Diligence - Step 1 - Examine The Site
By Steve Shubitz & Detective Thomas Shilling
The Internet is a dangerous place full of hucksters and scam artists.
If you fail to perform your due diligence before you engage
in commerce, you will (not if) be a victim. Want to join and or
start an affiliate program? Purchase goods or service? Subscribe
to an email list? All commerce on the net requires a close examination
of the site before you jump in.
This is the first step, which is often overlooked. Not a drive by
quickie, but a detailed look. A close examination of a site will
often yield areas of concerns, which I like to call red flags. To
many red flags and it's time to leave. A small number of red flags
don't always mean trouble.
Taking a close look - Exactly what to look at if you plan to:
1. Join and or start an affiliate program.
2. Purchase a site.
3. Purchase goods and or services.
4. Subscribe to an email list.
5. Purchase virtual or dedicated hosting.
6. Create a business that generates a profit in a moral and ethical
7. Seeking advice from others. Paid or free.
8. Hire an employee.
9. Hire an independent contractor.
Yes is good. A no answer is a red flag.
1. Does the site look professional?
2. Does the site work properly? Do all the pages and graphics
and Conditions page? Are these pages full of useful information?
Pay careful attention to the About Us page. Do you see a street
addresses and or phone numbers? The more information the better.
4. Read the Terms and Conditions page twice. Does it contain
any unusual terms? Do you understand it? When in doubt, don't
join the program and or launch your own, untill you have a crystal
clear understanding. Visit our geek/talk
Forums for help.
5. Right click on the home page and view the code. Do you see
other company names in the code that are different from the site?
Do you see key words that have nothing to do with the site?
6. If the site has an Opt-in email list, do you see a link to
7. If the site is US based (use Better-Whois
to see), do you see a COOPA
8. Does the site load in a reasonable time?
There are about 14 potential red flags in this procedure. If you
have the opportunity to talk with the site owner, you might wish
to raise these red flag issues in a civil and respectful manner.
Sometimes, issues slip through the cracks. Other times, you will
hear less than candid answer or perhaps no answer. We hope you
enjoyed this article.
Diligence - Step 2 - The Whois Records
This article is ©2002 by Free-Webmaster-Tools.com/Published
Perfection. All rights reserved. Reproduction in any form is prohibited.