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  1. #1
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Question When you apply for a datafeed...
    Question to affiliates: when you apply for a datafeed, what do you mean?

    I mean, it's been clear from past discussions that when an affiliate applies to join a program, that doesn't necessarily mean he/she will get active with it right away... Now, one would think that when an affiliate applies for a datafeed, that does mean that they are getting ready to feature your products at their website(s). Alas! Regardless of how attractive you make the activation offer for those that are approved to access your datafeed, still (!) 60% don't ever get to that datafeed......

    So what do you mean when you apply for a datafeed?

    Many thanks in advance for your feedback.

    Geno

  2. #2
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    In MY case when I apply for a datafeed I am near the start of a fairly lengthy process - I probably have my basic template and page generator functioning; now with the datafeed I need to match the fields with my display variables and start tuning the page appearance.

    Next I setup the site or subsite and prepare the automation links that will now maintain this new addition. Once it has gone through several weekly automatic upgrades, I will begin to notify the search engines to take a look. There is a several week gap before they pay much attention and a several month gap before they fully index my new effort and I start getting much traffic.

    So, in short, once I start getting your datafeed, you and I have a substantial wait - I am working on my new additions for this coming Christmas now.

    Charles

  3. #3
    Member Chocolate_Chicken's Avatar
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    "one would think that when an affiliate applies for a datafeed, that does mean that they are getting ready to feature your products at their website(s). "

    And when they download the feed, and find that it contains multiple items with identical names, it either gets sent to the bottom of the to-do pile, or straight to the trash bin.

  4. #4
    Crazy Cat Lady Heidi's Avatar
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    i like to have access to the datafeeds, i may or may not ever get around to putting them up but when i am in need, i turn to the feeds i have access to before hunting for new datafeeds to get access to.
    Heidi
    "Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price to make them come true"

  5. #5
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    When I create a website, I tend to take a while. I like to have everything I need in order to get build the site, test it, and get ready for launch. I've run into the problem in the past where I ask for a feed of some kind and the affiliate manager thinks that means that I'm ready to launch that week. It doesn't always. Rest assured, when I do launch, the site will be good and it'll make some $$$.

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador Paul_Ward's Avatar
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    A datafeed is a load of links to product pages ready made for me. I've never used all of a feed and often heavily edit it to make it different to the others who get it.

    There's no point in using a feed to produce instant pages like everyone else's - that doesn't work.

    Also the reality of a datafeed can be very different to what you expect, I've had some that would be so much work to use that I just don't bother.

    Usually I will apply for a feed when I'm ready to use it, but if it's ugly or clunky I put my efforts elsewhere. Sometimes a feed is so clean and elegant and fits so well with my sites that I make whole new sections to take advantage of it.

    I also know that I do many things in AM totally different to most people, so this has to be taken with a pinch of Natrium Muriate.

  7. #7
    Moderator BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    It could also be that someone is wanting a datafeed because they have never used one before - but - they want to learn how to use one and they need one to practice on.

    It may take them a while to learn how to use a feed and templates, php, mysql, and etc. if they have no knowledge of this at all.

    However, once they do learn to use it they will probably put the feed out that they practiced and learned with because the merchant was nice enough to let them have a feed to learn with.

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  8. #8
    Marketing Mistress Lectrickitty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BurgerBoy
    It could also be that someone is wanting a datafeed because they have never used one before - but - they want to learn how to use one and they need one to practice on.
    That's me! (jumping up and down, waving hands and arms frantically )

    I've been reading about them, and have given serious thought to downloading one to see what they are and how they can be used.

    Geno, can I play with yours?
    [color=blue]"Those who give up their freedom for a little security deserve neither freedom nor security" - Benjamin Franklin[/color]

  9. #9
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lectrickitty
    Geno, can I play with yours?
    Be my guest!

    Geno

  10. #10
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Geno, I haven't applied for your datafeed yet.

    I intend to do so in the not so distant future
    ~Rhia7 -- Remember the 7
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  11. #11
    ABW Veteran Mr. Sal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geno - RussianLegacy
    Question to affiliates: when you apply for a datafeed, what do you mean?





    Geno,

    I'm going to give you my whole imput of what do I mean if and when I decide to apply for a data feed on SAS.

    I mean, it's been clear from past discussions that when an affiliate applies to join a program, that doesn't necessarily mean he/she will get active with it away...
    Not necessarily my case, about 90% of the time that I decide to apply to join a new program, it's because I am ready to get those links at that moment, not a few days later.
    Now, one would think that when an affiliate applies for a datafeed, that does mean that they are getting ready to feature your products at their website(s)
    I have to agree with you on this one, because once I decide to apply for a datafeed on SAS, it's because Im am ready to put those product pages up as soon as I get approved to download that feed.
    But.
    Regardless of how attractive you make the activation offer for those that are approved to access your datafeed, still (!) 60% don't ever get to that datafeed......
    Here is my reason. (Note: This is a general reply to your question, and have nothing to do with your datafeed)

    While I am on SAS looking for merchants or just looking around, I may find a merchant that get my attention for one reason or another, so after I read their terms and see their creative links and banners and (my reserved ideas) may be a mach for my sites, I may applyfor that merchant at that moment.

    Now, while I like what I see and I get auto approved at that time, it's beside the point.

    There are a lot of good merchants at SAS that have a good program and nice links and banners, even some decent make a page creatives, and they also have a datafeed.

    But, and this is a big BUT.

    Their datafeed sucks!

    As long as they have less than 1000 products on that feed, we can just right click on a SAS page and get that Pipe (|) feed with our User ID already in it, but, if that merchant have over 1000 products, then we have to decide if we want to download a few pages in that same way and format, one at the time, and then join those feed's on our HD to have just one file for that merchant datafeed, or just apply to the merchant for FTP access, and get the whole feed on a zip file, add our User ID# to it and etc, etc.

    And here is when it hit's the fan, at least for me.

    If after I go to all that trouble of applying for an FTP feed and wait to be approved, and after I finally get that feed, and making sure that I replace the User ID with my ID, do a test datafeed run on my HD and make over 1000 product pages to see how they are going to look like live on the net, only to find out that their datafeed sucks the way they're, that merchant may get put at the end of my list, or I just may just ignore their big feed all together and just promote that merchant the old fashion way with links and banners, or just leave what ever I have done for that merchat the way it's at the moment and just move on.

    So what do you mean when you apply for a datafeed?
    Simple!

    When I apply for a datafeed on SAS, it's because I am ready, so my question for any merchant on SAS would be, how good is the datafeed that you supply to your affiliates?

    Sal.
    ...

  12. #12
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    What is included in the datafeed that the merchant sends an affiliate?
    I've seen remarks about "it's good to have a broadband connection." I don't have broadband, I connect via dial-up. I thought the data feed was just a string of code. no? More? What is included?

    After reading Mr. Sal's comments, could it be a possibility that the affiliate feels a bit swamped?
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  13. #13
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    Generally speaking, a datafeed is a text file that is divided up with each line of the text file listing a different inventory item - each row is organized in the same pattern so we can get an automatic way to load it into our pages or database or ...

    Each row will contain items (called fields) like 'description' or 'price' or 'link to item picture' or 'link to merchant's page' or 'catagory/subcatagory'.

    Some merchants I use from CJ have from 100 to 1000 items - these are very small datafeed files especially when they are 'compressed' by CJ/LS... (text files compress to about 10% of there normal size) so these datafeeds are quite practical for a dial-up connection. A databeed like Buy.com or WalMart or Shop.com is in the order of 100's of megabytes and would be pressing a dial-up. Some, like Overstock and now Walmart, divide their datafeed in broad catagories - apparel/DVDs/Home... allowing you to download which you want without having to grab the whole warehouse at once.

    Charles

  14. #14
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by micheck
    Generally speaking, a datafeed is a text file that is divided up with each line of the text file listing a different inventory item - each row is organized in the same pattern so we can get an automatic way to load it into our pages or database or ...

    Each row will contain items (called fields) like 'description' or 'price' or 'link to item picture' or 'link to merchant's page' or 'catagory/subcatagory'.
    Thanks for your explanation.

    If the datafeed is a text file, why do people say it is better handled by a broadband connection vs. dial-up?
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  15. #15
    Crazy Cat Lady Heidi's Avatar
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    Some datafeeds are really HUGE in size, depending upon the merchant and it would take too many hours to download them on dial-up.
    Heidi
    "Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price to make them come true"

  16. #16
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heidi
    Some datafeeds are really HUGE in size, depending upon the merchant and it would take too many hours to download them on dial-up.
    So is the subliminal message: datafeeds are not for dial-up affiliates?
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  17. #17
    Crazy Cat Lady Heidi's Avatar
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    Personally I'd upgrade to broadband but obviously not everyone has that option.
    Heidi
    "Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price to make them come true"

  18. #18
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heidi
    Personally I'd upgrade to broadband but obviously not everyone has that option.
    At the moment I don't have that option
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  19. #19
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    Though still a newbie in the affiliate business, and handcoding a few sites I have,
    I applied for datafeed about six weeks back from a few merchants in SAS. Though a programmer by ex-profession, I wanted to figure out how and when to use the data feed effectively as I was starting to set up the sites. I guess it takes time to figure out the design and implementation of such a data site, and I wanted to take a look at the raw data for field sizes, categories, data integrity etc and compare the various feed quirks from different merchants.

    When do I actually start using the feed? I am still writing some of the scripts and probably end of next month I should be ready will a data fed website. Though the subsequent sites should take shorter turnover time, still some amount of work goes in planning, script modification, testing, fine turing and deployment.

  20. #20
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Xion, first of all, WELCOME to ABW!

    Quote Originally Posted by Xion
    When do I actually start using the feed?
    If I were in your shoes, I'd start right away without wasting time on putting together pages with banners (if that's your other option). From my experience, affiliates working datafeeds have 10x+ better conversion that affiliates that do banners/text links. Now, banners and text links can be great for content sites, but if you're putting together sites to sell stuff, do datafeeds. Especially since you've got the ability to code yourself. That's a BIG advantage!

    Good luck!

    Geno

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geno Prussakov
    Xion, first of all, WELCOME to ABW!


    If I were in your shoes, I'd start right away without wasting time on putting together pages with banners (if that's your other option). From my experience, affiliates working datafeeds have 10x+ better conversion that affiliates that do banners/text links. Now, banners and text links can be great for content sites, but if you're putting together sites to sell stuff, do datafeeds. Especially since you've got the ability to code yourself. That's a BIG advantage!

    Good luck!

    Geno
    Thanks for the info. I get torn between putting up a site quickly (with handcoding and banners) or take a few weeks to get a datafeed site working. I will concentrate with the datafeed - now that you have pointed out the conversion rate.

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