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  1. #1
    Join Date
    February 20th, 2006
    Alternative to Single Merchant Data Feeds
    I've been working on a project for the last few months related to aggregating product information from the web. I just thought I'd ask in this forum if anyone else has an interest in this type of data and if so what questions/comments you might have. Below is some more information.

    We have developed a method of automatically accessing product information directly from merchant web sites. As an example, our site focuses on products related to musical artists so we automatically gather products like cd's, dvd's posters, event tickets etc. The result is a variety of products from a bunch of different merchants, some of which have affiliate programs and others not. We like to provide a comprehensive list of products because we believe this increases overall web site traffic, so we plan to have all items on our web site whether or not we receive a web site commission.

    We have found this method to be a nice alternative to traditional merchant feeds because they often come in different formats and are not up-to-date. Please let me know what you think the advantages and disadvantages are of this method.

    For those of you who are really interested in this, I have attached a sample in tab-delimited text format. Note that this is a sample so it does not contain links to specific product pages but just the merchant in general.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador Snib's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    This reminds me of ShopWiki which is a very well done scraper price comparison. The problem is that you aren't authorized to use this information which opens yourself up to Cease and Desists from these merchants or manufacturers. Personally I wouldn't put up any copywrited product information unless it's in my affiliate agreement. Otherwise you've got no legal standing with these companies.

    - Scott
    Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    February 20th, 2006
    Yes, there is some similarity to Shopwiki but we do a product search of the web rather than going to a merchant site and extracting all products. We agree with the merchants that the latter method results in too much drain on their servers. So, we only hit specific product pages. The advantage of this too is that price comparisons for a product can be easily made since we can compare apples to apples. I would hope that using this method the merchants would appreciate customer traffic which can lead to sales rather than extensive robot traffic.

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