Skyscraper launched last year as a pretty straightforward blog advertising service with a focus on helping bloggers make money through direct ad sales. That’s still a main part of its business, and it is currently serving up more than 1.5 million ads every day, but as its co-founder Paul Burger told me last week, the company’s focus is slowly shifting to becoming a full-service blog monetization service that “covers all bases.” Until today, Skyscraper was only available as a closed beta, but it’s now open for all.
Today, Skyscraper is also launching its integration with VigLink, a service that helps publishers turn their links to retailers into affiliate links without the need to sign up for all of the 30,000 retailers the service currently supports. Thanks to the partnership between the two services, turning this service on will take just a few clicks for existing Skyscraper users.
As Burger noted when I talked to him, this is just a first step in Skyscraper’s shift to offering a broader range of services. The team, which has now grown to four after the company raised a $500,000 seed round last year (and added a few vowels to its name in the process), realized that, while direct-ad sales are important for independent publishers, most use a variety of methods to monetize their sites. To do so, most use a multitude of services and constantly switch back and forth between them. In the long run, Skyscraper wants to become a dashboard for all of these services as it expands its offerings. One area Skyscraper is thinking about in addition to the VigLink integration, for example, is sponsored posts.
With today’s launch, Skyscraper is also making its new WordPress plug-in available for download, which will make it even easier for the vast majority of bloggers to get started on the service. One nifty feature of the plug-in is that it not only makes the integration easier, but also installs a widgetized version of Skyscraper’s media kit that bloggers can use on their “Advertise Here” pages to funnel potential ad clients directly to Skyscraper.