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  1. #1
    Affiliate Manager maxwellgarner's Avatar
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    I would like to see an Affiliate Program Directory At ABW
    There is another site that has both a forum and a directory which I receive quite a bit of traffic from, but I know that their forum doesn't receive nearly as much traffic as the ABW Forum. Any thoughts on ABW starting a directory? I know that I would definitely pay monthly for a listing in that directory...
    Affiliate marketing is not just a way to make money, it's a way of life.
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  2. #2
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    There is already a directory listing on ABW.

    Have you ever looked at the home page?

  3. #3
    Affiliate Manager maxwellgarner's Avatar
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    I'm sorry, but I just don't see it. I do see a way for to "white-label" a forum for my affiliate program, but that wasn't what I was talking about. If I missed the directory somewhere, feel free to post the link, it would be much appreciated.
    Affiliate marketing is not just a way to make money, it's a way of life.
    Maxwell Garner | Owner | [URL="http://creditcardaffiliateservices.com"]CreditCardAffiliateServices.com[/URL] | Phone - 407-504-5944

  4. #4
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    What kind of directory are you looking for? A directory of what?

  5. #5
    Affiliate Manager maxwellgarner's Avatar
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    Well, like a directory directory. There are already quite a few affiliate program directories, but here is a site that has both a forum and a directory: http://www.associateprograms.com

    /forums for forums and /directory for directory
    Affiliate marketing is not just a way to make money, it's a way of life.
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  6. #6
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    You mean a directory of affiliate programs?

    ABW does not have one of those.

  7. #7
    Affiliate Manager maxwellgarner's Avatar
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    Right, I was saying that I would like to see one and that I would even pay to have my program listed there.
    Affiliate marketing is not just a way to make money, it's a way of life.
    Maxwell Garner | Owner | [URL="http://creditcardaffiliateservices.com"]CreditCardAffiliateServices.com[/URL] | Phone - 407-504-5944

  8. #8
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    Pretty much the only people that like affiliate program directories are the affiliate managers. Affiliates pretty much don't use them.
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  9. #9
    The "other" left wing davidh's Avatar
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    The affiliate networks are directories unto themselves. And it only takes two seconds to Google "[keyword] affiliate program"

    Most existing affiliate directories are rife with long-defunct programs.

    The end result is that most affiliates don't like and don't use affiliate directories.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by maxwellgarner View Post
    Right, I was saying that I would like to see one and that I would even pay to have my program listed there.
    That is what the forums for programs are for They form the ABW "Affiliate Program Directory".

    Affiliates pay attention to the merchants and managers that have forums here, they are much more informative and covert better than a directory listing anywhere else.
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  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador kse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by loxly View Post
    Pretty much the only people that like affiliate program directories are the affiliate managers. Affiliates pretty much don't use them.
    I think his idea is not a bad one at all, I would not have a problem with a directory of affiliate programs here. However I would want a rating system included so ABW members would give the listed affiliate program a rating and feedback on the program.
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  12. #12
    Super Dawg Member Phil Kaufman aka AffiliateHound's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kse View Post
    I think his idea is not a bad one at all, I would not have a problem with a directory of affiliate programs here. However I would want a rating system included so ABW members would give the listed affiliate program a rating and feedback on the program.
    There was along discussion of an affiliate program rating system on a network basis a few months ago. As I recall, the consensus seemed to be that network reps, merchants, affiliate managers and OPMs were all against it, and it was only supported by affiliates.

    Maybe it could work here with no network involvement.

    Quote Originally Posted by loxly View Post
    Pretty much the only people that like affiliate program directories are the affiliate managers. Affiliates pretty much don't use them.
    All of the above criticisms of affiliate directories are valid, and are probably why there has never been one that was successful. Run correctly, consistently updated, with no agenda, and not having to make an independent profit to stay alive could translate to a useful tool, especially the ratings and feedback part.

    Having it all in one place would make it easier to access then having to look through dozens of sub-forums, and hundreds of threads, especially for people wanting to troll through program synopses. The programs that have OPM and merchant forums here could have links back to their sections, for more info., questions, etc.
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  13. #13
    Affiliate Manager maxwellgarner's Avatar
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    There was along discussion of an affiliate program rating system on a network basis a few months ago. As I recall, the consensus seemed to be that network reps, merchants, affiliate managers and OPMs were all against it, and it was only supported by affiliates.
    Maybe that should tell you something about the programs...

    Most existing affiliate directories are rife with long-defunct programs.
    With the amount of moderation that takes place in the forum, I'm sure it wouldn't be much of an added work load for a directory, plus, I think it would be profitable for ABW.

    All of the above criticisms of affiliate directories are valid, and are probably why there has never been one that was successful. Run correctly, consistently updated, with no agenda, and not having to make an independent profit to stay alive could translate to a useful tool, especially the ratings and feedback part.

    Having it all in one place would make it easier to access then having to look through dozens of sub-forums, and hundreds of threads, especially for people wanting to troll through program synopses. The programs that have OPM and merchant forums here could have links back to their sections, for more info., questions, etc.
    I like the way you think!
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by maxwellgarner View Post
    With the amount of moderation that takes place in the forum, I'm sure it wouldn't be much of an added work load for a directory
    I'm not sure what this comment means or has to do with a directory. You do know that moderators here are volunteers right?
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  15. #15
    Affiliate Manager maxwellgarner's Avatar
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    Well, like forums, directories need "editors" or "moderators." If you look at the DMOZ (the largest web directory on the face of the planet), it's comprised of volunteers as well.
    Affiliate marketing is not just a way to make money, it's a way of life.
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  16. #16
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    Won't ever work. DMOZ can't even keep it together. There is a reason why nobody really uses affiliate directories, they're pretty much worthless because they're never kept up to date.

    Other reasons -

    As far as volunteers, you're going to have to pay somebody to manage this and this type of thing doesn't go well with affiliate marketing, rating merchants and such. When you find a hill of gold, you don't run and tell the world about it, you mine it. I'm not about to 5 star my best merchants for my competitors. There are already plenty of stats within the networks to give you a starting idea and actually testing yourself will give you the real.

    And what David posted already - "The affiliate networks are directories unto themselves".

    There are only a handful of major traditional affiliate networks. Pop open a few windows, login, it's organized, with some stats. And it'll be better than what we can have here, since it won't discriminate against some merchants.

  17. #17
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I like the idea. I think a directory could work right if done properly.

    I know that the Dev team at iNET is pretty backlogged, but I'll see if they can put it on the schedule as a future project.
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  18. #18
    Affiliate Manager maxwellgarner's Avatar
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    Awesome, can't wait!
    Affiliate marketing is not just a way to make money, it's a way of life.
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  19. #19
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    What would affiliates want to see in it?

    Ability to rate merchants?

    What networks they're on? Base commission rates and return days?

    AM contact info, if known?

    If they have a forum here?
    Michael Coley
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  20. #20
    Outsourced Program Manager Sarah Bundy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kse View Post
    I think his idea is not a bad one at all, I would not have a problem with a directory of affiliate programs here. However I would want a rating system included so ABW members would give the listed affiliate program a rating and feedback on the program.
    I think this would actually because a useful tool for affiliates. Almost like a review / ratings program.

    However there are two things to caution:

    1. you'll get a lot of extremes leaving the comments: either really happy or really unhappy and the rating system will likely be skewed.
    2. Affiliates who do post comments supporting a program and making it well known and reputable (which would be great to affiliate managers and opms in recruiting - unless they start getting a lot of low quality affiliates signing up) would only cause more competition for good affiliates who find a really good program.

    But like most things, there are pros and cons to both. I think it would be interesting to have, and something I would like to see maybe as:

    Program Name | Website URL and/or Affiliate Sign up Page | Affiliate Manager / OPM | Commission | Cookies | Network | Affiliate Reviews

    However it would be up to the owners or program managers to keep the information current and affiliates would need to know that the comments are likely one of two extremes, and there are a lot of people somewhere in the middle. Unless of course the reviews are unanimous

  21. #21
    Super Dawg Member Phil Kaufman aka AffiliateHound's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trust View Post
    When you find a hill of gold, you don't run and tell the world about it, you mine it. I'm not about to 5 star my best merchants for my competitors.
    No looking for a nest of secrets, rather basic info - like the stuff in the recent Ticketmaster thread about then axing most of their affiliates, and an old thread about how Macy's has non-commissioned several product brands. Inside tips like that, and maybe some kind of a rating system based on quick pay v extending transactions, proper explanations when transactions are reversed, responsiveness of ams, etc.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trust View Post
    There are already plenty of stats within the networks to give you a starting idea and actually testing yourself will give you the real.
    Not nearly enough to get a true picture.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trust View Post
    And what David posted already - "The affiliate networks are directories unto themselves".

    There are only a handful of major traditional affiliate networks. Pop open a few windows, login, it's organized, with some stats. And it'll be better than what we can have here, since it won't discriminate against some merchants.
    Can't agree - some networks are a mess in that regard. It's impossible trying to go through GAN merchants to find what your looking for, and to get enough info about them, and even SAS has merchant categories that are too broad - makes searching for new merchants much longer and more of an ordeal that it has to be.

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelColey View Post
    I like the idea. I think a directory could work right if done properly.

    I know that the Dev team at iNET is pretty backlogged, but I'll see if they can put it on the schedule as a future project.
    Excellent!
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by AffiliateHound View Post
    No looking for a nest of secrets, rather basic info - like the stuff in the recent Ticketmaster thread about then axing most of their affiliates, and an old thread about how Macy's has non-commissioned several product brands. Inside tips like that, and maybe some kind of a rating system based on quick pay v extending transactions, proper explanations when transactions are reversed, responsiveness of ams, etc.
    Not nearly enough to get a true picture.
    Can't agree - some networks are a mess in that regard. It's impossible trying to go through GAN merchants to find what your looking for, and to get enough info about them, and even SAS has merchant categories that are too broad - makes searching for new merchants much longer and more of an ordeal that it has to be.

    Excellent!
    Who exactly do you think is going to put this all together and keep it up to date? It's an impossible task, just on the major networks, has to be over 7,000 programs. There is reason these things have failed over the years. It's a simple remembering of the history of these kinds of things. I already know how this is going to turn out.

    As far as this:
    "I know that the Dev team at iNET is pretty backlogged, but I'll see if they can put it on the schedule as a future project."

    I actually had somebody ask me about this a couple of weeks ago - http://www.abestweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=130582

    There is still a thread, many things that still haven't been taken care of, minor things. This is major, so are we looking at 2012, 2013?

    I'll stay out of it, it'll be interesting to watch.

    I was looking at some old threads here - http://www.abestweb.com/forums/searc...archid=3100597

    I think sometimes people fall in love with an idea but don't think it all the way thru and understand exactly how much work something like this actually is. I'm just thinking of all the emails I get about commission changes, cookie changes etc. You want to do something like this, you need to keep it up to date and accurate. This isn't some small task, set it up and forget about it.

    If it was just the merchants here at ABW, that's something that might have a chance.
    Last edited by Trust; July 23rd, 2010 at 12:56 AM.

  23. #23
    ABW Ambassador kaizen's Avatar
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    It seems a monumental task... but hey, if someone has the time to build and maintain it, then why not?

    I wouldn't have a ratings system though, as it would be too easy to game it.

  24. #24
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    There will definitely need to be a way to keep AM/OPM information updated. As much as we all like stability, the only thing constant in this business is change.

    Maybe a directory here at ABW will be different, but when affiliates are polled at how they find affiliate programs, directories aren't where they look.
    Last edited by loxly; July 23rd, 2010 at 12:57 AM.
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  25. #25
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    We'll have to work out the details, but a lot of it could be automated (pulling lists of merchants and stats from networks). Ratings and reviews would be user-generated. Some details could be user-editable. Ratings could be restricted to active members if we have a problem with abuse (either positive vote stuffing by merchants or negative vote stuffing of competitors). Lots of things we could do that would provide value without taking manual work by moderators/volunteers.
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