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  1. #1
    ABW Ambassador Abigail's Avatar
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    Well, yesterday was a real eyeopener for me. I don't spend hundreds of hours building pages, optimizing pages, stressing over Google, just to hand my business on a silver platter to thieves that are even sending that business outside the CJ system, to boot!

    1. on AllWineBaskets the links are blatently obvious

    2. on AAA Fruit it is more subtle - the links are disquised as innocent titles down the right side of the page, like an index

    I am on the prowel today looking for any of my merchants that are affiliates in disguise and I plan to dump them all, I firmly believe they are just as bad, if not worse, than parasite ware - at least you know that morpheus threat is there, these other guys are thieving jerks, getting you to sign up and then changing the playing field mid stream!! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_mad.gif[/img] [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_mad.gif[/img]

    Abigail

  2. #2
    Domain Addict / Formerly known as elbowcreek Thomas A. Rice's Avatar
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    You know, sometimes I wonder just how much of this is intentional, and how much of it is just inexperience, a lack of anticipation in how affiliates will interpret your site's design?

    I do think that a good way to make money would be to create an e-book on the subject, then contact every single merchant on each network and ask them to consider purchasing it. Especially, the merchants that joined recently.

    It would be nice to make sure they actually are INTENDING to tick us off before we go to the effort of being annoyed, lol.

    I Will FOCUS On My Goal

  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador Ron Bechdolt's Avatar
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    And do you see the 1-800 number at the top of AAA Fruit Baskets. That does not help us either.

    Thanks for the heads up!

    Ron - 7 Days A Week Marketing
    New Motto: I will not let others make me feel small or inferior. I am an individual and entitled to my views as long as they don't put down those of others.

  4. #4
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Ever wonder where the CPC kiddie scripter thieves migrate too and mature? The turn their skills into spamming and becoming 3rd world network "pseudo" merchants. This is what CJ is becoming ..a 3rd world network and haven for all those who were booted out 2 years ago.

    These devious so called merchants know they can put up a few products and redirect the majority of their affiliate traffic to outside merchants where only they get a commission. saves them from having to get SE listings and pay for keywords at Overture -FindWhat and all.

    This is why I made my network meeting proposal have that addon section A-G where this type of merchant has to inform affiliates upfront they have non-commissionable products and outside links to sister/alliance sites or their own affiliate coded accounts.

    ____________________________________

    We, the affiliates and merchants of ABestWeb™, submit for the respective Ad Networks review, this "Honesty & Fair Practice" statement for the industry standards meeting on November 7th, 2002.

    Definitions

    1. ParasiteWare™ is technology (eg. bho's, browser plug-ins, toolbars or pop ups/sliders) used to retain or acquire new customers that knowingly or unknowingly undermines or removes another affiliate's ability to compete by changing , intercepting or redirecting a link from the originating link. Parasiteware™ may be installed intentionally or unknowingly by the end user altering their normal web browser functions and/or installing a 3rd party application that works through the user's altered browser.

    In order to utilize the the services offered by [insert network name] all affiliates and merchants, as defined below, must agree to use honest and ethical business practices as defined by existing USA and International business and criminal laws. Any action -misrepresentation or software application that circumvents or violates existing or future laws will be just cause for immediate termination from the [insert network name] affiliate network with loss of all network benefits and acrued commissions.


    *MERCHANT: A licensed business who collects money for products or services and takes responsibility for the delivery of the same to their customer. Merchants agree to pay all commissions derived by honest affiliate sales activity in a timely manner and devulge any activities that negate referral commissions. Those entities who agree to pay commissions on the [insert network name] network trackable actions, who are not involved in delivering a billable product or service, will be clearly marked as "special class merchants" during the affiliate signup process.

    AFFILIATE: An easily identifiable hosted domain who seeks commissions for driving targeted traffic to [insert network name] merchants using trackable affiliate coded links assigned to them. In order to qualify for a commission an affiliate has to originate the trackable click from their own authorized domain or from an e-mail marketing piece identifying their authorized domain.

    ___________________________

    Part 2: Merchant must divulge in their profile if they use any of the following diversion tactics:

    a] Whether the merchant uses a 800# call center that either acts as an affiliate or works on a commission basis without recording original referral ID# for commission credits.

    b] Third party gift certificate or gift registry services, who themselves are earning affiliate commissions by swapping their ID# with original referrers.

    c] This merchant selectively approves and works with "incent" and reward affiliates.

    d] The merchant's number of return cookie days and whether they are disabled after the first sale. ( no need to single out CJ for this request)

    e] This merchant has passed all network test purchase transactions done on a random basis at least once a month.

    f] Some sections of this merchant's website contain non-commissionable products or links to partner sites that do not track commissionable sales.

    g] This is a special class merchant who offers commissions based upon recruiting customers for outside parties or offers loyality shopping incentives.


    WebMaster Mike

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador Abigail's Avatar
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    Is it not in CJ's own best interests, and ours of course, to keep the business within the CJ community? Many of the links are going outside to other programs - I don't understand why they would protect these "False Merchants" and encourage them, by letting them operate from within using these tactics.

    I guess the money flowing out is not important to them ..............

    Abigail

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador ShoreMark's Avatar
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    quote:
    Originally posted by Abigail:
    I am on the prowel today looking for any of my merchants that are affiliates in disguise and I plan to dump them all,


    There are some that aren't really merchants at all, one that I was looking at dealt in books - the catch was that the book link (basically all of them) you provided for the consumer was never in stock with a note to check for other editions - those links went to Amazon with their associate ID in it. Other examples:

    A cooking site with free affiliate linkable recipes. I figured they were using them for the same reason I'd create a link to them - to sell their stuff when people read the recipes, but that wasn't it at all. Rather than promote their own products, the recipe pages were loaded up with 10 or more affiliate and/or advertising links to programs that I was a member of or competed with other products I feature and had absolutely nothing to do with cooking (unless diets work well with promoting cooking and eating [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_confused.gif[/img])

    An electronics site with "call '800-' to be sure you're getting the best price" in 18pt type at the top of any and all items that cost over say $50 or so. Yes, I'm sure those contract 800 operators would diligently collect the affiliate ID, as if the caller would even know it, [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif[/img]!

    A sporting goods merchant with all new graphics, each with a prominent 800#, uh, if you want to advertise your number on my site, you can buy advertising...

    Some of them just don't get it, others are simply trying to take advantage of the affiliate, so yea you have to keep your eyes open all the time, after you join as well, in case they take the wrong direction at a later date.

  7. #7
    Full Member drumminlogan's Avatar
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    quote:
    Originally posted by Abigail:
    Well, yesterday was a real eyeopener for me. I don't spend hundreds of hours building pages, optimizing pages, stressing over Google, just to hand my business on a silver platter to thieves that are even sending that business outside the CJ system, to boot!

    1. on AllWineBaskets the links are blatently obvious

    2. on AAA Fruit it is more subtle - the links are disquised as innocent titles down the right side of the page, like an index


    Abigail,

    I just thought I would let you know that they aren't affiliates, they are the same company cross linking there pages. I used to be a web designer for them. Gifttree is the main company, and they have a few other micro affiliate sites in CJ, AAA fruit, All Wine, Aarons Baby Baskets, 1 Stop Florists, etc. They have over 150 website. Once I left, I noticed all the sites have been cross linked.

    Logan Thompson
    Marketing/Affiliate Manager
    123 Christian Affiliate Program

  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador Abigail's Avatar
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    And so does that mean they are automatically giving us the commissions that are generated with sales to their other sites - I THINK NOT!! Even worse than I thought - I can't help that notice the the AllWines page is not looking at all the same way it did - other than colors - the professional business look is totally gone.

    Abigail

  9. #9
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    But what it does is that Google will likely ban them for cross linking.

    BTW, those sites are simply avenues for selling orders via FTD. They don't ship the vast majority of the inventory themselves.

  10. #10
    Domain Addict / Formerly known as elbowcreek Thomas A. Rice's Avatar
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    QUOTE:
    - - - - - - - - - - -
    I just thought I would let you know that they aren't affiliates, they are the same company cross linking there pages. I used to be a web designer for them. Gifttree is the main company, and they have a few other micro affiliate sites in CJ, AAA fruit, All Wine, Aarons Baby Baskets, 1 Stop Florists, etc. They have over 150 website. Once I left, I noticed all the sites have been cross linked.
    - - - - - - - - - - - -

    Am I understanding you correctly, you join 1 program, they cross-link with 150 other 'companies' they have listed seperately in CJ, and you only get credit for the 1 site's income, not the other 149? Or does joining 1 site give you access to all the others?

    If I am understanding that correctly, that seems like a bit of a shell game. I would sure like to see the names of all the sites that are cross linked.

    I Will FOCUS On My Goal

  11. #11
    Full Member drumminlogan's Avatar
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    quote:
    Originally posted by Abigail:
    I can't help that notice the the AllWines page is not looking at all the same way it did - other than colors - the professional business look is totally gone.


    Well that is probably because I left. :-) I designed the original site, but they have added a lot to it since I left at the beginning of the year.

    ElbowCreek,

    Not all there sites are listed in CJ. The used to have about 10 to 12 I think, now it is less. The rest of the sites don't have affiliate programs. And each program is seperate from the others. So if someone clicks through from your site to All Wine Baskets, clicks on a link from that site to another of their sites, that means NO commission for you.

    PM me and I get try and get some links of some of there sites if you would like.

    Logan Thompson
    Marketing/Affiliate Manager
    123 Christian Affiliate Program

  12. #12
    ABW Ambassador affiliatemakeover's Avatar
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    [QUOTE]Originally posted by Tzu:
    But what it does is that Google will likely ban them for cross linking. QUOTE]

    If the sites are all relevant to each other, why would google ban them? And how is google really going to know? I mean, they'd have to get a real person to go and investigate it right?

  13. #13
    ABW Ambassador Abigail's Avatar
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    Where is Todd - Maybe he should be reading this thread - I am sure CJ doesn't want the money walking out the door either - Now maybe all this is the explanation why Gift Basket sales hit the ditch about 8 months ago!!

    Abigail

  14. #14
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Good Old Gift Services Inc. acting like Global Sports Inc. as a merchant consolidator. Seems the sites probably share the same e-catalog and shopping cart program like Ashford-The Sports Authority-Fogdog etc etc at GSI.

    Often a real sales reporting tag snafu parsing the referral cookies from multiple nerchants and networks. No wonder my traffic to 3 of them just doesn't convert over the years.
    YTD STATS for Giftree.com total earnings=$22.97 sales=3 0 clicks=1,724 impressions 85,745 0.014 $0.30 0.003 EPC=$2.04 click to sales ratio 574/1

    MY FTD stats over 3 years is worse. This one seems like it has some leaks somewhere and some merchant webmasters insert cookie cutting scripts on entry pages on those cross links to further reduce conversion ratios.

    WebMaster Mike

  15. #15
    ABW Ambassador affiliatemakeover's Avatar
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    If I'm not mistaken. Todd and friends at cj have decided not to post on this board until after Nov. 7?

  16. #16
    ABW Ambassador
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    quote:
    If the sites are all relevant to each other, why would google ban them? And how is google really going to know? I mean, they'd have to get a real person to go and investigate it right?


    Answer to i) Because they are using it to artificially inflate their PR, which Google specifically mention as one of the things they will penalize for.

    ii) It's easy to see these patterns without the aid of a real human being. Also, Google do have real people to investigate spam. And if any of these sites get in the way of one of mine, I will let them know.

    Search Engine Positioning - 1 Design 4 Life

  17. #17
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    quote:
    Originally posted by markymark:
    quote:
    If the sites are all relevant to each other, why would google ban them? And how is google really going to know? I mean, they'd have to get a real person to go and investigate it right?


    Answer to i) Because they are using it to artificially inflate their PR, which Google specifically mention as one of the things they will penalize for.



    Exactly. They are trying to raise page rank, even if those sites are related. Many of us were smacked by Google when they decided last year that this was a form of SPAM.

    How will Google know about the cross-linking? They already do.

  18. #18
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    Way to go Abigail,

    I've noticed the same thing as well.

    I've been following your messages closely.

    You are a great detective. Keep up the good work.

    Cow Patch...

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