Earning Money with Viglink
However, You Still Have Options
When you use Viglink on a site, you have the option of switching off the automatic linking components for Amazon and eBay. That means Viglink will stay away from your existing links leading out to these networks.
But it will still automatically insert other links, such as you if mention a specific product or the name of a specific retailer, such as Target or Wal-Mart.
You can also control how aggressive Viglink will be with inserting links, by choosing a "fewer links" option. Or, you can set it at maximum "full revenue" strength.
Links are Inserted Automatically
Some online writers work solely to create articles. They love to see their thoughts in print, and this, alone is their reward. Most of us, though, are trying to earn a living.
Fortunately, as the Internet continues to expand, there are more income opportunities than ever. The trick is finding the ones that work best.
Viglink is a relatively new enterprise that will automatically turn your outgoing links into potentially profitable ones. You can also use it to manage your Amazon and eBay links. Although you can also deal directly with these networks, not everyone can easily obtain an eBay affiliate account. With certain other revenue-share platforms, Viglink is the back door that lets you earn from eBay, once you are approved.
If you'd like to sell products from other major retailers, such as Walmart, Target and Home Depot, Viglink also has agreements with these merchants, as well as an additional 30,000 other ones.
Once you sign up with Viglink, you don't have to apply to each of these retailers separately. If your site is new and it has little traffic, your application could get rejected by these merchants. You can usually get around this problem with Viglink. (However, there are some notable exceptions you should be aware of. There is a separate Viglink approval process for Amazon and eBay.)
How Viglink Works
All you do is add Viglink somewhere on your settings page, test it to make sure it's properly installed, and the linking happens automatically.
If you have a blog, or your own website, you'll need to insert a code somewhere. You'll also need to provide disclosures, in a visible place, that outgoing links are part of the Viglink affiliate program.
One very attractive feature is that Viglink can spot something in your text that can be turned into a money-making opportunity. The system isn't perfect, but it does work. Say, for instance, you mention a certain popular electronic product in your article. But you forget to include a link that directs readers to where it can be purchased. Viglink will often insert a text link for you.
Here is one incident I think is slightly comical. In one of my articles, I mentioned the Amazon River. Viglink quickly turned the word "Amazon" into a hyperlink. If someone clicks and orders something from the online retail giant, I'll get a commission.
However, to be certain a product link is affiliated, you'll probably want to add it yourself. It's also better to include a clickable image, or an affiliate text link, and this is something you must do manually.
Some people are also successfully using Viglink to monetize social media posts, although I've never done this. But one can only imagine the possibilities.
Your Experience with Viglink
Do You Use Viglink to Affiliate Your Outgoing Links?
So, What's in it for Viglink?
Viglink manages your outgoing links, but also typically takes 25 percent of your earnings. However, some publishers believe this cut is well worth it because of the additional linkage opportunities, and the ability to work, indirectly, with a wider network of merchants. On one of the sites where I use Viglink, I managed to use the word "Amazon" (referring to the retailer) in a comment on one of the forums. Sure enough, within seconds, a hyperlink was created.
At one time, the commission earned on Amazon sales was a little higher than what you could earn independently. So, even with 75 percent of your regular commission, you still made more if you sold a relatively small number of items each month. However, I'm not sure this is still the case, because, as I understand it, the Viglink commission structure has recently changed.
If you sign up for Viglink, approval for Amazon is not automatic. Don't assume your Amazon links will automatically affiliate unless you check your account. To do this, go to your dashboard. Then click on the "tools" tab. You will then go to the Merchant Explorer page. Search to see if you are approved for Amazon. If you see a gray box that says "restricted," it means you are not approved.
My Earlier Frustration With Viglink
At one time, I had a love/hate relationship with Viglink. That's because I had a difficult time using it on one of my revenue-share platforms. I wasn't sure if it was working properly. I also wasn't sure I had correctly installed it on my blogs. I didn't know what to think of this network, so I removed it from these sites. Part of the problem was that I already had a lot of outgoing links, and it became confusing.
Then, it was announced that Viglink was available on Seekyt. I had very few articles, and no affiliate links yet on this newly redesigned platform. So this was the perfect opportunity to see if Viglink really worked.
The Seekyt site owner walked me through the steps, again and again. Finally, in my Viglink dashboard I saw a click, the first obvious evidence that Viglink, indeed, was taking care of my outbound links.
Perhaps the biggest drawback to using Viglink is that it can be a bit tricky to set up. You should test it to make sure it's working (instructions are available on your dashboard) and make sure the setting on each particular campaign is turned to "On."
Can You Use Viglink on Hub Pages?
Viglink cannot be used on Hub Pages. However, I don't consider this a drawback because it's important for online writers to diversify, as much as possible. At this point, I don't want to use any single system to consolidate my earnings, because it's too risky, as many unfortunate Squidoo writers found out when the site experienced a massive decline in traffic last year, a factor that undoubtedly led to the closing of the site. Some people were earning thousands of dollars a month there, so they suffered greatly.
I'm also not sure I'd want to use Viglink, or any one affiliate network, as my primary income stream, although many successful publishers do use it exclusively.
Skimlinks is another large network similar to Viglink. However, I have no personal experience with Skimlinks.
Who is the Brains Behind Viglink?
Viglink, based in San Francisco, was founded by a man named Oliver Roup. Although, as of early 2104, the company is only five years old, it now is being used on more than 5 billion individual Internet pages every month, according to Wikipedia.
The young company has also attracted some big-name investors, such as Google Ventures and First Round Capital.
Viglink Versus Competitor Skimlinks
VigLink vs SkimLinks comparison.
I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.