Since you are going to be using free blogging service it’s important that you never directly link to an affiliate offer, especially with blogger. I had a blog deleted because I posted a direct link to an affiliate offer from PDC. It’s not a secret now that Google hates affiliates, so be careful.
So the first thing to do is to cloak your affiliate link. There are url shortening services that you can use, such as tinyurl.com and bit.ly. There are also some products on clickbank that offer cloaked urls that you can use directly.
So … no direct linking on blogger.
With that settled we can expand on strategic positions to place your affiliate link, and how to present it.
First of all the side bar is one place you must place your affiliate link, anchored by a picture of the product and/or text, above the fold. Above the fold is the part of the blog that shows for the visitor without having to scroll down.
Another strategic placement of the affiliate link in text is at the end of relevant posts, like the example we used to explain the pitch post in the last article.
Another placement that’s been less effective for me is within the post itself. For example, if your post is about a software that spies on other users you might want to link to the product with your cloaked affiliate link anchored to the text “spy on your spouse’s computer behavior”.
The first two positions are the best in terms of conversion, the last one never got me real money, so I don’t recommend it.
There is a different non-conventional placement, which is a full page ad that covers your website. It works, but there are two downsides:
1. The software is not free, if you can code it yourself go ahead, but if you can’t then you have to buy it.
2. You need tons of traffic to your site in order to split test different offers, weed out the losers and focus on the winners.
This type of advertising is tricky. From a research paper published by a team in University of Toronto last summer, the interruption aggressive advertising works best when the ad content are totally different from the website content, as opposed to the normal on site placement that should be relevant to the website content in order to be effective.
So .. go ahead, cloak your affiliate urls and post them on the side bar and after the relevant posts.
The rest of the series will focus on how to send free traffic to your free blog so that you start making some money.