Fashion Traffic School: Create Content Readers Will Love & Buy

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

Okay, so last week we broke down the basics of affiliate network marketing. Many of you left very thoughtful, well-written and interesting comments. Opinions are certainly divided on the pros and cons of this kind of monetization, but we feel like it's most important for IFB to provide you with as much information as we can, and it's up to you individually to decide if it's right for you!

One of the keys to having success with affiliate links is to make sure that they're seamlessly (or nearly so) integrated with your usual content. Links and images should serve to bolster your content and dually benefit you and your readers by connecting them to your favorite products.

Here are some tips for the easiest and most genuine ways to use affiliate links on your blog:

Outfit posts that are shopped out with links & images:

This has to be the most obvious way to use affiliate links on your blog, but it's worth explaining. Followers who want to emulate your style or who love a particular piece you are wearing would love to have an easy way to find that piece online and purchase it for themselves. Below the first photo of your full look, list each item you're wearing (brand included). Search your affiliate network's site for those items (or something similar) and add the hyperlink to your text. (Just be sure to indicate if your link isn't for the exact item.)


Why this works: Before I started using affiliate links on my personal blog, I would provide links to items I was wearing that lead directly to their respective e-commerce sites. Did my readers click on them and make purchases? I have no idea. But I wanted to make sure that if they liked something, I could provide a helpful link. Using an affiliate link is essentially doing the same thing, except that if one of my readers purchases a pair of shoes or a dress I'm wearing, I get a commission. Without an affiliate network, these links were essentially free advertising. Does this guarantee that people will start clicking like crazy and purchasing everything you wear, making you thousands of dollars? Of course not. But you might as well give yourself the ability to earn some money through links.

Make shopping stories around colors, trends, events, travel: 

Another easy way to embed affiliate links and images into your usual blog posts is through shopping stories. We all use these kinds of posts to talk about trends, suggest looks for events, or create haul lists to show what we've purchased lately. These kinds of posts can inspire purchases from your readers in the same way an outfit post can.

Honest & thoughtful placements:

What you don't want to do is go absolutely wild with the links and placements, seemingly out of nowhere once you've joined an affiliate network. Your readers will be confused at best, and completely turned off at worst. Let's be clear, you're not trying to trick them by sneaking in little commissions here and there, you're providing links that are mutually beneficial.

What's important to remember is that content is king, always! Don't try to force yourself to place links or images that don't feel right, that don't work with your aesthetic, or anything you wouldn't purchase yourself. I'm guessing you started your blog because you wanted to share your unique take on fashion, not whatever vision would make you a bunch of money. When you find the happy meeting of your genuine taste and an affiliate link – that's where you'll find the most opportunity to monetize.

Twitter & Facebook:

Social media is another quick and easy way to share affiliate links. Perhaps you  saw something while browsing online but don't have the time to create an entire post that includes it, you can easily post it in a tweet or status update from your Facebook fan page. Because space and characters are limited in these mediums, it can be tempting to slap-dash something together, but try your best to maintain a genuine voice.

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5 Responses

  1. creativefashionglee

    Great advice! However, that last tip about sharing affiliate links in social media such as Twitter is misleading! It´s okay to post affiliate links on your Facebook fanpage but not in Twitter. It´s a BIG violation! Unless you want your twitter account to get suspended or terminated, don´t do it.

    I had no idea that it was a violation of Twitter´s terms and service before. I had my fb fanpage automated with Twitter. I was posting affiliate links on my Facebook page and it´s tweeted directly on my Twitter account. I woke up one morning to a suspended account. After almost a month of appealing for the restoration of my account, which took me more than a couple of emails pleading, only then I learned that it was my affiliate links that caused the suspension. I was advised by Twitter team to remove any automation which I installed for my Twitter, and I did.

    So please, be well-informed and correct that last tip.

    • Jennine Jacob

      Hi there,

      Thanks for sharing your experience, it sounds like a complete nightmare! I couldn’t find any new articles about this nor could I locate it in the terms… do you think you can help with that? Sorry, but I need to confirm this.

      From what I can tell, it’s ok if you post affiliates, you just can’t use a third party service to do it (ie. the automated facebook posting to twitter) or using a link shortener to mask the affiliate. I could be wrong, but that’s what I could make out of the information that’s out there. In the Twitter rules there is nothing outright saying they do not allow affiliates.