1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Questions about reviews website promoting affiliate links

Discussion in 'Affiliate Programs' started by MetalMan390, Dec 27, 2014.

  1. MetalMan390

    MetalMan390 Regular Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    18
    I am in the process of building a website that will review companies in a specific niche. I would like to join the affiliate program for each of these companies I review and earn each time the visitor buys the service. I haven't done much with affiliate marketing in the past and I have some questions that are probably pretty basic for most of you about how I should set this up.



    • I read about not sending visitors "directly to the offer". Is a landing page fine? Or should I just send them to the home page?
    • I know I need to cloak the affiliate links on my site to hide the traffic source. I can search and figure that out later. But if I am hiding the traffic source by cloaking the links, then I probably shouldn't give the affiliate network my real website address when signing up, right? So, what am I supposed to give them for my web address?
    • If I am cloaking my affiliate links, will they question me about my traffic sources? What should I tell them? Should I be buying junk traffic?
    • I own one of the companies on the site that's being reviewed. I am on a shared hosting plan. The reviews site would be installed as an addon domain in cpanel of the site I am promoting on the reviews site. So, so the addon domain in cpanel looks like "reviewsite.moneysite.com", but just looks like "reviewsite.com" to viewers. I am not aware of anyway to view this connection besides in cpenal. In other words, is there any way for people to find out that one of the sites I am reviewing is hosted on the same shared plan as the reviews site, because of the addon domain name containing the money site domain name? They would both be on dedicated IPs.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2014
  2. MetalMan390

    MetalMan390 Regular Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    18
    I am pretty much done building the site, now I just need the above questions answered before I can go any farther. I had posted this a few days ago thinking I would receive at least some responses since these are pretty basic questions, but no responses after 145 views. Hopefully someone can point me in the right direction here.
     
  3. neverquitting

    neverquitting Regular Member

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2014
    Messages:
    410
    Likes Received:
    327
    Location:
    United States
    Home Page:
    I'm not sure I understand why you're doing all this cloaking and stuff? Your site is supposed to be legit, right?

    Are you in the US? Not sure about the laws in other countries, but I bet you could find yourself in a bit of a mess if it comes to light that you own a company that competes with the others you're reviewing. Without a big, fat, conflict of interest statement, you might have more than just your affiliate income to worry about.

    Maybe that's why you're cloaking? So the other companies don't know that you're a competitor? At the very least, why not get a completely separate hosting plan so the connection wouldn't be *so* obvious.
     
  4. MetalMan390

    MetalMan390 Regular Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    18
    Yes it should be pretty legit. However, I was reading that it's a smart idea to cloak your affiliate links so that the company or companies you are promoting don't know your promotion methods. I will be doing PPC and SEO, mostly white hat but you never know. For PPC, there can be an issue of which keywords you are allowed to bid on, etc. From what I read it just sounded like most people are cloaking affiliate links and I figured there must be a good reason everyone is doing it, and I don't want to just throw the links up there and then have some sort of problem later on. And from what I can tell, it wouldn't hurt to cloak them, so why wouldn't I do that?

    Another reason I was wanting to cloak is because I am not sure how an affiliate company would like it if I am also promoting their competitors on the same page. I figure the less they know the better. And yes, I'm in the US.

    As for having my own site on the list, that's why I was asking about the whole addon domain thing. If that's not going to work then I would just have to buy a separate hosting plan. Most things I do online never seem to work out so I didn't want to invest in a separate hosting plan for another dud idea. Obviously if it takes off then I wouldn't mind spending the extra coin for it's own hosting plan. If it's too much of a risk having my own site on the list then I could leave it out and probably be ok with that, but if I can work it into the mix without much trouble then I'd go that route. But in terms of me having my site in the same list as the affiliates I am promoting, how is that any different than promoting several different affiliates on the same page? Either way I will be promoting their competitors in the same list, so what difference does it make if my site is one of them? I'd be a competitor of theirs, but so would each of the other affiliates I'm promoting on the same page. Isn't this basically what those "top 10" sites all do?
     
  5. neverquitting

    neverquitting Regular Member

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2014
    Messages:
    410
    Likes Received:
    327
    Location:
    United States
    Home Page:
    I don't know anything about cloaking so I'm afraid I can't answer your questions on why or why not. But with respect to being a competitor of theirs, that's a different thing entirely. You own one of the sites you're comparing. You are not an unbiased third party. You're not even a biased third party. The problem is that you're not a third party at all. As a result, your site doesn't really fall under the category of "reviews" anymore, it's pretty much blatantly advertising. And if someone caught you, not only would your affiliates almost surely walk away, but you could get into hot water over deceptive advertising. That's why I'm making such a big point about it.
     
  6. MetalMan390

    MetalMan390 Regular Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    18
    Promoting an affiliate offer is not unbiased either, it's basically the same thing... you are promoting something you have a financial interest in. Also, besides the initial review, the site's overall ratings will be based on USER reviews... the scores by users determine the overall score and ranking of each company. Regardless, I can do without having my site in the list, I can probably make more promoting the other affiliates anyways. So, forget about having my site in the list.

    Can someone answer these basic questions??



    • I read about not sending visitors "directly to the offer". Is a landing page fine? Or should I just send them to the home page?
    • I know I need to cloak the affiliate links on my site to hide the traffic source. I can search and figure that out later. But if I am hiding the traffic source by cloaking the links, then I probably shouldn't give the affiliate network my real website address when signing up, right? So, what am I supposed to give them for my web address?
    • If I am cloaking my affiliate links, will they question me about my traffic sources? What should I tell them? Should I be buying junk traffic?

    Also, will one affiliate company care if I am promoting one of their competitors on the same page?
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2014
  7. MetalMan390

    MetalMan390 Regular Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    18
    Bump to the top...

     
  8. bartosimpsonio

    bartosimpsonio Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2013
    Messages:
    12,489
    Likes Received:
    11,188
    Occupation:
    CHEAP
    Location:
    DATASETS
    Home Page:
    1) Landing pages convert better.

    2) You should probably redirect the traffic via a link shortener to hide your referrer.

    3) They may question your traffic sources, yes. Have one website ready to show but don't show them your real source.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  9. MetalMan390

    MetalMan390 Regular Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    18
    If I am not showing them the real website, then I should create another website, in the same niche but with general articles or something, to show the affiliate company... then should I be have a redirect setup on the dummy site so the referrer comes from the dummy site? Or should I run the affiliate links through prosper202 to blank the referrer?

    As of now, I will be promoting 6 different companies on the same website. 3 offers from cj, 2 from offervault and one that is independent (run by the company), I think. So whatever I end up doing with the affiliate links should be appropriate for each different affiliate company. I am assuming cj and offervault handle things differently, so maybe one cares about blank referrers and the other doesn't for example. Anyone know if one method for cloaking/blanking referring etc would be the best solution to apply to all affiliate links?