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  1. #1
    ABW Ambassador
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    Hey CJ Merchants
    Why don't you open up an alternative program at SAS? You can stay at CJ and also provide another option to affiliates in partnering with you. It's the smart thing to do.

  2. #2
    Outsourced Program Manager e-Gazer's Avatar
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    Hey there,

    In case you missed it:

    http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread...3&postcount=24


  3. #3
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    Ah perfect, I love smart merchants

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador Akiva's Avatar
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    Two words: duplicate transactions.
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  5. #5
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    How so? Last click gets the sale right? I have merchants thru Performics and get sales even tho they also have a program at CJ.

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador Akiva's Avatar
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    The problem happens with the thank you page pixels. If the merchant displays both network pixels, if there are cookies for both networks, the transaction will get reported to both thus commission being paid twice. Merchants that are running on more than one network, have all their affiliates links pass through a "gateway" which is essentially a program that reads the incoming source of the link (eg CJ, SAS etc.) and includes that information in their session tracking cookie. At checkout, depending on the value in that cookie, a reporting pixel will display for the appropriate network. This can get complicated and can potentially be a reason for lost sales if not implemented correctly. Also many merchants don't have the ability to do such programming as their ecommerce providers (ie Yahoo Store) don't support such functionality.
    Akiva Bergstrom | akiva@affsolutions.com | 718-871-8286

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  7. #7
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    Well then the merchant should make sure it's gets implemented correctly. If a merchant has a program both at CJ and Performics, i throw up Performics links and they are my overall best converting network. I still think it's good for merchants not to tie their own hands and only offer up 1 way in partnering with them. Options are a good thing to have.

  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador Akiva's Avatar
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    Trust, many ecommerce platforms don't support such functionality at all, Yahoo Store for one. The only way to do it would be to have two pixels displaying at every purchase.
    Akiva Bergstrom | akiva@affsolutions.com | 718-871-8286

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  9. #9
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    I agree with TN1 and have several merchants who run parallel programs - including my best ones.

  10. #10
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    Hi guys,

    Akiva thanks for bringing the matter to our attention.

    Isn't the cookie dropped onto the consumer's system at time of clickthru? So wouldn't that mean if the consumer clicks through on a Rugman/CJ link, that the Rugman/CJ affiliate cookie would be dropped, and if the consumer clicked through on an SAS link, that it would be an SAS affiliate cookie dropped?

    Isn't it the cookie that tracks the sale? I understand how confusion might occur at time of order confirmation where both network's tracking pixels co-exist, but my understanding is that the tracking pixel just links the affiliate sale back to a specific order ID.

    Now, I may have this entirely wrong, so Akiva (or anyone else) if you can correct me where I've got it wrong I'd be much obliged.

    I'm interested to know which merchants are running on two networks simultaneously and how they do it without paying out double commissions where it's not supposed to happen.

    Thanks all. I'm really excited about opening up a second channel but obviously have to consider all angles before diving in. Thanks again Akiva for raising the issue.

  11. #11
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    I know the Blair AM is here occasionally and has programs at CJ and Performics. JCWhitney, AutoAnything, Magellans, CompUSA, AE, Art Gazebo, Bargain Outfitters on and on. Lots of CJ merchants are also at Performics with no problems. I think there might be a few CJ merchants at SAS. I think most have no problems.

  12. #12
    Outsourced Program Manager Jorge - SHOPiMAR's Avatar
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    Hi Liz,,

    Good descision.

    Agree with Akiva. Commissions being paid twice could be a problem even with different affiliates since they both still have the cookie set. I briefly ran performics and shareasale and did a few tests with no problem, but saw tracking on both ends occour. Also can cause problems with certain platforms, yahoo and if you do not know who is on both programs at the same time, etc.

    I think the affiliate that joins though cj will not join through SAS or vise verse, but one suggestion would be to only let the affiliates join one program at a time, close monitoring of course.

  13. #13
    Outsourced Program Manager e-Gazer's Avatar
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    Hi again,

    Thanks Jrami.

    Would there still be problems if an Affiliate was joined to my program via both networks but promoted SAS links on one site, and CJ links on another?

    Would the tracking pixels still conflict with one another by both networks tracking one sale? I would think not but want to be sure.

    Thanks,

  14. #14
    Member Chocolate_Chicken's Avatar
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    Considering CJ's current state, I don't think there should be any cause for concern about whether a sale would be simultaneously registered on both networks.

  15. #15
    ABW Ambassador Akiva's Avatar
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    Liz, you are correct that each network link sets it's own cookie. However here's a scenario to illustrate: Consumer John searches the web for a product, clicks onto a website that has a CJ link and clicks it. CJ cookie is set. Browses the merchant and decides not to purchase at that moment. At a later date, be it a few minutes, hours, days or weeks, Consumer John performs a search for the same or similar product. This time clicking on a website that has SAS links. SAS cookie is set. Consumer John makes the purchase. At checkout, both reporting pixels must be displayed thus the transaction is reported to both networks. There is a way how to get around this and that is to have links for both networks pass through a "gateway" which would set a cookie from the merchant domain which will be read at checkout to decide which pixel to display, however this is assuming that it's the same affiliate site that set both cookies. If you have two different affiliates with cookies on one consumer machine, your are OBLIGATED by your contract with each network to report sales for the stated cookie duration in your affiliate program terms. Since you cannot read the CJ or SAS cookie (there is no way to do this), both pixels must be displayed as each affiliate is contractually entitled to the commission. Merchants that do run on different networks most likely are doing the "last click in gets the sale" method and by using their own gateway tracking to identify the network click, are disregarding their obligations to the other network and potentially causing affiliates to lose commission. If they state this in their terms on both networks, then all is fine and dandy, however I don't know any that do.
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  16. #16
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    That's a very rigid view of things Akiva. There are many merchants that run dual programs - many of them have forums here and I doubt they are disregarding their contractual obligations to anyone - and they are surely not causing the loss of earned affiliate commissions. Given a network a choice to allow you (I mean the merchant) to run dual programs or lose your business and they will allow dual. The exception is LinkShare that requires exclusivity in their merchant deals - but this is a business decision, not one based on ethics, legality or technology challenges faced in dual program situations.

  17. #17
    ABW Ambassador Akiva's Avatar
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    Donuts,

    Just because networks don't bind you to exclusivity doesn't mean that running dual programs isn't going to cause problems with dual reporting. Here's why. Say a CJ merchant offers a 120 day cookie. This merchant has a program on SAS offering a 120 day cookie too. When a consumer clicks on a CJ link, you are contractually obligated to report any sales that are a result of that cookie for 120 days. If you don't for whatever reason, you are in breach of that agreement to both the network and the affiliate. The only time you are not in breach, is when another affiliate link is clicked FROM THAT NETWORK thus creating a new 120 day cookie for the other affiliate. So in this instance, if a merchant chooses to show the SAS pixel and not the CJ pixel (or vice versa) and it is within the 120 day timeframe for the CJ cookie, you are in violation of your contract with CJ and the CJ affiliate (publisher) that's in that cookie. It's the same if the merchant chooses to show the CJ cookie and not the SAS cookie.

    It's pretty simple to me.
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  18. #18
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    Let's say I click a link to Merchant X on CJ with a 120 day cookie. A week later I click a link to Merchant X on CJ again, that 120 cookie cycle starts all over. Just as I would click a link to Merchant X but this time thru SAS. What if someone comes to my site, clicks a link to Essestial Apparel, sets a cookie but doesn't buy anything. A week later they find Essential Apparel thru another affiliate, clicks the link, buys something. You're not obligated to pay both of us, just whoever set the last cookie.

    Last click gets the sale and that clicks starts the cookie cycle all over again. I have hundreds and hundreds of merchants throughout my sites and lots of them have more than 1 program and I don't ever remember having a problem with any of them. Merchants should be encouraged to open up more than 1 avenue to affiliates in working with them. Let them decide thru what network they want to partner with you.

  19. #19
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    Akiva,

    Then in your view does CJ and SAS require exclusivity as well?

    It is my view that contracts are negotiable and that a merchant can work with CJ or SAS and be allowed to operate in the manner you say they forbid. Further, I know of many that do exactly what you say is forbidden - and they do it with CJ's full knowledge and cooperation.

    Personally, regarding who deserves and has earned the commission, I see no difference between "last referrer only is the one that gets paid" whether two (or more) affiliates came through tracking systems from the same network -or- from separate networks.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by RugmanAM
    but my understanding is that the tracking pixel just links the affiliate sale back to a specific order ID.
    I have to side with Akiva on this issue.

    As I understand it, the clickthrough cookie ties your click to your particular computer.

    Then, when an order is completed, the sale will trigger a search for the last cookie in your computer.

    This is straightforward if the merchant is on one network only, cj for example, as the sale will trigger a search for the last cj cookie. But when you have two networks, it gets complicated.

    It is doable, yes, but it is prone to more errors.

  21. #21
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    So, how do merchants that are with two networks not pay dual commissions? Do they run checks on all sales? Seems like a lot of work if it isn't set to run automatically. They would have to go in manually and reverse out the sales.

  22. #22
    Internet Cowboy
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    Easily solved...dump CJ for SAS. Commissions will be paid, parasites will be axed and all is good. A merchant with an established affiliate base will be found once they move.
    Think of all the publishers out there who refuse to work with CJ.


  23. #23
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kip
    So, how do merchants that are with two networks not pay dual commissions? Do they run checks on all sales? Seems like a lot of work if it isn't set to run automatically. They would have to go in manually and reverse out the sales.
    Akiva and WayToGo are saying the merchant would not have the legal right to manually reverse the sales either...

    And I differ with their views.

  24. #24
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    I have a recent post showing that WalterDrake (at CJ) deducted me for sales that I was never paid on in the first place.

    Turns out that WalterDrake (at Performics) should have been deducted.

    So Akiva's scenario does happen...

    But I complained to CJ. They said they showed WalterDrake (at CJ) how to fix the problem... and I haven't had a reversal since...

    So there's is some kind of solution

  25. #25
    ABW Ambassador Akiva's Avatar
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    Back from a restful weekend...

    There is a solution, however it is highly technical and involves modification to the program terms on both networks. As I said before many merchants don't have the know-how or their ecommerce system can't handle the necessary modifications to make it work correctly. I know it's done by many, but that doesn't mean it's done the way it should be so that nobody gets screwed.
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