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Smart marketing move. :-)
If they confirm that it's OK, then great. If they say NO GOOD, then re-arange your setup or continue at your own risk.
BTW, great tactic... do whatever works, it's your traffic after all.
The idea of cookie stuffing is BS, if someone doesn't click links on your site you will never get the sale regardless of whether that page is loaded into someone else's popup. On the other hand, if they click your link and then STILL don't buy, only to buy later on someone else's popup that just means you didn't do a good job at presenting/preselling the product... and therefore still won't make sales.
The idea of cookie stuffing is BS
Yeah, I'm not sure about the cookie stuffing thing either. Another idea I might start exploring would be to use frames and have the vendor aff frame at the top of the page and all my content in a frame right below it. The first thing they see is the product I want them to buy. Many of the browsers prevent popups anyway, so this would be an even better sure shot. I'm thinking boost sales by another 3-4 times. This would probably screw up my seo but who knows. I think i might try it. Nothing ventured nothing gained.
If the merchant site is displayed in a pop-up, a click is technically forced and cookie is set. That is all. It's just the way the tracking works. I know there is no ill intentions here. Merchants want you to do this, that is why CJ has designed a work around.
It's a great marketing move and it helps my guys a lot, but it also drives the merchant's EPC down, so if you have high volume they will notice.
You are right about the tracking working that way, and most of the networks don't like it when you do that... same reason why they sometimes frown upon PPC campaigns that go directly to the affiliate link.
On a side note, wsp9, don't do the frame... it's even more likely to get you kicked out of the affiliate network. Not only that, many of the sites include a frame breaking script in their homepage so this would only help to make your website totally unusable.
If there is anyway to find a new aff network that will allow you to promote the same/similar product with more freedom, switch.
If affiliate marketing turns into a game of who can pop the most windows and set the most cookies, it'll wreck the industry and we'll all be worse off in the long run.
and steal legitimately earned commissions from other affiliates.
this is not true. period.
The fact that the potential buyer LEFT your site without making a purchase means that you already lost the sale.
As soon as they leave your site, it's someone elses turn to TRY and sell that customer. If their marketing tactics are more aggresive or plain old better than yours, then they WILL make a sale where you failed.
It is totally fair. Every webmaster has a right to try and sell. Just because a visitor visited your site FIRST does NOT, I repeat NOT give you some sort of exclusive right to commissions from his eventual purchase.
LAST cookie wins the $$$, that's how it is and it's better that way.
If someone doesn't buy from my links while they are on my site, I LOSE and someone else has the same opportunity as me to make the sale.
It's fair, one of the only fair systems on the Internet... those who don't like it are just in denial or afraid of the competition, not trying to be rude, it's just a part of our industry (a good part).
competition is healthy.
As soon as they leave your site, it's someone elses turn to TRY and sell that customer.
Every webmaster has a right to try and sell. Just because a visitor visited your site FIRST does NOT, I repeat NOT give you some sort of exclusive right to commissions from his eventual purchase.
agreed 100% The key word there is sell. Forcing a cookie on someones machine is not selling.
If a cookie must be set by forcing a popup, then the site that launched the pop-up failed much more so than the site that generated a click to the merchant that did not result in an immediate sale.
There is no reason whatsoever that an affiliate setting cookies through popups should not be thrown out of the network. If a site can't get users to actively click on links to a merchant site, the site shouldn't generate any revenue from affiliate marketing.
What's the workaround?
It's call "advanced links" Merchants will be pleased to set it up for you. :)
bkirsch, I wasn't trying to say anything bad in regards to your post (hope it didn't offend you), I was just pointing out the fact that affiliate networks have some messed up logic sometimes.
No offense taken. I was just trying to help. :)
Just FYI, I run the affiliate, email and lead gen teams at LMB. We are on of CJ's biggest customers. :)
Anyway I just checked the CJ publisher agreement and forced clickthroughs are explicitly prohibited.
Yup, that's why it's not a good idea to use them unless you're ready to gamble with your account. :p
On a side note, some webmasters love popups to promote products/services/generate leads... I think the problem is that affiliate networks (no, more so the MERCHANTS) don't offer enough creative. If you want to promote a certain product via popup, but don't have adequate banners/pictures/etc then you have no other choice but to push the aff link and send the visitors to the merchant's site... and if I have to send them off of my site, I want to have my cookie loaded.
Now I'm not trying to defend the webmasters that are just poping up windows in hopes that they'll get some cash from the thousands of cookies they are loading, I am defending those that are genuinely pushing/selling products.
I think it's ironic that some of the affiliates that complain about parasites stealing 'their' commish are the same ones that think its OK to take commission from other honest affiliates.
On a bigger and even more important note however, pops hurt our ENTIRE industry and EVERYONES income - even the ones serving the pops. So if you serve pops you are hurting your own pocketbook. WHY? Consumers are bombarded with pops and don't like them. Many of the pops are served by adware and spyware, therefore creating more consumers that buy anti-spyware, internet security and firewall software. Most of this software blocks CJ and other major network ads.
MANY of these programs also delete affiliate cookies, which means it does not matter who set the cookie - the merchant will get the sale but NO affiliate will be paid.
You do have a lot of good points though Linda. Pops do push people into buying/using anti-pop, anti-spyware software that messes with our cookies.
The main problem with that is not the cookie deletion however, it's the fact that the aff networks (and more importantly US) are not doing anything to design a NEW way of tracking aff clicks and commissions.
As much as we like to work hard to make websites, ads and so on to sell, we don't do such a good job of lobbying to change the tracking standards... it's an old, out of date system and we're to blame for not demanding changes.
As for the complaining about parasites and what not, I don't complain about it, I try and get sales when I can, if I see that something is not right I change programs until I find one that works. It can be a pain in the a** but complaining isn't going to make the problem go away, and like I said, it's the technology that makes it possible. Until we get new tracking technology we will continue to be plagued by the same problems.
On a side note, pops work for many affiliates, that's why they use 'em. Everyone needs to test and see what brings in the dollars. There are a million programs out there and always a way to make a buck. Fair/good/bad/scummy, it doesn't matter, every business or profession has it's good and bad, overall this one is still getting better.
I rarely disagree with you, but on this issue I'm scratching my head to be honest.
Here is where we agree, I buy that spyware and adware use pops and we have agreed on this is issue for a long time. Those pops are horrible.
Cookie Stuffing and forced clicks are clearly unacceptable and anyone found doing it is kicked out of my program if they knownly forced a click.
However, CJ, LinkShare, Kowabunga and others all have work arounds for pop-ups and pop-unders. Every major advertiser buys them and they run on big sites. Moreover, there are tons of clean ad networks like tribal fusion, specific media, undertone networks, etc that use pops and in fact are the most effective display ads there are for those networks and the most pricey as a result.
Is it the prettiest advertiser? Nah...but this is direct responce marketing..isn't not pretty.
So, if CJ has a work around, why should affiliates not use it. Pops works -- not as well as they used to, but still better than any banner size. I want my affiliates to have the same advantages our media buyers have. In fact, personally, I want them to have more because they are bearing all the risk of running the ad.
Lets go back to the first post on this thread:
So, I have a site devoted to a certain topic with aff links to products through commission junction. Lately, I've been experimenting with having an 800x600 popup that shows the product right when the page loads up. Sales have doubled, so I like it. It draws people right away to why I want them on the page/site in the first place. Links in key areas have worked but this works better. It is aggressive marketing but to the point and very effective. So, anyone know if CJ minds this kind of thing?
Why should an advanced link in CJ not be an option?
Hope all is well!