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  1. #1
    Join Date
    January 17th, 2005
    Hi Abestwebers,
    Just before we open up an affiliate program, I would like to know what other affiliate mangagers and affiliate's thoughts are on sign up pages for affiliate programs - in house programs or networks.

    In other words, we are going to join a major affiliate network, but don't want bigger affiliates going to the network if we can strike a biz dev deal outside of it. We are thinking of making a universal form and then passing that information on to our inhouse program or to the network for sign up at our discretion.

    Is passing the info possible with the big networks (i.e. CJ, BeFree, etc)?

    What is the best approach with affiliates?
    1) Have them fill out a form and tell them we will respond in a few days and NOT mention our Network Program?
    2) Mention both programs and give them the option to sign up for one or the other?

    I don't want to lose them by not mentioning the network (some affiliates only work with Networks), but I also don't want them going to the network right away and us, the merchant, losing out on a good biz dev/partnership deal?

    What is my best approach?

    Thank you in advance.

  2. #2
    Ad Network Rep ToddCrawford's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Santa Barbara, CA
    Many advertisers manage both affiliates and "biz dev" partnerships via their affiliate solution provider. Obviously I am a fan of network solutions and believe that a company like Commission Junction can provide advertisers with the tools and service levels to manage any relationship.
    Todd Crawford
    Co-Founder, Impact Radius

    Give me a minute before I post again

  3. #3
    More Cheesier Than Ever Cheesehead's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Land of The NFL Champs!
    I guess as an affiliate I would want to know about both options. If I were planning on promoting your program extensively, I would perhaps opt for the inhouse option. If I were adding your product to a mix with limited promotion, I would want to be in the network for the sake of consolidated payments.
    This World is Not My Home
    We're gonna go inside, we're gonna go outside, inside and outside. . . And then we're gonna go go go and we're not gonna stop til we get across that goalline! Quotes from the movie Rudy, 1993

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador phillyburbs's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    in the PhillyBurbs!
    Since we're not a "bigger affiliate," this really wouldn't be an issue for us.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    January 17th, 2005
    So, you are saying that you want to access affiliates through a major network then migrate them to a cheaper forum to track them. Sounds pretty disingenious to me. Since, an in-house program requires a ton of trust we are not off on the right foot from the get go.

  6. #6
    notary sojac Herb ԿԬ's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Central/Western NY State
    sounds like "cherry-picking" to me, too.

    if, on the form, a prospective affiliate could see the different offers and make their own choice then it would be fair.

    private offers could come later, to be decided upon by the individual affiliate.

  7. #7
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Mansfield, TX
    I don't see a problem with a combination of network and in-house affiliate programs. Different affiliates like different things. There's obviously a difference in cost to the merchant, too.

    For instance, a merchant might want to offer:

    Network Choice - On CJ or SAS

    * 10% commission
    * consolidated checks, paid around the 20th
    * consolidated network minimum payment amount
    * more extensive reporting
    * trusted third party

    In-House Choice

    * 12% commission
    * monthly checks, paid first week of the month
    * $100 minimum payment
    * basic reporting
    * less impact by parasites/blockers/etc.

    I know which one I would choose.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    January 17th, 2005
    There can be a problem with multiple programs as we well know. I am not too technical, so I can't explain it, but just search this forum on "Multiple Tracking" or "Multiple Affiliate Programs" etc. to get the jist of the problem. Like Todd said, you might want to keep it all in one backend.

  9. #9
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    St Clair Shores MI.
    Your correct that the tracking is 100% at risk by the shopping cart program used by the merchant. Many carts cannot support multiple network reporting schemes...ever! BF and LS reporting is almost always non-compatable with the only option being merchants have to disable one or the other. Many chhose to leave both on and not report any sales as an auto on/off switch.

    CJ is the only network who took time to custom build reporting interfaces into yahoo store merchants ...then Yahoo changed/updated their cart ... I therefore do not trust any Yahoo store merchant to report affiliate sales. My own tests show a yahoo store merchant can whack all external network reporting by simply turning ON the internal Yahoo Store affiliate sales tracking feature. Very convienient during peak shopping periods.

    Loading up spyware and clickstream data mining operations within a merchant's site structure is another can of worms as evidence here by refusal of any network -merchant or clickstream data analitics provider to respond to numerous thread challenges here.

    I proved years ago, with TigerDirect at BF and Overstock at LS, these two networks can report referral sales ...IF... the merchants cookie/cart is fine tuned and tested weekly by the AM. OS could not migrate to LS and track BF sales...period! So Driveworks makes an intelligent business decision to stick with a proven enity as they cannot guarantee affiliate dual reporting capabilities from 2 seperate networks.

    In my Safe Haven Network model this never will be the case, as it is impossible for a merchant to NOT report a sale. It is also illegal for any Adblocker or Norton to blank an affiliates link and any merchant can open a SHN account without ever interferring with another network programs reporting.
    Webmaster's... Mike and Charlie

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

  10. #10
    Join Date
    January 17th, 2005

    You seriously think that technology is an issue at YahooStore? Yahoo is one of the foremost Internet Technology companies.

    Since, Yahoo Store is in essence a merchant and they choose not to allow BF/LS to integrate into their backend database as those two providers require and work exclusively with companies that don't require backend integration.

    I am afraid that your confusing someone looking for some simple advice.

    On this comment: "Many choose...not report any sales as an auto on/off switch."

    Unfortunately, that is the accurate point - with two systems you need to make decisions and build processes to decphifer where the $$$ goes. It is complex and some can pull it off, but it is complex.

    I would make sure of the fact that you have that designed in and tested before launching, otherwise stick to one tracking environment.

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