Running SmartDD v3 From A Single Site

Going on from my previous post, I realised I had a few things to say about SmartDD that maybe aren’t as obvious as I thought they were from the new videos. Somebody asked me a question the other day that made me wonder and then my memory was jogged while writing that last post.

So here we go.

You’ve always been able to run all your sites from a single installation of SmartDD if you wanted to. But it’s also fine if you want to install it on each site, and that’s what I tended to do myself so I suppose things weren’t quite right for using it on a single site and managing all your other sites through it.

But with v3 we’ve made it so that it’s really to your advantage to do so. Now you can keep all your customer details and all your order details in one big database, and easily export the data into a spreadsheet to do some analysis. (Well, just customers for now, but I’ve made a note to add orders too.)

There’s now not one but FOUR ways to get customers and orders into SmartDD.

#1 – PayPal
#2 – ClickBank
#3 – Free sign up to a mailing list
#4 – Manually

That means you can have one site (or eBay) selling goods by PayPal, another by ClickBank, and another where you can give products away in return for an email address. (You ALWAYS use double opt-in right? Let’s be responsible folks.)

It also means you can easily give your products to your Joint Venture partners *securely* by manually creating an order. It takes about 30 seconds or less to add a customer (depending on how fast you can type or copy and paste), and then a few seconds more to create an order and tell SmartDD to send out an email to them.

You also have a choice of two different affiliate schemes you can run.

#1 – PayPal email address
#2 – ClickBank

Up until the introduction of the PayPal email address method with the release of the 7 Dollar Script, I’d only ever seen something called “split pay” using PayPal. The split pay method is a nightmare and involved your customer making TWO payments, one to your affiliate and one to you before they got your product. There were too many things that could go wrong (refunds – erk!), and needless to say, no-one was happy with that and it wasn’t long before PayPal said no more.

But the 7 Dollar Method was a good ‘un and works on the principle of rotating the full amount of the payment between the site owner and the affiliate. It all averages out over a few sales.

Your affiliates simply create a URL that looks like this:-

http://www.domain.com/?e=PayPalEmailAddress

and then depending on the percentage commission being paid, they get some of the sales paid directly into their PayPal account. If a refund is required and it happens to be the affiliate who received that payment, it’s tough, but they’re the ones who have to refund it – PayPal is quite definite about that. They’re not going to chase someone who hasn’t received any money, they’re going to chase the person who did.

Since then there have been a few scripts that use this method, and we introduced it into SmartDD v3, with a slight modification. Even if the commission payment is set to 100%, the admin gets all of the first payment, and the affiliate gets all the rest. We did that to stop people from getting a product for free by buying from their own business account with their personal account.

Using ClickBank is even easier. First you copy and paste the return code from SmartDD into your ClickBank sellers account(s).

Then all you need do is create the publisher name in SmartDD and add the secret key that ClickBank supply you with. Next, go to the saleable items panel in SmartDD and create or amend an item, select the publisher and enter the number of the product you’re selling via ClickBank – usually number 1.

Lastly, go to the code generator for that item, and generate the code to add to your sales button on your sales page.

Easy.

Your affiliates then use a normal CB hoplink and get paid by ClickBank as usual a couple of weeks after the sale.

At sale time, ClickBank sends SmartDD the transaction details and SmartDD generates an order. On your customers return from ClickBank (via the return code you pasted into your sellers account), SmartDD redirects them to the download page and also sends them an email with the transaction details and a link to the download page for future reference.

Job done.

The download pages in all cases can be on your single site installation of SmartDD, with the payment buttons etc being on all your satellite sites. The download pages themselves are all held within the SmartDD database, and can be created to look just like your original sales page on the satellite site.

All you need to do is create the download page with an HTML editor (I prefer Dreamweaver) using your satellite site template and make sure that all the links to objects such as graphics and CSS files are direct URLs rather than relative one. So you *wouldn’t* use:-

/images/header.jpg

to refer to your header graphic, you’d use:-

http://www.satellite-domain.com/images/header.jpg

That way the main site with SmartDD installed on it would be able to display the graphics correctly from your satellite site. And of course the same applies for the CSS files.

Once that download template is created in SmartDD, it doesn’t matter where the order has come from, the generated download page will work perfectly.

As you can see, we’ve put a lot of thought into making SmartDD as flexible as possible, and we’ve got some more goodies to come.

Let’s not forget the existing eBay functionality too, and of course Kunaki integration.

The next minor release of SmartDD will contain membership abilities and subscriptions support.

Then we’ll be able to truly say that SmartDD is a cross between the Butterfly Marketing script, JV Manager / Fantasos, the 7 Dollar Script, RAPS, Auction Acrobat and Disc Mojo all rolled into one, and all usable from a single site.

Is that good value for money or what?

Is it? Then go promote it as such. :)

-Frank Haywood

By |November 24th, 2008|internet business|8 Comments

TicketDesk Pro v1.2

In case you missed it the other week, or you’ve dropped off the mailing list, there’s a new version of TicketDesk Pro been released, v1.2. This addresses a bug mainly for moderators where they only have certain departments allocated to them.

We think most people using TicketDesk Pro won’t have fallen foul of it as only two people spotted it, pretty much at the same time, but it’s a good idea to grab the update. I’m not sure if I’ve also mentioned there’s a German language file included too. This was kindly donated by Sebastian Schertel of http://www.perfect-marketing.de/.

Also, I’ve decided to scrap the use of JV Manager to handle the sales process of my products and I’ll be using SmartDD for everything instead.

It makes sense for a number of reasons. SmartDD now supports ClickBank as well as PayPal and is a lot simpler to use. The functionality of SmartDD is also very similar to JVM, but more logical.

And of course SmartDD is in active development. Did I mention we’re working on membership functionality within SmartDD? Paul tells me it’s 2/3rds done, so that’s something to look forward to. It will be a minor v3.x release, so you’ll get that upgrade for free if you’ve already purchased v3.

The main reason I’ve dropped JV Manager is because I monitor the flow through my sites. When I flipped the TicketDesk Pro site over to JVM, I saw a huge increase in abandonment on the pages where the customer / prospect is asked to enter their email address. And also on the following page where the customer / prospect is asked to enter their name, address etc. details.

I spent a good few hours searching for the code that forces that, tried a few things to remove it, tried some other stuff like changing the fields to say “optional”, but it made no difference. Eventually I decided enough was enough – I’d spent far too much time fiddling with it – and since I’d first installed it, we’d released SmartDD v3 which now handles ClickBank sales and has a simple affiliate scheme for PayPal.

So that was that.

In case you were wondering, the correct process is to only ask for a name and email address if you’re giving something away. If you’re selling, make the sale FIRST, then gather their details afterwards, and give your customers a choice of whether or not they join the mailing list.

Now I’m using a single installation of SmartDD on one site and letting that handle the sales process of all my other products. Eventually I’ll also flip the SmartDD site over to it as well (currently running on the Butterfly Marketing script), but not until memberships are working. It will take a while as there are something like 15,000 members now. Even with a bit of custom migration code, it will still take a while to get right, but will all be worth it in the long run.

Hmm, I can feel a bit of discussion about the abilities of SmartDD v3 coming on, so let’s save that for another post.

-Frank Haywood

By |November 24th, 2008|internet business|11 Comments

SmartDD V3 – Free Sign Ups Video

Following the delay caused by my main PC becoming infected with various bits of nasty stuff, I’ve now uploaded the latest SmartDD V3 video.

This one explains how to use SmartDD with Aweber to both sign up your new prospect to your mailing list and also generate a customer record and an order within SmartDD so that your prospect gets a secure download.

This functionality has been one of the top three asked for features to be put into SmartDD.  It seems there are plenty of SmartDD users who want to give their normally paid-for products away, without allowing global free access.

Well now you can do it.

Although this example uses Aweber (the service I currently use), you should be able to adapt it to any autoresponder service or self-hosted script with a little thought.  If you use another service such as Get Response or Email Aces, and can’t work out how to integrate the form code, then please raise a support ticket and we’ll see if we can’t help you sort it out.

The video can be found here:-

http://www.smartdd.com/videos/free-sign-ups-with-smartdd/

and if you need to you can raise a support ticket here:-

http://www.vendiva.com/support/

-Frank Haywood

By |November 2nd, 2008|internet business|Comments Off on SmartDD V3 – Free Sign Ups Video

SmartDD v3 Videos

The first of the new SmartDD videos are up.

I apologise for the delay in doing this, it was because of some reported bugs that it now looks like we’ve completely cleared (so far).  Those bugs were:-

#1 – A foreach() error on the Inventory page for some server configurations.
#2 – No records on the Customer Search page.
#3 – The free sign up form was broken for some reason – we spotted that one.

So, onto the new videos.  Two so far on using Kunaki and ClickBank with SmartDD, and you can find links to them on the videos page on the SmartDD.com site, or you can just go to them directly here:-

http://www.smartdd.com/videos/using-kunaki-with-smartdd/

http://www.smartdd.com/videos/using-clickbank-with-smartdd/

More to follow tomorrow.

-Frank Haywood

By |October 30th, 2008|internet business|Comments Off on SmartDD v3 Videos

SmartDD V3 – A Few Bugs

Well, we knew it was inevitable.  There’s a LOT of code in SmartDD v3 and so we would have been surprised if there wasn’t a single bug when we released it.

We’ve fixed the two reported now, and also spotted a third which has also been fixed.  Answering the support tickets and duplicating the circumstances that have caused the bugs has taken quite a while, and so I had to put the videos and docs back a few days while we sorted everything else out.

You can probably appreciate it’s been *very* time consuming and I think Paul is probably fed up of me by now.  And maybe you are too.

You can grab the hotfix for the FULL version here:-

http://www.smartdd.com/v3_hotfix/smartdd-hotfix-v3-01.zip

Just unzip to your hard drive retaining the folder structure within the zip, then FTP all the files up to your v3 installation, overwriting the existing files.  FileZilla will do a perfect job of it for you.

If you’ve already downloaded but not installed v3, delete it and grab a new copy from the members area.  It’s been updated with all the changes in the hotfix above.

Now that the bugs have been sorted I’ll start to release the videos showing you how to use the new features.

-Frank Haywood

By |October 29th, 2008|internet business|1 Comment