Create an affiliate link to sell this product

I need to create an affiliate link to sell this product,

http://www.microsoft.com/surface/en-us/products/surface

I thought that I had already set this up last week when I performed this search https://www.google.com/search?num=100&newwindow=1&site=&source=hp&q=microsoft+affiliate+program&oq=microsoft+affiliate+program&gs_l=hp.3..0l2j0i22i30l7.633.9168.0.9836.30.22.1.7.7.0.73.1279.22.22.0.msedr...0...1c.1.64.hp..1.29.1293.0.nRqhRo87tBc and ended up with what I thought was a vendor link.

Unfortunately I was called away quickly and cannot figure out the path I took.  Here is a video  http://screencast.com/t/89Z5GD2u which illustrates some of the process I went through but I am still confused.  

I would greatly appreciate any assistance on this.
frugalmuleAsked:
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Lucas BishopClick TrackerCommented:
Hi Ted,

Great work providing a screencast to help explore this issue.

First, you're in the right location with LinkShare, as they are managing the affiliate program for Microsoft as seen here.

Once you login to your Linkshare account, search for "Microsoft Store" in the Advertiser Search field (top right). This will bring up the Microsoft Store program. You can then apply to be approved. Only once you are approved (this can take a day or so) can you create affiliate links.
ms-affiliate.PNG

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frugalmuleAuthor Commented:
What is the difference between the two (2) Microsoft affiliate link programs mentioned here under United States http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/global-affiliate-partner-networks/ ?

One is called the oneNetworkDirect program by Digital River and the other is the LinkShare program by Rakuten.

Thanks very much sir for the assistance.
Lucas BishopClick TrackerCommented:
Often a company will run their affiliate program through multiple networks. This gives the advertiser access to more affiliates (publishers), since many publishers are loyal to working with specific networks.

The percentage you receive will be the same either way.

You may want to apply through both networks as you may like ones interface over the other.
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frugalmuleAuthor Commented:
ok, very interesting.

I ended up here http://cli.linksynergy.com/cli/publisher/links/linkfinder.php?mode=basic&keyword=Microsoft+Surface&exact=&any=&exclude=&mid=24542&cat=&sort=productname&retailprice_sort=&productname_sort=asc&shortdesp_sort=&categoryname_sort=&keyword_sort=&linklang=&currec=1&max=100

I am trying to get a link to this one http://www.microsoft.com/surface/en-us/products/surface so that I can sell it through www.frugalmule.com or send the link to a customer via email.  I currently have 5 potential email customers that want this product.  If I give them the direct link, I get nothing.
frugalmuleAuthor Commented:
How can I form a link for this $299 product  http://www.microsoft.com/surface/en-us/products/surface ?
Lucas BishopClick TrackerCommented:
Have you applied for and been approved for the Microsoft Affiliate Program on LinkShare yet?

You won't be able to build any links until you've been approved. I'm not approved for their program so the search-link you posted just shows me this message below the search form:

Unable to locate matching products. This can happen if you have not been approved by the Advertiser specified in the query or if you have no active relationships with any Advertiser.
frugalmuleAuthor Commented:
Yes, I am approved as off today but when I went to create custom link, I could not find the UI value for the product, or any other identifier.
Lucas BishopClick TrackerCommented:
When you search for "surface" do you get back any results? Microsoft might have done a poor job of setting up their links in LinkShare.

Instead try to find a link via:
Affiliate Network > Links > Get Links
(click on the Microsoft advertiser option)

Once you're in this area, look in the left column for Links or Offers to see if you can track down a link to the Surface there. I've attached an example of this area for an Advertiser I'm approved for.
linkshare.PNG
frugalmuleAuthor Commented:
Yes, but not the offer listed on that page.  Also, the linkshare site asks for a UI Value, but all the offers have an Offer # which I suspect is different than the UI Values.

Anyway, I am wanting only the offer mentioned here http://www.microsoft.com/surface/en-us/products/surface .

Thanks for the assist.  No luck thus far, and now the linkshare site http://login.linkshare.com/ isn't even available.  

BTW Microsoft "approval" is instantaneous now.
Lucas BishopClick TrackerCommented:
I didn't know it was auto approval. I've just signed up. You can get to the Surface links here:

linkshare-microsoft.PNG
Click on the "Text/Email" links for example and there are all sorts of different links to the Surface and different Surface packages.

For example:

Here is my link for $100 off the Surface 3, from 4/19 - 4/27.

Here is $119 off the Surface Pro 3 bundle.
frugalmuleAuthor Commented:
Yep, but I am looking for that $299 price point that my customers are interested in.  

How would I add this http://www.microsoft.com/surface/en-us/products/surface ?
Lucas BishopClick TrackerCommented:
$299 must be the price point for the original Surface (version 1) in the smallest size (32GB?) that it came in. I don't know that it's even available for sale in the Microsoft Store anymore.  The closest thing I can find is this out of stock Surface 64GB for $329.

The Surface 2 starts at $449 and the Surface 3 starts at $499, so I think they are showing that $299 version just to drive traffic into the store.

If you can actually find the $299 version at http://microsoftstore.com you can take the link to it and post it directly into the deep linker tool ~ http://cli.linksynergy.com/cli/publisher/links/deeplinks.php ...keep in mind it must be from the microsoftstore.com domain (not microsoft.com).
frugalmuleAuthor Commented:
I used the deep linker and created this affiliate link for the product which appears to contain the Offer ID number.  I still have no idea what is meant by a UI Value but it does not appear to be needed.

However, they want you to send the email through their system which I do NOT want to do.

So I wonder if I will get credit if sell the product from an email message or even from a different site than the one shown for the Site ID?

It will be interesting to find out.
Lucas BishopClick TrackerCommented:
That link you have used is for the microsoft.com domain -- there is a good chance you will NOT receive credit for traffic sent here, since this domain is not part of the affiliate program.

Also, if you try to click-through that link to find the product for sale at $299, you will find out it does not exist at that price in their store. If you were to share that link with someone they would be disappointed and/or confused in the end.

You will only receive credit for sending directly to a microsoftstore.com page. But like I said, it doesn't appear that the $299 Surface is available there.
frugalmuleAuthor Commented:
Thanks, still looking for a way
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