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  1. #1
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    Everything Furniture Tracking?
    Anyone running Everything Furniture and Everything Office Furniture can you please check if your links are displaying the correct "Source Code" on the site. The Source Code is supposed to display your SAS ID # but I got something else instead after clicking through to the site.

    Also I am using GoldenCan so they may be part of the problem?

    I also I tried the 800 number to inquire about an item and the person helping me did not know anything about a Promo Code that you would have listed on your site. Instead they asked for the Source Code that is listed on their site. Of course if you generate interest in a product and the customer uses the 800# but has not clicked through to EF or EOF there would be no Source Code and CS operator never asked for a Promo Code.

    They need more training...

  2. #2
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    I just wanted to post what tracking is showing. The EF girl asked for the Source Code on the EF site and this is what I found:

    Source Code: ShareSale_EF

    Great, more free advertising...

  3. #3
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    To eliminate the possibility of a problem with GoldenCan I just tried a EF link directly off the SAS site and the Source Code is different, now it shows:

    Source Code: BEF

    WTF! This is probably why I have so many clicks but no sales...

  4. #4
    notary sojac Herb ԿԬ's Avatar
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    hit a link and check to see if SAS shows it. they may not show tracking on their page but it does track to SAS.

  5. #5
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    Oh I know it tracks on SAS and I can see the clicks but it should always show the affiliate ID# on the EF site. Sales have dropped off for this one site I promote EF on and this is the first chance I've had to investigate.

    I've already contacted the AM and hopefully they get on this ASAP but I miss Jorge Ramirez as he had his hand on the throttle and was proactive...

  6. #6
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    They're Partnercentric now, that's who to call and question about the changes.

    BTW, I still have to find if there are any odd banners floating around, but I pulled them and replaced with One Way Furniture and Totally Furniture so far, and also checking out what Brent Elias (CSN Stores at SAS) and Netshops have.

    I'm like Pacific Bell, I like to be able to "reach out and touch someone."

    Now I'm gonna hunt for banners stil floating around and check this issue out and if it's farked I'll look up the whois and give the owner what for.

  7. #7
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    Found a couple banners. Source code: BEF

    So those guys very quietly took phone tracking off. Wonder who BEF is (maybe BE a F*ckhead?), but regardless, I'll simply quit the program so the links will be invalid rather the send them free traffic.

    Added:
    Found a whole page full of product links. All dead links now, I'm done. An awful lot of us joined because we trusted Jorge (with good reason) and because of the good program it WAS.

    Sneak off the phone tracking without a word PC did? Some of us like to get kissed before we get screwed.

  8. #8
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    Partner Centric was my first call this afternoon and the person I talked to promised to make sure to get this problem in front of the right people.

    My concern is that this has been going on for some time as this is the first chance I've had to check links and phone tracking. If the phone tracking is off/broken then there is the chance the click traffic is suspect too.

    I remember when PC took over and I questioned then about the phone tracking and I should have realized that the response I got at that time was a bit lacking. But I was assured that everything would stay the same and if there was any changes we all would be informed.

    Source Code: BEF May be B Everything Furniture

    I'll give them the benefit of the doubt for now but they better have a good excuse.

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador Greg Rice's Avatar
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    It sure seems to be recognizing the affiliate cookie. Going to the site from an affiliate link I got BEF and using another browser and typing their site in I got NA. Would also like to hear the reasoning behind this.
    Greg Rice Affiliate Program Management
    www.gocmc.com info(AT)gocmc.com | 330-259-1223

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  10. #10
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    One constant in the affiliate business that you can always count on is, everything will change. Everything.

    The other constant is something most of us put to the back of our minds because we rather not know the truth. It is something that happens on a daily bases and is politely known as skimming. Of course the process of affiliate referrals is wrought with obstacles many of which are difficult to see (if they are visible at all).

    So when you've been an affiliate for awhile that old adage "if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck" seems to be the little voice we have developed to help us discern which merchants we should beware of.

    (One last adage I promise) "The devil is in the detail" seems to be one of the best ways to describe how tangled the interface to affiliate marketing has become. It prompts questions like "Did they do what I think they did or was it an oversight?"

    This is what I have discovered in this case:

    Phone tracking was working on both EF and EOF and in fact operators ask for the code when they complete a phone order. I remember when Jorge was the AM and we discussed phone tracking on several occasions.

    In January I asked Partner Centric when they took over, specifically if phone traffic was still functioning. To be honest I didn't follow up after several emails with a manager there because she assured me that everything that was working would continue to work.

    I called the owner of EF and EOF today and he assured me that tracking should be working and that he would find out what the problem and get it fixed.

    Partner Centric in their last email to me explained that they figured out what the problem was, phone tracking was removed in 2006. They state that the owner told them this.

    I have removed all links, products and anything related to Everything Furniture and Everything Office Furniture and I will also remove and or avoid any merchant that is represented by Partner Centric .

    I am very disapointed in how the Partner Centric handled this as this could have been addressed in January. I am not placing any blame anywhere but I think my little voice is pretty much screaming about this relationship.

    I have already found another furniture merchant and moved on because everything changes, again...

  11. #11
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    I was told by email that nothing was going to change.

  12. #12
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    Another thought:

    If BEF is being inserted on a click from an affiliate link, then there's still something there triggering a promotion code. So instead of what the number would ordinarily have been, it's being swapped out for BEF, which is what's getting triggered.

    That only makes sense if directly typing the url doesn't trigger it.

    AND if it's a return visit, has anything been changed with return days? Or is BEF a house account that's over-writing cookies?

  13. #13
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    When I initially checked phone tracking it was:
    Source Code: ShareSale_EF

    The owner of EF/EOF explained today that the affiliate code should be displaying as:
    Source Code: ShareSale_EF-123456

    It is different now and the owner explained it is a very old code and should not be there:
    Source Code: BEF

    Owner promised to fix the problem today, AM now says that owner said that they disabled tracking in late 2006. The ability to track phone orders is in place and was working in the past. But there is no record or announcement of it being disabled. Operators ask for the source code so any phone sale made through SAS would show as: Source Code: ShareSale_EF

    This is the little voice I was talking about

  14. #14
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    So, what will change?

    The new Partner Centric management team will be working to implement some positive changes in the EverythingFurniture and EverythingOfficeFurniture programs. We also have plans to increase affiliate earnings potential with some changes to the current commission structure and increased bonuses and performance incentives. Soon affiliates will also have access to a new datafeed tool and monthly newsletters chalked full of industry news and marketing advice to help you maximize your affiliate earnings.

    We're working diligently to put in place a new program plan including an official re-launch scheduled for Mid February. We encourage all affiliates to stay tuned for news and program details. If you haven't opted into our newsletter we encourage you to do so through the mail setting in your CJ Account Manager.

    Thank you for being a valuable part of the Everything Office Furniture Team!

    Best Regards,

    Dylan & Gabby
    I think they were a little bit confused. I'm not in the CJ program, not now and wasn't then.

    That was sent back in January, I'm trying very hard to think of what possible changes have been made to increase our affiliate income. Maybe someone's, but not ours.

    All I see that's been done is that what was an esteemed, trusted and valuable program has now been seriously discredited.

    My little voice is telling me that PC fed the owner a bill of goods to get the account.

  15. #15
    Classic Rocker Mack's Avatar
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    Make sure you drop a link to this thread when you drop them so they know why.

  16. #16
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    Final Update:

    I received a 7 paragraph email from the President of Partner Centric and I was impressed that she took the time to write such a well thought out letter to me.

    I would really like to say that this company has my best interest at heart and I understand mistakes do happen. But unfortunately for her I consider most of what she wrote more fodder for my distrust of her company and any company they represent including everything furniture. I guess when you don't have to worry about earning a living through commission only you can be blind to certain things.

    There were many red flags for me in her letter but I believe this is the most telling:

    As for your specific issue concerning the 800 number tracking, let me explain. Sometime last year, long before we were brought on, apparently 800 number tracking was implemented and tested for awhile. It proved to be very difficult to technically and practically implement, as well as prove the effectiveness of, so ultimately (Owner of Everything Furniture) decided to eliminate it. There was just no discernable increase in affiliate revenue and it was a heck of a lot of work to train all the call center people to obtain the code reliably and then to manually upload those sales to the tracking interface, especially since there were so few. Frankly, it just wasn't worth the trouble and since they didn't see any significant increase in affiliate sales, it was clear that affiliates were not suffering badly from leakage.
    Not worth the trouble and a lot of work to train the call center people? When I called Everything Furniture and challenged the call center people about why they didn't ask for a code they told me that have a specific place on their online form for the code and she would have asked me for that code when I checked out with her. She even knew where to direct me to look for the "Source Code" on the page. The Everything Furniture staff are well trained to identify the code and add it to the form, and this is more than six months after the program was supposed to have been stopped. Then of course there is all that other work of manually uploading a sale to the tracking interface? Of course as soon as I identified the problem the Source Code was changed to now only display "BEF" and prior to that it displayed ShareSale_EF. I wonder how many sales were tracked with "ShareSale_EF" without an affiliate ID in the last six months?

    We manage over 40 programs, and most of them are not able to technically or practically implement an affiliate 800 number tracking policy. It is very costly, and most merchants have only a small percentage of their sales coming thru their phone lines, therefore the amount of leakage from affiliates is low. They tend to make up for this obvious inequity by offering good commissions, strong coupons and ongoing promotions to increase sales for affiliates
    And here we have the kicker, the "It is very costly" and "the amount of leakage from affiliates is low". Costly to implement phone tracking? Everything Furniture has been tracking "ShareSale_EF" for the last six months with no problem. How about a couple of lines of javascript parsing the affiliate ID to the front page and then telling the phone staff to ask for it. Leakage? Low? Any leakage is not acceptable to an affiliate and that is something we fight for every day. That she uses this as an argument is tantamount to saying that we should expect to lose money in any relationship we have with her clients due to leakage in one form or another.

    I don't know how the rest of the affiliate community feels about this issue but I will not promote any merchant that is represented by Partner Centric.

  17. #17
    Internet Cowboy
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    Very Costly?

    That is a totally absurd statement. I am not PC's best advocate, but I certainly thought they had more knowledge than that!


  18. #18
    ABW Ambassador Greg Rice's Avatar
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    While I can't speak to the effort and cost involved with other merchants using phone tracking I can speak about my clients.

    My SAS clients surely aren't as large as EF but phone tracking was not that difficult to setup and use.

    1) You place the script from SAS on the pages.
    2) You modify your order entry form with another field for the affiliate ID.
    3) The phone reps go through the form while placing the phone order: name, address, code you see on the webpage, etc.
    4) The order with an affiliate code triggers an email.
    5) Merchant notifies me of the order.
    6) Order manually credited to the person who earned the commission.

    Sure, there aren't many phone orders for online shops and even fewer from affiliate links but I'm pleased as punch to get those emails about an affiliate phone order.

    I don't want to sound like a snob but when talking with prospective clients I look for a certain mindset, among other things. This mindset includes how the merchant really feels about their affiliates. No, I don't come right out and ask what they think about affiliates but questions during the interview reveal how they view their partners. One of the questions is about tracking phone orders if they are a retail site.

    Rest assured that my clients have the proper mindset, which is why I stake my reputation on their programs. There have been times when their dedication was tested and they passed with flying colors.

    The day they tell me that properly tracking all affiliate sales is not important is the day I start looking for a replacement. I'm not saying EF and PC don't think this is important but just saying it's important to me.
    Greg Rice Affiliate Program Management
    www.gocmc.com info(AT)gocmc.com | 330-259-1223

    Join us! - MiNeeds.com | DiscountCandleShop/CheeseSupply | Feng Shui Plaza

  19. #19
    Newbie Bosston's Avatar
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    Thanks for the shout-out, Webworker! We appreciate it! (Brent is in Chicago for the weekend -- I hear he's going to try to meet up with the SAS crew while he's there).

    At CSN we do carefully monitor our CSR's acquisition of the phone tracking code and really push them to get it all the time. We use that code to track all phone sales, not just affiliate. It's a really important tool for us in order to track phone revenue. I can't imagine not having it.

  20. #20
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    Thumbs up
    After all the lengthy emails I received from the president of Partner Centric I though that it was just business as usual from another merchant. But through an email I received in error and the information it contained I decided to call the owner of Everything Furniture again.

    Scott, the owner was very apologetic for the problem concerning phone tracking and guess what folks, he is very aware of how easy it is to set up and run and he will be enabling phone tracking again. In fact he spoke some key words I was hoping to hear like "javascript code" on the site to track the affiliate ID's. It seems that his only failing was to entrust his affiliate program to Partner Centric and they kinda dropped the ball on this issue.

    I don't like to slam a company in public but the phone tracking issue is something Partner Centric could have nipped in the bud in January. I asked Gabby at Partner Centric specifically about phone tracking and the response I got was, and I quote:
    "Hi,
    I totally understand, and we would let you know if there were any
    drastic changes. Everything is staying the same, so you don't need to
    worry
    Gabby"
    I don't even know now if she even knew what she was responding to!

    When I first contacted Partner Centric it took three emails to Gabby to get one question answered. She also never followed up on several other questions I had at the time.

    Also the response I got from Partner Centric when they claimed that phone tracking was "costly and hard to implement" is a clue that they are not very tech savvy.

    My only regret is that I had to bring Everything Furniture into something like this when the affiliate manager should have taken care of it from the beginning. All it would have taken is a call to Scott in January and he could have easily enabled phone tracking and explained to them how it worked.

    I would like to apologize to Scott for any trouble these posts have caused him or his company and I plan on re-instating the Everything Furniture affiliate program on my sites.

  21. #21
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    I called the owner of EF and EOF today and he assured me that tracking should be working and that he would find out what the problem and get it fixed.
    Sounds like the first he heard of it. I still would like to know why someone stated that the owner told them that phone tracking had been removed in 2006.

    Partner Centric in their last email to me explained that they figured out what the problem was, phone tracking was removed in 2006. They state that the owner told them this.
    What's the reason to say that?

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by webworker
    Sounds like the first he heard of it. I still would like to know why someone stated that the owner told them that phone tracking had been removed in 2006.

    What's the reason to say that?
    I don't know why they said that but I think I would believe the owner of the company before I would believe the AM. Scott is a really straight up guy, from what I could tell on the phone and my experience with Partner Centric has been less than stellar.

    I think the lesson learned here (by me at least) is that when things don't seem right, or you want a question answered you need to go to the source, the owner.

  23. #23
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    If you clicked over direct from SAS the code was BEF. So it was being "tracked" that the SAS site was the source of the click. That's normal with that particular tracking code, isn't it?

    However, when you clicked over from a regular affiliate link on an affiliate site the code was Shareasale_EF. So it's being tracked that an affiliate link was the source of the click, isn't it?

    But - that second instance of another code is also normal with the tracking script (or was) except that it used to be that it was the referring affiliate's code showing up and now it's a generic code showing up.

    So affiliate clicks have still been getting tracked (obviously), but the change to a generic indicates that the tracked script was not removed - it was altered. If it was removed altogether, there would be no code showing up, either Shareasale_EF or BEF. But it was showing up, wasn't it?

    So, it's tracked somehow, by someone, that it's a Shareasale_EF affiliate click and the affiliate doesn't get paid. Does that mean nobody is getting any commission for affiliate sales being generated?

    I'd like to know who changed that tracking script to the generic and why.

  24. #24
    OK this is Scott, the Owner of Everything Furniture.

    I want to clear a few things up as this seems to be turning into a PC bash.

    When we re-built our website the phone tracking code got lost in the mix. There has always been a "Source code" on the website, and for those who remember the old design, there was also a "Promo code". So 2 tracking mechanisms were in place there.

    The current source code tracking scrip looks for certain codes in the referring URL and then populates the source code on our pages. So when you see BEF that is the code for SAS, the new code is SAS_EF and there are a few others as well depending on if you are getting a datafeed from Golden can, have outdated links / data with our old codes, etc. This also tracks our other online marketing efforts.

    The plan is to append the code with the affiliates account number so we can give credit manually, so like BEF-XXXXXX.Our CSR's are trained to ask for this code so it should work fine once we get it back up and running.

    So it will all be back soon. That being said, I am suprised at how this was all handled from more than one side. Looking back, it could have been handled better from the PC side and also from the affiliate side. WATER UNDER THE BRIDGE! Please let it go.

    PC has been a very professonal organization so far and so has Linda, Gabby and Matt. I am a very demanding customer so I may come off sometimes as not being happy, just my way of not getting complacent I guess. I have high expectations of our program and it has seen growth. Only the future will reveal if it meets my expectations over the long haul.

    Anyway, I want all affiliates to be happy, we have a good program and the summer sales tend to get nice and big. Don't forget to promote patio furniture! We have a new vendor going online in the next few days, BIG tickets, and all will be on sale for 10% off.

    Cheers guys.

    Scott

  25. #25
    FYI the phone tracking is LIVE and working. CS reps are trained and ready to go, test them if you wish.

    Also, we have a suprise in store for all affiliates that will ultimately mean more MONEY in your pockets...stay tunes, PC will break the news soon.

    Scott

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