You have an blog running and you are promoting products or services within your content using your affiliate links , those that will give you commissions for your work.Have in mind though that if every page or post that you create is promotional and therefore includes affiliate links you won’t get “Awesome Rankings” and you won’t convert so well.I already gave you a small overview for that subject in the end of my previous post where I discussed about the primary content pages that you should create in order to increase the authority and the status of your website.
Today I Want To Expand Upon The Properly Usage Of Affiliate Links And I Will Share With You Some Tips & Techniques That You Can Apply In Order To Maximize Conversions For Your Blogs
Techniques To Apply For Your Affiliate Links
♦ Do not Over-Use Them
Not every post or page you create should be promotional and contain affiliate links.The search engines and people do not like such behaviour.Keep a good ratio between promotional and useful posts.You want to give a reason to your visitors to come back , to share your content with their network and speak the word of mouth for your website.
Any marketer or website owner can promote any product , but “Top Priority” should be the valuable content.Is not the promotions that will set you apart from the competition but the unique content , the engagement with your visitors and your helpful recommendations.
Additionally do not create posts including more than one (1) promotional offers.Instead if you want to promote another product do it in a new post.Recently I came across a post which was about some potential ways to make money online.The author was presenting 10 or more online opportunities … but… every paragraph and every way to make money online was containing an affiliate link.This is not advertising , this is bombarding.
♦ Consider in shortening these affiliate links
…to make them appealing and not intruding.Raw affiliate links are usually very long and contain numbers and extensions in the end , not the most impressive appearance for someone hovering over them with the mouse.
For this purpose I am using a free plugin , called Pretty Link created by Caseproof.Simply go to your WordPress dashboard , plugins , add new , search for Pretty Link Lite.The free version includes many functions but there is the option to upgrade for the paid pro version if you want.
This way you can create shorter affiliate links that look beautiful.The new links will redirect to your affiliate links.The most important factor is that these links begin with your domain name.For example one of my affiliate links look like this
..webmarketsupport.com/WAhome instead of
You can therefore use this plugin to shorten your links and your affiliate links for the social media.Especially for tweets this is a huge advantage that will add to your authority.
You can group some of your links into categories for better management and the plugin tracks the clicks of these links automatically.So that you know how many times a link was clicked just by looking into the plugin dashboard.A very useful feature that can help you operate some A/B tests.
Another nice feature is that you can use the plugin to track even non affiliate links that you use on your website.For example you can apply this technique to track your previous mentioned Call To Action Buttons that redirect visitors inside your website so that you know which button works better.
♦ Centralize Your Main Promotions
I will give you an example of what I do.If you are a repeated visitor of Web Market Support you probably have read some of my reviews on internet marketing products.Not all of these reviews are promotional.In fact only a small portion of them are
But sometimes I grab the opportunity to refer to my “Affiliated” reviews through these posts.Usually in the end of these reviews I recommend to my visitors to visit one of those Affiliated blog posts.Beware though that I am not repeating this process with every single post.Sometimes I refer them to other articles , free of promotions.You don’t want to redirect visitors every time to your posts that contain affiliate links.That will result in a poor User Experience and we want our content to stand in front of the competition.
♦ Call To Action
In order to maximize your conversions and to keep your visitors on your website and therefore decrease your bounce rate you can direct to other posts (as we discussed).Do that at the end of every post using a Call To Action , a button , or a small image or graphic showing the visitors where to go next.
A call to action should never contain an affiliate link.It serves only as a bridge to the posts you want the visitors to go.Leave those for your sidebar.
♦ Redirecting To Landing Pages Of Your Affiliated Merchants
Some of the merchants that you co-operate with provide affiliate links to specific pages on their websites.Some of them only offer links for their homepage.If you have the ability to redirect your visitors to special landing pages of your merchants that may increase your commissions.It depends on your content and what you are trying to offer.
You can include more than One (1) affiliate links in a post but all should be about the Same Product and they have to redirect to the Same website.You can add an affiliate link for the merchant’s homepage and another one for a landing page or any other of the merchant’s content you think it will be proved useful.
♦ Do not use the Sidebar Inside Posts
Although that technique is optional and it depends on your personal preferences and your website theme and layout it can be proved a useful tactic.We use the sidebar of our websites for many operations.Some of them contain our promotions and include our affiliate links.I use the sidebar as well for my offers but only in my Homepage.I follow what Jay Neill does on his website , one of my mentors.
I follow this point of view because I want my visitors fully concentrated when they read my articles and reviews.That article you are reading now is not an exception.There is no sidebar , moreover there are no affiliate links and offers.Having a sidebar inside your posts can distract your visitors.
Of course that depends of the nature of your website.Magazines and other types of websites using their sidebar on every page.But if you own an affiliate website that its main intention is to help people you might consider removing the sidebar at all.Keep it for your homepage.
The same principle can be applied for your website footer.The footer is visible to every post and page.Use it to redirect people to your content but not include any affiliate links there.Your footer can be served as an additional call to action if you create small images or graphics.
♦ Disclose the Endorsement
Lately I came across an article of FTC about endorsements.In order to be 100% sure of the regulations you can add a small disclosure to the posts where you promote products and that contain affiliate links.You can also redirect people to your Disclosure – Disclaimer Page from there.
Doing so you are very clear of your messages , you inform people that you may get a compensation if they buy through your links and you avoid risks.On your disclosure main page do not forget to clarify that the final product is offered at no additional cost , the price stays the same.
Related Source : Google’s Guidelines For Affiliate Websites
I hope you will find this article useful for your campaigns as an affiliate marketer and website owner.As always I am waiting for your comments and thoughts.Your participation can only benefit everyone.Are you using these techniques to your website?…Would you add any other tactic to the above mentioned?..
Till my next article , your online partner
Improve UX and SEO with Internal Links
Thank you, I really enjoyed this post and I learned a lot.
I have often heard it is not good to have affiliate links in every post but you have really explained affiliate links for blogs in detail here.
Now I have some more information to digest and implement. I have no idea how to disable my side bar for all posts except my home page… my home is my blog roll and my side bar which has my newsletter subscribe form and my affiliate links show on every page and post on my website.
So glad you enjoyed the information and my strategies Lynne , for one more time.If you want to disable the sidebar form the posts you can do it on your theme’s general settings.Now every theme is different but it should be only a click.If you play around you will notice it.
Thank you for this visit and for your excellent participation and support.All my best.
Tasos, thank you!
I haven’t been overusing affiliate links by any means, I’m starting really slowly with them, but now I know how to go and tidy up the raw links that I do have and that job is probably overdue.
Thanks for a very informative article and one that I am book marking because it has a lot of details that I need to use and refer back to.
All the best,
Hello Alison , I am glad you found this article helpful.Yes , you do a nice job for not overusing these links , keep a low profile for the future , if possible.This way you build trust and increase your authority.Otherwise you sound like an advertiser , desperate for money in most cases.
You are welcome to return anytime , thank you for this visit and for taking the time to participate in the comments.Good luck with your work.
I think this post will help a lot of people understand what it takes to build a website the right way and how to get traffic to it in order to make sales. You really go into great detail of what is needed and what to expect when starting out. I hope that your post will reach those who want to get started but don’t know how. Keep up the good work!
Welcome again Deidre , I am very glad you found value in that article.It is indeed one that is aiming those who just starting out with affiliate marketing.But it can be applied even from some advanced marketers that use their affiliate links in a Not so properly way.
Thank you for another visit and for taking the time to participate in the comments.
Hi there Tasos,
Very interesting article, lots of very useful information!
I think Affiliate Marketing has changed drastically the last few years, in a positive way for the user, which also makes it better for the promoters when they do it well.
A website that just bombards you with affiliate links are usually just people who want some quick money from whatever kind of product or service, so they’re very untrustworthy at the same time.
As for not using the side bar in your posts, how’s your experience with that? Do you see there a difference in time people stay on the page? I’m quite interested in that 🙂
Welcome back to my blog Maarten.You have a very good point here , these website owners are looking for some quick cash , ignoring their reputation and the true potential of affiliate marketing in general.Which has changed to the better and it continues to.I believe , it is in out hands to keep moving into that direction.It will benefit everyone.
Now as concerns the sidebar , I can’t really give a thorough conclusion about the “time” as a metric , I need more measures and data.But I can really say that from the moment I changed this option and removed it I watched an increase on my Call-To-Action “Clicks”.Which I track them through Pretty-Link and I redirect visitors to other pages.
If you decide to make a test for your website I would be very interested in giving me an update of your findings.
Thank you once again for another visit and for your participation.
You have covered many important aspects of using affiliate links. I see some people overuse them and bombard their readers on most of the pages. As you said, it would be better to centralize the promotion into specific posts. This way will tell Google that we are giving the best user experience as supposed to direct the traffic outside for most posts. Search Engines also don’t like raw affiliate links because they contain ugly numbers and symbols. Using Pretty Link will definitely give a boost on rankings. And rankings = revenue ($$$). 🙂
Welcome back Edy , I really Do hate it when marketers overuse them.And generally I hate pop-up messages , especially those that contain affiliate links and of course other types of bombarding.When I come across a website that uses these techniques I press the (X) button.
Yes , this is our mission , the best user experience , besides we are users too when we visit other websites all the time.We don’t wanna be “Sold” , if the website provides value to us we will stay , we will revisit and then we may buy.
I am glad you agree on the raw affiliate links part too , they are ugly.
Thank you for another visit and for your meaningful participation.