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May 11th, 2006, 03:05 PM #1Do you guys get other people to...
test your affiliate links sometimes? I'm not sure what the "protocol" is, but I've squandered all the "test tries" I've got (no more cards to use - for trial registrations).
Do you often get someone else to test these links? Is there a better way?
Sorry if the questions are a bit newbish - I want to get some kind of testing system in place to test my affiliate links (on the rare occasions I need to).
Any thoughts or opinions are welcome!
May 11th, 2006, 03:43 PM #2
May 11th, 2006, 04:44 PM #3
I am lucky as to this respect. I know about 11 other affiliate marketers pretty closely and we have our own little group so if we ever question anyone or tracking we can trust each other to "test" things and still keep within nearly every TOS out there.
These last two weeks we have exposed to several adnetworks several advertisers who are doing some shady tactics and luckily the networks took action (or still are).
It is leading me to believe it's time to form a test organization or watchdog group FOR publishers in this arena. The advertisers themselves have loads of tools and resources (ip addresses, exact order information, etc) so they have plenty of things at their disposal to weed out bad transactions.
However, as publishers, we don't have all that much I have found. I have also found things like:
1) Advertisers removing their tracking code for a few days, randomly, and sometimes pretending "it was an accident".
2) Unqualifying clearly qualified leads. Such things as the person left off "ave" in the address like, or used "street" when it was "drive". While things like this are technically "unqualified" the advertiser still follows through with the transaction while reversing it on you.
3) Showing the adnetwork one page that has tracking, and sending our customers to another page that doesn't track.
4) Just today, an advertiser than is apparently "randomizing" the tracking page. Where every so often a different page comes up that is exactly the same but it has NO tracking code in it. Let's say 1 out of 10 conversions don't have to be paid for by this manner.
5) Unqualifying credit card transactions or orders without explanation nor providing any when clearly the transaction was legit in everyway. Since advertisers DON'T have to explain things to us, and only rarely provide further information it's easy for them to cut the fat and trim their bottomline in advertising expenses (aka using the publishers as suckers).
Honestly, THIS week has put me at my wits end. I am tired of having to spend all my time making sure the OTHER end of the spectrum is not scamming or doing shady things in addition to having to watch my own traffic for problems.
A watchdog group sound just like solid thing to keep advertisers honest. Since they have things to keep US honest, we need to have things to keep them so as well. I never in a million years thought that some of these advertisers would do such things. ABW alone, not only our own little group, shows there can clearly be problems with them.
May 11th, 2006, 07:19 PM #4
Thanks for the reply guys. Yeah, I've only been an affiliate for a little while, but I can tell things need a good overhaul. If CJ merchants (and other similar networks) can continue with the weird practices, I can only see it getting worse.
As far as what we can do to test...I'm all for creating an organization to help each other. Of course, getting some rules together to determine how one person can test the other's links will be the fun part. Testing a $5 product, compared to a $50 product, or a free trial signup are pretty different.
I'm all ears to suggestions. Also, I'm not sure, but I think there's a site going live soon that may help with something like this. Ms. Kellie mentioned something about this a while back: http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread.php?t=13903
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