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  1. #1
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    What does everyone use for software to manage/process datafeeeds and create the final html pages? What's most compatible with FrontPage?

    Apollo

  2. #2
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    ASP with access databases. Haven't a clue about frontpage compatability. Tried a demo and didn't find features I wasn't already able to create by coding.

    I'm upgrading skills to .Net programming and SQL Server to handle the heavy demands and huge databases I'm heading towards.

    Wayne

  3. #3
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    Any products out there using php/mysql?

  4. #4
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    Also, on the topic of CJ datafeeds:

    So far, I've only used datafeeds directly from merchants. I'm curious if the feed available through CJ has an organized structure throughout. That is, could the same ASP page that reads Merchant A's data read Merchant B's without a complete rewrite?

    Wayne

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador FFoc's Avatar
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    I use php/mysql almost exclusively to build my sites -- with the excaption of one script I picked up for a specific feed, which is in perl.

    Next up, I'm going to give Zope a go..

    --
    "The greatest good you can do for another is not just to share your riches, but to reveal to him his own." – Benjamin Disraeli
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    Ford Fox-body Owners Club -- http://www.ford-fox.org

  6. #6
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    From what I've seen, the things that vary the most (across all merchants and networks, not just CJ) are:

    1) Categories. Nobody does it the same way, even within a single network. Some have no category information. Some have one level of categories. Some have 2-6 levels of categories. They're almost all stored differently.

    2) Prices. Most feeds have two or three price fields (usually Price, Retail Price, and Sale Price). Very few merchants use them consistently. I would expect the list price in the "Retail Price" field, the merchant's regular price in the "Price" field, and a special sale price in the "Sale Price" field. Either most merchants don't get this, or I'm expecting the wrong thing. Most merchants put their price in the "Retail Price" field and leave the others blank. I check all three fields and get the lowest price.

    3) File format. Some networks use CSV. Some use pipe-delimiited. Some have headers. Some don't. Some enclose some or all fields in quotes. Some put multiple mechants in one file. Some put a single merchant per file. Some use the same filename each time. Some use different filenames each time. Some compress the files with Zip. Some with Gzip. Some don't compress the files.

    4) Stock Indicators. Most merchants only send in-stock items. Some have a "Y"/"N" flag. Some use "Yes"/"No". Some use "In Stock" or "Out of Stock". Some put how many days to ship. Some put an ETA for out of stock items.

    5) Descriptions. I surprisingly large number don't include description. There are usually two description fields (for short/long descriptions). Which one gets used is pretty random.

    6) Product Names. Some merchants have absolutely awful product names. Some are lower case. Sometimes they put the product names in the short description field instead. Sometimes the product name is so vague that it isn't helpful.

    7) Skus/Product Numbers. Some merchants don't have unique Sku's/Product Numbers, which can really throw a kink in things.

    8) Images. The sizes of images vary tremendouslly. Most are thumbnails, but some are full size images. Two separate fields would be helpful, but none of the networks allow for that.

    9) HTML in Descriptions. Sometimes merchants will include HTML including links (without affiliate codes) and images with relative URL's (which show up as broken).

    If you code things right, you can handle all variations with a single program by defining parameters for each merchant and/or network. That has some big advantages.

    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com

    [This message was edited by MichaelColey on November 30, 2003 at 08:32 AM.]

  7. #7
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    This has been my experience with the 20 or so datafeeds's I'm working with. I was hoping there would be a consistant structure within the CJ feed to get some of the merchants beyond the single link stage on my site.

    Time is scarce. If I have to rewrite my scripts for each merchant within the CJ feed, I may as well stick with the free merchant-supplied feeds. For the most part, the merchants that offer them seem to be committed to affiliate marketing and see value in offering the tools to make sales happen.

    CJ should reconsider their fee policy.

    Wayne

    (Sorry Apollo: Took the thread off-topic.)

    [This message was edited by NorthernStudio on November 30, 2003 at 12:12 PM.]

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