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  1. #1
    Mama in Charge Anne's Avatar
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    Angry Live Chat *still* stealing sales from YOU at Improvements and Personal Creations
    Personal Creations is the latest participant. I am not sure how many others have this, as I only notice when my sales disappear. When you click through an affiliate link to a merchant site using live chat, a coupon pops up letting the customer know they can save $10 ( or get a free gift or whatever) by clicking to live chat. Then Live Chat representatives talk your customer into placing the order through them, and they get the commission, not you.

    Improvements had supressed this for affiliates in the past , but as of today it is popping again. Lillian Vernon suppressed it in the past, and it still appears to be supressed through affiliate links.

    I am pulling Improvements and Personal Creations once again and notifying them. It is hard enough to make sales with parasites stealing commissions, it is sad when the very merchants we advertise for try to block our sales.

    I am not sure how many other merchants participate with Live Chat, but those who do will all do the same thing, block our sales. If you know of any, please list them so I can pull those links as well .

  2. #2
    15 years and counting
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    I was on one of my sites, clicked on a Personal Creations link, added the product to my cart, went to check out, just before I had to type my CC #, I saw that pop up to save $10, (no warning you're entering a chat) clicked on it and here you are:
    Live Person again. "I am gathering today's online specials to share with you now. Press SEND below to learn about Today's Special Savings and Offers! "
    So, it's working again with our Affiliate links. That's over. I'm removing all these LinkShare links, I'm really fed up. Thanks Anne.

  3. #3
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    Yep, seeing the same thing. Was just talking to the chat lady:

    you: Just had a question. I found this site via another site. If i purchase something, will that site get credit or how does that work?
    Amy: We get credit for it

  4. #4
    Mama in Charge Anne's Avatar
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    "I'm removing all these LinkShare links, I'm really fed up"

    Zeus, I don't really think this is a "Linkshare issue," rather a "Live Help" issue... It probably would be a good idea, though, for the networks to have something in place to stop this sort of thing , because when merchants do this, Linkshare ( and other networks who have merchants participating ) are losing commissions as well.

  5. #5
    Outsourced Program Manager tmartini's Avatar
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    I just emailed both affiliate managers. We'll see if they have the guts to own up to what's being done and fix it. Otherwise I'll be dropping these losers! I've only earned $61 in commission combined from these two this year and I've got lots of merchants to take their place.

    -- Todd
    Todd Martini
    Digital Marketing Manager
    Jones Soda Co.
    Follow Me on Twitter

  6. #6
    15 years and counting
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    Zeus, I don't really think this is a "Linkshare issue," rather a "Live Help" issue
    I know, Anne. It's just an excuse to get out of LS as fast as I can. LinkShare should took care of that by educating their merchants but they are too busy...
    I saw an EPC drop with Personal Creations for Mother's Day. I'm not surprised anymore.

  7. #7
    notary sojac Herb ԿԬ's Avatar
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    Angry
    Quote Originally Posted by tmartini
    I just emailed both affiliate managers. We'll see if they have the guts to own up to what's being done and fix it. Otherwise I'll be dropping these losers! I've only earned $61 in commission combined from these two this year and I've got lots of merchants to take their place.

    -- Todd
    yes, let's follow this all the way. I never bought into one, but did the other. if they are running this diversion device I want out.

  8. #8
    Newbie at tooting my own horn M_Diddy's Avatar
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    I tried....but couldnt get an answer....see below

    Josh: Welcome to Personal Creations' live chat service. My name is Josh, I am here to help you find what you're looking for, answer questions, and tell you about special promotions and discounts.
    Josh: Hello!
    you: Whats doin sexy
    Josh: Are you shopping for something in particular?
    you: Yeah...I want a bench with my name on it
    you: Stumpy
    you: that I can play with all the pretty letters
    you: I picked it out and I was just checking out how much cash back I can get from the loyalty site I came from
    you: You there Sparky?
    Josh: It would be my pleasure to process your order for you here in chat to insure maximum savings and a speedy and accurate check out. Just list the item numbers or item names, quantities & personalization (please specify if you would like the gold ribbon gift box or greeting card) when you are ready.
    you: Josh hosh bo posh bananafana mo mosh
    you: yeah yeah yeah you know the song
    you: anyway
    Josh: Is there anything else I can assist you with today?
    you: I just asked
    you: If I use your coupon
    you: Do I still get credit
    you: from the fargain bargain mailing list
    you: its a loyalty thingamagjig
    you: aparantly i am gonna get some of my hash back
    you: oops so meant cash
    you: I have big fingers
    you: Jack?
    you: you with me?
    you: It feels like I have fallen and cant get up
    you: Hello?
    Josh: I'm sorry, I'm not understanding your question
    you: Jonathon....I am waiting
    you: well
    Josh: Could you repeat that please?
    you: I came from a website that I think puts a cookie and gets credit if I buy something
    you: with that credit...I get a portion of my money back
    you: I think its called Affiliate Marketing
    you: So I paid like 18 bucks to become part of this mailing list thing while I was shopping in the mall
    you: Some guy named Farhads Fargain Bargain mailing list
    you: so it says...shop at 1000's of stores
    you: and we will send you a check
    you: So....I am browsing through the email and it says I can make my own stool
    you: with my name on it
    Josh: You might want to call customer service for further information about that.
    you: and I am like....how cool is that
    you: I wanna buy
    you: but will I get the credit?
    Josh: I'm not sure if you would get credit, You might want to call customer service for further information

  9. #9
    Mama in Charge Anne's Avatar
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    The Improvements Personal Shopper will join the chat now!
    You are now chatting with 'Renauda'.

    Renauda: Welcome to the ImprovementsCatalog.com live chat service! My name is Renauda; I am a live product specialist and your personal shopping assistant. I can answer questions about our products and tell you about current specials. What items are you interested in today?

    you: i wanted to buy something but I was referred by a website

    Renauda: I can place your order here in chat would you like to do that today?

    you: To get the discount, you mean I have to place the order in the chat window?
    Renauda: By placing your order with me today I will include (Click here) a Free Ivory Switch Cover...! (paintable)

    you: So I can't use the cart?

    Renauda: No not if you would like the free gift

    you: I can't get the free gift unless I place my order?
    you: in this window?

    Renauda: Correct

    you: Thanks, I would rather use the cart

    Renauda: Thanks for shopping at ImprovementsCatalog.com. I'd be happy to assist you with your next visit! In order to better serve you, please take a moment to fill out the post chat survey after closing this window. We appreciate your feedback

    Thanks again for chatting with the Improvements Catalog Personal Shopper!

    (non applicable lines omitted)

  10. #10
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    you: So I can't use the cart?

    Renauda: No not if you would like the free gift
    This is not acceptable! Affiliates make the effort to get the customer and the merchant snatches him/her! While we're discussing the subject I think that all networks should not allow merchants to create affiliate links that lead to a a page with a pop-up ad. I think that pop-ups turn customers off.

  11. #11
    Defender of Truth, Justice and the Affiliate Way
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    If Merchants are going to run the commissionable live chat on traffic driven by affiliates, then they need to pay BOTH. Both factored into the sale (well live chat may or may not have assisted in closing the sale...but the customer is there because of the affiliate). If they aren't willing to pay both, then they need to suppress the live chat from affiliate traffic.

  12. #12
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    this is just a variation of a "call an 800 number to order". it is meant to grab the commish away from us.

    i posted earlier another LS merchant putting up essentially a "we are under construction, call this number to order". the problem is, that message appears only in affiliate links. when you go to their website directly, their website is very much alive. and since they're probably lurking here to spot the spotters, it took only a few hours for them to correct it since i posted.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kellie aka Ms. B
    If Merchants are going to run the commissionable live chat on traffic driven by affiliates, then they need to pay BOTH. Both factored into the sale (well live chat may or may not have assisted in closing the sale...but the customer is there because of the affiliate). If they aren't willing to pay both, then they need to suppress the live chat from affiliate traffic.
    Yes, wouldn't that be nice. I recently noticed that the skinstore.com over at cj now has live chat that has been extended until 10:00 PM and their 1-800 phone customer service has been extended until 11:00 PM.
    Last edited by Infoseeker; May 18th, 2005 at 10:06 PM.

  14. #14
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    one lead-paying merchant at cj has two sections in their application page.

    the top section contains a big call-an-800-number, obscuring the application form below. this is where they direct the affiliate links.

    on the other hand, if you came from another page on their site, you will be directed straight to the application section and you won't see the call-800 above it.

    and here's what? you can't put an affiliate link straight to the application, nor to another page, only to the 800 number section.

    these guys are intentionally doing that so they won't have to give us the commish.


    i suggest a "Hall of Shame" here in ABW, so affiliates can avoid the suckers.

  15. #15
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    I'm dropping both programs as soon as I log off of here. I'll email the merchants and tell them why plus voice a complaint to Linkshare.

  16. #16
    Mama in Charge Anne's Avatar
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    The application the Skin Store has is different. It is fine to have customer service handy to help the customers find stuff they need.

    The application in question a specific company that merchants hire and their main objective is to get people to order IN the window by aggressively serving pop ups and offering free gifts and discounts to entice the shopper to avoid the cart ( and thus you lose commission).

  17. #17
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    Kellie aka Ms. B wrote:
    If Merchants are going to run the commissionable live chat on traffic driven by affiliates, then they need to pay BOTH.
    Question is, do compaies like LS CJ etc. have the ability to measure sales conducted by live chat??

    marcelle

  18. #18
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    dag nabbit. another thing I have NOT been testing for....

  19. #19
    Outsourced Program Manager tmartini's Avatar
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    Looking for a replacement for Personal Creations. Anyone work with Personalization Mall on Linkshare?
    Todd Martini
    Digital Marketing Manager
    Jones Soda Co.
    Follow Me on Twitter

  20. #20
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Overstock of course remembers the last item you looked at and didn't buy. Next time on their site it popups up with a buy me reminder. You have to close it to get it out of your face. Click on a few product links and up comes the Live Chat application. They say these don't negate affiliate cookies or sales commissions. Is this true, or do all these popup service apps get manned by outside commission hawks??
    Webmaster's... Mike and Charlie

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

  21. #21
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    I'd give Personal Creations a chance to address the issue before I remove any links

    This issue was addressed back in October... we need to have the networks address it at some point

  22. #22
    ABW Ambassador
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anne
    It is fine to have customer service handy to help the customers find stuff they need.
    REQUIRING one to call an 800 number to buy is not a customer service. it is to avoid the cart where we can get the commish.

    this is the same as livechat. they require you NOT to use the cart. the difference however is that they are paying the commish anyway but not to us. so, livechat is acting more like a parasite instead of a customer service.

  23. #23
    Full Member heisje's Avatar
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    .

    whoever gets a reply from the AMs, please let us know here.
    but a zero tolerance policy in such cases is best.


    heisje


    .
    Last edited by heisje; May 19th, 2005 at 03:04 AM.

  24. #24
    A Real *and* Darn Cool Member! lstolze's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tmartini
    Looking for a replacement for Personal Creations. Anyone work with Personalization Mall on Linkshare?
    Hey Todd, Personalization Mall is pretty good, and very friendly and helpful. They convert okay for me - but they aren't a big part of my marketing efforts. Just not something I aggressively push, but I would suggest giving them a run. Test purchases have always been positive too.

    I'm really bummed by this! At Christmas I pushed Personal Creations and no matter how hard I pushed (on a PR 4 page even), I didn't see the sales I expected. I thought it was just me, but now I wonder...? I will have to reconsider promoting them - very strongly.

    ~Lisa~
    ~Lisa - Brilliant Mastermind, or Nut? You decide!

  25. #25
    A Real *and* Darn Cool Member! lstolze's Avatar
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    Just got all the way to the CC info section of a purchase on Personal Creations. I didn't get jumped into chat. However, I noticed at the bottom of the page:
    "Prefer to shop by phone? Call 1.800.326.6626 (mention code 3811EM)"

    I'm curious about that....what is the code for?? If I'm a customer and I see that, I might think "Hmmm....I wonder what special discount I'll get for giving that code? I'm gonna call in my order! " Meanwhile, I get $0 commish.... Can anyone shed light on this?
    ~Lisa - Brilliant Mastermind, or Nut? You decide!

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