Review sites, also known as shopping comparison sites, are a golden mine because all the affiliate products you sell there usually come with hefty commissions. However, despite their huge potential shopping comparison sites frequently fail.

When they do have such an enormous money making potential, why does this happen?

Here are some common reasons:

The Wrong Platform

One really common reason why a review site won’t make it is that you have chosen the wrong platform. There are tons of applications you can use for the purpose but not all of them are equal. If your platform offers no way to distinguish a product that is really a best seller, or is hard to maintain, or is user-unfriendly, then all your efforts are in vain.

I wouldn’t like to recommend a single solution as the best one in the niche because there are many good ones and each of them is fit for a different purpose but basically one of the easiest to run, yet it comes bundled with almost anything you will need, is a WordPress review plugin. In many aspects a WordPress review plugin is a better choice than a dedicated review application, especially if you are already familiar with WordPress itself.

Poor Niche and/or Product Selection

In addition to a platform that works against you, a common reason for failure is poor niche and/or product selection. While there are many successful general sites, running such a site is a huge task and you might not have the resources for it. This is why, it is better to concentrate on a niche – i.e. health products, gadgets, software, etc. Picking the niche isn’t easy because all the profitable niches are already overcrowded but with some research you can find good niches where the level of competition isn’t horrifying.

Even if you have picked a good niche, if the products you have selected to sell are not best sellers, this again leads to failure. In order to pick products that sell, you need to know the market and to follow all the new developments in the niche. This is why, it is better if you select a niche you have some expertise in than to jump into a presumably more profitable one you have no idea about.

Not Enough Traffic or Poorly Converting One

No matter how great your products are, if you don’t have traffic, or if your traffic is poorly converting, this isn’t making you money. Because of this, you need to spend a lot of time on traffic building because without good traffic you are lost.

Poor Rankings with Search Engines

It is true that you should never depend on one traffic source only and search engines, no matter how great for bringing traffic they are, aren’t an exception. However, one of the special things about search engines is that traffic from there is relatively cheap (compared to traffic from PPC, for example) and converts remarkably well. You might not want 80% of your traffic to come from search engines because this makes you dependent but you simply can’t afford to rank poorly with them.

When you know the intricacies of successfully running a review site and you devote sufficient amounts of time and effort to it, you can really make money with such a site. However, don’t take this for granted but also don’t let the failure prospect scare you – just do what it takes and hope for the best!

Guest Post By: Ada is the Blogger Relations Manager at WinkPress – a site where you can read about WordPress, its cutest plugins and the best themes. Visit the site for more information about WordPress review plugins.