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  1. #1
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    SAS Merchants: Get on Auto-Deposit!!!
    Do you as a merchant know how frustrating it is for affiliates when you go offline due to lack of funds?

    I think auto deposit should be mandatory!

  2. #2
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    They even go offline with auto-deposit at SAS.

    Vietnam Veteran 1966-1970 USASA
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  3. #3
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    It is a HUGE aggravation. Fortunately, most SAS merchants are dependable, but those that go offline for more than one day are a gigantic pain (I remove all their links if they don't get back online within 48 hours, and do not restore those links until I'm convinced that they behave more professionally. Some merchants have NEVER been restored!).

    I continue to believe that SAS needs a little more of a "carrot & stick" approach to this ongoing problem. Here's a couple simple suggestions:

    * What is called the "Program Uptime History" in the Join Program info should be identified as the "Program Offline History"

    * Give a merchant a gold star in the Join Program info for every 6 months that they are continually online. So if you saw a merchant with 4 gold stars, you'd know that they managed to stay online for 2 years. Ideally you could put your mouse arrow over the last star to see the date it was rewarded. However, if that merchant went offline for more than 24 hours, then they'd have their last star removed.

    I'm sure there are other ideas that could be put on the table -- those are my 2 for now...

    .

  4. #4
    ShareASale President/CEO and ABW Veteran Brian - ShareASale's Avatar
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    It has been a problem though something that I think (in my opinion) a lot of progress has been made. We have tried to mandate auto-deposit and it really didn't take. I see this as something we are continually working on so any ideas are certainly appreciated.
    Thanks,

    Brian Littleton
    President/CEO - ShareASale.com, Inc.

  5. #5
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    If a merchant goes offline, maybe have links redirecting to a different merchant. Can this be automated by Shareasale?

    So if merchant A goes offline, all their links are automatically redirected to merchant B, who offer similar products.

  6. #6
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Julian
    If a merchant goes offline, maybe have links redirecting to a different merchant. Can this be automated by Shareasale?
    Cruel... But if this can be customized by affiliates on a merchant to merchant basis - good idea.

    How about offering merchants a free program optimization consultation as a bonus for setting up an Auto Deposit? Everyone then wins.

    Geno

  7. #7
    ShareASale President/CEO and ABW Veteran Brian - ShareASale's Avatar
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    Julian,

    Redirect is already available...

    In your settings there is a "Custom Error Redirect"

    You can send traffic back to a location you specify, and that traffic is tagged with a MerchantID so that you can redirect however you see fit.
    Thanks,

    Brian Littleton
    President/CEO - ShareASale.com, Inc.

  8. #8
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    I still say knowing the details (like we do at SAS) is far better than being kept in the dark about the merchant's readiness and current status regarding their ablity to pay... sometimes seeing the details, you think you're getting burned... my biggest losses over the years have all been things I never saw coming until they were substantial (and painful!). I deeply appreciate the details SAS provides - it's a transparency provided to affiliates that goes farther than any other network!

    Keep rocking it SAS, you guys are fantastic!

  9. #9
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    I deeply appreciate the details SAS provides - it's a transparency provided to affiliates that goes farther than any other network
    There is certainly no argument there, but even so, having said that, the offline merchant status still remains a real problem, and the question we raise is whether anything else can be done to minimize the impact that it has on affiliates. I commend Brian & the SAS staff for recognizing the situation, and their willingness to engage a dialog that allows us to offer suggestions.
    .

  10. #10
    Affiliate Manager bs0101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donuts
    I deeply appreciate the details SAS provides - it's a transparency provided to affiliates that goes farther than any other network!
    I'm not familiar with SAS's platform. Are you saying they make affiliates aware when the funds of a merchant they promote are running low or if they have not paid in full by the net terms date? If so, then you are correct, that's transparency all right.

  11. #11
    ShareASale President/CEO and ABW Veteran Brian - ShareASale's Avatar
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    bs0101,

    There is an RSS feed that affiliates can subsribe too which has entries for when merchants are either "Low Funds", or "Offline" and again when they are back online.

    Terms are "pre-paid" on ShareASale, so there are no net terms, etc...
    Thanks,

    Brian Littleton
    President/CEO - ShareASale.com, Inc.

  12. #12
    Analytics Dude Kevin's Avatar
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    Brian: Don't know if this has changed since I asked you folks a year or so ago, but is bank transfer or e-payment available to a merchant yet so they can move on autodeposit?

    Let's remember the chunks being taken on an affiliate sale...

    A few points for the credit card purchase, a few points to the affiliate and the network, and then potentially a few points in the form of credit card fees for the auto deposit.

    While I never saw it as an obstacle, I had a merchant that did.
    Kevin Webster
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  13. #13
    ShareASale President/CEO and ABW Veteran Brian - ShareASale's Avatar
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    Points on credit card fees? Not sure what you mean.

    ShareASale (the merchant charging the card) pays for CC transactions... but no fees should be seen on the Merchant end. ?

    Auto-deposit is possible via eCheck (a form of bank transfer), yes.

    We definitely hear from merchants who feel it is an obstacle.
    Thanks,

    Brian Littleton
    President/CEO - ShareASale.com, Inc.

  14. #14
    Analytics Dude Kevin's Avatar
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    I meant in the form of finance fees, depending on how you roll your credit, etc.

    But thank you for the clarification on e-checks. Was that always the case?
    Kevin Webster
    twitter: levelanalytics

    Kayak Fishing
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  15. #15
    ABW Ambassador La_Valette's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donuts
    I still say knowing the details (like we do at SAS) is far better than being kept in the dark about the merchant's readiness and current status regarding their ablity to pay... sometimes seeing the details, you think you're getting burned... my biggest losses over the years have all been things I never saw coming until they were substantial (and painful!). I deeply appreciate the details SAS provides - it's a transparency provided to affiliates that goes farther than any other network!

    Keep rocking it SAS, you guys are fantastic!
    Setting things up in such a way that this wouldn't happen would be far better. I don't have time to check in one every one of my merchants every day to see if they're online or not, and I certainly don't appreciate the effort involved in modifying links for those that aren't.

    Other networks don't seem to have this problem.
    Kids, you tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try. -- Homer Simpson

  16. #16
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Moderator Note: I've updated the title of this thread to get the attention of more merchants.

    This continues to be frustrating with some merchants. I just emailed one who went offline for the 44TH TIME THIS YEAR. They deposited more money within minutes of my email, but they had already been offline for over 12 hours.

    Maybe ShareASale should charge a $25 reactivation fee when merchants who aren't on auto-deposit have to make a manual deposit, or give an option to waive the fee if they switch to auto-deposit.

    Here's what I picture...

    When a merchant goes offline, they should get an immediate email alert and any screen they go to on SAS should have a big red window that says:

    Code:
    Your funds have been depleted and affiliate traffic to your site has been
    Code:
    disabled. You must reactivate your account and make an immediate deposit to
    resume receiving affiliate traffic.
     
     
    [X] MAKE A ONE TIME DEPOSIT	 [_] SIGN UP FOR AUTO DEPOSIT
     
    Reactivation Fee: $25			Reactivation Fee: Waived
    Deposit Amount: [____]	  OR	 Deposit Amount: [______]
    Total Charge: $25
     
    [AUTHORIZE]		 [AUTHORIZE]
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
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  17. #17
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    I contact merchants who are offline and once had one tell me that they would stay "offline" until an international payment had cleared. I told them they should contact SAS and see if there wasn't a better solution. Why accept international sales if each one shuts down your program for several weeks?

    Fortunately that happened while I was still finishing up their pages so those pages never went live. Easier to quit than try to deal with such a clueless merchant.

    I think Michael has a very good idea.

  18. #18
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    Maybe ShareASale should charge a $25 reactivation fee when merchants who aren't on auto-deposit have to make a manual deposit, or give an option to waive the fee if they switch to auto-deposit.
    Another excellent idea -- offer a carrot (no fee if auto-deposit) and/or a stick (the $25 charge). Good one Michael.

    .

  19. #19
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    emails aren't all that effective.

    I think there should be a telephone call and a more aggressive effort to determine if the merchant intends to come back online.

    There are merchants in the database that have been temporarily off line for years.

    Personally, I think there sould be a whole work flow where sales agents at SaS get busy on merchants shortly after they go temp off line. The goal should be to get them back online (preferrably with autopay) or permanently closed within a reasonable time frame of exhausting their funds.

    PS ... there should be a similar effort for zero EPC merchants.

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