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  1. #1
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    Misconception About Unauthorized Coupons
    I've seen this from time to time and in some recent threads. Usually from affiliates who don't do coupons on a normal basis or a merchant posting about their own rules. A lot of times they get it wrong on what is authorized and what isn't.

    The reality is only the merchant would know and each merchant is different. Each merchant sets their own rules as far as that.

    Exclusive Coupons. There are some obvious ones with the site name usually being the coupon code 90%+ of the time. They're meant just for that site but we have seen other sites grabbing them. Some merchants take action on them, some don't. And a lot of the sites that grab them off of other sites probably could get their own by just asking. I don't think too much of those sites that are grabbing other sites exclusive codes.

    There are merchants who have coupons for affiliate use and tell affiliates to only use those and no others. I'm all for merchants keeping up on that.

    You have a few merchants that say you can post any coupon you find anywhere.

    There have been many times I check out a merchant, don't see any coupons in the creative and they tell me just to sign up for the consumer newsletter and use those. So you have merchants that are fine with posting coupons you get in consumer newsletters.

    What about credit card coupons? Some are ok with it, some aren't. It varies between the merchants. My first year doing this, trying to learn all about coupons, I used to email merchants asking. What if you see a coupon site with a coupon that looks like AMEX2007, obvious Amercican Express coupon. Is that authorized? Only a merchant would know, most would think not but let me point you to an old thread:

    http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread...erican+express

    So as far as what coupons affiliates can use, it varies between merchants. If you're not sure, ask the merchant.

  2. #2
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    Excellent post

  3. #3
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    By the way Trust, I thought your #1 post, the "Misconception About Unauthorized Coupons" stuff, was excellent.

    The timing is also very good given the unethical affiliate discussions. You planted a nice seed in my head to be slower to jump to conclusions - because your post was right on - many times a merchant will say, when asked, "go for it, using the amex20 code is cool with us" kind of thing.

    Thanks for the reminder!

  4. #4
    Affiliate Manager guinness618's Avatar
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    It would be wonderful to have id tags in exclusive coupons that would credit any sale using that coupon to it's rightful owner. Will it happen in the near future? Hopefully.
    It's important to remember, that the coupon code is a way for merchants to track the success of its individual marketing efforts. When an email is sent with a code, it's important for us to be able to track the sales generated, so we know where to direct our efforts and dollars. When affiliates grab those codes and post them, it skews our reporting and results in inaccurate data. That's where the problem lies for me.

  5. #5
    Moderator leeann's Avatar
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    Good post. Maybe it will motivate merchants to communicate their coupon terms on an individual basis in welcome letters .
    leeann


    Shoppers determine what has value and they like coupons. Stop manipulating who set the cookie just because you do not like coupon and promotional sites.

  6. #6
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    "When affiliates grab those codes and post them, it skews our reporting and results in inaccurate data. That's where the problem lies for me."

    The data I don't think is ever too accurate to begin with. A better way would be a link in your newsletter to a landing page and tag them that way. I think a lot of merchants are ok with getting various codes because they realize shoppers who normally use them, are going to try to find the best ones out there. Let me give you an example.

    A couple of months ago a merchant was about to withhold 10% of my commissions (only time this has ever happened to me) because they said the shoppers from my site didn't use an authorized code. I told them I only used the codes they sent out to affiliates and also that I knew they only wanted their affiliates to post codes for affiliate use, they say that in every newsletter. She gave me the dates of the sales with unauthorized codes. I gave her links and screenshots of my cache showing that I only had up the code they sent out. Only posted codes for affiliate use for them. And after some more research, she emailed be back apologizing. I told her one of the possibilities is they found a better code elsewhere and used it instead of the one I had on my site but they clicked from my link last.

    And nowadays with some recent examples of sites where users submit all kinds of codes, your code in the newsletter is likely to be on many of those sites. That skews your reporting too. Unless you have another way to tag your newsletter subscribers besides just the code?

    Actually you just posted what I was talking about: http://forum.abestweb.com/showpost.p...&postcount=126

  7. #7
    Member $Cleopatra$'s Avatar
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    Absolutely fantastic thread that I hope all affiliates (who post coupons) take the time to read.

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