What do I mean? Well, sometimes, links can be more than just a link. They are “referral” or “affiliate” links. These links basically have some incentive offer given to the website owners, for example, a commission of sales, some dollar value per click, etc. These can be hidden.
Can you tell which one is the affiliate link? (Answer below and an explanation)
Granted, I am a personal finance blogger, so on occassion I’m tempted to slip in a referral link when I’m writing about certain topics and there happens to be one, but I usually don’t. I feel sort of like I’m trying to slip one by my readers. On one hand, I understand the argument that there’s nothing wrong, it’s just a link to the site…I’m suggesting they visit, so I should get credit. On the other hand, if the author is intentionally writing something to try and sneak a profit, that’s wrong.
I don’t think people really talk about it…but what’s your thoughts on this? Ethical? Non-ethical?
Link 1 is the affiliate link. If you watch your browser carefully as you put your mouse over the link, you’ll notice the address to where the link will take you. If you notice, one link has ‘?a=2989′ appended to it, while the other does not. The ‘?a=2989′ is the affiliate part of the link that identifies who the referrer is. In this case, 2989 = me!
BTW, don’t forget to vote on my last poll, What’s working from home worth?