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7 Proven Website Traffic Monetization Strategies You Need To Try in 2023

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7 Proven Website Traffic Monetization Strategies You Need To Try in 2023

We’re talking traffic monetization. Are you running a website and wondering about monetizing traffic? How does it work? Is your website’s traffic able to be monetized? What are the options?

We’re answering all those questions and more in this article.

Discover what traffic monetization is, income potential, requirements, and more.

  • Learn how advertising campaigns work
  • Read about how creating valuable content can pay off in dividends
  • Discover the power and income potential behind paid content, and much more!

Let’s get to it!

How Do Websites Make Money From Traffic?

Websites make money from traffic in a number of ways, from sponsored partnerships to display ads and other ways. Website owners with even minimal amounts of traffic can make a sizable income. This is how website owners can be rewarded for their valuable content and traffic.

This food blogger makes six figures from her website, monetizing it from sources like ad networks and partnerships. Kate Doubler earns $40,000/month from her health website.

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In this article, we’re covering 7 proven ways to convert your website traffic to income:

  • Ad network
  • Affiliate marketing
  • Sponsored partnerships
  • Selling products
  • Selling services
  • Lead generation
  • Memberships

Let’s start!

7 Proven Traffic Monetization Strategies to Try

From selling ad space to doing sponsored posts, we’re going to cover 7 monetization methods to use to generate revenue for your site.

1. Ad Network

Working with an ad network is a great way to monetize your website with advertisements. You earn ad revenue each time a web visitor clicks on an ad. It’s a good way to make money passively, as you can imagine.

The ad network is a middleman between you, the publisher, and the advertiser. Advertisers pay ad networks to show their company to a larger audience. Publishers work with ad networks to monetize their traffic.

After meeting the requirements to join the ad network, display advertising will be placed on your website you will make money passively.

  • Jon Dykstra earns $100K/month from his websites, in part from display advertising and working with the ad network, Mediavine
  • $13,000/month from this website, with about half coming from display ads.

What Ad Networks Monetize Websites?

There are many ad networks for bloggers you can work with:

Want to learn more about ad networks? Here are 13 of the best ad networks for bloggers to enjoy passive income.

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How to Join Ad Networks

Each ad network may have requirements for publishers to join. This can include traffic volume, website quality, content guidelines, and more.

First, identify an ad network you want to join.

Next, apply to join the ad network. Your website will be reviewed by the ad network. This can be instant or manually reviewed. Once your website is approved, you’ll be able to have ads placed on your site.

With some networks, like Google Adsense, you can choose an ad format and create and place the display ads where you want:

  • Sidebar
  • In content
  • Native ads

Other networks, like Mediavine, will manage the ad creation/placement process for you, making the process mostly hands-off.

After ads are placed on the site, you just want to continue to comply with the network’s policies and continue creating great, high-quality content.

Pros and Cons of Advertising Networks

What’s good, and what should you watch out for with advertising networks?

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Pros

  • Passive income
  • Easy to set up

Cons

  • Stringent requirements to join
  • Too many ads can be off-putting to your audience

With no traffic requirements, Ezoic is an easy choice for bloggers looking to make money from their sites from the start. It’s trusted by 10,000+ publishers, so why not join them?

2. Affiliate Marketing

traffic monetization using affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing works when publishers join affiliate programs and refer products to their audience. When web visitors click the affiliate link and take action (like making a purchase), the affiliate (the publisher) earns a commission.

To give you an idea of the income potential and how much affiliate marketers make, here’s what some successful affiliates (and website owners) are making:

How Can Websites Use Affiliate Marketing For Traffic Monetization?

First, join an affiliate program. Identify products that would be beneficial for your audience. Join affiliate programs for those products and then refer the products to your audience using affiliate links.

You can also join an affiliate network which is a collection of affiliate programs in various niches.

Examples of affiliate networks include:

  • Shareasale
  • Maxbounty
  • Impact Radius

Take a look at our pick of the best affiliate programs.

How to Start With Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing has a low barrier to entry. Publishers of virtually any size can usually join most affiliate programs, whether you receive 1,000 visits or 100,000 visits a month.

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If you’re looking to turn on traffic monetization for your website right now, affiliate marketing is the best way to start making money fast with your traffic.

Note: Some affiliate programs do have traffic requirements and other criteria.

Pros and Cons of Affiliate Marketing

Pros

  • Beginner-friendly way to make money with your website
  • Easy to start
  • Good for publishers at all levels
  • Lucrative

Cons

  • Earnings can be heavily driven by traffic levels

Check out the Affiliate Lab training course by Matt Diggity to learn all about affiliate marketing and ways to maximize your earnings potential using this method.

sponsored partnerships

Monetize your traffic with sponsored partnerships when you collaborate with a brand that pays you to share them with your audience.

For example, if you’re a food blog, a tomato sauce company might pay you to make a recipe with their sauce, sharing it with your audience in a blog post.

Sponsored partnerships can be very lucrative.

Top publishers earn up to $50,000 to $100,000+ per month from sponsorships alone!

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How to Start With Sponsored Partnerships

Like with affiliate marketing, sponsored partnerships can work for web publishers of various sizes. There usually aren’t any hard and fast requirements as exist with ad networks.

There are three ways to find sponsored partnerships:

  1. Join sponsored post networks
  2. Reach out to companies
  3. Have companies contact you

First, you can join sponsored post networks. These companies are intermediaries between publishers and advertisers. They connect the two together to work in a sponsored partnership.

Examples include Aspire, Izea, and TapInfluence.

Next, you can be proactive and contact companies. Find companies you want to partner with and email them. This is your opportunity to cold pitch your idea. You may or may not get a partnership here, but the more companies you pitch, the more potential opportunities are available.

Lastly, companies can contact you. For this to work, you want to make sure you have your contact information prominently displayed on your website, social media, and other places your business is published online so it’s easy for advertisers to reach out to you.

Pros and Cons of Sponsored Partnerships

Pros

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  • Lucrative
  • A fun, creative way to work with your favorite companies

Cons

Check out our article on how to get sponsors for your blog to learn more.

4. Selling Products

selling products

Using your website as a place to advertise, share, and sell products is an excellent way to monetize your traffic.

How does selling products on your website work?

How to Start With Selling Products

First, decide what you’ll be selling. Physical products, digital products, services? Next, consider testing the market to make sure market demand exists for what you’ll be selling. It’d be awful to put all your hard work and effort to testing and developing a product to sell when there’s no market for it.

After confirming market demand, it’s time to source your product. This could be ordering wholesale, handmaking goods, or preparing digital assets.

Next, choose a selling platform. Here are some options:

Pros and Cons of Selling Products

Pros

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  • Passive income opportunity (for digital products)
  • Lucrative
  • Easy for publishers of all sizes to do

Cons

I like that selling products has a low barrier to entry. Publishers of all sizes can do this. It’s a way to earn passive income if you’re selling digital products. It can be very lucrative as well.

With all product-based businesses, though, you’ll need customer service and support to deal with customers. That’ll likely be you, which can be painful for some website owners that would prefer this process be hands-off to them. But you can always hire someone to do this for you!

5. Selling Services

traffic monetization selling services

Selling services is a great option for traffic monetization. If you offer services, sell them to your audience. Here are some examples:

  • Consulting
  • Coaching
  • Bookkeeping
  • Website audits
  • Web design

Selling services can be extremely lucrative:

Marcus Clarke earns up to $100K/month selling services!

How to Start With Selling Services

The process for selling services is very similar to selling products.

You’ll decide what to sell, identify a need, test the market, and set up your store or webpage for selling services and collecting payment.

Pros and Cons of Selling Services

This is virtually the same as for products.

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Pros

  • Lucrative
  • Beginner-friendly

Cons

  • No unlimited income potential usually
  • Time-intensive

6. Lead Generation

lead generation for traffic monetization

Lead generation is one of the top traffic monetization strategies of marketers worldwide. Did you know that 50% of marketers consider lead generation a top marketing priority? Podcasts, blog posts, and videos are the top content types that generate awareness and demand.

Website owners attract potential leads for the purpose of converting them into paying customers. As a traffic monetization strategy, publishers can sell those leads to companies and make money.

An example of how this might work would be a finance blogger giving away a free budgeting worksheet in exchange for a web visitor’s email address. Then later, selling those leads to a lead aggregator or company.

Lead generation can make millions!

Shane Dutka makes millions from lead generation and affiliate marketing!

You’ll create content to solve your audience’s problem. Then, generate a lead capture form for them to “learn more.” When you capture the email address, you can sell it to companies for a flat fee or commission.

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It’s a widely used traffic monetization practice that websites use to make money.

So, using your website is a great option for generating leads for the purpose of traffic monetization.

How to Start With Lead Generation

Here’s a step-by-step outline of how the lead generation process works:

  1. Identify your target audience: Figure out what audience you’re targeting and identify key problems they have that you’ll market to for the purpose of capturing them as a lead. For example, homeowners that need their lawn cut by a lawnmowing service.
  2. Attract potential leads: Create content that aims to solve your audience’s problem. This could be a blog post to help homeowners know what to look for in a lawnmowing service company and what questions to ask them.
  3. Make an offer and use a CTA (call-to-action): Post a CTA form for the reader to learn more. This can be a simple form where the reader shares their email address.
  4. Capture the lead: They will submit their email address in exchange for learning more about getting their lawn cut by a lawnmowing service.
  5. Sell your lead list to clients: After capturing the lead’s email address, you sell it to your client, the lawnmowing service company.

This is how lead generation works, in a nutshell. Lawnmowing is one example of a problem your audience might have. It’ll differ of course, based on your niche.

Pros and Cons of Lead Generation

Pros

  • An opportunity to relationship-build
  • Increased sales opportunities
  • Cost-effective

Cons

  • Time-intensive
  • Resource-intensive
  • Competition

7. Membership Groups

membership groups traffic monetization

Last but not least, a membership group or membership site is a traffic monetization option to use for making money with your site. This can be a free or paid membership group. The money is in the community.

A group is a place where you’ll share content firsthand with your audience. They’ll get to mix and mingle with like-minded peers, learn from you, learn from others, ask questions, and be part of a niche community.

Sarah Chant makes $10,000/month from her travel blogs and Facebook group!

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How to Start With Membership Groups

I joined a business Facebook group of over 100,000 entrepreneurs. The group creator charged a $99/month fee to advertise to that group, and it really seemed like it was paying off for members.

Imagine spending 100 bucks a month to advertise to 100K targeted people in your niche. It was a steal and an incredibly effective way to promote products!

Read about these 15 ways to monetize a Facebook group to get some more ideas.

Pros and Cons of Membership Groups

Pros

  • Easy to start
  • Recurring-revenue opportunity
  • Community-building opportunity

Cons

  • Lack of engagement is possible
  • Resource-intensive

Is Your Website Traffic Ready to be Monetized?

traffic monetization

The big question is, are you ready to have your traffic monetized? The answer is probably yes. If you’re thinking about monetizing your traffic, you’re probably ready, but just in case, check out our post on optimizing your blog for monetization.

Regardless of where you’re at in your website journey, there are at least 2 or 3 different ways you can make money from your site.

Beginner publishers can take advantage of affiliate marketing or lead generation. Seasoned sites with moderate amounts of traffic can join high-traffic ad networks like Mediavine or Adthrive. There’s really something for everyone.

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Which traffic monetization strategy will you start with?



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Learn to Play Guitar Even if You Have No Previous Training for Just $20

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Learn to Play Guitar Even if You Have No Previous Training for Just $20

Disclosure: Our goal is to feature products and services that we think you’ll find interesting and useful. If you purchase them, Entrepreneur may get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners.

Moe than 700 million people worldwide play the guitar, and there are numerous enterprises associated with the skill. Of course, it’s also one of the most fun instruments to play and not very difficult to learn. If you’d like to have a business, or even a hobby, related to playing guitar then the 2024 Guitar Lessons Training Bundle can help you quickly learn to play guitar even if you are a complete novice.

You need no experience whatsoever to start with the Beginner Guitar Lessons Crash Course, a student favorite with an average rating of 4.6 stars out of 5. It assumes you know nothing at all about guitar, but you’ll get quickly up-to-speed without skipping anything important.

You can then follow up with Guitar Technique, another highly-rated course. It will teach you the most important techniques for playing guitar. This course is actually for students at any level because the lessons are easy to start off with, then become more difficult as you gradually advance. You’ll begin to develop your own style in this class.

Blues lovers will thoroughly enjoy the Easy Blues Guitar Crash Course. It’s another beginner course, but you’ll quickly learn to play real blues guitar and the basic terms used in this genre. One of the best, easiest and most fun ways of improving your soloing is to play children’s songs. So you should love the Children’s Songs for the Guitar course, in which you’ll learn 20 children’s songs.

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Once you’re done with the previous courses, or if you’re already at an advanced skill level on guitar, then you’ll be ready to take the Guitar Jam Method course.

It’s for just the intermediate and advanced guitar students, focusing on teaching you how to jam without needing to play a specific song. Creative guitarists can really improve their jamming and soloing skills in this class.

The course also contains seven modules “…for the Curious Guitarist”. These are Fingerstyle, Ear Training, Songwriting, Guitar Lessons, Jazz, Blues and Christmas Songs.

All of the courses are presented by Dan Dresnok, who has taught guitar to tens of thousands of students online and in-person. He’s also been a performer and recording studio session guitarist, specializing in music theory, guitar, blues, jazz, rock and bluegrass.

Get The 2024 Guitar Lessons Training Bundle while it’s available for only $19.99 (reg. $480).

StackSocial prices subject to change.

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Inflation Not Fading Fast Enough for Stock Investors

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Inflation Not Fading Fast Enough for Stock Investors

Investors may have celebrated the end of high inflation too soon. The CPI report shows inflation bouncing higher and thus pushing back the start date for Fed rate cuts. This has the S&P 500 (SPY) coming off recent highs. This begs questions like how much more downside could we see? And when will the bull market get back on track? 44 year investment veteran Steve Reitmeister shares his answers to these questions in this timely commentary including a preview of his top picks to stay ahead of the pack. Read on below for more.

High inflation refuses to “go quietly into the night“.

Instead, the most recent CPI report was too hot which greatly downgraded the odds of a rate cut coming in June or July. With that bond rates went higher on Wednesday and stock prices went lower.

Thursday’s PPI report was a bit tamer helping to ease the mood. But it does cloud the outlook for the market.

So, we will do our best to shine some light on our path forward from here in today’s commentary.

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Market Commentary

April started with a very mild sell off which seems quite natural given then rapid pace of gains in Q1. Then just as stocks were bouncing back towards the highs we got served up a unwelcome CPI report on Wednesday that had investors hitting the sell button once again.

Unfortunately, year over year inflation increased from a 3.2% reading last month to 3.5% this time around. Yes, that is the wrong direction as we want to continue on our glide path towards the Fed’s target of 2%.

We all know that inflation rarely moves in a straight line. But this was not the first inflation report above expectations…but it certainly was the most resounding negative that investors could not dismiss.

The nerds out there (like myself) will note that the Sticky Inflation readings got even worse. That reading went up to 5% based upon the month to month change from the previous 4%. There is simply no way the Fed can look at this recent data and decide to lower rates in May…June…and probably not July.

The world of investors most certainly agreed with this notion given the seismic moves in the bond market. Most notable was the 10 year Treasury rate spiking to nearly 4.6% on Wednesday. That cooled down a notch on Thursday given the “slightly” better than expected reading for PPI.

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This greatly changes expectations for the timing of the first Fed rate cut. A month ago there was 72% probability of that taking place in June. That is now down to 22%.

Moving out to July that was considered a near slam dunk at 90% odds of lower rates. That is now a coin toss at just 49% likelihood.

Finally, we see the September meeting coming in at 70% odds of lower rates. This all points to investors going over the May 1st Fed testimony with a microscope looking for even the smallest clues of what comes next.

Long story short, I think it is borderline insane for investors to expect new highs for stocks until inflation is better under wraps and certainty increases on the timing of the first rate cut. That points to the recent high of 5,265 for the S&P 500 (SPY) as being the top end of current trading range.

The bottom of that range is a bit less clear. Will investors do more of a consolidation slightly under recent levels? The hearty bounce on Thursday seems to point in that direction. But the longer things go on without a resolution to the matter, the more we could break below the 50 day moving average at 5,105 and perhaps give 5,000 a serious test.

If that scares you, then might I recommend you put your money in the bank rather than the stock market.

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The only way you can enjoy the reward of a 27% gain for the S&P 500 since late October is by taking the risk that comes with mild pullbacks and tougher corrections from time to time. Meaning that testing 5,000 or even lower would be a yawn in the history of stock market movements which has improved our net worth considerably over the past few months…years…decades…generations…and so on.

My trading plan is to remain bullish. Just have a better eye towards the value of your positions. If you wouldn’t buy more shares of those stocks today…then perhaps time to sell and add new stocks that you feel have better upside potential.

That also calls for a “buy the dip” mentality as there likely will be more volatility and rough sessions ahead. Those are the times to step in and add shares of your favorite stocks.

All in all, we are moving back to a more normal bull market. Where 2 steps forward and 1 step back is just part of the dance. So, all the more reason to find the beat and dance right along.

What To Do Next?

Discover my current portfolio of 12 stocks packed to the brim with the outperforming benefits found in our exclusive POWR Ratings model. (Nearly 4X better than the S&P 500 going back to 1999)

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This includes 5 under the radar small caps recently added with tremendous upside potential.

Plus I have 1 special ETF that is incredibly well positioned to outpace the market in the weeks and months ahead.

This is all based on my 43 years of investing experience seeing bull markets…bear markets…and everything between.

If you are curious to learn more, and want to see these lucky 13 hand selected trades, then please click the link below to get started now.

Steve Reitmeister’s Trading Plan & Top Picks >

Wishing you a world of investment success!

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Steve Reitmeister…but everyone calls me Reity (pronounced “Righty”)
CEO, StockNews.com and Editor, Reitmeister Total Return


SPY shares were trading at $515.01 per share on Friday morning, down $2.99 (-0.58%). Year-to-date, SPY has gained 8.69%, versus a % rise in the benchmark S&P 500 index during the same period.


About the Author: Steve Reitmeister

Inflation Not Fading Fast Enough for Stock Investors

Steve is better known to the StockNews audience as “Reity”. Not only is he the CEO of the firm, but he also shares his 40 years of investment experience in the Reitmeister Total Return portfolio. Learn more about Reity’s background, along with links to his most recent articles and stock picks.

More…

The post Inflation Not Fading Fast Enough for Stock Investors appeared first on StockNews.com

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High Sport Skeptics Have Entered the Chat

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High Sport Skeptics Have Entered the Chat

If you are plugged into fashion discourse, you’ve probably heard about High Sport Kick Pant by now (perhaps against your will). They are stretch ponte trousers with a cropped flare above the ankle and pleats down the center of the legs. Sturdier than leggings and distinctly more polished. The intrigue around these pants reached a fever pitch on Substack in late 2023 – early 2024. The Kick Pant has developed a cult following, but skepticism has started to mount.

Substack, the newsletter platform, is integral to the phenomenon of High Sport. It’s where fashion influencers and ex-editors with large followings raved about the pants to their readers. Several glowing endorsements were published within a short time span. Word spread like wildfire within the platform’s ecosystem. Substack writer Rachel Solomon of Hey Mrs. Solomon describes the High Sport pants as a “fireball” item that seemed to “materialize out of nowhere.” She believes the hype is tied to the inherent “miracle potential” of pants, which are extra compelling because “the ass/thigh area is so important when it comes to fit and use case.” People will pay a lot for pants that make their butt look good.

“The chatter about these pants on Substack chat was non-stop,” says the writer of Totally Recommend, a self-described “recovering marketing CEO” who goes by Rufina. Her assessment of the situation? It seemed like no one beyond fashion writers and influencers actually owned the High Sport pants, yet everyone was hunting for alternatives. “I realized we were all searching for dupes without even knowing what the originals were truly like. That’s when my curiosity really kicked in. I knew I had to get my hands on these pants,” Rufina states.

Vi Huynh wears a thrifted version of the High Sport pants;

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Courtesy of Vi Huynh

1712933763 594 High Sport Skeptics Have Entered the Chat

Vi Huynh wears a thrifted version of the High Sport pants;

Courtesy of Vi Huynh

Solomon and Rufina both bought the pants and wrote about them on their Substacks. Both writers gave their honest opinions on everyone’s burning question: are they worth it? And, of course, where can one find a good dupe? Rufina’s review series, “The Scoop On The High Sport Dupe,” made the Substack rounds for its thorough list of dupes from Ann Mashburn, Donni, and Spanx to Banana Republic, Old Navy, and J.Crew. More chatter ensued.

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Then, The Cut published a High Sport piece last month that laid bare the financial incentives for Substack writers recommending the High Sport pants with affiliate links. The public reception of the article drove the discourse around these pants towards suspicion. It reminded people of the importance of taking product recommendations with a grain of salt when someone stands to make a hefty commission.

High Sport skepticism has kindled on Substack—the same place where the fanfare began. This time, discourse around the pants are tinged with mixed feelings around the gray area of affiliate marketing and fashion writing. Kickbacks on the Kick Pant have soured the hype for many.

In her latest High Sport dupe post, Rufina ponders if we should aspire towards these pants in the first place: “Are they an unspoken application to an elite club, where the entry fee is a slim waist, a fat bank account, and a life elegantly soaring above the mundane irritations familiar to the rest of us?” Readers resonated with this perspective. The comment section contemplated the writers’ ability to make $135 per sale via affiliate links on a rave review. “For some people, these pants might still be their top pick, fitt ing their style and budget. But knowing about the commission thing bursts the bubble,” Rufina continues. Solomon reflects on how the High Sport hype has played out. “I have noticed a little more skepticism, almost like we can all suddenly breathe a sigh of relief and go…wait, aren’t these just thick, hot pants that have a cute length?”

1712933763 870 High Sport Skeptics Have Entered the Chat

Vi Huynh wears a thrifted version of the High Sport pants;

Courtesy of Vi Huynh

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1712933763 528 High Sport Skeptics Have Entered the Chat

Rachel Solomon wears the High Sport Kick pants;

Courtesy of Rachel Solomon

Some have held a critical eye towards High Sport pants from the start. Em Seely Katz, news editor of Magasin and writer of Human Repeller, knows the nitty-gritty economics of luxury clothing production and marketing. “I know a pair of stretch pants should not cost nearly a grand without a 1000% or so markup,” Seely-Katz reveals.

When vintage seller Vi Huynh first saw the High Sport pants, the “egregious price point” stopped her from what would have been an immediate purchase otherwise. Huynh keeps up with niche fashion discourse and believes that High Sport’s brand strategy relies on the appeal of “quiet luxury” rather than a truly superior material product. “They don’t need regular people buying their pants. They’re saying: we’re the Loro Piana of stretch pants,” she continues.

Despite the skepticism around price point and kickbacks, the appetite for High Sport dupes has not waned. Seely-Katz has been diligently researching mid-price-range dupes in response to the Magasin readership’s interest. For example, they say that Sézane’s new gingham pants (around $200) are just as worthy of wear as the originals. Huynh maintains that the High Sport look is easy to find at thrift stores due to the popularity of ponte pants during the 90s and 2000s. Her advice? Focus on material—while rayon, polyester, and spandex blends are common, the better quality ones feel thick to the touch and retain shape when stretched.

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However, High Sport diehards maintain that the dupes are incomparable to the original. Writer Jess Graves of The Love List reports that the material from Old Navy and Donni versions were “flimsy and thin,” a far cry from High Sport’s “thick Italian knit that holds you in.” Graves, who purchased the High Sports with her own money, wears the pants “so often the cost per wear is probably around a dollar at this point.”

High Sport Skeptics Have Entered the Chat

Ruffina wears a dupe of the High Sport pants;

Courtesy of Rufina

1712933763 874 High Sport Skeptics Have Entered the Chat

Vi Huynh wears a thrifted version of the High Sport pants;

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Courtesy of Vi Huynh

Unlike Instagram, Substack is still a relatively new space where the norms of affiliate marketing—and how consumers can expect to engage with it—are still taking shape. One can find a broad mix of fashion content, from personal essays and styling tips to shopping-driven posts heavy on affiliate links. Perhaps it is due to this broad spectrum of how and when writers participate in affiliate marketing that pinpointed skepticism towards High Sport pants in a way that may not have materialized on, say, Instagram.

Seely-Katz, who does use affiliate links on Human Repeller, emphasizes that they have built trust with their readers in terms of how they disclose commissions. “People who read my newsletter know that I emphatically don’t go out of my way to center affiliate links, many of my posts having none at all […] I am thoughtful about what products I endorse, no matter the price point,” they state. Graves echoes this sentiment. She views affiliate income as compensation for the work of content creation. In regards to her Substack, “my readers get that if I am publishing something without a paywall, affiliate links are a way to help me accrue some payment for that time spent. I don’t let it sway my editorial decisions though,” Graves notes. Rufina does not use affiliate links but acknowledges that with the instability of the media landscape, “It’s really tricky for me to say how writers should be making their money.” As a former advertising professional, her main concern was seeing High Sport purchase links posted without an affiliate disclaimer.

Ultimately, the story of High Sport reveals how Substack is becoming an increasingly robust ecosystem for launching status-y products that go viral within a subset of fashion consumers. Seely-Katz describes the phenomenon as a “self-fulfilling prophecy,” where people who buy such items are more likely to broadcast them in their publications, “creating an illusion that literally everyone is buying this stuff.”

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