don’t make the mistake of using
How Much Money Can You Earn?
We all want to know how much money we can earn from any program we join. The truth is that the sky is the limit.
It all depends on how you promote the program. If the program suits your niche, you’ll have a much better chance of making conversions.
The important thing to remember is that install Google Analytics and track your visitors. Once you start getting traffic through your website, you’ll be able to start using the reporting functionality built into Hotels Combined.
Their reporting feature will show you customized search criteria such as visitor value, leads, visits, and earnings all in one chart. You can then tell where your traffic is coming from and which traffic is converting the best.
They recommend that you use labels (which act as your own tracking code) to help you identify the best placements for conversions on your website.
You’ll get paid via PayPal or bank transfer once you reach the $100 threshold.
Is It The Best Hotel Affiliate Program
The affiliate Hotels Combined program is not the only player in town. If you’re looking for some great travel affiliate programs, don’t overlook the most common ones:
I’d recommend picking one and sticking with it. HotelsCombined will increase your commissions if you can generate more leads. If you’re promoting more than one hotel booking programs, you’ll have a hard time converting any of them.
That being said, you’ll want to see which one converts better. You might find that your avatar would rather book their vacations through Booking.com. Or maybe they like the search features on the Expedia website better?
Either way, you’ll have to find out what your audience prefers and provide them with it. This is the only way that you’ll be able to increase your conversions and earn more money.
How to Make Money With These Programs
If you’re a travel blogger, you should be able to do well with the Hotels Combined affiliate program, you can sign up here.
After doing some research, I have learned that the easiest way to make money with this program is to focus on events with deadlines. For instance, start promoting the upcoming Superbowl that is going to be held in US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, MN.
There are literally tons of different events with deadlines that you can promote. Start there and see if it helps you get some conversions. HotelsTravelClub is another great option to earning affiliate income on holiday accommodations. Sign up for their affiliate program through ShareASale.
As I said, you’re going to have to get a little creative on how you promote it. But once you find what works for you, it can definitely bring you some nice supplemental income.
Don’t forget to check out other hotel programs that might work for your blog. I highly recommend looking for Travelzoo and Hilton on Awin.
HotelsCombined Program Pros
The cool thing about this site and other travel affiliate programs is they make it easy for consumers to find the best deals. This is great news if you are a travel blogger whose audience loves saving money on their accommodations.
I’ve personally used this website to book a vacation in the past. I would use it again because of the time and money that it saved me.
- They offer a 365-day cookie, which means that when someone clicks on your link, your affiliate ID is stored in their computer for a whole year. You will receive commissions even if they don’t book their trip that day, and come back to book later. (pending they don’t clear their cookies.)
- Unlike other booking sites where you only earn a commission when someone books an actual hotel. As an affiliate for HotelsCombined, a commission is earned as soon as the user clicks on one of the compared provider links. Which means you won’t have to work as hard just to earn a commission.
- They have tons of creatives to help you promote their program. All the banners and widgets are easy to use and look great.
- You can deep link to specific pages, which will help you increase your conversions.
HotelsCombined Program Cons
- The commission is only $0.50 – $2.00. You would need a lot of conversions to make great money.
- They have a $100 threshold which means that you’ll need a lot of conversions before you can get paid.
- HotelsCombined has been known to close people’s accounts down if they don’t make enough conversions. You can lose your money if you haven’t reached their $100 threshold.
- You can not use your links on social media unless you ask for permission beforehand.
Sign Up Process
To sign up as an affiliate, click here. It’s easy to join and at the time of this writing, there are no requirements to join.
Unlike other programs that require you to have thousands of visitors, they automatically approve all affiliates.
Final Take Away
Affiliate marketing can be a lucrative business model if you take the time to find out what actually works. Most new bloggers think if they spam their blogs with tons of links, that they can start earning.
The truth is that you don’t want to overdo your links. I’ve personally found that links spread inside of your content work a lot better than banners.
I’d recommend using no more than 5 links if you have a 2,000- word blog post. I also use ThirstyAffiliates to help me cloak an auto-link my links.
What to Focus On As A New Affiliate
If you’re a brand new affiliate, your main focus needs to be content. I know you want to earn commissions, we all do.
But you won’t earn anything until you can provide the type of content that your readers want. Oh and don’t forget to do keyword research to make sure that you’re writing content that people are actually searching for.
I made a huge mistake when I started this blog and wasted so much time writing content that no one was looking for. Now that I’ve been using KWFinder, I’ve noticed a huge upward shift in my organic traffic.
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Comment below if you’re promoting this program, or if you have before in the past. Have you ever been kicked out of the program? If so, what did you do to get reinstated?