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Affiliate marketing bad for SEO?

   
8:18 pm on May 19, 2010 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Will affiliate marketing affect our SEO for google in anyway? Good or bad?

Also, which affiliate marketing program will have the best results in terms of accuracy of commission for the affiliate? I'm considering launching a new affiliate program of our yahoo store, i'm worried about commisions showing up for affiliates in which the customer already visited our site beforhand for example.

Thank you.
5:08 pm on May 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



This question has been debated for years. Certainly if you have a site that consists of little but affiliate links you are unlikely to rank well in Google, etc. Is that because you are being penalized or because you aren't getting links TO you from established sites? Possibly both.

Google has or had a program for looking for "thin affiliates" and penalizing them--Google that phrase and you will find out more.
5:04 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator 10+ Year Member



If your site has strong content, I wouldn't worry about a few affiliate links as the site needs to make money somehow, via ads, text links or affiliate links.
1:40 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



That's right. I have a site with a large number of affiliate links, even a few pages which essentially consist of lists of books with affiliate links to buy them, and yet I rank #1 on several phrases I target and top 5 for some others. Of course, I also have a few hundred pages of articles and other information.
2:23 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Correct me if I am wrong, but I think the OP is considering starting a program for his store, not put affilaite links on his site.

The downside to affiliate programs is that you risk losing natural inbound links. Affiliate links via 3rd party networks will all typically redirect through their servers which negate the link juice. This can also be a good thing if you let your program run on auto pilot, since you won't be monitoring who is linking to you. Too many links from one site or from a bad neighborhood could harm you, so this actually helps you.

If you will run your program with tight management and limited affiliates consider starting your own program. You could get some SEO benefit from that. We can't really recommend specific networks on this forum. Do a few searches and you should get a pretty good idea of who the larger networks are.
5:07 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



Hmm. I see what you mean.
11:20 pm on May 26, 2010 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



MadeWillis is correct, we are considering starting our own program and having our own Affiliates, we would be filtering our affiliates and not allowing spam sites.
1:50 pm on Jun 1, 2010 (gmt 0)



Affiliate Marketing will have both good as well as bad effect on your website SEO.
It can be a fight for you to stand up on top for your brand keywords as the affiliates participating in your program can have better visibility than you. As opposed to it, due to you increased presence on these affiliates you may get a better rank listing on Google search pages on the broad keywords. Hence the indirect visibility routed through the affiliate websites can increase a lot, where as at the same time it can be difficult for you to hold on to your brand keyword SEO rank.
3:47 pm on Jul 4, 2010 (gmt 0)



Think about it this way. Will 500 affiliates sell more for you then page 85 of Googles search results? You really have to focus on both these issues. Don't have to many out going affiliate links. Try to run your affiliate banners from your domain name, not the affiliate networks. This way you are still counted for incoming traffic. Run your own in house affiliate program if you can.
 

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