Is Google Replacing Affiliates With Big Brand Spenders?

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Google’s search for utmost relevancy is hitting affiliate marketers hard, who are noticing their best converters diminishing as keyword prices raise. Relevancy has been the company’s buzzword, but critics say it’s more about the Almighty Coin (pr. Kwan).

Is Google Replacing Affiliates With Big Brand Spenders?
Is Google Replacing Affiliates With Big Brand Spenders?

Complaints began surfacing about a week-and-a-half ago at WebMasterWorld as affiliates felt the brunt of Google’s most recent quality score update.

The eight-page conversation thread is kicked off by a representative of online marketing company Internet Marketing Solutions Group:

So I’ve had a campaign running for keyword and I happen to have keyword.org as the domain. Ad and landing page are all about keyword. Suddenly overnight all the keywords that were getting double digit CTR’s have been reevaluated to "poor" and I’ve been asked to pony up 20X more per keyword.

Anyone else seen this and why would this be when everything is relevant? BTW I don’t use analytics or anything else to allow any tracking of conversions from their side, but I can tell you the kw’s that got bumped up high were converting.

A number of affiliate marketers echoed "eljefe3," relaying their own troubles.

"Pexcornel" writes:

My account had 700 groups with some 5000 keywords on a 1300$/month budget.
Only the best converting keywords are disabled. From 0.26-0.30 to 10$

And that type of complaint goes on for eight pages. So what’s happening? SEObook.com‘s Aaron Wall thinks its not just about relevance, but also about replacing low-budgeted affiliates with big-paying brand marketers.

"As soon as enough brand advertisers find your space you are no longer needed," he writes in a detailed blog post. "Thanks for sharing the keyword data needed to tell the brands what to bid on, and best of luck getting traffic from somewhere else."

Comments on these developments are welcome (and encouraged) below. Has the latest Google quality score update sent you digging for money to keep up with the big boys? Are you going to be able to?

Is Google Replacing Affiliates With Big Brand Spenders?
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    Interesting post, serves as a warning to all website owners. Just goes to show that the internet is constantly changing along with Google’s algorithms.

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