Well? Here we are half-way through 2018 and it seems that hardly a day goes by when we don’t hear about yet another scam and someone is taken for thousands of dollars.
They seem to be everywhere these days, you just can’t keep up and they are getting smarter and more sophisticated. The online world of Internet Marketing is no different. That’s why I decided to do some research and try to find out how to avoid Internet Marketing scams.
My hope is, that as you read through this post, you will find useful information that will help you to avoid most, if not all attempts at someone trying to abscond with your hard-earned money.
You worked hard for that money and you should do whatever you can to protect it from people out there who don’t give a hoot about who they hurt or take money from.
Affiliate Marketing (AM) is a legitimate business and many are making enough to live on. Some are making much more than that but, as I have already said, there are also many illegitimate AM Programs out there as well.
It doesn’t seem to matter how many legitimate things there are out there, there will always be someone who will take advantage of those who don’t have the experience or knowledge to avoid falling into their traps.
That is why I am writing this post.
Common Affiliate Marketing Scams
So, let’s have a look at some of the Common Affiliate Marketing Scams and what you can do to avoid getting sucked into handing over your hard-earned money.
Internet Marketing Training programs – If you are new to “Affiliate Marketing” you probably are thinking about finding some good training. Well, there are some pretty good Internet Training programs out there like the one I’m learning from but there are others that say they have everything you need to learn at a low cost ($7 – $49) and, after you sign, up you discover that there are additional up-sells that, in some cases could cost upwards of $1000’s of dollars or more to get the full “Training Package”. In my mind, this is just not acceptable.
It’s kind of like going to a restaurant and you order dinner and then the waiter/waitress asks if you want some other item that would go well with your meal. That’s an up-sell.
Often these upsell’s are hidden until you sign-up. Personally, I think that if they can’t tell you up front what the costs are going to be then I would just avoid them. They are not being honest.
The one I am learning from is, in my opinion, the best out there. You know all the costs up front AND it’s free to start.
Now, I know what some of you are saying, “They all say that!” or “Why yours and not some other one? What makes you think you have the answer or have found the best training program?”
If you want to know more about why I think I have found the best Training Program for Affiliate Marketing click HERE and judge for yourself. I’ll talk more about this later on.
– Get Rich Quick Schemes – There are many Affiliate Marketing “OPPORTUNITIES” on the internet that promise big money in a short time period. They say that if you use their system you can just “Plug it in and it will do the work for you” or “We have a secret system” or a “Special Algorithm”
This just is not true. You have to pay for their “Fool Proof” system. They get your money and you get a useless program.
If someone promises you “Secrets Systems” or ??? “Overnight Success”. Success” ??? Don’t buy into this. It takes time to build a legitimate business and attract traffic/visitors.
If you want to be successful online you will have to be willing to put in the work. It’s the same with any legitimate business.
– Come On’s From Other “Affiliate Programs” – How does this happen?? Well, this usually happens when other companies sell your information. These companies take that info and begin spamming you with offers to join their Amazing program.
Maybe the AM Program you signed on with is the one selling your information.
As in my first example, there are probably going to be more up-sells if you sign up. And, again, if the costs are not fully disclosed in the beginning, I would avoid them.
– Multi-level Marketing – In many of the “MLM Programs” you make money promoting the same “Program” with no services involved. They are called “Multi-level Marketing” or “Network Marketing” and don’t be mistaken, these programs are not “Affiliate Marketing”
The definition of MLM: A controversial marketing strategy in which the sales force is compensated not only for sales they generate but also for the sales of the other salespeople that they recruit.
This only works well for the ones that are in the first couple of tiers and the ones that make the most are the ones that came up with the idea.
Some people who thought they were going to make a lot of money have actually lost money and the scheme eventually fades away leaving a bunch of people wondering what just happened.
– Buy My E-BOOK – Most everyone has heard about E-Books. They’re a very popular way to read books these days and they don’t take up a lot of space.
You can buy them on Amazon Kindle and KOBO, magazines from places like ZINIO. Some of them even come in audio versions. Pretty cool if you ask me.
Free E-books have been around Internet Marketing for many years and, like many other good things, some have taken advantage of their popularity and they offer their e-book for free but you have to pay the shipping charges.
Some of these “Shipping Charges” are more than the actual cost of shipping and that is how they make their money.
They often turn out to be shallow in their information, lacking value.
I hate using words like “disreputable” and “scam” but the truth is if they are offering a “Free” e-book and all you have to pay is the shipping they don’t make any money when they give it away. DUH!! How do they cover their publishing costs?
In my research, I found out that some of these “Shipping Charges” are considerably more than the actual cost of shipping and that is how they make their money. Is this ethical? You decide.
The main reason they do this is to Get your “Contact Details” which they will use to send you other promotions that are a lot more expensive.
– Phony Products – A legitimate “Affiliate marketer” is a person who makes money with a website that promotes actual products and real services that are sold by other merchants.
The Affiliate Marketer signs up for their “Affiliate Program”. When they are approved, they receive a code that is implanted in the product code.
When someone clicks through their website to the merchant’s site and purchase a product, the affiliate will earn a commission of 6%, 8%, 10% or as much as 50% depending on the item. This is “REAL” Affiliate Marketing.
Good examples of this are Amazon or Camping World. Apple, Samsung, Best Buy are other examples of companies that have reputable Affiliate Programs
Anyone who promises you great success, $1000 of dollars selling their product be cautious and do your research. Be sure the product is legit.
Last But Not Least
Does it just seem too good to be true? How many of you have come across an intriguing marketing program that seems to spend a lot of time telling you about their big fancy cars and their amazing mansions and traveling all over the world? I mean, they really spend a lot of time talking about all the stuff saying “You can have all this too if you join us.”
Be skeptical about these “Amazing Opportunities”. Ask yourself some hard questions.
- Is there a proven product?
- Is there a legitimate service being provided?
- What are the costs to get involved?
- Is there a way to ask Questions?
- Is there a time limit involved, a Clock that is ticking down? Is time running out to take advantage of “The Best Deal”?
These are all great questions that should be asked of any Internet Marketing Program or training program or MLM program and you want to be absolutely sure you’re putting your money in the right place and not giving it to a shark.
Note: I just read the other day that scammers also use other Affiliate Programs and companies to try and get your money. The one, in particular, that I read about involved Amazon.
The scammers tried to get someone to join through a phone call and involved a “Work at home” opportunity that would pay between $17-$32 per hour and you only had to pay a small fee to join.
Two red flags here:
- Amazon never solicits employ’s by phone and,
- They will never charge a fee for this or any other type of employment,
How Do We Avoid The Bad Guys Then?
We need to do our research and thankfully there are some things you can do to avoid these bad guys and keep your money from getting into the wrong hands.
GOOGLE – When you come across something that you think might be a bit too good to be true, the first thing you can do is a Google search. Just type in something like “such-and-such company reviews”. Lots of people have done reviews on legitimate and illegitimate companies and you will be able to tell who the good ones are because the good reviews will out-weigh the so-called bad reviews by a huge margin.
If there are a lot more negative reviews on a program or product the odds are good that this is one to avoid. You owe it to yourself to do a thorough search.
When I thought about getting involved in trying to make money on the Internet, I knew that I would have to find a good training course. When I found the one that I’m now part of I found and read many reviews before I made up my mind to join. I also found a couple (2) reviews that weren’t very complimentary of the program.
I joined the free membership and had good look around and found that there was no basis for the negative reviews. They didn’t truly understand what the program was all about.
BBB – Check out the Better Business Bureau. They have an extensive list of companies that they have done reviews on. Good or bad, If the company is real and their products are real, if there have been any complaints the BBB has probably heard and or reported about it.
The Best Way Is To Build A Legit Business
Like the title says, the best way to stay away from these scams is to first, do your research and second, find a legitimate program. And, whether you’re experienced and want to take you’re Affiliate Marketing Venture to the next level or you’re new to Affiliate marketing with no experience, you should look for a legitimate training program.
If you want to build a legitimate Online business there are some things you need to do. You need to;
- Choose a Niche – Do you have a particular interest or hobby that you would like to take to the next level or a service that you can offer. Perhaps it revolves around photography. You could write reviews and promote different types of equipment and or advice about photography. There are 10s of thousands of profitable niches and millions of products that are purchased every day on the internet.
- Buy a Domain Name and Build a Website – On today’s Internet, this is one of the easiest things to do. Within a platform like I am learning through, (Wealthy Affiliate), you can have a website online and live within a minutes. Yes, I said minutes.
- Attract Visitors to your Website Business – Bing, Google and, Yahoo are just a couple of the many ways to do this and it’s free to do. Other ways are through Social Media, email list building or paying for traffic.
- Monetizing with Affiliate Programs – There are Affiliate programs for virtually every niche and, as I already mentioned, there are millions of products associated with those niches that one can promote on a niche website. These Affiliate programs pay affiliate marketers commissions from 2% – 50% and more depending on the product and the program.
It seems like there should be more to do but that is pretty much how Affiliate Marketing businesses get started. With today’s technology, it’s pretty simple.
A Great Training Program
The only other thing you will need is a good training platform that will give you a solid foundation that will help you to create, build and grow a legitimate Online business. There are a few good ones out there but my #1 recommendation would be WEALTHY AFFILIATE.
Why Wealthy Affiliate you ask? Well, here’s why.
- It’s FREE to start – NO credit card is needed and there is no obligation required as a Starter Member with two free websites. By the time you have gone through the first 4 lessons, you will have chosen a niche and you will have a website. By the end of the first level, you will have an understanding of Keywords, producing content for your website, choosing a “WordPress Theme” for your site and more. Check it out HERE
- The WA Community – You will have access to over 1,000,000 members and begin to develop some significant relationships with many who can help you over the speed bumps
- Affiliate Bootcamp Phase 1 – This is a training program for those who wish to promote WA. WA has an amazing affiliate program with commissions of 50%. Free members receive 25% commissions.
- A Training Program Like No Other – As a “Premium” member you will have access to ALL of the training in both programs and hundreds of hours of video training and other training produced by members.
- Upgrade to Premium – You will see the cost for this upgrade right up front. There are no hidden upgrades. Premium Membership is $49/Mo or $359/Yr and you never pay a penny more. You have access to everything WA has to offer.
Well, there you have it. I hope this post has been informative and will help you avoid the bad side of what some call “Affiliate Marketing” but turns out to be anything but. Legit is much better and, really, it’s the only way to be successful online and you won’t be giving your hard-earned money to those other guys out there who don’t care if you succeed or not.
If you have any encounters with online scams or good experiences with Affiliate Marketing, I would like to hear your story and I will respond in kind.
If you have any questions or comments about what I have written, I would be more than happy to hear about them as well.
This website exists to help everyone be a success in their Online journey and if you are serious and ready to take the next step, I would encourage you to check out Wealthy Affiliate. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, I wish you all the best.
Owner and Writer for My Stay Home Business