I’ve had (and probably fallen for) this kind of temptation myself – but think its probably the blog and your readers who suffer most for it.
I was just surfing by this blog and was struck by the layout there (screen capture above – click to enlarge).
The screen capture is of an individual archive page that I surfed into from an RSS feed. When I got to the actual site I found myself asking ‘where’s the content?’ (it reminded me of one of those ‘Where’s Wally/Waldo books’). Perhaps its just my screen size (15 inch) but as you’ll see from my screen capture the content’s heading was the only part of the content to show above the fold – the rest of the page was almost completely affiliate links (hidden as recommended reading), cross promotion to other parts of the network and ads.
Once again – I too feel the temptation to smother some of my blogs in ads and on some of them could be accused of similar tactics – but I wonder what it does for building a loyal repeat readership? To be honest coming to a page like this doesn’t inspire me to come back – not because of the content (they often have good stuff there) but simply because it is so hidden amongst the rest of what the page has.
My recommendation to bloggers is always to work on content – provide relevant and useful information for your readers – put it in a clearly identifiable and easily found position and don’t fall for the temptation of the quick easy buck.