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View Full Version : Amazon.com: New referral fee structure, or classic?


demae
12-23-2002, 08:53 PM
I got the following from Amazon.com. Which do you think is better?

---

For Q1 2003, we're giving you the choice of two different referral fee options. Please carefully review both of the options listed below, and then choose the option that will work best for you.

Option #1 is the "classic referral fee structure" that was in place in Q3 2002.

- 5% of the sale of Amazon retail items
- 5% of the sale of products sold by ToysRUs.com, BabiesRUs.com, and Imaginarium.com
- 2.5% of the sale of all other Marketplace products sold by third parties
- 15% for qualifying book links

Option #2 is a "tiered referral fee structure" that compensates you for the number (and type) of items sold through your links, and for putting an "Easy Link" on your homepage.

- You will earn between 4.5% and 8% on Amazon retail items
- You will earn 5% of the sale of products sold by ToysRUs.com, BabiesRUs.com, and Imaginarium.com
- You will also earn 2.5% of the sale of all other Marketplace products sold by third parties
- You can still earn 15% for qualifying book links
- You agree to add an Easy Link to your homepage(s)
- You agree to sell a minimum number of non-media items. See the table below for details

Total Items Amazon Items Minimum Non-Media
Shipped Referral Fees Items Shipped
1-25 4.5% 0
26-75 5.0% 2
76-250 5.5% 8
251-3,500 6.0% 35
3,501-10,000 6.5% 500
10,001-75,000 7.0% 1,400
75,001-175,000 7.5% 10,000
175,001+ 8.0% 20,000

jkcity
12-23-2002, 09:53 PM
can anyone tell me what an "easy link" is?


I also don't like the starting off on 4.5% on the second tier system as it just seems stupid to me considering that they require you to do more stuff.

edit after reading amazon site:

"If you want the tiered plan, you need to opt in by January 20th! "

Ok is this the one and only time I get to opt-in?

if so they might be using it as a way to get alot of people to switch thinking they may eventually get to these higher commission rates but end up only earning 4.5% they have just reduced the amounts they pay ou to small affilates which I am sure there is many.

I also think its the worng time to ask people to switch as anyoen who gets under 75 sales will not be getting a better deal, but after christmas season many people will have gone over this and they may presume they can do this next quarter as well.

I think i am just going to choose the first tier for now, cause I don't make enough sales from them now to make it anywhere beneficial to be locked into having todo certain things, but I suppose anyone who can get enoughs ales to push into the 6% commission rate it will probably be worth it, as long as you sell enough non-media items, which I also don't, I have sold toys recently but I don't expect to sell many come january.

jkcity
12-23-2002, 10:09 PM
ok sorry for the two posts but I have already added something to the other one :).

I just seen them easy links they require you to have on your pages, I assume every page, no way will I make one of them appear on every page.

the esay links come in

468x60 banner
120x600 skyscaper
120x240 mini skyscaper
180 x 150 box

this should be pointed out as well

"Also, please note that the table above is only a summary of the two fee structures we intend to offer for the first quarter of 2003. Other terms and conditions will apply, which will be detailed in an updated Associates Program Operating Agreement that we intend to publish on the site on or about December 31, 2002. In the event of any conflict or inconsistency between anything on this page and the Operating Agreement, the terms of the Operating Agreement will control."

so they are allowing us to chose our plan before we evan know the full details, so I would suggest nobody choose a plan till they release all info in case the selection is set in stone.

also

"Please note that in order to qualify for any "tier" of referral fees, you have to satisfy both the minimum unit sale commitment AND the minimum non-media (i.e., non-book, music or video (including VHS and DVD) unit sale commitment. "

is that just me or does that say that music and video's are classed as non media?

rbacal
12-23-2002, 11:40 PM
They've really done something so stupid, I think they might yet change their minds.

easylinks are a small selection of absolutely hideous creatives for non-media.

Also, non-media items are like toys. CD's, DVDS, videos are all media, as are book.

The firestorm i just beginning.

Unless you actually sell a lot of non-media items you HAVE to go classic, because in order to reach higher tiers you have to sell BOTH items total, and non-media items.

I was planning on getting in bed a little more with them, since we've had a great quarter. Now, if this continues, we'll probably be cutting back since there is now no incentive for us to sell more items.

...and our visitors aren't there to buy toys or garden gnomes.

I suggest concerned folks take the time to give their opinions on the amazon comment boards.

Nintendo
12-23-2002, 11:48 PM
The $10 cap is back, with Option 2 you have to sell more items to go up to the next tier, and the Easy Link has no content related to your site. If you look at the thread (http://forums.prosperotechnologies.com/n/mb/message.asp?webtag=am-associhelp&msg=2844.1&maxT=2) about it on the Amazon boards, you'll notice that we all hate the new system. *sniff* It was good while it lasted!!!!! :D:D I'll be at the Option 1.

Timo
12-24-2002, 08:12 AM
I think Amazon will probably think things through (I hope?)

Unfortunately for us we have to take the classic option, because our users dont buy non media items.

With all the used books in the marketplace driving down the average commission, perhaps Yahoo had it right when it dropped Amazon and went with Barnes & Noble.

*just took a look at barnes and noble:

Books (including calendars, audiobooks, and out-of-print books):
Receive 5% when you sell up to $20,000
Receive 6% when you sell above $20,000
Receive 7% when you sell above $1,000,000 :eek:

Czar
12-24-2002, 08:28 AM
Originally posted by Timo
*just took a look at barnes and noble:

Books (including calendars, audiobooks, and out-of-print books):
Receive 5% when you sell up to $20,000
Receive 6% when you sell above $20,000
Receive 7% when you sell above $1,000,000 :eek: Boy. You'd hate to sell $999,999 worth of goods, wouldn't you? Just $1 extra in gross sales nets the referrer a bonus $10,000 in referral fees.

Then again, I suppose a $60,000 referral bounty wouldn't exactly be a disappointment.

Concerning Amazon, I'm most upset about the revival of the $10 cap. This hardly makes it worthwhile promoting higher-end products and services through the company.

Timo
12-24-2002, 08:47 AM
:)

I find Amazons move very frustrating. the $10 cap - ouch

The big bonus about B&Ns program is you can buy through your own links and still get commissions. if I get to the 999,999 you watch how fast I whip out the credit card lol.

I was looking at Chapters-Indigo in Commission junction, a Canadian company.


A 5$$$$ earner!
3 month EPC $14.94 (view trend)
7 day EPC $35.64
***Charge-back percent 17.50% (view trend)**** :eek:

Commish: 15.0% of Sale :p

Remember this is in Canadian $$.
To the U.S. folks, $1 U.S. = about $1.54 cdn as of yesterday. I think we are close to on par with the AUS Dollar

Rhea
12-24-2002, 10:06 AM
I've had a nice quarter with Amazon, but I've had a lot of frustration with their program. First, their stats are unreliable and aren't delivered in anything approximating real time. Second, they keep tweaking the commission structure and that makes me extremely uncomfortable. Finally, I don't like being offered this type of option. It sounds a bit like the 'lady and the tiger' puzzle. If I guess right, I'll be happy. If I guess wrong, I'll be unhapy. Sheesh...I don't have a stinking crystal ball!

Like Timo I've been experimenting a bit with chapters.indigo. They have a nice affiliate program, a good selection of products, and their website is affiliate friendly...which Amazon's is not. Methinks it's time for a change.

emmzee
12-24-2002, 12:31 PM
I wonder what happens if you're on plan 2 and don't sell the required # of non-media items? Like say you sell 100 products, but only sell 5 non-media items. Do you lose all of the affiliate $$$ you've earned, or what? That would be quite the kick in the butt ..... :eek: I think I'll stick with plan #1 ... for now ... until I can find someplace else that has a better video games affiliate program ;)

rbacal
12-24-2002, 01:26 PM
My reading of the non-media issue is that if you don't meet BOTH of the media and non-media commission, then you go to the next lowest tier where you have met both requirements.

Let's say you sell 10,000 books and 0 other items. You get 4.5 percent, since you didn't sell the 2 required other items.

demae
12-24-2002, 03:24 PM
If I read correctly, both plans give 15% on qualifying (I assume that means directly-linked and not out of print?) book links.

So, people who mostly link directly to books would make about the same amount of money either way, right?

Rhea
12-24-2002, 03:38 PM
Demae wrote:So, people who mostly link directly to books would make about the same amount of money either way, right?Not necessarily. The only way you'd get 15% is if the visitor clicked on your link and immediately ordered the book. Amazon would shoot you down to the tiered amount if the visitor clicked on anything else prior to putting the book in his or her cart. And...the books has to meet the criteria of being discounted (I'm not sure about these numbers) 10 to 30 percent.

So if a competitor of Amazon's is offering 15 percent across the board, and if they convert as least as well as Amazon...then it's a better deal. I think I'll do better with chapters.indigo for direct product links. And direct product links are largely responsible for my sales on amazon, allposters, and CJ. I do very poorly with general links to subject types, best sellers, and banners.

joma
12-24-2002, 06:25 PM
I'm likely going to go with the classic. The tiered payments they're offering are lower than this quarter's, and the additional commission won't be enough to justify putting those huge banners on my homepage.

joma
12-24-2002, 06:32 PM
P.S. Is there even a way of finding out how many "non-media" items you sold in the current quarter? Do marketplace items count?

Czar
12-24-2002, 06:59 PM
Originally posted by joma
P.S. Is there even a way of finding out how many "non-media" items you sold in the current quarter? Do marketplace items count? I'm going to assume that Amazon will break these out once the new system and TOS is in place. Until then, you can enter your reporting section and click on the 'Traffic reports' link to produce an itemized list of the items sold through your links.

alteredskate
12-26-2002, 04:43 PM
I voted classic, and I think I made the right choice.

Timo
12-26-2002, 09:04 PM
I dont intend to make a decision until I have to. January 20th ?

Who knows what is going to be released in this new operating agreement on Dec. 31st, so I will wait until then.

I am hoping my testing will make the choice a moot point :D

Rhea, one thing that has me concerned about indigo is their chargeback. Looking at their history, it seemed to start in June, and just kept growing. I know they were going through a restructuring, (chapters indigo merger) but for it to continue into december at 17% seems a bit high. There was even talk of them supplying amazon.ca, which could explain a shortfall, if Amazon negotiated first rights.

We have never had an item returned in 4 years on the net, so if we see some returns, I will definitely be dropping their marketing department a line.

WildComputer
12-26-2002, 11:24 PM
I will wait to the last moment, but expect to choose classic

While I believe that we would earn more from the new program (e.g. non-media requirements easily met, slight higher % rate commission), I do not believe it is in our company's best interest to give what would easily be many millions of impressions for the easy links just to earn a bit more thru Amazon

I would rather keep our home pages to monetize as we see fit, and forgo this extra commission

I also assume the non-media requirements is to increase Amazon's revenue for electronics, computers, etc. The $10 cap seems to run contrary to this, as the incentive seems to be either to promote items under $200 or to find alternative merchants for computers etc which have a fixed % rate and no cap.

Rhea
12-27-2002, 06:38 AM
Hi Timo, I'm concerned about the chargeback status of chapters.indigo also. I think it might be useful to send them an email through CJ and ask them about it. If they don't reply...bad sign. If they do reply and have a reasonable explanation...good sign. There are so many reasons that could account for a high charge-back.

Another concern I have is whether Americans will buy from a company that lists its prices in Canadian dollars. This could be an interesting social experiment! lol!

But...at 15 percent commission I only have to sell a third as much as I've sold with Amazon to make the same money. And I don't have to kowtow to Amazon's ridiculous bait-and-switch scheme. I don't like rewarding bad affiliate practices by going along for the ride. I truly believe that Amazon set us up in Q4 with the increased commission structure as a ploy to get us to work their program heavily before they pulled the rug out from under us. People who invested a lot of time and effort in building their Amazon stores will be reluctant to dump their program now...and I think that's what Amazon was counting on. Nasty behavior for a major affiliate program. Unprofessional at best...slimey at worst.

Czar
12-27-2002, 08:51 AM
Wild, I'm guessing that a major element leading to the non-media term is the push to build a rapid uptake in their new apparel division. Amazon has a lot of big brands to court through the experiment, and unless they produce some numbers in the vicinity of their core categories, Gap and others may instead opt to go it alone. Anyway, just a thought.

Rhea, although US residents are more familiar with the US:Can exchange rate than those of most other nations, I do imagine that your sales volume will decrease to a notable degree.

Quick case study: One of my clients is an Australian-based manufacturer of magnetic health products who buys online, magazine and other print media around the world. Only one of their local promotions (sponsorship of sporting events) overtly builds the brand, while most of their efforts rather pitch the products and the results that they produce. As such, the discrepancy I'm about to mention doesn't come from a major difference in the methods they market to different communities. Anyway, although about 20% of the website's visitors are based in the USA or Canada, all prices on the site and shopping cart are listed in AUD (and this is the only currency the business can accept through their current merchant account), these visitors account for only 1-2% of the site's monthly sales on average. This is despite the fact that the exchange rate works in their favor to a dramatic margin (whereby products are effectively available at discounts of 20-50% through the exchange alone).

I'm sure that the presence of Canadian prices in the cart won't be quite the weakness that's evidented above, but it will very likely prove a hindrance to some.

BTW, I'd love to hear about your results if you do go ahead and switch all of your links over.

Timo
12-27-2002, 08:57 AM
I just dropped an email to Indigo-Chapters so lets see what happens. I told them in the email I would be sharing info in this thread.

If they only ship to Canada, I guess I will have to build a new site or geotarget ads. The former seems more likely since I have content intermingled with ads. <sigh>

another thought:
Looking down the road for amazon, what happens when they have amazons in 20 countries? Are we supposed to have a link to every one of them on a page to ensure commish?seems laughable but entirely possible.

Wildcomputer, I agree. Amazon doesn't get my front page without paying $$.

demae
12-27-2002, 11:39 AM
I just dropped an email to Indigo-Chapters so lets see what happens. I told them in the email I would be sharing info in this thread.

Perhaps Indigo could be persuaded to allow the use of a special affiliate linking code which sets a cookie that instructs the site to then display all prices in US$ instead of Can$? Or they can just display all prices in both currencies, if they're getting significant traffic from the US.

BTW, how does Indigo's shipping cost and shipping delay time compare to Amazon's, for customers living in the US?

Rhea
12-28-2002, 07:20 AM
I went through the books category on CJ and made myself a little chart of the various merchants including data like 3 Month
Network EPC, 7 Day Network EPC, Sale/Lead, Cookie Duration, and Reversals. I removed a couple of merchants because they're really not booksellers.

It's in html and I don't know how to get it to display properly in VB, so you'll have to copy/paste it into your fave html editor. Enjoy!

<table cellSpacing="1" cellPadding="2" border="0" width="575">
<TBODY>
<tr bgColor="#cccccc">
<td width="163">Advertiser </td>
<td noWrap width="86">3 Month<br>
Network EPC </td>
<td noWrap width="86">7 Day<br>
Network EPC </td>
<td width="50">Sale </td>
<td width="38">Lead </td>
<td width="52">Cookie<br>
Duration</td>
<td width="60">Reversals</td>
<td width="60">Product Links</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">abebooks.co.uk</td>
<td width="86">$2.46 </td>
<td width="86">$6.04 </td>
<td width="50">5.00% </td>
<td width="38">$0.75 </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60"></td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Abebooks.com</td>
<td width="86">$2.05 </td>
<td width="86">$8.96 </td>
<td width="50">5.00% </td>
<td width="38">$0.75 </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60"></td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Allworth Press</td>
<td width="86">$2.99 </td>
<td width="86">$3.01 </td>
<td width="50">15.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">180</td>
<td width="60">73.60</td>
<td width="60">188</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">BiggerBooks.com</td>
<td width="86">$11.02 </td>
<td width="86">$11.98 </td>
<td width="50">5.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">30</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60"></td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">BookCloseouts.com</td>
<td width="86">$9.87 </td>
<td width="86">$3.49 </td>
<td width="50">10.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60">6</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Books-For-Cooks.com</td>
<td width="86">$0.55 </td>
<td width="86">$1.16 </td>
<td width="50">5.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">30</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60"></td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">BOOKSAMILLION.COM</td>
<td width="86">$6.18 </td>
<td width="86">$6.38 </td>
<td width="50">3.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">6.00</td>
<td width="60"></td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Chapters.Indigo.ca</td>
<td width="86">$14.94 </td>
<td width="86">$25.30 </td>
<td width="50">15.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">60</td>
<td width="60">17.50</td>
<td width="60">1,000+</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Doublediscount.com</td>
<td width="86">$2.08 </td>
<td width="86">$6.81 </td>
<td width="50">6.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">1</td>
<td width="60">17.00</td>
<td width="60">1,000+</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">eBay.co.uk</td>
<td width="86">$8.73 </td>
<td width="86">$8.85 </td>
<td width="50">N/A </td>
<td width="38">$4.50 </td>
<td width="52">30</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60"></td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">eBooks.com</td>
<td width="86">$0.99 </td>
<td width="86">$0.00 </td>
<td width="50">9.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">3.10</td>
<td width="60">1,000+</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">ecampus.com</td>
<td width="86">$17.10 </td>
<td width="86">$14.73 </td>
<td width="50">5.00% </td>
<td width="38">$1.75 </td>
<td width="52">30</td>
<td width="60">10.90</td>
<td width="60">1,000+</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">eHarlequin.com</td>
<td width="86">$8.60 </td>
<td width="86">$9.68 </td>
<td width="50">5.00% </td>
<td width="38">$1.00 </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">6.80</td>
<td width="60">34</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">ElephantBooks.com</td>
<td width="86">$3.80 </td>
<td width="86">$2.42 </td>
<td width="50">12.50% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60"></td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">nEntrepreneur.com</td>
<td width="86">$2.10 </td>
<td width="86">$6.51 </td>
<td width="50">10.00% </td>
<td width="38">$2.00 </td>
<td width="52">30</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60">14</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Grab A Bargain.com</td>
<td width="86">$0.13 </td>
<td width="86">$0.00 </td>
<td width="50">$1.50 </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">30</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60"></td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Guideposts</td>
<td width="86">$0.62 </td>
<td width="86">$5.69 </td>
<td width="50">25.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">25</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60"></td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Half Price Computer Books</td>
<td width="86">$2.60 </td>
<td width="86">$5.10 </td>
<td width="50">10.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">2.30</td>
<td width="60">354</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Half.com</td>
<td width="86">$11.97 </td>
<td width="86">$10.74 </td>
<td width="50">$5.00 </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">15</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60"></td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Ignatius Press</td>
<td width="86">$15.17 </td>
<td width="86">$19.34 </td>
<td width="50">10.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60">1,000+</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Mailordercomics.com</td>
<td width="86">$3.37 </td>
<td width="86">$6.24 </td>
<td width="50">10.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">30</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60">193</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Motorbooks.com</td>
<td width="86">$0.92 </td>
<td width="86">$1.24 </td>
<td width="50">6.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">0.00</td>
<td width="60">1,000+</td>
</tr>
<tr bgColor="#ffffff">
<td width="163">Nelson Direct</td>
<td width="86">$5.12 </td>
<td width="86">$5.72 </td>
<td width="50">18.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">365</td>
<td width="60">3.80</td>
<td width="60">34</td>
</tr>
<tr>
<td width="163">One Minute Millionaire</td>
<td width="86">$6.08 </td>
<td width="86">$24.10 </td>
<td width="50">50.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">180</td>
<td width="60">1.80</td>
<td width="60">1</td>
</tr>
<tr>
<td width="163">Teacher Created Materials</td>
<td width="86">$1.89 </td>
<td width="86">$3.34 </td>
<td width="50">10.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">0.20</td>
<td width="60">1,000+</td>
</tr>
<tr>
<td width="163">TotalCampus.com</td>
<td width="86">$1.06 </td>
<td width="86">$1.63 </td>
<td width="50">5.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">3</td>
<td width="60">37.20</td>
<td width="60">3</td>
</tr>
<tr>
<td width="163">World Book Store</td>
<td width="86">$9.78 </td>
<td width="86">$0.55 </td>
<td width="50">10.00% </td>
<td width="38">N/A </td>
<td width="52">45</td>
<td width="60">0.0</td>
<td width="60"></td>
</tr>
</table>

[EDIT: Added a column for quantity of Product Links.]

Czar
12-28-2002, 10:07 AM
Wonderful work, Rhea. :)

For those who'd prefer to peruse an online version of the table, feel free to visit the following URL:
http://www.net-ads.com/bookstores.html
(note the link at the bottom to Rhea's main site :angel: )

If nothing else, hopefully the presence of a growing list of competitors will force Amazon to continue improving its affiliate program, rather than taking steps backward.

Rhea
12-28-2002, 11:27 AM
Awww! Thanks for the link, Czar! :D (Nice Google PR, BTW!)

I just figured there was no point in us all doing the same work to try to figure out which booksellers were worth checking out in depth. (Ain't I sweet?)

In the meantime, fickle creature that I am, I've signed up with www.powells.com. I've converted a few of my Amazon links to Powells links and it's almost ridiculously easy. On the Amazon discussion boards Powells is being promoted as a more affiliate friendly alternative to Amazon.

Powells has a 10% commish on all products. I don't know what the cookie duration is or what their reversal stats are like. I'm going to take a chance on them. I really like chapters.indigo's program on CJ but the USD to CAD conversion thingie is going to seriously impact sales from the US, I'm afraid. I'm already using them for a couple of links and will continue to do so for items I can't find elsewhere.

I'm also going to look really carefully at all the CJ bookseller affiliates on the list I made who have in excess of 1,000 product links. I will keep Amazon around for some types of links, but over time, unless they get their act together, they're going to be phased out.

The only way we affiliates can vote is with our feet. They balk...we walk! ;)

WildComputer
12-28-2002, 01:35 PM
I am wondering if any other book (or other multi product vendors selling electronics, software, magazines etc.) offer XML or other data feeds to get the product data? I do not have time to manually retrieve lots of individual product links.

Timo
12-28-2002, 09:22 PM
OK here is the response from indigo-chapters

Question:

We noticed an increase in chargebacks, starting in June, and peaking at 17% in December. Can you explain the reasons for this? Is it due to increase in fraud, lack of inventory, merger pains etc?

Response:

There are lots of reasons for reversal of sales; such as returns,
insufficient funds, customer cancelled order, book has gone out of print or OSI, etc.

Question:

Where do you ship to?

Answer:

We ship to the following countries:

Canada
United States
Australia
Belgium
Bermuda
Denmark
Finland
France
Germany
Greece
Ireland
Israel
Italy
Japan
Mexico
New Zealand
Norway
South Africa
Sweden
Switzerland
United Kingdom

If you ship to the U.S. would you be willing to add a USD currency
converter?

We are a Canadian company so unfortunately we list our products in Canadian funds.

Thankyou
Tonya


Some thoughts:

I remember Vito's post about selling products in Cdn$. He felt it was a competitive advantage to him because U.S. purchasers got a huge discount due to the exchange rate.

Indigo certainly seems to be in the top earners in both 7 day and 3month EPC. 60 day cookie much better than amazons!

demae
12-28-2002, 09:26 PM
> If you ship to the U.S. would you be willing to add a USD currency converter?
>
> We are a Canadian company so unfortunately we list our products in Canadian funds.

What kind of answer is that? The fact that they're a Canadian company doesn't preclude them from programming a USD currency converter on their website.

Timo
12-28-2002, 09:35 PM
tell me about it <sigh>.

They didnt answer why their chargebacks started in June either.

I am sure things like insufficient funds and books going out of print started long before June, unless thats when they joined CJ :confused:

nope: Joined: August 15, 2001

shipping particulars:

http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/article.asp?artcode=ship&Section=Home&Cat=&Lang=en

Rhea
12-28-2002, 10:46 PM
Thanks for sharing the email from chapters.indigo, Timo.

chapters.indigo has a wonderful opportunity to take advantage of what seems to be a mass exodus from Amazon. Too bad they're not geared up to making it easy for international customers to purchase their products. I don't see any info on their site where non-Canadian customers can get a price quote in converted currency.

So, how would an American, for instance, pay for a product from chapters.indigo? It shouldn't be too difficult for chapters.indigo to have something on their sales completion page that would use that day's CAD/USD conversion rate to inform the customer of the amount that will appear on their charge card. Also, if I remember correctly, there would be a customs fee for items shipped from Canada to the US.

Powells is looking better by the minute.

Here's a link that gives current currency conversion rates http://finance.yahoo.com/m5?a=1&s=USD&t=CAD&c=0

Timo
12-28-2002, 11:35 PM
Perhaps the answer is just send your canadian users to indigo.chapters, and send your U.S. traffic to powels, just the same as you would send users to either amazon.com and amazon.ca.

If you have to run two seperate affiliate programs in amazon to ensure you get your commish, might as well send Canadians to indigo to get the 15% and 60 day cookie.

Canadians account for about 15% of our users, large enough to warrant us testing indigo.

I am not sure about the customs fees. I will ask in my next email.

If others want to drop questions in this thread I will copy them all down in an email and let indigo answer them all in one shot and paste it here in the forum. ( I disclose in the email that I will paste the answers in this forum)

To give some time for q's to accumulate, I will send the email to them on Jan 2nd.

Tim

jnestor
12-29-2002, 03:51 PM
They likely don't list prices in USD because they don't charge them in USD. Typically the way it works when you're there in person is that they charge your credit card in Canadian dollars and the credit card company converts that to USD and bills you in USD. The exact exchange rate used will depend on exactly which card you use and what bank issued that card.

Now they could always offer a USD price and charge your card in USD. Certainly more work for them but a reasonable thing for them to do if they do a lot of business in the US. I know that I get CDs from a canadian company and they offer both canadian and USD prices. They also ship their US orders from the US though the box comes marked "product of Canada". With this arrangement at least they don't charge any duty.

rbacal
12-29-2002, 11:42 PM
Couple notes. First, I don't believe there is any incentive for chapters to sell to the U.S. OR, more importantly, for international customers to buy from Chapters. I think you will find that for someone in the U.S., it's going to be cheaper all around to buy from an American company, when you take into account shipping costs.

For books, the exchange rate is not an incentive because books are usually dual priced in Can/US dollars. So for example, the cover price of one of my books is U.S. 18.95 and Can. 28.95.

Chapters sell this book online for cover price, while amazon.ca charges 24.95. Chapters is probably also charging an extra 7% GST on all purchases AND shipping is higher to the U.S.

So, from the U.S. customer's perspective, it will cost more, take longer and may end up as a customs hassle.

Which is why your aren't going to see Chapters make much of an effort to hit the U.S. market, because they have no competitive advantages AT ALL.

They are have not been historically well managed, in fact, having been in the lap of bankruptcy before Indigo bailed them out (if I recall correctly). And, to be a bit biased here, I'm a Canadian author and they have 2 of my 4 books available, recently doubled from 1.

rbacal
12-29-2002, 11:45 PM
sorry, should have included this to be clearer about exchange rates and incentives.

Some things are worth buying in Canada, if you are in the U.S. and some things aren't. Books aren't. Computers might be. It obviously comes down to the degree to which the Canadian and American prices in quoted dollars come together.

Tourism in Canada is probably a great deal. Because of the way books are done in North America, the differences in prices make books more expensive here, even if they have been printed here.