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  1. #1
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Merchant Values for "status" (inventory status)
    During some testing, I just imported 114 "small" merchant datafeeds (these are files smaller than 5.5MB, and obviously excludes merchants like TheNerds and CSN).

    In reviewing the resulting database of about 280,000 products, here are the values that I found in the "inventory status" column:

    Terms indicating item is not available
    "soldout" - 1,617
    "weeks" (various, usually "2-3" or "4-6" weeks) - 687
    "Sold Out" - 563
    "backorder" - 315
    "cancelled" - 92
    "Coming Soon" - 26
    "Out of Stock" - 43
    "noninstock" - 31
    "Available" + date: 26
    "Currently Unavailable" - 5
    "on order" - 2

    Ambiguous values
    No value - 61,622
    "Status" - 3,942
    Space - 1,762

    Terms indicating item is available
    "instock" - 186,713
    "In Stock" - 17,179
    "1" - 3,654
    "days" (various) - 1,398
    "Available" - 984

    This is just FYI. I will be scripting to block the display of any items from the first group on my sites.

  2. #2
    http and a telephoto
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    I would assume that no value indicates "in stock". I thought that column required an entry, Shareasale has suggested values to use, but I don't know what the other networks require, or if they do require an entry.

    When consulting with merchants about their datafeeds I encourage them to exclude any references to products that fall into your first group.
    Deborah Carney

  3. #3
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    I also assume that the "ambiguous" values are intended to indicate that items are in stock. I am re-importing all the data once again and will check to see if any merchants have 'instock' for some items but blank for others; if so, that's something I'll certainly need to check.

    I also know that many merchants list items as "instock" which are, in fact, not in stock -- and were not in stock when the datafeed was last updated.

    One example I noticed was an item in one datafeed that included this text as part of the product name (title) field: "Out of Stock. Accepting order for May 2007 delivery." That speaks volumes about the currency and probable quality of that particular merchant's datafeed.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    FYI, after reviewing several dozen merchants who had blank values in the "status" field, I identified only one which seems to be a major problem. This particular merchant lists 57 items with a blank "status" field, and another 2,222 items with text in the 'status' field -- including "Coming Soon" (26), "In Stock" (1,631),and "Sold Out" (562). From a quick spot-check, it appears that items with a blank status field are in stock. (Personally, I find it offensive that any merchant would include 562 items in their datafeed which they know are not available; while I can adapt to this and avoid displaying unavailable items, it's very likely that many other affiliates will ignore the status field and display these items on their sites, resulting in consumer dissatisfaction.)

    I identified two other merchants with clear problems -- one has a datafeed with 99 items marked as "instock" but another 157 have blank status fields. The datafeed for the other merchant is simply corrupted, with line-break characters splitting many lines in the feed.

    I have sent an email to ShareASale and to the three merchants above, alerting them to the problems.

    Another 14 merchants have only one or two records with a blank "status" field.

    Another 19 merchants always have a blank "status" field.

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