Considering all the BHOs (Browser Helper Objects) and parasiteware, cookie stuffers, ad blockers (such as Norton’s), inept merchants, and the growing concern that search engines are penalizing affiliate driven sites, is affiliate marketing dead or a tired old dinosaur ready to flop over?
I don’t think so.
I think affiliate marketing may change as we know it today, and evolve as everything online has. Sure we as affiliate marketers have a tough fight daily to protect ourselves from the parasites trying to grab our sales, watch our merchants and make sure they aren’t up to tricks, and yeah both Google and Yahoo seem to want us at the bottom of the pile, but I think affiliate marketing will always be with us.
Some of the answers may be turning away from cookie based tracking (to dodge the parasite thieves), learning and actively pursuing new methods of advertising and promotion so that we’re not dependant upon organic search results, and developing better tools and techniques to stay ahead of the website defacers (ad blockers).
But as long as we have websites and people viewing them, we’ll always have an opportunity for a sale. Always.
How we achieve that sale may get more complicated, but we’re a smart bunch. And hey – no one ever said this would be easy!