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  1. #1
    Member KirkMcD's Avatar
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    Auto Approval Of Affiliates
    Merchants/Affilate Mangers,
    What is the point of using Auto Approve, if you are just going to go and check out the affiliate's sites anyway? Please just turn it off.

    You do know that there is no place to mention doing PPC and that it isn't possible to list all our sites in the profile SAS has and that we have to pick a main site that might not have anything to do with any of the other sites we run, right?


    -- Kirk
    Last edited by KirkMcD; September 5th, 2006 at 12:08 PM. Reason: changed title

  2. #2
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    What is the point of using Auto Approve, if you are just going to go and check out the affiliates sites anyway?
    1) Speed! Affs can start promoting right away, without waiting for me to approve them. It's not so much whether I'll look at aff sites, but WHEN. Auto-approval keeps everything moving nicely.

    2) Yet, I do eventually check, just to make sure I don't see anything crooked. I haven't found any crooks, but I figure I'd better take a look just in case. But, it may take a while for me to get to it. Hence, point #1.

    3) I HATE waiting to be approved as an aff, or feeling like I'm being put under the microscope. It'd be pretty hypocritical of me to *not* have auto-approval!

    You do know that there is no place to mention doing PPC and that it isn't possible to list all our sites in the profile SAS has and that we have to pick a main site that might not have anything to do with any of the other sites we run, right?
    Yep! So I usually don't pay much mind to the in-profile site, although I do look at 'em.

    When an action happens, it shows the referring page. That's the part that I find the most important. But before any action happens, all there is to see is the profile sites...
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  3. #3
    notary sojac Herb ԿԬ's Avatar
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    and you can show more sites by delimiting with a comma in the area of your profile where it says "additional websites you control"
    l Websites you Control

  4. #4
    Member KirkMcD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Herb ԿԬ
    and you can show more sites by delimiting with a comma in the area of your profile where it says "additional websites you control"
    l Websites you Control
    Yes, but there is a limit to the number of characters that you can enter. I think it's about 250. So I can't list all my sites.

  5. #5
    Network Rep & ABW Ambassador Carolyn - ShareASale's Avatar
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    I've seen a couple of affiliates list a link in their application that takes the program manager to a page that lists the affiliate's specialty, marketing intent, sample sites and any specific needs. You can bet that not only did those affs get approved immediately, but they got put on the VIP track. Perhaps you could start a MySpace page? lol!!! A funny!
    best,
    Carolyn
    ShareASale Client Services
    Y!: SAS_CTang
    e: ctang(at)shareasale.com

  6. #6
    Member KirkMcD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carolyn - ShareASale
    I've seen a couple of affiliates list a link in their application that takes the program manager to a page that lists the affiliate's specialty, marketing intent, sample sites and any specific needs.
    Hmm, that is a good idea.

  7. #7
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    Auto-Approval; additional sites
    Like others, I switched to auto-approval for most affiliates, and I have not yet found anyone whom I later want to remove. As noted, the key is to give affiliates the ability to go right in and use our datafeed and build a site while they are "in the mood." I know that as an affiliate, I sometimes would get inspired on a Friday night, and want to build a new site to test my idea over the weekend -- and merchants who didn't approve me until Monday simply lost that opportunity, because I would build the site with links to other merchants.

    On the "additional site" issue, I have seen a few affiliates enroll in our new program this past week, whom I really was confused about -- in one case, their main site listed came up as 404 not found. Since most of the enrollments came from direct recruitment, I was usually able to make the connection, but sometimes I did need to look up the "additional sites" info.

    If you have more web sites than will fit in the "additional sites" field on ShareASale, why not provide the URL for a page where you list all your sites?

    I know that some merchants, in an excess of caution, demand to know in advance all sites where their links will appear (worrying, of course, that you'll apply for approval of your "happy bunny" web site and then post the affiliate links on your "Al Queida is right" web site).

    Most of the affiliates I am recruiting do operate multiple web sites (usually multiple quotation-themed sites, or a quotation site as part of a series of related-theme sites, but sometimes an eclectic collection of completely unrelated sites, one of which may have a "quotations page"). Since I have a history myself of creating multiple unrelated web sites that perform moderately well in driving affiliate sales, I am very open to these folks.

  8. #8
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Good points, Mark
    ~Rhia7 -- Remember the 7
    Twitter me

  9. #9
    Member KirkMcD's Avatar
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    Let me just add why I started this thread.

    On Saturday, I joined an auto approve merchant for a new website I created. Today, I was declined. I asked the AM why?

    They said, my site (they only looked at the main site listed) doesn't meet their very strict guidelines and that they dissapprove about 80% of the people who join. They also asked if I even bothered to look at their site before I decided to join. Of course I did. I thought they were a perfect match.

    [rhetorical question]
    If 80% are dissaproved and they have such strict guidelines, why are they wasting everybody's time by having Auto Approve and by not even posting the guidelines? Not just the affiliates time, but the AM's too.
    [/rhetorical question]
    (Just venting)

  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador
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    "If you have more web sites than will fit in the "additional sites" field on ShareASale, why not provide the URL for a page where you list all your sites?"

    "Perhaps you could start a MySpace page?"

    It would be easier just to have it right there in SAS. That's for any network. There should be space allotted to list all our sites. I've seen over the years many affiliates wanting this.

  11. #11
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KirkMcD
    ...I thought they were a perfect match.
    There should be other sites with good affiliate programs that would match your site too, Kirk. Don't despair!!

    Quote Originally Posted by KirkMcD
    If 80% are dissaproved and they have such strict guidelines, why are they wasting everybody's time by having Auto Approve and by not even posting the guidelines?
    The TOS probably do say something like "all applications are subjet to affiliate manager approval"... Do they not?

    I must admit, I am really intrigued by the situation.

    Geno

  12. #12
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    SaS should prevent this (80% reversals of auto-approved affiliates)
    Quote Originally Posted by KirkMcD
    . . . On Saturday, I joined an auto approve merchant for a new website I created. Today, I was declined. They said, my site (they only looked at the main site listed) doesn't meet their very strict guidelines and that they dissapprove about 80% of the people who join. . . . If 80% are dissaproved and they have such strict guidelines, why are they wasting everybody's time by having Auto Approve and by not even posting the guidelines? Not just the affiliates time, but the AM's too.
    It's not a rhetorical question -- it does seem absurd for any merchant to use "auto-approve" if they know they will reverse that approval for 80% of applicants. ShareASale should not allow this, and should disable auto-approval for any merchant who consistently reverses more than 50% of the auto-approvals.

    While I might agree that 250 characters isn't enough to list a whole bunch of web sites, Carolyn's proposed solution (posting a URL pointing to a separate site introducing the affiliate, explaining the intended relationship and marketing strategy, and listing all sites) is so much better. Perhaps SaS should create a field just for this, so affiliates can provide both for the merchant to consider -- and certainly, I wish SaS would permit affiliates to append a comment to the affiliate application itself, so merchants don't have to manually match up an email to the application at SaS.

    Of course, many affiliates may prefer not to publicly post their strategies or a single list of all their web properties -- if so, then a separate email to the affiliate manager is probably the better solution.

    While we're at it, I wish SaS would let merchants use "full/limited" membership status as a condition for auto-approval. In general, even if I don't think much of an affiliate-applicant's web site, I approve them if they have already obtained "full" status at SaS, since I know they can perform. Of course, I still must evaluate applications from "limited" affiliates since everyone has to start some time, but I'd feel more comfortable making those folks wait a day or two.

  13. #13
    ShareASale President/CEO and ABW Veteran Brian - ShareASale's Avatar
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    Markwelch,

    RE: disabling auto-approve... In my opinion, that would be over-policing ... also, on our end difficult to police and monitor....

    I like your thought on the new field for affiliate to list a description, perhaps a good thing to add to the "Things we need to fix" thread/spreadsheet.
    Thanks,

    Brian Littleton
    President/CEO - ShareASale.com, Inc.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian - ShareASale
    RE: disabling auto-approve... In my opinion, that would be over-policing ... also, on our end difficult to police and monitor...
    I suppose that's your call to make, but perhaps you could try to run a report on this and have someone contact your merchants who are reversing most of their auto-approvals, to let them know that all they are doing is annoying affiliates, who are likely to associate the bad experience with SaS.

  15. #15
    Member KirkMcD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geno Prussakov
    There should be other sites with good affiliate programs that would match your site too, Kirk. Don't despair!!
    I already had two others, but their stuff would round out the selection.

    The TOS probably do say something like "all applications are subjet to affiliate manager approval"... Do they not?
    It doesn't, but I found out why.
    I was talking to the AM of the program and she told me that the whole job was just dumped on her lap after it was all set up by someone else. She has no idea how to change anything or that there is the alternate website section.

    Now I feel bad for her and I will be recommending that she should contact Support and to check in here for tips and stuff.

  16. #16
    ABW Ambassador Vrindavan's Avatar
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    some merchants from cj are the same, use auto-approve, after you set up all links and activated their links, a few more days later, they deactivate you after have time to go checking your profile.

    Purely waste my precious time, thus i sometimes will not activate a merchant until weeks later to see if they will deactivate the relationship. This is also the reason for inactive affiliates.

    And the issue for deactivation of my account usually is webmaster location, many advertisers think that you are not a good match because you are physically locate outside U.S. etc.

    Sometimes they do not know you have multiple sites, or they review the wrong website.

  17. #17
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    I my experience, based in the USA, this auto-approve problem happens with is less than 0.5% of auto-approve merchants. While it's damned annoying when it happens, I put it down to ignorant merchants rather than the SAS system.

    As far as making a links page goes, I would be concerned about exposing network details (especially on myspace) which could be traced through affiliate site backlinks if not done carefully.

  18. #18
    Affiliate Manager Maim133's Avatar
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    As a merchant Auto Approve can be scary, especially if your system is not rev-share based. But I agree, if you are just going to look at the affiliates a few days later, why not do it in the first place and save everyone some time.

  19. #19
    Newbie weightxprt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by markwelch
    I know that some merchants, in an excess of caution, demand to know in advance all sites where their links will appear (worrying, of course, that you'll apply for approval of your "happy bunny" web site and then post the affiliate links on your "Al Queida is right" web site).

    Most of the affiliates I am recruiting do operate multiple web sites (usually multiple quotation-themed sites, or a quotation site as part of a series of related-theme sites, but sometimes an eclectic collection of completely unrelated sites, one of which may have a "quotations page"). Since I have a history myself of creating multiple unrelated web sites that perform moderately well in driving affiliate sales, I am very open to these folks.
    Mark, just wondering exactly what a "quotations page" is? Also, could you shed a little more light on "creating multiple unrelated web sites" to drive traffic to your "main" site. I'd love to hear your strategies in these regards.


    Oh, and one more thing (if I haven't already bothered you enough) , what did you mean when you said that some affiliates "demand to know in advance all sites where their links will appear." Could you give me an example?

    Sorry for all of the questions but I would really appreciate some tips.

    Thanks again:

    Zach
    Last edited by weightxprt; August 14th, 2009 at 02:53 AM. Reason: Misspelling

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