Google won’t penalise for affiliate links without markup

It has been revealed that Google won’t manually penalise a website for publishing affiliate links without the recommended link attributes.

The search engine’s stance on affiliate links

Google’s Search Advocate, John Mueller, has confirmed that websites won’t receive a manual penalty for publishing affiliate links without the recommended markup.

In a statement released last week, he stated: “So, from our point of view, affiliate links fall into that category of something financial attached to the links, so we really strongly recommend to use this setup. But, for the most part, if it doesn’t come across as you selling links, then it’s not going to be the case that we would manually penalize a website for having affiliate links and not marking them up.”

This comes just mere months after he also confirmed that a number of affiliate links on a single page are fine so long as the content is considered valuable.

It is, however, still widely regarded as best practice for affiliates to include the recommended link attributes when posting affiliate links.

The ongoing growth of affiliate marketing

This comes as the affiliate marketing sector experienced rapid growth and development last year that was largely driven by mainstream media, bloggers, and influencers capitalising on affiliate links to monetise their traffic and replace lost ad revenues.

This trend is poised to continue into the new year as mainstream ad budgets resume and the popularity of the affiliate marketing industry persists.

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