Good Evening And Welcome To… Whats My Google Penalty!!

Google 17 Comments »

Imagine if you will, a 70’s style gameshow complete with host in spangly Gold Lame jacket, permatan, and gleaming white teeth….

“Hello ladies and gents, boys and girls and welcome to another fascinating episode of… “What’s my Google Penalty!!”

“This week’s contestant is a familiar face here on What’s My Penalty and she’s really wondering how the hell she got here again.  Please welcome… KIRSTY MCCUBBIN!!”

*Crowd goes wild, insert Hammond organ medly, Cue Google Robot Dancing Girls…*

Yep, It’s Happened Again!

Over the past few days my brand new site Blokes Undies has been on a bit of a downward spiral in the organic traffic stakes.  Over the weekend it stopped ranking for its own name, which is usually a strong penalty indicator.

So What Is It THIS Time Kirsty?

Well, at first I found THIS when I searched for D&G Maxi Logo Boxer Shorts (opens in new window) and was fairly convinced that these nasty scrapers had gotten me a Duplicate Content Penalty with their scurrilous spamming activity.

After a quick consult with the kind people over at the A4UForums I filed various Spam reports, shortened my feed content to stop people nicking content that could knock me from the SERPS, and generally stewed in my own juice.

But Was it That?

See, one thing you have to remember about trying to work out a Google penalty is that the first thing you find, compelling as it may be…. isn’t necessarily your issue!

I had also found another funny little issue with my indexing, where content on the site seemed to be attributed to lots of different pages by Google, despite only appearing on one. Example Here (opens in new window)   but as it had been present for a while I’d put it down to “a bit of a Google glitch” and a couple of people said they’d had similar in the past.

“Can’t be that then.”  I thought.

And I Reckon That’s The Nasty Little Game Show Type Trap These Situations Can Pull on You!

I’ve seen lots of “Google Penalty Checklist” type posts, and in not one of them does it say “NEVER rule out anything.”

Fortunately, the indexing situation was nagging away at the back of my head.  I don’t like leaving issues and expecting them to fix themselves.  Earlier, I finally thought to view the source of one of my pages… just in case there was an outside chance there might be some odd thing on there.

And What Do I Find?

Arrghhh!! The featured content gallery plugin I posted about previously doesn’t only post nice pictures and titles… it features content excerpts from each post as well.  On my site, they were within the source code of each page, not visible to users, and indexable by Google.  Not good.

Having checked out some other sites using the plugin I think I must have gotten something wrong with the install as I’m not seeing the same issue on any of them!

Ho Hum…

Well, all I can do is wait and see how it all pans out now.  Honestly, how many penalties can one girl just trying to “get it right” actually create!  I think WordPress is great, but the amount of issues that can happen without you knowing about it because of how automated and brill it all is are many and varied.

It’s never dull is it?!


Think Your Google Penalty is Gone? Are You SURE?!

Google 2 Comments »

As many of you will remember I had a bit of bother in the middle of last year with a Google Over Optimisation penalty on my Lingerie site.  I documented the trials and tribulations of the whole thing, and was delighted when all my lovely traffic came back.

Or did it?

I was quite happy that my traffic had returned to previous levels and set about fixing up some other sites and starting a few new projects.  After a while, I noticed the odd page that should have been ranking, still wasn’t. But every new page I put up seemed fine and I disregarded it. In typical style it has taken me ages to get curious about it.  However, just before Christmas I decided to analyse the extent of the issue.

And I Was In For A Bit of a Shock!

Out of 109 site pages I looked at, no less than 49 yes you heard me right FORTY NINE still had some kind of ranking issue related to the same Google filter I described all those months ago.  Despite me thinking all my lovely traffic had returned 45% of my site was still in the rankings doldrums.  Some were nowhere to be found, others were only ranking for more obscure term variations (one of the reasons I thought things were a-ok again!).

So, I set to and went through the whole 49 pages. This time I added in lots of new content and removed any term repetitions that still looked “awkward” In the last couple of weeks the results have been steadily growing: –

Recovery -AGAIN!!

My organic referrals from Google have increased by around 30%.  Once again, I’ve learned an important lesson about never leaving a job half done with Google.

If you’ve had any filtering issues and think they are resolved, I thoroughly recommend that you take a closer look.  DIfferent search terms seem to have different over optimisation thresholds which means you’ll only find out where those lie by analysing and re-analysing affected pages.  If, like me, you simply assume everthing is A-OK you might just be wasting some of your own hard work!

My next step will be to wait another 4 or 5 weeks and then repeat my manual analysis of all site pages, followed by whatever content alterations are required.

It’s never dull being an affiliate!


Google Boots Adwords Booze Ban

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In yet another “never a dull moment at Google” development, they’ve decided that they will allow advertisers to promote hard alcohol in the US with plans to roll out to other countries in the coming weeks.  A few weeks ago they loosened the rules on beer also.  Of course, this has absolutely nothing to do with their ad revenues being down during these tough times. Not at all.  In fact, when Barry Schwartz of Search Engine Land asked Google what was behind the decision he was told its as a result of “advertiser feedback”.

Well, that’s alright then isn’t it? I’m quite relieved really I was just picturing Larry and Sergy down to their last billion, and the staff canteen at Google HQ running out of Fillet Mingnon.  Oh, the humanity!

One Proviso Though…

The new rules don’t allow for the direct promotion of hard alcohol. i.e. “Buy One Get Three Free on Vomitikov Vodka”.  Rather the relaxation allows you to highlight features of the alcohol.  So therefore you can only use Google ads to promote the “branding of alcohol”.

I Don’t Understand The Reasoning

Perhaps I am foolish and uninformed, but I can’t see the point of the half measure (boom boom).  If its the generation of alcoholics that they’re concerned about, alcohol branding will create them just as readily as letting them find a site which will actually sell them a drop of the hard stuff.   And why is beer now considered so much less of a damaging substance than spirits?  They should visit any UK high street at 3am to see exactly how wholesome beer is!!

And Finally…

Its NOT OK to sell spirits, but  It IS OK to sell naughty adult DVDs, access to porongraphic content and all sorts of other exotic goodies.

Which is actually the naughtier of the two?  I reckon that’s how you can tell its a company run by loads of men.

“Alcohol?  Ooohh, no.  We can’t have that.  People might get addicted to it.”

“Porn?  Totally harmless.  Chuck the ads up!!”


Getting Past The Google Over Optimisation Filter – Hurahh!!

Google 12 Comments »

I wanted to wait a little while longer to make this follow up post about my progress with the Google filter my affiliate site has been suffering from. I’d have liked to gather a lot more data before declaring the process I’ve been through a success. However, I’m moving house on Friday and going home to the UK the following Tuesday, so if I don’t make this post now it might never happen!!

OK, so for those of you that don’t know about the issues you can catch up here, here and here on the Google filter fun I’ve been having with my site.

To Cut A Long Story Short – It’s Working!

I’ve just spent the most boring 4 weeks of my life visiting each and every page of my site and reducing the mentions of product brand names and other key search terms. I was starting to think it was all for nothing as there wasn’t a lot of improvement. Paranoia and stress are the companions of the Google filtered affiliate! This week, I have really started to see the benefit of those changes. In my previous post I was starting to see a few pages popping back into the index. This few pages have turned into several, and this increases every day. Basically I’m now seeing a lot of the pages I altered right at the start of this process returning to the index.

What Have I Learned

  • Unlike the duplicate content filter, the over optimisation filter takes a few weeks to be lifted. Whether this is because of any time penalty Google applies to your site (which Matt Cutts has more or less said can apply in certain scenarios) or is simply reflective of the time it takes Google to spider and re-evaluate your site content – I don’t know. I read somewhere that when there has been a filter such as this applied to your site, it will be re-calculated the next time Google decides how much optimisation is too much. If you have a filter like this on your site, I would say allow 6 to 8 weeks for your changes to be taken into account.
  • This is an algorithmic filter, not a manual penalty.
  • This filter was in relation to on page factors rather than off page factors such as link building.

My site has now already returned to getting roughly 30% of its traffic from organic sources. This was the proportion I was getting before the initial problems manifested late in May. This is terribly exciting because the majority of the affected pages have not yet returned. Hopefully what this means is that my site will be better and stronger than ever because of the revisions I have made.

A Side Effect of This Process Was..

That I realised the cross linkage between a lot of the pages on my site was really poor. I had written over 200 product based articles to compliment the main sections of the site. For the last 3 months not one of them has been generating traffic. I realised this wasn’t big bad Google, but the fact that the previous / next links within the article categories hadn’t been working for a while. This means a lot of them have been de-indexed and those that remain are linked to from perhaps only one page on the site. I implemented improved cross linkage and a sitemap on the blog, so I hope that means further growth is still to come when Google re-includes them.


The whole point of this post was – those changes I’ve described in all my posts did the trick.  I’ve gotten out of Google jail and am back on the SEO highway.

This has been a very positive learning process for me. It is very important to me that I get a significant proportion of my traffic from organic sources to protect my income from the ever increasing competitiveness in the PPC arena and all those other margin squeezing factors affecting the industry today.

Thanks to everyone who has commented or sent me a message, they all really helped me focus on what the issue was.

Woo hoo!!!!! Getting married, moving house, and escaping from a Google Filter in the same month?  What a charmed life I lead 😉


Google To Remove Inactive Status on all Adwords Ads

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People who’ve had apparently endless issues with the Google Adwords quality score might get quite excited by this headline. However, in the usual style of our good friend Google, they will be replacing the current system with one they say will create a fairer basis for evaluation.

Basically, they are going to tinker with the quality score once again. The new system is an attempt to create a more accurate quality score. As all us affiliates know, the QS is less than perfect and I’ll welcome an improved version. However, forgive me Google if I silently quake in my PPC boots in case you’re about to knock down my affiliate house of cards once more! It’s difficult not to get anxious when the big G-meister announces an all singing and dancing shake up to the status quo.

The Changes in a Nutshell: –

  • The new quality score is calculated each and every time an ad is served in response to a Google search query. Google will use this data to work out which queries your ad is performing best for. Google says the data collection will mean your ad is more likely to show for relevant queries and less likely to turn up for irrelevant search strings.
  • An end to keywords being marked “inactive for search”. This won’t mean a PPC free for all, so try not to get too excited. Google says that despite this, keywords which have been previously marked inactive for search are unlikely to get much traffic. According to them, their combined per query quality score and bid levels are unlikely to result in a good placement.
  • Minimum bid is also up for the high jump. As Inactive for search is being scrapped, there’s no need to display a minimum bid for ad activation – that will already have happened. Instead, there will now be a “first page bid”. This will do what it says on the tin. Tell you what you need to shell out to get your ad on the all important first page.

What does this mean? Well, at first glance it just seems like Google is tweaking things to try and tighten up the relevance of their results. I also welcome the first page bid metric being clear, it will help me to judge how much I should be bidding over large groups of keywords and ads.

However, I’m interested in what will happen in the scenario where there are very few or no ads in response to an extremely niche search query. If I were Google, I’d recognise that accross all the millions of keywords falling into this category there’d be a significant hike in ad revenues from making sure Adwords ads were more likely to be served. Paranoid? Well, perhaps… but I will be really interested to see what happens with this one. I’ve often read anguished tales from affiliates who have had keywords of exactly this nature switched off who said they had excellent ROI from some golden niche they’d stumbled upon, only to have them slapped.

More reading here in this article on the subject by Barry Schwartz


Google Filters – An Update on the Recovery Process!

Google 7 Comments »

I promised I would keep a bit of a log on this blog about the process I’m going through to try and sort out some Google filter issues my lingerie website has been suffering from. I’ve now spent almost a week working my way though the site and have altered about two thirds of the content. As I’ve gone along I’ve made loads of test searches which helped focus on the issues that were present.

Some interesting developments have happened in the last few days. I’ve got screenshots of this, so I thought it was time for another post!

My (Slightly Revised) Theories on The Causes

As I worked my way through the site I discovered a distinct pattern to those pages that were still ranking – they had 100% unique content on them. These would have been the pages that immediately bounced back into the index after my initial problems. I found that loads of the pages filtered out had inadvertently used the same or very similar content via a combination of the blurb I place on each page and similar post excerpts that were also on many other pages.

However, I am now sure there was a second filter being applied… perhaps one for keyword stuffing / over optimisation. If it had been entirely dupe content, I think I’d have seen a more even spread of Google “picking” inappropriate pages to rank. However, a number of pages were also behaving in a different way and were either not in sight in the index or were ranking Waaaaaaaaayyyyyyy back.

There’s also the small matter not mentioned previously – I have a second site affected which has no duplicate content. It’s just been shoved right back in the results as per some of the lingerie pages, and shares the same site structure. This is what convinced me two things were happening on my lingerie site.

So Here’s What I Did

I am visiting each and every page on my site and: –

  • Removing the similar output from the top of every page and replacing it with a paragraph of unique text which then links to the brand description further down the page via a named anchor (not an optimised one I might add!).
  • Making sure that each and every brand description is completely unique.
  • Removing any pages that don’t need to be there. i.e. if one page can cover the swimwear and lingerie lines for a specific brand, I’m consolidating my content.
  • Manually altering each and every similar post output so that each post excerpt is only ever featured on one brand page.
  • Removing any unnatural looking repetitions of my target keywords in the body text.
  • Reducing the amount of header and anchor text that mentions target keywords.

Now For The Interesting Bit. What Effect Has This Had?

Well, it’s still early days as Google’s cache for the pages I’ve altered has still not updated. And yet I’ve started to see something very odd over the last couple of days. Something that MIGHT back up my keyword stuffing / over optimisation theory OR could just be a Google funny that has coincidentally happened this week. I can see other sites showing similar symptoms today including ASOS… so I’m not totally sure this is related to my filter issues.

Some Pages Have Started To Rank Again – But Not All The Time… and Still Not “Properly”

This is really fascinating actually. I first noticed this yesterday and have been grabbing a few screenshots. I know it was not happening prior to my changes as I have analysed each and every Google referral I’ve had for the last two weeks!

OK. Here’s my site ranking for “Manstore Mens Underwear“. This page was not ranking at all a couple of days ago, regardless of which search string used.


As you can see though, Google is not showing the title in bold which I’ve never seen or heard of before (which makes me think it may not be entirely penalty related – but it sure is interesting!) The same page also ranks for “Manstore robot strip string” and “Manstore Underwear”

*update– I am now seeing this “title not in bold” issue manifesting itself all over the place – so its clearly Google fiddling around generally that is causing this rather than any kind of penalty.

For the search term “Manstore Boxers” which you could logically assume I should be ranking for, this is the page Google has chosen to place at result 50: –

Bjorn Borg

*update – this has changed over the weekend.  I’m now ranking number one for the term “Manstore Boxers

I’m seeing this time and time again over many pages. Some suffer from the “Non Bold” issue I’ve described above, others are fine. Here’s another interesting example that made me think a keyword specific penalty has been in place on the following page alongside a dupe content penalty (which again had previously been knocked out of the rankings altogether).

Here’s the page being ranked for “DKNY Nightwear” at result 10 (hurahh!)

But here is the search result for “DKNY Sleepwear” waaayyy back at result 82

I’m seeing the same on a Calvin Klein page I altered a few days ago. I’m ranking 15 for “Calvin Klein Nightwear” and again a “wrong page” is popping up for “CK Sleepwear

*edit – I’m now seeing the right page ranking for CK Sleepwear, around result 35.  Progress!

I’m seeing similar on other pages, but at the moment it is in a constant state of flux. Some that I checked right before writing this article had changed by the time I got to the end here, with the “right page” popping back up. So that makes me think: –

  • Some of my pages are being slowly forgiven.
  • Some of the pages are exhibiting a penalty for particular search phrases i.e. those containing “Sleepwear” because the page content was too tightly aligned with them.
  • I’m going totally and utterly mad and its time to move into the “Sunnyvale Home for Knackered Old Affiliates”.


Well, that wraps up my thoughts for now. I hope it is helpful to anyone who is interested in this kind of stuff. This on its own is great fun actually. However the other site thats just been bumped to the end of the results worries me a fair bit, there’s much less to go on with it. All I’ve learned here will be a good place to start though.

Wish me luck :)


Dr. Kirsty’s Google Filter Diagnosis – More Site Problems!

Google 21 Comments »

I’m sure many of you read my the post I made a while back as I was delighted I’d sorted out my Google Duplicate Content issues. My traffic rose nicely, and has remained at a reasonable level. However, after a few weeks of waiting for all of my pages to return to the index, I’ve been forced to an unfortunate conclusion – there was more than one problem!!

Doctor, Doctor… I Think My Site Has A Terrible Illness, It’s a Shadow of its Former Self!

*sigh* Many of my site pages are still being filtered out. Basically, for some of the site pages Google is ignoring my nicely crafted brand specific pages, and choosing to rank another less relevant page from the site in it’s place. A sure fire sign that Google is not happy with you. Here’s a really good example for the search term “Odille Swim“.

Odille Swim

I’ve spent the last 3 days solid doing test searches, looking closely at on page content, and analysing the difference between those pages that had recovered and those that had not. I’ve drawn some conclusions based upon a few consistent result behaviours and a generous helping of Google intuition. I thought it would be useful to share my thoughts on the issue with you guys so you can…

1 ) see my process (right or wrong) of working through a situation like this


2 ) so I can update you on how my efforts pan out!

So here’s Dr Kirsty’s diagnosis of her latest bout of algorythm-itis. A particularly nasty strain in my opinion!

The Symptoms

  • Many pages are being filtered and have less relevant counterparts ranked in their place.
  • Some unfiltered pages are sitting around result 50 when they should really be in the top ten.
  • Some pages rank fine for their target search terms. These are generally the ones appearing in the results in place of the filtered pages. This results in traffic getting to the wrong sections of the site, and reduced CTR.
  • My blog posts are no longer indexed instantly.
  • Just to make it interesting, some pages I’ve been monitoring have been penalised one day and fine the next.
  • The homepage cache date frequently “rewinds”.
  • I’ve written oodles of product-specific content around each brand on this site. They are included on the page via a wordpress plugin. The pages that are unaffected tend to have fewer brand relevant articles on them. They are more likely to have a few “irrelevant” articles about other brands.
  • Ouch.

My Initial Diagnosis (if these Google malaises actually exist!)

  • Several pages around result 50 to 60 does sort of point at a -50 penalty on some pages.
  • When I looked at my pages with fresh eyes and looked for a reason for a penalty / filter I realised the pages looked quite over optimised. Although people argue its existence, I’ve theorised this may be the over optimisation filter.
  • Alternatively, based on the fact that many of the worst affected pages had a lot of brand specific link text I wondered if Google might take umbrage at 1 ) there being too much link text on a page or 2 ) too high a proportion of link text being tightly aligned to a set of related search terms.
  • The plugin that places related posts on my pages repeats one article on each page twice, and the same excerpt is likely to appear on other site pages. This could trigger an additional duplicate content issue that has not manifested on the pages that have bounced back into the index.

Dr Kirsty’s Treatment

This is the list I will be working through step by step. In an attempt to identify what the issue really is, I’ll be altering a reasonable proportion of my site pages stage by stage to see what effect each alteration has. Therefore, the following steps are in order of “gut suspicion”!

  • The excessive link text is first up for alteration as it is the most consistent signal I’ve seen on affected pages. I’ll be reducing this on every page, but making sure the relevant articles remain associated with those pages.
  • The duplicate article excerpts will have to go. I’ll take steps to ensure that any article is only mentioned once on any given page and does not turn up in more than one place within the site.
  • Finally, I’ll go through each and every site page and reduce the “keyword density”, making sure the mentions of product brand names look natural and fall within a reasonable percentage range.
  • After that, who knows? Is it me? Is there an issue with Google? Have my 301 redirects to sort the previous problem caused some other mysterious issue? There will only be questions!

Phew! So there you have three days of my life. A lot of it has been conflicting and contradictory, but I hope I have pinpointed where the issues are at. I have to say this site was developed with a focus on Adwords traffic. My main concern was adding significant value. Which I am pleased to say has worked extremely. My pages have excellent QS. However, I now want to get the SEO sorted on these pages as they really had been bringing in a good amount of traffic (10K visitors per month and rising when they were slapped). Like any affiliate who gets what they want… I now want more!

I won’t be beaten Google, but why is it so difficult to keep both sides of the algo happy when you’re an affiliate?

Strangely though, I have sort of enjoyed the last few days. My once excellent SEO skills are terribly rusty, but SEO was my first passion before affiliate marketing. It has felt sort of good to re-immerse myself in it. At the same time, it has made me feel horribly inadequate – I have fallen behind with the Google times.

Any insight or observations would be welcomed from anyone who has had similar issues, or greater SEO knowledge than I.


Google Adwords Editor – Come On Google, Get It Right!

Google 8 Comments »

So here I am, frantically PPC’ing my little affiliate heart out to catch up on my Christmas preparations. As I mentioned in a previous post I have 90,000 Adwords listings to upload.

So yesterday morning I proudly present my 90,000 listings lovingly created with affiliate blood, sweat, and tears. What does Google tell me?



So I duly try again later. And again. And again. And again. In fact, I was still trying at 10pm last night. This morning I decided to delete everything and start again with smaller chunks of upload. The first chunk of around 10,000 listings went up no problems.

“Oh well” I thought. “Perhaps I just needed to cut things down a little.”

This afternoon, I duly pulled another chunk of 7,500 from my beautifully crafted PPC spreadsheet. What does Google say to me about my relatively modest request?



Modesty forbids me from actually detailing the rest of what I said when this happened again. Needless to say if there was a swear jar in this room there would be enough money in there for a trip to 2 to Barbados. Now, don’t get me wrong.. when it’s bloody well working Adwords Editor is enormously powerful and saves a huge amount of time by giving you the ability to set ads, adgroups, and keywords within a spreadsheet before popping it into the Editor for upload to your Google account. I regularly upload thousands of listings with a graceful ease.

But oh great PPC gods. Why today? Why now when I have so much to do?


Surviving A Google Slap – An Affiliate’s Guide

Google 8 Comments »

So you’ve been Google slapped eh? You are not alone. I had some extremely lucrative landing pages Google slapped last week. They probably represent a good 40% of my income at the moment. Ow. There’ll be a few less strawberry daquaris in Vegas for myself and dear old Duncan I can tell you!

This is my 4th largish incident with good ‘ol Google in my 4 year career as a full timer.

It wasn’t entirely unexpected I have to say. I knew they wouldn’t pass muster for long… I’d simply disguised the affiliate nature of the page. I’d hoped they’d hold out till I was home as I’d no time to create the amount of content required to get them compliant because of my travels. But hey ho… this is the nature of affiliate marketing these days!

Sounding a bit too cheerful am I? No funeral dirges, wailing, gnashing of teeth or general anger at Google? Nope. This game is about risk and reward. The rewards are great… but sometimes the risk will inevitably catch up with you.

So How Have I Insulated Myself From Google Induced Cardiac Arrest?

Anyone in immediate dire straits looking for a Google liferaft should move on now. This isn’t about a quick fix, it’s about planning and preparation.

What’s The Plan Stan?

1 ) I know EXACTLY how to fix the current issues and move forward. Nobody can tell you about that better that Kieron in his article about creating iron clad Google Adwords Landing pages. It’s really, really important not to stick your head in the sand when you hear them affiliate rumbles in the jungle about an impending algo change. They are often well founded. Although I’ve not been able to keep up with my content creation, I have kept an open mind about moving on and constantly improving my content.

The moral? Always innovate. Affiliate marketing is a constant process of learning and change. Don’t get left behind.

2 ) I don’t have all my eggs in the Google basket, or the landing page basket. That way, these little Google curve balls can’t send me racing off in the direction of paid employment. Gah!! I get cold sweats just thinking about that one. I’ve always got enough running on direct to merchant and other PPC engines to make sure our lifestyle is assured.

3 ) I actually have enough money for Duncan and I to live quite happily for 2 years sitting in the bank. I NEVER live up to the standard of the money I’m earning. I save it, and spend about 25%… still a great lifestyle and this removes any financial stress during a Google slap. Alright, that one is easier to say than do guys and gals, but it is something every affiliate needs to think about. Our finances are volatile. Don’t get lulled into a false sense of spending security when the good times are a rollin’!

4 ) I’m pretty confident in my own ability to get my 40% back within 3 to 4 months. Why? Because I always have some extra revenue ideas up my sleeve. I plan and think 6 months ahead at all times. When the Google slap comes crashing down it’s off to the notebook to dredge up all my current ideas and get cracking!

Perhaps this will help you in the future. It’s certainly helping me right now. It means we can still go to Vegas for a start!


No More E-bay Ads On Google. Handbags At Dawn?

Google No Comments »

Well, it seems that contrary to my speculation in my previous post, E-bay’s move to stop affiliates using Adwords paid search advertising had absolutely nothing to do with the auction giant looking to reduce costs on its in-house PPC by removing affiliates from the Adwords arena.

The two online giants are apparently having a bit of a lover’s tiff over E-bay’s refusal to discuss providing Google Checkout as a payment option for E-bay’s online buyers and sellers. Google checkout is a direct competitor to E-bay’s own in-house payment system – Paypal.

In response to this, Google planned a party named “Let Freedom Ring” to promote Google Checkout on the same day as Ebay’s own event, E-Bay Live. The aim was to bypass E-bay and promote Google Checkout amongst the seller community in order to create some support for the adoption of their own payment system. E-bay sellers can be an influential bunch, and have successfully campaigned for change in the past.

As soon as E-bay caught wind of this, they were naturally quite perturbed, with a spokeswoman commenting, “We don’t view that kind of activity as an appropriate activity for one partner to do to another.” Ebay then switched off all of their Adwords US advertising. Ouch. In response, Google have now cancelled their party but there is still a wide ranging outbreak of “petted lips” amongst various executives at E-bay and Google towers.

It’ll be interesting to see how this one pans out! Thanks to Rob At MarketingDrome for dropping me a wee e-mail about this one.

Read more here: –

ZD Net
Searchengine Land
Discussion at Webmaster World


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