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However, after having queried it again and again, they have now admitted it was not tracking. They have now removed it from the network.
They are refusing to compensate us for showing hundreds of thousands of their adverts and not earning a cent in commission because the tracking was not working. Our emails are not being responded to. The phone number on their site for affiliates is dead.
It was not our fault THEIR link was not tracking, so we should they get free advertising on our sites?
This has made be furious: they are a wealthy company and I shouldn't have to pay the price for their ineptitude.
I would ordinarily have accepted it as just another disappointment, but I have been tricked, conned and lied to by too many 'respectable' merchants online and will not allow another internet company to scam me.
There are just too many merchants out there who just expect affiliates to put up with tracking not working. Because they can hide behind the anonymity of email, they can get away with enjoying free exposure on affiliate sites without paying up the promised commission.
What can we do?
Your legal position is that you don't have one.
Gotta say that you've been a little naive though - if I don't get a sale after a few days and I'm convinced something is amiss, I'll make a test purchase, not let it stew for ages as you appear to have done.
I mean no offence by the above, but have posted it in the belief that it may help others avoid similar problems in the future.
Thank you for the responses. This matter is going to be taken very far as I have finally received a response from the Affiliate Manager saying "I could just as easily turn this around and say you are trying to con me by trying to get commission on sales you didn’t make."
They have gained free advertising on our sites, don't even have the decency to offer us a few dollars in compensation, and now say they could accuse me in return of trying to con 'em?
I have been in affiliate marketing full-time for seven years and have the utmost integrity. I can't believe this merchant has the audacity to come back at me like that.
She just expects me to back down and accept it. I would have - had this not been the squillionth time a merchant has tried to wriggle out of paying me my hard-earned commission through some tracking flaw. Just discovered 10 minutes ago that the search box for thehut.com at CJ doesn't track - you can view the HTML code there for yourself and see it doesn't have any affiliate code in it. We showed that thousands of times as well for no reward.
When you say it didn't track properly, are you saying that you saw zero clickthroughs for hundreds of thousands of impressions?
When your suspicions were aroused, why didn't you check the EPC for that link to see if any other publisher in the CJ network made any money off that link?