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Google - Affiliates - Update
latest news coming through
Shak




msg:1154965
 9:43 am on Nov 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

following on from this:
[webmasterworld.com...]

Google are going to be making serious serious changes to the whole affiliate > merchant via ppc stuff.

early reports indicate an "auction" based system where advertisers fight it out on who can bid, and only 1 advertiser per site as such.

obviously I do NOT have correct details as I do NOT work for Google. so can not explain exactly whats gonna take place.

but be ready, it soon cometh.

Shak

 

Rajeev




msg:1155175
 6:10 am on Dec 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

Man... I have the strongest feeling that Shak is up to some game this time... Shak are you reading this. Well i think there is nothing like what is posted on here in Google's mind... correct me . and let us know where you got this news or Wonderful idea..;)

Shak




msg:1155176
 7:52 am on Dec 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

Rajeev

Man... I have the strongest feeling that Shak is up to some game this time... Shak are you reading this. Well i think there is nothing like what is posted on here in Google's mind... correct me . and let us know where you got this news or Wonderful idea..;)

1, yes I am reading this.

2, i don't play games

3, i sure hope it dont happen, however if you read all the posts, not just me who is saying it.

4, welcome to WebmasterWorld

shak

patient2all




msg:1155177
 6:55 pm on Dec 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

Seeing as how this is Dec. 28 and this "rumor" has these changes taking place right after the new year, it would be nice if either AWA or Google would shed some light on this whole thing....

da_clicks




msg:1155178
 11:44 pm on Dec 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

FYI, I mentioned this "rumor" to a client of mine that would be directly impacted. They called Google Adwords support asking a question about connecting 2 accounts.

My client told Google Adwords support that they heard of this "rumor" and was wandering if they could connect 2 accounts to track, to be prepared if this "rumor" took place.

Long story short, the Google Adwords rep sorta acknowledged the "rumor" then said that they could not comment on it. But the "sorta acknowledged" part is what I found interesting.

da_clicks




msg:1155179
 11:45 pm on Dec 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

As a follow up to clarify - I just found it interested that the "rumor" wasn't squashed by Google Adwords Support.

chrisk999




msg:1155180
 12:18 am on Dec 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

In my chats with a couple of Google reps before Christmas, the recurring statment was that they have no plans to "completely block affiliates" from Adwords. That word 'completely' is always ominously included...

I wouldn't be so quick to say that Shak is playing games :)

patient2all




msg:1155181
 1:41 am on Dec 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

The questions remains to be answered though. What will be happening and how much warning will be given? It's shameful that Google who must be aware of all these rumors is saying nothing. We're customers paying sizable amounts for AdWords, we're not the beneficiaries of some free service.

We have a potentially serious policy change looming and the most detailed "chatter" here concerns the bread and circuses offering of the stupid radio.

patient2all

contentsiteguy




msg:1155182
 6:58 pm on Dec 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

All I can say is the most obvious thing to me is that with this thread being such a hot topic here for so long, we have yet to have GoogleGuy or AdwordsAdvisor to post. That along with how the Google reps are stating their replies to the question says a lot that something different definitely must be in the works.

caveman




msg:1155183
 7:55 pm on Dec 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

> It's shameful that Google who must be aware of all these rumors is saying nothing.
> we have yet to have GoogleGuy or AdwordsAdvisor to post.

Oy. Try reading msg 121 of this very thread. What more does anyone expect?

Yeah, they're planning something. Possibly they've not finalized all the details. It's a big change, so they are wanting to find a way to implement it so that it achieves their intent, but does so with a minimum amount of damage to those contributing to their revenues.

For those very familiar with major media in general, the way this is being handled is nothing unusual. When media outlets plan significant changes in policy, they don't necessarily pre-announce all the details to the general press. That is what the announcement is for. Rather, G is doing what most of the big guys do. They quietly put out the word to gage reactions, and to provide some unofficial notice that something is coming. The word then filters out from there, and those who plan wisely build it into their whatif/risk scenarios.

When the time comes they'll make their big announcement. I don't "like it," or "not like it." I just acknowledge that it's happening. If anything, G representatives have, thru vairous channels and in various ways, been telling all those with their ear to the ground as much as they can.

Anyone who doesn't feel adequately warned at this point can't be further helped by G. Nothing is certain until it happens. Whether or not it is likely to happen is now something each player can decide for themselves. This one looks pretty likely; details notwithstanding...

steve40




msg:1155184
 7:55 pm on Dec 29, 2004 (gmt 0)


I Know many affs will be unhappy but it may also bring in more of the traditional advertising revenue
from advertising agencies and their clients

whatever i suspect that even though many aff advertisers think revenue will go down G will have done the sums and would not want to rock the share price to far

Currently G has an excess of adds for a large number of keywords and they are committed to using relevence ( clicks percent )as part of the algo
many have commented here sometimes 100 adds for a search result and that would mean 90% are not shown

From the changes in the last few months ( on hold slowed etc. ) with taking longer to have adds showing and ebay etc and their affs using dictionarys to make sure all the possibillities of 5 cent bids are covered we should have guessed some changes would occur

In general I would say it is still cheaper ppc currently to use adwords than overture so times they are a changing

This could also be used to up the minimum to 10 cents the number of adds per search may decrease but the ppc will increase

But when it comes down to it from an advertisers perspective I would prefer they resolved or did more re: click fraud

steve

suzyvirtual




msg:1155185
 8:44 pm on Dec 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

The bit of extra rumor that i haev been privy to is that "whatever" is happening is being implemented slowly over time. Soooo...hopefully, this is true and it won't be a big brick wall in the face when google finally does announce.

Seattle_SEM




msg:1155186
 9:18 pm on Dec 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

The search affiliates serve a unique niche in the online marketing world. Everyone here keeps complaining about how "ebay affiliates are everywhere" and "they're ruining everything".

The fact of the matter is that the users of Google disagree. If you see an amazon or ebay affiliate ad, its because the users are clicking on it. If an affiliate is buying that ad, it's because it is profitable to do so.

The circle of life.

shorebreak




msg:1155187
 10:49 pm on Dec 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Seattle_SEM,

As much as I'm a huge fan of laissez-faire capitalism and free markets, I don't think we can simply say that clicks and conversions are the arbiter of customer satisfaction in search.

If I sold adult magazines and took out a billboard across from a junior high school, I'd probably get great conversions, but there's still a problem.

Likewise, if searchers click on and convert with eBay affiliate ads, you have to also measure (not that you can) what that huge number of affiliates is doing to:

1) overall paid search CTR and CR
2) search volume. If people search less because every search leads to just a few vendors, then everyone who's not those vendors loses. I have *no idea* if that's the case, but people go to search engines not simply to search for ads from 3-5 advertisers, but to get tens, hundreds, even thousands of different options. I imagine Google's worry is that search query volume and/or Google brand loyalty might suffer if choice is reduced.

We've been in an extremely free market ppc world till now, but without a mechanism in this instance to insure the long-term vibrancy of search, the industry will suffer.

fclark




msg:1155188
 11:28 pm on Dec 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

it's because it is profitable to do so

I've run quite a few ppc campaigns while testing new merchants, copy, keywords that turned out to be unprofitable.

It's possible that unprofitable campaigns persist on meaningless keywords, particularly with ebay, while new affs replace those who are placed on hold.

</devil's advocate>

Seattle_SEM




msg:1155189
 12:56 am on Dec 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

shorebreak,

As much as I'm a huge fan of laissez-faire capitalism and free markets, I don't think we can simply say that clicks and conversions are the arbiter of customer satisfaction in search.

Clicks and conversions are the only true arbiter of customer satisfaction in search, and Google themselves admits this:

1) Google AdSense Sites (who host AdWords on their site via the content sydication network) are paid a CPC for their clicks based upon:

2) The conversion rate of the visitors you send to merchants (they know this through their "handy" conversion tracking tool), compared to other adsesnse publishers. If my traffic "sucks" I get $0.01, if it's "great" maybe I get $0.30.

Clicks and conversions, straight from the horses mouth.

Also, didn't you say this in an earlier thread [webmasterworld.com]:

An ideal search engine minimizes total # of clicks for the user while maximizing total # of transactions for the advertisers. IMO, Google's max CPC x CTR model accomplishes the latter but not the former.

I also frankly take issue with the idea that this free market needs correcting in any manor, and if searchers search less, but convert more, I would posit that this is an improvement to the current marketplace, and not a detriment.

DingoNY




msg:1155190
 1:50 pm on Dec 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

Maybe we'll get lucky and Google will do some sort of reasonable implementation. Like only 2-3 of each 8 displayed can be from the same destination URL. I guess I would be ok with that because it does make no sense for us to see 6 ads for ebay widgets on a page. But if they limit it to 1, well that will be hurtful to a lot of people. This would be middle ground I think.

PeteM




msg:1155191
 2:34 pm on Dec 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

Like only 2-3 of each 8 displayed can be from the same destination URL.

This is actually quite sensible as often affiliates will utilise different landing pages for the same term.

E.g.

Search term "Widget"

One affiliate could land on the product page for "Blue Widget"

Another might land on Widget Search Results.

I could work with this proposition, but limiting it to one ad per URL is too strict.

wayne




msg:1155192
 5:28 pm on Dec 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

Send the visitor to your own site first and presell your visitor on the product, and you won't have to worry about this.

esllou




msg:1155193
 11:33 pm on Dec 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

can someone give me a one number answer to this basic question:

are we talking about G stopping:

1.) people linking directly to affiliate.com/widgets?product=222&affiliate_id=johndoe using AW ads

2.) people using AW to link to their nice website example.com/widgets_page.html FROM WHERE they send people to affiliate.com

will scenario 2 still be allowed as much as people want? What are G going to stop...1 or 2?

FromRocky




msg:1155194
 1:03 am on Dec 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

They're talking about G limiting scenario 1 whereas scenerio 2 is still allowed. Since Google will limit as I beleive, one landing page of affiliate.com per keyword at any given time, example.com (affiliates' individual sites) won't be affected.

jadebox




msg:1155195
 2:06 am on Dec 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

They're talking about G limiting scenario 1 whereas scenerio 2 is still allowed. Since Google will limit as I beleive, one landing page of affiliate.com per keyword at any given time, example.com (affiliates' individual sites) won't be affected.

If that's true, then instead of 30 ads for Widgets with the display URL set to "eBay," Google will display 30 ads with different display URLs that utimately send the visitor to eBay anyway. I don't see how that could be considered an improvement. It would be better for visitors and Google to leave things the way they are.

-- Roger

patient2all




msg:1155196
 9:31 am on Dec 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

I don't see how that could be considered an improvement. It would be better for visitors and Google to leave things the way they are.

Agreed, Jadebox.

Then it would take the user 10 clicks to figure out all the ads are for Ebay. Now they can scan the results and if they see they're all Ebay and don't want Ebay, they don't have to click anything.

Of course, this alleged new camouflage would result in 10x the revenue for Google as users wasted their time reading unwanted Ebay ads.

Can't help but appear self-serving, but at least the non-Ebay affiliates tend to say something a little different in each ad, perhaps selling the customer on a different merit of the product.

patient2all

MultiMan




msg:1155197
 1:56 pm on Dec 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

instead of 30 ads for Widgets with the display URL set to "eBay," Google will display 30 ads with different display URLs that utimately send the visitor to eBay anyway.

I don't think that's true. Most affiliates like that are not really committed to their keyword enough to actually make their own site. Currently, they just lazily plug in a dynamic URL and their ad is set -- even though they have done zero effort more than that to actually commit to the keyword. While I agree that scenario 2 can be a problem (and should be addressed too), it is at least far better than continuing scenario 1. Having one's own website at least requires some real effort and commitment to a keyword.

wayne




msg:1155198
 3:58 pm on Dec 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

instead of 30 ads for Widgets with the display URL set to "eBay," Google will display 30 ads with different display URLs that utimately send the visitor to eBay anyway.

I think it would still be an improvement, although maybe not perfect. There will not be as many ads as there are now going to the same site, because it will take more time and effort to create a presell page on your own site. It is too easy now for affiliates to just add a bunch of keywords and plug in an affiliate link. Requiring them to have their own presell page would slow them down a lot. Make them give a reason to their visitors why they should buy a certain product. Hopefully Google won't allow people to just put up duplicate sites but require their content to be unique. What is the sense in having four or five ads on the same page going to the same webpage.

christh




msg:1155199
 3:59 pm on Dec 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

Multiman, as has been stated to you many times now, and in many threads: we understand you're rabidly anti-PPC affiliate. You don't need to keep ramming your agenda home here. We get the idea.

And yes, rather sadly your appauling attitude has been the motivating factor for myself to get registered here. I'm sure myself and many others have silently swallowed your nonsense for some time but I've certainly had enough.

Hi to everyone else though!

PPCBidder




msg:1155200
 6:23 pm on Dec 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

ah, the benefits to no longer being a mod ;)

shorebreak




msg:1155201
 8:30 pm on Dec 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

Multiman, I have not a single connection to the world of affiliates and have been on this board for almost two years now, so I think my opinion is unfettered:

Your point that being committed to a keyword involves having a website ***holds no merit***. Investing $$$ is CLEARLY a much better criteria than yours, and so you need to let take that dog out back and shoot it, cause it just won't hunt.

Second, don't kid yourself into thinking you had one iota of impact on what Google or Overture is or isn't doing - you had none, and your contribution to the SEM debate has primarily been one of mass annoyance. You clearly won't get off the imaginary high horse you're sitting on, but almost *everyone* else on this board has literally and figuratively kicked you off the horse, so know that I an many others (who are on the sidelines of this argument) are laughing at you every time to post.

Last, I'll admit something on your behalf given that you've shown no self-consciousness or humility - you are just as self-interested and biased as every affiliate out there and an ant could easily jump over the supposed moral high ground you stand on.

I'm Chris Zaharias and that's my opinion.

hannamyluv




msg:1155202
 7:00 pm on Jan 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

I have simply been trying to have an honest discussion

No, you have not. MultiMan, this whole site is based on a fellowship of internet professionals from all walks of the business to work together and discuss and debate all that pertains to us in order to further our own individual efforts.

Beyond the first 3 posts you have made in this forum in regards to this issue, you have added no new insights, reasons or worth to the discussion. You have wasted bandwidth and the time of people who could actually help you in the future. They will not help you now.

Even before I broached becoming an affiliate, I learned much from affiliates because they have always run hard and lean in the internet world. While I may not have always agreed with their opinions, I ALWAYS respected them and enjoyed the insights that came from my discussions with them.

As far as this place being called "webmaster" anything, I think even Bret would agree that it is an unfortunate misnomer brought about by the fact that when the site was created, a webmaster was a real position. Frankly, now a "webmaster" is nothing more than a guy with a hobby site working from his basement. I personally would be insulted to be called a webmaster. I am a web professional and as the tagline states webmasterworld is "News and Discussion for the Independent Web Professional". Web Professionals could be agencies who also may not have any real websites of their own, but I would certainly cringe to think that I may not be able to be privy to their experience and insight. Affiliates, websited or not, are no different.

You are no longer discussing, you stopped discussing when you had nothing new to offer the discussion and resorted to childish insults because you had nothing new to offer.

Go away, MM. We do not want you here anymore. We will not help you in the future (and that is a more serious price than you could ever hope to understand) and we don't care what you think.

europeforvisitors




msg:1155203
 7:25 pm on Jan 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

Go away, MM. We do not want you here anymore. We will not help you in the future (and that is a more serious price than you could ever hope to understand) and we don't care what you think.

Who's "we"? I personally find MultiMan's posts more useful and thoughtful than personal insults like "Go away--we do not want you here anymore."

PeteM




msg:1155204
 9:59 pm on Jan 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

Jan 1st is the day, so I hear

Well, 1/1 is nearly over here in the UK. Has the expected event happened?

hurlimann




msg:1155205
 12:26 am on Jan 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

I am not an affiliate and having read most of these posts I am still at a total loss of what Google is actually thinking of doing.

Clearly they are minded to make a major change and have allowed it to leak and it seems even issued details to some. This is standard corporate stuff to test reaction.

AWA having admitted as much here and stating all views will be considered should set out here what they propose in black and white. This way Google get decent free feedback and this thread will not just be the speculation, conjecture and mud slinging it has become.

What ever they do propose Google I will bet my house any change they make will be designed to increase or protect revenues or margins or is as a result of legal advice.

This 262 message thread spans 9 pages: < < 262 ( 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 [8] 9 > >
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