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  1. #1
    Newbie
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    October 6th, 2008
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    What to do about an affilaite merchant that does not pay
    Hi to all

    I am a newbie and have not actually visited a affiliate forum before. I have always operated on my own and as I have used Clickbank up till recently, have not had any problems that made me go looking for a form. And now I find this great forum filled with amazing expertise, I could almost say its worth it to have been rorted!

    I would love some advice.

    I recently tried promoting an affiliate product made available through adblaze. It began well enough but after a few weeks, the conversion rate fell to 1/3 of previous levels.

    I tried communicating with the merchant affiliate manager and eventually got an email back that really just did not deal with the matter. I began checking for information about the affiliate product and owner and very quickly started to find some pretty bad press about the guy - I immediately ended the association and found another affiliate product to sell (same type of product) which immediately began selling at double the BEST conversion rate for the previous one! (and still is converting well)

    Two problems:

    1) The guy will not pay the commissions he still owes (some $500) - no real surprise there after what I have read about him

    2) How can I help/warn other affiliates like myself to avoid this guy. I hate the thought that this guy is cheating many more innocents like myself, but cannot see how to go about warning others to avoid his products (he has several products that are marketed extremely well)

    No doubt there are many seasoned affiliate marketers here who know just how best to proceed.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    notary sojac Herb ԿԬ's Avatar
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    Hi, and welcome to ABW . . .

    does this merchant have terms-of-service with "catches" . . . like only paying if certain conditions are met?

  3. #3
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    Hi Herb

    I will check - but they have certainly not indicated this in emails. They say things like "will pay into paypal today" - and then NOT pay. And, on the stats page, they have it listed as "paid"

    So, I am thinking they are just not intending to pay and are just giving me the run around (especially as I no longer am their affiliate - and considering that they seem to have been fiddling with the sales/conversion stats, which is what sent me out investigating in the first place - the guy has some really bad press out there, I am not the first to be in this situation)

  4. #4
    notary sojac Herb ԿԬ's Avatar
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    well, good luck!


    [Mods: since the topic isn't an unethical affiliate probably should move this to a better spot in the interest of neatness?]

  5. #5
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    Hi Herb

    I have read the details as published on their affiliate page and the only limiting condition I could find was:

    "xxxx (the company they say handles the tracking and payment to affiliates) sends out payments twice a month no matter where you live! However, there has to be a minimum of $50 in your account before they will send a check to you."

    In fact, I have received no payments from them at all from them (mostly August sales)

  6. #6
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    Hi again Herb

    I am confused about your comment. This seemed like the right place to go - isn't this unethical behavior?

    Please explain where I should put these queries and why, as I clearly am misunderstanding something

  7. #7
    ABW Ambassador Boom or Bust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirons
    Hi again Herb

    I am confused about your comment. This seemed like the right place to go - isn't this unethical behavior?

    Please explain where I should put these queries and why, as I clearly am misunderstanding something
    Not necessarily. It's yet to be determined the reason for the problem. And YOU are the affiliate and they are the merchant.
    Have you checked with them to make sure they have the correct PP email address on file? It used to be that if you sent a PP payment to a nonexistent address, the payment is happily accepted and just sits there waiting. I know this question is probably trivial, but have you logged in and checked you PP account?



    X

  8. #8
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    Hi Ed

    Thanks for your explanation. I guess I did not explain that I received payment for July commissions with no problems. So, yes, they do have the correct Paypal address.

    And yes, I have checked my Paypal account - even as I speak - and no payment has been made.

    However, I will follow up and provide them with the Paypal account again - perhaps its just that (though I seriously doubt it).

    I must say I am surprised that no-one seems concern about the situation? Is this just so common? Or do you think I am jumping to conclusions about what is happening? Is it quite normal for affiliate payments to be more than a month overdue?

    I was actually asking what I need to do:

    a) to perhaps rectify the situation, and
    b) to help make sure others don't get caught

    I am not really asking for others to decide whether there is a 'case to be made'. I have not provided details of the offending merchant so there is no question of needing to prove anything here.

    But if there is a body to which this sort of thing can be reported, I would provide details and proof.

    I would really like to know how to proceed (not get opinions on whether the payments have or have not or will perhaps one day - when pigs fly, I suspect - be made)

    Anyone with experience on this?

    PS I am interested in your use of the terms "affiliate" and "merchant".

    As I say I am a newbie. Have I misinterpreted the purpose of this part of the forum and strayed in among affiliate merchants who are interested in identifying unethical affiliates?

    Which would make me an "affiliate"? And I am talking to merchants?

    If that is the case, then I guess I can understand the reserve expressed here and the reasons I am being asked "have I checked my paypal account"

    Sorry guys, but the merchant concerned really is a bad guy and obviously not like the merchants who write here. But I guess you won't be wanting to tell me how to proceed?

    Still, bad guys give you all a bad name wouldn't you say? Better to get rid of this kind of merchant, surely?

    I have to tell you that I am extremely nervous about taking on another merchant outside of Clickbank, as a result of my experiences with this merchant.

  9. #9
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    dirons you are an affiliate or publisher. I am an affiliate as are most of the members here. There are also merchants, Affiliate Managers and Outsourced Program Managers that actively participate here. I did not see the forum that you originally posted in, but my guess is that it was the Unethical Affiliates Forum. You are in fact informing us of an Unethical Merchant which is probably why your post was moved.

    OK, now that we've gotten that out of the way.

    Unfortunately a merchant being a month overdue with their payments is not that unusual. I know you would expect professional business people to perform professionally, but such is life. If you are still concerned about the payment then you should attempt to contact the merchant again and ask for an explanation as to why you haven't been paid. If you receive no response or a response that you do not find satisfactory then your next course of action is to contact the network and file a complaint against the merchant. Now don't get me wrong, this will likely have no affect on the issue (most networks will simply tell you that it's not their issue and you will need to work it out with the merchant, which of course you've already tried) however you will at least be on record with the network. If they receive enough complaints about the merchant it is possible that they will at least remove them.

    If you really want to pursue the issue than you can always sue the merchant in small claims court. Unfortunately for $500 that may be more trouble than it's worth especially if you and the merchant are in different states or worse, different countries.

    The sad truth is that we have very few options when we feel that we have been cheated by a merchant or network. Some here will say to accept it as the cost of doing business. That's crap. My advise to you would be to stick to networks that have a reputation for integrity and to ask others here about their experiences with specific merchants as soon as you start to feel that something isn't quite right. Also as you've found, there is a lot of information available online about specific merchants, in the future it may be a good idea to do your research BEFORE starting a relationship. And by all means, as soon as you know for sure that a merchant is disreputable, post about them here.

    -rematt
    "I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant." - Richard Nixon

  10. #10
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    Hi Rematt

    Thanks for an excellent and comprehensive response. I appreciate the advice. And, yeah, I will in future do my checking FIRST!

    But I would also like to help others to avoid the problem (at least with this merchant) - so if I don't end up getting paid, I will report back.

  11. #11
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    Good luck! Let us know how it goes.

    -rematt
    "I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant." - Richard Nixon

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