Certified Online Casinos Guide

By Ellen Smith

Level: Jul 16th 2007
Don’t waste your time guessing what Google is up to anymore. Limit your questions to why some affiliate pages get indexed and others don't. Forget about frustrating fluctuating search engine positioning. Give Google Sitemaps a try.

Affiliates can now use Google Sitemaps to provide Google essential information about their affiliate marketing work, and find out Google's take on their pages in return.

Google Sitemaps 101
Still a Beta product at time of writing, Google Sitemaps requires affiliates to have a Google account. If you use Gmail, you're already set. As an alternative, verified site ownership and an easily generated sitemap, preferably in XML format although RSS, text files and OAI-PMH are also accepted. Keep in mind that submitting a Google Sitemap isn't a guarantee that your affiliate site will be crawled or indexed, but it definitely helps with the process.

Google's Perks
Associates can access a powerful set of affiliate marketing tools for free through Sitemaps' detailed reports. Furthermore, they can easily verify how many of the site's pages have been indexed, when they were last crawled, and get alerted to potential indexing problems, including drilling-down to crawl blips such as HTTP errors or URL timeouts. Maximize your advantages and use the Google Sitemaps' web analytics section, which is handing affiliates statistics on their top search queries plus their top click through search queries.

Pay Attention to Keywords
Find out which are the most common keywords on your site and the most common anchor text keywords linking to your site. In this way you can get an in-depth look at your Google visitors' behavior and tweak their site's copy or inbound link optimization, if Google's “vision” of their site doesn't match with an affiliates marketing objectives.

Frequent Concerns
It's easy to be suspicious of Google Sitemaps' impact on your SERP rankings as many affiliates experienced indexing problems over the last few months because affiliate pages get re-indexed, even de-indexed on a daily basis.

Forget about debates raging over Google's Big Daddy overhaul, algorithm changes, disk storage capacity limitations, sandboxing/blacklisting and more. Google Sitemaps' gives affiliates the opportunity to communicate directly with Google, helping to get both new and established affiliate sites more efficiently and quickly crawled. Use Google Sitemaps to make your affiliate program links and affiliate marketing efforts worth every penny in an industry so reliant on Google traffic.
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