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  1. #1
    Newbie
    Join Date
    October 24th, 2008
    Posts
    3
    Unhappy CJ datafeed and API often out of date?
    I am so frustrated with CJ API and datafeed.

    I first started with CJ API. After lots of efforts and time, I got API working. And then I find that most of prices I am getting from web service API is either out of date or completely wrong. Not at all reliable and slow too!!

    So I went to datafeed assuming it should be all right and that is what all other big affiliates are using it. Bummer! I find same thing there too! Prices and links in datafeed seems to be out of sync for many items in the list!

    What puzzling me is this: I get item price using API or latest datafeed which will NOT match with current price listed on merchant web site. But when I check other well known affiliate web sites (price compare), they have correct price for that item! How they get it correct??? Is there a third way to get affiliate data other than API/datafeed?

    Any idea????

    Thanks for reading...

  2. #2
    .
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Posts
    2,973
    The affiliate networks (CJ, SAS, etc.) only serve up the data that was most recently provided by the merchant. It is the responsibility of the merchant to keep their datafeeds up-to-date, and unfortunately many merchants don't do so. Even when the network reports the last-update date for a datafeed, it's the last date when the merchant made an update -- which might just mean the merchant changed or added a single item, not that everything in the datafeed was validated.

    I certainly believe that networks should assume some responsibility regarding the validity of merchant datafeeds, it is clearly the merchant's responsibility.

    If you're getting bad data from the merchant, you should check to see if the merchant may have other problems (for example, is tracking working?).

  3. #3
    Newbie
    Join Date
    October 24th, 2008
    Posts
    3
    Thanks Mark.

    Yes, that is what I plan to do.

    But still question is how other affiliate (big ones) get the correct price \(matches with merchant's website). Is there a possibility that they parse merchant website?

  4. #4
    .
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Posts
    2,973
    Some merchants do provide versions of their affiliate-product datafeeds "outside" the affiliate networks (sometimes by ftp or http download from a URL at the merchant site, sometimes using other methods). Many merchants also provide "price-comparison" datafeeds separately (for use by Google and specific price-comparison sites); sometimes these can be encoded for use by affiliates, but sometimes they cannot. Some merchants may also provide an API (e.g. Amazon) to obtain current pricing and availability information in real-time (I believe that Amazon's rules require that you not retain API [Web Services] data beyond 24 hours). And of course some price-comparison sites (and others) do "scrape" merchant web sites for current data (but this should never be done without permission, if you wish to maintain your advertising relationship).

    Contact the affiliate manager (or if the affiliate program is managed by the network, contact the merchant directly).

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