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This 36 message thread spans 2 pages: 36 ( [1] 2 > >     
Is Smart Pricing Coming to Referral Commisions?
Click Quality Check: Some Referral Commisions Being Cut by Google
ken_b




msg:3476431
 1:26 am on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

This sounds like some version of Smart Pricing for Referral ads.

Check the Inside AdSense [adsense.blogspot.com] blog for the full story.

For some publishers who display referrals for non-Google products, the earnings you receive for the ad may now be less than the maximum referral value displayed for that ad. This is because our system will initially place a restriction on referral earnings as we monitor click and conversion data to determine that the conversions generated are valid.

 

greatstart




msg:3476467
 3:16 am on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

I hope not. Otherwise, I won't partake in that referral program. Bad enough we have to put up with dumb pricing in ad blocks.

koan




msg:3476472
 3:19 am on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

By increasing the value and quality of the referral network, we believe we'll attract more advertisers and provide more opportunities for you to earn.

Seems to me they're having difficulties attracting good advertisers if they're setting up that kind of safeguards against bad publishers.

andrewshim




msg:3476520
 5:34 am on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

referrals were really starting to cook great... but if this screws things up, then I'll just take the chicken out of the oven...

europeforvisitors




msg:3476533
 6:21 am on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

Seems to me they're having difficulties attracting good advertisers if they're setting up that kind of safeguards against bad publishers.

How so? Wouldn't it make sense to have "safeguards against bad publishers" regardless of the number of advertisers?

Green_Grass




msg:3476617
 10:28 am on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

Doesn't make sense to me to smart price referrals.. Either it is a 'conversion' or not.. What is the mid way? Why smart price referrals?

Valid conversions should be paid fully... Or if it is not a valid conversion don't pay..

Quite straight forward. I would have thought.

Scurramunga




msg:3476638
 10:52 am on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

They should also implement safeguards to protect publishers from dodgy advertisers.

mobilemaverick




msg:3476664
 11:27 am on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

EDIT: #*$!! I am absolutely foaming after reading this BS. I had just made a post asking why today 90% of my referrals were $0.01 rather than the $2.00 it should have been and I guess I know why! What the hell. I don't see how they can do this.

I have been well and truly ripped off. I am going to call my friend at the Financial times and see if they want to do an article on googles BS new policy.

"Apparently" there smart pricing which is complete BS and doesn't work fairly, is to give the publisher a fair price for their clicks based on chances of conversion.

Referrals works on conversions only. So if it converts, it was good traffic and as good as traffic sent from any other site.

It makes absolutely no sense to smart price referrals. It's unfair and IMO worth a story in the press, questioning their motives. If they do, it only goes to prove that the reasons they give us for smart pricing is absolute crap. They're probably doing it to attract advertisers to use their referrals program.

Green_Grass




msg:3476674
 11:46 am on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

Yup, this is CRAP...

I just got a 17 cent commission for selling an e book for XX $$ .. I can't believe this.. If some one has bought the ebook ..how the heck is this not a 'valid' conversion..

This is a rip off..plain and simple.

They are going to lose publishers who convert with this crap. In the referral game both quality PUBLISHERS and advertisers are important.. This is not CPC.

Green_Grass




msg:3476676
 11:59 am on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

The advertisers must be laughing all the way to the bank...

Not for long.. though. Just wait, while publishers reduce exposure to this CR*P. Big G will soon learn the Referral game is NOT CPC..

mobilemaverick




msg:3476680
 12:19 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

I am furious.

I'm removing adsense from all my websites.

It's about time Google learned they're not god and they shouldn't make moves like this without taking everybody in to consideration.

wyweb




msg:3476685
 12:26 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

I've just finished removing all my referral ads as of about 10 minutes ago. A conversion is a conversion regardless of where it comes from. This is utterly ridiculous.

drall




msg:3476708
 1:56 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

We are laughing so hard we are crying.

farmboy




msg:3476727
 2:41 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

A conversion is a conversion regardless of where it comes from.

I'm not in complete agreement with that statement.

Some clicks are valid and some are not. Likewise, some conversions are valid and some are not.

I think this new feature has the potential to be a positive for referrals in the long run.

There was a travel company selling vacation packages a while back and was paying about $25.00 for anyone who visited their site and submitted an application form.

I asked over on the AdWords forum what controls were in place for advertisers to prevent fraud in lead generation situations like this. The response was basically that there was no control.

Evidently a publisher could get friends and family members to complete the application, with no intention of taking a vacation. Or someone could purchase an eBoook and then ask for a refund after the commission was paid. Or subscribe to a magazine then cancel.

And I have no doubt people have tried those things.

If there is a reasonable control in place to prevent such fraud, I think that could attract more advertisers to the program.

FarmBoy

mobilemaverick




msg:3476736
 2:54 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

"There was a travel company selling vacation packages a while back and was paying about $25.00 for anyone who visited their site and submitted an application form."

Then IMO that's their own risk and not my problem. If they want to pay $25 for somebody to fill in a form then they're asking for trouble.

The sensible ones, who sell tangible goods, will pay for the conversion of a sale.

Maybe google should make a special option for such advertisers who wish to give $25 for filling in a form. They can have this whole verification period and inform publishers that they'll probably earn $0.01 from these clicks.

Not everybody should suffer because of fraudsters and advertisers who encourage them.

Green_Grass




msg:3476739
 2:58 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

"Likewise, some conversions are valid and some are not."

Then why pay ANYTHING at all? If the advertisers are stupid, why should publishers be blamed?

Why pay PARTLY for INVALID Conversions? Makes no sense to me. I will be happy to be convinced, but currently I am unable to grasp the logic.

If the buyer is asking for a refund later, G can take back the money paid from our accounts..but why this PART commission?

farmboy




msg:3476748
 3:36 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

Why pay PARTLY for INVALID Conversions? Makes no sense to me. I will be happy to be convinced, but currently I am unable to grasp the logic.

In mentioning "some publishers" it sounds like Google has some trips set up and if a publisher hits one, the referrals generated by that publisher will then receive the extra scrutiny.

Paying a reduced referral amount is a signal to the publisher that he is being watched. If his activities are valid, he'll soon achieve the full amount.

I suppose they could cut the publisher off completely during this time of increased scrutiny, but that would generate even more howls and complaints.

Once again, the rest of us will suffer, or have the potential to temporarily suffer, because of the few who care only about themselves and a quick dollar in their pocket.

On this forum, it will probably be easy to determine which publishers are generating suspicious conversions. They will be the first dog to bark, just like the "I've been banned" threads started by people who click on their own ads.

FarmBoy

europeforvisitors




msg:3476749
 3:38 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

The sensible ones, who sell tangible goods, will pay for the conversion of a sale.

It isn't that simple. Google's referral program isn't just for e-commerce transactions; in many cases, it's a lead-generation tool. Not all leads are of equal value. That's as true online as it is in the world of telemarketing, mailing lists, and magazine bingo cards.

Green_Grass




msg:3476754
 3:47 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

"first dog to bark"

You are being insulting. I am not a dog and I donot generate spurious conversions. I get only a few a month and mostly all are sales.

Just because, we are one of the first few to remark that this smart pricing to Referrals is not logical to us, does not automatically mean that we are thieves and that we should be banned.

Green_Grass




msg:3476757
 3:51 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

In fact., I can extend Farmboy's logic by saying that all those publishers experiencing smart pricing on their adSense accounts are sending fraud / non converting traffic and all these howlers should be banned by google..Who wants cr*p traffic. All publishers experiencing smart pricing should be ***&&***

europeforvisitors




msg:3476764
 4:01 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

Green_Grass, traffic quality isn't binary (0 or 1, on or off, wonderful or worthless). There's a spectrum of quality, and some advertisers may be perfectly happy to get mediocre leads at a discount price.

farmboy




msg:3476774
 4:23 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

...first few to remark that this smart pricing to Referrals is not logical to us, does not automatically mean that we are thieves and that we should be banned.

I think that is essentially Google's point. Just because a site generates suspicious activity doesn't automatically mean the publisher is doing something wrong and should be banned.

But it does evidently mean the site is going to get additional scrutiny.

FarmBoy

Hobbs




msg:3476785
 5:00 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

I foresee the Referrals 2.0 in the long run becoming either a vehicle for low paying advertisers finding desperate to earn few cents publishers, more like the current AdSense CPM, or a vehicle for Google to acquire new serious advertisers and gradually switching them over to their star product so far, vanilla PPC AdSense.

It has been clear from day one that this is a half-hearted uncooked low quality product, unloved and not given enough resources or even new ideas to give it a boost, the interface, the system behind it, how everything slowed down since it was launched, this looked more like a Yahoo kind of service than a Google, no bang no flare, even CJ is better thought out in it's process, Google should have taken a page off Microsoft's book and copied what works first then see how they can innovate further, or off Google's own book, acquire CJ and give it a touch of Google quality.

I would love to be proven wrong in the future, I stand to make a lot of money if I am.

farmboy




msg:3476790
 5:10 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

I would love to be proven wrong in the future, I stand to make a lot of money if I am.

To repeat what I wrote earlier, I think this is a step in the right direction.

I too hope the Referrals program continues to improve.

Months ago I wrote on this forum and over at the AdWords forum that I thought a lack of fraud control would keep a lot of advertisers away. This announcement at least shows an effort is being made, whether or not is is the proper effort is a subect for debate.

FarmBoy

Hobbs




msg:3476791
 5:11 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

Speaking of low quality, here are a couple of high quality ideas I would have thought Google would implement in a pay per conversion system:

A conversion is either a signup or a purchase:
- For signups: Make it compulsory for advertisers to use the Gmail system, even under their own domains, this way Google ca verify a signup.
- For Purchase: Make it compulsory for advertisers to use the Google checkout system.

Yes less advertisers will signup for this, but this would be a quality move onto the market, using and promoting existing Google products in the same time slowly gaining a more reliable long term market share, in short, offering what others cannot currently offer.

That would be inline with what I know of Google's sense of smart business & quality.

jomaxx




msg:3476795
 5:20 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

Then IMO that's their own risk and not my problem. If they want to pay $25 for somebody to fill in a form then they're asking for trouble.

No no no. What you're saying is that people should be allowed to generate fraudulent transactions. That would obviously mean a quick end to the entire business model, and we'd ALL be worse off.

Non-sales transactions can be faked. Sales transactions can also be faked, by making a purchase with a stolen credit card or simply by returning the item later. Advertisers need SOME kind of controls, but hopefully the process will be as transparent as possible. I'm still holding off on promoting referrals (via Google) because they're still solving major problems like this by the seat of their pants.

koan




msg:3476877
 7:59 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

I wonder why the biggest referal company, CJ, never needed this kind of approach? Is it because advertisers have the option to choose publishers manually?

And EFV, just saying, if everything was peachy, I don't think they would feel the need for such a thing, at least not at this stage where a lot of other things could be improved. It just seems that the advertisers big names aren't in the program.

europeforvisitors




msg:3476899
 8:49 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

I wonder why the biggest referal company, CJ, never needed this kind of approach? Is it because advertisers have the option to choose publishers manually?

Could be. Plus, most CJ "advertisers" are affiliate merchants who pay affiliate commissions on e-commerce transactions. There's some pay-per-lead, but not a whole lot.

And EFV, just saying, if everything was peachy, I don't think they would feel the need for such a thing, at least not at this stage where a lot of other things could be improved. It just seems that the advertisers big names aren't in the program.

Google's referral program is so low-profile that most adevrtisers, never mind publishers, probably haven't given it much thought. At this point, it's just a minor product extension, and for all we know, that may be all it ever will be.

jomaxx




msg:3476947
 10:50 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

FWIW, CJ does use this same approach. There are a lot of complaints about vendors reversing commissions.

Scurramunga




msg:3476954
 11:20 pm on Oct 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

If you are unhappy with referrals, vote is with your feet and walk away. Although this discussion is quite useful to all, especially newbies, it's no use complaining about something that won't change.

I tried referrals, it didn't work out for me and I dumped it. Gave it a second chance and once again I ended up dumping it. Now with this new issue of smart pricing, there is no chance whatsoever in the future that I will ever touch referrals again.

This 36 message thread spans 2 pages: 36 ( [1] 2 > >
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