You can make money off your blog’s content and existing links without barely lifting a finger. Perhaps you don’t feel like going back and adding affiliate links, maybe you want to be blind to any affiliate programs that do exist. Maybe you need an alternative to the Amazon Affiliate program or to Google Adsense. By signing up for a content monetization service and setting up a simple script on your blog you can start earning cash on the un-affiliated sales you drive. This is one of the easiest paychecks you can earn.
Skimlinks and VigLink are dead-simple in what they do – through a quick and easy script they automatically associate outgoing links with affiliate programs. You don’t need to find the programs, join them, be accepted, or even be eligible to operate them. You just need to sign up with either program, do a quick cut and paste to drop in your code, and you’re set. There’s an approval process with SkimLinks, it takes about 24 hours. VigLink has no wait time.
My Favorite Things about SkimLinks and VigLink
- You can use their URL shortening service to create shortened URLs to share on social media. Upload a photo and a shortened link to your Facebook Page and capture revenue without even having to send people to your blog.
- I often make commission on programs I had no idea even operated an affiliate program. Sometimes merchants I’ve worked with in the past start an affiliate program and I find out when I earn a commission this way.
- Higher Commissions. Period. I get higher commissions and longer tracking periods through affiliate link conversion services than through many of the programs I’m in. In a few cases where I need a good relationship with the merchant and the ability to show my sales to them I just negotiate a private offer through my regular affiliate network.
- For content publishers that don’t have a lot of affiliate programs that they can take advantage of (although I never really believe that), you can use SkimWords and VigLink Insert to convert relevant keywords into income generating flyovers.
- They are perfect for properties with significant communities: bulletin boards, heavy comment action, private social networks. You can monetize the links that users paste on your site.
- If your site relies on the editorial nature of your content and you don’t want to be seen using affiliate links, or creating affiliate links would take more time than you have, you can use these affiliate linking programs to solve those problems.
My Least Favorite Things about Making More Money
- …. Anyone who writes cons about these things, I have no idea what they are talking about. All the major publishers and sites use these services because they don’t use affiliate links. So should you. Stop leaving your profit on the table.
- Ok ok, I’ve had one issue with Skimlinks and a merchant with a private affiliate program and a ShareASale program. My links to their private program were tracked through ShareASale, and the merchant got a wee bit testy with me. All I did was notify SkimLinks to stop converting clicks for that merchant and it was resolved.
- VigLink and SkimLinks take 25% of the money you wouldn’t have earned if you didn’t use their service. 25% is a big cut, but it’s better than 10% of nothing.
Frankly, the use of link converting services has little downside. You need to test Skimlinks and VigLinks to determine which works best for your content, so sign up for both. This is not a question of which to sign up for. Test them, track them, determine which generates more profit, and do it every year. Both services offer a merchant lookup feature – if you have merchants that perform extremely well in your niche, you’ll want to look them up manually to see if they are offered on one or both networks.
Skimlinks and Viglink aren’t true adsense alternatives in that they aren’t display advertising. However, if you cannot use Adsense for whatever reason, you need to monetize your content a different way.