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September 30th, 2002, 02:00 PM #1
I got an E-mail recently from a merchant who had visited my site. It was a nice E-mail. They were very complimentary, said it looked like it would be a good fit for their affiliate program, which would generate lots of money for me.
They also mentioned they noticed that I was promoting one of their competitors (mentioned them by name, but didn't refer to them as a "competitor"), and indicated that their program had a lot to offer, and I should consider it.
Well, I'M ALREADY SIGNED UP WITH THEM! The AM didn't even notice their own ad on the site. I mean, how difficult would it be to check to see if I had already signed up? I don't promote this merchant as much as their competition, because they have a shorter cookie duration and they don't convert as well.
Short cookie duration = poor conversions
Longer cookie duration = better conversions
I realize AM's have thousands of sites to manage, but if they have time to go on a fishing expedition for new affiliates, it seems to me they might want to spend a little bit of time working with the ones they already have that don't convert well. That is, if they really care.
Here's a short list of what affiliates want in a good merchant:
1. Cookie durations of at least 7 days. The longer, the better. If you can't offer 7 days, you aren't serious about driving results. Find an ad agency to run your branding ads.
2. Cookies that aren't automatically deleted after the first sale. If the customer discovers your site through ours, we should get credit for future purchases as well, since we obviously "sold" them on you as a merchant.
3. Credit for the traffic that we send to your site. No funny business about software that was knowingly downloaded by consumers, shopping clubs, rebates, etc. If the visitor left our site to come to yours by clicking on a link, and buys something from you as a result, it's our commission. Period. You would not have made the sale had it not been for the click generated on our page.
4. No page redirects without notice, no continually "out of stock" products with a convenient E-mail address or 1-800 number on the page so you can squirm out of paying commissions when the product is back in stock. Be honest. Do the right thing to make your business succeed.
5. Clean data feeds for current merchandise. No duplicates that we have to sift through for hours to find an active link. If you have a red widget for sale, why would you need 5 different product links if it's the exact same thing in each one? Clean out the old/duplicate links. It slows us down too much when we update our sites. Show us one red widget product link so we can get it published quickly, and both of us can start making money!
6. Give us good communication. If a link is not performing well and is to be retired, give us adequate notice to make changes. Some of us have hundreds of pages, and it might take a while to weed out all of the pages with that link. This would also include responding to E-mails and phone calls. If you're so busy that you can't answer questions from your sales force, you need more help!
What do merchants get in return for this?
1. An active, diverse sales force that will widen your exposure on the Internet with sites that are unique, and targeted to selling your products. Each one has a different focus, a different way of promoting your products. This avoids the tunnel vision of a single entity promoting your product, which is limited in scope because it is not diverse enough to impact the majority of the population.
2. Efficient, cost-effective promotion of your company. If the customer doesn't buy anything, you don't have to pay us unless you are seeking leads as well. You only pay out when you get something from us. And you only pay once, only for the traffic you wouldn't have had without our promotion.
I'm sure there are more things, but these come to mind first. It's a win-win situation for both of us.
September 30th, 2002, 05:20 PM #2
Here! Here! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]
..cough...signed up for........cough....Mondera yet....cough....
September 30th, 2002, 05:26 PM #3
Write that in stone and bring it down the mountain, pass it out, and throw some lightening bolts at the ones who won't obey.
Seriously, well thought out and extremely important post.
[This message was edited by AffiliateMakeover.com on October 01, 2002 at 01:49 AM.]
October 1st, 2002, 10:43 PM #4
can i use that to send it to all the merchant? :-)
I think that is the best letter to send to this merchants so they'll wake up and smell the roses for a change.
and for Chris (Mondera),
I worked allot of hours to put you all over our site and your my on featured and crossing fingers to send you some or more business!
Good night all and bless us all.
sweetdreams to those that is fixing to go to bed and to those that still up,
GO TO BED... you have worked to do. just kidding1
Love Life to the fullest. we only get ONE chance! :-)
October 3rd, 2002, 07:31 AM #5
Anyone who wants to use this, please feel free. I was just posting what I feel. If it helps one affiliate, or gets the point across to one merchant, it's worth it.
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