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  1. #1
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    So, are the scripts worth it?
    I've been looking around and am impressed with the quality of the scripts. I am thinking of trying the Amazon script, but there are droves of other affiliates targeting Amazon also.

    Do the scripts pretty much pay for themselves using standard seo practices and such?

    How about a rough guesstimate of how long it took (on average) for the script to pay for itself? I'm kinda strapped for cash at the present, and don't want to spend a lot of time developing a website using a script that I can't afford at the end of the 30-day trial.

    But they look soooo dang good!
    "Whether you think you can, or whether you think you can't...You're right!" -Henry Ford-

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador Snib's Avatar
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    I have a friend who used an Amazon script on his site that was established for about 6 or 7 years. Google immediately scooped it up and sent him thousands of dollars in sales each day. Now that Google has become keen to the Amazon datafeeds, he's lucky if he makes $200/month in commissions. Considering this, I'm doubtful that a new website can even scrape together that much. Now if you plan on running some PPC on specific categories and products, you might do okay. I just think the days of getting free traffic using only this feed are numbered.

    - Scott
    Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.

  3. #3
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    I was under the impression that Amazon didn't publish feeds. Their affiliate specs speak strongly about only using their API dynamically.

    Could the Google issue be that's it's being finicky about Amazon affiliate links?

    - Richard Gaskin
    Last edited by FourthWorld; May 10th, 2005 at 11:44 AM.

  4. #4
    Crazy Cat Lady Heidi's Avatar
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    Its the Amazon XML Feed and all the data is pulled dynamically from Amazon.

    I still think this particular script is well worth the money. If you work it into your existing sites in unique ways, you can still make major money with it.

    I've not had any problem with Google and the Amazon affiliate links, but I work the script into content sites with highly targetted products being featured/promoted.
    Heidi
    "Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price to make them come true"

  5. #5
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    Could the links be the obstacle?
    Snib (Scott) said:

    I have a friend who used an Amazon script on his site that was established for about 6 or 7 years. Google immediately scooped it up and sent him thousands of dollars in sales each day. Now that Google has become keen to the Amazon datafeeds, he's lucky if he makes $200/month in commissions.
    Then Richard chimed in with:

    Could the Google issue be that's it's being finicky about Amazon affiliate links?
    And last, but not least, Heidi observed:

    Its the Amazon XML Feed and all the data is pulled dynamically from Amazon.
    These statements lead me to conclude that Google doesn't like the basic Amazon XML link structure, perhaps because there are so many associates using the xml dynamic link structure.

    The basic link structure looks something like: http://www.buy-here-and-save.com/cgi...rch=0761135480

    Do you think that if you use a .htaccess redirect using your domain name and associated text such as http:// www mysite.com/cupcakesbook that redirected to the http://www.buy-here-and-save.com/cgi...rch=0761135480 dynamic link, if Google would view the link as being static versus dynamic...and rank the link accordingly?

    And, using such a redirect, would your Amazon affiliate ID still be recognized by Amazon, but not penalized or recognized by Google as being a dynamic link?
    "Whether you think you can, or whether you think you can't...You're right!" -Henry Ford-

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador cusimano's Avatar
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    Associate Engine supports mod_rewrite so that links appear static. See Virtual Directory.

    /cgi-bin/ae.pl?asinsearch=0761135480 would appear instead as /amazon/asinsearch_0761135480 (you can use a different directory than /amazon if you prefer, such as /shop).

    Yours truly,
    Cusimano.Com Corporation
    per: David Cusimano

  7. #7
    Crazy Cat Lady Heidi's Avatar
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    Google has no problems with the xml link structure - if anybody's earnings went down its because of the competition and those who are better able to optimize their pages. Its not related to the XML - My earnings at amazon are higher than they have ever been.

    If I remember correctly Snib is the same one who said datafeeds and webmerge are dead - he's real good at trying to discourage people from using scripts and datafeeds - too much competition for his liking.
    Heidi
    "Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price to make them come true"

  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador Snib's Avatar
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    Smile
    Quote Originally Posted by Heidi
    If I remember correctly Snib is the same one who said datafeeds and webmerge are dead - he's real good at trying to discourage people from using scripts and datafeeds - too much competition for his liking.
    It's not that. I'm just telling it like it is. Google doesn't like straight datafeed sites. You need to add considerable value and unique content in order to rank well. It's just not as effective as it was before to create a datafeed only site. I'm trying to encourage higher quality websites and more value on the internet. If everybody continues to build cookie cutter websites, what value does that add? I'd like to see more innovation and information. I don't think any datafeed site is competition for me because I use entirely different methods of traffic generation. I'm only trying to help.

    - Scott
    Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.

  9. #9
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    It depends on what you mean by "worth it". I started with Google Ads directly to Amazon pages, now my sales are almost exclusively through my AE sites. I get some organic traffic from Yahoo, nothing from Google. I'm doing "more that $200 per month" since February, but I'm using PPC...

    They have been worth it to me...

  10. #10
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    Thanks, David, Heidi, and Scott.
    I did a little digging and I like the mod_rewrite that David pointed out.
    I believe I'll give it a shot.

    Heidi...thanks for your observations. It's always helpful when someone points out a tree that I might have missed when I was looking at the forest!

    Scott..I think both you and Heidi are right. Google doesn't like cookie-cutter websites with the same link structure and basic content. So I'll change things around. Mix content and links. I know you were only trying to help. You've given myself and others insight that might otherwise been missed. Keep on posting, I'll keep on reading.

    Here's a tip of the hat to ya'll for helping out. You know the old saying: "What comes around goes around".
    "Whether you think you can, or whether you think you can't...You're right!" -Henry Ford-

  11. #11
    Crazy Cat Lady Heidi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snib
    Google doesn't like straight datafeed sites. You need to add considerable value and unique content in order to rank well.
    - Scott
    More like - YOU don't like straight datafeed sites - Google has no problem/issue with my straight datafeed sites and many others who frequent this board.

    The only time I've had problems on any of my datafeed sites is when I got hit by those 302 Redirects from the site sucking jerks and this has happened on my content sites as well as my straight datafeed sites - so it doesn't matter how unique you are if someone comes along and sucks you dry with that google hole.
    Heidi
    "Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price to make them come true"

  12. #12
    Action Jackson - King of the World
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    I also have not seen any evidence of what Snib is suggesting. I think there are so many conspiracy theories out there, when oftentimes it prolly is just a matter of not doing what the search engines are looking for. Also bear in mind that Google is not the only search engine.

  13. #13
    ABW Ambassador Snib's Avatar
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    Here's a great analysis of Google's Patent:

    http://www.wwwcoder.com/main/parenti...6/default.aspx

    This explains in detail what I'm trying to say. I'm really just basing all my claims on what Google is doing or plans to do in the future.

    - Scott
    Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.

  14. #14
    Action Jackson - King of the World
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    I actually saw this link earlier today. This of course depends on whether you accept what this guy says as Gospel. Also this doesn't touch on the other search engines.

  15. #15
    Crazy Cat Lady Heidi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snib

    This explains in detail what I'm trying to say. I'm really just basing all my claims on what Google is doing or plans to do in the future.
    I especially liked one of the comments at the end of the page:

    Left on 5/9/2005 2:47:21 PM by Anonymous
    Comments: I looked over the Google patent application. One of the salient facts about the application is that it was filed 12/31/03, with origins going back to 9/30/03. Given this topic relates to what I understand is a dynamic cataloging technology, the fact that the patent application is over 18 months old (not 2 mos. old as the article indicates) limits the relevance of this analysis.

    Considering that none of this has come from the "Horses Mouth" so to speak - meaning Google - you are just assuming things you really have no idea about.

    If they really wanted to clean up spam, they would do something about the 302 redirect site hijackers and some of the other crap that is out there that is much worse than datafeed sites.
    Heidi
    "Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price to make them come true"

  16. #16
    ABW Ambassador Snib's Avatar
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    Here are a couple more articles:

    http://www.wolf-howl.com/2005/04/goo...-analysis.html

    http://www.zanesvillebride.com/resou...googlealgo.htm

    I'm leaving out Yahoo and MSN in this discussion because they don't account for the amount of traffic Google can produce. I believe Yahoo and MSN use older search engine techniques, so they're much more accepting of spammy websites.

    In any event, it's best to build your pages for your users and work on word of mouth traffic. Search Engine traffic will always follow closely behind.

    - Scott
    Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.

  17. #17
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    The answers here need to be qualified with how long people have been using ae.pl. My first site went up in Dec 2004 and I have just reached the point when I am making more than $99 a month from it.

    Be more careful of the free scripts - not only are lots of people using them, some are poor candidates for being crawled. Look for implementations in the field and look at how much toolbar PR they show, whether their deeper pages show any PR, etc.

  18. #18
    Action Jackson - King of the World
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snib
    I'm leaving out Yahoo and MSN in this discussion because they don't account for the amount of traffic Google can produce.
    - Scott
    This is definitely not true. I have sites getting the majority of traffic from either msn or Yahoo that is even surpassing any google traffic I ever got. And google still has tons of spammy websites listed, it matters not if the site is affiliate or not. Google is still ranking several affiliate sites very highly. Sounds like you need to work on your SEO and backlinks

  19. #19
    Crazy Cat Lady Heidi's Avatar
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    I've been using the amazon script since at least January of 2002 I believe. The more ways I come up with to integrate it into my sites, the better I do with Amazon. Creativity is the Key I think and really learning how to modify the templates so they don't look like every one elses site.
    Heidi
    "Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price to make them come true"

  20. #20
    ABW Ambassador netnow22's Avatar
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    Thumbs up AMazon Script
    I have been using the amazon script for exactly a year now. I made over $9000 using thier script. The key to using thier script to rank well within the se's is simple. Use the Mod Rewrite function to change your URL's to static pages. Also use the dyanmic titles function.

    Wish You Well!
    Jason Bishop

  21. #21
    Action Jackson - King of the World
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    Hi Jason:

    Could you tell me how I go about doing that? Right now my links are the cgi-bin versioon

  22. #22
    ABW Ambassador cusimano's Avatar
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    To use mod_rewrite with Associate Engine, see Virtual Directory.

    Yours truly,
    Cusimano.Com Corporation
    per: David Cusimano

  23. #23
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    I think it is worth it
    If you use a mod rewrite and the script allows for tag alterations and template alterations then the script is probably worth it. There are many free scripts out there and some are good but this is one of the better payed scripts I have seen in a while.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heidi
    More like - YOU don't like straight datafeed sites - Google has no problem/issue with my straight datafeed sites and many others who frequent this board.
    If you haven't heard of the leaked Google site evaluation document, see "Google's Unknown Spam Recognition Guide" at www.searchbistro.com and see their definition of "Thin Affiliate" sites.

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