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  1. #1
    Newbie
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    Newbie here, where do I start?
    Hey guys, I'm looking for some first timers advice. I'm the owner of GonnaLuvIt-com and I'm looking to start up an affiliate program. Because I'm unfamiliar with the affiliate world, I really don't want to spent a lot to test the waters. Can you guys recommend a good affiliate service that is pay for performance based or no "join" fees?

    Maybe you guys know of a site that has all the affiliate start-up fees for merchants? I tried looking around but only found a few with really high fees.

    I wish these affiliate companies were a little more up front with their fees.

    Thank you for your help!

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador Boom or Bust's Avatar
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    Hello. What happened the first time around back in '05/'06?



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  3. #3
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    Yes, 2 years ago, I did use Shareasale. However, when I logged back in, they want me to pay their $350 Network Access Fee. I don't feel I should have to pay that since I'm already a member and my account is still intact, should be Grandfathered in.

    Back then I didn't know what I was doing and had a very minimal experience. We had a very small inventory of 200 items and we have over 23,000. I just rebuilt the site and its doing much better now. So I figured we have much more to offer now, hence, I'm looking to start up the affiliate program again.

    So, I'd really appreciate you guys pointing me in the right direction.

    On side note, how hard is it to market my own program? I may consider this, if these start-up costs at all these companies are too much.

  4. #4
    Life is Supposed to be Fun! Rexanne's Avatar
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    Gonnaluvit,

    Your site is gorgeous and you could do very well with an affiliate program. If you want to recruit affiliates here, you'll need to buy an ad. Someone will be along to give you a link to the ABW advertising page. I can't seem to find it

    The 2 threads I would suggest you search for and read are The Magic Bullet Thread and one about "Cheap Merchants" - not implying anything, just that those 2 threads will give you plenty to think about and will serve as a launch for more questions you will have.

    Welcome!
    Peace,

    Rexanne

    Rexanne.com
    Loving Everyone's Child Creates Magic


  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador Boom or Bust's Avatar
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  6. #6
    Super Dawg Member Phil Kaufman aka AffiliateHound's Avatar
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    Boomers, Rexanne, its way too soon for advertising for him - as I read his posts, he does not have an active affiliate program.

    GonnaLuvIt, when you say "affiliate companies" are you referring to networks, or are your referring to Outsource Program Management companies, who manage affiliate programs? Assuming that you are referring to networks (such as Shareasale, Commission Junction, Linksahre, Performics, etc.) and since you started once at SAS and found the best and least expensive (from what I've read here) affiliate network not to your liking or pocketbook, what you should do is look through the OPM forum, read a lot of the posts that these guys have written, and choose 2 or 3 to contact and get their take on how to proceed. From what you've said, consider hiring one of them to get your program up and running.

    Then advertise here.
    Since June 10, 2012 a vegan aarf but still writing the Hound Dawg Sports Blog
    "If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?" -John Wooden;
    "Raj, there’s no place for truth on the internet." -Howard Wolowitz[/SIZE]

  7. #7
    Life is Supposed to be Fun! Rexanne's Avatar
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    Thanks for the link, Boomers! I've saved it for future reference. :-)

    AffiliateHound, guess you're right. I would love to see this program on ShareASale but if the merchant can't afford to open on SAS, he/she might not be funded well enough to open a program. It would be worse to see them go off line.

    Gonnaluvit, ShareASale is one of the least expensive programs to join and I've heard merchants say that there are no "hidden costs" in SAS, where in other networks that charge more, there are hidden costs.

    If you're ready to launch an affiliate program please do yourself and your potential affiliates a favor and have enough funding to stay afloat otherwise your reputation as a responsible merchant will suffer and you'll have a hard time overcoming the negative press.

    Another thread in ABW to search for is "Merchant Best Practices."

    Good luck!
    Peace,

    Rexanne

    Rexanne.com
    Loving Everyone's Child Creates Magic


  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador IOWNIE's Avatar
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    I, too, think your site has potential and is only missing a few things before I would consider becoming an affiliate (regarless where you had it hosted). Privacy Statement, a real Contact us page with address and phone # and an About Us page would also require a name with a face if I were to ever to buy anything from you.

    Having said that, there are many FREE affiliate software options scripts out there if you can't muster the costs of a real service. Chances are though you would fail with the free service as potential "good" affiliates would not sign up because of the "trust" factor.

    Step one for you should be to spend about $200 and get some professional advice from a repected OPM (see home page of ABW and sift through with caution).

    More than likely, they would eventually tell you to either not do one because you are really not ready to do one and if you were ready to do one they would probably lead you to Share A Sale - which is exactly who I would suggest as well.......but you already know that.

    Maybe you don't need a program, perhaps you need an investor?

  9. #9
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    Thank you guys very much. You've given much to think about and now I have a clearer direction to follow. I will research and learn as much as I can. I will take into consideration everything you've said. Please keep the advice coming.

    Regarding the ABW advertising posts, do those generally get a good response? My ecommerce software does an affiliate management function.

    Sort of off subject, but have you guys ever heard of SAS making their older members pay their $350 fee? I'm wondering if I can get them to waive it.
    Last edited by GonnaLuvIt; April 22nd, 2008 at 03:54 AM.

  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador IOWNIE's Avatar
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    What is the REAL reason you are so hung up on paying a VERY REASONABLE ( if not down right CHEAP) fee to be with SAS?

    Why are they expected to work for free? Administrative costs to set up new accounts, hosting, etc.... and if you get in line quick enough a absolute first class party at the Summit!

    SAS is by far the best bang for the buck! Think about selling $XXX worth of jewelry to net you the $350 you need instead of pondering if they will cut you a special deal. And remember, they might not even want you regardless if you are willing to pay! Its a two-way street.

  11. #11
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    New Merchant Can't see The End Of The Tunnel ?...
    GLI

    If you ever plan on becoming a merchant I'd suggest you follow scotts advice closely. He is a VERY smart guy. I also suggest you drop your objection to the 350 USD fee cuz you are likely to get get get derided as cheap or broke or possibly underhanded and you sure as hell don't want to send that signal here when you are new. Even if you don't mean to, people will get suspicious fast.

    As far as becoming a merchant goes, you might want to read Alex Betinski's thread on some merchant that Haiko helped Alex out with. I'm with Rexanne on this one. I sure ain't implying anything, but man you should for one thing have plenty of money to go forward with such an undertaking, and two you should be wide eyed about what happens if you don't. ~ Even if you just get stuck.

    As far as the fee goes. Yep. I sure see your point. However my question to you is how many thousands of times over will you recoup that 350 USD ? Andy Rodriguez taught me that. {Thanks Andy !} You must also realise that some folks are gonna look at your objection in that framework and ask, "OK. So WTF won't he pay that 350 USD any way ? ~ Whassup with all that ?" It sure don't look good.

    My guess is that you don't see how much you are gonna make in return. I just wonder why the network don't just tack it on to your commissions.

    I hope this contributes a little.

    Steve
    Last edited by Steve Williams; April 22nd, 2008 at 05:21 AM. Reason: Texas Spelling Spree....
    DreamLinux.net | Registered Linux User 453976 | PM me to view our sites. It's a Google thing.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by IOWNIE
    What is the REAL reason you are so hung up on paying a VERY REASONABLE ( if not down right CHEAP) fee to be with SAS?

    Why are they expected to work for free? Administrative costs to set up new accounts, hosting, etc....
    No, your right, I'm really not hung up on the fee, the $350 is not a problem. I just didn't understand this fee, being that I already have an account there.

    Please understand that affiliate marketing is new to me. I was simply asking for advice as to where I can test the waters. Judging by your guys' high opinion of SAS, I'll probably pay up asap.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteveWilliams
    My guess is that you don't see how much you are gonna make in return.
    Steve, your basically right. I was just being a little cautious in an area I'm unfamiliar with. Hence, wanting to test the waters.

    Again to all, that you for your excellent advice! I look forward to learning and possibly working with you in the future.
    Last edited by GonnaLuvIt; April 22nd, 2008 at 06:20 AM.

  13. #13
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    I just didn't understand this fee, being that I already have an account there.
    this is a merchant account? Do you already have a program on SAS? A new program would require a new account I would think, in case terms/commissions/etc. are not identical in both..and the tracking could get confusing. $350 sounds cheap for getting a new program off the ground.

  14. #14
    Affiliate Manager AffiliateWarrior's Avatar
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    Gonna, if you have been inactive for more than 6 months, I think they essentially take you offline, and require reactivation. Not sure of the details of the timing. SAS is a pretty good deal for $350 and the affiliates really like them. There are some other pretty decent networks as well. If you do catalog retail (lots of products) Avant Link is pretty awesome, but they are quite a bit pricier than SAS.

    I definitely wouldn't complain much about SAS set up cost here - someone else mentioned above - it could give affiliates a bad impression of your readiness to run a program.

  15. #15
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    You guys are right SAS is great and well worth the money. I already have my account up and running and already have some sales. Thank you guys for your great advice and good luck in your business!

  16. #16
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    They just opened on AffiliateFuture -> http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread.php?t=104703
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

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