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Affiliate Marketing

How the scam works:

You run a small blog or a content-heavy website and make a bit of extra money from advertising, but it's nothing significant. One day, a friend tells you about affiliate marketing, informing you by partnering with a company, you get paid any time a visitor of your website follows a link to the company's website and buys something. It sounds perfect and you partner with a company you find through a link online, but after a while you notice there's no revenue coming in.

You might think the link is not working, and test it again by clicking on it. An immediate pop-up tells you to register. You figure it's working fine and decide to leave it alone, assuming no one's buying.

Little do you know, the company you're affiliated with is reaping all the benefits. The embedded code they gave you creates that pop-up, skipping your account. If the user isn't directed to the sale right from your website, you're not getting the commission.

How to avoid:

There are plenty of great affiliate marketing sites that actually do offer some fair rates. To check the company you're looking at, click the link they sent you to post on your website and see where it goes. If it's a pop-up, you aren't receiving that revenue. It's also a good idea to research the company before partnering with them.

Other hints that your "partner" is taking advantage of you are as follows:

1. They do not have contact information listed on their site.
2. A fee is required for you to sign up as a partner.
3. You can't find information about their affiliate program anywhere.
4. They promise you will make hundreds of thousands of dollars.
5. The fine print specifies that payments are not given to an affiliate partner.

Also, there have been a ton of reports on sites like PTC Bank and Profit Clicking, which you should always avoid.

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