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  1. #1
    Dream Cruise megatonloh's Avatar
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    Merchants who also bid on ppc
    I just finish reading this thread:
    http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread...3&page=1&pp=25

    I do not completely understand the whole situation but have a question regarding merchants that also bid on ppc.

    When merchants compete with their affiliates on ppc, they become affiliates at that point of time (I may be wrong) that's my thought.

    A customer clicks on my ad but did not buy and continue to search and found the merchant ad and clicks and than make a purchase. Does my earlier cookie on the customer being over ride by the merchant who also place their ad on ppc?


    Thanks
    Richard

  2. #2
    Kung Fu Master Eathan's Avatar
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    That thread sounded like a very odd situation where a merchant's own phone staff were filling in orders on a computer infected with parasitic affiliate software, and so wasn't really related to PPC or merchants competing with affiliates.

    As to your question on PPC competition though, I think I disagree.

    When merchants compete with their affiliates on ppc, they become affiliates at that point of time (I may be wrong) that's my thought.
    PPC is just an advertising medium, like print, TV, radio or anything else. Merchants have every right to advertise and should. Often there's no real competition there, because their margins allow for ever so slightly higher bids, or your PPC skills allow for sales on ever so slightly lower bids. In any case, you're both happy.

    A customer clicks on my ad but did not buy and continue to search and found the merchant ad and clicks and than make a purchase. Does my earlier cookie on the customer being over ride by the merchant who also place their ad on ppc?
    Say the second ad was another affiliate ad, which do you think should get credit?

    Should it be the first affiliate that referred an earlier click, or the later affiliate who referred the buying click? One click may be weeks before the other, and considering both affiliates are paying for advertising, I think you have to say the ad that closed the sale is the referring affiliate. I think the same applies for merchants.

    The merchant isn't competing with affiliates, but rather marketing their products. If they have 15% to spend on commissions for customer acquisition, they also have 15% to spend on radio, print, TV and PPC if the ROI is there. In all cases they are buying advertising.

    With affiliates they pay for their advertising on a CPA basis, in print it might be roughly CPM based on readership and on PPC it's obviously per click. If the sale comes in on a PPC campaign the merchant is running, it's my opinion that they referred the sale, no different from affiliate number two above.

    The cookie stuffing asshats throw a wrench in the works, but without them, I think the logic stands.
    Eathan Mertz

    Black Cat Mining - Gold Prospecting & Rockhounding Equipment

  3. #3
    Dream Cruise megatonloh's Avatar
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    On affiliate to affiliate basis, the last one who clinch the sale will receive the commission. That's quite clear.

    On the merchant point of view, yes they have every right to bid on ppc. If a customer were to click on his ad first without having any affiliate cookie with it, then the merchant will have the commission.

    When we sign up with any merchant, it is stated that the cookie will stay for 30, 60 or 90 days. What we understand is if within the life period of the cookie the sale generated the commision will go to the affiliate even if the customer were to go direct to the merchant site.

    In the case of the customer still holding my cookie and reach the merchant site through the merchant ppc ad, should I not receive the commission?

    Thanks
    Richard

  4. #4
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by megatonloh
    On affiliate to affiliate basis, the last one who clinch the sale will receive the commission. That's quite clear.

    On the merchant point of view, yes they have every right to bid on ppc. If a customer were to click on his ad first without having any affiliate cookie with it, then the merchant will have the commission.

    When we sign up with any merchant, it is stated that the cookie will stay for 30, 60 or 90 days. What we understand is if within the life period of the cookie the sale generated the commision will go to the affiliate even if the customer were to go direct to the merchant site.

    In the case of the customer still holding my cookie and reach the merchant site through the merchant ppc ad, should I not receive the commission?

    Thanks
    Richard
    No! Because, the merchant bought and paid for the last link clicked on, that brought the customer to him. The last clicked link before the merchant site, that closed the sale, was his just the same as if the last clicked link had been another affiliate's.

    Your clicked on link did not get the job done. You did not close the sale. And, the customer did not remember the merchant well enough from your referral to type the merchant site into the address bar and go there directly. Had they typed it in, you would have gotten the sale. If customer bookmarked the merchant site, after going through your link, there was no intervining affiliate cookie, and they went back to the merchant site through the bookmark, that you got them to create, you would have gotten the sale.

    In this case, the merchant earned the sale through their own efforts and you did not. Your efforts must profit the merchant in SOME way in order for you to be paid.
    Last edited by SSanf; November 2nd, 2006 at 09:04 AM.
    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!

  5. #5
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    Most merchants don't use affiliate links for their inhouse ppc (they'd have to pay a network fee), so even if you introduced a customer and they returned later in the day via the merchant's ppc (so merchant is technically the "last in"), your cookie is still the last referrer (since the merchant's ppc doesn't set affiliate cookies).
    Last edited by Donuts; November 2nd, 2006 at 09:35 AM.

  6. #6
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
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    In this case, couln't the merchant fairly have their PPC link go through a redirect page or some such that does set cookies?
    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!

  7. #7
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    Most merchants aim right at their landing pages, which don't pass through a network and don't set (or overwrite) affiliate cookies. No need for a redirect for their inhouse ppc - it doesn't usually interfere with affiliate activity of any kind.

  8. #8
    Kung Fu Master Eathan's Avatar
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    In the case of merchants with the networks that is most likely true, not so with independants. I say "most likely" because networks could easily give merchants a house account for testing, etc that doesn't generate commissions and doesn't have network fees taken out.

    Speaking strictly from the perspective of what should be the case, a cookie should survive direct type in, non-paid search clicks, bookmarks and even merchant emails (assuming the customer supplies the email during a referred or cookied visit). A merchant on the other hand should be entitled to not pay for sales they generated and should be able to accurately track which marketing channel generated the revenue.

    Imagine I hosted a banner and AdSense. If the customer clicks my banner and then the AdSense link and finally buys, should the merchant pay for both the commission AND the click?
    Eathan Mertz

    Black Cat Mining - Gold Prospecting & Rockhounding Equipment

  9. #9
    Dream Cruise megatonloh's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for the explanations.

    Richard

  10. #10
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    In the case where the affiliate set a cookie and the customer returned through the merchant's ppc efforts, what do merchants generally do?

    I have seen this happen a few times in our program and have sort-of shrugged it off. Our brand is one that isn't really recognizable and so I feel that even though the customer had to re-search, the affiliate did at least introduce them to us. Yes, we pay the commission and then we pay for the click, but it is possible we could have paid for the click and without the earlier introduction made by the affiliate, we may not have converted.

    I hadn't given this much thought until I saw this thread, the orders track through the network and we pay the commission and then we pay for the click. Do merchants void transactions in this case?

    (I'm obviously quite new, have been reading this forum for months in an attempt to be able to sound somewhat educated when I finally posted, but this one drew me out)

    Thanks!

  11. #11
    Kung Fu Master Eathan's Avatar
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    I certainly wouldn't void transactions if that's the only option, but I would ask the network if they offer any sort of non-commissioned house account you can use for your own advertising (and only for advertising).

    In a perfect world there is a solution where the merchant can advertise their own products without stepping on anyone's toes, and without having to pay the affiliate, the network AND the PPC engine for any given sale. It's tough though, especially with the networks involved.
    Eathan Mertz

    Black Cat Mining - Gold Prospecting & Rockhounding Equipment

  12. #12
    Affiliate Manager Matt McWilliams's Avatar
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    I can speak only for our program, but with our's the last "affid" to get the sale is the one who earns it.

    Since we do not use an affid for our internal marketing I am sure that 0.5% of our affiliate sales are actually generated through our own marketing, which is not a big deal.

    In short, if an affiliate sends them to our site with an affid and no other affiliate overwrites the cookie and it is within 180 days, they would get credit. So long as affiliates are avoiding spyware and adware, my bet is that it all evens out in the end!
    Matt McWilliams
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  13. #13
    Merchant & ABW Ambassador
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    Quote Originally Posted by megatonloh
    When merchants compete with their affiliates on ppc, they become affiliates at that point of time (I may be wrong) that's my thought.
    There are 2 components to your question.
    1) compete with their affiliates on ppc
    Yes, a merchant and affiliate might compete on a certain term.
    Take our program, on ppc, we might bid on fairfield vacation, so might an affiliate. So there is some competition there.

    2) they become an affiliate at some point?
    I do not think so. The merchant will be sending the link directly to a specific page and without using the network. i.e. We (merchant) are sending traffic from PPC via link http://www.fairfieldgetaway.com/rc154p3031.
    An affiliate will be using a tracking link via linkshare which looks like
    http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=[SITE.CODE]&offerid=etc_etc
    In the linkshare link, a tracking info is enclosed in the link. In the merchant PPC link, it goes directly to the page without any linkshare tracking link


    Quote Originally Posted by megatonloh
    A customer clicks on my ad but did not buy and continue to search and found the merchant ad and clicks and than make a purchase. Does my earlier cookie on the customer being over ride by the merchant who also place their ad on ppc?
    There is no overrride of a cookie by the merchant. Example given above.

    You do not have to worry about cookie override with a merchant in this case of PPC.

    You want to worry about
    1) some merchant setting out some weird T&C and even if the cookie tracked and credits you, they can reverse it out. There was a discusson going on about a merchant will not give credit for coupons used.
    2) They run dual networks and there is some discussion going on about how they misalign cookies / credits, etc.
    3) uPromise. Look them up on here, they are a power affiliate.

  14. #14
    Dream Cruise megatonloh's Avatar
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    Eric,
    Can you please elaborate what it means:

    some merchant setting out some weird T&C and even if the cookie tracked and credits you, they can reverse it out. There was a discusson going on about a merchant will not give credit for coupons used.
    I did put a coupon code in one of my ad with adwords, is that against any TOS


    Thanks
    Richard

  15. #15
    Merchant & ABW Ambassador
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    Quote Originally Posted by megatonloh
    Eric,
    Can you please elaborate what it means:



    I did put a coupon code in one of my ad with adwords, is that against any TOS


    Thanks
    Richard
    Most merchants are OK with Coupon codes on your adwords. There are only 2 that I know off.

    Just read the Terms and Condition or just ask the affiliate manager. There are merchants out there that will cancel out a commission if they use a coupon. I do not want to point out any merchants but if you browse around and search the forum, you will find out who they are.

  16. #16
    Dream Cruise megatonloh's Avatar
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    Eric, thanks for the clarification. I will ask the AM about it to confirm.


    Richard

  17. #17
    Merchant & ABW Ambassador
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    Richard, just emailed you about the industry those guys are in.

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