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  1. #1
    15 years and counting
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    January 18th, 2005
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    Are we getting a tan or being scammed?
    Shareasale, PLEASE check your merchants from time to time.
    Have a look at HomeTanningBed.

    Their affiliate program shows already amazing stats:
    EPC: 7 Day $266.45 and 30 day $70.81
    How can they do that with an offer of $10 Per Sale $ 0.25 Per Lead?
    $10 for an average price of $2000. How much is that? Commission: 0.5% They must have been looking at the BestBuy strategy!!!
    I said average $2000 but all the products on the home page are more like around $3799

    A that moment, you should ask me: Where do you see the prices? Don't look for prices, there's none. Only: Call now for latest specials. For all the products on the home page. You'll find also a 800 number bigger than their logo.
    All the product pages have the Order by phone, the phone number and Save $1000 in bold letters. You have to go to the cart to find the price.

    I looked for the phone script to affect the sale to their affiliates: None.
    I checked the affiliates promoting them (Yes, they're some) no affiliate IDs for phone calls.

    I don't know if it's something new, the program started, Campaign Start Date: Feb-07-06
    Look at the trend graph, no sales for months and suddently a spike.

    Shareasale, your stats are skewed, your affiliates ripped off. Is it fair?

    Here's the link: http:// www. sas.hometanningbed.com
    ETS, Inc
    www. sas.hometanningbed.com

    Please, check the affiliate program and let me know what you think. I'm starting to wonder about my mental health. Is it me being paranoid or is affiliate marketing changing, again?

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    caveat aff..
    This should be part of any affiliate's training curriculum, lol!
    I don't know that they are violating any network rules though, I would guess that any sales are self referred.

    It would be nice if merchants had a basic network TOS like affiliates do but so far it is up to each of us to screen out the junk as we come across it. Nice to post the most outrageous merchant of the week, if only so that these losers show up in a screening search.

  3. #3
    Newbie
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    September 26th, 2007
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    34
    I have seen similar show up on 3 of my merchants sites recently. Call to order, call for deals, or call for more info buttons larger than the buy buttons on the products page. This is why I have been going through so much merchant switches lately and re-checking my steady merchants. A phone number to place an order is great and legit but these are buttons placed with the add to cart, bigger and offering a deal. It's like some previously steady merchants are turning sneaky, or perhaps they feel they will make better sales over the phone? I dunno, but I can't afford to advertise them.

  4. #4
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    October 16th, 2007
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    As much as I love SAS, they have had some scary things happening in the last year. Merchants dropping commissions form 30% to 1% without notice. Merchants skewing their EPC's.

    Pushing 1-800 numbers on merchants websites are a big deterrent for me. Especially when I'm looking to promote them with PPC

  5. #5
    15 years and counting
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    Shareasale did some cleaning already with dead merchants but they need to go one step further. Such merchants should not be kept in a network.

  6. #6
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    It's like some previously steady merchants are turning sneaky,
    Bad economic times often turn "neutrally-honest" and even formerly-ethical merchants towards sneaky methods.

    I would expect to see more scumball tactics arising, due to the continued economic tankage. Things like tracking being turned off, emails which overwrite cookies, the call-us scam in the OP, reversal mania, and more, will be going up as more merchants become desperate. (Of course, the newly-bad merchants will deny doing all that when you ask where your sales went to!) Unfortunately, these kinds of things usually show up before there are any news reports of the merchant being in financial trouble.

    And then there are the ones who suddenly declare bankruptcy one day, or just disappear into the night leaving nothing behind but a 404 page!

  7. #7
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    If you "Do the Math," You find some pretty interesting things. So let's take EPC or earning per click. Well is you make ONE sale and earn $20, on 100 clicks, you see
    a $.20 EPC. But if all of a sudden you see the EPC skyrocket to $1.00 per click, what could be the cause ... there are two possibilities ... you got 5 sales instead of one and the clicks stayed the same. You got the same ONE sale but the number of clicks dropped to 20. Which way was it? Or we could even look at it from a different view.

    The program made one sale and so only one affiliate made a commission. So one guy makes money, he keeps promoting the program ... Other guys who did not make money, cancel their PPC ads and pull their links, so the resultis a much lower number of clicks ... same one sale though. Result higher EPC.

    There are something like 1,500 so-called merchants on SAS ... I would bet clicks to their pages have been falling like a brick in this economy. Some have gone days and even weeks with out a sale. The only affiliates still promoting them are probably the only ones who have actually made at least ONE sale in the last 90 days.

    We have not even begun to see the fallout. People should be running out of savings and such sometime around tax time. Tax refunds will help a bit, but then what?

    I would not be surprised to see a summer without an economy, kind of like 1815 when Tembora blew up and people talked about the year with no summer.

    But the killer kicker is going to be the weather ... the Old Farmers Almanac predicts a brutally cold winter. Home heating bills are going to slam dunk whatever real chance there was for a new beginning under Obama-mama. It's suppose to be wicked cold in February - and these guys have been accurate enought to have survived for close to 200 years.

    Any one want to buy ceramic space heaters? HINT.

  8. #8
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    September 26th, 2007
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    net4biz, I agree with everything you say and certainly have seen my own numbers alter considerably. Still I do feel a few merchants - not all by any stretch - are turning sour. I am concerned with these guys and not the merchants who simply are not making sales. I can see on some sites how hard it has become for an affiliate to get credit. Others aren't like that but some have made drastic, affiliate unfriendly changes. It's changing, I am sure to do with the economy, both them and us. It's still supposed to be a symbiotic relationship, not a parasitic one. If they are honest with me and they don't make money neither do I so I try harder, not bite the hand that feeds me as they say.

  9. #9
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leader
    Bad economic times often turn "neutrally-honest" and even formerly-ethical merchants towards sneaky methods.

    I would expect to see more scumball tactics arising, due to the continued economic tankage. Things like tracking being turned off, emails which overwrite cookies, the call-us scam in the OP, reversal mania, and more, will be going up as more merchants become desperate. (Of course, the newly-bad merchants will deny doing all that when you ask where your sales went to!) Unfortunately, these kinds of things usually show up before there are any news reports of the merchant being in financial trouble.

    And then there are the ones who suddenly declare bankruptcy one day, or just disappear into the night leaving nothing behind but a 404 page!
    I agree with everything you said. It's going to be an "affiliate beware" year.
    leeann


    Shoppers determine what has value and they like coupons. Stop manipulating who set the cookie just because you do not like coupon and promotional sites.

  10. #10
    15 years and counting
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    Leader is spot on.
    Received these two emails this morning:
    HairGenesis affiliate program will be shut down 30 days from now.
    Shenoa Affiliate Program Not paying commission for 90 days.

    It's going to be an "affiliate beware" year. I'm glad affiliates are posting their bad experiences like:
    Boca Java - HUGE Leak

  11. #11
    ...and a Pirate's heart. Convergence's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeus
    ...
    HairGenesis affiliate program will be shut down 30 days from now...
    HairGenesis has already shows closed on SAS.

    ~ Denis
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Salty kisses, Sandy toes, and a Pirate's heart...

  12. #12
    15 years and counting
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    This was the second line of the email:
    "Please remove all tracking links before the deadline as they (HairGenesis) will no longer track after February 6th."
    Better doublecheck all these merchants...

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