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The Business of Blogging: Making Money with Affiliate Programs

The Business of Blogging
Welcome to our series of posts on the business of blogging! Each Thursday for 6 weeks, we'll debut a new post designed to help you build, market, and successfully create a small business with your Typepad blog. Let's get started!

Affliate programs offer one of the easiest ways to make money with your blog - sign up with a service, apply for some affliates you like, and place their links on your blog. When someone clicks through your link and makes a purchase, you'll get a commission. The details depend on the program and the particular affiliate, of course.

Affiliate programs might be a good fit for your blog if you write a particular topic or have a small but devoted and passionate audience that trusts your opinion. They're great if you do product reviews and would like a little kickback for promoting a business or service.

There are a whole bunch of affiliate programs to look into, including:

Some affiliate services are geared toward specific topics - look for one that best matches what you enjoy writing about.

Once you've found a program you like, you can add links into your posts using the code provided by the program. Many affiliates also offer banner ads that you can place in your blog's sidebar. Just follow our simple steps for adding code to your sidebar to add those banners to your blog.

Finally, here are some tips for successfull affiliate marketing:

  • People are more likely to shop online with stores they know and trust. Keep this in mind when looking for the right source for an item you're promoting.
  • Some affiliate programs offer major incentives to get you to promote their products but that doesn't mean it's always the right program for your blog. If you write about car parts, you won't make much money off a banner ad for shoes, for example. Keep it simple and targeted.
  • Start small. You may be tempted to go on a spree and sign up for a dozen programs and place as many ads on your blog as you can. This can be off-putting for established readers of your content and turn away new readers. Pick a few products you really stand behind and promote those. This will keep your reputation and readership in tact.

Do you have a favorite affiliate program or tips for working with affiliates? Share it with the Typepad community in the comments for this post.