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  1. #1
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    Talking Link encryption-will it work
    On web searches I don't ever see straight affiliate links come up high on the search results anymore on Google.

    It seems like the search engines are getting rid of affiliate links.

    I wonder what would happen if your affiliate links were encrypted on your site so that the search engines would not see them as an affiliate link - or be able to follow the links?

    Any ideas????

  2. #2
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    No opinions???????

  3. #3
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    Come on now - don't be shy.

    I'm sure that there are several different opinions about this.

    I'm sure that a lot of the people on the ABW would like to know what you think about this - not just me.

  4. #4
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    I got an e-mail from Niche today that said that they were changing all of the links for their affiliates to encrypted links. They said that that should keep the search engines from knowing the link is an affiliate link.

    Do you agree with this?

    They also said that they will no longer use cookies to track affiliates with. From now on they will track affiliate sales with their data base instead of a cookie since cookies get deleted or over written.

    What do you think??????

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador mailman's Avatar
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    This might be off the topic but search engines have changed in the last couple of years. Have you noticed that when you search out a word you land on a page and what do you see. "SPONSOR RESULTS". Then you are given a few sites followed by more "SPONSOR RESULTS. It's all about money now and paid for location. How many times do you type in a word and see ebay listed? I don't think there is a true unbaised search engine out there anymore.

  6. #6
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    Come on Gordon - I know that you must have something to say about this.

    And what about Tarpon Springs. I know you have some thoughts about this too.

    And I would be rude if I didn't mention Chet also. How about it Chet.

    Let's hear it for Chet.

    We are not talking about any black hat here - no cookie over writing - no hidden frames or new windows to set cookies etc.

  7. #7
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    I put a new site out about two months ago with all straight affiliate links.

    Google and MSN come to the site every day and have indexed all of the pages on the site that I have out so far.

    On MSN all of the pages come up number 1, 2, or 3 for the page key words.

    On Google They don't come up at all.

    Google and MSN both have ads on their search results.

  8. #8
    Not Verif-Lidated infoTim's Avatar
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    Even an encrypted link "looks like" an affiliate link, you just can't tell (as easily) where it's headed and who gets credit.

    I cloak my link and have my cloaking servlet in robots.txt, but it's more for aesthetics and stopping the bots from crawling the links unecessarily than anything else.

    None of that addresses if Cruel Mistress G is somehow targeting affiliate sites though. Is she? Your guess is as good as mine.
    Tim
    consultant by day, affiliate by night

  9. #9
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    I have heard or read that search engines cannot follow a link past a ?. I don't know if it's true or not, but if it is true why couldn't you have your links as follows:

    image?t35di39fkt9w8skdfo4

    cart.html?m4ik48fkdm3lk39dkd5

    Would the question mark in the link keep them from following the link?

    Does anyone know if the thing about search engines not going past a ? is true or not.

  10. #10
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    How about it TrustNo1 - you always have something to say.

    What do you think?

  11. #11
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    Gordon - I've never know you to be speechless before.

    That leaves me speechless.

  12. #12
    pph Expert! Gordon's Avatar
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    I really do not know enough about this to be able to give an answer that I would know or even think to be correct. All I could say is on the face of it it sounds like a reasonable idea but whether it actually is a good idea or not I would rather leave to a better qualified person to chime in with an answer.

    I think someone like Markymark is probably one of ABW's better qualified SE guys with a bit of luck he might chip in here and let us know.

    [edited to add] LOL I'm not speechless, with a bit of luck that will never happen to me
    I just do not know an answer so rather than make a bigger goof of myself than I already have done in the past I will keep stum on this one and let a better educated person answer
    One day parasites and their ilk will be made illegal, I bet a few Lawyers will be pissed off when the day comes.
    Mr. Spitzer is fetching it nearer

    YouTrek

  13. #13
    ABW Ambassador
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    "It seems like the search engines are getting rid of affiliate links."

    I think you're wrong

  14. #14
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    Why do you think that TrustNo1?

  15. #15
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    ecomcity,

    What do you think? You always seem to have some good ideas.

  16. #16
    ABW Ambassador
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    "Why do you think that TrustNo1?"

    Because i can go to Google and see it. This doesn't even come on my radar. I just copy and paste the links onto my site and have never seen any problems.

  17. #17
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    TrustNo1 - do your sites still rank in Google where they always have with no drop in ranking?

  18. #18
    ABW Ambassador
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    I have pages that rank great, i have pages that don't rank great. All the links are done in the same way.

  19. #19
    Not Verif-Lidated infoTim's Avatar
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    The ? is no barrier to link following. I have pages with ? parameters indexed in Yagoomsn.
    Tim
    consultant by day, affiliate by night

  20. #20
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    Can search engines decode encoded links?

  21. #21
    notary sojac Herb ԿԬ's Avatar
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    I see postings in webmaster forums about google delivering new sites to visitors for a little while then putting them in limbo for quite a while as if this solves something about how many incoming links the site has.

    I have a couple of sites that are new and one is getting help from google and another is virtually dead in the water.


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  22. #22
    A Real *and* Darn Cool Member! lstolze's Avatar
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    I wish I had some worthwhile input on this, but I don't. Although I have been wondering why my page has dropped off in Google. We used to have product linksok that put us right on the first page or second, and now I have to dig to find our site! We still get okay traffic, but at this point, it seems to be a large number of returning visitors - which is good, but new visitors are always appreciated! I have some links encrypted, some not. But it would be interesting to know if your suspicions are valid. Our page ranking hasn't seemed to drop (we have tons of link exchanges out there), but I'm very concerned about good, old-fashioned searches. Certainly can't trust my financial security to link exchanges.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by BurgerBoy
    I have heard or read that search engines cannot follow a link past a ?. I don't know if it's true or not, but if it is true why couldn't you have your links as follows:

    image?t35di39fkt9w8skdfo4

    cart.html?m4ik48fkdm3lk39dkd5

    Would the question mark in the link keep them from following the link?

    Does anyone know if the thing about search engines not going past a ? is true or not.
    I got to wondering this myself, so I did some research. At marketingleap.com, I found the following:

    Search engines have problems crawling links contained in dynamic HTML, Javascript and Flash based pages. These technologies use languages and commands that a search engine spider can't easily travel through. When a search engine sees one of these dynamic elements, it will usually stop crawling any deeper into your website.
    And considering characters contained within links:

    When these content management programs deliver information back to a web browser the links they create often contain many of the snippets of code they are using to assemble a page on the fly. This might include characters such as "?, $, @, %, &".
    When a search engine tries to read a dynamic link, it often stops when it encounters the characters that dynamic publishing systems use to deliver a page. This means that a search engine cannot easily crawl and index the website. This means that fewer pages of your website will be indexed by a search engine. This in turn means you will show up in fewer search results.
    The preceding information can be found at http://www.marketleap.com/help/seo101/dynamicsites.htm along with web search engine marketing tools.
    "Whether you think you can, or whether you think you can't...You're right!" -Henry Ford-

  24. #24
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    The site is not a dynamic site that I'm working on now. All of the pages are static in the site and all of the links to the pages in the site are in html.

    The only links that are being encoded are the links to the merchant image and buy url.

    I'm wanting to stop the search engines from following those links to the merchant site.

    Do you think that that will make a difference?

    Hopefully, the search engines can follow all of the regular html links to all of the static pages in the site but will not be able to follow the merchant links and establish that they are affiliate links.

    Does this make any sense?

  25. #25
    Not Verif-Lidated infoTim's Avatar
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    Once apon a time, links with parameters (?) in them were problematic for the search crawlers, but I don't see that anymore. They've gotten reasonably savvy about following them properly. I don't see any problems with these kind of links getting crawled or showing up in search results.
    Tim
    consultant by day, affiliate by night

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