As you may already know from Section 3 of our Editorial Guidelines, EzineArticles allows links from affiliate marketers provided that the URL used is OWNED by the AUTHOR of the article and is a primary domain (can’t be a sub-domain or domain with sub-directory).
This barrier of entry is a message that should communicate that if you’re too cheap to buy a $10 domain, that you haven’t done your homework yet. Prior to this rule, we had a serious inflow of PLR & non-exclusive rights content that made it clear that some (not all) affiliate marketers are only out for a fast buck at any cost.
Here is the range of affiliate link redirects that give us pause sometimes when reviewing articles so that you could see ‘under the hood’ to our thinking:
- DNS Rewrite: Fastest method to move a visitor from a primary domain to an affiliate link.
- Meta-Refresh: HTML code that moves a visitor. Tip: If you’re going to use this method, make the delay = zero (don’t waste the visitors time)
- Framed: Deceptive, confusing, untruthful. This is where a zero pixel frame is setup to show the domain name in the URL address bar, but the contents of the browser show a different affiliate linked URL.
- Script Detect Referrer: Highly evil, creates no trust, makes us question your value as a member. This is where a script detects the title of the referring article and then redirects the traffic based on which affiliate link is A/B split tested to provide the highest yield that day. Makes us uneasy because of how fluid the owner of the script can change the quality of the user experience.
Now, put your mind in the experience of the user reading your article:
Does the user have a positive experience when they click the link that continues the trust-building process you started by offering your expertise in the article body?
If you can’t answer yes, then FAIL.
We’re very efficient at knowing member-history to an obsession level as it’s one of the primary tools we use to determine whether trust should be given or revoked.
You may already know that we continually deep database scan to find dead links… You may not know that we’re also gearing up to be able to determine if articles already accepted would still be accepted if the visitor was taken to the URL today that they were taken when the article was first accepted. If you keep changing this, we’re going to discount the value of your account or seriously question if you have our users/your readership’s best interest or not.
The acid test is: Does your affiliate link redirect from the domain name you own create a positive user experience, is it predictable, and does it build trust?
Affiliate marketers who are only out for fast buck do not represent the type of member we’re seeking.