AFFILIATE DISCLOSURE REQUIREMENTS & EXAMPLES
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Affiliate disclosure requirements and examples
In December 2009, the FTC released Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. The guidelines require that any affiliate who uses reviews, rankings or testimonials to promote products must clearly disclose the fact that they receive compensation for doing so. We require all affiliates to comply with these guidelines. Failure to do so may result in removal from our affiliate program and the cancellation of commissions. In order to comply with these guidelines your disclosures must meet four basic requirements. They must be frequent, clear, conspicuous, and require no scrolling or other type of user action to locate the disclosure.
1. Frequent: Your disclosure must appear on any page that has a review, recommendation, comment or article that promotes a product or service for which you receive compensation.
2. Clear: It must be immediately clear that you may receive compensation for your review or rating.
Example of a clear disclosure:
Disclosure: We are a professional review site that receives compensation from the companies whose products we review. We test each product thoroughly and give high marks to only the very best. We are independently owned and the opinions expressed here are our own.
Example of an unclear disclosure:
Disclosure: We are a website that needs compensation to operate like any other website on the internet. We may receive consideration for our reviews but we are totally unbiased and do not accept paid reviews or fake reviews claiming to be something they are not.
You cannot claim that you do not receive compensation if you receive payment through an affiliate program!
3. Conspicuous: The disclosure must be clear and easy to see. It should begin with the word “disclosure”
For the disclosure to be considered clear, the font should be:
Example of a conspicuous disclosure:
Welcome to Our Review Site!
Disclosure: We are a professional review site that receives compensation from the companies whose products we review. We tested and reviewed the web hosting sites ranked here. We are independently owned and the opinions expressed here are our own.
4. Require No Action: Your disclosure must be immediately evident to a typical visitor to your site who views a review, ranking or endorsement. A visitor should not need to scroll, click or hover to learn that you receive compensation.
If you do include a clickable link or additional information when a visitor hovers over text, the language of the link itself should reveal the fact that you receive compensation.
Example of a link that requires no action:
Disclosure: We are compensated for our reviews. Click here for details.
Keep this in mind: Simply telling the visitor that they can “Click/hover here to read our FTC disclosure” is not adequate. You need to use the word “disclosure” and present the nature of the disclosure.
More information about the FTC Disclosure requirements is available at:
Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising:
The FTC’s Revised Endorsement Guides: What People are Asking:
Dot Com Disclosures: Information About Online Advertising:
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