As you probably already know, eBay left Commission Junction and took it’s affiliate program in house – which is now called the EPN or “EBay Partner Network”. eBay was Commission Junction’s largest merchant and I’m sure that CJ made the most money from them. It was a huge loss when they left, and I bet that eBay is saving millions monthly by moving the program in house. So it was a big surprise when PepperJam Network announced that you could signup to be an affiliate for eBay through them. Let’s be clear, eBay is NOT shutting down EPN. You can signup to promote eBay as an affiliate through EPN or Pepperjam (or both, but I don’t know why you would).

So – if you don’t know who Pepperjam is, you are probably wondering first “Why would eBay do this“, and second “Why would I want to promote eBay through Pepperjam – I’m signed up through EPN“.

On the first point, I believe eBay is working with Pepperjam because they are the fastest growing affiliate and Search Engine Marketing company (SEM) in the world. They are a small but very aggressive and rapidly growing company with just enough saavy to have the abilty to do more in months than Commission Junction had in years. In this digital point thread Pepperjam says that eBay actually reached out to them. So – the second point is probably what you’re really wondering, why would you signup to promote eBay through Pepperjam? If nothing more, it should be for the fact that if you plan on being even a mildly successful affiliate for eBay – you’ll make more money. If you are wildly successful – you’ll make a LOT more money through Pepperjam. How much more? Let me tell you…

eBay Commission Structure Through Pepperjam

Bid Revenue Tiers:

$0.00 – $99.99 – 50.00%
$100.00 – $4,999.99 – 55.00%
$5,000.00 – $199,999.99 – 60.00%
$200,000.00 – $699,999.99 – 65.00%
$700,000.00 – $2,999,999.99 – 70.00%
$3,000,000.00+ 75.00%

New Signup Tiers (ACRU’s):

0 – 49 – $25.00
50 – 1,999 – $28.00
2,000 – 29,999 – $31.00
30,000+ – $35.00

You can see under the bid revenue tiers – that if you make only $100 or more per month in eBay affiliate revenue – you can earn 5% more per month. If you earn $5,000 per month or more you can get 10% more in earnings. That should be enough reason to exclusively promote eBay through Pepperjam and not EPN. You can get more money in new signups too. I know, you have to get more than 50 per month to get more, but I get 5-8 new signups now per every $250 ebay affiliate revenue on one of my niche sites.

Now, if you promote eBay through BANS, a niche store, or a WordPress plugin – not to fear! The first thing Pepperjam did was work with BANS and PHPBay to have the authors update so their products will work with the Pepperjam network. Yes, I know this means changing the affiliate code and updating your software in ALL your sites and niche stores, but for more money isn’t it worth it?

I think that this is the beginning of really good things to come. I say “things to come” because it’s not like you can login to Pepperjam and start creating eBay widgets or anything, you can create banners, text links, and the “advanced links” section right is limited to search boxes. Pepperjam does have a single widget called “Pepperjam Ads”, but that’s for creating ads for multiple advertisers to rotate in a widget. You can’t (currently) create ebay specific widgets like you can through EPN using the editor kit. This is probably the reason that Pepperjam contacted BANS and PHPBay authors right away to grab that audience quickly. In my opinion – what they should (also) do is create custom widgets and scripts you can’t get anywhere else at all to set themselves apart from anything else out there.

There was as time when eBay was creating some pretty cool flash widgets to make it really easy to add them to web sites, blogs, and even things like MySpace and Facebook. They were calling them “eBay to go” widgets. eBay didn’t have them ready by the CJ to EPN transition, and in face they only showed up on the EPN web site in the last week or so. That means I’ve been losing commission on the ones I created for my niche stores all this time. I’d like to see cool widgets like that available through Pepperjam. They already have “deep linking” available, so hopefully cool widgets aren’t that far off.

One of the things that was speculated upon when this was first announced was whether or not Pepperjam would release anything to basically create a BANS or niche type store (without having to buy BANS or a script). Maybe some of us mis-interpreted Pepperjam when the commented (in the previously mentioned DP thread) “We are working to implement BANS or a BANS-like solution ASAP.“. In fact roughly a week later it was announced that both BANS and PHPBay were updated to work through Pepperjam (which is awesome!) – but it may have left some of thinking – “well, will be you creating your own Pepperjam tools to create niche stores for free?”. Maybe they’ll comment on this post and let us know one way or the other.

Regardless, (in that same DP thread) Pepperjam did give enough basic info to allow anyone to create a script or tool for a simple BANS or niche store using their linking structure. Just by using the Pepperjam tracking ID, like http://www.pntra.com/t/2-4881-770-6928?url= (use your own of course if you create a script), all you have to is add the URL encoded eBay destination after it to have trackable Pepperjam eBay links (thanks to Zeropaid for this). Seems like a script to hack the trackable URL into eBay URL’s from an eBay RSS feed wouldn’t be too hard (anyone out there up for it?).

Pepperjam did say in the end of that thread (again) that they were working on some cool tools that would be released in the near future – so keep your eyes peeled! If you aren’t already – be sure to signup for pepperjam yourself, so you don’t miss out!