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  1. #1
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    Anybody doin any better with their program, since the big move?

  2. #2
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    Nope - can't get any of the worldstock product links to work.

    That Alpaca blanket they have available is a major deal - no where on the planet are you going to find a 100% Alpaca blanket for less than $150. The cost a OS is just $90.

    They got some good buys but I am not to thrilled about doing any good since they are on Snare.

    We all could have done some serious business if they hadn't taken stupid pills and joined Snare. I wish they went to CJ.

  3. #3
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    The LS "advanced product linking" screen allows you to code inks to any product page assuming LS can track the resulting sales off on their individual product generated links. We now know individual product links do not record sales under the reports at BeFree. They might get credited to the general sales reports but cannot be tracked the a prooduct link clickthrough.

    I have to transistion over 600 links to Overstock from BeFree to LS so It's a major pain. All activity reporting at BeFree is disabled for them ..strange..but their new affiliate manger Shawn assures me sales still track there til the 22nd. Haven't seen a sale show up at LS yet but I only sent them 268 clicks. Maybe they batch report sales there and haven't sent through orders.

    Major problem for ABW members is that LS requires you reach the minimum before they even consider invoicing merchants for payments. So after months of work and traffic most will only show " payment deferred -see merchant contract for details". Hate that message. Regular checks take some time to achieve when there is no consolidation of merchants. This is an absolute must for LS to implement or they face the fate of BeFree where the merchants desires for non-disclosure rule the roost.

    [ 03-15-2002: Message edited by: EcomCity.com ]

    [ 03-16-2002: Message edited by: EcomCity.com ]

  4. #4
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    Update -
    First sale today Overstock at linkshare.
    After 72 hits, even know what was sold,this could be good!
    Just makes me want to put up a bunch of links.

    I know, just be patient.

  5. #5
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    Over the weekend Overstock launched Dynamic Rich Media w/ LinkShare, which allows you to place top sellers in each of Overstock's departments on your site. There are 4 different formats for the links including text, and 3 different grephical formats. I hope to see high conversions on these types of links.

    Let me know if you have any questions, or if there is anything in particular I can do to help out.

    Thanks,

    Shawn

  6. #6
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Shawn;
    You need to explain to all us loyal OverStock Affiliates what happened to the reports and stats at BeFree. For over 2 weeks you or they pulled all reporting functions off line. Your program was marked "active" til yesterday and used to at least display under the quick stats report. During the transistion to all Linkshare creatives your company benefits by traffic and sales from both networks. Problem is your getting many more combined hits from folks like me and I see no results from the increased traffic. For over 10 months after you were alerted to problems tracking sales back to Reporting.net you were able to convert 1 in every 100 clicks from EcomCity into a sale.

    Since January you haven't been able to convert 1 in 500 clicks at BeFree and 1 in 400 at Linkshare. Your product mix and pricing are the best on the net and you have a easy to navigate site for shoppers. Are we to assume that any sales made from BeFree links ceased tracking as soon as you announced your move to Linkshare.

    We all know it take less than 1 minute to turn off the reporting of sales to the networks. Drop one HTML tag line on the order confirmation page and affiliates receive zip for traffic. Are the problems at BeFree reporting done to punish you for leaving? Have you upset ValueClick/BeFree applecart by no longer working with the likes of Gator and ShopNow or is this still a private labeled practice? Out of all the e-tailers out their your site offers the savvy web shopper true bargains and post sales support. You are closing sales every second we view this post. You really don't need us to succeed ..but it would be nice to still get a check every month from OverStock like I did before February 2002.

  7. #7
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>after you were alerted to problems tracking sales back to Reporting.net <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Ugh, I don't think I even want to ask what that is all about.

    I get the impression this happens too often and only a few affiliate managers have the integrity to alert affiliates and credit them accordingly after the probelm was fixed.

  8. #8
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    The only occurance I know of where a merchant's affiliate manager at BeFree corrected the errors, traced back the missing sales and credited the affiliate accounts was TigerDirect. This occurred after they fired the old alliliate manager and Andy was anxious to get to the root of the poor conversions and negative "secret shopper" type emails claiming correctly thta sales didn't show up. All the others just say to themselves OOOPS ..hope they ( affiliates) never find out.

    The super affiliates and portals probably refuse to use the general Reporting.net interface. I'll check for some Stats at BeFree for Overstock daily. I'll also check the stats at Linkshare. My confusion comes from knowing shopping cart programs. How does one cart ( Overstock only has one) seperate which sale comes from BeFree or Linkshare referrals. Easy solution is rotate the carts reporting codes once a week and NOT credit sales for thta week to the other network.

    [ 03-20-2002: Message edited by: EcomCity.com ]

  9. #9
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Shawn has corrected the reporting problem at BeFree. Accidently erased the Reports button link. November/December results show 1 sale per every 87 Clicks..good!! Starting January 10th it took 650+ clicks to generate one sale. Increased traffic counts and decreased closing ratio. Linkshare creatives now raise the traffic levels and get a 4.20% average click rate but require 400+ clicks to get a sale. I'll work on bringing down all the BeFree links and showcase the LS ones. Maybe when all the kinks are worked out (question of having only ONE shopping cart -2 networks tracking codes) they will get back to the normal 100clicks per sale.

  10. #10
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    Sorry for the delay in my response - I've been out of the office for a few days. I accidentally deleted the reporting link in BeFree, which was why no one could run reports for Overstock. Terribly sorry, I had a blond moment. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

    I fixed the problem the other day, so everyone should see the reporting area for Overstock within BeFree. As for payment problems, I am totally unaware of any issues w/ improper tracking through LinkShare or BeFree. If anyone has specific issues, please let me know and I will correct them ASAP.

    A bit about conversions..
    As many of you may know, I'm fairly new to the Affiliate/Marketing roll, and took over Overstock's Affiliate Marketing in late January. Since that time, I have created and monitored hundreds of promotions for affiliates. The data I have gathered has helped me to determine which of our promotions yield the best conversions, and which promotions are duds. I will be putting all of that knowledge to good use over the course of the next few months, so please bare with me.

    I will tell you that one of our pormotions, the "Winter Clearance Sale $10 OFF $100 for new customers" promotion is yielding an 8-10% conversion rate overall. Additionally, we just launched 12 different 5% OFF coupons for all customers which yield 3-15% conversion rates, depending on how you promote them.

    My goal is to boost affiliate generated revenues, which in turn boosts your commissions, so our goals are the same. If anyone has ideas, please email me at shawn@overstock.com. I have learned a lot from folks like Mike (thanks Mike), and many ideas brought to my attention by affiliates have been put into action in the past several weeks.

    I am also willing to co-brand various marketing promotions, and I'm open to any promotional ideas that you might have.

    Hope this helped. As always, please let me know if there is anything else I can do for you...

    Thanks,

  11. #11
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    Shawn,

    Here's a suggestion - make an Overstock special landing page and promote ONE item or TWO items at most with a link at the bottom to the Overstock main page. No other links on the page but the BUY link for the deals offered. Make each deal a limited time offer and push the buy it now or it might not be available at this price angle.

    Then URL for affiliates stays the same but every week or so you change the deals. You could make 3 different pages and staggger them changewise so all the affiliates do not promote the same thing at once.

    Then we can promote special deals which people always want to know about and set alot of cookies and get some sales. For example, if I send somethng like this out to
    1,000 people, I pretty much know I will get
    at least 1 to 10 sales, maybe more if it is a killer deal.

    I can have my CPC affiliates send traffic to view the special deals of the week and get 1,000 eyeballs a day to see it minimum.

    I don't know how that Alpaca blanket deal has done, but you can't beat the price anywhere on the planet. That would have been a good one for the special of the week with a lower price second special deal on the page.

  12. #12
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Shawn double check reporting of sales by actually running through some sample transactions on both BeFree and Linkshare coded links. As I transition all the links over to Linkshare on 5 different web properties I'd like to be sure BOTH networks are reporting sales. I have never encountered OverStock clicks that produced less than 1 sale per every 150 clicks in 2 years. Now both networks are showing it takes my same targeted visitors over 500 clicks to show 1 sale. This can only be verified by you personally clicking on a unmodified Overstock link ( choose on from many pages at EcomCity.com) and purchase an item. Track the reporting issue and then cancel the sale and resulting commission on both networks. Neither network penalizes merchants by showing their conversion ratios. I'm with you all the way on getting a handle on mastering the merchant interface. Step one is to relieve your own mind that ALL sales get credited so affiliates like me can get into our part of the bargain...generating a buying public.

    BeFree stats for traffic show:
    Total impressions=77,329 clicks=1,720 ratio= 2.22% ..this show my side of the bargain is above average for generating clicks so I entice your potential customers. Those landing on your site have a huge variety of bargains so the ZERO cookie days at BeFree should immediately be raised to the 7 days offered at LS if your running parallel programs. 1720 clicks produced 2 sales netting me 6.12. Thousands of affiliates still showing BeFree creatives should not be penalized by sporatic reporting of sales as they endevor to cross over to LS links which do not cover all departments landing sections. Has BeFree ceased recording sales after 03/12/2002??

    [ 03-25-2002: Message edited by: EcomCity.com ]

  13. #13
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Shawn;
    You'll get a lot more folks at ABW signing up at Linkshare for you if fairly transisition your program from BeFree. Not responding to my question on parallel tracking and reporting of sales to your ONE shopping cart for both BeFree and LS links is pertinent. I still show more impressions and clicks on BeFree links but no sales activity. Therefore I can only assume thta if your reports DO NOT show sales on both networks every day ..then BeFree tracking doesn't work.

  14. #14
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    Sorry for the delay in my response, Mike.

    BeFree tracking appears to be working, as does LinkShare's. However, based on your feedback, I'm going to run a series of tests today, tonight, and tomorrow to ensure that everything is working as it should with BeFree.

    Every test that I have run with LinkShare has passed with 100% success - I couldn't be happier with LinkShare. In regards to BeFree, I am showing sales for several folks who I am desperately trying to get converted over to LinkShare.

    Let me do some more testing and I will respond back.

    Also, thanks for the feedback above. I'll see what I can do. Great feedback.

    Thank you,

  15. #15
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    Shawn,

    Just a friendly reminder.

    The January and February invoices with Overstock/Befree still show "awaiting payment". Any word on payment dates?

    You guys have a greatv affiliate program. can't wait to try our linkshare new account.

    Thanks

    Marcelle

  16. #16
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    In regards to commissions from BeFree...
    I was working with BeFree's AR department 2 weeks ago to get this resolved and thought it was taken care of. I'm not sure why the checks have not been sent, but I emailed my contacts there, and I'll follow up in the morning with a phone call.

    I'm sorry about this, but I'll stay on top of it to get it resolved as quickly as possible.

    Now for some good news, a tad bit early...

    Actually, come to think of it, this posting at abestweb.com is the first I've spoken about it to anyone outside of Overstock & LinkShare.

    Anyone want higher commissions for products?

    I guess I should probably stay low key for now, so I won't go in to too much more detail... [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

    Thank you,

  17. #17
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Anyone want higher commissions for products? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Um, sure why not.

  18. #18
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    shawn,

    is overstock going to end the use of befree and if you do, are you going to pay for balance that is below the min requirement?

  19. #19
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    Yes we are going to end our relationship with BeFree, but we don't have a firm date for this as of yet. As it now stands, no one can create new links through BeFree. I don't want to end our relationship with BeFree until all affiliates stop using BeFree links, mainly because I don't want affiliate websites to end up with broken links. So, as soon as everyone is off of BeFree and over to LinkShare, I'll officially pull the plug w/ BeFree.

    As far as commissions go...
    I will make sure that all commissions that are due to affiliates, even if under the $20 minimum, get paid to the affiliates when we officially close our services with BeFree.

    I'm working with BeFree as we speak to get these payment issues resolved.

    Thanks,

    Shawn

  20. #20
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Shawn;
    Try to get your creatives and landing pages duplicated for everything you had at BeFree. Many of us set up pages for specific sub categories like Hardware power tools and others that went directly to those sections. I'm not finding replacement banners or text links for these

  21. #21
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    Thank you, Mike. I've been working on adding these targeted links and will continue to do so over the course of the next few weeks.

    In regards to BeFree commissions...
    BeFree said they have everything they need from Overstock to cut the commission checks on 4/5/02 for January and Februaruy commissions.

    Thanks, and please keep the feedback coming...

    Shawn

  22. #22
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Shawn I'd highly recommend you somehow pick Andy Romerez brain about how to put confidence back into your program. The move to Linkshare from BeFree will never transistion well if neither network shows any results for affiliate efforts and traffic. Two networks driving traffic to you should automatically increase your commission payouts. My current stats for the last 2 months show my income level for increasing the total clicks to Overstock has DROPPED my commissions by over 80%. Clicks to impression ratios have gone up so their is nothing I can do to reverse this on my end. The only avenue left for me is to try individual product links and showcase the dynamic rotating rich media banners. If that doesn't work you'll get thrown into the second tier of affiliate enabled merchants.

  23. #23
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    Mike,

    I'm sorry to here that. I'm not sure why that is because our affiliate business continues to grow rapidly each month this year. Most of my affiliates have been steadily increasing revenues, especially since the recent switch. You might want to try some of the promotions we're running.

    The 5% Off coupons have consistently been getting conversion rates ranging from 5-33%. The Bed, Bath & Linens 5% OFF coupon is consistently above 20% conversion. As of right now, it has a 33.3% conversion, so it's hot!

    Also, the "Free Shipping on orders over $49" campaign is starting to really take off - especially since most of the competition is advertising Free Shipping on orders over $99.

    I've got some more ideas to help boost your revenue. Give me a few days to put some things together and I'll give you a call.

    Thanks,

  24. #24
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Shawn your confusing your efforts to automatic feed the scumware/parasites posing as super affiliates with your normal affiliate base. Those above stats promoting coupons and special limited offers posted to web pages make no decernable difference to conversions at BeFree. Affiliates still sending traffic through the normal BF links see no sales activity and CANNOT post or get to these offers ..they apply only to the scumware accounts who get autoloaded to be included in todays mass e-mail spam campaigns or overlays & Popups on hijacked traffic.

    BF traffic stats as I purge links:
    Traffic
    EcomCity -worlds most complete shopping community
    From 03/12/2002 To 04/06/2002
    Affiliate Site Transaction Day Transaction Date Impressions Click Throughs Click to Impression %
    EcomCity -worlds most complete shopping community Tuesday 03/12/2002 3,522 72 2.04%
    Wednesday 03/13/2002 3,363 86 2.56%
    Thursday 03/14/2002 2,911 51 1.75%
    Friday 03/15/2002 2,776 63 2.27%
    Saturday 03/16/2002 2,293 51 2.22%
    Sunday 03/17/2002 2,575 50 1.94%
    Monday 03/18/2002 3,498 73 2.09%
    Tuesday 03/19/2002 3,084 69 2.24%
    Wednesday 03/20/2002 3,226 53 1.64%
    Thursday 03/21/2002 2,914 75 2.57%
    Friday 03/22/2002 2,647 85 3.21%
    Saturday 03/23/2002 2,408 51 2.12%
    Sunday 03/24/2002 2,551 57 2.23%
    Monday 03/25/2002 2,794 68 2.43%
    Tuesday 03/26/2002 2,827 52 1.84%
    Wednesday 03/27/2002 2,464 48 1.95%
    Thursday 03/28/2002 2,168 41 1.89%
    Friday 03/29/2002 2,441 49 2.01%
    Saturday 03/30/2002 1,804 36 2.00%
    Sunday 03/31/2002 1,921 36 1.87%
    Monday 04/01/2002 2,461 59 2.40%
    Tuesday 04/02/2002 2,695 64 2.37%
    Wednesday 04/03/2002 2,824 68 2.41%
    Thursday 04/04/2002 2,540 58 2.28%
    Friday 04/05/2002 2,468 32 1.30%
    Saturday 04/06/2002 2,362 57 2.41%

    Total impressions=69,537 clicks=1,504 ratio= 2.16% for targeted pre-sold traffic.

    Sales Results for same period where every single visitor get exposed to these coupon specials and Free freight offers the moment they land on your pages:
    Revenue (Detail)
    EcomCity -worlds most complete shopping community
    From 03/12/2002 To 04/06/2002
    Affiliate Site Transaction Day Transaction Date Shipments Shipped Sales Returns Returned Sales Net Sales Site Revenue
    EcomCity -worlds most complete shopping community Tuesday 03/12/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Wednesday 03/13/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Thursday 03/14/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Friday 03/15/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Saturday 03/16/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Sunday 03/17/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Monday 03/18/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Tuesday 03/19/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Wednesday 03/20/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Thursday 03/21/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Friday 03/22/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Saturday 03/23/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Sunday 03/24/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Monday 03/25/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Tuesday 03/26/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Wednesday 03/27/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Thursday 03/28/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Friday 03/29/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Saturday 03/30/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Sunday 03/31/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Monday 04/01/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Tuesday 04/02/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Wednesday 04/03/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Thursday 04/04/2002 1 $14.99 0 $0.00 $14.99 $0.75
    Friday 04/05/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
    Saturday 04/06/2002 0 $0.00 0 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00

    Total 1 sale for $14.99 0 returns=$0.00 Net sales=$14.99 commissions earned on 1504 click throughs =$0.75 which equals less than 1/10th of a cent per click through.

    Compare this for the similar amount of impressions/clicks to OverStock with ZERO cookie days at BF for this period when BF recorded sales:
    Revenue (Summary)
    EcomCity -worlds most complete shopping community
    From 11/12/2001 To 12/31/2001
    Affiliate Site # Shipments Shipped Sales # Returns Returned Sales Net Sales Site Revenue
    EcomCity -worlds most complete shopping community # of sales=58 Gross amt.=$4,928.08 0 returns= $0.00 Net amt=$4,928.08 comissions earned= $212.47

  25. #25
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    Mike, I have checked, double-checked, and triple-checked everything w/ BeFree. I am still showing sales activity within BeFree for those Affiliates that are using BeFree links. Over the weekend, EcomCity.com showed sales activity as well.

    I'm not sure why your clicks are not converting as well as expected, but I have confirmed that BeFree is still working properly. My suggestion is to switch to LinkShare as soon as possible. It's only a matter of time before we shut BeFree down completely.

    Thanks,

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