Fashion Traffic School: Affiliate Marketing Tips From Bloggers
By: Taylor Davies

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This is the third in a series of four posts to help you monetize your blog using affiliate marketing, sponsored by Fashion Traffic. (Read the first posts here.) 

 

As with just about anything in this world of blogging (and often the broader world in general), you can’t get something for nothing.  This is something many of our parents probably tried to instill within us as kids, and it will always hold true. I find that this little saying is especially true when discussing how to build a successful and perhaps even lucrative blog.

 

Affiliate marketing can be a rewarding, lucrative method of monetization on your site, but the bottom line is that you’re going to have to work at it. A link here and there, a random tweet or two, those things aren’t going to earn money for you. Using an affiliate network to it’s fullest capability takes a bit more time, and a considerable amount of care and strategy. Be smart about how you use your links and where, how often you share them and which retailers you want to support.

 

To give you some real insight into using affiliate networks, IFB reached out to bloggers who are using them, to give you a first-hand account of their experience. As the author of these posts (and someone who uses an affiliate  network on their site), I thought it would only be fair to share my personal experience as well:

Taylor Sterling, Sterling Style and Glitter Guide

I have played around with different affiliate links for years. I have to admit they don’t always work. It’s not always about linking everything either. Sometimes you only need to link items you love or items that you think people would want to buy. I like it because I am an online shopper and when I look at sites I want to shop what inspires me and I don’t mind supporting the publisher. If they inspired me to buy something then I feel they deserve the credit. I think they are very effective when done right.

Jessie Artigue, Style & Pepper:

I share affiliate links that connect my readers to items I wear (or to something that is similar) in the notations of my outfit posts, and fully disclose this on the partnership page of my site.  However, I have made the conscious decision NOT to have affiliate ads (the ones that look like sponsorship buttons) on my site, because I feel it is HIGHLY unfair to the small, independent companies who purchase fee-based ad space on Style & Pepper.  Why should I let those larger retailers have valuable space on my site for just pennies, when there are brands out there willing to cultivate an actual relationship with me and support my content with various partnerships or monthly ads.  I would hate to make my valued sponsors feel as though they are being unfairly treated, and can imagine that it would even deter certain companies from reaching out to me in the first place.

My experience with my personal blog, shut up, i love that shirt on you:

I just started including affiliate links on some of my posts about six months ago. Right from the get-go I thought it was a creative and content-loyal way to monetize my personal style site. I do not include them in every post, and I rarely include affiliate links in tweets. The lack of serious effort on my part has not allowed me to fully actualize the potential of my affiliate network. It’s actually one of my 2012 blogging resolutions to dedicate myself to using affiliate marketing more thoroughly and thoughtfully on my site as well as my social networks. I know of many bloggers who have had great success with their efforts, and hope to emulate a little of that in the new year. This is a monetization method that takes time, dedication and effort – three of the most important ingredients when striving to succeed in any arena!

 

We have had such lively and informative conversations going in the comments for these posts each week, so let’s keep it up! Please share your tips, success stories and questions below!

 

Comments

  1. Tracy says:

    I am wondering what companies that offer affiliate advertising are looking for in a blog? I would love to make money through my blog, and am willing to work hard at it if there’s truly a return. If you have any tips, please share =)

    • Charlie says:

      Hi Tracy,

      I’d suggest you to use a tool like Zocko.com to monetize your blog using affiliate links without hassle.

      Hope it helps

  2. All great advice!

    I would also add one challenge that comes along with affiliate links. Sometimes the reader wants the product you´re promoting/linking in and yet doesn´t purchase it right away, instead bookmarks it. Then they purchase later. It´s okay if your cookie isn´t expired yet. But if they purchase passed the cookie days, it´s not counted anymore.

    In choosing the brands´affiliate program to join, the cookie duration is one of the things I put into consideration. :)

  3. I use affiliate links via Reward Style, but I admittedly hardly use the service since most og my outfit posts feature secondhand clothing (I’m a manager of a secondhand store). I’m going to try to get better about that in 2012 though and incorporate the affiliate links in posts wherever I can.

  4. “This is a monetization method that takes time, dedication and effort – three of the most important ingredients when striving to succeed in any arena!” I absolutely agree with this. But above all this, you gotta decide and discipline yourself to really do it. Or else, everything else will just be the same.

  5. Wendy Brown says:

    As a retailer/boutique owner I am curious to know which affiliate program offers the best support, pay-outs & customer service from a blogger’s point of view? We are implementing our affiliate marketing program for our website early 2012. I have read mixed reviews for CJ, I’ve heard Shareasale is great to work with but I am considering Has Offers?

    Thanks in advanced for the feedback.

  6. I’m all for affiliate marketing. I get almost all my inspiration from other bloggers and if they’re wearing something I want, then they should get credit for the purchase.

  7. Marissa says:

    The bloggers who were interviewed about affiliates (at least Taylor and Jessie) in this article do not even use Fashion Traffic- they use rewardStyle. Misleading placement.

    • Avatar of taylordavies
      taylordavies says:

      Hi Marissa – our goal with speaking about affiliate marketing networks is to help people make a choice about whether or not joining one will benefit their blog – no matter which one they might choose to use. Sorry if you found this misleading, we’re only trying to provide insight as best we can. Thanks!

  8. Ari says:

    My problem is that I for some reason can not get approved for rewardStyle. I have accounts with other affliate programs but just can’t seem to get this one. (Hey I’m being honest & I don’t think that makes me any less of a fashion blogger since I don’t have an account with rewardStyle)

    However I feel that rewardStyle is the preferred choice for affliate links. What is the best program besides rewardStyle? or any tips for getting them to change their mind about me?

  9. Mikkel says:

    Our company look into using affiliate as a sales channel – currently we are looking in to these networks:
    Commissionjunction.com
    Fashiontraffic.com
    rewardstyle.com

    But is there any other good affiliate networks with focus on high end fashion clothes?

What do you think?