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  1. #1
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    The Biggest Changes in Affiliate Bus. this Decade?
    (Best or Worst)


    I'm just curious; looking back at the affiliate-related business, what events/changes over the past 10 years has made the biggest impact? I haven't been doing this for 10 years, but I don't think that 8 years ago there was the constant threat of parasitic behavior.

    What about databases and webmerge type programs? How long have they been around?
    leeann


    Shoppers determine what has value and they like coupons. Stop manipulating who set the cookie just because you do not like coupon and promotional sites.

  2. #2
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    The biggest change was the Google Florida update in the winter of 2004-2005. Until then it was a lot easier to make money as an affiliate.

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  3. #3
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    Adsense - literally overnight you had people with content sites that weren't doing too good with affiliate linka, tried Adsense and the money came rolling in. CJ even mentioned Adsense for their ridiculous CJ link initiative where at first they were going to have every single link, a javascript link. That still blows my mind how that even saw the light of day. But with enough uproar, they made it an option instead. If they went thru with that, it would have been the worst decision in affiliate marketing history.

    "but I don't think that 8 years ago there was the constant threat of parasitic behavior."

    Was actually worse. Back in 2001 there was a Merchant Boycott - http://www.prweb.com/releases/2001/12/prweb30930.htm

    And I remember back in 2001, before I got into this business and still was trying to figure out how to make a site, they were really bad. Straight up switching out id's, redirecting traffic, I used to use Gator to fill in forms and that program would literally throw a banner on top of mine, music download software came bundled with adware, a lot of crazy stuff. There's still some stuff out but I think it was much worse.

  4. #4
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BurgerBoy
    The biggest change was the Google Florida update in the winter of 2004-2005. Until then it was a lot easier to make money as an affiliate.
    This page talks about it for those who do not know about it.
    http://www.webworkshop.net/florida-update.html
    leeann


    Shoppers determine what has value and they like coupons. Stop manipulating who set the cookie just because you do not like coupon and promotional sites.

  5. #5
    Beachy Bill's Avatar
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    Looks like we've got one of each posted so far - a worst (for affiliates, but maybe not for consumers) and a best. I'll have to go with AdSense, too. For me, at least, it was a rather simple way to pick up some extra (serious) income.
    Bill / Marketing Blog @ 12PM - Current project: Resurrecting my "baby" at South Baltimore..
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  6. #6
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    I agree with BurgerBoy about the Florida update. It was a big slap in the face from Google to all affiliates. Business has never been the same after that.

    "changes over the past 10 years" We should not forget the dot.com burst in 1999/2000. It started 10 years ago. An other disaster for affiliates. My relationship with LinkShare has never been the same after 2000. They kept serving links and tracking sales for bankrupted merchants for months. I lost a fortune because of that.

  7. #7
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    State Sales Tax policies ...

  8. #8
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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  9. #9
    Analytics Dude Kevin's Avatar
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    Best: Wordpress. Allows you to focus on marketing and delivering sales copy and content without being an SEO wiz or too much of a programmer. Blogging re-energized some merchants enthusiasm for the affiliate channel, and gave OPM's and AM's a like a vast new talent pool to recruit from.

    Worst: Wordpress. Too many tools that can be used to auto generate affiliate websites that provide little value, and, like above, gave that capability to non-SEO/non-programmer individuals. Exploded the spamiverse, and soaked up SERPs instantly and without merit.
    Kevin Webster
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  10. #10
    ShareASale President/CEO and ABW Veteran Brian - ShareASale's Avatar
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    I recently posted a list on my blog - and should have included Google Florida definitely.

    My post was more about "moments", but in terms of changes to the industry - I'd have to say that the birth of CPA networks, Sales tax policies, and the introduction of PPC into search engines were all pretty huge.

    Adsense, I would argue, was a negative.
    Thanks,

    Brian Littleton
    President/CEO - ShareASale.com, Inc.

  11. #11
    Analytics Dude Kevin's Avatar
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    I should add that my post was a complement to the others already here. I don't necessarily put Wordpress (or any CMS) ahead of FLA, or Adsense etc.

    I do believe it's had a MASSIVE IMPACT however.
    Kevin Webster
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