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How can I stop this affiliate?
The bunny boilers of the affiliate world
Silent_Bob




msg:535869
 1:53 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

My site has an affiliate scheme. At the start of the year an SEO company with a site in our industry contacted us with the proposal that they link to our site as an affiliate. What they then did was basically just construct a page linking to every page in our site as if it were a sitemap using our affiliate links. On the rest of their site they have several links to products in our site on each page. Their site seems to get crawled very often by google and has a PR varying from 3-6. They dont have good rankings, but they are crawled regularly and all their pages are indexed.

They generated a couple of sales, but I would guess this was coming from our own urls indexed in google with their affiliate id on (which incidentally knock our identical urls out of the google index and in some cases seem to cause us dupliate penalties). So I requested them in march to remove us from their site. They have not done so and the other day phoned demanding a large sum of money from us that they wrongly believe they are owed.

I sent another letter which they have since signed for and received requesting them again to remove us from their site. Again they have not done so.

Do I have any legal right to be removed from their site. Can this be considered spam? Would google remove this blatant doorway site from their index without penalising my own if I sent them a spam report? Its a very frustrating situation. Plus the guy who runs the site is I'm sure a sandwich short of a picnic and keeps incessantly calling insisting he's owed hundreds of pounds when in fact they only generated 5 or 6 small sales for which I've sent them a cheque for the measly amount they were worth.

 

JeremyL




msg:535870
 4:56 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

You don't really have a right to make them stop linking to you, but you do have a right to cancel thier affiliate status as long as you have a decent TOS.

By the way, how are they linking to you and what affiliate company or software are you using? You could always somehow edit your script to redirect thier visitors somewhere else instead of to your site. I believe you can also use .htaccess and mod rewrite to stop him from sending people with his site.

Silent_Bob




msg:535871
 7:08 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

The affiliate system is just an extension of our store. Instead of writing [mystore.com...] they write [mystore.com...]

This is why they knock my own urls out of google sometimes as they are almost identical and obviously have the same content. I dont really understand why google crawls the affiliate links and indexes them.

Anyway, the affiliate agreement stated that either side could cancel at any time. Whats really bugging me is the incessant phone calls claiming we owe them a stack of money. I can show that they have made 6 sales until the date I gave notice that I was breaking the deal. I dont see how they can argue with this. I have now turned off their affiliate link, but their links still do go to my site, they just dont show as being generated by them any more. So no doubt, because the links still go to my site, they will soon claim I owe them even more money. I dont know of a way to stop the links from working at all.

I'm really suprised that I dont have a right to stop them linking to my site so agressively to be honest. I would have thought I could do something about it.

Silent_Bob




msg:535872
 7:10 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

I believe you can also use .htaccess and mod rewrite to stop him from sending people with his site.

I'd be interested to hear more about this. This could solve at least part of the problem.

Silent_Bob




msg:535873
 8:02 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

Having looked it up, I get the impression that htaccess is for unix only. Is there a windows equivalent?

ThomasB




msg:535874
 9:25 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

htaccess works for apache on all plattforms imho.

JeremyL




msg:535875
 2:24 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Do a search on google for IIS ReWrite or ISAPI ReWrite

Silent_Bob




msg:535876
 10:56 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

I've sorted the problem using this bit of code:

<%
if Request.servervariables("HTTP_REFERER") ="http://www.spam.com" then
response.redirect "http://www.spam.com"
end if
%>

Very pleased to have ended that. Although, I'm sure it wont stop them calling. I'm thinking of redirecting to something other than their own site, like a page saying 'sorry but this site is linking to us without our permission'.

Silent_Bob




msg:535877
 12:20 pm on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Or perhaps redirecting them to google's spam report - bwahahahahaha!

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