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  1. #1
    Affiliate Manager
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    What turns super affiliates away from merchants?
    Hey guys,

    So I'm curious to hear from you super affiliates out there just what it is that makes you shy away from certain affiliate programs? Specifically, what would you list as the top three things that make or break your decision to join a program? Is it EPC? Cookie Duration? Competitor's Commission rates? Accessibility of the AM? Etc...

    I know all of these things matter but I'm interested in just the top 3!
    Mike Hourigan
    Affiliate Manager for [URL="http://www.shoeboxed.com/?utm_source=abestweb&utm_medium=signature%2B&utm_campaign=abestweb"]Shoeboxed.com[/URL]
    [EMAIL="mikeh@team.shoeboxed.com"]Email[/EMAIL]|[URL="http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=131457835&trk=tab_pro"]LinkedIn[/URL]

  2. #2
    ...and a Pirate's heart. Convergence's Avatar
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    Hi Mike,

    What do YOU consider a super affiliate?...
    Salty kisses, Sandy toes, and a Pirate's heart...

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  4. #3
    ABW Veteran Mr. Sal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeHourigan View Post
    Hey guys,

    So I'm curious to hear from you super affiliates out there just what it is that makes you shy away from certain affiliate programs? Specifically, what would you list as the top three things that make or break your decision to join a program? Is it EPC? Cookie Duration? Competitor's Commission rates? Accessibility of the AM? Etc...

    I know all of these things matter but I'm interested in just the top 3!
    First, I don't think that any of those so called super affiliates will post here to reply to your question, I don't remember the last time that someone like E posted here...

    Second, two hours after you posted your question and while you was still logged in here, someone ask you about: "What do YOU consider a super affiliate?... " and you didn't reply, anyway... over 10 hours later and you have disappeared from here...

    Do you really think super affiliates have time to hang around in order to answer your question here?

    Btw, if you really want to ask real super affiliates that question, don't waste your time asking here.

    Just try to contact those that are winning awards on any network out there...

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  6. #4
    notary sojac Herb ԿԬ's Avatar
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    I think we're all pretty super!

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  8. #5
    Affiliate Manager
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    I'm new to the forum and had no idea I wasn't logged out when I left my PC. My apologies. Thanks for the info though Sal, I'll work on getting in touch with these guys directly.
    Mike Hourigan
    Affiliate Manager for [URL="http://www.shoeboxed.com/?utm_source=abestweb&utm_medium=signature%2B&utm_campaign=abestweb"]Shoeboxed.com[/URL]
    [EMAIL="mikeh@team.shoeboxed.com"]Email[/EMAIL]|[URL="http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=131457835&trk=tab_pro"]LinkedIn[/URL]

  9. #6
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    Ya let us know what they say!

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  11. #7
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    What could merchants do that could help
    affiliates grow into Super Affiliates (according to your definition)?
    ~Rhia7 -- Remember the 7
    Twitter me

  12. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeHourigan View Post
    I'll work on getting in touch with these guys directly.
    I think you missed the point.

  13. #9
    ABW Ambassador affninja's Avatar
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    Wow guys, I thought this was a sincere and legitimate question and you come out guns-a-blazin'.

    For me the primary factors are datafeed quality and commission rate.
    Your Ad Here.

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  15. #10
    ABW Ambassador kaizen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by affninja View Post
    Wow guys, I thought this was a sincere and legitimate question and you come out guns-a-blazin'.

    For me the primary factors are datafeed quality and commission rate.
    Don't you think that the original poster would have received more thoughtful responses if he had taken the "super" out of the question?
    We did not change as we grew older; we just became more clearly ourselves.
    ~Lynn Hall

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  17. #11
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaizen View Post
    Don't you think that the original poster would have received more thoughtful responses if he had taken the "super" out of the question?
    Yes.
    ~Rhia7 -- Remember the 7
    Twitter me

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  19. #12
    OPM/Moderator Hectic GHC's Avatar
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    Your definition of a super affiliate is different than my definition of a super affiliate. And it's different than his definition and her definition.

    In a new program, your definition of a super affiliate could be the coupon affiliate that has the most sales. In a long established program, it could be one woman that built a review site in one niche and delivers half a million dollars in sales each year. But if you asked her to sell a second product, she might not have the time to care.

    The point is, build a good converting site, pay a great commission, offer competitive deals, talk to your affiliates and create your own super affiliates.
    Greg Hoffman
    Affiliate Marketing Advocate of the Year 2016; Best OPM/Agency - 2014; Best OPM/Agency, Five Years in a Row - ABestWeb.
    Visit Greg Hoffman Consulting

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  21. #13
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    Super Affiliates, who are these people - Though the term may have started with the right intention, it has acquired a negative meaning for quite some time now.

    Super Affiliates are supposed to be highly successful affiliates making over 10K from affiliate income per month. And there are quite a few of them. So understandably most affiliate managers would want them in their programs.

    But there is a problem, true super affiliates don't advertise themselves. They don't have "Supaa Duppaa Affiliate" tattooed on their foreheads. And as a result create this vacuum. Everyone knows they are there, but no one can find them easily.

    Where there is a vacuum, it eventually gets filled by something.
    And hence come the So-Called-Super-Affiliates. These So-Called-Super-Affiliates aren't that shy though. They have their foreheads and backsides tattooed "Suppa-Duppa-Affilate-Who-Makes-a-Million-Every-Month-Owns-An-Island-Drives-A-Lamborghini-And-SO-CAN-YOU".

    Their claim to super affiliatedom stems from the words SO-CAN-YOU. They will make you a Super Affiliate just like them, if you subscribe to their mailing lists, buy their e-books, sign-up for their mentoring programs and so on...

    These So-Called-Super-Affiliates don't make a dime from true affiliate marketing. They make money, probably thousands if not millions, from selling get-rich-quick schemes. And there are many newbies who think the e-books will make them rich if they fork out the money for an easy path to a private island and a lamborghini.

    Note to New Affiliate Managers - If you are looking for Super Affiliates, you won't find them easily. The So-Called-Super-Affiliates won't be interested in you, since as I said, THEY DON'T MAKE A DIME from affiliate marketing. And small affiliates like me and many others here will not be interested in you either, since you are looking Super affiliates but we are not exactly Super, we are Small.


  22. #14
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    Thanks for the great responses! "Super" affiliate was definitely the wrong term to use in my question. What I consider to be "super" affiliates within my program is undoubtedly different than what other affiliate managers and affiliates do and I shouldn't have been so vague. In all honesty, a super affiliate to me is someone who is easy to work with and passionate about helping us to promote our service. Of course conversions matter but as an AM I find it much more beneficial in the long run to work with affiliates who are excited about our niche and our service.

    It seems like the top responses for my original question include: commission rate, data feed quality, how well our site converts, and the competitive deals we offer.


    Anyone have anything else they would like to share?
    Mike Hourigan
    Affiliate Manager for [URL="http://www.shoeboxed.com/?utm_source=abestweb&utm_medium=signature%2B&utm_campaign=abestweb"]Shoeboxed.com[/URL]
    [EMAIL="mikeh@team.shoeboxed.com"]Email[/EMAIL]|[URL="http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=131457835&trk=tab_pro"]LinkedIn[/URL]

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  24. #15
    ABW Ambassador superCool's Avatar
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    a few more...
    - reversal rate
    - does the program go offline frequently / ever?
    - leaks
    - amateurish banners
    - outdated deals and promotions
    - barriers to buy (sign up, cumbersome cart, etc.)

    regarding feed quality
    - include UPC, MFG Id, Sku
    - good accurate categories / consistent and do not change
    - provide good image(s) - not too small, not too large, preferably thumb and normal
    - good descriptions that have not been stripped of punctuation
    - no invalid characters or html
    - up to date

    Treat your affiliates like partners - not competitors


  25. #16
    OPM/Moderator Hectic GHC's Avatar
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    Go back and listen to the older versions of my podcast, Affiliate Juice. The purpose was to dissect programs form the vantage point of the affiliates. Look at your program the same way and compare it to your competitors.
    Greg Hoffman
    Affiliate Marketing Advocate of the Year 2016; Best OPM/Agency - 2014; Best OPM/Agency, Five Years in a Row - ABestWeb.
    Visit Greg Hoffman Consulting

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  27. #17
    ABW Ambassador kaizen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeHourigan View Post
    I know all of these things matter but I'm interested in just the top 3!
    You're going to find that the top three will vary depending on the type of affiliate you're asking. A niche, content affiliate's needs are different from an affiliate who has a price comparison site and a couponer's...

    I wouldn't be simply interested in the top three... I would be looking at all of the suggestions and trying to excel in all areas of my program. I would be asking for ways to do better in each aspect.
    We did not change as we grew older; we just became more clearly ourselves.
    ~Lynn Hall

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  29. #18
    OPM/Moderator Hectic GHC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaizen View Post
    You're going to find that the top three will vary depending on the type of affiliate you're asking. A niche, content affiliate's needs are different from an affiliate who has a price comparison site and a couponer's...

    I wouldn't be simply interested in the top three... I would be looking at all of the suggestions and trying to excel in all areas of my program. I would be asking for ways to do better in each aspect.
    You need to focus on the top 25.
    Greg Hoffman
    Affiliate Marketing Advocate of the Year 2016; Best OPM/Agency - 2014; Best OPM/Agency, Five Years in a Row - ABestWeb.
    Visit Greg Hoffman Consulting

  30. #19
    ABW Veteran Mr. Sal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sam_park View Post
    Super Affiliates, who are these people - Though the term may have started with the right intention, it has acquired a negative meaning for quite some time now.
    I agree with your post, Sam.

    But, I also stand by my reply on post #3

    if you really want to ask real super affiliates that question, don't waste your time asking here.

    Just try to contact those that are winning awards on any network out there...
    Because whether we like it or not, those winning awards and appearing on the front page of many networks out there, are called super affiliates by those networks...

    Now, whether some of those super affiliates winning awards on any networks are parasites or real affiliates, that's another thing.

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  32. #20
    OPM/Moderator Hectic GHC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Sal View Post
    Now, whether some of those super affiliates winning awards on any networks are parasites or real affiliates, that's another thing.
    There is no question. They are parasites that make the networks rich.
    Greg Hoffman
    Affiliate Marketing Advocate of the Year 2016; Best OPM/Agency - 2014; Best OPM/Agency, Five Years in a Row - ABestWeb.
    Visit Greg Hoffman Consulting


  33. #21
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    I thought of this question while updating my site over the weekend, and would take a high quality datafeed over a higher commission rate.

    If the feed is clean, and not full of sold-out products, I can keep your information fresh on MY site - I don't want to send readers to a "not found" or "sold out" page, which produces low conversion. A properly maintained datafeed also means the product links in the various network interfaces will be up to date as well.

    Better yet, if you keep me informed of upcoming changes in your feed, you will get better placement over the other guy! Make it easy for me to sell, and I will sell more, regardless of commission rate.

    This weekend, I wasted many hours of valuable time on feeds that had changed, and attempting to harmonize a mess of categories. All of that could have been avoided if the merchants cared about their affiliates. We are real people who are doing real work - we don't just "flip a switch" to promote a store.

    Just my two cents worth..


  34. #22
    Affiliate Manager
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    Quote Originally Posted by teezone View Post
    Better yet, if you keep me informed of upcoming changes in your feed, you will get better placement over the other guy! Make it easy for me to sell, and I will sell more, regardless of commission rate.
    This has been a main priority of mine over the past few months and affiliates really do appreciate the updates. When I first started as an AM people would tell me that affiliates only care about money and that commissions should be my most important emphasis. This couldn't be any further from the truth.
    Mike Hourigan
    Affiliate Manager for [URL="http://www.shoeboxed.com/?utm_source=abestweb&utm_medium=signature%2B&utm_campaign=abestweb"]Shoeboxed.com[/URL]
    [EMAIL="mikeh@team.shoeboxed.com"]Email[/EMAIL]|[URL="http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=131457835&trk=tab_pro"]LinkedIn[/URL]

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  36. #23
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    Because whether we like it or not, those winning awards and appearing on the front page of many networks out there, are called super affiliates by those networks...
    I have never had an affiliate introduce themselves as Super Affiliates. Yes that is something the networks and marketers created to entice merchants to launch their programs there. CJ used CJP (CJ Producer) based on volume of commissions. Many of those don't even read emails from affiliate managers because they don't relate to what they sell and are considered spam.

    Mike is new to this and I don't believe meant to use a term that is offensive to affiliates. To me a Super Affiliate is one that is making enough money to do what they want. Some travel, some pay their way to conferences, some have two homes. Making $10k/month could classify you as a super affiliate unless you are spending half of that a month on paid search. $500 per month may be enough for an affiliate outside of the US to have a great life.

    We killed the messenger!

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  38. #24
    Super Dawg Member Phil Kaufman aka AffiliateHound's Avatar
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    Other than Greg's mentioning "competitive deals", no mention of the customer experience has been raised. Maybe it's just me, but I think that is important.

    First and foremost, is regular pricing. Deals are nice, but what would the typical customer pay for your product(s) in comparison with your competitors? I see many merchant sites that look real good from the affiliate perspective, but when I compare prices, they charge significantly more than their competitors for often the very same products. Why should a site visitor pay more to you when X, Y, and Z merchants charge less? The answer is, they WON'T. Similarly, I see merchant sites that offer low prices on their products but make up for it with exorbitant shipping rates.

    Also, do you require new customers to sign up and log in to make a purchase, or as with some sites now-a-days, to even view your products and prices? I will not join a merchant program that is set up that way.

    Something else that is now extremely important to me, and I'm sure for a growing percentage of affiliates, is whether or not you are on Popshops, GoldenCan and/or SellFire, and if so, are ALL your products in their feed and adequately organized, categorized and kept current?
    Since June 10, 2012 a vegan aarf but still writing the Hound Dawg Sports Blog
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  40. #25
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    I thought of this question while updating my site over the weekend, and would take a high quality datafeed over a higher commission rate.
    As an affiliate manager I have not found a tool to verify stock and pricing on datafeeds. Affiliate have been invaluable in alerting when something is not correct. We rely in the merchant to keep things up-to-date but that is not always the case. I also share criticisms from affiliates about the lack of detail in datafeeds. Some merchants don't want to spend the tech time to add decent descriptions, thumbnails, SKUs. Its not until they start using them for shopping comparison feeds that they realize how lame their feed has been. Or they get a complaint of an "out of stock" item for price increase!

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