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  1. #1
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Am I Not Getting Something?
    Just got the following e-mail from an affiliate:

    ====================================
    Hi, as an affiliate of yours I would like to make a suggestion as to how to increase your sales through your affiliates. What I would like recommend is a link page. The reason I recommend a link page is to quote Google, “In general, webmasters can improve the rank of their sites by increasing the number of high-quality sites that link to their pages”.

    Your company qualifies as a quality site and higher ranking attracts more visitors. More visitors also make more sales. My URL is http://www.hisurlhere.com

    Thanking you in advance.
    C***** B*****
    ====================================


    Linking to him will increase my "sales through affiliates"?!

    Any other ShareASale merchants got anything similar from the "C.B." affiliate?

    Geno

  2. #2
    Influencer Marketing GravityFed's Avatar
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    Geno.. I think he means he would like the merchant authority site to help his affiliate site build link popularity, so that he ranks higher in the SERPs when promoting your products. We toyed with this idea when I was AM at Backcountry.com.. although for reasons you could prob. guess we decided against it..

    Gary M

  3. #3
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Gary,

    I do see what he is asking for, but it's not even a link exchange that he's talking about. He is telling me that my client's site qualifies to link to his site...

    Geno

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    Geno
    I actually do have several "reciprocal links" with sites I am affiliated with.(Although, I'm the one doing more of the reciprocal linking since I'm the affiliate and have more links to their site than theirs to mine lol ) I agree with Gary that's most likely what the affiliate is referring to. I've taken the time to email the merchant sites and explain to them that I am an affiliate with them just so they know and don't think that I'm trying to sneak through or anything lol and it hasn't made any difference to any of them. I don't go around asking any of my affiliate managers (although now that the subject's been brought up lol I'd love to exchange links with your sites. lol Just teasing )
    Guess when you think about it .....don't think it would hurt either site by doing so but I'm definitely no search engine genius. That's for sure.

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    I make a long post as usual lol and you've already posted again before I finished. lol Ummm never mind then with the explanation

  6. #6
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by purplebear
    Guess when you think about it .....don't think it would hurt either site by doing so but I'm definitely no search engine genius. That's for sure.
    Oh, K*****, I do not think it would hurt either one of us, and I would've maybe even considered it if it were put differently.

    However, when I get a message through an internal SaS system from one of my affiliates that tells me this site qualifies to link to his - not mentioning anything about the link exchange - I.... well, on some reason I do not feel like I have just been blessed.

    Should I be?

    This affiliate sent me 8 hits total, 2 last month, and 0 this month... Now he wants me to send my traffic to him for him to send it back to me, for them to buy from me? Hmmmmm....

    Again, I may not be getting something. But I do not like that wording, that approach (through an internal network's system), and neither do I see the potential in this relation...

    Geno

  7. #7
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    WTF, LOL
    What a bunch of spin... Pitch it in the bit bucket.

    Here's my opinion on this proposition.

    As for the factuality of the email, sure, you linking to him has a decent chance of increasing HIS RANK, and HIS SALES!
    It isn't going to do Jack good for you, though, and your other affs will be mad about a "leaks" page being on your site.

    And, ask yourself, who's he trying to boot from the high ranking in Google? You?

    The way it's written is slippery spin, too. The key is that he specified "through your affiliates" rather than just generically increasing overall sales. That tells me that he figures it WON'T increase overall sales--just make more sales commissionable.

    So, it's "factually true" but is written in a way to try to make you miss the REAL implications. Sure, he wants to catch some SERP rank (that's obvious), but I speculate that that's not all: He's probably also hoping that your uncookied customers will go to him through the links page, and then catch his cookie when they click back to you.

    I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole in any case.
    Even if his intentions are completely legit...it looks newbish for a merchant to have a links page, and having ways for your customers to go away (aka, LEAKS) is bad.

  8. #8
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    Wink
    I.... well, on some reason I do not feel like I have just been blessed.

    Should I be?
    You have been blessed.

    ...With the opportunity to read caca fit for a US politician.
    Delivered right to your SAS email, no less!

  9. #9
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    Links Pages and PageRank
    (1) We always planned to have a "links page," to link to other quotation sites, including many of our prospective and current affiliates. The link to the "links" page is included in our main left-navbar, so it appears on all pages. I view it as "content" first -- some relevant resources that people who find our site may want to explore, though I know few will do so.

    When I prepared the list of sites to be included, I checked each site's overall quality and relevance AND the pagerank for each site. I included all high-quality sites (including those with pagerank of 0-3), as well as "most" relevant sites with pagerank of 3 or higher. I did not request reciprocal links from the sites linked (though I realize now that I should have mentioned the link in our initial affiliate-recruitment emails).

    We don't plan to link to sites simply because they are our affiliates, nor simply to try to increase our pagerank. Everything on our site should be relevant and useful to our customers.

    (2) When we launched our affiliate program, we also created an "affiliate resources" page because many of the affiliate-directory sites require a return link; the link to this page appears at the bottom of our affiliate-info page, and nowhere else on our site.

    At the top of this list, we link to the directories that have listed our affiliate program; the rest appear beneath, and most of those will be removed over time as we verify that their sites are not being updated. (I started with a list of 100+ affiliate directory sites, and after only 10 days, fewer than 40 directories have survived.)

    I never considered PageRank as a factor for this "affiliate resources" page, but when I checked, it turns out that the pages I've included, and especially those I've put on top, mostly have good pagerank, and when I checked the sites I've already removed as inactive, they generally had zero or low pagerank.

  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    Geno
    As if my posts aren't long enough....I did forget probably an important thing to say. I've only contacted merchants about the reciprocal links when I've noticed they have a link or resources page listed on their home page. (the kind where it's listed at the bottom of the page or somewhere on it that links to a page with the links. Not where there would be a bunch of links splattered all over the front page or anything.) After I've signed up with a merchant I always go to their sites to gather more information about them and include with their links. That's when I'll see the reciprocal links. I wouldn't ask a merchant if they didn't have that on their site and wouldn't ask the affiliate manager. (was just teasing you ) Honestly don't know enough to know who it would benefit the most. In this case with the statistics you've given....your site would definitely not be the one benefiting but his or hers would. Not the smartest way of going about trying to get a link that's for sure.

    Geno said: ".... well, on some reason I do not feel like I have just been blessed."

    I completely agree with you that the affiliate definitely should have worded things differently in a more complimentary nature and they're definitely not lacking in the nerve department to even request it with the stats they have I get requests from people for reciprocal links and they send me nasty emails the next day telling me they've removed my link when I haven't even had time to read their first request. So....nothing surprises me the way people are. lol

    Don't know if it's just the people I know, but most umm regular people lol (not in the affiliate related business) don't have a clue what a reciprocal link is so at least they don't click on links or resources links on a merchant's site. Could just be the gang I hang around with, though. I'm talking Martian language most times trying to explain to them.

  11. #11
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    To show all here how this cross linking senerio can go wrong I offer this tidbit. I asked a merchant, who for years was getting 100+ clicks per day from a PR5 page on my site showcasing their products with viable content, to offer up a link to my page. Selfish idiot submitted my page to several link farms rather then reference my DMOZ listed authority page on their own site. The page is now PRO and they get maybe 10 hits per day from me. I no longer gripe about their conversion ratio, so they do get some hidden benefit...
    Webmaster's... Mike and Charlie

    "What have you done today to put real value into a referral click...from a shoppers viewpoint!"

  12. #12
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    ecomcity
    I only know you from your posts here so I mean no disrespect or anything but I don't know if you're an affiliate, affiliate manager or merchant. So, I aplogize if I should know this from your posts. Doesn't make any difference to me who you are. lol just meant that I'm pretty sure you're one of the long time participants here and don't know if I'm supposed to know which you are.

    I know from an awful lot of the posts you've made you know an awful lot about what goes on (sorry to say....quite a bit still goes over my head...still have a hard time sorting through what both you and Donuts say at times cos I just don't know nearly enough of what you're talking about.) I do listen to what you're saying though because I am trying to learn as much as I possibly can.

    So.....if I understood you correctly you are listed in the DMOZ. Ummm what's your secret? lol don't want any secrets divulged just suggestions on how to do that since others have told me they don't include sites by affiliates. I think my site has a lot of content but I can't get in. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated

    And...it doesn't hurt a person if link farms, etc. put your site on theirs for whatever reason..(not sure if these could be any of the nasty ones that go threatening me for not putting their links on my site and have maybe forgotten to remove mine maybe) it would only be a no no to if I were to have those sites listed on my site....correct? I can't be punished by search engines if somebody places my link somewhere without my knowledge can I?

  13. #13
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    Reciprocal Link Farms and Fairness
    Quote Originally Posted by purplebear
    . . . . So.....if I understood you correctly you are listed in the DMOZ. Ummm what's your secret? . . . others have told me they don't include sites by affiliates. . . .

    And...it doesn't hurt a person if link farms, etc. put your site on theirs for whatever reason..(...) it would only be a no no to if I were to have those sites listed on my site....correct? I can't be punished by search engines if somebody places my link somewhere without my knowledge can I?
    First, nobody excludes web sites merely because they are affiliates. Web sites are generally excluded because they have little or no original content, or their content is buried under advertising (including affiliate links). A page of links to merchants, or a page containing the exact same product info that appears on the merchant's site, is not going to get listed anywhere, including DMOZ.

    Second, search engines do not normally penalize your site simply because some garbage site link to you. However, they do try to identify artificial "reciprocal link" arrangements, and I think that if your site were listed on dozens of other sites that have been classified as "reciprocal link farms," the search engines would be reasonable in downgrading your site. It's unfair, but it's also reasonable.

    Yes, it is completely unfair if you didn't submit your link to those other sites, and especially if one of your competitors did it to damage you, but surely the evil-doers [who actually do submit to those sites] also claim that they aren't responsible.

    More about "fairness" -- today, I learned that someone is broadcasting spam forged with one of OUR email addresses as the return address, and I assume that the email address used in these spams will be added to spam-blocking lists -- not because we are spamming, but because email coming from that address is always spam. (The address in question is a "receive-only" email address, so we don't mind if someone blocks it -- though I worry that someone will add our entire domain to a blacklist, and I worry that we may discover spam being sent using other, more important email addresses at our domain.)

  14. #14
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Subject related content can get into DMOZ, even if the page has affiliate links. The subject editor actually look at and reads the page and makes a determination. For the record I'm a webmaster who makes web sites for all types of clients since the 1990's. I run a few Affiliate programs for my own merchant clients. I also operate a limited number of affiliate marketing sites mostly to learn what sells and the customer facing methods those converting merchants use to increase sales. I charge my ecommerce clients for this info, or build parallel campaigns into their ebiz plans, while protecting & growing their existing online success.

    My years posting about affiliate marketing and comments on sleazy advertising practices comes from my propensity to protect 2 driving forces from enities who seek to victimize them. The Merchants and the shoppers. No amount of commission promises can entice me into promoting shady privacy info peddling merchants or ones who don't deliver.... regardless if they report commissions. I post them as I see them.

    After 18,000 posts in affiliate forums I really don't worry about one word I wrote. At the time I just asked myself what the real customer, or real merchant management would want to say, if they encountered these advertising practices. Other times I just add some humor or rants to relieve the pressure of having to play by all the rules..
    Webmaster's... Mike and Charlie

    "What have you done today to put real value into a referral click...from a shoppers viewpoint!"

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