Are you a CJ affiliate promoting any of these programs with Google Checkout coupons?
If you are, you may need to look closely at how Google Checkout is affecting your commissions
The following is from an email from CJ’s Ziggy Kopetti on the forum thread discussing this issue…
I recently learned that the Google Checkout process which some CJ merchants are promoting on their sites will affect affiliate commissions. Here is an explanation of how Google Checkout works and how it affects affiliates who are working with CJ merchants that offer Google Checkout.
Please note: this explanation is specific to Commission Junction merchants only.
HOW IT WORKS
Google batches all the Google Checkout orders with the CJ PID and (if appended) the SID to the merchant. The merchant then conforms the order to our batching system, and batches it in to Commission Junction. The responsibility is on the merchant to filter the data from Google, identify the traffic from the CJ affiliates and batch it in. (Note: the CJ system does not distinguish if it is a Google checkout transaction or not.)
Further, pixel tracking does not work with Google checkout and most of our CJ advertisers utilize pixel tracking.
Thus, if the merchant relies solely on pixel tracking, affiliate tracking is lost when Google checkout is used even if the customer came to the site on an affiliate link.
Consequently, only those merchants that are batch merchants with CJ are encouraging publishers to promote their Google Checkout offer…
I recommend that affiliates NOT promote the Google Checkout offers for eBags, Petco, Golfsmith, eCost or Starbucks Store because these merchants pixel track. Unless the Advertiser batches in the order with the PID and SID received from Google, the order will never reach our system and you will not be paid a commission for the order. Loyalty shoppers who make purchases on these sites after clicking through from your site but then utilize Google Checkout will not receive their incentive.
This is an important issue at the moment as some merchants are pushing affiliates to push these offers and increase traffic during the holidays. Google itself is making a major push to promote the Checkout platform with merchants and the general public for the holidays as well.
Kopetti goes on to write that:
ValueClick is in negotiations with Google at the moment deciding if they want Google to insert the CJ tracking pixel into Google checkout, or not. This will depend on the revenue impact to the publishers. Please let me know if you can quantify the impact to your program.
How will these negotiations between ValueClick and Google play out over the coming months? Will Google see the issue from the affiliate point of view and make changes? Is it already too late to find a solution for the busy and important holiday season? What does this mean for the future of Google’s inroads into CPA?
Are Linkshare or ShareASale affected as well??
[Update 12/1/6 10:25pm est: Connie Berg also blogged about this on ReveNews. Check out her insightful post as well.]