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  1. #1
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    A Letter To GAN Merchants
    If you are a merchant who has signed up with the Google Affiliate Network or are considering signing up, it is important that you understand that GAN will soon (Oct. 09) be shutting out countless successful affiliates due to a new payment structure involving AdSense.

    It would be in your best interest to start a second program with another network in order for you to maximize your exposure to some of the top, most experienced and successful, long term, well-established affiliates looking to do business with you, but unable to because of GANs new payment structure.

    As you can see here -- these merchants are going to have an advantage because of being in two or more networks. It's all about choices, exposure and making the most money you can from your business.

    Unfortunately, unlike any other major network out there, this new setup is unique to GAN because it only benefits GAN. It has nothing to do with helping you attract great affiliates and it is nothing any other network would even consider doing because of the negative impact it would have on their merchants growth and success.

    Because Google has many other major areas where it earns money, it makes sense that putting you - the merchant - second to their own needs would make sense.

    It is as if GAN is a backseat project, funded by merchants and affiliates, which is only being developed to help feed the massive database of information Google collects.

    Most of the other networks, although they may have other business interests, keep what is best for the merchant as a number one priority. I suppose GAN can afford not to take this same stand.

    If you want more details, there are many posts which cover exactly what GAN is doing and why -- none of which have anything to do with the affiliate business or your site increasing sales, in fact, the outcome will have the opposite effect.

    Currently there are hundreds of affiliates looking for Google merchants who have a second program elsewhere. Don't be left behind. The holiday season is right around the corner, if not already here.

    GAN is willing to let many of your established good affiliates send business elsewhere.... are you?

    Thank you.
    Last edited by leeann; September 20th, 2009 at 11:58 AM.
    leeann


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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by leeann
    Because Google has many other major areas where it earns money, it makes sense that putting you - the merchant - second to their own needs would make sense.
    The above quote pretty much sums up Google's main interest - information gathering.
    90% of Google's income come from Adwords. All other Google properties/free tools/giveaways (Gmail, Google analytics, Google Webmaster tools, Google Toolbar, iGoogle, GAN, Google Voice and others) are tools Google use to gather more info to fine tune and expand Adwords. Google has no incentive to develop GAN as a better affiliate network. Even if GAN makes no money, the info that can be gathered from GAN from its affiliates is of great value to Google Adwords.

    It may be me, but I am getting increasingly wary of using all those Google free tools.

    I am cutting down on Gmail, all business related emails are now being moved to my business email account.

    I am moving from Google Analytics to PiWik, a free open source hosted analytics. My major sites are already on Piwik on my server.

    I have removed Google toolbar from firefox.

    I still use Webmaster tools.

    I am using GAN merchants only if they are not on other networks.

    Google collects so much info from so many sources, if its not an evil company yet, it may someday become one very easily with a change in management, or policy.
    Last edited by sam_park; September 20th, 2009 at 12:29 PM.

  3. #3
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    >>sums up Google's main interest - information gathering.

    Matt Cutts held Top Secret clearance while working for the NSA...

  4. #4
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sam_park
    Even if GAN makes no money, the info that can be gathered from GAN from its affiliates is of great value for Google Adwords.
    Exactly. Not only will it collect the information, but the merchants and affiliates financially support it.
    leeann


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  5. #5
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    Leeann, while I admire your passion and dedication, I don't understand the basis for your concerns.

    Quote Originally Posted by leeann
    It would be in your best interest to start a second program with another network in order for you to maximize your exposure to some of the top, most experienced and successful, long term, well-established affiliates looking to do business with you, but unable to because of GANs new payment structure.
    Doesn't running dual programs create additional headaches for the merchants? Aren't you asking them to support your cause and create more work for themselves? ... How to avoid pay affiliate twice with the same one transaction??

    Quote Originally Posted by leeann
    It is as if GAN is a backseat project, funded by merchants and affiliates, which is only being developed to help feed the massive database of information Google collects.
    I don't understand this at all. You make it sound like Google collects data for sinister purposes. Google is in the business of providing information. Of course, it is going to collect data. It's what they do with that data that matters. If they are using it to analyze trends to provide better services to its clients, what's wrong with that? What do you think they are doing with the data that is going to adversely affect merchants and affiliates?

    -----

    I'm having a difficult time finding a reason to support this campaign against Google. When the announcement of the change in payment came out, it wasn't a problem for me personally. I have an Adsense account, which is profitable for me. I followed the instructions, and my accounts were merged successfully.

    I've been kicking myself for not implementing it sooner. Until this year I only displayed the Adsense Ads on my pages for products no longer available for sale at retail sites.

    Perhaps it's because of the way my site is set up. While I suspect most affiliates promote items that are currently manufactured and available for sale at retail sites, I take it a step further. Yes, I promote current products, but a large portion of my site is dedicated to discontinued products.

    When a product is discontinued, instead of deleting the page at my site, I move it to the discontinued section and provide the eBay listings. But, sometimes eBay doesn't have any listings ... so over the last year, I've gone through all the pages and added an Adsense link to search for the product on the Internet in additional to eBay. I also use the Adsense search box at the bottom of all my pages.

    By making these changes in the structure of my pages, I've gone from earning $10 to $300 per month with Adsense.

    I always had a problem with the way payments were reported when the network was owned by Performics. Several years ago my computer crashed, and I lost a lot of data, including several months of the emails I had received breaking down payments. In order to do my bookkeeping for that year, I had to write to Performics and ask them to resend the emails so I could figure out what merchants the payments were for, which they did. They sent me an email with a note that they had decided not to charge me for the service. That was Performics.

    When I received notice from GAN that they were changing the payment method, I was relieved that finally the payment breakdowns would be available online. Once they fix my account where I can see the payments online, I won't have anything left to complain about for now.

  6. #6
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    Hard to back promoting merchants to be in two programs. If a merchant is is two programs, I am hesitant to sign up.

  7. #7
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracy
    Leeann, while I admire your passion and dedication, I don't understand the basis for your concerns.
    You don't understand or support this because you can continue doing business as usual apparently. This is not about people like you. This is about affiliates that are being removed from the program for no other reason but so Google can streamline (so say they say) their payments.

    They are closing GAN accounts for any affiliate who does not have or can not get an Adsense account. That is not your situation. It is the situation of hundreds of other affiliates.

    This removes sales from merchants. But I guess for those affiliates it doesn't hurt, having two programs could seem like a bad thing. For those it does hurt, it's the only way to continue doing business w/ merchants signed up with GAN.

    In the meantime, I would tread very carefully w/ your new Adsense account. As you know you can be removed for any reason. If you are, you will not be able to be an affiliate w/ GAN any longer.
    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.

  8. #8
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chetf
    Hard to back promoting merchants to be in two programs. If a merchant is is two programs, I am hesitant to sign up.
    GAN has made it impossible to do it any other way. It would allow the countless affiliates being removed from the GAN program for non-affiliate related reasons to continue to do business with GAN merchants. There are merchants that may not be ready to close GAN accounts and make a complete move to another network esp. this time of the year.

    GAN did not pick this time of the year to implement all of this for no reason.

    Besides, it is up to the affiliate to choose which network they want to sign up with if a merchant is in two networks.
    Last edited by leeann; September 20th, 2009 at 08:02 PM.
    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.

  9. #9
    Half a Bubble Off Plumb RemodelingGuy's Avatar
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    I hate to say that you are beating a dead horse here leeann, but you have obviously given up on GAN, decided to trash them and have never once that I have seen, taken into consideration, those of us that are just fine with the transition.

    You've created more negative threads here and made it your personal mission to trash something that tons of us depend on to make a profit.

    I know that I am the only one willing to take a beating from my fellow ABWers who want to treat you and your campagn with kid gloves, but isn't this crap getting OLD?

    Haiko's given you your own highlighted threads to post your displeasures and rant on about the evils of Google.

    Move On Already .......

    The negativity gets under my skin and your responses sound like a grand conspiracy theory that is only because you and a few ( I say few, because I can't count ten people in all of your threads that are affected, and 1000's who choose not to respond, because change and life goes on )

    Loxly can ban me for this if she feels she has to, but I think that as your Google ( GAN ) days are over soon, you should let those of us that are making a great living with them move forward without your hateful postings about them, because they will not take you back.

    Poop Happens ..

    I know I'm going to regret posting this, but ......... I'm going to hit the Submit Reply button anyway.

    I hope things work out for you leeann.

    Jimmy McDonald - Your Local Hard Working RemodelingGuy ( & SprinklerGuy - & GarageGuy )
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  10. #10
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    I am not affected by the GAN move and I am not worried about GAN per se. I am worried about Google as a whole and all the info it has about me.

    Some of the tools I use or used to use

    Gmail - Google knows who you communicate with and what.
    Analytics - Google knows which sites you own and where your visitors come
    from, how long they stay.
    Google Webmaster Tools - Google knows which sites you own.
    AdWords - Google knows your business model, a part of your business expense.
    AdWords with Analytics - Goolge knows your conversion, cost of conversion, and what sells.
    Google Voice - Google know who calls you.
    GAN - Google gets a more indepth view of your affiliate marketing efforts.
    Google Docs - If you store your business docs, then Google knows about them.

    All these information directly relates to your income and Google knows about it. I am not saying that Google uses this information against you. But I am sure Google uses this info to help Adwords generate more money. So all these free productivity tools that Google is giving away for free do have a cost, that's your data. If these tools weren't helping Adwords make more money, they won't be free. Free after all has a cost, and I am afraid it may prove too costly to us.

  11. #11
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    Everyone has their own opinions, but telling Leeann to take hers elsewhere is unacceptable.

    Remodeling Guy, it isn't your place to tell someone to shut up.
    Last edited by loxly; September 20th, 2009 at 08:44 PM. Reason: spelling correction
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  12. #12
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by loxly
    Everyone has their own opinions, but telling Leeann to take hers elsewhere is unacceptable.

    Remodeling Guy, it isn't your place to tell someone to shut up.
    Thanks for coming to my defense. People really do not have read my posts if it bothers them

    I don't read his posts Loxly, so he can't insult me. I just find it odd that he continues to read or posts anything about the affiliate business, since he is not an affiliate, but then tells the affiliates to shut up, if that's the case.

    But as far as he goes -- he has nothing to say that I am interested in reading.
    leeann


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  13. #13
    Half a Bubble Off Plumb RemodelingGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by leeann
    I just find it odd that he continues to read or posts anything about the affiliate business, since he is not an affiliate, but then tells the affiliates to shut up, if that's the case.
    Not an affiliate?

    Are you on something?

    My sites are nothing but affiliate driven.

    I've just chosen NOT to use GAN and the others because I have built my relationships with the manufacturers and suppliers themselves.

    If someone doesn't agree with you, your response is to insult them.

    Much love leeann.

    I don't agree with your hatred, and your attempts to spread that hatred, but do as you will.

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  14. #14
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    By the way...this is a letter to merchants. I was hoping it might stimulate merchants to take a look at this situation and help those affiliates being locked out of GAN. I was hoping it would get into the search engines and attract merchants who are unaware of what is going on. I don't expect many to post. I just want to make sure they are aware that they can help salvage sales that will be lost by GANs poor decision.

    I am not trying to advocate that GAN merchants drop their programs with GAN. I am suggesting they look at going with an additional network as a way to open their programs to the countless affiliates that can no longer do business with GAN.
    Last edited by leeann; September 20th, 2009 at 09:39 PM.
    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.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by RemodelingGuy

    I feel STRONGLY about this issue...

    Still say GAN screwed up, as I have in EVERY post on the issue, but the Google bashing just stinks to high heaven and I am voicing an opposing position to it.
    Agree to disagree and then go start threads of your own. Leeann has more support than you are aware of because people don't want to "go public". Your defense of Google isn't helping the situation.

    I don't threaten bans lightly. If I did it's because you came to close to crossing a line. You are close to that line again, by taking it personal against Leeann. If you are done with the subject, don't read about it... your opinion has been registered and acknowledged.

    Leeann and others in her position have a legitimate complaint and *this* thread was addressed to the merchants, who may *not even know this is an issue*. It wasn't *negative* it was *informative* and offered merchants a *solution*. It isn't the right solution for everyone, but it was offered to raise awareness another notch.
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  16. #16
    Yup, Sure ... now let me check ... Cagles Mill's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by leeann
    I am not trying to advocate that GAN merchants drop their programs with GAN. I am suggesting they look at going with an additional network as a way to open their programs to the countless affiliates that can no longer do business with GAN.
    I am! GAN was already the worst of the most popular affiliate networks and now Google is making it only worse. The only reason for a merchant to want to stay in GAN rather than go elsewhere is so they can postpone payments for many months and/or to sign up with the major parasites.

    Personally, I've never trusted GAN merchants. Reputable merchants worth working with would go to a different network. Even LinkShare is better and that should be taken as a major insult to GAN.
    Rick M.
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  17. #17
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    You make a good point, Rick.
    leeann


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  18. #18
    ABW Ambassador delsol's Avatar
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    I have not had the time to read much about this issue. But in all fairness, it does not take a rocket scientist to see the present and future dangers of a company being so "monopolistic". I've encountered many instances of G behaving arbitrarily, un-communicatively and un-fairly (and even illogically)... all traits of a burgeoning monopoly. That behavior will just grow till people react. At which time (might already be in the past) reaction might be moot, if the monopoly is too well established.

    I have great compassion for what leeann and many others are experiencing. She is helping all of us by doing what she is doing. I wish you/her the best of luck.

    Disclaimer: As I always say, most of the employees of Google are very "good" people that are just trying to better their lives. I have the highest regards for most of them, especially the one's that will read this ;-)

  19. #19
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by delsol
    Disclaimer: As I always say, most of the employees of Google are very "good" people that are just trying to better their lives. I have the highest regards for most of them, especially the one's that will read this ;-)
    I would imagine Google employees are mostly like employees all over -- just trying to do the job they have been hired to do. It isn't the employees I have complaint with. In fact, I didn't even have a complaint with GAN. My only complaint is ...well.. you all know what it is.....

    And thanks for the note of support, delsol. It's really appreciated by all of us - onepercenters.
    leeann


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  20. #20
    Full Member lintlin's Avatar
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    I'm a Canadian (100% British roots), but I live in Germany and my husband is German. I don't think it is appropriate to compare the Nazi regime to Google. The "good people of Germany" is also out of line. There actually were good people in Germany at that time that tried helping. There were very many more who looked away, leaving a number of bad people to commit heinous crimes.

    I know how you meant your comments, and I don't mean to offend you. Just having been in Germany for 12 years I have become sensitized to the issue. The Germans today are still paying for the crimes of two generations passed. It's careless remarks like this that keep many people from being able to move on.

    Sorry to get on a soapbox, just needed to get that out.

  21. #21
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lintlin
    I don't think it is appropriate to compare the Nazi regime to Google.
    I totally agree.
    leeann


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