How to Avoid Affiliate Tricks
Before pondering over how to avoid an affiliate scam, an individual should first be aware of the different types of scams and their modus operandi. The knowledge of the operation of these scams provides important insights into how these can be avoided. An affiliate business can either be home-based or Internet based. Both these modes require different precautions on the part of the affiliate program subscriber to steer clear from becoming a victim of a scam and suffering an avoidable loss. Every year innumerable affiliates lose thousands of dollars of their commissions and referral incentives by way of these scams. Although choosing an affiliate program wisely is the best antidote to these scams, following is a list of general thumb rules that help in avoiding common affiliate scams:
- Avoid unscrupulous affiliate program sponsors – Most of the affiliate program sponsors fully realize that a happy and successful affiliate is healthy for their business. However, some fly by night sponsors have other intentions in mind. Before joining an affiliate program, one should carefully screen the background of the program sponsor in terms of his past track record, experience with other affiliates, regular payouts, grievance redressal mechanism, general affiliate participation levels etc.
- Avoid unrealistically high payouts – Some affiliate program sponsors set unrealistically high payout levels. This means that an affiliate has to earn a significant amount by way of commissions and referral incentives to be eligible for a payout. Most of the sponsors set the payout limit at reasonable levels. However, a significantly high payout limit should raise suspicion in the minds of affiliates and they should reconsider their decision of joining such affiliate programs.
- Sponsor should have a good tracking system – In case of an Internet based affiliate program, the sponsor should have a good tracking system installed at his server so as to be able to keep track of each sale in real time. It should also enable the sponsor to carefully pinpoint the role of each affiliate in securing the sale so as to disburse the sales incentives amongst the multiple affiliates in a fair and appropriate manner.
- Be careful about link hijacking – Link hijacking is a very common problem faced by Internet based affiliate programs. Some of the customers or other affiliates may cut out the affiliate id from the link thereby robbing the affiliate of the much-deserved commission on the ensuing sales. A number of software solutions are available in the market to overcome this problem. They hide the affiliate id from the visible link thereby ensuring that an affiliate gets due credit for a sale and the link is not hijacked by others.
- Clickbank fraud – A majority of affiliate program sponsors use Clickbank for calculating the commissions of the affiliates. Affiliates need to be aware of the Clickbank fraud that robs them of their hard earned commissions.
The above points act as the general thumb rules to prevent any affiliate scams and ensure that both the sponsor and the affiliate are protected from any unscrupulous elements trying to rob them of their benefits.