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  1. #1
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    Yet another way to rob our commissions
    One of the best lessons I've learned at ABW is to not simply check links to make sure they work, but to occasionally follow the order process all the way thru to see if the merchant throws any curve balls along the way in the ordering process.

    Below (or attached) is the confirmation page I just got from a merchant.

    It says:

    Billy did a LOT of work to attract a qualified customer...

    Sent the customer off to the merchant naively believing the merchant would follow the spirit of the affiliate agreement

    Only to have the merchant tell the customer that from now on, they want the customer to avoid Billy and start shopping at a better partner

    Code:
    http://home.shopperdiscountsandrewards.com/
    because they will give you cash back, free shipping, and the guaranteed lowest prices - unlike Billy, who can only post the banners the merchant makes available to him

    The screen shot is too large to upload, but you can view it here:

    http://home.earthlink.net/~bknoblach...gDiscounts.gif

    aargh!!!
    Last edited by loxly; March 24th, 2006 at 04:58 PM. Reason: made the link not clickable so that they don't get any seo from here.

  2. #2
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    It's bad enough they don't want me to get any FUTURE sales,

    but I obviosly clicked the link that said "No-Not Friggin Interested"

    and got the following page that said "Please CALL in your order - we don't think we've scre*ed Billy out of enough commissions yet!!
    Attached Images Attached Images

  3. #3
    Full Member
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    January 27th, 2005
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    Oh my god, how creepy is that???

  4. #4
    Member nLoBushwack's Avatar
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    May 23rd, 2005
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    .... so call them :0)

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador
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    I just went thru the checkout process all the way to the point where I hit the submit order button and didn't see any of that. Pick an item and quantity, added it to cart, view cart, then hit checkout. Then filled in the usual info. Or does all that come after you submit your order?

  6. #6
    15 years and counting
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    "While we process your order, here's a special reward from a preferred partner of Walter Drake."

    You have now a few merchants to avoid:
    Best Buy
    Office Depot
    Circuit City
    Ritz
    Dell
    KB Toys
    Hichory Farms
    ... and Walter Drake.

    These people are unreal, and some would like us to have respect for these crooks and the networks monetizing them...

  7. #7
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    Trust... it was the confirmation page... I placed an order (or tried to place an order) for a dozen s

  8. #8
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quite a few merchants use that. It seems pretty sleazy to me.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  9. #9
    Troll Killer and best Snooper!
    I decide when the pigs fly!
    Rhea's Avatar
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    What a bunch of miserable, low-life creeps. Thanks for the info Billy. I'm dumping them. Not only that but I won't be buying anything from them ever again.

    I wonder if CJ knows they're doing this. (I wonder if CJ cares.)

  10. #10
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    webloyalty.com is the parent company and their revenue exceeded $100 million in 2005...
    http://www.webloyalty.com/about-cust...yalty-revenue/

    privacy policy:
    http://home.shopperdiscountsandrewar...sdrprivacy.asp
    "Surveys

    We may also provide survey questionnaires and track Member traffic patterns, benefit usage and preferences in a personally identifiable manner, in order to better service your Membership, personalize your service and develop additional benefits that will be of interest to you.

    Any information gathered from click data, benefit usage, surveys, preferences, log files, cookies and other ways you interact with our company is aimed at servicing your Membership, helping us develop the design and layout of the site, and determining additional benefits and offers that may (or may not) be of value to Members. Any information gathered from claim forms is used to service your claims."

    love the may (or may not) be of value to members...

  11. #11

  12. #12
    15 years and counting
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    And we wonder why the networks are not tracking properly or why we're seeing less and less commissions. Crooks are waiting on line to steal them.

    We had that kind of problem at the check out before with a cie selling computer parts on BeFree, now on LS.

  13. #13
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
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    Another valued CJ merchant screwing affiliates. Will wonders never cease?
    Comments are opinion unless otherwise noted. Remember, pillage first. Then burn. Half of all people in the world have IQs under 100. You best learn to trust ol' SSanf!

  14. #14
    Marketing Mistress Lectrickitty's Avatar
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    They must think we are stupid...

    I did a test buy and no commission showed up. They required that I send them a copy of the transaction before they would credit my commission. I ask them a very simple question... "how can I be sure that I get my commissions from them in the future?"

    Their answer: "always print out a receipt so you can prove the purchase" WHAT??? I can just picture the notices on my sites... "All customers should print a receipt for any purchase made thru links from this site... please email a copy of your receipt to me at dumb-affiliate@mysite.com" Then I could go into detail explaining to my customers that some companies try to steal my commission unless I can prove the purchase was made. Customers would be lining up to buy from me!
    [color=blue]"Those who give up their freedom for a little security deserve neither freedom nor security" - Benjamin Franklin[/color]

  15. #15
    ABW Ambassador
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    That is sneaky for a merchant to do.

    To what Lectrickitty is saying, reminds me of LS Transaction Inquiry:

    "LinkShare's Transaction Inquiry forum allows you to submit information about sales referred by your site that do not appear credited in your reports."

    And a long time ago I asked how the hell am I supposed to know that? A sale showing up in the reports is the only way I know that someone bought something thru my site.

  16. #16
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    I did a test buy and no commission showed up.
    THAT'S the reason I did the original test sale. Usual amount of clicks, but not a single sale for WD for a week.

    FYI, my test sale didn't show up either - CJ still showing zero sales for this merchant

  17. #17
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    Screwing affs, yes. But really screwing consumers HARD!

    The scam, in plain english, is this:
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Merchant (who the consumer JUST bought from) agrees to pass along credit card and personal information to WebLoyalty.

    Having the credit card info means WebLoyalty doesn't have to prompt the consumer for it - hiding the fact that they're tricking people into signing up for a $10 a month service to be sent offers (coupons and discounts) that should be free (and are available for free everywhere already) anyhow.

    In return for sharing the consumer's credit card info, WebLoyalty pays the merchant a portion of the scammed monthly fees.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Aside from these profits, Webloyalty then has all the consumer personally identifiable data (PID) that it needs to broker it's way to more related deals.

    It's not about selling products, or loyalty, or conversion rates or marketing saavy - it's about seizing and monetizing PID.

    Along the way, screwing affiliates is just gravy... and the merchant believes this service is increasing customer loyalty. They'll continue believing that until the FTC knocks on their door.

    As identify theft grows, we need PID cops to police transfers, like they do funds transfers and transportation of goods. And consumers need PID banks - parties who are accountable for storing and safeguarding our PID. If a marketing company wants a piece of my PID, they should get my permission EVERY time, through my PID bank who monitors their use of my data, and not be allowed to retain my data or use it for anything other than it's approved (by me!) use and only for the approved (by me) duration of time.

  18. #18
    Troll Killer and best Snooper!
    I decide when the pigs fly!
    Rhea's Avatar
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    And while we're having this conversation, has anyone checked out Miles Kimball? I imagine they're playing the same short-sighted, greedy game.

    I just expired Walter Drake and sent the AM an email explaining why I've done so. Her name is Kristy Tamm, ktamm@mileskimball.com.

  19. #19
    ABW Ambassador
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    I remember webloyalty from another thread:
    http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread...ght=Webloyalty

    About allposters which relates to a thread about buying art online any many said they have bought from allposters with no problem. There is something I want to buy from them, will be on the lookout for it.

    edit to add: I just called to ask about it, called 2 different times to talk to different people to see what answer I would get. I told them I just want to buy a print and nothing else. Don't want to be signed up with anything and that i read about Reservations Rewards/Webloyalty and some problems and was told that is something you need to sign up for.

  20. #20
    ABW Ambassador mailman's Avatar
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    "Their answer: "always print out a receipt so you can prove the purchase" WHAT??? I can just picture the notices on my sites... "All customers should print a receipt for any purchase made thru links from this site... please email a copy of your receipt to me at dumb-affiliate@mysite.com" Then I could go into detail explaining to my customers that some companies try to steal my commission unless I can prove the purchase was made. Customers would be lining up to buy from me! "
    I suggested this a couple of years ago and I still believe that this is the only way we can win.
    I think if it is worded properly customers wouldn't mind filling out a receipt. Something like this.
    To our Valued Customers.
    In an effort to provide you with excellent customer service we ask that you take the time to fill out a receipt for your purchases. This will insure that your order has been placed with said merchant. It will also provide us with a record for commission's due from your purchase.
    Thanks for your time and please continue supporting our many fine Merchants!
    Someone here could probably due a better job of wording this.

  21. #21
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Thanks Billy and Donuts for zeroing in on the potential criminal activity of this organization, their merchants and AM's. I participate in a phone conversation with these wanks, pitching one of my ecommerce clients back in 2004, hyping their loyality return shopper crapolla. They wanted their script put back on the order confirmation page. I shock my client friends by yelling obsenities at them on the phone and threatened them with FTC -FBI and local AG cybercrime unit investigations. We then phoned and sent a registered letter to the hosted Cart company (Americart) demanding they cannot automatically Opt-In a hundred thousand + merchants into the WebLoyality program.

    Automatically passing the complete customer information, including the CC # and pin number to a 3rd party marketing firm, without upfront expressed consent from customer, was deemed illegal by his attorney. It's about time the FTC and the CT Attorney Generals office takes this Adwhore loyality operation, their networks and the participating merchants to court. The Gratis privacy peddling case in front of Spitzer needs additional company and media exposure. This DMA/IAB sponsored crap has been going on too long killing off legit affiliates income.

    We discussed this in 2004 ... http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread.php?t=15895 and they were in the consumer ripp off operation back in 2003 http://www2.unplannedthought.com:808...am_artists.php This Super affiliate, and their network enablers, need to do some serious jail time. I see the AM firm in the Restaurant.com thread use this operation to the max to pad their own pockets.

    Google the buggers ... http://www.google.com/search?sourcei...&q=webloyality

    Notice the last entry on the first page. An affiliate front site tied into this one and MetaRewards ...


    ABWers report this one and their merchants at http://www.ic3.gov/
    Last edited by ecomcity; March 25th, 2006 at 03:53 PM.
    Webmaster's... Mike and Charlie

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

  22. #22
    More Cheesier Than Ever Cheesehead's Avatar
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    Just gave them the "expire".
    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

  23. #23
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    Good intentions, bad idea. For most affiliates our site visitors aren't our customers (even tho i consider them my customers, but not in a merchant sense) and providing excellent customer service is what the merchant is supposed to do. Also what you're suggesting gets in the natural flow of checkout. Most people just want to checkout as quickly as possible and don't want to fill out any receipt for you. And asking that "to insure your order is placed with said merchant" might throw some doubt up, get them thinking that there might be some sort of problem, hence this extra step of you wanting them to fill out a receipt. Could kill the order right there. Also most don't know and don't care about what we do and our commissions.

  24. #24
    ABW Ambassador mailman's Avatar
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    I understand TrustNo1. I have been in the retail industry for over 40 years and you are right about standing in line at the checkout. That is one of the reasons why some retailers have introduced the self checkout. It's not just to provide fast service but also to cut front end costs. One cashier can monitor four self checkouts. I also believe that online customers are differant in that they check out more merchants before they decide to buy.
    They are your customers as your site introduced them to that merchant! Do you not want them to return? Showing them that you care about their purchase's gives you some credibility. It's called in the industry "cultivating a customer base" If they are happy ,they will return to your site.

  25. #25
    ABW Ambassador
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    "They are your customers as your site introduced them to that merchant! Do you not want them to return? Showing them that you care about their purchase's gives you some credibility. "

    Like I mentioned, my customers but in a different way. Showing care about their purchases is more on the merchant's end. They way you want to do it will get people thinking there is something wrong plus as a shopper I would be thinking who are you to want to know that? I'm buying from the merchant not you. You can start a poll if you like and I think you would get the same response. Ask other affiliates as a shopper would you be willing to do what you are suggesting.

    "That is one of the reasons why some retailers have introduced the self checkout. It's not just to provide fast service but also to cut front end costs."

    I actually don't like that. There is a grocery store where I live that does that. I like to load the stuff up on the belt but I want them to scan it on thru. There is another grocery story where they take the stuff out of the cart for you and then scan it. I like that or putting it on the belt myself like most places do. I don't go there to do their job for them

    Just an example of what you want. Let's say I go to your affiliate site, click over to a merchant and want to buy something. You wanting that info to "insure the sale" to me introduces doubt about the merchant. You don't want to do that.

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