What is a Shareasale Datafeed and How Does it Work?

As an IT and marketing guy I’m often asked to setup new software or help integrate one system with another. This post is about Shareasale datafeeds: what they are and how they are used – from an IT point of view. If you still need professional help, there is a link at the bottom.

Summary:

  • a datafeed is just a file that affiliates can download that contains links and info on our products
  • once the datafeed is downloaded, affiliates can use it with special widgets on their site
  • some affiliates specifically look for merchants who have a datafeed they can download
  • if the datafeed is visible in our Creatives under Datafeed, then affiliates can download it
  • it is not an integration, it’s only a file that can be updated at any time, overwriting the old file

What is a Shareasale datafeed?

The Datafeed functionality allows merchants like us to upload lists of products to their ShareASale account and provides us with the ability to manage multiple stores and product level commissions as additional options. The Datafeed upload completely replaces the existing product listings in our merchant’s account with every upload. Any items not included in the uploaded file will be removed from the product listings. The full overview of the Datafeed specifications can be found at this Shareasale datafeed setup link.

Why use a datafeed?

It allows any affiliate that wants to feature a product on their page or through one of Shareasale’s content tools to display our products on their page. Some affiliates specifically look for merchants with datafeeds.


How long have they been around?

At least since 2013.

How do I check to make sure a datafeed is working?

It appears to be something only an affiliate can see, but the documentation makes it seem like it’s not an integration, it’s just a file that affiliates download and then use as a source file on their sites. So as long as it’s in your creatives and approved, then it’s “working”.

Why would it not be working or how to update the file?

We could find that either Shareasale has an issue with the file or the affiliates themselves have an issue with the file once they go to use it. Once we have feedback, we can upload it again at any time and it will overwrite the file that is currently in Shareasale. Here are some common datafeed problems to watch out for and here are some examples of how to create a product datafeed.

Conclusion

I didn’t know anything about Shareasale and I didn’t take the time to learn it before, but when I did take the time to learn it and build context I was finally able to know what a datafeed was used for and to tell whether or not the datafeed was setup correctly. This blog post is meant to help others like me who are tasked with setting up a Shareasale datafeed know what a datafeed is and how to check it so I have more context about what they are for and how they are used.

Professional Affiliate Setup Help

If you’re reading this you may be a merchant on Shareasale that is looking for an affiliate management company to help you get setup and build a network of affiliates to help market your products. This is not a sponsored post, but I have worked with Priest Willis and his team at Affiliate Mission and have been pleased with their work, their communication, and their integrity. I highly recommend Affiliate Mission for affiliate management and marketing services.

Sign up for LinkShare

Signing up as a LinkShare publisher is quick, easy, and free! Just complete the info on this page and you’ll be able to start making money online in no time.

What is a LinkShare publisher?

Publisher is LinkShare’s term for an affiliate who is promoting other company’s (Advertisers) products and services in exchange for a commission.

Who’s eligible to become a publisher?

Anyone with a Web site, blog, or Internet presence can join LinkShare. You will also need to provide a valid mailing address (to receive payments) and tax information.

Does it cost anything to apply?

No, it is completely free to become a LinkShare publisher and there is no cost in joining any LinkShare advertiser program.

How do I generate revenue?

As a publisher, you will have access to links and banners that you can place on your Web site, blog, or in Emails. These links will drive traffic to advertisers’ Web sites. Advertisers will pay a commission for each purchase or qualifying action you generate for them. LinkShare acts as the trusted third-party that brings together both advertisers and publishers.

What makes LinkShare different from other affiliate networks?

There are many affiliate marketing networks to choose from and you want to spend your valuable time on the network that will generate the most commissions for your business. LinkShare maintains one of the most successful affiliate marketing networks in the world. Leading publishers and advertisers from almost every vertical have chosen LinkShare to help increase their online revenue. We stand apart from other affiliate marketing networks in terms of experience, technology, and network quality and integrity.

LinkShare has signed on hundreds of advertisers including some of the most prestigious and well-known brands in the world such as Wal-Mart, Macy’s, Clinique, OfficeDepot, and Apple iTunes.

LinkShare recently introduced a completely redesigned user interface for its Publishers: the LinkShare Publisher Dashboard, which is a simple, elegant design allows you to easily find and join advertiser programs and then locate the best links for your Web site. Plus, you can see how your commissions are stacking up at any given moment in time with our easy-to-understand and advanced reporting capabilities.

LinkShare offers many innovative link technologies that help you keep your advertiser links fresh and up-to-date including Merchandiser Product Feeds; Dynamic Rich Media (DRM); Flex Links for video, widgets, and Flash content; and Mobile Links for those publishers on the cutting edge of the next e-commerce trend.