Blogger - Why You Will Never Make Money as an Affiliate With Sephora and Nordstroms

I'm a Beauty Blogger and my target niche is Beauty, so it makes perfect sense to market beauty products on my Blogs. Today I focus on two of the most notable brands Sephora and Nordstroms.  Below is what each company offers in terms of commission and return days:

Sephora - 5.00% commission on all goods   Return Days = 1 Days
Nordstroms - 2.00% commission on all goods Return Days = .5 Days

In the tables below you will see that I made a total of $4,203.24 in sales in a 2mo period.  I will not be paid one penny for these sales even though they were purchased through my affiliate links because they are all deemed as "non-commissional sales."
Non-commissional sales can come from a number of reasons, such as a transaction not being part of an offer, an invalid Affiliate ID or most importantly if the return days have been exceeded. Return days are also known as Cookies, is the tracking data stored from the computer that clicked on the link. If an affiliate company gives you "30 return days" then you have a greater chance of making a sale because that computer's tracking data is stored in their system for 30 days after the initial click. In this case with Nordstroms and Sephora, the tracking information is only stored for 24hrs or less.

October 2013
Non-Commissional Sales
Process Date
Advertiser Name
Product
SKU
Product Name
Sales
Reason
10/3/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1497171
Faux Tan Body Sunless Body Tanner
23.40
Return Exceeded
10/3/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1552124
Give Me Some Lip
22.50
Return Exceeded
10/12/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1390194
Classic Travel Refillable Powder
8.10
Return Exceeded
10/12/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1405968
Shimmer Sheet Set
9.00
Return Exceeded
10/12/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1425529
Bulls Eye Lash Applicator
10.80
Return Exceeded
10/12/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1458124
BUXOM Amplified Smoky Eye&Trade; Collection
10.80
Return Exceeded
10/12/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1481043
Color Theory Shadow Block - Bionic Emerald, White Asylum, Crown Blue
11.70
Return Exceeded
10/13/2013
NORDSTROM.com
373533
Chanel Illusion D'ombre Long Wear Luminous Eyeshadow
36.00
Return Exceeded
10/13/2013
NORDSTROM.com
373533_2
Chanel Nuit Infinie De Chanel Illusion D'ombre Long Wear Luminous Eyeshadow
36.00
Return Exceeded
10/14/2013
NORDSTROM.com
368913
Marc By Marc Jacobs 'Classic Q Fran - Small' Shopper
448.00
Return Exceeded
10/14/2013
NORDSTROM.com
665332
Zella 'All Shirred Up' Pullover
58.00
Return Exceeded
10/19/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1169937
N/A
2.00
Return Exceeded
10/19/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1454149
La Laque Couture Nail Lacquer 25 Rose Romantique
25.00
Return Exceeded
10/19/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1528959
Caudalie Favorites Set
32.00
Return Exceeded
10/19/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1547967
Time To Shine&Trade; 6-Piece Mini Full-On&Trade; Lip Collection
32.00
Return Exceeded
10/19/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1549336
Lip Tar All-Star Mini X 4 Set
20.00
Return Exceeded
10/19/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1552124
Give Me Some Lip
50.00
Return Exceeded
10/19/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1553544
Ambient Lighting Palette
58.00
Return Exceeded
10/19/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1553718
Off The Cuff Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush Palette & Bracelet
42.00
Return Exceeded
10/19/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1567320
Bright Crystal Gift Set
92.00
Return Exceeded
10/20/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1501493
Ariel Storylook Eyeshadow Palette Volume 3
55.00
Return Exceeded
10/21/2013
NORDSTROM.com
509536_1
Chanel Nuit Infinie De Chanel Rouge Allure Velvet Luminous Matte Lip Color
34.00
Return Exceeded
10/22/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1422690
Cinderella Storylook Eyeshadow Palette
55.00
Return Exceeded
10/24/2013
NORDSTROM.com
983198
Tom Ford Cheek Color Blush
56.00
Return Exceeded
10/28/2013
NORDSTROM.com
665332
Yes
-58.00
Cannot find Original Order based on Orderid
10/30/2013
NORDSTROM.com
699152
Michael Michael Kors Stretch Corduroy Leggings (Regular & Petite)
119.00
Return Exceeded
10/31/2013
NORDSTROM.com
108969
Chanel Le Vernis Nail Colour
27.00
Return Exceeded
10/31/2013
NORDSTROM.com
333458
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
34.00
Return Exceeded
10/31/2013
NORDSTROM.com
960294
Chanel 5 Colours Exclusive Palette
80.00
Return Exceeded
Grand Total



1,429.30


In all of my transactions (shown above) the main reason I didn't make any commission was that "the return days have been exceeded".  This means that all of these purchases were made "after" the initial click-through (or cookie) expired. Not one of these transactions were made within the 24hr click-through.

This should really open your eyes to what Affiliate Marketing is all about, but not every company operates on greed, I do belong to some really great companies that I have set up separate Blogs for just to market their products. In case you're wondering, I have a total of 10 blogs, 8 of them are used specifically for affiliate marketing....(another topic to be discussed).

Do you think Sephora or Nordstroms will miss me or even care that I chose to stop marketing their products.... I don't think so!  Bottom line.... pick companies not because of their names but because of their integrity and ability to award you for your efforts.

November 2013
Non-Commissional Sales
Process Date
Advertiser Name
Product SKU
Product Name
Sales
Reason
11/3/2013
NORDSTROM.com
319821
Le Métier de Beauté 'True Color' Eyeshadow
30.00
Return Exceeded
11/5/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1555127
Degrees Of Dazzling
79.00
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
376709_26
Vince Camuto 'Ellen' Flat
39.47
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
596347
ASICS® 'GEL-Noosa Tri 8' Running Shoe (Women)(Regular Retail Price: $119.95)
80.36
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
923213
Tea Collection 'Eastern Print' Dress (Toddler Girls)
19.43
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
956332
Mighty Fine 'I Am Hello Kitty®' Hooded Tee (Toddler Girls)
28.00
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
967102
Love U Lots Two-Piece Swimsuit (Little Girls)
34.00
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
564164
ASICS® 'GT 2000' Running Shoe (Women) (Regular Retail Price: $115.00)
77.05
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
598660_3
Lodis 'Sylvie Swivel' iPad Case
58.80
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
644184_2
Lodis 'Swivel' iPad mini Case
46.80
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
692707
St. John Collection Shawl Collar Liquid Satin Blouse
356.98
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
692812
St. John Yellow Label Reptile Print Jersey Tee
116.98
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
692812_1
St. John Yellow Label Reptile Print Jersey Tee
233.96
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
981278
Joe's Skinny Ankle Jeans (Delia)
98.90
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
662814_1
Clarks� 'Rosepoint Dew' Bootie (Online Only Color)
139.95
Return Exceeded
11/7/2013
NORDSTROM.com
681150
TOMS 'Classic - Earthwise' Vegan Slip-On (Women)
40.46
Return Exceeded
11/8/2013
NORDSTROM.com
363960
Bobeau Asymmetric Knit Maxi Skirt
39.90
Return Exceeded
11/8/2013
NORDSTROM.com
365925
J Brand '2311 Maria' High Rise Jeans (Starless)
200.00
Return Exceeded
11/8/2013
NORDSTROM.com
586561
Paige Denim 'Hidden Hills' Bootcut Stretch Jeans (Stream)
169.00
Return Exceeded
11/8/2013
NORDSTROM.com
909997_1
Steve Madden 'Clydee' Pump
79.90
Return Exceeded
11/8/2013
NORDSTROM.com
909997_2
Steve Madden 'Clydee' Pump
79.90
Return Exceeded
11/8/2013
NORDSTROM.com
919182
Sam Edelman 'Kayla' Over the Knee Boot
274.95
Return Exceeded
11/8/2013
NORDSTROM.com
952740
Pleione Exposed Seam Print Tee
28.80
Return Exceeded
11/8/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1474238
Beauty Editor Darlings Set
15.20
Return Exceeded
11/8/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1550623
Vice Palette 2
47.20
Return Exceeded
11/8/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1435056
Good Karma Optical Blurring Brush
25.00
Return Exceeded
11/8/2013
Sephora.com, Inc.
1532084
Naked Skin Ultra Definition Pressed Finishing Powder Naked Dark
34.00
Return Exceeded
11/10/2013
NORDSTROM.com
266225
Giorgio Armani 'Eyes to Kill' Mascara
30.00
Return Exceeded
11/10/2013
NORDSTROM.com
627243
CHANEL LE VOLUME DE CHANEL MASCARA
30.00
Return Exceeded
11/15/2013
NORDSTROM.com
310070
PIKOLINOS 'Brujas' Boot
239.95
Return Exceeded
Grand Total
2773.94
 

Don't let this post discourage you from affiliate marketing beauty products on your Blog. In all actuality I do quite well as an affiliate marketer with other companies besides Sephora & Nordstroms. I've found that the best company to sign up with to promote beauty products is LinkShare.  Sephora & Nordstroms are a part of LinkShare but there's also over 100 beauty  companies that pay a lot more commission and have just about everything you want to promote.

Before you become an affiliate marketer, you should be familiar with several terms, I listed the most important ones below for those of you that are newbies, but just be sure and do your research before you get started!
Webroot product box shots

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Actual Commissions - Actual Commissions represents the net commissions earned by a publisher after adjustments such as cancellation, and returns.
Adjusted Commissions - Adjusted Commissions represent commissions that were adjusted from the baseline commissions, usually because of special offers, cancellation or returns.
Affiliate - Also referred to as a Publisher, an affiliate is a person or organization running a Web site that partners with one or more online advertisers. The affiliate places links on its site to promote the merchant's products or services. In exchange, the affiliate receives a commission for all valid transactions it has referred.
Baseline Commissions - Baseline Commissions represents commissions you’ve earned from advertiser’s baseline programs. These do not include special offers, and other adjustments such as cancellations and returns.
Affiliate ID - Tracking Code (Affiliate ID): Your LinkShare Tracking Code (some people call this their Affiliate ID or encrypted code) is not your LinkShare Username. You can find your unique tracking code by looking at any link code generated by your account. The tracking code is the 11 character alphanumeric code behind “id=” and before “&offerid=” in the link code.
Commission - Commission refers to the amount of compensation paid to publishers for participation in an advertiser’s Affiliate program. Publishers generally earn a percentage of each sale made on an advertiser’s site to a visitor referred by a link on that publisher’s site. Commissions may also be a flat fee for each purchase or action. This commission varies from advertiser to advertiser.
Commissionable - A transaction that elects for a commission.
Commissionable Transaction - he transaction successfully applies to the offer terms.
CPM - CPM is usually referred to the number of clicks registered in a website by the readers. Ad Networks, such as AdSense, calculate ad revenue for websites based on CPM.
CTR - click-Through Rate or CTR is obtained by dividing the number of clicks by the number of impressions. CTR is a good way of measuring the effectiveness of a campaign. For example, if your banner ad was delivered 100 times (impressions) and one person clicked on it, then the resulting CTR would be 1 percent.
Return Days - Return Days are the number of days that can elapse between a referred customer's intial visit and a return visit in which they make a purchase. If a customer makes a purchase within the Return Days period, the referring publisher receives a commission on the sale, even if the visitor returns directly to the advertiser’s site.
Non-Commissionable Transaction - This can come from a number of reasons, such as a transaction not being part of an offer, or if an invalid Affiliate ID is provided, if the return days have been exceeded.