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  1. #1
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    Questions about creating a shopping portal
    Hey everyone, noob here with some questions. I have been searching around the forums for a while now and have found that I don't even know the vocab to do an effective search.

    So here is the deal...I am in the very early stages of building a site that would act as a price comparison for a niche market (I think the term is shopping portal). For example say someone is looking for an ASUS P5N-E SLI motherboard. My site would go and find all the reputable merchants that offer the product and show them to the visitor. Nothin' fancy...

    What my site would need is a list of all products that a site offers so that I can link directly to them and get a little bit of money for the trouble. Someone mentioned a datafeed...this sounds like what I am asking for. Where do these come from? Can I call some sort of web service from newegg or whereever and they give me back a huge list of products? Do i need to use something like Commission Junction to get access to these datafeeds?

    I see these things all over the place...bizrate.com is a huge one. Where do they get their data? Obviously the vendors are providing it, so how can a new site get some examples and such?

    I know this has probably been asked 100 times, but I can't seem to find the search that will give me what I need.

    Thanks for your help!

    David

  2. #2
    Newbie Rolet's Avatar
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    sign up for programs within networks or in-house, ask for access to their datafeed...........you have to be an affiliate in order to make any money otherwise you are selling their products free.....

  3. #3
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    Thanks for responding Rolet.

    Sorry for being dense, but by networks you mean things like Commission Junction and such? What does in-house mean? Just asking the vendor directly?

    Ok...so lets go with newegg.com for a second. I can just email them for their feed? I would assume it changes all the time. Is there a place I can get it say, on a daily basis?

    Also, when I have looked at newegg's affiliate program information, they require you to have a website first. I am building mine, but part of the building process is knowing how to capture and catalog data. Seems like a catch 22...

    How do you get around that?

    David
    Last edited by flyingpenguin; December 21st, 2007 at 05:45 PM. Reason: clarification

  4. #4
    Newbie Rolet's Avatar
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    Networks = Commission Junction, Share A Sale, Avantlink, Linkshare.... Just look around ABW

    InHouse = affiliate programs run internally - again look around ABW

    Datafeeds - Have you looked around ABW and read any of the boards on affiliate education?

  5. #5
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    I have been reading quite a bit of stuff on ABW, but so far I haven't been able to locate answers to my questions. Most of the items I have read are for content publishers that would like to have affiliate links on specific products.

    My site would need just about every product a merchant offers so something like popshops doesn't seem viable.

    I have signed up for a linkshare account, but I am just beginning to wrap my head around it.

    Any word on the catch 22 I mentioned above?

    Thanks again for the help.

    David

  6. #6
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    David, perhaps GoldenCan offers a solution that can help you out. Here's a search based on the product description that you mentioned previously: ASUS P5N-E SLI motherboard. Click the link at the bottom of their page for more info on their service. Make sure you read everything carefully and understand how their service works.

    You will still need to have a website to be approved in to most programs, however you do not need to be approved to display sample data using GoldenCan. You just won't be paid on any products until the individual merchants accept you into their programs. If you try this route, make sure that you update GoldenCan with your affiliate IDs from the various networks.

    Hope this helps. Good luck.

    -rematt
    "I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant." - Richard Nixon

  7. #7
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    I looked into them a bit, and am currently looking into CJ. That demo you showed me looks promising though. Will have to check that out in more detail.

    Initially making money isn't a requirement. Before my site can get its legs off the ground, I need access to the data. This seems like a start.

    Thanks!

    David

  8. #8
    Life is Supposed to be Fun! Rexanne's Avatar
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    Hi David,

    You can also look at data feed tools, such as Web Merge, Pop Shops and Golden Can - You'll find lots of info about all three here at ABW - these programs incorporate data from feeds for you and you can then pop them into your site with a pretty simple copy/paste function.

    I know nothing about comparison shopping portals. There's probably software that will do that for you, too.
    Peace,

    Rexanne

    Rexanne.com
    Loving Everyone's Child Creates Magic


  9. #9
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    There are two Catch-22's that you will run into.

    To receive the LS and CJ datafeeds, you need to be accepted into the merchant's program and either have a substantial history of selling the stuff (I remember $10,000/month gross) or pay LS and CJ each about $200 as a one time setup fee (you can then receive as many datafeeds as you are accepted for by the merchants. I would look at SAS for a start in the datafeed business - no setup charge.

    Regarding the other Catch-22 - how do you show a working site if you haven't been accepted yet - in the comment box in the application to join new programs you can offer a vision of what your site(s) will eventually look like - AM's are used to this solution to the Catch-22 and most will approve you and give you a chance

    Charles

  10. #10
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    Hey Charles, thanks for the advice, but I got a bit confused. I understood LS, CJ, but what are SAS and AM's?

    Sorry for being a bit thick...

    I saw that vendors like newegg have a publicly available datafeed. Is this common? It seems like if you know which vendors you want to use that this would be the way to go because you can take the data and do whatever you want with it, as opposed to say GoldenCan which acts as a middleman...

    Does anyone know where places like bizrate and pricewatch get their info? They are showing stuff exactly like I would like to.

    The problem with a lot of these affiliate things, I have found, is that you have to know the product you are looking for ahead of time. My site will showcase hundreds of products that will change regularly...

    Sorry for all the questions, but you guys have been great.

    David

  11. #11
    Newbie pricecom's Avatar
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    Price comparison Engine - Data feed
    Hi David,

    Getting data feeds from merchants or networks is the easy part. The tough part is finding a reputable source that has enough required data to create a comparison engine or create a dedicated channel. At a minimum, the data that needs to be included would be(possibly more depending on the type of products):

    Man_Name
    Man_SKU
    Prod_Name
    Prod_Img
    Category
    UPC_code


    The Category tree (taxonomy) is probably the toughest part. You may want to find data feeds that are specific to certain verticals in order to get the most relevant data. So for example if you are launching a Perfume Channel, you may want to get data feeds from Perfume Companies directly, and use that as your base/foundation. The data feed should include Parent/Child Categories and possibly even additional 'branches' that can be used as 'filtering' options on your website.

    A final note: NOT ALL DATA FEEDS ARE CREATED EQUAL.

  12. #12
    Antisocial Media Expert ProWebAddict's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flyingpenguin
    Hey Charles, thanks for the advice, but I got a bit confused. I understood LS, CJ, but what are SAS and AM's?
    SAS- Share a Sale
    AM- Affiliate Manager

  13. #13
    Newbie PublisherZilla's Avatar
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    You could also join an affiliate program for a comparison shopping engine and basically get data feeds for thousands of merchants all at once. (hint:shopzilla publisher program) For these types, you'd get paid on a CPC basis, rather than a CPA.

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