Results 1 to 6 of 6
  1. #1
    Newbie
    Join Date
    February 10th, 2005
    Posts
    28
    Unhappy Drop in commissions; link and commission hijacking?
    (Amazon.com Associate Engine v5.11.22-beta)

    I have seen my affiliate commissions drop markedly in the last 6 months and also the actual conversion rate of those who do go through to Amazon.com go from about 6% or 7% to about .6% in the same time period.

    I am interested whether (and how) my links may be hijacked and someone else is taking my commissions and what could be done to prevent this or even find out if this is happening.

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador cusimano's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Toronto, Canada
    Posts
    1,369
    Parasiteware/scumware is a general issue relating to the entire affiliate industry; it is not specific to AE or amazon.com. See the Parasiteware forums here at ABestWeb.com; go to http://forum.abestweb.com and scroll down to the "ParasiteWare" blue heading.

    You might want to add the free parasiteware detector from DoxDesk.com to all your webpages, including your AE template. See http://www.doxdesk.com/software/js/parasite.html

    FYI, DySE supports the DoxDesk.com detector. See instructions.

    Yours truly,
    Cusimano.Com Corporation
    per: David Cusimano

  3. #3
    Newbie
    Join Date
    February 10th, 2005
    Posts
    28
    Thanks. I know it is not AE/Amazon.com specific, just want to solve the darn problem.

    Can you clarify whether apart from user-based IExplorer/PC bugs, any website has the ability to snag traffic from my site, and gain the referral commissions independent of any user? (I know of now such program)

    I appreciate the link. However as interesting and useful as it appears, the likelihood of any person taking any notice of our recipe book website telling them that their PC is infected with a malicious piece of software, that they would then remove it and continue shopping with us for us to gain our Amazon.com commission, is unlikely in the extreme.

  4. #4
    Full Member jazzylee77's Avatar
    Join Date
    February 19th, 2005
    Posts
    199
    Quote Originally Posted by forefront
    the likelihood of any person taking any notice of our recipe book website telling them that their PC is infected with a malicious piece of software, that they would then remove it and continue shopping with us for us to gain our Amazon.com commission, is unlikely in the extreme.
    ...especially if you don't install it.

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador cusimano's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Toronto, Canada
    Posts
    1,369
    I'm not an expert on parasiteware. Users in ABestWeb's ParasiteWare forum can probably answer your questions better. Nevertheless....

    I'm sure that the entire affiliate industry wants to solve the problem. But it's not a simple problem. Parasiteware/scumware/spyware (known in general as "parasiteware") can be installed with or without the users permission/knowledge. I've seen several friends' and relatives' computers with pesky popups.

    The problem is mainly (if not entirely) with Windows computers running Internet Explorer. Any determined programmer can write a BHO (Internet Explorer Browser Helper Object) that scans the webpage that the user is currently viewing and modifies it in any way that it wants to, including modifying affiliate links. In terms of data flow, the BHO sits between the internet and the user, everything passes through the BHO: website > BHO > user's screen. Thus the BHO can do anything. That means that BHO's can do a lot of useful good stuff and also a lot of unethical bad stuff. You as the webmaster of your website cannot bypass the BHO's on a user's computer. Only the user can remove/deactivate BHO's on their computer.

    BHO's and parasiteware get installed in various ways: bundled as part of "free" software/music, by "drive-by-download" (just visiting a website), virus, etc.

    What can users do? Keep their computer up-to-date, install anti-virus software, install anti-spyware sofware such as Microsoft AntiSpyware.

    What can webmasters do? Not much, other than install parasiteware detectors (such as from DoxDesk.com) on their webpages. If you know Javascript, you could modify the detector and have it jump to a URL (such as Microsoft Antispyware page) instead of showing a warning, thus the user wouldn't use your bandwidth and would be presented with that Microsoft page. You could also tell your friends to download antispyware software. Other than that, not much else you can do in terms of parasiteware.

    Parasiteware typically targets large merchants. So you may want to promote smaller merchants that may not be targetted. Most merchants these days are aware of the parasiteware problem and will cancel any affiliate accounts that they found out belong to parasiteware authors. But more sophisicated BHO's may use multiple affiliate ID's (so the parasiteware author appears to be many small affiliates and doesn't get noticed by the merchant as one big affiliate) or the BHO may overwrite affiliate ID's only some of the time (e.g.: 25% of the time).

    DySE supports DoxDesk.com's detector. To have all DySE generated webpages have the detector, simply upload the parasite.js and parasite-data.js files to the directory where DySE view.pl is located. All DySE pages will then have the detector. Again, you could modify the detector to jump to a URL instead of displaying a warning. For AE, add the detector to your AE template.

    Since this topic is about parasiteware, further discussion on this topic really should be continued in the ParasiteWare forums here at ABestWeb rather than in this forum. There are more knowledgeable people in those forums.

    Again, parasiteware is a problem that affects the entire affiliate industry and there is no simple solution.

    Yours truly,
    Cusimano.Com Corporation
    per: David Cusimano

  6. #6
    Full Member jazzylee77's Avatar
    Join Date
    February 19th, 2005
    Posts
    199
    Nice understandable summary! (and much more helpful than my late night comment) When the parasite experts talk it is so dense with acronyms and specialized lingo you can barely make out what their points are!

  7. Newsletter Signup

+ Reply to Thread

Similar Threads

  1. Allposters/Art.com Drop Commissions for Coupon Sites to 2.5%
    By tmartini in forum Couponer's Corner
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: October 27th, 2008, 09:57 PM
  2. Link Hijacking?
    By Kold Phusion in forum Programming / Datafeeds / Tools
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: June 10th, 2005, 01:50 PM
  3. Hijacking commissions with coupon codes
    By Whiznot in forum Midnight Cafe'
    Replies: 35
    Last Post: February 4th, 2004, 12:07 AM
  4. AOL is disgusting, hijacking my ebay link
    By tamalyn in forum Commission Junction - CJ
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: March 22nd, 2003, 12:56 AM
  5. Is BIZRATE.COM Hijacking my KBToys/Etoys Sales/Commission??
    By seaslug44 in forum Suspicious Activity!
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: December 9th, 2002, 12:36 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •