Gift guides are an AWESOME way to drive affiliate sales during the holiday season (they also do really well on Pinterest!), and they are easy to set up! Here are some tips for creating the perfect gift guide. You can use different affiliate sites, but if you belong to Amazon Associates, this is the perfect place to use them.
People do a TON of online shopping and since Amazon has everything under the sun, there’s a good chance you will get a sale through your link. The reader doesn’t have to order the exact item you link to, in fact, you get credit for anything they order during their shopping trip (cookies last 24 hours)!
- Choose a theme for your gift guide. Opt for a niche for your gift guide. For example, if you’re a fitness blogger, you might do a gift guide for the active woman in your life or something similar. Getting specific helps you attract the right reader who is likely to buy from your guide. It also helps you stand out from the rest of the crowd!
- Make a list of about 10 items and explain why you chose these items. Talk about things you love (if you’ve used the product/service) or if not, why you think it would make the perfect gift. If you have a coupon code to share, make sure to include that too!
- Use quality images. Compelling visuals are crucial to getting readers to buy through your gift guide– it’s similar to print media in this sense! If you see a beautiful image, it grabs your attention and makes you more likely to open your wallet. I like to use Canva to create my gift guide photo layouts. Just use the poster layout and upload images from your affiliate site. You can hyperlink to them using the link icon in the upper right-hand corner. You want to make sure you are using poster format, so it will be saved as a pdf and show links! It’s also a good idea to add a number next to the item and includes a numbered list with full names of items and hyperlinks in your blog post.
- Create graphics to share the gift guide on each of your social media platforms.After you’ve spent the work on your gift guide, you want to make sure that everyone sees (and shares!) it! As I mentioned above, Pinterest is a great platform to start circulating your gift guide!
- Use Pretty Links. Affiliate links can be long and very unattractive. The Pretty Links plugin for WordPress streamlines your links and makes them look as though they are coming from your own domain. For example, since I use and love Bluchic themes and I recommend them to a lot of clients, I created a special link http://www.30somethingmotherrunner.com/bluchic rather than using this url https://transactions.sendowl.com/stores/5566/45754. Which one would you be more likely to click on?
- Create a call to action (CTA) at the end of your blog post. For example, ask your reader to share your gift guide on Facebook. You’d be surprised how many people will do it if you just ask!
- Make sure you disclose your affiliate relationships! In order to be compliant with FTC regulations, you need to disclose your affiliate relationships before sharing the links with your readers. Sample disclosure language might be “Some of the links in this post are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission (with no additional cost to you). Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.”
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