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  1. #1
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    Greetings all,

    I am interested in hearing your thoughts on what type of merchandising information & affiliate tools you find most valuable. Best selling items lists? Upcoming promotion notifications? Lists of big ticket items with high conversion rates? New affiliate technologies? SEO strategies?

    Thanks,

    J.T. Stephens
    Affiliate Program Manager
    Overstock.com
    801.947.3234
    jstephens@overstock.com

  2. #2
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Nice to see your requesting feedback JT. Questions were raised about your coupon links and landing page for those special offers. Congrats on doubling your last 2 quarters sales by streamling your cart checkout proceedure to just 3 screens. Eliminating the "place coupon code here" screen and the non-essentail info gathering eliminated most all your cart abandonments.

    I understood all your BIG O shoppers automatically get credited with monthly specials advertised on your site and in the LS linking area. Is it true the coupon promotion links, like 15% off on orders over $XXX, all land on the home page and the OS cart applies credits regardless of affiliate linking promotions.

    Second have you ever tried my suggestion to make the category DRM's key up displays based upon total dollar sales rather then the total # of items sold. This would automatically eliminate the cheapos and show a greater breath of your name brand offerings. Many like me are sick of seeing Jewelry DRM's showing those same 9.98 items. Want ot increase your average order size & CTR off those DRM's try the above.

    One gripe is I still haven't received my December OS commissions check even though LS shows it was sent on the 26th. This is a first for 3 years of prompt payments.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  3. #3
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    Wow J.T. Stephens,

    I am earnestly shocked to see you here requesting feedback. Kudos’

    Biggest issue with me is your time consuming Data feeds. What a major PITA.

    Love that you have separated the feeds so they can be utilized with numerous categories.

    Coding them for an individual site is the bear, could you not simply supply the feed with the normal URL and utilize replace PID HERE? Having to log in and get the blasted code then changing and combining with as many feeds as you maintain is simply time consuming. I used your feed once and made some sales. But the amount of Darn work they required turned me off them.


    My Preferences

    1. Upcoming promotion notifications?
    2. Best selling items lists?
    3. Lists of big ticket items with high conversion rates?

    SandraR

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    JT, this is the thread Mike is referring to:

    http://abw.infopop.cc/6/ubb.x?a=tpc&...065#2846040065

    I think he has it wrong...He seems to think the coupons you give us don't work and that you always put credits in the shoppers carts and if they get over a certain dollar amount of products in their cart they get that discount whether they clicked on an affiliate coupon link or not....

  5. #5
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    A comprehensive commission rate.

    What do you define as media -> 3% commission
    What do you define as non media -> 7% commission

    Which datafeeds qualify for which commission payout.

    Parasites are thieves. What are you going to do about it?

  6. #6
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    I prefer early notification of upcoming promos. You guys are pretty good about getting things out in time.

    I prefer you keep those high-converting products a secret (I think I already found them),

    but if you are getting something new in stock soon (like a big shipment), that would be a big advantage if you let me know in advance (could get the market ready for them, then when they hit the warehouse they are chomping at the bit to buy).

  7. #7
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Everything you're doing is absolutely fantastic. Your frequency, quantity, and variety of coupons is perfect. Your on-site promotions are great. Your datafeed is one of the best out there. Your shipping rates are extremely reasonable.

    Advance notice of your coupons (even by just a day) would be great. Making sure the coupons work as early as possible on the day they come out would also be great. Advance notice of your on-site Sun-Mon, Tue-Wed, and Thu-Sat sales (5% off, 10% off, or Free S&H on select categories) would also be helpful. And those $1 S&H or FREE S&H days every now and then really boost conversions, too!

    I'd love to see you guys re-open your forum here on ABW.

    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com

  8. #8
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    Since you asked....
    Get rid of all the flippin coupon offers so the abuse of them stops

    My site stats on search term for overstock.com pulled up a page of almost nothing but coupon sites, many of course had nothing to do with offering anything but basically spamming the results. Have nothing against legit sites, but they are tough to find in all the sites that come up.

    ...............
    WW

    Make a difference! Support your local Cancer Care providers.

  9. #9
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    LOL ...WW. Overstock one day will realize a majority of their shoppers have popup blockers active and they still get flooded with e-mails and calls when the shoppers can't find the coupon credits. Please explain the coupon procedure for all here as the SERPs are full of OS coupons on every possible search term.

    Coupons are a great advertising motivator for full priced merchants. Even Connies shoppers get pissed when they can't even find them on OS landing pages. No popup =no coupon=no sale. Then I'll suggest overstock takes a 101 course in why none of their brick-n-mortar competitors ever advertise coupons in the newspapers and take a hit in the pocketbook. Then again how can you wean the spamming couponers who could give a rats ass if their shoppers can't see them or get credit for them as long as the cookie gets set. JT ..care to guess how many shoppers have popup blockers installed and activated?

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    If you look at my Overstock listings, I do mention that the coupon shows in a popup...so if they want the coupon they have to disable their blocker..

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    Wholly Crap Batman! I did a google search for Overstock and couldn't believe all the links that are auto cookie setters! Click on the search link and the coupon site opens and so does a new window for overstock!

  12. #12
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Connie dear..put your thinking cap on. If Overstock can move $50 million in product orders every quarter, what do you think their real conversion ratio is? My bet is they average 1 sale per every 40 clicks regardless of the traffic source. The thousands of die hard SE spammers and cookie tricksters are ALL overstock affiliates, amongst others. Your only getting 20% of the orders you deserve from your overstock traffic if they don't buy on the first click.

    Overstock=Overexposure and till they clean house on their abusers they'll continue to show even their Supers & portals piss poor conversion ratios well under the % garnered from untargeted traffic. Your success will be by informing FlamingoWorld shoppers to turn off their popup blockers and treat them as a session only cookie merchant.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  13. #13
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    First, I think Shawn shot himself in the foot when he encouraged sites to automatically set cookies. That means thousands of tricks for clicks artists playing overstock.

    These are sites that call the Big-O in an iframe or in a popup to set the cookie. It is garbage traffic.

    I also agree that overstock should stop having the coupon show up in a popup. Most people today run popup blockers. Merchants cannot have any code that is dependent on a popup.

    Overall I am pleased with the program.

    CrassCommercial.com

  14. #14
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    Shawn from Overstock never encouraged anyone to use iframes, it was Shawn Collins from ClubMom that sent the email out to his affiliates encouraging doing that.

  15. #15
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> Wholly Crap Batman! I did a google search for Overstock and couldn't believe all the links that are auto cookie setters! Click on the search link and the coupon site opens and so does a new window for overstock! <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> My site stats on search term for overstock.com pulled up a page of almost nothing but coupon sites, many of course had nothing to do with offering anything but basically spamming the results. Have nothing against legit sites, but they are tough to find in all the sites that come up.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I have a number of pages of Overstock needing to be updated. Now I see why traffic has become non existant and hardly appears to be worth targeting

    They may not like our replies but they asked!

    ...............
    WW

    Make a difference! Support your local Cancer Care providers.

  16. #16
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    I have a hard time to find some categories in your datafeed. I would like it to be divided like on your website and it's not the case. I can send you the missing categories if you wish.
    I'll like to see more DRMs. For a few departments it's too generic and not enough targeted.
    Overall, I like the new way you're running your affiliate program. My links to the Big O are back and I did a killing in December.
    Regarding your coupons, if you ask me, I'll like you to get rid of them. Why don't you offer the same offers on specific pages on Overstock site without having to enter a stupid code in a stupid box. Like that each affiliate can direct the traffic to your site for the same offer without having the customer searching everywhere a better coupon that's not available.
    Also, pls, check your affiliates and forget about the second chance for whose of us not playing by the rules.

    It's not the big that eat the small... it's the fast that eat the slow. Jennings & Haughton

  17. #17
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by EcomCity.com:
    No popup =no coupon=no sale.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Once again, Mike proves that he doesn't know what he's talking about. The coupon gets applied during the click-through. The popup only displays details. If you disable popups, you still get the coupon discount. You just don't see the details until you get to your shopping cart.

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by EcomCity.com:
    Then I'll suggest overstock takes a 101 course in why none of their brick-n-mortar competitors ever advertise coupons in the newspapers and take a hit in the pocketbook.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Mike, have you ever LOOKED in a Sunday paper? Coupons work. That's why stores use them.

    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com

  18. #18
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    Overstock.com spent heavily developing a brand this fall and winter, with an image of trust, quality, and good service, but when the customer gets to the checkout, many end up going to trashy coupon sites.

    As you can see, the online affiliate marketing has degenerated into a scramble for coupons and cookies. Customers left with the image of pop-ups and trash.

    I only list the coupons because I have to.

    (Connie et al., calm down, there is nothing wrong with coupon sites. OK?)

    Overstock, PLEASE try to pay some attention to affiliates who are pushing products. And I do not mean data feeders. We push your products, we deliver the shopper, and you get the opportunity to develop that relationship with the customer (without all the trashiness).

    The newsletter is just all about coupons. If you address the rest of us, then we will be able to deliver the customers better.

    What hot PRODUCTS do you have arriving this week?

    We already know what COUPONS you have. Are we supposed to sell coupons?

  19. #19
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    Thanks!

    All of your feedback is invaluable. Keep it coming. I am taking copious notes and plan to address many of these issues in the near future. Again, please be sure to read our newsletter as it often times answers some of the above questions.

    Cheers,

    J.T. Stephens
    Affiliate Program Manager
    Overstock.com
    801.947.3234
    jstephens@overstock.com

  20. #20
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    just 2 main things for me that would help

    Go through and get rid of all outdated creative. Coupon text links, I'm making them from the banners unless they're somewhere else and i'm missing them. thanks

  21. #21
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    $1 Shipping only at Overstock.com! Hurry ends December 1st!

    Save up to 80% everday, and now get an additional $5 off any order of $75 or more! Overstock.com (Expires 08/31/03)

    That kinda thing, can't find any text links for this months promotions.

    I work in lounge pants

  22. #22
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    quote:
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Originally posted by EcomCity.com:
    Then I'll suggest overstock takes a 101 course in why none of their brick-n-mortar competitors ever advertise coupons in the newspapers and take a hit in the pocketbook.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Mike, have you ever LOOKED in a Sunday paper? Coupons work. That's why stores use them.

    Find me some CostCo and Sam's club coupons then as I never see them. Only the wholesale clubs are Overstocks brick-n-mortar competitors.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  23. #23
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Unsuccessful affiliate maybe ...but often the first one Overstock and others call when their program and sales head south.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  24. #24
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by EcomCity.com:
    Find me some CostCo and Sam's club coupons then as I never see them. Only the wholesale clubs are Overstocks brick-n-mortar competitors.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Sam's mails us coupons. It gets us into the store, too.

    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com

  25. #25
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    I get coupons in the mail from Sam's Club too, lots of times with my monthly statement, sometimes just a postcard type thing.

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