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  1. #1
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    Bad customer service from ShareASale.com
    We opened an account on ShareASale.com more than 20 days ago. But found it doesn't lead to many useful affiliates and cannot generate any sales. So we want to cancel the account before 30 day so that we can get a 60% refund of the network access fee. However, we submitted several tickets on the day before yesterday and yesterday, but cannot get a timely response at all. I have to call them and the technical support said they will have someone take care of the issue but I still get no responses thereafter.

    Does anyone have similar experiences?

  2. #2
    ShareASale President/CEO and ABW Veteran Brian - ShareASale's Avatar
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    Chcw,

    If you would like to post the ticket ID or IDs that you submitted I can look into them for you.
    Thanks,

    Brian Littleton
    President/CEO - ShareASale.com, Inc.

  3. #3
    Advocate mellie's Avatar
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    Twenty days around the Christmas holidays and you're giving up? Sometimes timing affects these things. Some of us chose to take time off to enjoy the holidays with our families and or have had other issues to deal with. I also believe you need to be proactive in terms of recruiting affiliates.
    Melanie
    President - Affiliate Advocacy 2008 ShareaSale Performance Industry Advocate Award, 2009 Affiliate Summit Pinnacle Award - Affiliate Advocate
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  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    Yeah, the last thing I am looking to do during the holiday season is add new merchants. If you are giving up after 20 days that tells me you probably aren't ready for affiliate marketing yet. Not sure I would want to work with such an impatient merchant.

  5. #5
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    What exactly was your expectation? Did you think that you would open an account and the affiliates and money would just automatically appear? How have you promoted your program? How are you going about recruiting affiliates? Do you have an affiliate manager or OPM? It might help if you explained to us exactly what you are looking for from a network.

    I'm not sure that 20 days is long enough to evaluate any program, but that gets back to your initial expectations. And as stated earlier, timing is everything.

    -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

  6. #6
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    Sure. We submitted two tickets. The ticket IDs are JZX-884124 and QTE-781897.

  7. #7
    ShareASale President/CEO and ABW Veteran Brian - ShareASale's Avatar
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    Chcw,

    I'm a little confused on this one, because I looked up the ticket and our original response came 2 hours after you submitted it - and you followed up with us with what you wanted to do.... the program is just in queue to be closed, etc... Everything should be taken care of shortly but your original ticket was only received yesterday ... Did you send an earlier ticket that wasn't responded to? It may just be that we noticed a duplicate, etc...
    Thanks,

    Brian Littleton
    President/CEO - ShareASale.com, Inc.

  8. #8
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    OK. I see.

    I cannot get a confirmation from you saying the account will be closed shortly(you don't give replies to one ticket, neither to the lastest post of another one), so I try to post on the forum. Since now it is on queue, it will be OK.

    Thank you.

  9. #9
    ShareASale President/CEO and ABW Veteran Brian - ShareASale's Avatar
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    Yes - everything is all set, the program is set for cancellation, etc...
    Thanks,

    Brian Littleton
    President/CEO - ShareASale.com, Inc.

  10. #10
    Newbie Rolet's Avatar
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    chcw - ShareASale is one of the most reputable networks out there, I run three merchant programs on them. You obviously are not ready for Affiliate Marketing or are looking for a "quick" fix for your company and I can tell you that anyone or anything that promises immediate sales results is full of poop....I would not recommend leaving SAS at all, if you are serious about running an affiliate program, besides SAS's sign up fees are so small, a whopping $350....I mean seriously? 20 days and you are giving up? did you actively recruit affiliates or did you jsut come here to try to put down SAS because you didn't make any sales in two and a half weeks, which also happen to contain 2 holidays......

    SERIOUSLY????????????

    Share A Sale ROCKS!!!!!!!!

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador Daniel M. Clark's Avatar
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    I don't know about anyone else - and I'm not going to get into the wisdom of testing a new network for 20 days during the holidays - but in my mind, when the President/CEO of a network responds to a thread like this and clears up the confusion or settles the issue, that's good customer service.

  12. #12
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    "We opened an account on ShareASale.com more than 20 days ago. But found it doesn't lead to many useful affiliates and cannot generate any sales. "

    What is that, about the 19th of December? It's already been mentioned but 20 days not enough time. You're going to have to do some recruiting on your own. And it's the holidays. That time period is not exactly prime time for starting up a program. Usually too many other things going on. I was too busy with the merchants I already had and then I took a week off about that time for the holidays. Just unrealistic.

  13. #13
    Believe knight01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HecticDMC
    I don't know about anyone else - and I'm not going to get into the wisdom of testing a new network for 20 days during the holidays - but in my mind, when the President/CEO of a network responds to a thread like this and clears up the confusion or settles the issue, that's good customer service.

    And based on some of the posts we've seen today it says a lot about how you deal with your customers. Notice the title wasn't changed? Someone immediately (regardless of if it is the owner of the company) engaged the customer and then reassured them their concern had been taken care of.

    Again, Brian, great job of showing all of us how a business should respond to issues.
    Someday starts today
    Military Discounts

  14. #14
    Affiliate Manager Alan Hamilton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chcw
    Does anyone have similar experiences?
    Now that you mention it, I've had numerous problems with SaS service and I think it's time I spilled the beans on this covert operation. On several occasions, I submitted an inquiry, request or suggestion and had it take as much as 2 hours or more before one of those SaS "slackers" got back to me!

    Heck, on two of the many occasions in which I called to speak with someone they had to take a message and call me back. Sometimes that took over an hour too. For the past four years I've often wondered if Brian Littleton is an actual person, or they just use the name and that handsome guy in the Avatar as a front for some get rich quick network that bilks merchants of a $25 minimum monthly service charge, which they probably promptly spend on liquor and loose women. (sorry Sarah & CT!! LOL)

    chcw - my sincere advice is that you should have given it several months, evaluated / played with / tuned your site message(s) / commission structure / etc etc etc and then repeated the process until you got it all together. But if the minimal merchant fee is difficult to absorb for a while, you are probably better off to back away as the financial pressure taints clear thinking.

    Without any negative intent, I agree that you are not ready to market an affiliate program, and I suspect that you have a lot to learn ahead of you in order to gain a better understanding of the how, what, when, where and why of it all. Good luck to you in your quest to get there. BTW, you are better off without Flamingo World too. She makes way too many sales, and that creates a fulfillment nightmare that can lead to excess profits. eew!!
    Join the Spicy Aprons Affiliate program on ShareASale Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/spicyaprons Follow us on Twitter @Spicyaprons

  15. #15
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    It definitely sounds as if most of the "problem" here was an unrealistic expectation of how an affiliate program can "perform" for a merchant. Perhaps a tiny bit of homework (such as reading through the "Merchant Best Practices" forum here, or buying Geno's book, or perusing my web site) would have saved this merchant a lot of inconvenience and irritation.

    Hmm, let me check through the free advice I posted on my site for merchants (I think it was "more than 20 days ago"):

    "During the first few months of an affiliate program, costs will far exceed gross revenue, and even over the first year, costs are likely to exceed profits from affiliate-driven transactions. It is likely that the affiliate program may generate zero new sales in the first 60 days."
    (from "Reasons Not to Offer an Affiliate Program")

    "Network Size: Probably the single greatest misconception about "affiliate networks" is the notion that by joining an affiliate network, the merchant will have instant access to many thousands (or hundreds of thousands) of "existing affiliates." // In fact, nearly all affiliate "networks" include many hundreds or even thousands of merchants, all competing for the attention of prospective affiliates with each other and with tens of thousands of other merchants outside the network. // The vast majority of affiliates within each network are either "not yet active" or "unproductive" for any merchants. // Among those affiliates who are "active and productive," most are productive only for a single merchant, and ignore offers from other merchants." (from "Choosing an Affiliate Technology Provider")

    "Full-Time Affiliate Manager: I recommend that you allocate one full-time staff position to manage the affiliate program during its first three months of operation. If this role is one of several shared by an employee (or worse, scattered as part-time work for multiple employees), the affiliate program may fail because other duties will always seem more urgent. In addition, it will be a very substantial effort to properly identify and recruit prospective affiliates, to activate enrolled affiliates, and to organize and maintain information about prospective and current affiliates." (from "My Usual Recommendations")

    "EPC is "relevant but not very important" to most affiliates. // A "zero" EPC will deter many prospective affiliates, probably including your "best prospects." // A "low" EPC will deter some affiliates, but probably not your "best prospects." // A high EPC may attract a large number of inexperienced affiliates." (from "What Factors Do Affiliates Consider...")

    And yes, I was definitely one of those affiliates who joined during the first few days after your program launched -- and although I'm still not entirely certain which merchant you are, I probably did not activate any links or send any customers during that 20-day period (though I'm not absolutely certain, since I did activate affiliate links for several hundred merchants for the first time during the past 30 days; most of them waited many months before I did so).

    Just to show how awful this whole system can be: I once persuaded a merchant to join ShareASale, and then waited 10 months (during which the merchant had a $0.00 EPC) before I finally posted links. A few months later, I was collecting $1,500 in monthly commissions from that merchant, whose patience paid off nicely for both of us.

    Good luck with your continued program through Digital River.

    I'm confident that if you shop around, you'll quickly find another affiliate technology provider [or several] who (unlike ShareASale) will make lots of absurd claims about how their pool of tens of thousands of affiliates will boost your sales in the first few weeks after launch. Many folks here can verify that they've heard such claims from salespeople for other firms, but those claims have never been true.

    I have certainly had some of my less-important emails and voice-mails for ShareASale get no response for 24 or 48 hours.

    In contrast, my emails and voice mails for other affiliate networks usually did not get any response for many days, and when I did get a reply it was usually "unresponsive to my question." That's why I don't do business with several of those companies, nor with the merchants who work with them.
    Last edited by markwelch; January 9th, 2008 at 12:48 AM.

  16. #16
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I once IM'd the owner of ShareASale.com and it took almost two minutes before he typed a response.

    On a serious note, though, read through some of the links in my signature. Get some education, make some adjustments to your site and your planned affiliate program, consult with an OPM (either for management or to help with the preparation and launch), and when you're ready (and have the right mindset and some more determination/patience) give it another shot.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  17. #17
    Online Marketing Consultant
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    What did you do to recruit affiliates? Did you provide activation incentives for them? Did you go out searching for sites within your niche? Did you advertise anywhere? Did you make program announcements on any forums, boards, blogs, etc.... where you are allowed to? Doesn't sound like it to me.

    Not every affiliate is going to just search you out, activate then send you traffic or give you front page space, especially when there is competition and someone they are happy with. YOU need to do some work as well to get the program running. It is not easy and it is going to take you much longer than 20 days to be fully successful, especially as an unknown merchant, AM, OPM.

    You have to be patient, driven and ready to meet some pretty odd demands to run a successful program.
    Adam Riemer Marketing, LLC. Online Marketing Blog and Affiliate Management Company
    Do you need help with your Marketing or Sales funneling, write me at adamr (at) adamriemer (dot) me

  18. #18
    Full Member Code Monkey's Avatar
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    Merhchant name?
    Hi Brian...

    Once the account is closed, can you please tell us the name of this merchant? We'd like to avoid this merchant in the future as well.

  19. #19
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    when the President/CEO of a network responds to a thread like this and clears up the confusion or settles the issue, that's good customer service.
    Amen brother! We can only wish that we received that kind of attention from other services we utilize. I could name one that has NEVER responded to any email that we've sent to them. As far as I can see, SAS is on top of almost every problem that comes along, so here's my opinion...


  20. #20
    Mama in Charge Anne's Avatar
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    I can't imagine adding a new merchant in December.... crazy crazy time to expect new signups. Like Alan says, it is a learning process, and you really can't afford to be impatient.

  21. #21
    Affiliate Manager Alan Hamilton's Avatar
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    These kids today Anne.... Sheesh mo-neesh!! "I want it all right now, me me me me me blah blah blah, shortcut, least work, least effort, throw it up and they will come, what have you done for ME today, do it because it will help ME!!! Jeepers, youth really IS wasted on the young!!

    (of course Anne, you are hardly past your high school days, but you seem so mature and level - headed so I figure you'll get it)
    Join the Spicy Aprons Affiliate program on ShareASale Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/spicyaprons Follow us on Twitter @Spicyaprons

  22. #22
    web dev with whiskers tn-morgen's Avatar
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    I guess my situation was different. I found a product through a customer, sent them to SAS & had my first sale in less than 48 hrs. I get sales about every day on that product.

  23. #23
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    Brian, please have your staff answer ticket QTE-781897
    We replied this ticket on Jan 10, and till now we still haven't gotten the answer from you.
    Last edited by chcw; January 16th, 2008 at 05:31 AM. Reason: Make the meaning more clear

  24. #24
    Affiliate Manager PetsWarehouse.com's Avatar
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    Thumbs down
    You again!

    Why do you need to use the forum for you petty complaints, if they didn't get to your issue fast enough call them.
    Bob Pets Warehouse
    Worlds Largest Pet Supply DataBase
    Join our Share-A-Sale Program [since 2003] Twitter



  25. #25
    ABW Ambassador Ron Bechdolt's Avatar
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    Brian answered your question in this thread and clearly stated
    Yes - everything is all set, the program is set for cancellation, etc...
    Be patient, SAS will take care of it. It's only been a few days and they've obviously shown they are working on your request.
    Ron Bechdolt | Affiliate Program Management Consultant
    7 Days A Week Marketing

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