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  1. #1
    Newbie
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    May 30th, 2013
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    13
    How do you screen merchants?
    Hi everyone,

    Hope you had a great day today.

    So I have a question for all affiliates...

    When you are looking for a merchant to sign up with, how do you screen them for:

    1. Is it a well run company
    2. Do they have a quality product
    3. What is their customer service like

    I'm about to promote a merchant b/c the topic is very important to me & I thought he was a knowledgeable person within his industry, but he's terrible at customer service, responding to e-mails, can't handle complaints, doesn't apologize, etc.

    I don't have another option to replace him (I don't think) & so I'm wondering how you guys screen prior to investing in the relationship.

    Thanks


    Michelle

  2. #2
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    January 13th, 2006
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    9,578
    Quote Originally Posted by affiliateresearch View Post
    I'm wondering how you guys screen prior to investing in the relationship.
    One way is to sign up with AMs/OPMs that are active on/have some type of presence on ABW.

    It's often by chance.

    I often join an affiliate program by trying to figure out what type of creatives they offer up front. If they offer product picture links and appropriate banners/links and it looks like I have a choice of creatives to work with then I'll sign with the program.
    Also I try to stick with programs on CJ,SAS, & Linkshare. I avoid "in house programs."

    I'm sure other affiliates can offer interesting input.

    This is why affiliates like to be active on this forum, you have a chance to make contacts. Not every affiliate manager is on this forum but it is possible to form some type of alliance.

    Another way to meet people in the industry is to go to trade shows such as Affiliate Summit.
    Last edited by Rhia7; October 23rd, 2013 at 12:46 AM.
    ~Rhia7 -- Remember the 7
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  4. #3
    Affiliate Manager chris9771's Avatar
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    February 27th, 2012
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    Chicago Suburbs
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    Hi Michelle - first, if it were me, I wouldn't work with the person you mentioned, passionate or not about their product. If they cant win you over in the "honeymoon", you can expect the marriage to go even worse once you are working with them. There are ALWAYS additional merchants to promote with professional people working behind the scenes. No merchant exists in a vacuum ;-).

    In my opinion there are many variables to review, and you need to spend some time when you are considering working with them. Things I would look as an affiliate include:

    Is their program write up well done and informative?
    Are they responsive?
    Is a contact person listed, or do they have the generic "affiliates@DOMAIN.com" as their contact email?
    Do they have timely banners/links in place or are they still showing St. Patty Day banners in October?
    Are they forthcoming with their site metrics?
    How is their shopping cart process on their site? Do they make it easy for a customer to complete a purchase quickly so they dont abandon their cart and you lose out on commissions?

    Those are just a few variables you may want to look into. I hope that helps as you get started.

    Good luck!

    Chris
    -MGECOM
    Chris Cooper
    -MGECOM
    [email]socialize@mgecom.com[/email]

  5. #4
    Affiliate Manager CreditFirm's Avatar
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    October 7th, 2013
    Location
    Deerfield, IL USA
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    82
    Quote Originally Posted by chris9771 View Post
    Hi Michelle - first, if it were me, I wouldn't work with the person you mentioned, passionate or not about their product. If they cant win you over in the "honeymoon", you can expect the marriage to go even worse once you are working with them. There are ALWAYS additional merchants to promote with professional people working behind the scenes. No merchant exists in a vacuum ;-).

    In my opinion there are many variables to review, and you need to spend some time when you are considering working with them. Things I would look as an affiliate include:

    Is their program write up well done and informative?
    Are they responsive?
    Is a contact person listed, or do they have the generic "affiliates@DOMAIN.com" as their contact email?
    Do they have timely banners/links in place or are they still showing St. Patty Day banners in October?
    Are they forthcoming with their site metrics?
    How is their shopping cart process on their site? Do they make it easy for a customer to complete a purchase quickly so they dont abandon their cart and you lose out on commissions?

    Those are just a few variables you may want to look into. I hope that helps as you get started.

    Good luck!

    Chris
    -MGECOM
    hmm.... [Looks down at signature and shakes head.]
    Michael Abramsky :usaflag:
    Affiliate Manager for [URL="http://www.creditfirm.net"]CreditFirm.Net[/URL]
    Email: [email]Affiliate@CreditFirm.net[/email] | Phone: 800-750-1416 x 901 | [URL="http://www.creditfirm.net/affiliates"]Affiliate Program Info[/URL]

  6. #5
    Affiliate Manager chris9771's Avatar
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    February 27th, 2012
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    Sorry Mike, no offense. I should have been more clear. I meant that if no contact info/name is given, and ONLY the generic email was listed that is where I would concerned. But if a manager has their name with the "affiliate@" email listed like you do then I, personally, wouldnt be concerned. I wasnt clear there, apologies.
    Chris Cooper
    -MGECOM
    [email]socialize@mgecom.com[/email]

  7. #6
    Affiliate Manager CreditFirm's Avatar
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    October 7th, 2013
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    Deerfield, IL USA
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    None taken Chris. I was being playful, but your point is valid, that's something I probably should address. I don't want affiliates to think that they're sending email into a bottomless pit, I want them to know that they are contacting ME and I will respond to absolutely every email. (Unless it's stupid or spam)

    Thanks for pointing that out, I appreciate it.
    Michael Abramsky :usaflag:
    Affiliate Manager for [URL="http://www.creditfirm.net"]CreditFirm.Net[/URL]
    Email: [email]Affiliate@CreditFirm.net[/email] | Phone: 800-750-1416 x 901 | [URL="http://www.creditfirm.net/affiliates"]Affiliate Program Info[/URL]

  8. #7
    Website Designer
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    June 25th, 2013
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    4
    I really like Chris's suggestions. And I would also advise you to dump your current affiliate. You mentioned you don't have anyone to replace him - I would encourage you to look harder, seek out connections, do some networking. Surely, there has to be a better option!

    Another thing to consider when screening affiliates is chargebacks. A lot of chargebacks happen because of faulty customer service. If you are working with someone who doesn't provide excellent customer service, he/she could encounter more chargebacks. And what will that do to your affiliate earnings?

    Just something to think about!

  9. #8
    ...and a Pirate's heart. Convergence's Avatar
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    June 24th, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by jessica.lee View Post
    I really like Chris's suggestions. And I would also advise you to dump your current affiliate. You mentioned you don't have anyone to replace him - I would encourage you to look harder, seek out connections, do some networking. Surely, there has to be a better option!

    Another thing to consider when screening affiliates is chargebacks. A lot of chargebacks happen because of faulty customer service. If you are working with someone who doesn't provide excellent customer service, he/she could encounter more chargebacks. And what will that do to your affiliate earnings?

    Just something to think about!
    You mean MERCHANT and not affiliate, correct?
    Salty kisses, Sandy toes, and a Pirate's heart...

  10. #9
    Website Designer
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    June 25th, 2013
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    Quote Originally Posted by Convergence View Post
    You mean MERCHANT and not affiliate, correct?
    Yup, yup I do. It's been one of those days. Sorry!

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