Thanks to legitimate business model of online affiliate marketing; many people are earning a good living working from home. Unfortunately there exists a series of affiliate program scams masquerading as genuine Internet marketing opportunities. These scams are designed to make their creators wealthy without providing value to their customers or associates. Email scams and work at home scams don't have any chance of long term success, so any time spent promoting them is largely wasted.
So what are characteristics that reveal an Internet scam attempting to disguise itself as an honest affiliate opportunity? Since nature and complexity of these scams change as quickly as technology, it's almost impossible to create a comprehensive list, but here are some strong indicators that a program should be avoided or at very least examined with a fine-toothed comb.
No affiliate support contact. When an affiliate program includes a toll-free telephone number, it's a good sign that things are on up and up. However, lack of a phone number does not necessarily mean program needs to be avoided. The Internet lends itself to email contact, and most websites structure their contact support system accordingly. If website for an online income opportunity does not include an email or a contact form, though, you are probably looking at an affiliate program scam. Once you locate email or contact from, it's a good idea to send a message with a simple question to see how long it takes company to respond. If you don't receive a response addressing your question within a few days, tread lightly. The company might not be intentionally trying to scam you, but if they can't quickly respond to emails, they are doing something wrong.
No web site. Similarly a contact email without a website shouldn't instill much confidence. A legitimate online income opportunity will have a detailed web site, providing information and showing some time and energy has gone into planning. A simple website is not difficult to create, but leaves a slightly larger trail leading back to creator than that left by a mass emailing. Again, while presence of a web site is not a guarantee that a program is trustworthy, absence of a web site should definitely be viewed with a healthy dose of skepticism.
No product or service. What is company selling? If only product is a chance to make money, you've probably stumbled onto a pyramid scheme. In order for any referral marketing organization to make money, someone on outside must pay money to organization. If only people paying are joining organization, than no income is being generated. The members are just passing money around between themselves with everyone hoping to be holding bag of money when music stops. Above and beyond this fundamental flaw in business model, pyramid schemes are also illegal in United States.