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    Thin Affiliate or NO Affiliate


    It's starting to garner more interest, that's the relationship between affiliate linking and being penalised by google for being a 'think affiliate', assuming such a moniker exists.

    GoogleGuy has stated any affiliate link will be penalised... Really?!

    The google 'handbook' we all got our hands on a few month back differentiated between thin affiliates and quality affiliates, thin affiliates just reiterating content, quality ones offering comparison etc.

    The question is, who's right?

    Well here's my exercise....

    I have two sites, both have affiliate pages (that is a page of content offering a product, description, and then 1-4 different affiliate links per page offering consumer choice.) Both of which account for less than 1% of all indexed content.

    One site receives 1-5 google hits a day, the other was 500, now is 200.... (The drop also explained due to a ezine article binge i went on, my bad, hopefully will recover.)


    Well this is what i did. I removed all the affiliate links from the site with zero google traffic and left all other things equal. We shall see in 2-4 weeks time if it makes any difference.
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    I didn't follow the story, but if GoogleGuy says that's what will happen, I'm guessing he's basing it on "company policy" or something similar.

    Personally, I'd take it as a tip - use it, don't flaunt it as a crazy idea.

    We're all still using 20th century techniques. Google are doing some heavy 21st century work on their 20th century stuff.

    If I were to be given the choice, I'd take note of the guy. He only says what he is allowed to say.

    I still don't think he is one person though, I think he is a string of people from a given department of the Google government... oops, Google company.

    Don't ignore his words. Or, if you do, prepare to regret it.

    Thingy
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    *GoogleGuy has stated any affiliate link will be penalised*

    I've read this before, but never found an actual attribution, has anyone got one?

    Comments on this post

    • WilliamC agrees : Exactly what I was thinking...
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    interestng..


    As a mainly an affiliate, this question is highly important, i think.
    still no one ?
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    Originally Posted by glengara
    *GoogleGuy has stated any affiliate link will be penalised*

    I've read this before, but never found an actual attribution, has anyone got one?
    Nope.

    Thingy
    x
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    Originally Posted by betsmart
    As a mainly an affiliate, this question is highly important, i think.
    still no one ?
    Very observant, still no one.

    Thingy
    x
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    I've heard this as wlel, but have evidence of very strong sites with one affiliate link here and there (not often), and they're fine...... ANY site with affiliate links is knocked? that's a lotta sites....
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    I can see total spam sites that exist only to sucker people in and then pass them off to affiliates being dinged sure. I, however do not see google knocking off any good relevant sites just cause they have some affiliate links.
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    Right, there are some very important sites that carry a few affiliate links. Bad idea to ding every one with an affiliate link. Affiliate links drive a lot of spam but they also are the reward for some of the best content on the web. If not for affiliate programs there would be no incentive for many very important info sites.

    Comments on this post

    • GeoffreyF67 agrees : Yep. Very bad idea indeed! Not to mention I'd lose lots of money :)
    * "It's not the size of the dog in the fight that matters, it's the size of the fight in the dog." Mark Twain
    * "Free advice isn't worth much. Cheap advice is worth even less." EGOL
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    Originally Posted by djstreet
    GoogleGuy has stated any affiliate link will be penalised...

    no one has stated that. What he means is that if you have a feed of, let's say, shoes from a store, and 50000 other sites have it, what good does it do Google to have them all indexed IF no other value is added to it?
    Last edited by walkman; Oct 29th, 2005 at 10:16 PM.
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    THe question is how does google tell the difference? They use real life monitoring? Sounds pretty subjective.
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    Position and prominence on the page could be an important factor. If you are placing content in the premium above the fold positions then it is very clear that you are a webmaster who runs a site to serve visitors. However, if you fill the above fold space with affiliate ads then you are running a site with different goals.
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    Dealing with Affiliate Links...


    I believe (and with evidence) that affiliate linking can greatly harm rankings.

    That being said, we use a fairly simple method to "hide" affiliate linking...

    Just create a simple php script named send.php such as below...

    PHP Code:

    <?

    $affiliates 
    = array(

    "cards" => "http://www.affiliatelink.com/?y=whatever",
    "hats" => "http://www.affiliatelink.com/?y=different",
    "cleats" => "http://www.affiliatelink.com/?y=whatever",
    "gloves" => "http://www.affiliatelink.com/?y=different",
    "bats" => "http://www.affiliatelink.com/?y=whatever",
    "jerseys" => "http://www.affiliatelink.com/?y=yetanother"

    );

    $site $_GET['y'];

    $link $affiliates[$site];

    header("LOCATION: $link");

    ?>
    List each of your affiliate links in there.

    Create a robots.txt file that disallows all robots from spidering send.php

    Then, whenever you want to link to your affiliate, just use...

    send.php?y=cards (corresponds with the "cards" link in your list)

    or

    send.php?y=hats (corresponds with the "hats" link in your list)


    you can also use the rel="nofollow" on links pointing to the send.php file as well

    This should prevent Google or any other spider from following your affiliate links...
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    I was wondering about the benefits of masking affiliate links RJ, still, it's the non-original/insufficient content that's the major affiliate pitfall, IMO.
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    Yes...


    This does not solve that problem - still need good original content. The problem this solves is sites that have good original content and lots of affiliate links.
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