Hot on HuffPost Tech:

See More Stories
Free Switched iPhone app - try it now!
AOL Tech

Google makes it easier to monetize blogs with Amazon integration

Amazon blogger
Google owns the popular Blogger service that lets anyone create and start publishing a blog in a few minutes. Google also owns the popular web-based advertising system, AdSense. So it's hardly surprising that Blogger has a "Monetize" tab that makes it easy for users to sign up for an AdSense account and start running ads on their web pages. What's a bit more surprising is that this week Google rolled out a new monetization option making it incredibly easy for users to post affiliate links to Amazon on their blogs.

Once the service is enabled, you can either create a new Amazon Associate account or link an existing account. Then when you go to write a blog post, an Amazon box will appear on the right side of the screen. You can find items on Amazon using the search box, and add them to your blog posts with a single click. You can choose to add just a text-based link, a product image, or a link + product image.

This is going to make it way easier for Blogger users to post affiliate links in their posts, and so there's a pretty good chance we're going to start seeing an explosion of Amazon links on Blogspot sites. If you're worried this is going to lead to an explosion of irrelevant, spammy links, Google is way ahead of you. The blog post announcing the new program points out that "affiliate programs work well when readers trust you," and suggests users avoid posting items simply for the affiliate fees, lest their blogs start to look like they only exist to make money for the author.

In other words, if you review a book, you might want to post a purchase link. If there's a good deal on a product in the niche that you cover, post a link. On the other hand, if you run a somewhat popular blog about marine biology, you might want to hold off on posting affiliate links to purchase HDTVs and baby strollers. Readers aren't going to click them, and if they keep seeing them, odds are they're going to stop visiting your site altogether.

[via ProBlogger]

Tags: affiliate links, AffiliateLinks, amazon, amazon associates, AmazonAssociates, blogger, blogging, blogspot