How To Get More Text Link Sales

Selling text links is one of this blog’s biggest money makers. Right now, all my link spots are completely sold out – you can’t buy a spot even if you’re willing to pay more than the $200 per month price. Here are some tips to increase your text link sales.

Put Your Links In A Highly Visible Place

It is not true that advertisers buy text links only for search engine benefits. Links are also good for traffic building. However, if you place the links at the bottom of the blog, or some other low visibility spot, the link advertisers won’t be receiving much traffic from it. You can assume that an advertiser will be checking out your blog to see where the links are placed before making a purchase. By making sure your paid links are above the fold and in a highly visible location, you increase your chances of getting a sale.

Call Your Sponsored Links Anything But Sponsored Links

Because most text links do not have a nofollow tag, they carry SEO benefits for the advertisers. However, Google doesn’t like it when advertisers pay for a link instead of earning it the old fashion way. The rumor is Google is working on ways to detect sponsored links and placing less trust on sites that sell them and sites that buy them. The problem for Google is how does it know if a link is sponsored or not?

It should be obvious that the easiest way to detect sponsored links is by looking for something that is labeled sponsored links. This is why my paid links are labeled featured sites. Calling your paid link section anything but sponsored links could get you more sales and will keep the Google dogs at bay (at least for now).

Seed The Links If You Have No Sales

Advertisers are like normal people – most like to follow and never want to be the first. When they see a site with no links on it, they are hesitant to buy. However, if they see a link or two, they’re much more likely to make a purchase. If you haven’t sold any links yet, the best thing for you to do is to sponsor your own links and put them in your paid link section. You can either link to me (use Make Money Online as the anchor text if you do) or some affiliate deal. You can see an example of this at Michael Kwan’s blog. His featured sites include a link to AGLOCO, Text Link Ads and PayPerPost. All are affiliate links. Showing a few “paid links” is much better than showing nothing. It’s evil but it works.

Sign Up For Text Link Ads

If you can sell your own links, that’s great. However, unless you’re a fairly decent size blog, your best chance of getting a link sale is by signing up with Text Link Ads. TLA will list your blog in their marketplace and exposes you to thousands of potential advertisers. Yes they will take a 50% cut of sales but it’s better to have 50% of something than 100% of nothing. Text Link Ads accounted for $1,308.06 of the blog’s March income.

51 thoughts on “How To Get More Text Link Sales”

  1. gabo_uy says:

    I haven’t had much luck with TLA’s, the problem was not so much selling links but getting along with G. For some reason one month after placing TLA’s my site stopped appearing in google’s results 🙁

    1. I can’t get approved for TLA – not even if my life depended on it 😕

      1. Dave says:

        Is your website brand new? You need to be fairly established to get TLA love.

        1. Maybe a friendly email from John will get him approved?

        2. Whats considered to be failry established?.. is there like a ranking or amount of traffic or something?

    2. Me too. TLA never bring any income to my site.
      But I’m going to apply John’s other ways.

      1. Matt Jones says:

        A couple of blogs I read arn’t happy with TLA, they can be too slow

  2. Ed Lau says:

    Also, if you haven’t already, update to the latest version of TLA plugin. Right after I updated to 3.0, two paid links popped up on my site.

  3. I think it’s also wise to check out who your advertisers are–by visiting their sites =P. If you have a competing site then you shouldn’t allow the advertiser to take your spot, even though it’s O.K. for SEO purpose, cuz the site is relevant to yours.

    Featured Sites, I think also scream ‘potential’ sponsored links, or why else they are ‘featured’ =P….

    1. John Chow says:

      I know what you mean but featured sites. I’m looking for something else to call it. Any idea? AoJon recommended I use “Great Sites” 😈

      1. SEO Mash says:

        How about “Content Partners”? Or if you are that worried about Google, just use an image rather than plain text that says “Featured Sites” or whatever.

        1. “Featured sites” sounds good; it endorses the links without going over-the-top.

          1. Ahana says:


      2. Court says:

        How about “Recommended by John”? Then it’s like you visit them yourself. I’m sure that you’ve been to all of them.

        1. Matthew says:

          If that was the case then it would currently read…

          Recommended By John
          FREE Male Enhancement

      3. Court says:

        You could maybe also change the div id so that it’s not “soldlinks”. Maybe they look for hints in the code?

      4. Maybe call it a ‘friend with benefits’ 😉

      5. Dave says:

        Call it “Content Network”

  4. To get maximum clicks, try “Additional Info” or “Resource Sites” 😈 :mrgreen:

  5. Phishie Diaz says:

    Great tips there. To get around the whole “sponsored links” title you could make it so that advertisers have to link to an article on their site. Then you can call it the “Featured Articles” or “Favorite Articles” section. Every blog features articles! So there, you’re safe now. hehe

  6. I was going to called it “Great Resources,” “Site of Interests” “Related Sites” “Interesting Sites”–but you have a ‘male enhancement’ (#1 spot 🙂 in the group, so the name of the group of your “Featured Sites” may not sound right :mrgreen: .

    *I would laugh pretty hard, if the first thing I see from “Great Resources” is a ‘Free Male Enhancement’ ;).

  7. How about “Site Supporters”


  8. blogdinero says:

    It´s not easy work with TLA, but thanks.

    1. John Chow says:

      What is hard about it?

      1. blogdinero says:

        Some times I think they play bad. in similar conditions

        Adsense get 65 clicks, real and valids
        and Textlinkads only 3

        what I´m doing bad?

      2. blogdinero says:

        Really the way to work to sell links is different and Adsense doens´t work so, but the way to get pay per click doesn´t work too efficient like Adsense.

  9. Miriguy says:

    I have changed the name sponsored links to featured sites. Thanks! 😈

  10. Marlo says:

    TLA is doing well on my blog. I’ve sold my entire inventory for the month. Initially “seeding” the list with links really does work.

    Question now is: how do you have TLA increase the sale price?

    1. John Chow says:

      You email them and ask them to increase your price. Tell them the price you want and they will change it for you.

  11. change it to related links!easy…or Interesting site.

  12. Call it “My Favorites.”

  13. moneymaker says:

    I had no luck with TLA. Blog/Site has to be very well know to get text sales..

  14. Kevin says:

    Good post John. I always try and put my text link ads on good positions. 4 of my sites have been sold out for months because of this. Its important to give them exposure as well as help in the search engines. :mrgreen:

  15. Ed Lau says:

    Thanks John for the Evil Affiliate link placed in the blog post :mrgreen:

  16. Bucky says:


    You need to form a partnership with TLA like you did with Kontera so some of us that cannot seem to get approved at all will have an opportunity. :mrgreen:

    1. Playing the cool-by-association card there, eh, Bucky. 😈

  17. Matthew says:

    I wasnt approved a few months back but was about a month ago. Currently 5 have sold which hasnt made loads, but it’s still an extra $40 or so.

  18. James says:

    There are a couple things that have to do with getting TLA advertisers. Alexa ranking and PR. I was accepted by TLA over 6 months ago (My blog has been PR 3 forever). It was not until my Alexa rank went up that I finally got an advertiser.
    I think the idea of seeding with other links is a good one.
    John, with Google encouraging people to rat out sites with paid links, I’m not sure it will help you at all to change the name. If you leave it as sponsored links, maybe those who would rat you out will think Google already knows.
    If you define spam as worthless or confusing, you pretty much identify anything Google states for webmasters to follow.

  19. Sara says:

    I don’t understand their approval system. I understand that my newest blog may be too new and not have enough traffic to be approved, but then why would an old blog that I haven’t updated in months be approved? Is it just based on traffic?


  20. Mike says:

    Well I’ve just labelled up mine as Featured Sites so if I get canned by Google, I know where to come 😉

    Incidentally, am I the only one to have noticed this result in Google?

    Get Featured Here

  21. Amanda says:

    I guess you are since It didn’t show up on the link for me?

  22. i gotta sign up for TLA soon.

  23. Matt Jones says:

    I STILL can’t get in because Google won’t update their ruddy Page rank! 😥

  24. should be a bit easier for some of us to get TLA now with the PR update eh?

  25. Cant believe you’re sold out for all of your text link spots… Man… I just want to get that kind of traffic power on my site. Keep up the great work!

    -Sam from

  26. luciano says:

    I am trying very slowly….!! 😳

    Thanks for a visit on my Blog!! Ciao 😆

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