Blogging & Social Media

Ways You Can Support Your Favorite Bloggers

I get a lot of questions from readers about how they can help support my business… If they comment on my blog posts, does it help me out in any way? If they click on one of my links and then click around, does it still count? If they comment too much on my Facebook Page, do they look like stalkers? (LOL!)

After fielding several of those types of questions in the comment section, I started thinking about writing this post, but I always chickened out because it feels so self-serving… as if posting pictures of myself all over the interwebs isn’t self-serving enough!

Finally I decided to ask you all outright if you would like a post like this, and quite a few of you said that you would, so here we are!

First of all, if you don’t understand how a blog generates income, read this post: How Do You Make Money On Your Blog. If that information is new to you, today’s post will make a lot more sense if you read that first.

In today’s post, I’ll explain how things work on my end and share ways you can help support your favorite bloggers if you are of a mind to do so. And this is not just about buying through my links, either.

In fact, the reason I wanted to write this post is because there are sooo many other ways you can support what we bloggers do, and those are actually the ones I had in mind when I mentioned wanting to write this post.

I realized during my reader survey that there are a lot of aspects of social media that the average person doesn’t understand. After being in this space for 12 years, I assume that everyone has an intimate knowledge of how all the social media networks work and when changes are made that affect those of us in the business, but when I read through the comments on my reader survey, I realized how much I take for granted.

Plus I also get quite a few questions about how the affiliate links work so I want to answer those too. But first, let’s talk about the other ways you can support the bloggers you enjoy.

First of all, just by being showing up, by logging on and reading, you are supporting us.

Every time a website is loaded — whether it be a page, a post, the home page, or a comment — is counted as a “page view.” Most bloggers use an analytics software that tracks those page views, and those numbers help us out in two ways.

  1. For one thing, ad networks pay based on page views. Every time a page is loaded, the ads are seen, and we get paid accordingly. It’s pennies per page view, but it adds up.
  2. We also report those page views to brands when we’re negotiating sponsored posts and broader campaigns, and the more page views we have, the more we can charge for sponsored posts.

So even if you never comment or never buy a thing from our links, your presence supports what we do and helps us be able to continue producing content on a regular basis.

To be honest, as long as there are comments coming in, I’ll be blogging even if I don’t make a dime. I just wouldn’t be able to put the amount of time into it that I currently do, but I loved blogging long before it was my job, and I have to believe I’d still be blogging as a hobby even if I had a different job. There are lots of bloggers who blog as a side gig or a hobby simply because it’s fun.

A second way you can support your favorite bloggers is by commenting — both on the blog as well as on Facebook and Instagram.

I’ve had some people say they’re afraid to comment too much for fear of looking like a stalker. (That still makes me giggle.)

You couldn’t be more wrong about that!

It’s the comments that got me hooked on blogging, and the community I’ve cultivated here that keeps me blogging. I love the conversations in the comments, I love hearing from you guys, and I love to see you interacting with one another too.

Besides the fact that I simply enjoy the conversation, comments also help me out by showing potential sponsors that I have a vibrant community of engaged readers and participants that want to know about the products and services I enjoy and trust. In fact, comments on sponsored posts are doubly helpful because it makes the sponsors happy to see people talking about their product or service.

And then there are the social media networks — specifically Facebook and Instagram — which are operated by algorithms. Likes and comments (and shares) on those platforms indicate that my accounts are healthy and active and that my followers want to see more of my content. Basically, Facebook and Instagram will show my content to more people if they see people engaging with it. 

If you’ve noticed that someone you follow on Facebook or Instagram is not showing up in your feed, it is because you haven’t engaged enough with their content.

So yes, please. Feel free to comment and like and share away!

I realize that some people don’t like to comment and like posts on Facebook because of privacy issues, and that’s fine too. But please don’t ever feel that you are commenting too much. As long as your comments are relevant and kind, I welcome them!

FACEBOOK TIP: To see my posts in your feed without a lot of liking and commenting, be sure that you are following my page and have notifications turned on. Here’s how:

Bloggers share their content on the social media networks for several reasons. Primarily, I use them to engage more with you guys, but I also hope that more people will find my blog through those networks. And also, brands pay for campaigns based on follower counts and engagement, which is why a lot of bloggers have taken to various shady practices to buy followers. It’s hard to compete with that, but I am committed to growing my channels organically, even if it is slow at times.

If you’re not following along already, you can find my Facebook Page HERE and my Instagram HERE.

A third way you can support the bloggers you enjoy is by pinning their content to Pinterest. (Find my Pinterest account HERE.)

Again, the goal here is for more people to find my blog and join our community.

I realize it probably sounds like I’m obsessed with growing my blog and social media channels, as if you aren’t enough, and I don’t want you to feel like that at all. In this industry, you’re either growing or you’re dying. There is no middle ground.

People are always coming and going, and I get that. My content may resonate for a time, and then it gets old, or you get busy, or go back to work, or start your own blog… I’ve seen that happen SO any times. Very few stick around for years and years, so if I’m not always bringing in new readers, my blog will eventually wither and die.

So yes, we always have to be finding ways to grow, and every time we get used to how one social media network works, it will change and we have to adjust. It’s kind of frustrating at times, but it’s also fun because things are always changing, and I never get bored.

Finally, subscribing to receive our email newsletters also helps support the work we do…

but only if you’re going to open and read them. Again, numbers matter, but what is most valuable is an engaged community. And I honestly don’t want anyone signing up for my emails if they don’t truly want to open and read them. The last thing I want to do is clutter your inbox with more emails you won’t read.

That said, I do try to make my emails a little extra for those who like the personal touch. I share a little more about what’s going on in my life at the moment, and it’s the best way to be alerted about new posts. If you don’t get my emails and you would like to, you can SIGN UP HERE. I have a daily option (more personal) and a weekly option (digest format.)

Now I’ll answer some of the questions I’ve had about how affiliate links work.

There is a lot of snark out there about fashion blogging and even some resentment about how we make money off of affiliate links, so I always want to be totally up front with you guys about how this works, and then you can decide for yourself if you want to support me in that way or not.

Also, I sometimes get comments that seem almost apologetic that they don’t shop through my affiliate links, and no one should feel obligated to do that or bad about it if they don’t.

I mean, if you do, that is awesome, and thank you, but that’s only a part of how I generate income from this blog.

However, it is a large part, and I’m always grateful when you do choose to shop through my links.

If you’re unsure how that all works, basically look at me as your free personal shopper. I use affiliate links when I link to products, and they have a code attached to them so brands can tell how many times people click on my links and buy something. They reward the blogger with a small commission for each purchase, which in part goes towards purchasing new clothes to give all of you fresh content daily (at no additional expense to you).

Some frequently asked questions about affiliate links:

#1. If I click your link, click around on the website, and buy something else, do you still get credit? 

I do unless you click an affiliate link from another blogger to the same site after mine, and then that one will override mine. The computer does not remember whose link you clicked on and credit that blogger with that purchase, so the last click trumps all.

#2. If I click on your affiliate link and buy something else, do you get credit?

Yes, I do. When you click through an affiliate link, the blogger earns a small commission on your entire purchase, not just on the item she linked to.

#3. If I click on your link and come back and purchase that item at a later date, do you get credit? 

Maybe… That depends on the “cookie” — basically how long the affiliate ID is stored on your browser. Every affiliate program has a different timeframe, so the sooner you make a purchase after clicking on a link, the better for the blogger.

Also, cookies only work in the browser you’re using when you click. For example, if you click on a link in Firefox, add an item to your cart, and then log into the same website in Chrome later in the day and check out, it doesn’t recognize that original cookie so there is no affiliate commission generated.

Also, if you shop through the app on your phone (for instance, Amazon, Target, or Nordstrom all have mobile apps) then I don’t get credit. There is also some debate about how long cookies last from a link in an Instagram Story. Supposedly they only count if the purchase is made immediately, so the best way to assure that your favorite blogger gets credit is to shop from her blog.

Ultimately, you should just shop normally, as you typically would, and if it benefits me or the blogger you’re reading, awesome. If not, that’s just the way it is. This should all happen organically.

Please know, I share all of this NOT because I’m asking you to always come to my site before making a purchase. I certainly would never expect you to do that! But some of you have asked how it works, so I wanted to explain. I don’t want anyone to ever feel duped or taken advantage of, so hopefully this helps unveil some of the mysteries behind this industry.

And if you DO want to make sure to shop through my links, I created a Quick Links section on my sidebar. If there’s a store you’d like me to add to that list, let me know.

At the end of the day, I’m here to provide a service to you and hopefully make your life a little easier. If you shop through my links, that’s awesome, but comments, page views, and sharing my posts also helps my business.

I hope I covered everything. If you think of any other questions, feel free to leave them in the comments. I realize that I take a lot for granted when I’m talking about this subject so I may have left out some important information along the way.

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photo credit: Alison Cornell

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154 thoughts on “Ways You Can Support Your Favorite Bloggers

  1. Thank you!  I’ve wanted to know all of this. It is helpful and you are in no way being self-promotional. Your time and talent are valuable to me in many ways. I’m glad to know that by simply following you supports your being a part of your readers’ lives. 

  2. See! This is just the kind of thing that many of us were hoping to discover. There are really just a few fashionistas I follow regularly. In fact, for those of you who are also kind enough to spend time interacting, I don’t always wait for the email to click in (lesson learned). But I really never thought about, say, if I want to do some Nordstrom shopping, I could visit you first before I go there. Great idea!!

    The reason I have ABSOLUTELY no issue with all of this is you DO provide a service with each post. I have learned so much in the past year or two since I started actively following you and the others, why would I not want to do something that costs me nothing, yet helps someone who helps me?

    I think the people who get porky about it have a little problem with jealousy. It looks like a pretty glam way to earn money, but even from my little hobby blog, I already know how much time goes into just one post… I can imagine when you’re running multi platforms with multi links how time consuming it gets.

    Great post! Thank you 🙂

  3. Thanks for posting this. I always thought since I wear plus sizes that if I clicked thru your link it wouldn’t matter to your income unless it was the exact item you featured. Now I know that other items count also. And that comments help. Who knew? Cute outfit today too!

  4. Good morning
    Praying this morn for back
    Very interesting I mostly
    Purchase items you recommend and enjoy
    The emails.
    You do a great job!

  5. Thank you so much for this information! I don’t follow many fashion blogs, but I want to support the few that I do. I truly value the style, sale, and trend information, as well as the daily contact. Thank you for helping us support something we love!!

  6. This was very interesting, I was always wondering how bloggers get support and knowing even by liking or following or even sharing can benefit you, that’s great! I enjoy your posts and love your style so you’ll have me as a supporter for a long time! 

  7. This was a very informative post. I follow several bloggers and I WANT to support y’all. Thank you for your consistent content and beautiful photos. I’m one of the few that have been with you since the Musings of a Housewife days.

      1. LOL! I remember the recipe posts, etc., but my favorite was always your fashion posts. So glad you went with the fashion route when you changed things up. Pretty clothes are my kryptonite.

        1. I’m so glad! I felt like there were a lot of people doing food well – better than I could do, for sure, but people really seemed to want more wearable fashions for women over 35.

  8. Thank you SO much for the tutorial! I’m one of those who’s never understood how this aspect of social media operates. VERY much appreciate the walk-through!! Have a terrific Monday!

  9. Very good explanation!  I read your blog daily, but don’t comment daily.  Now for sure I will!  I’d love to make purchases through your link, but this gal just isn’t the right size for most of the stores you shop through (uh hum, my fault for a little too much snacking)!  The exception is Loft, I can sometimes size down from an XL to a Large.  What I enjoy the most about your blog, are the ideas you give me for outfits. Even though I have to shop elsewhere for “the look”, you make it easy with the colors & styles!  Especially since you wear jeans a lot, as I do. Thanks forall your   inspiration!  

  10. Thank you for this post. I learned so much!!! I enjoy your blog and read it everyday. I buy a lot of items I see on here but don’t think I have ever actually bought on your blog. Oops. I never realized how to do that. Well, today I bought the jeans right off the blog. Love your style and your genuiness that comes with your blog. It is refreshing. Hope your back gets better. By the way, I can preach ice for swelling but like the comfort of warmth too! Ha! Thanks for being you and for being here for us so we can be fashionable! 

  11. Thanks for the informative post today. I’ve always wondered how it works. Love your outfit by the way, especially those white mules. Hope you feel better and have a great Monday.

  12. I laughed when you said you shop through your own affiliate links. It totally makes sense but it had never occurred to me before.

  13. Thank you so much for posting this informative piece. I was never quite sure about how blogging exactly made money. I did go back and read your earlier post about it, too
    I enjoy reading your blog everyday and have purchased item through you. I am also hooked on Trunk Club. My next Trunk arrives Wednesday!! 
    Hope your back is better soon! 

  14. I appreciate your blog and all the time it saves me, trying to find cute things! I am glad to know how it all works! 

  15. Thanks for this! I finally have you coming to my inbox each day…what a treat! I will let you know (which I guess I should have done long ago) that I tried to subscribe through your posts during a couple of the seasonal fashion series and would get it for one day only. This was frustrating but finally subscribed through your website and get all things Jo-Lynne now… so happy!! Found your blog checking out fashion ideas on Pinterest. I am out of country so hard to shop the links but have done so with a few sites that have great international shipping rates. I really appreciate the tips (I am a similar build) and find it so much easier to put items together from my closet. You are good at what you do…keep ’em coming!!

  16. Very interesting info! Thanks for sharing! You spoke of trying on many pairs of jeans to find “the one” Is there any place that you would recommend that has people willing to work with you doing this or should you take a friend? Just curious. The ones I have worn for years and liked are no longer being made. Thank you in advance,

    1. Hey Janice, it varies from store to store depending on their training but I’ve had good luck at my Nordstrom. I like the denim selection at Bloomingdales better but their sales staff isn’t as helpful. But that’s my 2 stores – it probably is different in every location.

  17. Very helpful and interesting. Thank you for posting this.
    Question: do the Vigoss skinnies fit true to size? I’m a short and love the 27″ length on those. They’ll be ankle length on me????

  18. Thank you, very helpful – that answers the questions I had about buying multiple items. I wasn’t sure if I had to go back out and click on your links for each item but it sounds like no.

  19. Wow, what a fantastic post today. So informative and I’m so glad I voted yes to having you write about this. It’s so interesting and I have to admit that since I started following you, I have learned so much. I see your dedication and passion for what you do and how willing you are to be open and honest about all you share. Honesty, I am 10 years older than you but I have never felt too old for your fashion or style advice or to make purchases from your blog or even when I don’t buy anything….I always take something away from your post. I’m also learning that there is a difference between a fashion blogger with a hobby and one with a business. I see a big difference in the time you invest in your blog over others that I follow. So, thank you for all you do. You’ve won my heart and I will do all I can to help continue to support your blog. Even if it means getting those crazy “Bunion Ads”lol
    So glad my negative commitment on that ad actually helped you!
    Loving the Loft sweater on you and reconsidering buying it ????

  20. This was great! I’m glad to know it helps you when I purchase from your links even if I buy a different item from what you’re featuring. I’m happy to support you Jo-Lynn! I pray your back gets to feeling better even today. ???? ❤️

  21. Excellent post, this really helped me understand it a lot more clearly. Thank you so much! The  thought and creativity and hard work is so apparent in your posts.  My faves are your Nordstrom Anniversary posts… I think you set the bar on that. And your Black Friday post! And I love seeing the Jo-Lynne Shane Post in my email every day!

  22. I’m happy to support your business in any way I can. I get much enjoyment and knowledge from you so I definitely want you to be compensated for all the time you put into your work which is obviously a lot! I really appreciate all the extra commentary you provide on each post about why a particular item works or doesn’t. Very helpful!

  23. This was a great post and I appreciate all the info. I think most of your followers recognize all the hard work you put into your posts and we just want to love and support you. Reading your content and enjoying your photos are a nice escape from our busy days. Thanks JoLynne!

    1. I usually delete them and move on, but sometimes a comment sticks in my craw, and I have an extra glass of wine with dinner. 😉 It helps that my husband is a good sounding board. He and I get a good laugh over a lot of them.

      Sometimes though, underneath the snark, there is some helpful feedback to be gained, so I try to consider that. But more often that not, it’s someone who is unhappy and jealous so I can take it all with a grain of salt. Other times, I realize it is a misunderstanding, and I assume that if someone had the brass to say it, others are thinking it, so I respond and try to explain my position in the comments so others can see it as well.

      At the end of the day, not everyone is going to like me, and that is okay. Ultimately, I’m a people pleaser by nature, and I’m kind of grateful for the negative comments over the years. I think they’ve made me stronger and more confident and less concerned with what people think.

  24. I really enjoyed this information. I enjoy your blog and Insta stories so much. You seem like a really nice person! You’re beautiful too. I’m old enough to be your mother (or maybe your grandmother) but I like to keep up on fashion and beauty trends even if they don’t look the same on me! Haha. 

  25.  This is why I love and read your blog faithfully. You give so much helpful information and it’s obvious how much time and effort and research you put into your blogs every day. Most bloggers do not do that!

  26. So interesting!!! I frequently feel like I’m not supporting you enough b/c I don’t often buy through a link but this makes me feel much better!! Thanks for doing this post :). Praying for your back <3. Love that sweater and your lipstick!!!

  27. Very interesting! There’s a whole other world out there that I had no clue about! ???? Thanks for enlightening us! 

  28. Do you think your Vigoss Jagger jeans fit true to size? Nordstrom’s website says so. I tend to be between two sizes depending on how the jean is made so just curious. I really like this jean and it’s price point.

  29. This post was awesome. You shared the info honestly, and not “self serving”!  I think your character and personality shine through your writing. You have a talent with fashion, but your ability to communicate is probably your best asset. I’ve been following you for several years and will continue to, only change will be to comment more often. Thanks for loving what you do, we benefit from it!

  30. So helpful!!! I have in the past felt like i reply too much and become a stalker look-alike!! LOL, but so glad to know it’s helpful!!!! I love your blog!!! Also, you eye make and lip color look amazing in these shots!! You may have already shared what you’re using, but will you reshare, or tell me what post to look for to see it??

  31. Hi Jo-Lynne, I have learned so much about fashion and trends from you in the several years I have been following you. I look forward to your daily emails and blog posts and it is wonderful that I can support you and your blog just by reading your emails and blog. Who knew?!! You are so dedicated to your readers and the work you put into your blog is very evident. It is great that besides a simple thank you to you, we also can support you financially with very little effort on our part. Hope your back is feeling better soon. Thanks for everything you do!

  32. Hey Jo-Lynne-
    Thanks for posting this.  It really helps me understand how you do get paid and just the working mechanisms of blogging.  I read your emails daily and if I miss I go back and read it because you are so informative,funny, and just plain interesting.  I can relate to a lot of your daily life.   Again, thanks for being transparent and allowing us to learn thru you.
     Keep  the good blogs coming!  🙂  

  33. Great post – I didn’t know any of this stuff! I do wonder though, as I live in Canada, when I click on your link and it re-directs me to the Canadian site – do you still get credit? Most options are not available to me as I don’t want to pay duty, but we do have a Nordstrom here. Maybe I’ll just go into the store and tell them you sent me! 🙂 LOL! I, like a lot of other ladies, look to you for inspiration and shop at other stores, but now I will take a second look at your links.

    1. Hey Joanne, I’m honestly not sure what happens when it redirects to a Canadian site, but no one in the store would have a clue who I am. LOL!!! No worries! As I said, ultimately everyone should just shop organically and if it works, it works. 🙂

  34. Thank you for this great post! It is nice to know how we can support you.  I love your emails.  They are one of my favorite parts of the day.  Praying your back feels better soon!

  35. Thank you so much for this post. It was very educational and I so appreciate your honesty. I will definitely be more conscious of reading the newsletter. 

  36. Wow! Thanks for this information. It was very informative. I always appreciate your honesty. You are truly a top of the line fashion blogger. Have a wonderful day!

  37. Jo-Lynne,
    I always appreciate your honesty and transparency. You are grounded and a pleasure to follow. I love your fashion sense and how you apply it over 40. I feel it keeps me fresh. Thank you!

  38. Jo-Lynn, I have learned SO much the last few years as a reader of your blog. You are always honest, upfront, and forthcoming with information. I have even emailed you a few times and you have always responded.
    I am a new “part-time blogger” and I understand now just how much time goes into a single post. Your blog is on fashion, mine on film locations, but both require much time, attention, and research. It is so true what you said, we put the time in because we love what we do. For me, its a lifelong hobby that I now share with other Hallmark fans. Before starting my blog, I read your post on How to start a fashion blog. I discovered the information translates well to starting ANY kind of blog. And when I had technical difficulties and reached out to you for help, you gave me great info and I have a relationship with CD now.
    I wish you continued success and thank you so much for these insightful posts. And I want to thank you SO MUCH for the help and guidance you have given to me, through your posts and emails. THANK YOU!!!


  39. Thank you for doing this post. I now know a lot more about the workings of blogs. I think you’re online friends are more than happy to help you make money and gain more sponsors. It keeps fresh content coming and we love to see your daily posts in our inbox every morning. It’s like a big Good Morning hello! 
    I do have a question though. If I click on your link and it takes me to a Canadian site, do you still get the credit? I LIKE your Instagram pics but never comment. Does it still count in supporting? There is too much coming thru my feed to comment on all. 
    Are you taking a muscle relaxer for your back? That might help some until you get into your physical therapist. 

    1. I’m not sure about the Canadian sites. Someone else asked that as well. And no need to apologize for not commenting more. We’re all busy. 🙂 And yes, likes definitely help on Instagram and FB.

      I don’t have a muscle relaxer, and my doc can’t see me till Thurs. The PT needs a prescription from him. Gotta love it. I was going to go to Urgent Care to see if they can give me a script, but I’m afraid they’ll want an x-ray and stuff. Blah. I actually MIGHT be feeling SOME better. I did a powerwalk for a mile, and I’m going to take Ibuprofen. I also may just get an appt for a deep tissue massage and see if they can work it out. I feel like it will work itself out in time, I just hate waiting.

  40. Very interesting, thanks for posting!  I too have gotten a lot from reading your blog and look forward to seeing what you put together and hearing your thoughts on this or that fashion trend.  I have made several purchases that I attribute to you (white jeans!), and you are frequently on my mind when I am standing in the dressing room (no, that’s not weird :P).  Given all that, I was happy to see that there are other ways to help you out besides buying off your links, because I don’t buy much online.  So thank you, and keep up the good work.  Btw, I see that those are the less expensive jeans – they look great on you.  And the shoes are cute (not sure how you find mules comfortable, but they look great).  Cheers!

    1. They ARE the less expensive, jeans, and I really like how they look. I wish they were an inch longer, but they should work well with booties or for the petite ladies. I wore them all day and they didn’t stretch out so I’m thrilled to be able to recommend them. If I’m being picky, I don’t love the wash as much as pricier jeans, but for the price point, they’re great.

  41. Thanks so much for this information. I wondered how it worked. I have not commented before but love reading your blog.

  42. I very much want to support your work and your blog, so this guidance is  really helpful. I personally do not enjoy shopping, yet my wardrobe has never been better. I’ve had great success with shopping through your links, based on your recommendations, and haven’t had to go near a store dressing room!  You provide a fun and valuable service, so thanks for letting us know how best to support your efforts. 

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