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  1. #1
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    Merchants Jumping to Conclusions = Bad!!
    Argh! Ignorance has reared its ugly head in my direction! And education is the only way to defeat ignorance. So here is some.

    Today I went into my CJ mail for the first time in a week or so, and I found a
    "notice of terms violation" from eVitamins.

    Seems he did a search on MSN and found what he considered a "redirect." I checked and found several people's CJ links listed prominently under the term "eVitamins." Mine may or may not (see Point Five) have been amongst them.

    CLUE TRAIN TICKETS!
    Number One! First and Foremost!! Affiliates have nothing to do with that happening! MSN has apparently decided to list the *links* on the pages it spiders, without doing a proper check to see where they go.

    If this is what people have been calling a "tricky redirect" THEY ARE WRONG! It's called "the engine's algo is fubared!" (Snafu'd, glitched, insert preferred term for f'd up here...)

    This kind of thing just happens sometimes. Including on Google, for the record. Nothing affiliates can do about it, that I know of.

    Number Two: Those links are from CJ's TRACKING and affiliates are *supposed to* use them!

    Number Three. *I* did not have anything to do with MSN deciding that the CJ Tracking Redirector is something that should be listed.

    Number Four! If I had that kind of control over what a search engine shows, don't you think I would have put myself under VITAMINS (with no 'e') at Position #1, In Google--not a relatively obscure term on a comparatively small engine?!?!?!?

    Number Five--if you are going to complain about anything to do with a CJ account, SAY THE SITE NAME! I have over 20 numbers there--one for each site I have in that system. I have no idea which of my links, if any, may have ended up as what MSN decided to show their viewers. I did not recognize any of the numbers and none in the first 50 correlate with the site I have eVitamins on. But there could be a link or 2 on one of my other sites, that I forgot about. Which one? I don't even know what site, let alone what number!

    And no I'm not going to go through all of them. Which I suppose could be another point: Affiliates aren't going to be motivated to check very far for a merchant that doesn't generate lots of sales!

    Number Six--Do NOT send anything with a "48 hour" deadline *just* to a network email box. That box should be for backup only. It's a wonder I checked that box within a *week*...sometimes it's longer. The reason is simple: Usually there's nothing of note in it.

    ------
    I have now written back with the main points (mainly that MSN is the one smoking something, and they found their dope entirely without my help! Of course I said that in a more formal manner.). It's 4AM now, so I'm sure I won't be getting a response just yet.


    On another note, I think lead-in spin increases conversions. So I want traffic to go to MY SITE FIRST!

    On the merchant-side yes, a sale's a sale and I think it'd be nuts to turn any valid ones down. BUT that does not, in any way, mean that I think it's *smart* to intentionally go direct-to-merchant. I don't think it is, so I don't do so, and I'm always a bit irked when some SE thinks my link is somehow more interesting than my sales pitch!
    Last edited by Leader; April 6th, 2008 at 09:00 AM. Reason: Got rid of unwanted icon that had auto-appeared.
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador
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    Thank you so much for bringing this up, it's a critically important issue that's happening with so many sites with a myriad of links - by a HUGE crawling/indexing problem at MSN Live, and is in no way at all the fault of affiliates - or anyone else for that matter - who have no control over how search engines store URLs to be crawled in their databases.

  3. #3
    Life is Supposed to be Fun! Rexanne's Avatar
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    Yep yep and yep
    Peace,

    Rexanne

    Rexanne.com
    Loving Everyone's Child Creates Magic


  4. #4
    http and a telephoto
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    Excellent post Leader, should be a sticky so we can send clueless merchants here.
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  5. #5
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loxly
    should be a sticky
    Stuck.

    Hopefully some will clue up!
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador Joshua's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leader
    Seems he did a search on MSN and found what he considered a "redirect."
    Can you post some of the original text from that email here? I don't see a keyword link in eVitamins (some idiot merchants confuse natural and PPC results), nor do I see why a "redirect" would ever be bad.

    But once again, I love merchants who think affiliates control natural search results...

  7. #7
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joshua
    Can you post some of the original text from that email here? I don't see a keyword link in eVitamins (some idiot merchants confuse natural and PPC results), nor do I see why a "redirect" would ever be bad.

    But once again, I love merchants who think affiliates control natural search results...
    The keyword he was worried about is the merchant name: "eVitamins." He mentioned a particular ranking, so I'm sure he was talking about natural search.

    It might be against the CJ TOS to directly quote emails from their system, so I'm going to refrain, since I don't really want to read the whole document now in order to be sure. I do remember that one person here had to have some quotes removed in a big hurry because someone from CJ was jumping down his neck.
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  8. #8
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    Here's one thing I noticed which could lead to a merchant jumping to some sort of conclusion. Sometimes I see a site:mysite.com/specific page in the logs and it's a page I just put up and doing some PPC for. And when they do that kind of search, it's not going to come up in the search engines, so they might start thinking something's up. When it's basically me making some pages, testing keywords/merchants out and IF they work for me, then I'll put up a link to the page, might build it out some more. So basically not all pages that are delivering traffic to the merchant are going to be indexed by the search engines.

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador Joshua's Avatar
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    Trust, the issue in this case is that MSN has stupidly listed CJ redirect links in it's index:
    Code:
        *
          eVitamins discount coupons and best deals in Nutritional Supplements ...
    
          eVitamins Discount Coupons: SuperDiscountShop.com offers best deals and discount coupon related to Health & Beauty, Nutritional Supplements and eVitamins
              o www.superdiscountshop.com/evitamins_s187.html
              o · Cached page
        *
          eVitamins
    
          eVitamins - for growth and wealthy business. The special aim of eVitamins initiative is raising ICT Awareness and Computer Literacy in rural areas, because here we have digital ...
              o www.evitaminai.lt
              o · Cached page
        *
          Endicia Case Studied - eVitamins
    
          eVitamins Great Vitamins and Nutritional Supplements at Great Prices. How does a leading supplier of top vitamins and nutritional supplements better fulfill the needs of its ...
              o www.endicia.com/CaseStudies/eVitamins
              o · 4/7/2008
              o · Cached page
        *
          eVitamins Coupon Codes - all coupons, discounts and promo codes for ...
    
          Find and share eVitamins coupon codes and promo codes for great discounts. Get the best evitamins.com coupon at RetailMeNot.com
              o www.retailmenot.com/view/evitamins.com
              o · Cached page
        *
          www.kqz*yfj.com
    
          Evitamins
              o www.kqz*yfj.com/click-PID-7200938
        *
          www.kqz*yfj.com
    
          Evitamins
              o www.kqz*yfj.com/click-PID-7201426
              o Show more results from www.***********
        *
          www.dpb*olvw.net
    
          Evitamins
              o www.dpb*olvw.net/click-PID-7200938
        *
          eVitamins Coupons and Promotions
    
          Welcome to A16's eVitamins coupons zone. We make a lots of efforts to keep eVitamins coupons up to date on this site. If you come across any other coupons being ...
              o www.a16.org/evitamins.html
              o · Cached page
        *
          eVitamins Health Supplement Store
    
          The eVitamins health supplements and vitamins store. ... alli Diet Pill Made By: GlaxoSmithKline $52.95 For Refill Kit (120 Caps) alli™ is the only FDA approved, over-the-counter ...
              o PHARMACYSAVINGSCONSULTANTS.COM
              o · Cached page
        *
          www.qks*rv.net
    
          Evitamins
              o www.qks*rv.net/click-PID-7218250
    I've removed PIDs for privacy (and munged the CJ domains), but posted the search results just in case MSN reshuffles that page.

    Source: http://search.msn.com/results.aspx?q...mins&FORM=MSNH

    eVitamins is basically blaming affiliates for "listing" their "redirect" in the search engine, when in reality, the affiliates have nothing to do with it.

  10. #10
    Affiliate Manager
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    I'm a merchant but I also signed up to be an affiliate to see the other end of the program. I applied for a program to see how the steps go. I have never done anything else. I am too busy trying to promote my own site, versus putting any energy into someone else's.
    Last week I got 2 mean spritited emails about how I am violation of this, that and the other. And, I have been dropped from thier affiliate program. And we have rules, blah, blah. I have no clue what they are even talking about.
    I never even did anything but sign up to be an affiliate a year ago.

  11. #11
    Kung Fu Master Eathan's Avatar
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    There seems to be a glut of affiliate tracking URLs showing up in the engines lately and not just MSN. Google's been picking them up lately as well and I expect we'll see more AMs making wrong assumptions until the engines finally catch on or the networks block the crawlers.
    Eathan Mertz

    Black Cat Mining - Gold Prospecting & Rockhounding Equipment

  12. #12
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    Was the original text from the email posted? I don't see a keyword link in eVitamins, and a redirect... wouldn't be so bad.

  13. #13
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    Maybe I am missing something, if an affiliate is able to high natural ranking for a keyword why would a merchant have an issue with that? Would it not be better to pay commission for a transaction from an affiliate then lose the transaction completely to another company?

  14. #14
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    Great Info
    I wish there was a "magic bullet" for organic ranking. . . but then everyone would be there with me too!

  15. #15
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aamir
    Maybe I am missing something, if an affiliate is able to high natural ranking for a keyword why would a merchant have an issue with that? Would it not be better to pay commission for a transaction from an affiliate then lose the transaction completely to another company?
    I think they are insane. But some apparently have the notion that if they get aff links out of the SERPs, miraculously, a free listing directly to the merchant site will appear in place of the affiliate's links
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  16. #16
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    With merchants sometimes I feel that they think affiliates have some special powers to drive people to their sites without using natural or paid search.

    In regards to get free listing, if their SEO program is not performing that is their fault and not the affiliates.

  17. #17
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    Let's just say that some merchants are just happy getting all the bucks in and ban some of their users when they know little marketers won't do any harm to their business.

    I used to be on CJ and was ban for.....only them to know as I never did anything wrong (I only had a couple of webiste a that time and just promoting their links on my pages)

  18. #18
    Full Member TerriFalcone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by salvationfr
    Let's just say that some merchants are just happy getting all the bucks in and ban some of their users when they know little marketers won't do any harm to their business.

    I used to be on CJ and was ban for.....only them to know as I never did anything wrong (I only had a couple of webiste a that time and just promoting their links on my pages)
    If you were dropped perhaps you should ask why. It might be a misunderstanding and it could be possible to correct it unless you do not feel it is worth you while.
    <a href="http://www.buzzymultimedia.com/afpr.html"><font color="#FF0000">Buzzy Multimedia Publishing Affiliate Program</font></a>--<a href="http://www.shareasale.com/shareasale.cfm?merchantID=13023"><font color="#FF0000">SAS Sign-Up</font></a>
    7-15% Commision, 180 Cookies, Bonuses
    <a href="http://www.buzzymultimedia.com">Earn Buzzy Bucks Promoting Sci-Fi & Fantasy Audio Books and Wicked Cool T-Shirts</a>

  19. #19
    hey marcia, are you the same marcia from another popular forum WMW?

  20. #20
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    Reply:
    Ah, interesting. I came across something similar some time back.
    removed spam link
    Last edited by loxly; August 21st, 2009 at 11:14 AM.

  21. #21
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    Here is the ULTIMATE trick if you get dropped by any CJ merchant for the usual drivel you have no control over: Send them this email.

    "Thank you for dropping me from your affiliate program on Commission Junction. Your insane cluelessness has saved me the time from doing it myself. I have replaced all my content favoriable to your site with new content and replaced all your links on my site with your competitors links. In addition, I have stepped up my PPC relative to your 'banned' keywords with the following ad:

    (In this case 'eVitamins.')

    Why Pay More At eVitamins?
    You Can Get Your Vitamins For Less Money
    With Better & Faster Service From Drugsotre.com.
    See For Yourself.

    Thank you."

    Then when you do the PPC, make your bid so your listing is one cent less than the merchant who just waxed you. Most people will check both listings. If you have a discount coupon for the NEW merchant prominently displayed when they click to your
    site or it's a direct link ... you have a good chance to make the sale.

    I love the smell of networks and merchants burning in the morning, because they have NO clue. It smells like victory.

  22. #22
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    This kind of thoughtless action causes one to be wary of affiliate marketing in general. I was recently banned from epn ... no explanation. I sent all the info i have to prove I am sending legitimate traffic and their response indicates they didn't even look at the log files.

    I was hoping CJ was better as I have been changing all my epn links to CJ affiliate links.

    Dear me!

    Lin

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