Problems With Product Reviews
The content here at Workonlinefromhome primarily consists of two things – helpful articles about how to set up and maintain your online business in affiliate marketing, and product reviews. The reason for writing the “how to” articles should be obvious; it’s a way to help people learn how to do things. The reason I write product reviews is a bit more complex.
I write product reviews for several reasons. There are tens of thousands of products out there that promise, for a price, to either make money for you or to help you make money easier or more quickly. A few of those products work, but most of them do nothing. While it is possible to make money online, you’re going to get quickly discouraged if you jump in as a newbie and spend a lot of money on junk products or scams, when you could be putting your time and money into something that will do a better job of helping you. Part of what I do is to help you find the products that will help you, so the product reviews, good and bad, work towards that goal.
Product Reviews and Feedback
While it seems that most of the product reviews I write are negative ones, I do occasionally find products that I like and I give them a thumbs up and tell you that I think you should buy them if you think they’ll help you. The reasons for most of the reviews being negative is twofold:
1. Most products in the make money online niche simply aren’t very good.
2. More people seem to be searching for reviews of the bad products and scams than reviews of good products.
Since I’m interested in getting traffic from search engines, I tend to review products that people are searching for, and that leads me to writing more product reviews of scams and bad products than good ones. I do recommend the products I like, and that’s where the trouble comes in.
It seems that some people who have purchased scam products not only like them, but are passionate about them. In fact, they feel so strongly about them that they feel compelled to leave comments on this site and send me email telling me that I don’t know what I’m doing, that I don’t understand what their pet product is all about, that I’m just an idiot, or that I’m really writing bad product reviews about good products because I would rather have you buy some product I’m promoting instead.
I allow comments on this site, so you’re free to say what you like about any product I review. There are hundreds of comments here and not surprisingly, most of those comments are about reviews of products that I have declared to be scams. I moderate the comments, partly to keep out the link spammers, but partly to keep out the nasty comments from people who want to attack me personally for saying something unkind about a terrible product that they personally happen to like.
One such product review, and the one that seems to generate the most comments directed at me personally, is the review I wrote for a product called Internet Business Kits. This one seemed pretty straightforward, and you don’t have to do more than about ten minutes of research to discover that the $197 Internet Business Kits is a scam. The sales page (and numerous resellers of the product) claim that you can get “unlimited” payments of $150 into your PayPal account and that the product, also known as IBK, will give you everything you need to do that – a Web page, sales copy, and even email messages.
Great. So what are you selling when you buy Internet Business Kits? Nothing. All of the sales materials you get when you buy IBK are designed to help you resell Internet Business Kits. When someone agrees to buy it from you, they pay you $150 and they pay $47 to the creator of the product. For them to make money, it’s now up to them to create a Web site that persuades other people to buy IBK.
You’d think that this is obviously a scam. There’s no product of any kind. You aren’t making money by selling products to the public; you’re only making money by recruiting new sales people. This is, according to U.S. law, at least, the very definition of a scam. I thought this was something that would be obvious to everyone.
Not the case. I’ve gotten lots of negative comments and plenty of angry email from people who bought IBK and who claim that I don’t understand the business model. They claim that I’m just an idiot who doesn’t understand anything. They claim that IBK is no different from the training program that I do recommend, although that program and IBK couldn’t possibly be any more different. They claim that I’m saying bad things about IBK in order to promote another product instead.
Here’s the thing – I created this site to help people learn how to make money online in an honest way that can be done by anyone. I don’t promote a particular method of making money, but instead just point out that there are a few universal truths in this business that seem to work for any niche, day in and day out. I also recommend occasional tools and training that can help you learn more, learn faster or get things done more quickly. If I see a product that I like, I’ll recommend it, even if it’s not the primary product that I promote here on the site.
Internet Business Kits isn’t the only program for which I get such angry comments and email and it won’t be the last. I also get them for MOBE, and even some of the fake paid news sites for which I’ve been writing a lot of product reviews lately. What I don’t ever get comments of any kind about, oddly enough, are the products I actually like. I don’t know if it’s that people feel guilty about being scammed by products like IBK and if that makes them feel obligated to defend them, or if they’re really so poorly informed about how that product works that they think they need to attack me for saying the obvious – the product is a scam.
Product Reviews Summary
In the end, it all comes down to this – if you write product reviews, you’re going to find that there are people who take exception to what you write and feel obligated to attack you about it. Most of the time, you’re going to get these attacks over the product you dislike, rather than the ones you recommend. It just goes with the territory. You can minimize it, and I do so by adding filters to my comments section that automatically block comments containing “Internet Business Kits”, “Affilorama”, “MOBE”, “Wealthy Affiliate” and a few others for moderation. That way, I can review them before their published and keep the comments section civil.
Honest product reviews are a good thing and I think they help people. Sometimes, however, they bring out the worst in people. That’s just how it goes.