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  1. #1
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    For the last 90 plus days we have been doing a test. Here are the results.

    NetQuotes has both a indie program and are on CJ. They used to convert real well on CJ. When they set up the indie program we joined up and thought it would be cool to test CJ NetQuote against the Indie NetQuote using the two identical pages with the exact same verbiage, banners etc.

    The traffic all came for PPCSE for the exact same ad and keywords. We used Find What and GoClick and reversed the page links every two weeks so as to have equal time and as close to equal traffic as possible from both PPSE

    These pages were tallied from May 1 to July 31. Traffic was pretty even. The CJ page had 30 more visitors.

    Results for the CJ NetQuote - ZERO CONVERSIONS and zero dollars earned.
    Results for the Indie NetQuote - 21 Conversions and over $50 earned.

    Pretty interesting, eh? The tracking works fine, right?

  2. #2
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    You were able to run ads on 2 PPCSEs for 90 days for less than $50 ?

  3. #3
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    21 conversions vs. zero could *not* be a great differance .... how many hits in total? Were the landing pages the same? Plus using parasitic laden findwhat you are sure to get some who have some sort of download on their machine and since CJ allows most of them into their programs that could also contribute to your results.
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  4. #4
    Affiliate Marketing Consultant Linda - 5starAffiliatePrograms's Avatar
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    Jersey Jean since I work with Netquote I am really glad I saw this. Many of Netquotes top performers have moved in-house and there are a couple reasons. The in-house software has many additional features specific to their program that help target marketingefforts.

    The in-house affiliates are also making A LOT more money than on CJ. Top affiliate in January made over $23K.

    However I am so glad you reported your little test. Granted it would take more clicks and time for a scientific study.

    I have been doing some analysis accross multiple CJ programs. Almost all are down in sales even though impressions and number of active affiliates are up. (That could be partly summer or economy or something too. There are sales ups & downs that happen for reasons that don't have anything to do with your effort or CJ.)

    NOTE: My observations are simply that! I have not done a scientific study and am not making any judgements or accusations, just throwing some things out there for consideration.

    In addition to Norton and Kazaa lite there are more anti-spyware and ad blockers out ther everyday. Many block, flag or delete network cookies. And of course with Norton which is being shipped with most new computers the ads and text links are totally wiped out.

    I am becoming increasingly concerned about cookie tracking. As there is more publicity about spyware and adware (which we all applaud) there is also a down side and I think more and more consumers think all cookies are bad. So I think more are blocking and deleting cookies. I also think consumers may be turning up their security so that 3rd party cookies are blocked but not 1st party cookies. This would make CJ cookies blocked but not indies that use their own software and don't pass 3rd party cookies.

    CJ tracking? Alot of people compain that it's not working correctly. I have seen things that make me wonder, but have no proof. Some say CJ sales have really gone down the past 6 months and I am seeing that as a trend too. I am more likely to think it's the cookie and ad blocking issues.

    Again JJ's test and my observations aren't enough to make any serious judgements on. Although I am known for my anti-parasite stance, I am almost more concerned about cookies than anything else these days. I wish there was another way to track. I am working with some other tracking solutions to try to come up with something besides cookie based tracking.

    I think if CJ could also come up with something to back up cookie tracking it would be huge! And of course, we are still waiting for the solutions to the Norton blocking that was supposed to be "coming soon" a few months ago.

  5. #5
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    IMHO, there is no technical difference between a cookie set by qksrv (CJ) and one set by an indie programs. Both are treated as third party when the cookie is set (visitor is on affiliate site). All browers treat them as same.

    Most indie programs do not set P3P complaint cookie, CJ cookies are P3P complaint. Yes, adware remove programs can/may identify CJ cookie and can/may allow users to delete them. Whereas indie programs are so small (because they are not a network) and mostly unknown, adware remove programs do not consider them.

    There is no technology available in the market which can identify visitor referral source in the later visits. Some lead programs can do that without cookies where you have to enter phone numbers etc. to get a price quote (example, DSL resellers). But with most CPA programs (retail sites), this thing does not work.

  6. #6
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    quote:
    Catalyst wrote:

    The in-house software has many additional features specific to their program that help target marketingefforts.

    The in-house affiliates are also making A LOT more money than on CJ.


    I think Catalyst just described an instance where CJ software is inferior to an in-house setup. Maybe Todd could explain why they still need CJ despite such.

    To say that the in-house affiliates are making A LOT more money ...I take it that the emphasis is on "A LOT". Sorta like 21 conversions to zip as in Jersey Jean's test.

    Can we believe that conversions are primarily so much better with the in-house because of "many additional features"? If you can, then great ...and thanks for showing by this instance how inferior CJ is.

    Furthermore, let's say 1000 affiliates report their small tests ...and a majority are reporting the same situation (an apparent reporting problem with CJ) ...this can no longer be said to be a small test, but together is quite a large one, and one very convincing.

  7. #7
    Ad Network Rep ToddCrawford's Avatar
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    Two points

    Linda - I would look at coversion rates, not just commissions earned. Top affiliates will likely have better conversion rates which is why they are also earning more commissions.

    Commissions paid out each month (network wide) are not declining. It is very difficult to determine what the actual issues are that would effect these types of tests. Although I am not disputing the data, I am also not taking them as facts.

    Nothing is perfect and there is probably give and take with any solution or between any network and any in-house program.
    Todd Crawford
    Co-Founder, Impact Radius

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  8. #8
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    The test was not scientific, but it points out something is wrong at CJ.

    If CJ had gotten even one sale it would have at least shown a positive.

    I think we may have uncovered the CJ cuprit in a conversation with another AM this morning.

    We were knocking down sales at a good rate for this one merchant until about 4 months ago. We went to ZERO for 500, from 1 in less than 50.

    Come to find out, about that time he put some click tracking software from enhance something which tracked where the clicks to the sale recording page came from...

    I bet this datamining thingy is the problem and a bunch of merchants are using it.

    We will find out as he said he pulled it yesterday and went back to the before set up where sales were good.

    Plus, we told him about SAS and he is going to explore setting up a program over there.

    He's not a happy camper.

  9. #9
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    Todd darling:

    Commissions paid out each month (network wide) are not declining. It is very difficult to determine what the actual issues are that would effect these types of tests.

    Not according to the VC latest quarterly report.

    Facts are not your strong suit. As you say:

    "Although I am not disputing the data, I am also not taking them as facts."

  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador Andy's Avatar
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    quote:
    Todd wrote:
    Commissions paid out each month (network wide) are not declining.
    I wonder if Todd could still say that if they subtracted Ebates, WhenU, 180Solutions, and the rest of the software apps from the totals...

    Andy

    [Edited to add: I guess he can't really say that anyway, given Jersey Jean's post...]

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador Paul_Ward's Avatar
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    quote:
    Originally posted by Jersey Jean:
    The test was not scientific, but it points out something is wrong at CJ.


    Well as an ex-scientist I'd say that if the test were not scientific, it proved nothing than to show that it might be worth carrying out a scientific test.

    Many of the "facts" presented on this forum are based on sample sizes that are just not significant, they happen to fit in with pre-conceived ideas.

    However I would be very interested in the results of a truly scientific test.

  12. #12
    Ad Network Rep ToddCrawford's Avatar
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    The earnings call did not say we didn't pay out more to affiliates, it said we didn't pay out as much as we projected (actually it refered to our earnings but I guess they are related).

    It is like you saying you expected to generate $100 in commissions last month but only made $80 and the month before that you earned $60. You made $20 more than the previous month but projected to make $40 more.

    Facts are my strong point by the way.
    Todd Crawford
    Co-Founder, Impact Radius

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  13. #13
    Affiliate Marketing Consultant Linda - 5starAffiliatePrograms's Avatar
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    quote:
    Can we believe that conversions are primarily so much better with the in-house because of "many additional features"? If you can, then great ...and thanks for showing by this instance how inferior CJ is.


    Sorry JJ & Kelly that's not what I said. I did NOT say CJ tracking is inferior not is that what I meant.

    What I said was "The in-house software has many additional features SPECIFIC to their program that help target marketing efforts."

    These are features that would not even make sense for CJ to offer. Like special reports that let you easily evaluate which type of insurance leads in which state are paying the most so you can target your marketing, etc.

    So again not saying at all that CJ is inferior just that this program since it's rev share
    based with varying commissions, in-house software could be tweaked for special needs.

    And to some of the other comments I also was not saying in-house affiliates make a lot more simply due to Netquotes special tracking and reports. Nor was I saying anything bad about CJ. Most of my thread pointed to the issue of ad blockers and cookies which affect NETWORKS (not just CJ) more than in-house programs.

  14. #14
    ABW Ambassador CrazyGuy's Avatar
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    quote:
    Originally posted by KCEdit:
    IMHO, there is no technical difference between a cookie set by qksrv (CJ) and one set by an indie programs. Both are treated as third party when the cookie is set (visitor is on affiliate site).


    Not the major point of this topic - but surely that's not the case?

    The cookie is set when the visitor moves to the merchant site, not at the affiliate site (other than through cookie stuffing and it would be 3rd party there too). The 1st party is the surfer, the 2nd party is the domain in their address bar, anything else is a 3rd party.

    Health warning: I'm not a cookie expert.

  15. #15
    Ad Network Rep ToddCrawford's Avatar
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    quote:
    Not the major point of this topic - but surely that's not the case?

    The cookie is set when the visitor moves to the merchant site, not at the affiliate site (other than through cookie stuffing and it would be 3rd party there too). The 1st party is the surfer, the 2nd party is the domain in their address bar, anything else is a 3rd party.

    Health warning: I'm not a cookie expert.


    Some in-house programs use a tracking URL that is different than their site URL. For example: merchantnameaffiliates.com for the tracking and merchantname.com for the website. This would still be seen as a third-party cookie.
    Todd Crawford
    Co-Founder, Impact Radius

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  16. #16
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    quote:
    Originally posted by Catalyst:
    In addition to Norton and Kazaa lite there are more anti-spyware and ad blockers out ther everyday. Many block, flag or delete network cookies. And of course with Norton which is being shipped with most new computers the ads and text links are totally wiped out.

    I am becoming increasingly concerned about cookie tracking. As there is more publicity about spyware and adware (which we all applaud) there is also a down side and I think more and more consumers think all cookies are bad. So I think more are blocking and deleting cookies. I also think consumers may be turning up their security.

    Although I am known for my anti-parasite stance, I am almost more concerned about cookies than anything else these days. I wish there was another way to track. I am working with some other tracking solutions to try to come up with something besides cookie based tracking.

    You know, the source of the problem in all of the issues you mention is nothing other than parasites. Like you said, people hear cookies are bad, they get scared, so they delete everything and block everything. You can't blame them, they have no reason to care about this stuff the way we do.

    If it wasn't for adware that started popping up ads on people's computers, illegal installations and no removal procedures, and then blamed for tracking people's surfing habits among many other things, accurate or not, I'd bet an awful lot that we wouldn't be where we are today. It might have come at some point, but not so soon. We wouldn't need to have other programs to help us get rid of this stuff.

    Firewalls and spyware removers unfortunately only respond to what the majority of consumers want, their privacy kept private online. They don't care about affiliates, networks and cookies or who gets credit for a sale.

    Again, unfortunately, we all have to live and deal with the consequences of scums/scumware actions which account to much more than cookie stuffing/overwriting.

    Whoever comes out with a tracking solution that is reliable and doesn't involve cookies will make a FORTUNE online! And if this new solution cannot be used by parasites, even MOE MONEY MAKER for them!

    Just my thoughts...

    Catwoman

  17. #17
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
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    quote:
    Commissions paid out each month (network wide) are not declining.
    And, I am sure the parasites are very happy with that!
    quote:
    Facts are my strong point by the way.
    Yes, so you know which ones to leave out, right?
    Comments are opinion unless otherwise noted. Remember, pillage first. Then burn. Half of all people in the world have IQs under 100. You best learn to trust ol' SSanf!

  18. #18
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    Well, whatever is wrong at CJ, I hope they keep it up..my earnings have been on the upswing in the last few months.

  19. #19
    Full Member Travelin Man's Avatar
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    quote:
    Originally posted by Catwoman:
    If it wasn't for adware that started popping up ads on people's computers, illegal installations and no removal procedures, and then blamed for tracking people's surfing habits among many other things, accurate or not, I'd bet an awful lot that we wouldn't be where we are today. It might have come at some point, but not so soon. We wouldn't need to have other programs to help us get rid of this stuff.

    Firewalls and spyware removers unfortunately only respond to what the majority of consumers want, their privacy kept private online. They don't care about affiliates, networks and cookies or who gets credit for a sale.


    @Catwoman: I agree 100% with your comments. I'd bet a lot of affiliates use many of the very same tools they complain about to clean cookies, block pops, etc. I too have a firewall and clean cookies off my system regularly. Shoot, I know people who use programs to wipe cookies and temp files every time they shutdown their system.

    I’m afraid it's going to get worse before it gets better.

    TM
    Travelin' Colorado

  20. #20
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    Connie

    i thought you're a big fan of Linkshare's brand merchants?

    ---

    I think 21 to zip is something you can't ignore.
    there is something wrong with cj's conversion lately. i have said this over and over again, several transactions can appear in one hour, and then zip afterwards even after thousands of clicks (real clicks, not spider clicks). i don't necessarily blame CJ, but i think what's causing this is worth looking into.

  21. #21
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    quote:
    Originally posted by Connie Berg:
    Well, whatever is wrong at CJ, I hope they keep it up..my earnings have been on the upswing in the last few months.

    With Link redirects my sales are up too. I also think that ignoring Haiko's comment about findwhat is relevant.

    The issue isn't just CJ, it is all networks. And ad blocking could be costing us a lot more than the parasites did. I can get my links to show up, but as I stated before, I watched a surfer reject all the warning cookie pop ups as they surfed. Didn't even read them, just click reject on all of them. He isn't the only one doing that. So the parasites have stolen commissions in the past and they are forcing the issue so that none of us get to make money.

    I truly hope someone comes up with a new tracking system, because even massive education of the consumer at this point won't make much difference. If a software they TRUST says, this cookie is spyware, whether it is or not, they are going to reject it.
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  22. #22
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    In the last 3 days we have been on the phone with the AM of the CJ programs that USED to covert big time and now are basically ZERO.

    The problem seems to be in the datamining software coding they have all put on their sites to track where the internal clicks come form.

    It looks as if it's wipping out the affiliates cookie and setting the cookie of the datamining software vendor.

    That MIGHT be ONE of the culprits. Obviously the constant cascading of popup and the like have a big impact.

    Loxly is right that if you set up a good redirect of the link you tend to get credit for more cookies than if you do not.

    Yet our Adsense revenues are up over 50% in the last 2 months, SAS revenues the same. CJ is the one fly in the ointment and even with all their BS and Crapola before, they always converted enough to put up with the Toddspin.

    Now they even make LS look honest...and that is truly amazing from our perspective.

    The best we can do is keep on keeping on.

    I suggest that IF a merchant stops converting, you call them and ask them to move to Sharasale because you can bet it's CJ's fault.

    So far all the AM's we have talked to, have been astounded by what we have told them...and we have told everyone to come here and read all about it, to see that it's not just us being whiners.

    The only way CJ will fix the problem is if they start losing merchants and get a rep in the merchant arena, that the good affiliates will not join their programs if they are on CJ or LS.

    The more we talk up Shareasale to merchants, the faster we will get more high visibility merchants to go there.

    SAS has everything CJ has and one better - they are honest. Plus they cost less and have ZERO monthly fee.

    There are many problems with LS, but they have some honest merchants. The big problems from the affiliate perspective are consolidated payments, direct deposit and high payout thresholds.

    There really is no sense banging our heads against the wall, we should just send an email to all our CJ merchants and give them say 30 days to move to SAS or we will dump them.

    Ditto the LS people...if we all work together on this and start shortly, things will improve in a heartbeat. None of the CJ and LS merchants want to have their affiliates walk during the holiday season.

    100 plus letters to individual merchants the same effect will do wonders for the solving the pproblems.

    As long as Adsense exists, it's not as if you would go to zero income if you all did this.

    Sure some of you make decent money off CJ and LS merchants but it can't be that much because otherwise you wouldn't be complaining.

    As Haiko has poined out, you only need ONE good converting, HONEST merchant to make good money in AM. Think what we could do with 4 or 5 on an honest network ot better yet 2 honest networks.

    But when I make more money by 10x playing Bingo in a week at Bingo Mania at 5 cents per card than I make from CJ merchants...something needs to be fixed on the CJ end.

    Only problem is they don't want to fix it.

    Not a problem...get merchants to SAS and who will care.

  23. #23
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    It's about time since the heated threads on Data Mining and Clickstream monitoring programs that this issue gets raised. I think TD and a ton of other major merchants, plus the networks, have shoe horned these apps into the reporting snafus branding all network links as potential spyware.

    Jerseyjeans said...."The problem seems to be in the datamining software coding they have all put on their sites to track where the internal clicks come form."....so true
    Webmaster's... Mike and Charlie

    "What have you done today to put real value into a referral click...from a shoppers viewpoint!"

  24. #24
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
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    Jersey Jean, from the time you started posting, I had a feeling you are a pretty smart cookie.
    quote:
    SAS has everything CJ has and one better - they are honest. Plus they cost less and have ZERO monthly fee.
    Couldn't have said it better.

    I have few active CJ merchants to write to so I can't help there. When you write to merchants, be sure to tell them there are professional affiliates who will never see or know their program because we just don't even look at CJ merchants, much less use them. Almost ALL serious professional affiliates DO know and check SAS from time to time so all they really lose by leaving CJ is the thousands of non-professionals CJ has signed up. It is the professionals who bring the sales. What small amount of sales they lose from the moms and pops should be more than made up by the lower cost at SAS.

    Indies are better than CJ/LS. Because of on time guaranteed consolidated payment, SAS is better than indies.
    Comments are opinion unless otherwise noted. Remember, pillage first. Then burn. Half of all people in the world have IQs under 100. You best learn to trust ol' SSanf!

  25. #25
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
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    quote:
    The problem seems to be in the datamining software coding they have all put on their sites to track where the internal clicks come form.....It looks as if it's wipping out the affiliates cookie and setting the cookie of the datamining software vendor.

    This sounds pretty darned serious. Where's Mrs. B or someone who knows about this kind of stuff?
    Comments are opinion unless otherwise noted. Remember, pillage first. Then burn. Half of all people in the world have IQs under 100. You best learn to trust ol' SSanf!

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