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Forum Signature Affiliate Code Linking Question


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3 replies to this topic

#1 pjoachim

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Posted 02 April 2009 - 09:52 AM

I'd like to get your opinion on this. I'm sure it's been asked before, so I apologize smile.gif

I own an online store and just found out one of my employees is an active forum poster within the products industry we sell. We discussed adding a signature to his posts to the online store. I'd like to give him credit for any sales that might be generated by him doing this. The forum he is posting to allows keywords to be linked in the signature file. I was thinking to be totally safe with end-users I would use a URL like www.domain.com/sale... this would redirect to his affiliate code URL and then that redirects back to the homepage URL.

Is there anything wrong with doing this? Will we get SERP benefit without being penalized by Google along with visitors clicking on his signature?

Thanks,

Paul

#2 Randy

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Posted 02 April 2009 - 10:02 AM

Why would Google care, let alone penalize?

That's the easy answer.

As to whether it's an ethical thing to do or not is a whole other question. Your employee will want to make sure they're completely on the up and up about being an employee. And you may want to review the forum's rules where he's posting. Most have rules regarding signature links these days. Some disallow affiliate links altogether.

Don't count on the signature links helping you much with the search engines. They probably won't. Guaranteed they wouldn't help here, since Guests do not see any signatures and all search engines are Guests. But they may bring you additional potential customers.

#3 pjoachim

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Posted 02 April 2009 - 11:14 AM

Thanks Randy,

Doesn't Google care about everything smile.gif

This particular forum displays the signatures for guests and doesn't have no-follow links either. Amazingly enough it's a major industry web site forum.

I realize they could change their policy at any time, but I figure why not give it a try for now.



#4 Randy

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Posted 02 April 2009 - 12:12 PM

As long as your employee is careful to make it clear there is a relationship I don't see any problem with the general concept. It's much less troubling than those places that <cough>review</cough> products or services, but never tell the reader they're getting paid in some way or another.




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