Need a new web host or having a problem with a script? Tips and advice on the best way to design, build and maintain your most valuable asset - your website!

What are the Rules on Stating my Site Has Affiliate Links?

chants
Posts: 107
Joined: 26 Nov 09
Trust:

What are the Rules on Stating my Site Has Affiliate Links?

Hi

I am quite new to this and want to put an affiliae link on my websites.

I understand that there are some rules about transparency and that I need to declare that the link is an affiliate link... could someone kindly give me iome more info... what exactly should I write ... what are the consitions and requirement of this rule.

Thanks a lot

Chantelle
  • 1
PremiumMember
newstart
Posts: 277
Joined: 01 Jan 10
Trust:
My understanding of this is that a website that is an affiliate of a product or service should have a statement clarifying the website's affiliation with the product so as readers or visitors of the website will fully understand that the website will earn a commission if someone purchases a product or service that is promoted from the website.

How detailed that statement requirement is has been left vague leaving the interpretation of the ruling open to the website owner. I have seen website's have a very specific statement versus a vague yet direct statement of product affiliation.

I personally have placed the statement on each page's footer. The statement I use is vague yet direct. It reads: "The owner of this site is an affiliate of the products and or services recommended." I have been told by our company's legal counsel that that statement is sufficient. The more specific statements have included in their statement that a commission was to be received if someone made a purchase.

However, you may want to ask someone to verify this in your particular website that you trust.
  • 1
Site Admin
michellerana
Posts: 2372
Joined: 05 May 09
Trust:
Newstart is right. You just need to make it clear that you are an affiliate of all the products you promote to meet the FTC regulations. Some people just place a disclaimer at the footer, some add a disclaimer page. It's up to you how you'd do it on your site.
  • 2
Michelle
Customer Support


=========================

Want a step-by-step training program in affiliate marketing? Affiloblueprint is a "hand-holding" course that will will show you how to build a site, drive traffic to it, and monetize it.

Go to this link to start building your profitable affiliate sites now!
www.affilorama.com/affiloblueprint
 
evilla.drazen
Posts: 95
Joined: 26 Aug 11
Trust:
Hi there Chantelle,

All the advices mentioned above are right and I agree with them. For a better understanding on rules regarding affiliate sites you can watch on a video about FTC regulations and affiliate marketing.

Hope that helps you.
  • 1
chants
Posts: 107
Joined: 26 Nov 09
Trust:
Hi

Thanks a lot for all the effort taken in this useful feedback... much appreciated

Chantelle
  • 1
PremiumMember
kieran
Posts: 100
Joined: 11 Apr 09
Trust:
Clickbank and Amazon now have disclosure requirements of their own that affiliates need to put on their websites. This is all getting a bit silly!
  • 1
Kieran

www.moneymakingbuzz.com - the Key to Online Wealth
www.buildthingsdirect.com - the Top Site for Home Improvement Projects
 
PremiumMember
jmpruitt
Posts: 4723
Joined: 19 Jun 09
Trust:
The reason the affiliate networks have to do that is because they have to be in compliance with the FTC regulations or they get charged huge fines as well.

Its not silly. if people could be honest, and not do reviews of products they have never seen, it wouldn't be necessary. but unfortunately, there are too many people out there that are more interested in ripping people off than helping people in need. Greed and Laziness rule this industry and government regulation has to be put in place for no other reason than because consumers are being ripped off by worthless excuses for human beings that care only about themselves.

You can do it in a fun and light hearted way, and still make it legitimate too.
  • 2
Your Focus Determines Your Reality
 
PremiumMember
kieran
Posts: 100
Joined: 11 Apr 09
Trust:
I agree with you, James, about the reasons for these disclaimers. What is getting a bit silly is that each entity wants us to word or place the disclaimer in a different way on our websites. This means that most affiliates will probably try to devise a 'one phrase fits all' disclaimer and hope that the big boys leave them alone. The risk is that Amazon, and possibly Clickbank, will close you down without warning.
  • 1
Kieran

www.moneymakingbuzz.com - the Key to Online Wealth
www.buildthingsdirect.com - the Top Site for Home Improvement Projects
 
PremiumMember
jmpruitt
Posts: 4723
Joined: 19 Jun 09
Trust:
Yes, they all have their own guidelines that is true. however, most of them are pretty much saying the same thing and referring to the basic FTC guidelines about transparency. If you haven't actually used a product, you have to state it plainly and not in fine print in the footer.

I generally state it at the beginning of my reviews, along with a llink to my full affiliate disclosure page where I explain what an affiliate is, and how it affects them as a user.

It also helps that I generally only promote products that I have personally at least reviewed, and normally actually use, myself, so its not a big deal to me. For example, I recently reviewed a newbie affiliate training program. I didn't actually use the program, but I went through all of the training modules, and everything he is teaching are things I already use myself. so technically I didn't "build a site according to his plan" but I did review the product, and I can tell the good affiliate training programs from the bad ones, having been through several already myself, and already making a full time income as an affiliate.

If less people promoted products unseen it would cut out all the garbage anyway.
  • 2
Your Focus Determines Your Reality
 
dawberevan
Posts: 5
Joined: 10 Jan 12
Trust:
Hey, am I over or under disclosing on this page?

http://howtoteachyourselftosing.org/sin ... diocourse/

Thanks
  • 1
Site Admin
cecille.l
Posts: 7002
Joined: 25 Feb 11
Trust:
Hi dawberevan,

On that specific page, you are "over-disclosing" (if there ever is such a word). You do not need to put the disclosure on top and at the bottom of the page. You can place it at the end of the article, and that would be enough. If you are promoting other products in the same website, then you can just put a disclaimer at the footer that you are an affiliate of the products in your site or something similar.

Hope that helps. Have a good day!
  • 3
Cecille


Step by step guide to "Penguin-proofed" sites : www.affilorama.com/affiloblueprint


Add us on Google Plus: http://www.affilorama.com/googleplus
 
PremiumMember
jimcoe
Posts: 398
Joined: 13 Feb 12
Trust:
I agree that you should check with your vendors and any affiliate services you use to see if they have specific disclosure guidelines. For example, I got an email from Clickbank with rather specific (and non-optional) guidelines.

This discussion reminds me of many on art portals, where artists brief each other on copyright rules - but don't mention going to the government's copyright website for the straight dope.

You might say, "Hey, I'm not a lawyer. I can't be expected to understand that stuff." But I don't doubt that the government paid good money to have someone write out their rules in plain English, just for folks like us to understand.

It's nice to get opinions and perspectives from colleagues, but the government's own opinion is the only one that counts. Especially if the FTC turns their spotlight and magnifying glass onto your sites.

As a business consultant I respect once said "Never mess with the Eagle". It's far safer to take the time and make the effort to really understand government regs, and abide by them, than to come up with homespun 3rd-hand fixes. The Eagle doesn't (yet) see all, but once that Eagle eye is on you it tends to lock on for a long (and probably expensive) time.

You (or your legal advisor) should check out the real source:
http://business.ftc.gov/documents/bus71-ftcs-revised-endorsement-guideswhat-people-are-asking

The above official website is actually pretty reassuring about requirements and penalties. A lot of it is very "FAQ like".
  • 1
dann02
Posts: 10
Joined: 15 Jul 10
Trust:
I live in the USA, but I'm curious what rules might apply in other countries such as Canada. Could anyone tell me.
  • 1
Here, I talk about my experiences with affiliate marketing and related topics:
http://blogthingsdot.blogspot.com
 
Site Admin
cecille.l
Posts: 7002
Joined: 25 Feb 11
Trust:
I came across a thread in AbestWeb about Canadian affiliates being required to pay GST on their earnings. I am not sure if they have a similar ruling like the FTC. I suggest you go over to AbestWeb and check out the forums on Candian Affiliate Marketers and check what laws they have on affiliate marketing in their country.

The FTC disclaimer applies to all affiliate marketing websites that target US customers, as far as I know. So even if I am not physically located in the US, I need to have a disclaimer on my site.

Hope that helps. Have a good day!
  • 1
Cecille


Step by step guide to "Penguin-proofed" sites : www.affilorama.com/affiloblueprint


Add us on Google Plus: http://www.affilorama.com/googleplus
 

This topic was started on Sep 06, 2011 and has been closed due to inactivity. If you want to discuss this topic further, please create a new forum topic.