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Affiliate link on home page?

+3 votes
Right now my home page for one site doesn't have any monetization outside of adsense in the sidebar. It set up more for getting people to explore inner pages and posts, do you think I should add some affiliate links to monetize it? If so will that harm my rank?
asked Sep 4, 2013 in Affiliate Marketing by blackcat (19,040 points)  
62% Accept Rate

5 Answers

0 votes
Best answer
Assuming it's a reputable affiliate - I would have a link on the home.

Having a single link is unlikely to affect rankings.

The pages (and sites) that seem to get affected the most are thin content sites that don't do anything but post affiliate links.

This doesn't mean they are bad sites.

But it does mean that they likely don't meet Google's search requirement. And instead is a strong indicator that they are affiliate only intent. And those Sites Google has indicated they would rather see traffic driven directly via advertising. Either Ad Words or something else.

Instead I would ask myself - why is Ad Sense on the page - if my real money is in the affiliate. If the money is in the affiliate - I would optimize to get clicks to the affiliate.

Let's use an example:

Let's say you are in the golf niche. And you have discovered this great affiliate program for selling a new golf training video series that shows how anyone in 10 minutes can reduce their slices by 50%. And it pays a $50 commission. I would setup a site that is very small (2-5 pages of content plus the general stuff you need for disclosure, privacy policy, etc) that highlighted the benefits of the series. And make sure the site has various clear calls to action (e.g. buttons, links that explicitly say "Click Here to Get the Series"). And my traffic strategy would be focused on paid promotion (Ad Words, Facebook, etc) that drove targeted (e.g. people more likely to be interested in the site) and SERPS would be a nice benefit. And no other ads on this site except for links to the affiliate page. We don't talk about paid promotion much but the math works as long as you can spend $1 and get $2 back (the golden rule from Perry Marshall's ad words book).

On the other hand if you're looking to setup an actual blog and you are going to let SERPS be the primary traffic gen and affiliate links are just another way to monetize the blog - then having a link on the homepage probably won't have much effect.
answered Sep 4, 2013 by markew14 (1,020 points)  
selected Nov 22, 2013 by blackcat
+2 votes
It sounds like your Home page is a static page, as opposed to a list of your most recent posts. You said that your Home page is meant to help people get to inner pages of your site. Would adding affiliate links make sense  on the Home page? If you do, you do risk sending people away from your site sooner than they would if they dug deeper into your site, which might hurt your site's bounce rate.

That being said, if there is enough good content on your site, it won't really matter if there is an affiliate link or two on your Home page, since those pages will bring search engine traffic directly to them, instead of people navigating to them from your Home page.
answered Sep 4, 2013 by Neeznoodle (510 points)  
Yeah its static. And yes, it only makes up for a little over half my total traffic. Right now my bounce rate is around 40%, I'm kinda nervous about that going up, butt it would be nice to see more conversions
0 votes
I think you can have one affiliate link in home page without huge impact (except it'll increase your bounce rate).

If you don't wanna increase your bounce rate, so it's better don't change it!

And you can use more Adsense blocks in internal pages, instead only one, but as markew14 said, you should ask yourself: is having Adsense ads worth to me?
answered Sep 21, 2013 by Christiano (49,030 points)  
0 votes
Yes I would provide an affiliate link on the home page.

If you review the product your link could be "Learn more about xxx".

That way you are looking to educate rather than sell.


John Hayes
answered Sep 22, 2013 by johnboyhayes (14,220 points)  
0 votes
Adding an affiliate link or two is unlikely going to hurt your ranking.

Anyway, it seems like you want people to stay on your site longer. If that is the case, why not remove the adsense in the side bar too? You can also consider adding a relevant video to your home page if you can find one.
answered Oct 13, 2013 by lubanolim (35,720 points)  
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