I’ve written before about how you can make money with curated content websites. Now, I’m back with a twist:

Earning affiliate income from curated content automatically.

Yup – I’m going to show you how you can automatically curate content and automatically insert relevant affiliate links into that content. You’re going to see the word “automatically” a lot.

The beauty of this approach is that, after the setup process, it’s pretty much 100% hands-off. Everything is taken care of automatically by WordPress plugins.

I’ll also show you how you can do this respectfully and with proper credit to the original creators.

Want to learn more? Let’s get started…

What You’ll Need To Create An Automatic Content Curation Site With Affiliate Links

In order to follow this tutorial, you’re going to need one free plugin and two premium plugins:

  • WP RSS Aggregator – this free plugin lets you easily import RSS feeds to your WordPress site.
  • Feed To Post Add-on – this paid add-on for WP RSS Aggregator makes it possible to import RSS feed items as actual WordPress posts, which is essential if you want to insert your own affiliate links.
  • ThirstyAffiliates Pro – in addition to helping you manage affiliate links, this plugin lets you automatically link certain keywords to those affiliate links. You’ll use it to automatically insert affiliate links in the content that WP RSS Aggregator/Feed To Post imports.

How To Get Started: Your Step-By-Step Guide

I’ll give you detailed instructions for each step of the process, but here’s how this set up works at a high level. You:

  1. Configure ThirstyAffiliates to automatically link certain keywords to your affiliate links
  2. Use WP RSS Aggregator and the Feed To Post add-on to import excerpts of content from relevant sources, including credit to the original source
  3. Optionally use keyword filters to only import content that you have an affiliate link for

Let’s go through it step-by-step…

Step 1: Configure Automatic Keyword Links In ThirstyAffiliates

ThirstyAffiliates is a popular link cloaking plugin with a free version at WordPress.org. For this article, you’ll need the Pro version, though, because it includes a cool feature that lets you automatically link certain keywords on your site to an affiliate link that you specify.

To use it, make sure that you have the Pro version installed (you’ll also need the free version installed in order for Pro to function).

Then, go to ThirstyAffiliates → New Affiliate Link in your WordPress dashboard. At the top, give it a name and enter your actual affiliate link in the Destination URL field. For this example, let’s say it’s a link to the WooCommerce affiliate program:

thirstyaffiliates interface

Once you’ve done that, scroll down to the Autolink Keywords section to have some fun. In the box, enter the keywords that you want ThirstyAffiliates to automatically link.

For example, if you put in “WooCommerce”, ThirstyAffiliates will automatically link the word “WooCommerce” to your affiliate link whenever it appears in content on your site.

For some links, you might just want a single keyword, while others you might want to use multiple keywords.

Below your list of keywords, you can also configure:

  • Limit – this helps you avoid filling your entire text with affiliate links by setting a maximum number of affiliate links for each keyword
  • Enabled auto link inside headings – choose whether or not to automatically link words inside a heading tag – like <h2>
  • Random placement – by default, ThirstyAffiliates will link the first X mentions of the keyword. But if you turn this on, it will just pick X random mentions.

autolink keywords

Once you’re done, make sure to save your link to make things live.

Then, repeat the process for all the different affiliate links that you want to automatically include in your curated content.

Note – you can also configure global settings for ThirstyAffiliates’ Autolinker functionality by going to ThirstyAffiliates → Settings → Autolinker:

global settings

Step 2: Configure Your Content Feeds

Once you’ve set up your affiliate links, you’re all done with ThirstyAffiliates. Now, you need to set up your automatic curated content, which you’ll do with WP RSS Aggregator and the Feed To Post add-on.

For this section, you’ll need to pick the different sites that you want to curate. I’ll use WP Mayor’s content for the example – but you’ll ideally want to pick content from several different sites to create a true content hub.

To get started, go to RSS Aggregator → Add New in your WordPress dashboard. At the top, enter the URL to the RSS feed for the site you want to curate (learn how to find a site’s RSS feed URL):

add new feed

In the Feed to Post – General and Feed to Post – Images sections, you can configure more about how your feed functions. You can choose to enable/disable these features as needed, but the defaults should be fine.

If you want to automatically publish new content (rather than holding it for manual approval), you should set Post Status equal to Published, though:

auto publish

In the Feed to Post – Taxonomies section, you can assign certain categories or tags to certain content from this feed source, which can help you create more organized content:

configure categories

And then further down in the Feed to Post – Prepend To Content section, you can add credit to the original source using placeholders. You want to be respectful of the original content creator, so this helps you give them proper credit and a backlink.

For example, using something like this:

This post was originally published at 
&lt;a href=“{{original_post_url}}”&gt;{{feed_name}}&lt;/a&gt; by {{post_author_name}}

Lets you automatically provide attribution for each post that you import:

source attribution

You could also use the Append To Content box if you’d prefer to give credit after the imported text, instead of before.

Finally, another good option to enable is Word Trimming. This lets you set on a limit on the number of words that you import. Again, this helps you give proper attribution to the original author by only importing an excerpt to go along with your source credit (rather than the full text of the post):

word trimming

Once you’re finished, make sure to publish your feed. WP RSS Aggregator will then start automatically importing content from that feed.

To add more content sources, just repeat the process for each RSS feed that you want to use.

Step 3: Use Keyword Filtering Add-on To Only Import Content With Affiliate Offers

If you want to take things even further, you can use the separate Keyword Filtering add-on for WP RSS Aggregator to only import feed items that you know have an opportunity for an affiliate link.

When you install the Keyword Filtering add-on, you get a new Feed Keyword Filtering option when setting up your feed. All you need to do is enter all the autolinked keywords that you set up with ThirstyAffiliates. Then, WP RSS Aggregator will only import content if it includes one of the keywords that will get autolinked by ThirstyAffiliates:

keyword filtering

How Everything Comes Together – An Example

Once you set everything up, here’s an example of a post that WP RSS Aggregator automatically imported from WP Mayor:

example

See how it all comes together?

  • [1] – the original post title
  • [2] – credit to the original source, automatically inserted using the placeholders
  • [3] – an excerpt of the post – not the full text – configured by the number of words you set in Word Trimming
  • [4] – an affiliate link that ThirstyAffiliates automatically inserted

As the content sources that you added post new content, WP RSS Aggregator will automatically import it. And if that content contains an affiliate link opportunity, ThirstyAffiliates will automatically insert your link.

Basically, everything is on autopilot from now on!

Have any other questions about how you can automatically generate an affiliate income from your curated content? Leave a comment and we’ll try to help out!

About Colin Newcomer

Colin Newcomer is a freelance blogger for hire with a background in SEO and affiliate marketing. He helps clients grow their web visibility by writing primarily about digital marketing, WordPress, and B2B topics.