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links to Amazon - do they leak PR?
What is best? Served Link? Link from my site?

 9:26 am on Jan 19, 2006 (gmt 0)

I've been thinking about my outgoing links. I have a great many as I have a somewhat academic topic so am always linking out to more information. I don't want to stop setting outgoing links that will help my readers but I would like to minimize it a bit.

When I have a reference to a book I always link the title of the book to the book at Amazon with my ID of course.

Now I'm wondering if it would be better if I set them so that Amazon will serve up the code. In that case Google would not consider it an outgoing link would it?



 2:39 pm on Jan 19, 2006 (gmt 0)

It sounds like you just have an occasional link to Amazon sprinkled in your content.

Even if the link does leak PR I doubt it will have any noticeable effect on your site.

Small Website Guy

 8:55 pm on Jan 19, 2006 (gmt 0)

The problem with Amazon links is that they make so little money that it's not worth the effort to make them.


 2:55 am on Jan 20, 2006 (gmt 0)

Well the are worth the effort to make them since I have the references for each article anyway so all I have to do is add the code. But if the linking is a negative I need to do it differently.

I guess what I'd really like to know is it the links served when I go in and set them up in Amazon have something in them so Google wouldn't follow them? I know my hand coded links would be followed.


 3:04 pm on Jan 20, 2006 (gmt 0)

Anne, I really wouldn't worry about it. You've got more control with the hand-coded links, and don't have to worry about server load causing Amazon to serve up generic ads, which is NOT what you want.

FWIW, I have a number of similar articles sprinkled with Amazon links that rank quite well for certain searches. If the links are leaking PR, it's not having much of an effect.

A page that is mostly links is a different story--Google does seem to penalize pages that are nothing but links to Amazon. But you seem to have to be above a certain percentage of links vs. real content...

And to the poster who says you can't make any money with Amazon: I guess you are speaking from your own experience, right? In my experience, links to carefully chosen items likely to interest my visitors, supported by a personally written review, do quite well. Banner ads do not.


 5:52 pm on Jan 20, 2006 (gmt 0)

The problem with Amazon links is that they make so little money that it's not worth the effort to make them.

I love how people who can't make a particular program work for their web site go off and claim that nobody else can make it work either. There's a lot of money that can be made from amazon. It's not going to happen overnight and it's not going to happen if you just slap up amazon banners.


 6:00 pm on Jan 20, 2006 (gmt 0)

I did quite well with Amazon and PPC a few months ago. It was for $800 item that was on sale.

One thing about Amazon whether it's books, DVD'd or electronics. It converts like clockwork at 3-4%.

Actually now that I think about it I could never do well with digital cameras.


 6:50 pm on Jan 20, 2006 (gmt 0)

Use an out.php type script to issue a 301 and exclude out.php in robots.txt. Doesn't "leak PR" and more importantly hides your affiliate links. I'm not sure why you're worried about having outbound links - isn't that what the internet's all about? If I were a search engine, I would take a long, hard look at a site with no outbounds.



 10:25 pm on Jan 20, 2006 (gmt 0)

I've decided to go with rel="nofollow" on the Amazon books only. I'm still keeping the links open that are to good informational sites.

I wouldn't be concerned if I just had one or two links per page but sometimes I have as many as 10 depending on how many references I used in writing the article.

It may not make any difference but it appears that rel="nofollow" is approved by google so it shouldn't hurt. This way someone doing research can still find the book.

I don't think these links made much money but since my topic is in a niche area most books can't be found locally and many are out of print. So I was linking my references to Amazon before they even went affiliate.

I do differ with the person who says no money is to be made on amazon. I'll admit it's just a fraction of my AdSense earning but with the right topic and right ad placement you can make some steady earnings. I think that putting a picture of the book cover with a link on related article pages does the best.


 1:59 am on Jan 21, 2006 (gmt 0)

My understanding is that the "nofollow" code is intended for use on blogs. Using it in this way with affiliate links is not an approved use. And so it may do you no good . When the "nofollow" code was first announced, I considered using it with my Amazon links, but decided against it when the reading I did told me it wouldn't help.

If you have no more than 10 links to Amazon per article, with other outbound links, you are not going to be hurt in any way.


 6:11 am on Jan 21, 2006 (gmt 0)

from Matt Cutts Blog

Itís true that nofollow got a lot of initial traction because of blog comment spam, but I think of it as a nice and really general mechanism to abstain from voting with a link.



 9:30 am on Jan 21, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi Anne,

I use the following and it has worked a treat for the last three years ;)

<script language="JavaScript" type="text/JavaScript">
function MM_openBrWindow(theURL,winName,features) { //v2.0

<a href="javascript:;" onClick="MM_openBrWindow('http://www.doesnotgiveanypr.com,'','')">


 11:34 pm on Jan 21, 2006 (gmt 0)

anne, thanks for that link. That's interesting. Still doesn't suggest to me that I NEED to add the nofollow tag to all of my Amazon links, but it does suggest to me that it would be OK if I did.


 1:42 am on Jan 22, 2006 (gmt 0)

I'm not sure it will help either but like you said, it appears it won't hurt.

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