Looks like the move away from Commission Junction is finally complete and eBay is just about finished setting up their new affiliate program. (If you don’t know what an affiliate program is, essentially, it is a program that allows you to earn a referral credit for any traffic that you directly send to eBay).
I am personally pretty excited about this change as CJ is less than ideal to use and, hopefully, this new program will offer us greater flexibility. The eBay affiliate program has been a good earner in the past and is ideal advertising for me on my blog so I have high hopes.
I am a little mystified that the launch of this site was so hush hush, though. I subscribe to all eBay News and blogs and usually hear about most of the stuff before it happens and I only heard about the site accepting applications through another blogger. Perhaps it is still in beta.
Right off the bat, I am interested that they are asking publishers to apply, telling eBay a little about their company. Sure, the CJ program made you “apply” but this was all but a joke as acceptance was instantaneous. That said, we got our acceptance very quickly so this may still just be a formality more than an actual application process.
Here are a few differences from Commission Junction right off the bat:
- You have the option of direct deposit or PayPal as a payment method. (To be expected, I suppose.)
- The site is much more user friendly and set up was much quicker than on CJ.
- Ads are, overall, much more customizable and easier to browse.
Here are a few of the types of ads:
Using the Link Generator allows you to easily generate links to eBay Homepage, a specific keyword search, item ID or custom URL (I love the fact that you can use the affiliate program to direct to your own eBay store using custom URL!) Sure, you could do all this before, but it was an advanced technique and now its very easy. Question: If I use the affiliate program to direct traffic to my store, do I still also get the store referral credit? I sure hope so.
Creative Generator generates ads that are much fancier than anything on Commission Junction: Flash ads, video, and more. My first complaint is that there are very few of them and that they are not customizable. My second complaint is that they don’t seem to work. I tried several times to include one below and it just will not display. Perhaps this is just growing pains.
Under Widgets, the two services I am the most excited about are “Coming soon!” These are new versions of the eBay To Go and customizable banners like I wish the Creative Generator would make.
The RSS widget works exactly the same as the old RSS widget so there is nothing really to see here.
The other widget, snippet creator is interesting. It has themes of different colors which are a tad silly looking if you ask me. But I do love the feature that you can specify the most watched items in the category of your choice in addition to or in place of keywords which is a great twist. I made a little sample. These are the most watched vintage My Little Pony items on eBay right now:
Of course, the question everyone wants to know is how much money will it make me? Too soon to say, but so far the interface is very easy to use and it seems much more customizable. You could view this as a bad thing because it means that more people will use it than before but ease of use is a big thing for me. I will keep you posted on the other things I find as I use it more.
If you are interested in more information on this new program or wish to apply, you can visit their website at https://www.ebaypartnernetwork.com.