Affiliates discussed the issues in Internet forums and began to organize their efforts. They believed that the best way to address the problem was to discourage merchants from advertising via adware. Merchants that were either indifferent to or supportive of adware were exposed by affiliates, thus damaging those merchants' reputations and tarnishing their affiliate marketing efforts. Many affiliates either terminated the use of such merchants or switched to a competitor's affiliate program. Eventually, affiliate networks were also forced by merchants and affiliates to take a stand and ban certain adware publishers from their network. The result was Code of Conduct by Commission Junction/beFree and Performics, LinkShare's Anti-Predatory Advertising Addendum, and ShareASale's complete ban of software applications as a medium for affiliates to promote advertiser offers. Regardless of the progress made, adware continues to be an issue, as demonstrated by the class action lawsuit against ValueClick and its daughter company Commission Junction filed on April 20, 2007.
Possibly more than anything else, Fishkin is a proponent of creating high-quality, useful, honest content. He’ll never recommend keyword stuffing, link buying, or any other tactics that—while legal—are generally frowned upon. If you’re not familiar with his idea of 10x quality content, you should click that link and get to know it well. It’s a guiding principle in high-quality content marketing
Nicole Skuba is the founder and CEO of Blue Tree Digital, a full-service digital marketing agency that specializes in creative marketing solutions for small- to medium-sized businesses. She learned HTML in 1995 and has been involved with the digital world ever since. Her marketing strategies have helped companies increase their pay-per-click conversion rates and increase leads using SEO.