Credibility and Affiliate Sites

    December 14, 2007

Many Thin Affiliate Sites Look Real

Some of my friends publish fake review sites which organize product recommendations by using the following quality measurement and rating system (affiliate payout per conversion * conversion rate). If people buy it, it must be good. 😉

I have other friends who do real in-depth reviews, but they use such poor formatting that their content looks less trustworthy and more advertisement-like than fake review websites.

Adding Signs of Trust

Smart affiliates know how to convey a sense of trust and look editorial to enhance conversion rates. Editorial rating systems, privacy policies, headings, subheadings, security symbols, pricing data, reviews, features, a clean site design, and consumer generated content increase conversion rates. Assume I am only skimming your page. Assume the little things matter.

A Well Done Affiliate Site

While I do not agree with all the reviews, I can appreciate how well done Mike’s Marketing Tools is. Most of the reviews look impartial. And some of the reviews, like the Optilink review, even link out to a thin affiliate site owned by Mike that passes as the official site after Google banned the official site!

A Poorly Done Official Site

 Take a look at how spammy and thin affiliate looks. It is the official site (required by law) but it looks like crap because Experian does not get paid if you use it. In fact, it even kicks you over to the Experian site before seeing results, requires you fill out identity verification surveys, and tries to upsell you on a paid reporting service before showing you your free report.

Compare its drab look and nasty conversion process to the look of Which one looks more trustworthy? Yup, its the one that is charging your credit card recurring for something that is "free".

Does Your Site Look Legit?

Thin slicing information credibility is often about evaluating appearance. Unfortunately many of the people creating real content don’t put as much effort into formatting and marketing as the people creating fake content do.