By: Rob Wood
Lead fraud is possibly the largest obstacle to successful lead gathering via Affiliate marketing on the internet. Finding pre-qualified leads online can be either very successful or very frustrating depending on how you set up your program to deal with fraud.
Gathering leads through an Affiliate program can be a very successful venture if you find the right Affiliates. Names and contact details of people who have an active interest in your product increases conversion rates for offline sales and hopefully increases your bottom line. That benefit may, however, be adversely affected if the time you spend sifting through rubbish leads becomes too great. But there are a few things you can do.
As with all Affiliate programs, you will need to choose your Affiliates wisely at the beginning to have a fraud-free campaign. This means manually vetting Affiliate applications to join your program. Look at other sites your Affiliates have gathered leads for and ask for references if you think it is warranted. Remember also that seeking legal redress against fraudulant Affiliates is much easier to do in your home country, or countries with a similar, enforceable legal systems. Be sure that you know all of the contact details of your Affiliates so if something goes wrong you can contact them quickly.
Monitoring Your Lead Campaign
You will need to monitor your campaign manually, especially at the beginning to ensure you are receiving quality leads. Look at the leads you are receiving - if they all exhibit similar properties then you could have a problem. Things to watch out for include similar spelling mistakes on each lead (which would indicate one person is filling out the lead many times) and identical IP addresses (which could also indicate that one person is filling out the lead form several times or getting friends and relatives to do it). You will need to keep doing this manually until you are happy with your Affiliates and the quality of leads they are sending through.
With just a few hours of diligence at the beginning when you are setting up your lead campaign you can avoid days of frustration. The bulk of lead fraud is preventable - it just takes a little planning.
About The Author
Rob Wood is a professional Affiliate fraud investigator. He runs a site over at eFraudster on click fraud and general affiliate fraud prevention. http://efraudster.com.
This article was posted on November 17, 2005
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