If you are a blogger or a website owner looking to monetize your content, there is certainly no shortage of ways to do so.
The internet is flooded with various affiliate marketing programs that can help increase revenue; however, as anyone that has taken the time to sign up for dozens of programs will know, it is often a lot of work for little reward.
Enter Skimlinks, a kind of super-affiliate network that aims to simplify how you make money for your website.
Having been established since 2008, Skimlinks is still a relatively new name in affiliate marketing, but the program has grown immensely in the last couple of years, collecting industry awards from New Age Media, Smarta100 and a4uAwards, and earning a stellar reputation as a service that makes marketing quick and simple.
Based in the United Kingdom, Skimlinks is essentially a one-stop affiliate marketing solution that does the hard work for you, signing you up to literally hundreds of affiliate programs. Each product link added to your site from the vast list of Skimlinks merchants automatically becomes an affiliate link. You will then be paid for all of these different affiliate earnings through Skimlinks directly.
It is certainly an attractive service, but this is affiliate marketing and there is always two sides to the coin. Like many other programs, Skimlinks has both positive and negative aspects, but let’s start by looking at the good stuff.
Skimlinks has many positives that makes it a much better option that setting out to create your own affiliate links:
- No need to sign up with various affiliate networks – Signing up with different affiliate programs can take hours, if not days – time that most website owners simply do not have available.
- Links are in one place – Having all your affiliate links with Skimlinks means only needing to use one reporting system rather that dozens.
- No need to convert product links into affiliate links – another great time saving aspect of the service is the ability to use the Skimwords feature.
- Being paid from a single network – Instead of having to wait for earnings to accrue to achieve a minimum payout from dozens of different networks, Skimlinks sees that all payments are bundled nicely into one.
- Access to numerous affiliate networks – Skimlinks provides access to networks that you aren’t currently a member of – including big names such as eBay and Amazon(SkimLinks is a great alternative for people living in places that don’t allow making money as an Amazon Associate).
- WordPress friendly because of its WP plugin that installs all the js code needed without having to edit any files yourself.
Skimlinks is most certainly not without its drawbacks and users will need to be aware of what these are:
- You will lose some commissions – Skimlinks take part of all commissions, which can be up to 25% with some merchants.
- You need to be accepted – Skimlinks reviews every site before accepting it, so you’ll need to make sure yours is decent.
- Not suited to every niche – Skimlinks works best with technology, consumer electronics, fashion, lifestyle, beauty and automotive sites – if your site is outside of these niches, the service might not be effective.
The payout amount will be of obvious interest to anyone considering using Skimlinks. Fortunately, the service has a low minimum threshold at $10 (£7) NET60. What NET60 means is that you will be paid 60 days after the close of a period; for example, earnings in July would be paid in October.
Payments are made via PayPal, Direct Deposit or check.
It has to be said that when it comes to linking merchant sites with affiliate links, there is no service better than Skimlinks. The company has relationships with over 18,000 merchants on 33 different networks and ‘preferred partner’ status with many. This enables them to get the commission rates that the likes of you and I could only dream of.
Names on the merchants list include Macys, Zappos, Walmart, eBay and Amazon.
The signing up process is very straightforward, you simply need to fill out a one-page application form including website details and wait for Skimlinks to assess your site and inform you of approval. Skimlinks aim to review each site within three days of application submission.
Installation is also easy, and users of WordPress, vBulletin and Ning will have the option of installation plugins.
While it has its downsides, the benefits of Skimlinks certainly make it worthy of serious consideration therefore I would definitely recommend giving it a try.