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  1. #1
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    MAJOR problems with Ebay.
    Once again, Ebay's supposed doubling of commissions coincides with a major decrease in leads reported, in my case catastrophically. I just fired this off to Ebay via CJ:

    There is something majorly wrong with the Ebay affiliate tracking and reporting that just happens to coincide with the doubling of commissions.

    I went back and checked my results from the past 5 months for the first 8 days of the month, and as you can see below, something has seriously changed for the worse (and there have been no changes to my sites).

    February 1-8, 2005. 0 leads.
    January 1-8, 2005. 12 leads, of which 5 converted.
    December 1-8, 2004. 9 leads, of which 4 converted.
    November 1-8, 2004. 6 leads, of which 3 converted.
    October 1-8, 2004. 7 leads, of which 3 converted.
    September 1-8, 2004. 7 leadds, of which 4 converted.

    Please advise.
    Registrations were even over the past 5 months for the first 8 days of the month up until this month where it dropped to zero.

    I guess I need to switch from being a content-driven site to being a parasite...

  2. #2
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    Can you also post your clicks to ebay for those time periods.

  3. #3
    Full Member TLE's Avatar
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    I've noticed a few unusual things since the beginning of the month:

    a) Registration Event Date coming after a bid/bin, for a given visitor.

    b) Registration & Bid (unreversed), without an Active registration.

    c) Registrations, converting to Active Registrations, without a matching bid/bin.

    Tuan

  4. #4
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    Clicks and dimes are coming through like gangbusters. The big-money registrations have disappeared entirely:

    Code:
                        Leads (converted)    Clicks    Dimes
    February 1-8, 2005.       0              3,223      381
    January 1-8, 2005.     12 (5)            2,766      370
    December 1-8, 2004.     9 (4)            3,104      488
    November 1-8, 2004.     6 (3)            2,499      328
    October 1-8, 2004.      7 (3)            3,086      369
    September 1-8, 2004.    7 (4)            2,547      352

  5. #5
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    With over 3,000 clicks you definitely should have had some registrations. I remember them sending out an email a week or two ago about some problem they had, forgot what it was. Wonder if they're having the same problems.

  6. #6
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    Reply from Ebay:

    We have notated that most of your clicks are coming from the same users in February. It would make sense that your existing user base would have already signed up with eBay through you or signed up before coming to your site. Also looking at your Bids and BINs, we can see some repeat bidders.
    Now wouldn't this be true *every* month? I've been using the Ebay affiliate program for almost 2 years now. They're trying to tell me that I've all of a sudden saturated my user base in one month after 2 years????

    Makes no sense to me.

  7. #7
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    How long does eBay pay on the bids that come from your registrations? Is it just for the 30 days after they sign up or is it forever?

  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador ToughTurkey's Avatar
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    The answer is neither...

    With an action referral occurance of "1", eBay only gives you a bid credit once. Not all bids within 30 days or forever, just the first bid.

    Whether the bidder signed up through you or not is of no consequence after the first bid - and sometimes you don't even get that first bid if he signs up through you and then bids through someone elses link within 30 days. (You should get the registration though in that scenario, but with ebay you'd never really know.)

  9. #9
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    Thank you. Explains, I think, the reversals I am seeing.

  10. #10
    mega crap martyogelvie's Avatar
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    echo.....

    i see the same thing only the registrations stopped about 3 days into this new commission structure. I saw a few each day for about 3 days in feb and then all of the sudden (donuts) nothing since.. nothing.. WTH???

    I am still getting the dimes, just no dollars ($20) argh!

    I think Marvin Gaye said it best; 'What's GOING ON?'

  11. #11
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    I ran the same reports to see how they compare to yours:

    Code:
                             DIMES    LEADS  (CONVT)     CLICKS
    February 1 - 8 (2005)      360      38      (18)      5,023
    January 1 - 8  (2005)      448      65      (28)      7,832
    December 1 - 8 (2004)      959     114      (52)     10,298
    November 1 - 8 (2004)      650      92      (43)      8,525
    October 1 - 8  (2004)      468      60      (29)      7,017
    September 1 -8 (2004)      463      50      (21)      7,157
    I've seen a drop in leads, but I've attributed to a major drop in traffic, thanks to the last Google update sticking it to me good.

    Last week was pitiful, and I wondered if something was wrong at eBay, but things improved Saturday, Sunday and yesterday. I had 5 paid leads each Sat & Sun, and 6 paid leads Monday. So far this month, there have been 51 total leads, and only 5 have been reversed.

    Considering my traffic is down, I'm pretty happy with the results I've been seeing from eBay.

  12. #12
    Domain Addict / Formerly known as elbowcreek Thomas A. Rice's Avatar
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    I see that igive lists eBay as one of their merchants.... There was a thread on here earlier about igive, could it be affecting your results in any way?

  13. #13
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    I don't think the parasites have as big an impact on eBay as they do with other merchants. The thing about eBay is that the Editor Kit provides you with the ability to provide very targeted lists of available items. Somebody will come to a page, go down the list and bid on several items. Better yet, they will bookmark the page and come back time and time again and do the same thing. They're not going to stop and think, oh let me go to igive, login, then hunt for the list of items on my own.

    By far, eBay is my most successful merchant. I just keep adding pages, and the income keeps growing. And because it is so easy, I can add at least 50 pages a day. I also tie in other merchants so I'm giving my visitors a selection, but more times than not, they'll select eBay over the other merchants.

    I don't see sites like igive or eBates taking the time to build all those directed pages. The best they can do is capture a few people thinking about joining eBay. But, even then, when the list is right in front of somebody, are they really going to take the time to sign-in to eBates or iGive to get a rebate/charitable donation?

    Now, for somebody who is just promoting eBay without providing Editor Kit results ... then yes, I could see it having an impact.

  14. #14
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    While I don't think it is that much an issue, tracy you seem to misunderstand the issue. You may want to research it, it is not about ebates or igive's sites but their applications.

  15. #15
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    As famed investment banker Baron Rothschild used to say:

    "The market will fluctuate."

    RadarCat, Webmaster
    http://www.os2warplinks.com

  16. #16
    Domain Addict / Formerly known as elbowcreek Thomas A. Rice's Avatar
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    Tracy-



    Ms. B's thread was suggesting that igive was not requiring surfers to go to their site in order for igive to get the commission........ here is the thread:

    http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread.php?t=55051

  17. #17
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    So, if I'm understanding this correctly,

    (1) somebody comes to one of my Editor Kit pages,
    (2) goes down the list of items, and clicks and bids on 10 of them
    (3) has igive software installed on their computer
    (4) gets the commission for all 10 bids

    I don't see this happening in my reports. Whenever I see one person bidding on several items (identifiable by the first number in Order Id when reports are downloaded), I see 10 different click times for the same date, and I don't see reversals.

    I absolutely agree that there software is wrong and should be banned, but I still don't see it having a major effect on my eBay commissions.

    Like everyone else, I'm still scratching my head wondering why any merchant would allow an affiliate that uses such software into their program. Sure, they're over-writing our cookies and stealing our commissions, but they are also over-writing the merchant's natural searches too, and inflating the income. Not only are they stealing from us, but they are stealing from the merchant, as well.

    I used to work in retail. Any employee caught stealing would get fired. If an employer turned a blind eye to theft, then that would only encourage more employees to steal. Cyberspace is certainly different from the real world. All merchants are doing when they allow these parasites into their programs is encourage more parasites to emerge. Until merchants ban together to ban parasites from all the programs, the problem isn't going to go away.

    I've been reading posts here about the parasite problems for two years, and there doesn't seem to have been much progress made in getting rid of them. Quite the contrary, it seems like more of them have entered the market. The problem has only gotten worse.

    I wish I could do as others have suggested, and remove the merchants that show up on the lists of those working with the likes of ebates. The problem is, that affiliate marketing is now my primary source of income, and 90% of my merchants are on the ebates list. If I got rid of them, then I'd have to go out and get a real-world job again.

  18. #18
    Domain Addict / Formerly known as elbowcreek Thomas A. Rice's Avatar
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    - - - - -
    I've been reading posts here about the parasite problems for two years, and there doesn't seem to have been much progress made in getting rid of them. Quite the contrary, it seems like more of them have entered the market. The problem has only gotten worse.

    I wish I could do as others have suggested, and remove the merchants that show up on the lists of those working with the likes of ebates. The problem is, that affiliate marketing is now my primary source of income, and 90% of my merchants are on the ebates list. If I got rid of them, then I'd have to go out and get a real-world job again.
    - - - - -

    Yeah, I agree, it's like cutting off the foot to save the toe. The only thing I've really done is to keep forwarding merchants to the appropriate threads, hoping a few of them will wise up and clean out the program. A few don't respond, many do with a wait and see attitude, and a few write back rather alarmed and ready to act.

    I didn't know if igive was affecting the eBay program much or not, just hoping someone smarter than I would take a good look and dig a little.

    Thanks!

  19. #19
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    I have to say that in spite of the parasites, and even my drop in ranking at Google, I'm making a good living at this. I earned more last year in affiliate marketing than I ever did working for somebody else.

    I just keep trying to focus on promoting areas that are not heavily promoted by anybody else and it seems to be working. I create mostly direct links to individual products, and add very targeted eBay Editor Kit lists at the bottom of almost every page.

    One thing I have been doing is removing all the banners from my site. Only about 1 in 100 sales seems to come from a banner. My logic is (and maybe it is false) that if I direct somebody to a specific product they are looking for, instead of a website in general, that I'm more apt to get the sale. If the parasite software tries to take over, I wonder if it forces a redirect to the home page, instead of the specific product page. When the surfer doesn't end up on the exact product they clicked on, then maybe they don't take the time to look for it and the parasite looses as well as the merchant.

    Any way, I laugh when I get these emails from merchants about bidding on their site name. Why would I do that? Somebody looking for a specific site, is more likely to get there directly than through one of my links. However, somebody looking for a well promoted specific product will end up at my site first, then the merchant's site. Another reason I'm killing all the banners on my site.

  20. #20
    Domain Addict / Formerly known as elbowcreek Thomas A. Rice's Avatar
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    - - - - -
    I earned more last year in affiliate marketing than I ever did working for somebody else.
    - - - - -

    December was mahhhhvelous! So far, this year has maintained a decent rate for me, hope I didn't just jinx myself, lol.

  21. #21
    Member labinski's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracy
    I have to say that in spite of the parasites, and even my drop in ranking at Google, I'm making a good living at this. I earned more last year in affiliate marketing than I ever did working for somebody else.
    Tracy

    Hey I just noticed this thread, and saw your posts. I wanted to let you know here that about a year ago I was on aBestWeb reading the forums, paying atttention to eBay topics. Most people use it as an opportunity to bellyache about it. Your comments about the eBay affiliate program was *extremely* constructive and helpful to me. And I'm now reading a year later that you are still prospering. Well done.

    Using a number of the points you make, I successfully parlayed them into a number of very active areas on my sites, which perform very well.

    Thank you for helping show me how to use the eBay affiliate program to make money. Very often, sifting through the noise to find the music takes a while, but its worth it. And it makes fine message forums like this one worthwhile.

    Steve

  22. #22
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    Wow! Steve, you made my day! I even dragged my husband in from the other room to read your post.

    I vaguely remember those threads last year, and recall that my knee-jerk reaction was, "if you aren't making money with eBay, you're not promoting them correctly." That's why I made the effort to share what I learned about successfully promoting them.

    Thank you for taking the time to let me know that those insights helped you.

  23. #23
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    Tracy,

    You seem to do extremely well with Ebay. Question (if you don't mind my asking): are your pages legitimate content pages, or are they pages created solely to drive people to Ebay?

    I'm going to voice an opinion that is probably in the minority here: I absolutely loathe the myriad of faux shopping pages all over the net that serve no use other than to cause phoney search results in search engines and stuff commissions. Any more, if you search for any tangible item or consumer product, many of the results are pages with no content whatsoever, and just a bunch of affiliate links. They're garbage! I hate that crap!

    *ahem* Sorry about that.

    Anyway, I'd be interested in hearing from people that are using Ebay successfully, but within a very narrow market segment. For example, my site is a music reference site, but only targeted to 80s hard rock and heavy metal, not music in general.

    Thanks...

  24. #24
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    Agreed. I find the web much less interesting these days. Whenever I search for a topic, 9 times out of 10 half the search results are affiliate links.

    It might be good for some people in the short run, but replacing content with garbage affiliate pages is going to kill the golden goose.

    Ralph

  25. #25
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    ... are they pages created solely to drive people to Ebay?
    If you mean like when you do a search at google, and when you click the link you end up directly on eBay, then the answer is ABSOLUTELY NOT! I hate that myself so I won't do it.

    What I'm talking about is actual pages on my site. When somebody clicks the link, they actually end up at a page on my site dedicated to the item they are looking for. The possibilities at eBay are endless for just about any subject. For example, say your site is all about comic books. (I don't know anything about this subject, but you'll understand my reasons for not disclosing my actual subject matter.)

    Okay, so you have a page dedicated to Superman, another to Spiderman, etc. The way I would set it up the Superman page would be to describe the history of the Superman comics, including details like who drew them, when they were initially published, etc. Then I would provide links to any merchant that currently sells Superman comics. These would be indvidual product links, not just a link to the merchant's site for comic books. At the bottom of the page under the heading "LOOK FOR SUPERMAN AT EBAY," I would create an Editor Kit list of all the available Superman comics at eBay. This way, people will have an opportunity to see all the "out of print" Superman comics available.

    I've got to say, that for the subject I use, I already have several thousand pages, and I'm still adding. I try to stick on a schedule of adding at least 10 eBay pages a day. I'll work on other things, but before I go to bed at night, I have to make 10 eBay pages. Last year I made over $15K with eBay. This year I'm looking to double that.

    I should also add that over 60% of my traffic comes from repeat visitors. People bookmark my eBay pages and come back again and again. I can run reports on CJ, and see the same person bidding throughout the month. When you set the items to open in a new browser window, people just go down the list and bid on several items in one visit. Why don't they just set up the same search at eBay? Because at eBay, when create the same search list, unless you know to right-click to open in a new browser window (and there are still a lot of novice surfers who don't even know this trick), you have to keep going back to the list using the back button, or the link eBay provides. My way is easier for them.

    There are so many things in this world that they just plain don't make any more, and are in high demand. The best place for people to look for these things is eBay. I just help them find them faster because frankly, when somebody is looking for something, the first thought in their head isn't, "Let me check eBay." If it was, then eBay wouldn't need us to drive bidders to their site.

    If you want to see the post Steve was talking about, it is #9 in this thread:
    http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread.php?t=3099

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