Affiliate Summit & Data Feeds

January 18, 2010

I’ve had lots of great conversations about data feeds in the last 24 hours. Advertisers (merchants) and publishers (affiliates) recognize the value of data feeds, but it seems they’re just getting going. If merchants are submitting data feeds to CJ, Linkshare, ShareASale, or Google Affiliate Network, the feeds are very basic. If affiliates are using data feeds, they’re more advanced than most.

So there’s some great potential, but data feeds just seem to be an alternative marketing tool in the affiliate space. In fact, I actually talked with a representative from a well known merchant last night who is responsible for data feeds/shopping engines as well as affiliates and the person’s title was ‘alternative’ online marketing… Got a kick out of that!

My panel is this morning. Will let you know how it goes and recap the main discussion points.


@ Affiliate Summit West – Data Feeds

January 17, 2010

If you’re not at the conference, check out the #asw10 on twitter. So far, so good. I was here 2 years back and wasn’t that impressed. This conference seems to be much more professional, organized.

Love that the first two sessions I’ve attended have already mentioned data feeds:
Merchant Challenges in the Affiliate Space & Affiliate Program Case Studies: Strategies and Practices (see agenda)

The importance of data feeds in the affiliate industry has definitely grown over the last couple. I know that super affiliates thrive off of high quality data feeds, but it seems that the affiliate masses now understand the value of category/product/sku information in data feeds. Seems like the affiliate networks need to put together some case studies about the use of data feeds.


Meet at Affiliate Summit West Next Week

January 12, 2010

I’ll be speaking at Affiliate Summit West next week in Vegas. Arriving Sunday afternoon and leaving Tuesday evening. On a panel Monday @ 11:30am Monday. Will be talking about data feeds with Scott Jangro (MechMedia), Larry Adams (Google Affiliate Network), and Shergul Arshad (StyleFeeder). We’ll discuss “the current state of datafeeds and industry progress, best practices, and moving toward standards.” Should be a solid interactive session.

My schedule is a little tight, but if any merchants want to get together during the conference to discuss data feeds or SingleFeed, let me know.
Email: brian @ comparisonengines dot com.

Thanks!
Look forward to seeing everyone!
-brian


Yahoo! Product Submit Replaced by PriceGrabber

January 11, 2010

This morning, Yahoo! Product Submit merchants were notified that as of March 11, 2010, Yahoo! Shopping is partnering with PriceGrabber. At that time, merchants will no longer be able to submit to Yahoo! Product Submit to list products on Yahoo! Shopping, but must submit through PriceGrabber. If merchants don’t have an account with PriceGrabber and want to make sure their listings remain live on Yahoo! Shopping after March 11, they should sign up with PriceGrabber ASAP.

View the email notification.

Yahoo! has released this help page that will answer most questions.

This is a bittersweet end to Yahoo! Shopping, considering the effort they made to revamp the site in 2007-2008, but not surprising given the Bing/Yahoo! search deal. I assumed that Bing Cashback would replace Yahoo! Product Submit, so I got that one wrong. Congrats to Sean and the PriceGrabber team for grabbing this deal in a crowded market (Shopping.com, Shopzilla, and NexTag all have partner programs).

PriceGrabber can and should play up this partnership. PriceGrabber has hundreds of partners, and I believe this would be the third partnership involving another well know or big shopping engine brand: AOL Search/Shopping and MySimon being the others (yes, there are some smaller deals, but I think these are the ones that count). Yahoo! Shopping consistently is one of the most trafficked shopping engines, but merchants should know that while consumers might flock to Yahoo! Shopping (because of incredible exposure throughout Yahoo! Search and smaller vertical sites like Yahoo! Tech), SingleFeed’s stats (covering hundreds of merchants) show that merchants don’t get the traffic and sales that you might expect from such a big name with such high traffic numbers. I have a feeling this is because of Yahoo! Shopping’s focus on brand name advertising for the big guys through graphical ads (hat tip to Colin) as well as the many Yahoo! Search Marketing ads that take the focus away from merchant product listings. So this is a nice win, but if you’re a PriceGrabber merchant, don’t expect your traffic and sales to double overnight because of this deal.


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