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  1. #1
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    software to help an affiliate partner with select merchants
    I am a newbie to this thread. I have learned a ton from reading through all the posts, but have not found a direct answer to my posing question. Hopefully someone here can help.

    I am creating a website that will have a product shopping guide (I will not be directly selling prodcuts) with a very specific niche. I have looked into joining multiple networks as an affiliate but most networks only deal with large corporate companies that don't match my business model or don't have many merchants selling products in my niche.

    Ultimately I would like to attract and partner with very select merchants, most of which are not running their own affiliate marketing programs. I envision running my own network, much like gifts.com, but I am having a difficult time finding software that meets my needs.

    I realzie that I will need to have proven statistics that would attact merchants to this type of program and also realize that there could be some hestatation for merchants to "sign up" due to issues with tracking statistics and payments, ( the merchants would be paying me on a CPC basis but I would also be running the program).

    So my main questions are:

    1. Is there any software out there that will meet my needs?
    2. Would you recommend running this program through a third party for billing and tracking purposes? (would an outsourced program manager solve this issue?)
    3. Do large networks allow you to attract your own merchants and engage in exclusive contracts? ( I think I already know the answer to this question, but I have been wrong in the past).

    Thanks in advance for the help

  2. #2
    Visual Artist & ABW Ambassador lostdeviant's Avatar
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    I'm confused. Are you trying to be an affiliate, affiliate marketing program, or affiliate marketing network?

  3. #3
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    sorry for the confusion
    I guess that is part of my problem. I don't know how to classify it.

    Essentially I want to partner with merchants, who pay me on a CPC basis, for generating traffic to their site. Nothing new there, except that I want to be able to actively pursue merchants that may not have their own affiliate marketing program or part of an affiliate network. They would sign up as a merchant on our website and we would essentially be the exclusive affiliate.
    My hope is that value of my website and it target audience will entice merchants to "partner" with me.

    Does that make more sense?

    Like I questioned earlier, how do I track this and is there any software out there or any networks that offer anything that I am describing?

  4. #4
    Visual Artist & ABW Ambassador lostdeviant's Avatar
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    What you just described is NOT affiliate marketing. This forum is not really about CPC except possibly as an additional form of monetization.

    So you want to set up exclusive cost per click marketing for merchants without the middemen (Google Ad words, bid vertiser, etc.) . hmmm.

    I did a quick search online for pay per click system and pay per click software, but the results are full of software to help you manage CPC through already established programs, not for starting your own (I'm not sure why you want to re-invent the wheel)

    You'll also need to figure out how to convince merchants to work with you exclusively as a CPC partner when they could advertise with an established CPC network or have an affiliate program.

  5. #5
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    LostDeviant.

    Thanks for the info. As you can see I am really in a research phase of my business development, trying to find the best approach to creating a shopping guide for my website. I really do not want to reinvent the wheel.

    I can run a true affiliate program, but like I said before, I am having touble finding merchants that match the type of product that I would like to showcase in my shopping guide. That is why I thought I could bring those types of merchants to me. Ideally I think a third party should manage the program for reasons I mentioned earlier.

    Maybe what I am describing would be classified better under advertising? Do you have any idea how sites like gifts.com are working?

    Sorry for my ignorance...... I guess thats why I am here.

  6. #6
    Visual Artist & ABW Ambassador lostdeviant's Avatar
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    If all you want to do is include other merchants products on a website you do NOT need to start your own affiliate program or network (nor should you)
    You would need to become an affiliate and just sign up with merchants that already have affiliate programs.

    Sign up with ShareASale to start and then search their catalog for merchants to join.
    I'm not familiar with gifts dot com.

    Affiliate programs don't pay per click they pay per action (typically a percent of the total sale).

    If you want pay per click or pay per impression then you'd need to find something else depending on what you finally decide.

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