1) What does “Open Merchant” mean?
The “Open Merchant” checkbox helps you search for merchants that generally do not have restrictions. In most cases, once your VigLink account is approved, you can earn from these merchants right away.
2) What does “Preferred Merchant” mean?
The “Preferred Merchant” checkbox helps you search for merchants in our Preferred Merchant program. Preferred Merchants are merchants VigLink has negotiated higher commission rates with than those typically offered to individual affiliates.
3) What if my site’s category isn’t listed?
Categories correlate with our most common publisher verticals so that you can find merchants who are a good match for your campaign. If your site’s category isn’t listed, don’t worry: you can still search all merchants without it. Let us know if there’s a category you’d like us to add in the future!
4) What do CPA and CPC mean?
CPA and CPC indicate how the merchant commissions on revenue events. CPA stands for cost per acquisition (i.e. sale). CPC stands for cost per click.
5) Will all my campaigns be approved for merchants I apply to, or do I have to apply separately?
You should apply separately per campaign for all restricted merchants in the Merchant Explorer. You can use the “Select a Campaign” drop-down to choose a campaign and submit approval requests. Keep in mind that merchants may accept one campaign and reject another depending on their terms.
6) Are all merchants Preferred Merchants?
No. Preferred Merchants are those we’ve negotiated high commission rates with. They are denoted by an orange star on their logo. You can find a complete list of all Preferred Merchants on the Merchant Explorer homepage.
7) What does it mean in the search results if a merchant affiliates from “multiple” countries versus “global”?
If the country column says “multiple” that means a merchant accepts traffic from more than one specific country. For example, Backcountry accepts traffic from the U.S., the U.K., and Canada. If the country column says “global” that means a merchant accepts traffic worldwide. Please note that if your site’s users are not in countries listed on the merchant’s page, clicks will likely not convert and yield commissions.
8) What does “not listed” for countries mean?
We’re working on automating data pulled into the Merchant Explorer; for example, many commission rates are now calculated rates that update on their own. However, including the countries a merchant accepts traffic from has to be done manually by our Merchant Team. This means there are going to be merchants where this information hasn’t been pulled in yet, currently designated as “not listed.” If there’s a merchant with no country details listed, let us know and we’ll be happy to provide that information if possible.
9) What does “multiple” commission rates mean?
Some merchants pay distinct commission rates (i.e. “multiple” rates) for different products or product categories. Therefore, there is not a unified commission rate for the merchant.
10) What does “not listed” for commission rates mean?
The majority of merchants in our system have an automated calculated rate or a manually-entered rate (if our system doesn’t have enough sales data for a calculated rate). However, there are some merchants where our Merchant Team hasn’t manually-entered the rate yet, which will result in a “not listed” rate. If there’s a merchant with no rate listed, let us know and we’ll be happy to provide that information if possible.
11) If a commission rate has a tilde in front of it, what does that mean? What if the rate doesn’t have a tilde?
The commission rates with a tilde (~) in front of them are calculated rates. Calculated rates are automated based on our sales data for a given merchant; these rates are highly accurate and update automatically week by week. If a rate doesn’t have a tilde, that means the rate was manually-entered by our Merchant Team.
12) What do the orange tag and star mean?
The orange tag and star indicate a merchant is a Preferred Merchant. Preferred Merchants are merchants VigLink has negotiated higher commission rates with than those typically offered to individual affiliates.
13) How are merchants in the search results organized?
Preferred Merchants appear at the top of all search results; all other merchants are then listed alphabetically.
14) How do I find out more about a merchant I’m interested in in the search results?
Once you find a merchant that you want to learn more about, simply click on that merchant’s name in the search results. You will then be taken to their merchant record page where you can find a brief description of the merchant; where the merchant accepts traffic from; their commission structure; and an affiliation tester for seeing if your campaign is approved to send traffic.
15) How do I change the filters when I search?
When you are searching there are a number of different parameters that you can use to narrow down results. Once you have chosen a parameter such as “Category,” click the search button and you will see it appear next to “Search results for…”. If you want to remove the parameter, simply click the “X” to the right of it.
Merchant Record Pages
1) If I’m on a merchant record page, can I test an entirely different merchant URL to see if it will affiliate?
Yes, you can test a link to an entirely different merchant URL than the merchant page you are on.
2) What if my country is not accepted by the merchant?
If most of your traffic comes from a country not listed on the merchant record page, try searching for one that does by choosing a country when you search.
3) Why is one of my campaigns is listed as “approved for all programs” for a merchant, but others are not?
There is a chance that not all of your campaigns will be approved to affiliate to a certain merchant depending on a merchant’s restrictions. Some merchants may have approved all of your campaigns for affiliation, but that doesn’t mean all merchants will. When applying to merchant programs via the Merchant Explorer, be sure to apply separately for each of your campaigns.
4) Why didn’t my test link for the merchant affiliate?
There could be a number of reasons why a test link for a merchant doesn't affiliate:
- If your campaign has not yet been approved by VigLink
- If your campaign has not been approved by the merchant (if they are a restricted merchant)
- If your campaign was added to a merchant’s blacklist due to Network Quality violations
- If the merchant’s pricing model is listed as CPC, this means they do not affiliate on all product deep links -- only some. If the link you tested doesn’t return a “Url can be affiliated with the selected campaign” response, it means it’s a product the merchant is not paying per click commissions on.
5) What does “Url can be affiliated with the selected campaign” mean?
If you test a link and receive this response, you’re good to go! You can successfully affiliate links to the merchant.
6) What does “Url is invalid” mean?
If you test a link and receive this response, this means that you copied an invalid URL into the search bar. Please copy and paste a link from your browser into the search box for optimal results.
7) What does “Url may not be affiliated with the selected campaign. Check approval status.” mean?
If you test a link and receive this response, your VigLink account might not be approved yet, or you might not be approved for the merchant’s program yet (if the merchant is restricted).