Why Lasso Is the Best Affiliate Marketing Plugin for WordPress

Tired of using 3-4 plugins to manage your affiliate links? Lasso is THE all-in-one WordPress plugin made for affiliate marketers. Read on.

by Andrew Fiebert | Last Updated: January 22, 2021

After working heads down on Lasso for the past few months, I just stopped publishing content. Getting to product-market-fit was a lot of work.

I used to record a Podcast and (occasionally) write for my site, Listen Money Matters. I also run other online businesses, own a few rental properties, have a family, 1-year-old twins, and a wonderfully supportive wife, Laura. I’m kinda busy.

I try to do the most with the time I have set aside to work, and I can happily say that after years of the grind, I now spend most of my time not on my businesses. Work to live, right?

I also definitely underestimated how difficult it would be to get a plugin like Lasso working in the WordPress ecosystem. Everyone’s website is incredibly unique – different plugins, themes, there’s a lot to consider.

But we did it, we’re stable, AND we shipped a metric ton of awesome features along the way. What can I say? We don’t play 😉

Our Pick
Lasso: The All-In-One WordPress Plugin for Affiliate Marketing
14-Day Free Trial

A WordPress plugin that lets you add, manage, and display your affiliate links from any program, including Amazon. Increase conversions. Find new affiliate link opportunities. Earn more revenue! Less than 5 minutes to set up.

Start Your Free Trial Learn More

I only recently popped my head up for air, and I noticed that we bent a few noses out of shape in the process of launching Lasso and our site.

I Really Didn’t Plan On Writing This

As anyone who knows me can attest to, I prefer spending my time building awesome things and not cheerleading. It’s where I feel most at home – and satisfied with my work.

It was brought up that we haven’t done a great job of telling Lasso’s story. And as a result, our comparison pages are under-developed. In fact, much of our website is. We spent so much time building Lasso that we didn’t pause to explain what it is we built.

We need demo videos, detailed screenshots, and a really nuanced explanation of why you need us on your site.

More importantly, we need to explain exactly where we fit in this whole mess of plugins and tools for affiliate marketers. For some tools like Genius Link, we use them on our own sites. But Lasso isn’t meant to internationalize traffic, and we’re more than happy to let Amazon OneLink and Genius Link duke it out on that.

For posterity, here’s a display for Genius Link using our display theme called Splash:

So that’s what this article is about, explaining Lasso’s place in the world and why I think we’re the best tool out there for affiliate marketing. Period.

I’ll also explain why we’re a complete replacement for legacy plugins like Amalinks Pro.

It turns out, many of these plugins were built eons ago and really haven’t attempted to improve much since they were released. This is probably why some of them are so butt-hurt about Lasso even existing. Competition? Yuck, sounds hard, amirite?

What Lasso Is

We’re the best plugin for all affiliate marketers if we do say so ourselves. We’re not just for Amazon Affiliates, Reviews-only sites, or Best Lists. I mean, we are, but we’re so much more than that.

Want to promote something that isn’t on Amazon? Us too, and sadly there were no plugins built for us. We needed to promote things like Betterment for our personal finance website where none of the products we discuss are on Amazon. Except for books, but that income is minimal.

We begrudgingly made this tool for ourselves because we couldn’t buy it. We needed it.

Eventually, people we spoke with asked for it, and, well, we figured we would be crazy not to oblige. Lasso is the tool we use to manage our own large affiliate sites – we’re a customer too. Many times over.

Lasso was created because everything out there is unapologetically not for sites like ours (or like Wirecutter for that matter).

These are the reasons why we needed to create Lasso:

Link Changes

Our partners jump between places like ShareASale and Impact far more than we’d like them to. And when it happens, it was really annoying to manage.

We also built a lot of our relationships later in the age of our site. Many companies didn’t want to associate with us until we proved ourselves. I totally get it. But, once we earned their respect, we wanted their affiliate money.

That meant we had to monetize posts long after we created them. A use-case Lasso excels at – being insanely flexible in manage links across your entire site.

We Change Our Minds

For example, we were a huge fan of SoFi until we heard of tools like Earnest to refinance your debt. We wanted to replace mentions of one product with another so we can best represent the tools we recommend without sacrificing income.

We don’t just change our minds about affiliates, sometimes we link to an article on another site and eventually decided to make similar content for our site. Identifying these linking opportunities shouldn’t be difficult.

Simple Text Links Are Not Enough

Once upon a time, just having monetized links was enough to earn a living. It was a great time, and we miss it dearly.

Today, we need to optimize for an internet where attention is short, and people want the answer now. Some visitors will read our articles, many will skip directly to our recommendations – and that’s ok. We create for both people, and it’s no doubt why sites like Wirecutter are hugely successful.

So, for the scanners out there, we need beautiful mobile-first displays to identify our recommendations. And most importantly, convert our visitors.

Because a link to WP Engine converts some visitors, but for most, it’s a thoughtful display like this:

WP Engine

We host all of our sites with WP Engine, nuff said. They are the best WordPress managed-hosting service that we've found. And we've tried most of them. Nothing beats the power and ease of use of their admin tools.

Sign Up Affiliate Program

Resource Pages Account for 10% of Our Income

Pat Flynn was right all along. A killer Resources Page really can bring in serious revenue. On our site Listen Money Matters, our Toolbox page accounts for 10% of our income.

The very first version of Lasso, before it was even called Lasso, was created for exactly this purpose. That’s how important it is to our businesses.

See those review links?

Visitors often start at our Toolbox and then work their way down into our reviews before they make a decision. Those visitors convert at a rate many times higher than those who just visit our review organically.

With Lasso, creating your own high-performing Resources Page takes less than 10 minutes. How’s that for easy income?

We Also Sell Our Own Products

Courses bring in a ton of money, and the business of selling courses is very lucrative. With a course, you not only own the promotion of it, but you own 100% of the profits. And you can set the price to whatever you think makes sense.

The success of these products is critical to the success of our businesses. We needed to not only display them prominently but even differentiate them from our affiliate links. A separate theme, perhaps? Done!

If you were wondering, we use Podia to sell our courses. It’s an amazing tool, and I highly recommend it. That’s what affiliate marketing is about, recommending the things you love, right?

We Fully Support Amazon

All that said, we own other sites that are Amazon-specific. You might even say they’re exclusively monetized with Amazon. While our competitors solve that problem, we decided that using a single tool made the most sense, so we built Amazon support into Lasso’s core.

And, since we were going to do the work, we made it infinitely better than our competitors. How? We allow you to manage Amazon products on your site without even worrying about the API. Lasso will grab the product data for you.

We also support Amazon’s Product Advertising API (PA API) if you want to show the price on your site. We require the API to show pricing to comply with Amazon’s Terms of Service.

Oh, and we’re also obsessed with Amazon’s Terms of Service. We’ve read everything written on it and consulted Amazon themselves for things we didn’t quite understand. Like Automatic International Monetization. We even prevent you from cloaking Amazon links. If we detect a cloaked Amazon link on your site, we’ll update it automatically to comply with their TOS.

Our affiliate sites are where we earn most of our money, we wouldn’t put ourselves at risk, and we wouldn’t put our customers at risk.

An Opportunity Detection Engine

Sounds cool, right? Well, it is, or at least we think so.

It turns out it takes a long-time to build an effective, authoritative niche site. We’ve done it a few times, and every time it’s taken years for us to build (from scratch).

Because it takes so long to build a truly successful business, we discovered and learned new things not just in the first year but in year 2, 3, 4, 5, etc.…

For example, we learned we could monetize the tool YNAB only this past month. Our personal finance site is over 7 years old. Thankfully Lasso was built for exactly this problem.

In under 2 minutes, I was able to see all of the unmonetized links pointing to YNAB and turn them into monetized links. That’s because I knew the domain for YNAB is youneedabudget.com, so I went right to the Domains tab in Opportunities and started monetizing.

I also used the Lasso Keyword tool in Opportunities to search for mentions of the acronym “YNAB,” so I could look into monetizing them as well.

It turns out we mentioned “YNAB” 62 times since we started the site, and I wanted to be thoughtful about how we monetized those mentions.

We’ve learned that visitors are more likely to convert when you’re honest and tasteful. That’s why we built-in the ability to view the context of each mention so you can decide if you want to monetize each mention individually.

But Lasso is not only for me – at one point, almost 11 people were working on Listen Money Matters. And, just like me, our team forgets to monetize things – we’re only human. Well, a mistake doesn’t have to be forever (or costly), nor should it require someone to read every single article to catch these mistakes.

So, to protect us from ourselves, we built Lasso to find Amazon links that are unmonetized or using someone else’s tag and monetize them, automatically. Because sometimes we take inspiration from our competitors.

As Austin Kleon says in his book, “Great artists steal.”

Also, not to brag, but we monetized that above link after the fact with Lasso. Because who can be bothered with monetization when you’re in the zone creating something awesome, right?

There are a ton more reasons Lasso was created and a ton more delightful automations for you to discover, but as our competitors have aptly pointed out, we’ve not done a great job of shining a light on what that is.

Again, that’s why I’m writing this post and what we’re trying to do on our Blog every week. If you like posts like this, I highly recommend you check out the blog and subscribe. We’re trying to teach everything we know, for free.

What Lasso Isn’t

We’re building as fast as we can, we’re excited, and our customers are excited – which makes us even more excited. That said, we believe there’s still so much more to build.

There’s also a lot we don’t want to build, and for a good reason. We’re not going to build a feature for the sake of having a feature. Our ultimate goal is for our customers to succeed, not appease them.

As Steve Jobs once said, “It’s really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.

Lasso Isn’t An Internationalization Tool

First, as we eluded to earlier in the post, Lasso isn’t an Internationalization Tool. We even built a lightweight JS file to help with this in the early days of building Lasso, but we backed off.

Once we heard that Amazon was actually trying to do this themselves, the team quickly agreed that it would be a waste of time and money for us to build in this direction.

So, we recommend using Amazon OneLink and/or Genius Link. We use both of them, and if you’re an Amazon-first site, we think you should too. Regardless, this problem will likely disappear in the next 1-2 years. Nuff said.

Lasso Isn’t Slow

Ha! See what we did there. Yea, we added a Pro into our Cons section.

We don’t grab all of your Amazon data when you load a page on your site. That’s low class and slow. We’re all about speed – Google even says it’s a ranking factor. And it should be; who’s got the patience for a slow site when there’s another just as good answer ready and waiting?

Some of our competitors do this; we don’t need to call them out because we’re above creating posts like “XYZ stinks, and I don’t link it” type posts. It is a good way to tell which plugins spend more time not making their product better.

Our CSS is also super lean and super customizable. We don’t just care about how our displays look; we want the insides of Lasso to look great too. Because great looking code is more likely to be stable and easy to maintain.

Lasso Doesn’t Do Comparison Tables

Comparison tables are a weird niche-site phenomenon. We’ve spent years studying huge affiliate sites, and the ones with comparison tables aren’t leaders in their space.

Look no further than Wirecutter – recently bought by The NY Times (great SEO play there).

You will not find a comparison table in their articles, yet they are wickedly useful, AND they rank at the top of Google for like everything. Why is that?

Because most people just don’t care that much. Just show me the best, the cheapest, or the upgrade pick so I can move on with my life.

This is the closest Wirecutter has to a comparison table:

But it’s not just Wirecutter – every site with Lasso installed can do that as well.

If I wanted to know the dimensions of a chef knife, I’ll click the product link and look at the details on Amazon or whatever site is linked. What’s more likely is that details like this simply don’t matter to me. Height of the best broom in the world? I don’t care, and I’m willing to bet you don’t either.

Better yet, if you include multiple links to sites, then I’ll click all of them to find the best price. Maybe I don’t buy on Amazon but guess what, like the savvy site owner you are, I got a cookie on my computer anyway. That’s the experience we’re going for, and it’s what the average lazy customer actually wants.

This, on the other hand, is a comparison table that is prominently displayed by one of our competitors on their demo page. They clearly think this is good – guess you either have good taste or you don’t.

It doesn’t take a business building master to see that it’s clunky, poorly designed, repetitive, incomplete, and jammed with unnecessary features (search for a table, really?).

Simple, concise, and thoughtful content is what converts. Not some arbitrary information jam-packed into a table. Plus, most people literally hate tables and practically vomit when they look at something like Excel.

Don’t believe us? Use Lasso’s killer Google Analytics integration and prove it with your own site and your own data. Oh yea, I also just jammed another feature into the Con section. Boss level planning right here, just can’t help myself 😉

Finally, besides comparison tables just sucking at conversion and serving a largely non-existent problem for visitors, want to know what else they’re bad at? Being mobile-friendly. They’re literally the worst. Cell phones have narrow screens, in case you forgot.

Also, over 60% of the internet is mobile, and that number is growing. You need a mobile-friendly website.

If your site isn’t mobile-first, then your income is definitely hurting for it. It’s just reality.

Lasso Isn’t the Cheapest Option

Nor do we even try to be. Did you see our Black Friday deal? No? Well, that’s because we didn’t have one.

We spend every dollar Lasso earns making it better; we’re not trying to get fat at your expense here.

Honestly, it’s the only easy way to explain how we built it all so quickly. If I had to guess, it’s making some of our competitors nervous 😉

For the cheapest option, grab Pretty Links. It’s basic, and it will get you started.

We actually started there ourselves, which is why we created an Import option, so you don’t get stuck with a starter product like Pretty Links or just an over-priced, under-powered one like Amalinks Pro.

But in all seriousness, Lasso is $19 a month. And we’re proud of that; we started at $49/month well before we were profitable. When we turned the corner on profitability, we reduced our customers’ price because we love them.

We believe Lasso can easily generate far more value than $19 every month for your site, but there’s a much better reason for a low monthly price instead of a high one-time fee (like our competitors).

It best aligns our interests with yours. It sets our North Star at creating value for you every month.

Not only is Lasso worth at least $19 a month in revenue growth:

  1. We try and ship new features and improvements every month. Not satisfied with what we’ve already built, we try to create $19 in new value for our customers every month.
  2. We have fanatical white-glove support. I can say that because 99.9% of the time when you contact support, you get me. As anyone that’s reached out for help knows, the team and I will go to the moon and back for you. Because you hired us to make you more money and we take that responsibility seriously. You don’t have to create an obnoxious Support Ticket; get a real person and real help quickly.

Now, imagine if you gave me an entire year upfront for “support and stuff” or whatever plugins say these days. All a plugin owner would have to do is the bare minimum, so you don’t cancel… in a year. And, guess what, when there are no competitors, then that bar is pretty low.

So, to people who are looking to bad-mouth us, it looks like your competition just arrived.  Write what you want, but you’re going to have to start working for your dinner. Bring it on!

We’re also so confident of how awesome Lasso is that we let you download our plugin’s code and use it free for 14 days. Our competitors need to see the money upfront – before you even learn if their solution fits your needs.

In Lasso’s 14-day trial, we:

  1. Teach you how to make the most of Lasso.
  2. Answer any questions you have, and help with potential plugins and theme conflicts.
  3. Do everything we can to help you out.

The truth is, at this ultra-premium-can’t-believe-it monthly price, we’re growing like Gangbusters. Our customers literally tell us we should charge more. Damn.

Worried, our free trial will end, and you’ll be stuck with a $19 bill you didn’t want? Don’t worry; we will email you two days before your trial ends and offer a 100% money-back guarantee.

We’re here to make an honest living and help you earn yours.

Our Pick
Lasso: The All-In-One WordPress Plugin for Affiliate Marketing
14-Day Free Trial

A WordPress plugin that lets you add, manage, and display your affiliate links from any program, including Amazon. Increase conversions. Find new affiliate link opportunities. Earn more revenue! Less than 5 minutes to set up.

Start Your Free Trial Learn More

There’s So Much More to Come

We want what you want because it helps our own business do better. We’re in his together.

We’re also really excited about what we’re building next – if you’re interested, ask us.

To our butt-hurt competitors, sorry, not sorry.

The real question is, are you ready to take your site’s income seriously?

Sign up for your 14-day free trial to Lasso – we’re the plugin you’ve been waiting for.

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