Do Affiliates Hurt Operator SEO and PPC ?
Do affiliates poach sales from their operators SEO and PPC efforts or do they help boost those efforts?
The answer, it turns out, is a little bit of both.
That’s the conclusion Search Engine Journal blogger Andy Riemer draws in an intriguing posting titled, How Affiliates Can Help & Hurt SEO & PPC’s Bottom Line. The whole posting is detailed and well worth reading, but here are a few high points, that are relevant to gambling affiliates, to consider.
How Affiliates Impact SEO
Boosting Backlinks - The connection between high quality content on reliable, authority sites, is well documented and that’s something operators can maximize to their advantage. Riemer suggests that operators get their partners to use direct links whenever possible.
Enhancing Online Reputation Management - The online gambling business relies pretty heavily on casino reviews and, for the most part, these reviews are pretty positive. The combined weight of those reviews, and the backlinks they generate, can help boost an operator’s overall image.
How Affiliates Impact PPC Campaigns
Trademark Bidding – It certainly makes sense that operators won’t get much value when they’re bidding on their own name and products against their affiliate partners. This process can be extremely complicated (definitely check out Reimer’s full explanation), but in the end it’s not really in anybody’s best interest.
Blocking Competition - The upside of trademark bidding is that, at the end of the day, affiliates and operators really are on the same side. When an affiliate partner comes out on the top of PPC bidding war it’s very possible that he or she has knocked off an outside competitor along the way.
Covering the Long Tail - Besides keeping competitors away from lucrative keywords, affiliates can also help operators cover all options by bidding on misspellings and other long tail terms. Since it’s unlikely that an operator will the resources to bid on every misspelling, this can help keep traffic flowing in the right direction.
One term that comes up over and over in Riemer’s article is, trust. Time and time again he points out that affiliates and operators will be in much better shape when they trust one another to properly report sales and are actively working together.
Do you think affiliates help or hurt SEO and PPC efforts? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.