Protecting Your Sites and Yourself From Competitors

by WorkFromHome on July 20, 2011

In all business ventures, you will be dealing with competitors and other people who would be interested in interfering with your success. When you’re working from home to make money online, you are at an exceptional amount of risk from people like this since their actions won’t be tempered by any guilt of having to see you on a regular basis in person. Because of the reality that there are people out there who could be motivated to sabotage you, proper defensive measures are necessary. The measures recommended here aren’t particularly difficult, but are rooted in effectively countering the most common forms of abuse and sabotage that occur for people making money online through blogging and the promotion of affiliate programs.

Guarding Your Keyword Lists, Market Research and Business Plans

As a general rule, you never want anyone other than yourself to see your keyword lists, market research or business plans. If at all possible, they should be kept in password-protected files stored locally on your computer in a place where it would be more difficult for someone to gain unauthorized access to your files. This information is critical to the operation of your business, and if a competitor was to obtain these files, then you could face some very fierce competition using your own information against you.

A mistake that happens over and over to people involved in blogging and affiliate marketing is they give out their keyword lists to someone they have hired to perform some task. The problem is that the person you have hired can now become your competition, and was paid to do so. To avoid making this mistake, keep to the general rule outlined above, and never give away your keyword lists to anyone.

Dealing With Landing Page Theft

Another common scenario, especially in affiliate marketing, is a competitor stealing your landing pages. It’s difficult to keep this from happening since the source code for the website is automatically displayed when they view your landing page, but you can strike back in a very clever way. In each landing page, you should make the code as difficult to read as possible, while keeping a neater version saved locally for yourself. Inside of this code, you should hide a few calls to include JavaScript files that you have saved on your web hosting account. If a competitor then simply copies and pastes the source code of your landing page to create his own landing page, then you have the ability to run code on his page for anything you want. With this trick, you could force his page to redirect to your website to snatch his traffic away from him, or you could simply cause his page to appear blank. The possibilities are endless.

Protecting Your Content

For bloggers especially, the threat of someone stealing your content is a big one. If a person steals your content and claims it as their own, this causes unnecessary competition in the search engines, which brings your rankings down. With the decrease in rankings, you’ll lose money, so it’s particularly important to look out for people or scraper bots that steal your content.

If it comes time to press legal action against a site owner for copyright infringement, it’s going to be helpful to have as clear of a case as possible. To this end, it’s a good idea to have timestamped backups of all of your content saved locally. This way you can prove that you created the content when you claim you did with a clear piece of evidence that will eliminate all doubt about who the true creator of the content is.

Other Sensitive Information

A lot of general Internet safety ideas become even more important when you do business online. You want to avoid having your real life name, address or phone number associated with your online business. To help with this, you should use different screen names on different forums and communities, and avoid linking them together or with your websites in any way.

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