GoldLead — doesn't shine, but gold

The purpose of the "Reviews" section on CPA.Club is to assist individuals within the affiliate marketing sector in identifying commendable companies. Simultaneously, it aids company representatives in recognizing errors, charting new avenues for growth, and connecting with potential clients.

Rather than repeatedly rehashing the self-proclaimed merits of businesses, we form the Club’s own perspective through a meticulous market analysis of brand engagement. Ultimately, our approach is characterized by integrity and transparency.

GoldLead time machine user interface

If you've experienced the era of commercial traffic before the dominance of Facebook and Google, you'll immediately know what we mean when you see the GoldLead interface. The network's minimalistic and simple structure is a direct throwback to the days of foreign affiliate programs from five to ten years ago. Back then, traffic was affordable, attribution was challenging, yet remarkably monetized given offers with straightforward conversion models. It's a reminiscent journey for many affiliates who plumbed the depths of ad arbitrage from redirect/pop traffic or adult teasers. Stepping into GoldLead's offer catalog will evoke a nostalgic rush, as memories of those good old times come flooding back.

Background and Narrative

GoldLead emerges as an affiliate partner network, developed by the AdsCompass traffic network team. We've previously shared an in-depth AdsCompass review on CPA.Club, but we'll provide a brief refresher. AdsCompass operates as an independent network, facilitating native/push/pop traffic through collaborations with numerous publishers across the globe.

The project's resources were split into two teams: one dedicated to crafting the platform's original engine, while the other focused on traffic management. During this period, the prevailing user behavior leaned heavily towards exploring diverse websites rather than favoring social networks and messaging apps. Consequently, websites hosted significant and active traffic. For the most part, webmasters often lacked extensive marketing expertise, making it better suitable to channel this traffic to advertising networks. Publishers could engage with the network, integrate ad blocks and pop scripts on their platforms, leaving the network to handle the rest. This setup proved highly convenient, allowing a concentration on traffic generation rather than complex marketing strategies.

The AdsCompass network operated within a particular framework: a substantial base of publishers dealing with traffic and pushes on one side and affiliates-teaser advertisers on the other. Over time, the platform's technical enhancements enabled extensive targeting parameters, leading to more efficient ad distribution. Gradually, it became apparent that relying solely on simplistic conversion models would limit the platform's potential profit. An RTB platform with streamlined processes could effectively function with minimal residual traffic. Nonetheless, each traffic network relies on its media buyers or the so-called traffic managers who channel untested or unsold traffic to CPA-partner offers.

The media buying expertise grows over time, with profitable verticals, specific offer preferences, distinct teasers, pre-lends, and approaches being crystallized. This expertise not only helps in monetizing unsold traffic but also enhances support for advertisers within the platform.

Flourishing traffic teams invariably evolve into full-cycle entities. With traffic and proficiency in CPA offers, integration of their product becomes a natural progression and a matter of time. Just as prominent affiliate agencies eventually launch their offerings or digital products, many traffic networks venture into creating CPA platforms. The launch of GoldLead was influenced by a number of factors, including:

  • Advancement of ADMY in terms of targeting parameters and traffic allocation;

  • Expansion of internal and external expertise within product and media buying teams;

  • Rapid surge in the iGaming vertical, yielding unexpectedly favorable outcomes on AdsCompass traffic.

The GoldLead affiliate program is the organic outcome of the progressive maturation of the AdsCompass and ADMY teams' accumulated expertise. However, it's important to note that this network stands as more than just a platform for pop and native ads. Instead, it serves as an autonomous aggregator of rather unique offers.

What about offers?

1) GoldLead serves as a Partner Program for managing traffic in niches that lack substantial representation in local affiliate markets. The traffic generated from pushes, native ads, teasers, pop-ups, redirects, and adult sites demonstrates effective conversion rates on offers featuring simplistic flows => with a primary focus on SOI & DOI, CPI offers and paid mobile content in their current form. The most compatible verticals for the aforementioned business models encompass sweepstakes, utilities (also known as software), and crypto-trading.

2) The network boasts a remarkable variety of offerings in the Dating vertical. The spectrum includes both elementary and subscription-based models, encompassing a wide range of GEOs and smartlinks loved by all. Both mobile and desktop funnels are available.

3) The network functions as an aggregator for iGaming offers. Casino affiliates tend to fall into two categories: those who favor SEO strategies, content-oriented projects, and the RevShare model. The other category drives explosive growth for casino providers by channeling substantial CPA deposits. In the current landscape, the most effective method for deposit arbitrage in iGaming offers involves directing traffic through webview mobile applications, with application traffic acquisition being facilitated through ASO, UAC, and Meta Ads.

And yet, Facebook’s torch (с) is not the only one shining. GoldLead's advantage lies in its broader perspective, not limited to a single source. This advantage stems from our enhanced expertise across various sources and the existence of our own source. This positioning potentially grants us exclusive access to certain offers or, at the very least, access under similar terms as those found in private CPA networks. 

How it works

How it works

The offer interface might appear somewhat scanty; descriptions for certain offers could be more detailed. However, this simplicity aligns with the kind of affiliate marketing that many people have grown accustomed to over the years. It is just enough to get launched, while any specificities can be tweaked with the manager through correspondence.

Given the assortment of SOI, DOI, and CPI offers, GoldLead could potentially face vulnerability to fraudulent activity. Similarly, the CPA model for iGaming isn't entirely risk-free. Understandably, affiliations involve manual moderation and approval, meticulous questionnaire-based assessments, and a zero-tolerance stance against “dubious” traffic practices, when partners refuse to disclose their while insisting on payment for a "test drop" of leads :).

Exactly a year ago, the author of this review engaged in the following dialogue with a GoldLead manager:


 - Registration failed:)

  • You have signed up on Goldlead CPA platform. My name is Nastya and I am your dedicated case manager. In order to approve your account which will grant you access to tracking links, I need some information about you))

  • Please, describe your experience with CPA, if any

  • Which countries and verticals are you interested in?

  • What types of traffic do you intend to employ?

  • I am interested exclusively in CPA offers regardless of GOEs. Specifically, in Cost-per-install for offers, when the advertiser pays for the installation of apps from the store. Smartlink should be fine, as long as it’s CPI flow. Do you have such options?

  • Could you, please, send me stats screengrabs with proof of payment?

Upon inquiring, "Do you even have CPI?", the manager took three days to seek clarity on the question. Interestingly, despite it being a Friday, the manager didn't even take the effort to provide an explanation; the conversation was simply reduced to the classic "first show me your status..." response…

Since then, GoldLead has made significant strides in community management and support. Now, access to the affiliate platform doesn't require “winning the manager’s heart”. The team has expanded with more managers, and GoldLead features an active public chat (with a chance to ping too hardworking agents during nighttime hours, and if you are especially lucky, even get a response from the owner). A chat room existed previously, though oddly, even the managers were not forthcoming about its existence.

To safeguard against fraudulent activities, the network has taken measures. GoldLead demonstrates proactive participation in prominent international conferences, (consistently maintaining a booth presence where managers are always available for inquiries). The affiliate network attracts a diverse range of publishers, including those from Asian regions. And as you might know, Asian affiliates are especially keen on engaging in fraud. Extended approval times, screenshots, phone correspondence with the manager and payout holds are all must-dos for this type of a Partner Program, rather than outdated practices.

Other noteworthy aspects:

  1. CASHBACK! That's the coined name for GoldLead’s loyalty program. Depending on your monthly payout amounts, a percentage of your profits (up to 15% per month at the sixth level) comes as cashback. It can be converted into cash at a rate of 10/1 or transferred to AdsCompass at a rate of x2. Here's a lifehack for those driving more than 30k bucks in turnover: 3% of your total turnover will be maintained on your AdsCompass balance, ready to be reinvested into your campaigns and once again trigger cashback rewards.

  1. Meet Lenni, the mischievous looking toxic but playful mushroom! Amidst a landscape of lackluster creativity in affiliate branding, Lenni brings refreshing and unconventional indecencies. The vibrant color scheme resonates with the adage: not everything that glitters is gold.

The brand’s “young age” is on the downsides. Nevertheless, GoldLead is developing in strides and somewhat unevenly. The partner program works remarkably well, boosted by its own traffic. However, there is still room for improvement in terms of positioning.

Conclusion and summary

When assessing a brand, many of us take into account the overall experience, interactions, and emotional responses. While GoldLead may not evoke strong emotions just yet, it does boast a vibrant design, a well-defined roadmap, and a plethora of offers that you won’t come across with other aggregators, even for those well-versed in the field. Since the advertiser-Partner Program interaction comes down to offers, GoldLead's offer management indeed stands out. With substantial potential for growth, a dedicated team, and a responsible approach to their product, GoldLead establishes itself as a commendable network. We are confident that their entire product lineup will sooner or later garner widespread recognition, and we, the CPA.Club community, are excited to give a thumbs up to GoldLead, wishing them all the best as they embark on new horizons.

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