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  1. #1
    ABW Ambassador MoneyBusiness's Avatar
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    Trust is a Tricky Thing
    Ok, I'm curious:

    Everyone that deals with CJ has to have some level of trust, right? What do you do to not drive yourself crazy that things are tracking well, or not well? I personally try to stay as busy as possible with other projects, but it always sneaks back into my head...

    Reason I ask is b/c (for one merchant) I can have at least one sale a day for like 10 days straight (with more than one on several occasions). Then, it completely dries up for like 10 days (is that normal?). It's during these days that I keep second guessing my landing pages, my links, tracking, you name it...

    It's a lot easier now, especially since I've tested their lead tracking about 4 times so far (tracked all 4 times). But give the imagination an inch, and it'll take you for a ride..know what I mean?

    Do you see fluctuations like these? How do you cope? Or have you all gone bald..

  2. #2
    Internet Cowboy
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    Make informed choices of your merchants, pick only the finest lead merchants! Plan your work and work your plan. Worry only about the things you can control, then fix them so you don't have to worry about them any longer. Talk to Michael Coley about the possibilities of going several days without a single sale.
    You should be good to go!

  3. #3
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    It really helps if you have more business than that. When you're dealing with a very low volume event like that, you're going to see some really weird things.

    I have many merchants where I have over 100 sales a day, and it's far more steady. Still, it's amazing how many tracking problems I find. Just a week ago, one of those merchants (on another network) stopped reporting for about a 30 hour period. After I contacted them, they resent their batches for those two days and everything is right now. I probably see something like this at least once a month.

    Would I have been able to identify that if I normally just got one sale a day? Nope.

    Do merchants resend everything when there are problems, or do they just research for the affiliates who complain? Most usually resend everything, but not always.

    Would merchants catch these problems if the large affiliates didn't notice them and complain? Some might. Most probably wouldn't. It's amazing how hard it is to convince some merchants that they have a problem. I think that's largely because of the number of incorrect complaints they receive from smaller affiliates who (not to pick on you) "normally get one sale a day, but haven't had a sale in three days". (That should happen statistically. What you described is far less likely but still might happen depending on other factors.)

    Is there anything that can be done? The networks really need to monitor sales much more closely. Most individual affiliates don't have access to enough data to detect tracking problems. Most merchants only have a few affiliates who generate enough sales that they can accurately see the problems. But the networks have access to all affiliate sales, so they should be able to easily see the problems.
    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

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador MoneyBusiness's Avatar
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    Yeah, I kind of figured that. I know with such a small number of merchants there will be all kind of weird things going on. I suppose when those sales get into double/triple digits a day (across the board), fluctuations won't look as horrible.

    Well, that's what I've been doing in the meantime (building more sites), just so I don't drive myself crazy..

    I feel bad for affiliate managers who have to deal with the small time operators (like myself). I think I've left him alone as best as can be (aside from getting help for other matters). I can only imagine what they have to deal with on a daily basis.. =X

    Thanks for your input guys!

  5. #5
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Network stats administrators asleep at the wheel plague this indusry. I can remember major merchants like The Outpost at LS getting by without reporting one sale for months at a time. Creatives like search apps never setting tracking cookies and merchant batch reporting errors that go on for months. This is the result of the network's advertising mindset. That mindset completely distances the sales process from the ad serving process.
    Webmaster's... Mike and Charlie

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

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador MoneyBusiness's Avatar
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    Hmmm, sounds like it may be a step for the better these days, compared to those?

    I don't think I could work with a merchant that didn't report sales for more than a couple weeks at a time. Would drive me bonkers...

  7. #7
    ABW Ambassador mailman's Avatar
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    Michael Coley. You seem to be very knowledgeable when it comes to CJ and perhaps you could answer my question re :tracking.
    This is the code when I click on one merchant on my site.
    www.perfumeemporium.com/index.cfm?source=9&AID=MY[/url] PID NO&PID=2008943
    I can see my PID No there.

    www.fragrancex.com/index.html?source=cjx[/url]
    This is another merchant with no PID no.
    Here is another.
    www.perfumania.com/default.aspx[/url]
    I see nothing here,no PID

    Does this mean I am sending clicks over without being given credit?
    Should they not all be the same as the first?
    Thanks Michael.

  8. #8
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    No, it doesn't matter whether you see your PID or not. Most CJ merchants track using network cookies. The cookie is set on the network when customers click through your link. Then, if they buy something, an order tracking pixel (hosted on the network) is shown in the shopping cart and if your cookie is there you get credit. The merchant doesn't even need to know your PID.

    That's for network cookies. If the merchant does their own tracking and sends batches, they need to track it on their end. But even with that, you might not see your PID in the landing page. They may direct to a page like: merchantsite.com/affiliatetracking.php?PID=12345&AID=23456&redir=/index.php which will log your PID and set a cookie, then redirect to merchantsite.com/index.php. You never see the first part (unless you're watching really, really close).
    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
    ABW Ambassador mailman's Avatar
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    Thanks Michael. And last 10,000 impressions,70 clicks and one sale.
    Would this be the norm? Do impressions mean visitors to your site?

  10. #10
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
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    I bet your "impressions" are how many images are shown. If you have a lot of images on a page, that page will generate a lot of impressions.
    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!

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador mailman's Avatar
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    SSanf. I have a small logal,some google ads ,text and some banners on my home page?

  12. #12
    15 years and counting
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    Mailman - 70 clicks and one sale.
    Would this be the norm? Do impressions mean visitors to your site?
    70 clicks, one sale. That's above the average for the average affiliate. You can do better, but you really need to be on top of your business.
    "impressions mean visitors" impressions mean traffic, traffic doesn't mean visitors, visitors doesn't mean customers...
    Bots are triggering impressions and many bots are not worth your bandwidth cost.

  13. #13
    ABW Ambassador MoneyBusiness's Avatar
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    A good example of this is one of my landing pages. On that page, I have 3 of the exact same links embedded in there.

    In my stats the other day, I had about 100 unique visitors to that page. Not taking into account other pageviews, the 100 visitors, plus the 3 links amounts to roughly 300 impressions.

    To make things a bit more confusing, each one of those visitors can load that particular page more than once (such as clicking through and then clicking back), which will increase your impressions.

    That's my take on it.

  14. #14
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I would think 1/70 would be a little below average. I see many touting 1/100, but usually as a minimum performance that they expect rather than an average. That's not bad with untargeted traffic, but I would expect 1/10 or better with most targeted traffic. I see 1/5, 1/4, 1/3, and even 1/2 with highly targted traffic and the right merchants.
    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

  15. #15
    15 years and counting
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    The best I'm doing is 1/5, with no incentive but targeted traffic for the right merchant. I know I should use coupons but it's not for me.

  16. #16
    ABW Ambassador
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    I once started promoting a merchant and immediately hit a 3/5 conversion ratio. the merchant was quick to send a congratulatory email within the hour - then conversion halted to a trickle.

  17. #17
    ABW Ambassador MoneyBusiness's Avatar
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    You know, same thing happened to me. I start a new merchant and think I hit the jackpot. About a week later, nada - zip - zilch. I keep hearing this with other people too. I wonder if it's just coincidence?

  18. #18
    ABW Veteran Mr. Sal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MoneyBusiness
    Ok, I'm curious:

    Everyone that deals with CJ has to have some level of trust, right? What do you do to not drive yourself crazy that things are tracking well, or not well? I personally try to stay as busy as possible with other projects, but it always sneaks back into my head...
    Look, it's like you said: "Trust is a Tricky Thing"

    So why just mistrust CJ and not the rest?

    Who is lying and making money, and who is lying and preventing you to make more money?

    Just remember this:
    If you can't trust no one for now, just and one day you might see the .





  19. #19
    ABW Ambassador MoneyBusiness's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Sal
    Look, it's like you said: "Trust is a Tricky Thing"

    So why just mistrust CJ and not the rest?

    Who is lying and making money, and who is lying and preventing you to make more money?

    Just remember this:
    If you can't trust no one for now, just and one day you might see the .





    Great, thanks, now I'm thinking about pizza..

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