I run a money site, and we also offer an affiliate program system.
My question is, will the backlinks created from people posting my affiliate links on their website hurt or help my ranking?
My site is
www.example.com and I have a product on
An affiliate link to that product would be:
Do these links (in case my affiliates do not block them or use nofollow) count as backlinks to my site?
As an example, Amazon use this method, and to avoid duplicate content the page
www.example.com/product1=?trackingaffiliatekey is CANONICAL to
However, this is Amazon, not a small business like me so I think Google might treat them differently.
So do you think it's OK for SEO to use this method with Canonical to the original product URL, or do you think it is better to implement a separate domain
example-affiliates.com and from that the affiliate links should 302 redirect to the appropriate
example.com product page?
I could go either way, I just don't want my site penalized by Google in case they think the affiliate links found on other websites are paid links. Do you think this is their approach?