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  1. #1
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    The Importance of a Reasonable Return Day Cookie
    The research shows the average delay between customers' first visit to a Web site and their first purchase has increased 80 percent since 2005, from 19 to 34 hours.
    http://clickz.com/showPage.html?page=3626740

    Think twice before adding merchants with 1 day cookie durations. Merchants who do this know the statistics and are just looking for free advertising.

  2. #2
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snowman
    Think twice before adding merchants with 1 day cookie durations.
    Where does one look for cookie duration information?
    I haven't noticed it
    ~Rhia7 -- Remember the 7
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  3. #3
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    It should always be listed with the detailed information on the advertiser. Sometimes it says Return Days.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rhia7
    Where does one look for cookie duration information?
    I haven't noticed it
    I think somebody is playing tonight.

  5. #5
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trust
    I think somebody is playing tonight.
    Not on this one.

    @Snowman -- would the CJ info on cookie duration be in that "pop-up panel" with the information on the merchant? My guess would be yes.

    Thanks
    ~Rhia7 -- Remember the 7
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trust
    I think somebody is playing tonight.
    Apparently you don't follow her posting history close enough.

  7. #7
    http and a telephoto
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    This question has been asked and answered by her several times in several threads.

    And yes Snowman, return days are important. However long durations are pretty much useless since almost everyone in the universe is encouraged to clear their cookies daily or at least weekly. I do see sales come through with long return days, so I guess not everyone clears them
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  8. #8
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    Please give some examples of being encouraged to clear cookies frequently. I've never seen that.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snowman
    Apparently you don't follow her posting history close enough.
    Apparently you don't or you wouldn't have answered in the first place. She knows where to find cookie information.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trust
    Apparently you don't or you wouldn't have answered in the first place. She knows where to find cookie information.
    So why was the question asked in a serious thread about a serious topic?

  11. #11
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    My first response:

    "I think somebody is playing tonight."

    She said that in the other thread tonight too.

    "I was half joking & half serious."

    Short term memory and gullibility is high tonight. Do you really think someone who has been doing affiliate marketing for years doesn't know where to find the cookie duration for a merchant? She's been doing affiliate marketing in the networks since 1999 -

    http://forum.abestweb.com/showpost.p...34&postcount=1



    Might as well have asked where to find the commission rate.
    Last edited by Trust; August 17th, 2007 at 04:42 AM.

  12. #12
    http and a telephoto
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snowman
    Please give some examples of being encouraged to clear cookies frequently. I've never seen that.
    Every virus checker or spyware checker in the universe encourages people to clear their cookies. At the first sign of any browser problems, people are told to clear cache and clear cookies. Any log in problems on any website people are told to clear cookies.

    I didn't think I would need to give examples, it is a common practice. Go watch a novice use their computer to shop. Go watch friends and family shop. Listen to what people are told when they have computer problems.

    People run Norton or McAffee or SpyBot or AVG or any of a dozen other programs and clearing/cleaning/removing cookies is part of the "cleanup".
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trust
    My first response:

    "I think somebody is playing tonight."

    She said that in the other thread tonight too.

    "I was half joking & half serious."

    Short term memory and gullibility is high tonight.
    Like playing dumb to hijack the thread and become the center of attention? Is that the game being played?

  14. #14
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    ding ding ding, you surely haven't forgotten all the times you flipped out about it in the past and how it annoyed you.

    As far as the topic, would have to see the whole report, not to sure about those numbers.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trust
    ding ding ding, you surely haven't forgotten all the times you flipped out about it in the past and how it annoyed you.
    Ah, a trip down memory lane.

    But Trust, isn't that showing complete disregard for the person who starts a thread? Isn't it kind of like giving Snowman a slap in the face, to hijack his thread when he's asking a serious question?

  16. #16
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    No, continuing asking me about it is. It probably saved a lot more off topic stuff from somebody else. You should quote the second part where I'm actually trying to get it back on topic about the subject. Need to sign up here: http://www.scanalert.com/site/en/cer...owshopping2007

    and get the full report. Average hours is one thing, percentage within 24 hours is something else. But of course merchants should have longer than a 1 day cookie.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by webworker
    Like playing dumb to hijack the thread and become the center of attention? Is that the game being played?
    I couldn't have said it any better myself. And the last time I pointed out her behavior, she proceeded to post a very rude retort directed solely at me. Sometimes I can't help but wonder how people like this accomplish the most mundane tasks like a trip to the grocery store!

  18. #18
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    Thanks for your explanation, loxly; however, I'm still not convinced that encouraging people to delete their cookies as frequently as you suggest is the norm. Certainly that occurs when there is a problem in an attempt to troubleshoot the issue but absent any problems, I don't believe it's the norm. I certainly haven't experienced it myself.

  19. #19
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    There's some of that, not sure how widespread it is, where some of those programs run automatically to check for adware and clean it automatically as well as cookies.

    "People run Norton or McAffee or SpyBot or AVG or any of a dozen other programs and clearing/cleaning/removing cookies is part of the "cleanup"."

    I know Spybot does, I have AVG and that's just for viruses at least the free version and what I'm using it for. I have that set to run automatically. Now there's another version/paid that can also handle spyware and such so that might get the cookies, not sure tho.

    edited to add. I just run Spybot every now and then but you can set it up to run automatically and if people do that, it will zap the cookies too.

  20. #20
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    The cookie zapping thing is one issue, but even if cookies are never deleted on users machines, it still remains an issue of concern that merchants with unreasonably short return time (literally minutes or hours, not return days) are deliberately looking for a free lunch at affiliates' expense.

  21. #21
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    I don't think a large number of people clear their cookies on a regular basis. A lot of inexperienced computer users I know wouldn't know how to clear them if you asked and most don't even run virus/spyware programs but they all shop online.

    I thought I'd run some numbers on our program to see how return days affect our affiliates and us (SAS only since CJ doesn't show this info).

    Since August 1st, 13% of our affiliate sales have been greater than 2 days after purchase. Out of that 13%, 9% of them were new clients, which shows how new buyers either:

    1. Look around for a deal.
    2. Bookmark you until they're ready to order.
    3. Wait until Payday, significant other lets them pull the trigger, procrastinate, etc.
    4. I'm sure there are more reasons but it's too early.

    The two largest were 37 and 40 days after purchase. Both of these were new customers, which shows how big the lag can be between initial visit and purchase for new visitors.

    Note on the data: I only used August 1st to yesterday so I'm not sure if this is a normal trend for our program but it certainly provides some good insight.

    I hope this info stimulates some good conversation. In conclusion, it's early, I'm tired, and I think affiliates should weigh cookie days heavily when choosing a program.

  22. #22
    Analytics Dude Kevin's Avatar
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    What Webworker said. See Toys R Us as a prime example. I think their cookie lasts 15 minutes, or something similar.

    It takes me that long to find my credit card...
    Kevin Webster
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  23. #23
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    Another note...our products are pretty straight forward. You don't have to think about anything since you're prescribed a certain contact lens and that's all you can buy.

    I can imagine normal products, especially high dollar, have a significantly larger lag between the visit and order.

    Bob

  24. #24
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    Generally I won't go under 15 return days for new merchants. I tracked the non-commissionable sales and revenue at LS for ONE YEAR and compared them for merchant's return days. There was an incredible correlation. The noncommisisonable sales really go down at 30 days.

    A VERY FEW merchants with short return times convert so well for me, I still make money with a shorter cookie. But their high level of noncommissionable sales drives me crazy and I watch them carefully and if revenue ever shows a persistent decline, I will axe them.

    I started with these merchants when I was a brand new affiliate. Don't know if I would give them a second look, unless I really wanted their product line.

  25. #25
    Affiliate Manager Howard Gottlieb's Avatar
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    Speaking about cookie terms, there was an excellent suggestion on a different thread about merchants somehow coding cookies so they can not be overridden during a few short followup time frame. The suggestion was for 15 minutes.

    I think that's a fabulous idea. If someone can get someone to a merchant's site and they leave for a sec to get a coupon code and then return to finish their purchase the coupon site's cookie has overwritten the existing cookie.

    Clearly in this case the first site is the one that generated the business.

    Anyone here have an argument against a 15 to 30 minute delay before a cookie can be overwritten?

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