Last month I blogged about The Ugly Side of Affiliate Marketing and described some major issues that I was having with, among other things, with my Google Adsense Account and the eBay Partner Network. I’m happy to report that all of the problems have been resolved. However, it wasn’t without a lot of help and a lot of lessons learned–lessons that can apply whether you get hit with the nexus tax, unexpectedly dropped by merchants, or even dropped from entire networks.
I took the opportunity to discuss it with my Blogging ABCs co-hosts Deborah Carney and Liz Fogg. Here are some of the things that we talked about in the podcast that I learned from this debacle:
1) Diversify. Have different types of sites in different niches. Work with different merchants across different networks. This saved me because I still had other revenue streams even when two of them were down.
2) Separate Accounts. Use separate network accounts when you have multiple sites or especially different types of sites (incentives, coupons, gambling, etc). It will come in handy if one of your sites gets flagged or if you decide to sell a site. If I had done this with both Adsense and eBay, I likely would not have run into either problem that I had.
3) Use link redirecting. Redirecting will help you change out links quickly if you need to. In addition, you can use shorteners so that your domain shows up instead of someone else’s when you post your links in other places. In some cases where I did this, I was able to change out my links quickly. Where I didn’t, I will probably have a lot of dead links and lost revenue opportunities.
4) Network. Meet in person with as many people as possible. Further, after you connect with them, follow up, reinforcing your connection. When you need help, those connections may be the difference between keeping and losing your business. I can honestly say that without my network I may not have ever gotten these problems solved.
Some Resources we mention:
Pretty Link Lite
YourLS Open Source shortener that you can install on your own website
In the end there was a silver lining; my sites are back to normal and I’ve learned some valuable lessons that I need to share with everyone else so that this doesn’t happen to them. You just knew with a nickname like “Sunshine” it would have to end like this, right?