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zZounds Affiliate FAQ

General Questions

What's an Affiliate Program?

You get paid when you link your website to zZounds Music and visitors to your site click through and make a purchase at our site. You can get paid a lot: with zZounds your referral fee will be 6 percent of the purchase total. If a customer buys a keyboard workstation, one of our most popular products, then you could earn a referral fee of $125-300 on that one sale alone. It can add up pretty quickly at that rate!

zZounds does the hard work of converting potential customers into sales, collecting the money, and fulfilling the order. zZounds handle all customer service and all reporting. All you've got to do is let your visitors know that zZounds is a great place to buy music instruments on the web, and the money should begin to flow your way.

Why use the GearLink Affiliate Program for zZounds?

  1. We pay the highest referral fees in the industry - 6%. In addition, you can earn significant bonuses:
    • Affiliates not exclusive to zZounds:
      • Generate Monthly Net Sales > $5,000, earn a 25% bonus
      • Generate Monthly Net Sales > $10,000, earn a 50% bonus
    • Affiliates exclusive to zZounds: (For the entire month, zZounds must be the only musical instrument affiliate featured on your site.)
      • Generate Monthly Net Sales > $1,000, earn a 20% bonus
      • Generate Monthly Net Sales > $5,000, earn a 40% bonus
      • Generate Monthly Net Sales > $10,000, earn a 80% bonus
  2. We have a 45 day cookie. When a visitor clicks through on one of your affiliate links, you will receive a referral fee for all sales made within 45 days of that click through. Many competing affiliate programs expire their cookies after only 1-2 days.
  3. Very high customer satisfaction and low prices. The vast majority of zZounds customers are satisfied with their service and their ratings are among the best in the industry.

How much does it cost to join?

It's free. We do not have an application fee or any minimum sales requirements.

How do I get started?

  1. Read the Affiliate Agreement carefully.
  2. Fill out our Affiliate Enrollment application.
  3. Create affiliate links on your site.

How long has the GearLink affiliate program been operating?

The zZounds affiliate program has been running since 1999. The GearLink affiliate program replaced it in 2010, keeping in tact the same great service and policies. Our affiliate program is important to zZounds - it generates a substantial portion of sales. We are always trying to improve our program and make it more profitable for our merchants and affiliates. If you have suggestions for improvements, please send them to us by using this web form and select "Affiliate Questions" for the topic.

Links

How do I create links to zZounds?

After you have submitted your affiliate application, we will show you simple instructions how to create special affiliate links for your site. You don't have to be an HTML expert -- even beginners can create links in just a few minutes. Anytime you need a refresher on the link structure, you can log on to the affiliate portal page for a customized primer on creating links for your site.

Can I link to individual products?

Yes, you may create links to any products. You might also consider linking to a category page, such as "Guitars" or "Gibson Guitars".

I don't know how to write HTML? Will GearLink help me?

Although we won't be able to build your web site, we will help you with linking to our site. You can log on to the affiliate portal and review your customized instructions for creating affiliate links. Otherwise, the range of options for building web sites is very large. Programs like Frontpage and Dreamweaver are the leaders in the field of web page creation, but they may be overkill for many users. Many other freeware and shareware programs also exist, but you can also just use the windows notepad program or any other text editor. Basic HTML is not very complicated and you can learn how to create a simple web site in only a few hours. If you're unsure about your abilities, ask around. You may already know someone who has created a website and they may be willing to share their knowledge and/or impress you with their skills.

Referral Fees

How much money do I earn per sale?

You will earn a 6% referral fee for each sale resulting from an attributable referral from your web site. If you refer a customer that purchases a $3,000 keyboard, you will earn $180.

Why does GearLink wait 60 days to pay an affiliate?

We wish to pay affiliate referral fees on sales that are net of returns and zZounds has a 30 day return policy. After the 30 day return policy has passed, we need a standard 30 days for processing returns and issuing payments.

We instituted this policy because, we've had problems from small affiliates that referred orders to zZounds, only to have all of the merchandise returned after we have already sent out the check for referral fees. Often these affiliates never referred any subsequent orders to zZounds, so that we could not use future referral fees to offset the ineligible referral fee that we had already paid.

For affiliates that have a track record of generating sales month after month, we don't have to worry about not recapturing commissions from returned merchandise. In these cases, we try to pay within 30 days.

After I refer a customer to zZounds, for how long will I get credit for their sales?

You will receive a commission for all sales made within 45 days of the last click-through from your site. This period is also known as the cookie duration, since Special link tracking is done through placing a cookie on the user's browser.

Can my affiliate ID be replaced by another site?

Yes, we will pay only one referral fee on each sale. If a user that your site previously referred to us clicks through on another site's tracking link, their tracking ID will replace yours. The last site that refers the customer to zZounds will receive credit for the sale. A sticky, content-filled site that users keep revisiting is the best way to ensure that users will have your affiliate code.

The affiliate reporting page shows that I made a commission last month, but I didn't receive a check. What gives?

If your outstanding referral fee balance is less than $50, we will we will hold those referral fees until the total amount due is at least $50.

Reporting & Account Maintenance

How do I track orders and know how much I should be paid?

We take care of the tracking for you via direct connection between GearLink reporting, the zZounds website, and their warehouse mainframe. Once you've been approved and you have setup your Special affiliate links, you can get online reports and track your sales performance. Your results are updated each day to provide you with the latest information you need to monitor your performance.

How do I know how much money I've earned in a month?

Visit the zZounds web site and log on to the affiliate portal. You'll be able to see the sales and referral fees that you have generated.

How long does it take for sales to show on my reports?

We update our sales and commissions reports daily at 2:00 AM CST. If a sale is placed after this, it will not show up until the next day.

How do I update my account information?

Please contact us using this web form. Be sure to include your affiliate ID.

How do I add additional Web sites (URLs) to my account?

You will be paid referral fees only from clickthrus originating from one of the sites listed on your affiliate application. If you want to add a new site to your account, please contact us using this web form, and be sure to include the new site URL(s) and your affiliate ID.

How do I change my password?

Login in to the affiliate portal and select "Change your Password" from the menu bar on the left.

I forgot my password. What do I do?

Enter your affiliate id on this page and we will send your password to the email account listed when you originally filled out your application. You can also reach this page from the login page by clicking on "Forgot your password?"

I lost my affiliate ID. What do I do?

Please contact us using this web form. We will send your affiliate ID to the email account listed when you originally filled out your application.

Misc

Can non-US entities, i.e. individuals, businesses or organizations, join the zZounds affiliate program?

Yes. Referral Fees will be paid in U.S. dollars.

Will I have federal taxes deducted from my referral fees?

Unless we have been specifically notified by the IRS to withhold taxes from your referral fees, you will be paid the full amount of your referral fees. Foreign entities are not subject to any withholding.

What is the best way to contact the Affiliate Manager?

For all affiliate related correspondence, send us an email to affiliate@zzounds.com You should receive a detailed response within one business day. In the case of an emergency, affiliates are welcome to contact zZounds at 800-zZounds (800-996-8637) and leave a message for the affiliate manager (please provide affiliate ID#). The affiliate manager will return your call promptly.

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