Discussion: How do you feel about affiliate links?

Hello everyone! Today I want to talk about a (potentially?) touchy topic: AFFILIATE LINKS.

discussion posts

I signed up for the Amazon Associates program back in January. For the first six months, you’re on this trial period where you have to produce three legit sales before you’re officially an Associate.

Now, the reason I decided to go this route is because I’m trying to monetize my blog. I thought it would be awesome if I could make a little money doing something that I was already working on anyway. And especially now that I’ve transitioned into full-time stay-at-home mom status, it would be AMAZING if I could make a little extra money on the side. With that being said, in the almost six months that I’ve been doing this, I’ve produced about 20 sales netting me a whopping $2.86 (which I can’t even cash out, because there’s a $10 minimum).

That got me thinking about how affiliate links might be perceived by readers and other bloggers. I feel like sometimes there might be a perception that bloggers posting affiliate links are greedy? Or perhaps disingenuous? I’d honestly love to hear how you guys feel about affiliate links in the comments. Personally, I don’t mind using affiliate links if I was already planning on purchasing an item or if the post made me interested in an item. For example, I was researching sippy cups for my son to use and had no problem using a blog post’s affiliate links when making my purchase. But I’m not going around to random blogs and purchasing stuff from their links just for fun.

Here’s my policy for posting affiliate links

For general review/mini-review posts:

If I would recommend a book (generally 4 stars or higher) I’ll include links for all the different available formats. I don’t feel good about posting links for books that I didn’t particularly enjoy. That IS something that feels disingenuous to me. I only want you to buy it if I also enjoyed it. I’ve also decided to post links for all of the different formats because I don’t want my readers to feel like I’m pushing the most expensive format onto them so I can get the most kickback. That’s not my goal either.

For my “Best Book Deals” posts:

I get a ton of emails listing discounted eBooks, so I decided to compile some of those and post them on a weekly-ish basis to make things a little easier on you guys. Now, I certainly haven’t read every single book that I link, but I try to provide a really good variety. I’m mostly looking to post YA books and other adult/non-fiction books with titles, authors, or subjects that I think you guys might be interested in (I’m certainly NOT posting every single book deal that’s sent to me–that would be madness). Then, I have a section at the bottom of these posts highlighting the books that I recommend. The books in the “recommended” section are all books that I HAVE read and legitimately recommend.

For other posts:

I don’t have any hard and fast rules for other posts like I do for my reviews and book deals. If you look back in my archive, you’ll probably find a mixture of me inserting Amazon links and not.

I’d like to make a little more money with my links, but I’m not about to start linking to everything on Amazon just to try to get you guys to buy things.

But what do you guys think? Do you generally have a more positive or negative feeling towards affiliate links? Are you currently using them/have used them in the past? How did that go? Let me know in the comments!