Affiliate Marketing: Valuable Tool or SEO Assassin?


Affiliate marketing can be a valuable tool to help put your products and services right in front of your target audience in a more natural and less salesy way. However, if you’re not managing your affiliates properly, it could harm your SEO and brand position.

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Affiliate marketers link to your products and services or share your discount codes on their platforms for a percentage of any sales resulting from those links. It’s low-cost for them and easy for advertisers to set up – especially if you use an affiliate marketing management site.

It’s a growing marketing tool with around £793 million invested in the UK in 2021, so it’s popular, but there are some best practices to consider as every link impacts your brand, SEO, and customer opinion.

3 Affiliate Marketing Best Practises

1 / Don’t accept every single publisher

Any site you allow into your affiliate programme should be appropriate, have visitors in the right location, and provide value for potential customers – so do your due diligence.

2 / Keep all the assets up to date

If you don’t keep your offers, creative and feeds up to date for your affiliates to use, you run the risk of them not sharing your information or leaving the programme, and they could potentially upset your end customers by promoting disappointing out-of-date information.

3 / Track the success

You need to keep an eye on the conversions and usage of the affiliate assets. If a site isn’t sharing your products or offers, it doesn’t cost you anything, but if they are sharing the assets on other sites or not following the terms & conditions of the programme, you need to act quickly to prevent any longer-term issues.

Affiliate Marketing Issues and Recommendations

We conduct affiliate marketer management for several clients, and the main issue we’ve come across is sites with low DA scores, no traffic and incorrect locations applying to the programme. 

They usually have poor quality or spammy content and have been clearly created for affiliate marketing purposes. These kinds of properties deliver no value to their users outside of the offers, so it doesn’t align with what we think affiliate marketing should be: natural, valuable, and appropriate for our customers and clients. 

Of course, there is value in offer code or discount sites such as TopCashback and Quidco, but that value lies in the fact they are well-made properties which are popular, location-appropriate, and the content is not even remotely spammy. 

At the end of the day, onboarding Affiliate Marketers is a judgement call, and that’s why we recommend vetting every affiliate marketer you work with, as well as their online property. Additionally, you should give them clear terms and conditions for the programme that outlines the proper usage of your assets. 

These actions will help ensure that nothing negatively impacts your brand or your site’s SEO through ‘forced’ backlinks or toxic content, and give you peace of mind in your affiliate marketing efforts.

For more advice on affiliate marketing and help to manage your programme, get in touch with us today.

Affiliate Marketing: Valuable Tool or SEO Assassin?

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