Are you promoting affiliate links on your blog? Are you sure you’re doing it legally? Are you including an affiliate link disclosure in each post?
If so, is it written correctly? Do you know the right way to disclose affiliate links on social media?
It’s important to know for sure that you’re complying with FTC regulations. You need to know 100 percent that your affiliate marketing disclaimers and disclosures are accurate. If not, you could get slapped with legal fines.
I’m going to go over how to add them in posts, social media, YouTube, and Amazon. If you’re a new blogger and totally confused, I got you covered!
*Disclaimer: Keep in mind that this blog post is intended as a general resource only. It does constitute legal advice. I am not a lawyer. I do not claim to have expertise in this area. This blog post is based on personal opinions and research.
*Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. Please see my full disclosure for further information.
Do you legally have to disclose affiliate links?
Yes, you’re required by law to do so. The FTC is the one that enforces this law. Yes, you have to disclose your affiliate links on social media too. The FTC has an infographic about the dos and don’ts of affiliate link disclosures for social media influencers.
Do bloggers have to disclose affiliate links?
Yes, they do. Anyone who promotes affiliate links must let their audience know that it’s an affiliate link.
This will help you build trust with your readers. They need a clear picture so they know whether to trust your recommendation or not.
Do you get confused by all the legal stuff for your blog? Take this free legal course for bloggers!
RELATED POST: 10 Ways to Make Money as a Beginner Blogger
What’s the difference between a disclaimer and a disclosure?
What’s an affiliate disclaimer?
A disclaimer for affiliate links isn’t the same as an affiliate link disclosure. They both serve different purposes.
According to Website Policies, a disclaimer limits your liability for the content you publish on your blog and the outcome of the activities available on your website.
It lets readers know that you can’t guarantee results. They’ll know that you aren’t responsible for products or services you didn’t create.
If you don’t have a legal disclaimer yet then I recommend this disclaimer legal template. It’s written by a real lawyer. You can use it as a disclaimer for your blog.
What’s a disclosure for affiliate links?
An affiliate link disclosure is a statement you put in every blog post you write. It lets readers know that your blog post contains affiliate links.
Or that you were paid to write the post. It lets them know of your relationship with different companies or brands.
In fact, the FTC requires that you place your affiliate disclosure before your affiliate links. So, if you add an affiliate link in your introduction paragraph, you must add your affiliate link disclosure statement before it.
To read more about the FTC’s guidelines click here.
You don’t have to write it yourself. I actually recommend that you don’t. I recommend that you get an affiliate link disclosure template.
This is the affiliate disclosure template I use. It’s written by an actual lawyer. It’s fully compliant with FTC guidelines. It’s completely plug-and-play.
Related post: 10 of the Biggest Blogging Myths Debunked
How to add an Amazon affiliate link disclosure
Members of the Amazon Associates program have to disclose their links differently. When you’re promoting Amazon links on social media, you can use the terms (paid link), #ad, or #commissionsearned.
It should be near the affiliate link. The disclosure needs to be easy to see.
On top of that Amazon wants you to add this statement somewhere on your social media account, “as an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.”
If you’re promoting Amazon links on your blog, they want the same statement to be somewhere on your blog. In blog posts they want you to add a legally compliant disclosure. You can read Amazon’s operating agreement here.
How to add an affiliate link disclosure on social media
You must disclose affiliate links on social media. The FTC states that you have to disclose when you have a financial, employment, personal, or family relationship with the brand. Even if a brand gives you a product for free and you mention it, you must make a disclosure.
To disclose free products, say, “Thank you to (insert company name) for the free product,”. For Twitter, the FTC states that you can even use the terms (insert brand name) partner, or (insert brand name) ambassador as a disclosure.
However, if you have no brand relationship, and you happen to like a product then you don’t have to disclose it. Then how do you disclose affiliate links on social media?
On all social media platforms using #ad or #sponsored. The FTC doesn’t want you to use #aff or #spon.
The reason is consumers might not know what they mean. Honestly, consumers might not even understand #affiliatelink. Just use #ad or #sponsored to be safe.
How to add an affiliate link disclosure on Pinterest
Adding an affiliate link disclosure on Pinterest isn’t hard. All you have to do is add #ad in the pin description. Some bloggers just write a full affiliate disclosure in the description.
For idea pins put #ad on the image itself. If you’re doing a video mention that it contains affiliate links.
How to add affiliate link disclosure on Instagram
If a brand pays you to create a reel, video, or post for the Instagram feed you must disclose that it’s sponsored. Use #sponsored after your caption so it’s more noticeable. The FTC doesn’t want it mixed in with other hashtags.
When doing a video on IG, even reels, you must disclose in the video itself too. If you want more information on how to disclose sponsored posts on Instagram. read this detailed guide from Later.
If you’re promoting affiliate links in the feed use #ad after the caption. When it comes to Instagram stories the FTC does want you to disclose there too. Just use the text option to write #ad or ad over your image. But it has to be noticeable.
How to add affiliate link disclosure on YouTube
If your video features products you’re an affiliate for must add an affiliate link disclosure. In the video, you can add it verbally. If you’re adding affiliate links in the description, add a disclosure for affiliate links. It’s going to be similar to the one you use for blog posts.
But instead of writing this post, you’ll write this video or description containing affiliate links. Another way to get around is with the paid promotion box.
To do this sign into YouTube Studio on your PC. From the left select content. Click the video you’d like to edit. Select more options. Check the box next to “my video contains paid promotion like a product placement, sponsorship or endorsement.” Then save.
I hope this helps you to properly add an affiliate link disclosure to your blog. If you’re still not sure how to write one I recommend this affiliate link disclosure template.
Disclaimers and affiliate disclosures are not the same things. They protect your blog legally in different ways. Always make sure you legally promote your affiliate links.