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London-based affiliate marketing network Skimlinks is out with what it says is the first automated affiliate link platform for AMP.

AMP, or Accelerated Mobile Pages, is an open-source initiative from Google that creates stripped-down HTML pages, so they will load more quickly on mobile devices than regular mobile web pages.

Previously, manual construction. A publisher’s AMP pages previously could contain money-making affiliate links, Skimlinks VP of Marketing Jean-Christophe Gombeaud said in an interview, but they had to be manually constructed in order for the publisher to earn a referral fee.

In other words, a publisher’s AMP page could contain a brief review of a new camera, as well as a link to a retailer selling that camera. But, if the publisher wanted to receive a referral fee when a reader clicked that link and bought the camera — assuming the retailer participated in an affiliate program — then a tag would have to be manually inserted on the link.

Automated referral fees. Now, Skimlinks’ new AMP offering lets a publisher add a JavaScript tag in the AMP’s HTML header, and that tag will automatically give a referral fee to the publisher for purchases made through that link, from participating retailers. For publishers with many pages containing links to retailers, this can be a time saver.

The Skimlinks platform provides access to more than 60 affiliate networks and to about 27,000 retailers worldwide, which Skimlinks said generated over a billion dollars in e-commerce transactions in 2017.

Gombeaud said about 30 AMP publishers have participated in the AMP pilot, including Newsweek,, New York Media and Refinery 29, and they receive the same financial split structure as do the publishers working with Skimlinks’ affiliate links for regular websites.

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Why you should care. Skimlinks says that nearly 60 percent of all impressions and a third of the revenue in its network are now from mobile devices.

With the pared-down AMP gaining ground as a fast-loading way to boost users’ experience on mobile devices, publishers have to similarly pare down their revenue-generating components, such as the number and kinds of ads. Affiliate links, being lightweight HTML, don’t add any significant load time to the AMP page, and an automated way of handling them could help publishers in the increasingly mobile world.

This story first appeared on MarTech Today. For more on marketing technology, click here.


About The Author

Barry Levine covers marketing technology for Third Door Media. Previously, he covered this space as a Senior Writer for VentureBeat, and he has written about these and other tech subjects for such publications as CMSWire and NewsFactor. He founded and led the web site/unit at PBS station Thirteen/WNET; worked as an online Senior Producer/writer for Viacom; created a successful interactive game, PLAY IT BY EAR: The First CD Game; founded and led an independent film showcase, CENTER SCREEN, based at Harvard and M.I.T.; and served over five years as a consultant to the M.I.T. Media Lab. You can find him at LinkedIn, and on Twitter at xBarryLevine.

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