Please Stop Doing This

by Zeus66
155 replies
If you sell instantly downloadable products online, for the love of all that's unholy...

STOP FORCING US TO OPT IN AND CONFIRM BEFORE YOU GIVE US THE DAMN PRODUCT WE JUST PAID YOU FOR!!!

It's completely unethical and all it does is make me want to do a 'spite chargeback' or sign YOU up to about 50 obnoxious lists and make you wade through the confirmation emails.

At the very least, make it totally plain ON YOUR FREAKING SALES PAGE that your price is not simply the money you're asking for, but also my contact info. Because that is a form of payment, too.

Making me opt in to your list to get what I just paid you money for makes me instantly suspicious of whatever you just sold me, and I'm just going to unsubscribe immediately anyway. So all you've accomplished is the assurance that I'll never buy anything from you again, and you won't be able to try to sell me anything via emails.

Good job, dumba**.

John
#forced opt in #stop #unethical
  • Profile picture of the author Allan V
    I've noticed this seems to be a growing trend. I've had to opt in and confirm after making purchases a few times to access my download. I'm with you, they ain't getting any more sales from me in future! With one of them I had to confirm my request to unsubscribe, twice!?!
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  • Profile picture of the author Jesus Perez
    That's what I love about DLGuard. Seamless optins after purchase.
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  • Profile picture of the author John Romaine
    John this is an interesting point for me, as I have a site setup just like this.

    Why?

    I have two lists for the one site.

    1. One for people who optin to my FREEBIES list ....
    2. One for actual paying customers.

    Now the reason I have it setup seperately is that I have a rule set within Aweber to remove any paying customers from the FREEBIES list, as the emails are of a completely different nature - depending upon the actions of the customer. Theres no point trying to sell the ebook continously over a period of weeks when they have already bought it. Make sense?

    This is why I have them optin before downloading.

    I guess I need to rethink this approach.

    What is a viable solution????
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    • Profile picture of the author Lance K
      Originally Posted by ramone_johnny View Post

      John this is an interesting point for me, as I have a site setup just like this.

      Why?

      I have two lists for the one site.

      1. One for people who optin to my FREEBIES list ....
      2. One for actual paying customers.

      Now the reason I have it setup seperately is that I have a rule set within Aweber to remove any paying customers from the FREEBIES list, as the emails are of a completely different nature - depending upon the actions of the customer. Theres no point trying to sell the ebook continously over a period of weeks when they have already bought it. Make sense?

      This is why I have them optin before downloading.

      I guess I need to rethink this approach.

      What is a viable solution????

      Use an autoresponder that doesn't require confirmation of opt-ins. Then you can automatically remove a name from your prospect list and add it to your customer list.
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    • Profile picture of the author thegamecat
      Originally Posted by ramone_johnny View Post

      John this is an interesting point for me, as I have a site setup just like this.

      Why?

      I have two lists for the one site.

      1. One for people who optin to my FREEBIES list ....
      2. One for actual paying customers.

      Now the reason I have it setup seperately is that I have a rule set within Aweber to remove any paying customers from the FREEBIES list, as the emails are of a completely different nature - depending upon the actions of the customer. Theres no point trying to sell the ebook continously over a period of weeks when they have already bought it. Make sense?

      This is why I have them optin before downloading.

      I guess I need to rethink this approach.

      What is a viable solution????
      Just update the list with a flag to state whether they bought or not.
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  • Profile picture of the author LMC
    John,

    While I agree with you completely.

    A method we use that seems to make sense, show better business practice, and more integrity is after the purchase, follow up with the buyer asking if they liked your product and offering them a link to sign up to your list. Obviously this creates a much targeted list because they actually want to be on it if they follow the link.

    It still boggles my mind why people force people into lists, the point of a list is to find targeted individuals who want to know more about your company, products, or services. Not just to boost your aweber numbers.

    Cool you may have 1,000 opt-ins but I got 200 that produce $10,000 every mailing because they are high-end targeted buyers.... people just don't get it sometimes.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Romaine
      Originally Posted by LMC View Post

      John,

      While I agree with you completely.

      A method we use that seems to make sense, show better business practice, and more integrity is after the purchase, follow up with the buyer asking if they liked your product.
      Thanks for pointing this out LMC. Another reason to have them sign up on a different list (second optin in) Customer follow up - feedback.
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    • Profile picture of the author ozespirit
      That does make a lot of sense. I am only in the early days of monetising my websites so will take that as advice when I set it up
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  • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
    Hey guys... Honestly, I don't even mind being forced to opt in when I buy something. Just tell me up front! That way I'm not surprised and I don't feel like the price you quoted was lower than the bill ended up being. Beyond that, I just don't think it's smart marketing. Hey, maybe the dude has tested it and I'm all wet here. Just because I don't like it doesn't mean it's necessarily a bad idea. But it did p*ss me off.

    John
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  • Profile picture of the author James Schramko
    Have the client opt-in on the download page with the product and explain WHY people should sign up.

    The other option is to parse with Aweber etc... and have a welcome message saying that they have just been sent a clients update email they may wish to confirm.
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  • Profile picture of the author patJ
    I agree. When you purhcase something you should get the product right away. Imagine going to the groceries, paying for your stuff, but before you can exit the store you have to watch a 1 minute long commercial.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Romaine
      Originally Posted by patJ View Post

      I agree. When you purhcase something you should get the product right away. Imagine going to the groceries, paying for your stuff, but before you can exit the store you have to watch a 1 minute long commercial.
      Hilarious!!!
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      • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
        The answer to the problem lies in one of John's replies. It's the 'ambush' feeling he doesn't like. not the opt-in. Kill the ambush by being more transparent.

        If you can't make the process invisible, position it as a plus for the buyer.

        "Now that you own XYZ, you're special to us. In fact, we have a special mailing list just for product owners, where we share updates, tips and more. Right before we take you to the download page, we'll ask for your name and email address. Our list manager insists that we make you click a confirmation link they send out - sorry about that. To make up for the trouble, we're including a surprise bonus on the download page, which we think you'll love.

        One more thing, now that you've joined the elite group of XYZ owners, we can stop sending you more reasons to buy it, right? As an owner, you get more good content without the sales messages."

        The copy is rough, off the top of my head, but the idea is to make the second opt-in a normal and desirable part of the process rather than a hostile surprise...
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        • What he said

          But it doesn't even need to be that involved. When you go to the download page just give me two options: I can download the product immediately without the optin OR I can optin - but then give me a reason for opting in. That's where the sales copy comes in where you tell me I'll get great USEFUL content, free updates, discounts on future purchases, etc. etc. for opting in.

          This issue in general hasn't bothered me as it's standard fare these days. I can't even think the last time I didn't have to optin (except maybe the Backlinks Bully guy). I'll either give one of my junk emails or unsubscribe immediately if the product is crap or the emails I get are junk.

          Travis

          Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

          The answer to the problem lies in one of John's replies. It's the 'ambush' feeling he doesn't like. not the opt-in. Kill the ambush by being more transparent.

          If you can't make the process invisible, position it as a plus for the buyer.

          "Now that you own XYZ, you're special to us. In fact, we have a special mailing list just for product owners, where we share updates, tips and more. Right before we take you to the download page, we'll ask for your name and email address. Our list manager insists that we make you click a confirmation link they send out - sorry about that. To make up for the trouble, we're including a surprise bonus on the download page, which we think you'll love.

          One more thing, now that you've joined the elite group of XYZ owners, we can stop sending you more reasons to buy it, right? As an owner, you get more good content without the sales messages."

          The copy is rough, off the top of my head, but the idea is to make the second opt-in a normal and desirable part of the process rather than a hostile surprise...
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          • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
            Originally Posted by kennethtang View Post

            Hehehe...

            If I bought a ticket and is about to enter the cinema and you stop me, saying that I MUST fill in a contact form, I gonna punch you in the nose, period (and kick you in the nuts, or vice-versa). But that's just me.

            Kenneth
            Kenneth, at the risk of taking this thread a little off-kilter, if I were running a cinema and wanted to pull an asinine stunt like that, I would not be the one you were taking a swing at...

            Here in America, you would be swinging at the 6'5", 300 lb. nose tackle from the local football team, who likes a little pocket money and free movie tickets. Take the swing or kick anyway, and he'd have some leeway in "restraining" you until the local law picked you up for attempted battery. Enjoy the night in jail, tough guy.
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    • Profile picture of the author nmh
      Originally Posted by patJ View Post

      I agree. When you purhcase something you should get the product right away. Imagine going to the groceries, paying for your stuff, but before you can exit the store you have to watch a 1 minute long commercial.

      OMG!! Classic! Hilarious. Great analogy.
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      • Profile picture of the author Chuck Staff
        Wow.

        You can learn a lot of 'stuff' about a lot of different 'stuff' here on the WF.

        You can learn important 'stuff' you never thought was important before 'cause it doesn't always occur to you that we aren't all the same and we don't all think about 'stuff' the same way...

        Knowing how different people think about different 'stuff' can make you a better marketer.

        Thanks for all your input. Seriously. I've actually learned a LOT from this thread.

        Chuck

        PS: Jason Moffat & Big Mike: Different is good... Appreciate all THREE of your opinions.
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        • Profile picture of the author Achilles1963
          Originally Posted by Chuck Staff View Post

          Wow.

          You can learn a lot of 'stuff' about a lot of different 'stuff' here on the WF.

          You can learn important 'stuff' you never thought was important before 'cause it doesn't always occur to you that we aren't all the same and we don't all think about 'stuff' the same way...

          Knowing how different people think about different 'stuff' can make you a better marketer.

          Thanks for all your input. Seriously. I've actually learned a LOT from this thread.

          Chuck

          PS: Jason Moffat & Big Mike: Different is good... Appreciate all THREE of your opinions.
          LOL Actually, it's always been taken as an article of faith among professional salesman that bad salesman talk and good salesman listen to their customers, after all how can you overcome the objections of your potential customers unless you ask them what their objection are.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike Hill
    Well I don't think it's unethical but can hurt future sales and increase refunds. No one is being hurt by this and you are getting the product so it comes down to asking the question "Is this a good business model?" Only the product owner can answer that one based on feedback, refund rate and unhappy campers...

    Nothing unethical about it...

    If you were having it shipped you'd certainly have to input your details for that. getting an instant delivery doesn't negate the fact of imputing your information. It's just business so if you are that upset about it don't order anything from them in the future.

    Doing a refund request based on the fact you had to input your email address is stealing in my opinion because you'll get what you paid for. Now if the product was crap or something like that then a refund would be warranted but based on a process, come one, that's pathetic!

    Mike Hill

    PS. I always make opting in an "option" on my download page, right below the product download link so they can get future support and FREE upgrades.
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    • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
      Nothing unethical about it...
      Really? You don't see anything unethical about requiring a confirmed opt in before giving a paying customer what he's just ordered, when you didn't make this a condition of the sale on your sales page? Frankly, that surprises me and disappoints me about you, Mike.

      If you were having it shipped you'd certainly have to input your details for that. getting an instant delivery doesn't negate the fact of imputing your information.
      But it's not being shipped. If it was, I'd EXPECT to have to put in my details. In fact, I'd be worried if they did NOT ask for those details during the order process. Getting an instant download absolutely does negate the need for such info. Forcing opt-ins as a condition of the sale is completely unnecessary. Requiring shipping details for a physcial product is obviously completely necessary.

      Your point here is ridiculous. Sorry, but it is.

      Doing a refund request based on the fact you had to input your email address is stealing in my opinion because you'll get what you paid for.
      Again, your sense of right and wrong is screwy here. I was not informed prior to payment that an additional condition of the sale (an additional payment, as it were) was going to be required before I could access the product. I paid for it. Get it? I was not given access to it until I not only opted in, but confirmed that opt-in. The vendor lied. Do you see that?

      It was a lie of omission, plain and simple. Put that on the sales page and let me decide before I pay you. As it was, I bought the product under false pretenses. If you cannot see this basic fact, well I think that's sad.

      Now if the product was crap or something like that then a refund would be warranted but based on a process, come one, that's pathetic!
      Wow. So as long as the product is satisfactory, then it doesn't matter to you what happens in the actual sales process? Man, I gotta tell you, Mike... I won't be buying anything from you. I'm sure you can live without my purchases, but this was very eye opening for me. I'm kinda bummed out, actually.

      John
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      • Profile picture of the author Mike Hill
        Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

        Really? You don't see anything unethical about requiring a confirmed opt in before giving a paying customer what he's just ordered, when you didn't make this a condition of the sale on your sales page? Frankly, that surprises me and disappoints me about you, Mike.



        But it's not being shipped. If it was, I'd EXPECT to have to put in my details. In fact, I'd be worried if they did NOT ask for those details during the order process. Getting an instant download absolutely does negate the need for such info. Forcing opt-ins as a condition of the sale is completely unnecessary. Requiring shipping details for a physcial product is obviously completely necessary.

        Your point here is ridiculous. Sorry, but it is.



        Again, your sense of right and wrong is screwy here. I was not informed prior to payment that an additional condition of the sale (an additional payment, as it were) was going to be required before I could access the product. I paid for it. Get it? I was not given access to it until I not only opted in, but confirmed that opt-in. The vendor lied. Do you see that?

        It was a lie of omission, plain and simple. Put that on the sales page and let me decide before I pay you. As it was, I bought the product under false pretenses. If you cannot see this basic fact, well I think that's sad.



        Wow. So as long as the product is satisfactory, then it doesn't matter to you what happens in the actual sales process? Man, I gotta tell you, Mike... I won't be buying anything from you. I'm sure you can live without my purchases, but this was very eye opening for me. I'm kinda bummed out, actually.

        John

        Well whatever, we are all entitled to our opinions and it doesn't make us bad people if we differ in our opinions. I didn't say I did it (READ MY P.S.) I just figure it's a fairly petty argument and far from unethical.

        If you were actually ripped off (Didn't get the product delivered to you)... now that's unethical... opting into a list before getting a product... I mean come on, there are more serious things in this world than that.

        And saying you won't buy any of my products now... That's your loss and quite frankly I thought you had more integrity than to base an opinion on the future of all my products.

        Disagreeing on something is one thing but to create such a show of defiance based on an opinion is ludicrous at best...

        Good luck with your future endeavors...

        Mike Hill

        PS. I always make opting in an "option" on my download page, right below the product download link so they can get future support and FREE upgrades.
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeDub
      Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

      Hey guys... Honestly, I don't even mind being forced to opt in when I buy something. Just tell me up front! That way I'm not surprised and I don't feel like the price you quoted was lower than the bill ended up being. Beyond that, I just don't think it's smart marketing.
      John
      Originally Posted by Mike Hill View Post

      Well I don't think it's unethical but can hurt future sales and increase refunds.
      I'm right there with you two (and maybe more...), in that I don't really think it's all that smart, especially in this day with all of the spam floating around.

      Now, I own my own domain and site (as I'm sure so many of you do) and this is the type of thing that gets me to create a new e-mail address (or at very least forwarder) and use that address for these 'opt in' things in order to get product. Then once the confirmation is done, BAM there goes that e-mail address or forwarder. That's why I don't think it's really all that smart, as I'm sure I cannot be the only one that does that. Then again, I haven't read this whole thread (yet) so maybe quite a few others have said and done the same (in that case apologies to everyone for posting what others have said).

      Mike
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  • Profile picture of the author TheRichJerksNet
    I hate to say it but it is a growing trend because many times all you ever hear is:

    "The Money Is In The List"
    "Make Sure You Have A Opt-In Form On Your Site"
    "Always Make Sure To Get Your Visitors Contact Info"

    And this list goes on and on. Point is it is preached about left and right about how you must have a list to be successful.. This is not the truth but that is a post for another day.

    Personally I do not signup to list, the only ones I am on is the ones from my "membership" sites I have joined.

    I removed the annoying popup off my sites months ago and I do not miss them one single bit..

    James
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  • Profile picture of the author Colin Evans
    I get pretty good optin rates by placing the optin form on the product download pages. The optin rate is actually much higher than I ever expected so I've just carried on doing the same...
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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Moffatt
    I prefer to avoid selling anything to a guy like Zeus. If he gets that bent out of shape for opting into a list designed to create less hassle for him, better service him as a customer, and avoid further repeat pitches, I can't imagine what kinds of other sh*t he would b*tch about?
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    • Profile picture of the author Harvey Segal
      Originally Posted by Jason Moffatt View Post

      If he gets that bent out of shape for opting into a list designed to create less hassle for him, better service him as a customer, and avoid further repeat pitches, I can't imagine what kinds of other sh*t he would b*tch about?
      ... that he had to unzip a file ?


      Harvey
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      • Profile picture of the author Allen Lewis
        Originally Posted by Harvey.Segal View Post

        ... that he had to unzip a file ?


        Harvey
        ...or maybe enter a login and password.

        Allen
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      • Profile picture of the author Jeremy Kelsall
        John,

        I'm actually moving towards having people opt-in when they buy something for the simple fact that it is a pain in the ass when they don't.

        I update something and then have to answer email after email after email with the update link instead of just sending one email out one time to get the link to everyone.

        Honestly, as a seller you are doing your customer a disservice by not having them opt-in.

        I'm not sure what product you are talking about specifically and don't really know the process that they used - It sounds like it could have been better, but ultimately having you opt-in allows him/her to service you better as a customer.

        Some might say that it should be an option and your right, but if you don't opt-in you should forfeit your rights to updates on the product.
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    • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
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      • Profile picture of the author Jason Moffatt
        Originally Posted by BIG Mike View Post

        Let's be real here - it's only less hassle for the seller, who chooses to use a third party service instead of their own and not automate the list segregation process in the first place.

        And the entire tone of your comments are out of line...
        No, it's a hassle for the customer to receive 25 more emails asking him to buy the same product he already bought. So you are wrong. It's a pain in the ass for both sides.

        Yes, I could use a different service that automates the process, but I don't.

        As far as my comments being out of line... cry me a river dude.
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        • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
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          • Profile picture of the author Jason Moffatt
            Originally Posted by BIG Mike View Post

            Cry yourself a river - you actively choose to make it a pain in the ass for your customers. And obviously don't have a clue about why you're doing it in the first place...

            Sheesh...
            Oh yeah, I forgot, I'm a retard.

            Unlike many of you, I don't know how to do a bunch of techy stuff on the intronets. I'm just good at selling stuff and making good product.

            Last time I checked it seemed to be working out pretty well for me, and my customers.
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          • Profile picture of the author Achilles1963
            I agree with Zeus, Big Mike, and Alexa all the way, I've been an offline sales and marketing guy for a very long time, and I've watched a lot of new salesman (less than 5-10 yrs exp) lose their moral and ethical focus in the interest of increased profits, KNOCK IT OFF!!!, attitudes like those expressed on this page are reminiscent of telemarketers calling people away from the dinner table, telephone companies selling your personal information to mailing lists, and a lot of other crummy things.

            I don't like it, and I won't do business with people of this calibre.
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      • Profile picture of the author Pnigro
        I need to force opt-in because I use Clickbank with Aweber and as far as I know this is the only way to automatically remove them from my prospect list. That way they will stop receiving emails telling them to buy something they already bought.

        Sorry OP.
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        • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
          Originally Posted by Pnigro View Post

          I need to force opt-in because I use Clickbank with Aweber and as far as I know this is the only way to automatically remove them from my prospect list. That way they will stop receiving emails telling them to buy something they already bought.

          Sorry OP.
          For about the 100th time now... TELL THEM ON YOUR SALES PAGE. Don't give the impression that it's going to be a straight pay-and-get-download transaction and only after they've paid spring it on them that they must opt-in to get the thing they just bought under what you've just made false pretenses.

          I really cannot believe this glaringly obvious and simple solution is eluding so many "marketers." Do you not care about the relationship with your customers? Seriously, think this stuff through. FULL DISCLOSURE = HAPPY CUSTOMERS because you left them a choice. NON-DISCLOSURE of something INTEGRAL to the receipt of the product you're selling = PISSING PEOPLE OFF.

          The only extra step for you as a seller is one freaking line on your sales page by the order form that you require their contact info and confirmation prior to being able to download the product. Can this get any more basic???

          John
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          • Profile picture of the author Pnigro
            Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

            For about the 100th time now... TELL THEM ON YOUR SALES PAGE. Don't give the impression that it's going to be a straight pay-and-get-download transaction and only after they've paid spring it on them that they must opt-in to get the thing they just bought under what you've just made false pretenses.

            I really cannot believe this glaringly obvious and simple solution is eluding so many "marketers." Do you not care about the relationship with your customers? Seriously, think this stuff through. FULL DISCLOSURE = HAPPY CUSTOMERS because you left them a choice. NON-DISCLOSURE of something INTEGRAL to the receipt of the product you're selling = PISSING PEOPLE OFF.
            For abouth the 100th time now...

            Most people won't complain about such a trivial thing if you explain it to them on the opt-in form.

            Something like: "Hey, it's Pnigro here. I want you to ask one last favor please. I need you to put your email address so I can stay in contact with you, offer you support, send you updates about your product, and remove you from my prospect list. I hope you understand."

            I really cannot believe this glaringly obvious and simple solution is eluding so many "customers".
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            • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
              For abouth the 100th time now...

              Most people won't complain about such a trivial thing if you explain it to them on the opt-in form.
              For about the 100th time now: Some won't care. Some will, and will just add some negative karma to you in their minds. Some will decide they don't want to bother with you in the future at all. Some will report you to the various entities you use for the process, who may (as Paypal does, along with some autoresponder/list service) have rules against it.

              We've been over this. You don't need an opt-in to provide updates. You don't need an email address confirmed on a list to provide support. Claiming you need either of those, for those purposes, says you're either uninformed or lying.

              Giving someone the option of signing up accomplishes your purposes, and theirs, without forcing them to do something that amounts to an extra term of sale to which they may not agree.

              Why do you object to making it optional? If you explain the benefits and they decide they'd rather not, they're not going to get mad at you later. That is, the 10% or less who typically will choose not to sign up. Most will cheerfully enter their addresses.

              It becomes a bonus, instead of a burden. Which way would you like to be seen by your paying customers?

              The problem isn't with them. It's with the ones who want the product and don't care to get more email about it. Of any kind.


              Paul
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              • Profile picture of the author Pnigro
                Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                We've been over this. You don't need an opt-in to provide updates. You don't need an email address confirmed on a list to provide support. Claiming you need either of those, for those purposes, says you're either uninformed or lying.
                I use Aweber and Clickbank.

                When people buy from me, I must remove them from my prospect list, or else they are going to keep receiving emails telling them to buy something they already bought.

                Please enlighten me, how can I do that without using a second opt-in form after they buy?

                Remember, I use Aweber and Clickbank.

                Looking forward to hear your "informed" solution.
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                • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                  Please enlighten me, how can I do that without using a second opt-in form after they buy?
                  I didn't say you shouldn't use one. I said it should be optional. Provide the form, with an explanation, and a way to download the product if they don't wish to subscribe.

                  Is that somehow difficult to understand? It's only been suggested a dozen times or so, in this thread alone.

                  Remember, I use Aweber and Clickbank.

                  Looking forward to hear your "informed" solution.
                  First, I'd ask Aweber customer service if they believe you should be using a FORCED opt-in before giving people what they already paid for. Check with Clickbank, too, as they just might object. Paypal does, and Clickbank has deals with Paypal which might preclude this practice... (oooops)

                  Second... make it optional. (He said, redundantly.)

                  You could try DLguard, which can do the auto-subscribe. It doesn't trigger Aweber's automation rules, though, if the address used to subscribe is not the same as their Paypal address. Which is why making it optional is best, along with a reminder to use the same address to which the initial email was sent.

                  I repeat the question: Why do you object to making it optional? Or, as we in the trade call it, "giving the customer a choice."

                  Because some of them might have different preferences from yours? Because you can't then market to those people through the new autoresponder sequence?

                  Why?


                  Paul
                  Signature
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                  Stop by Paul's Pub - my little hangout on Facebook.

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                  • Profile picture of the author Lance K
                    Paul, you rock. Always have, always will.

                    The reason WHY some poeple object to making it optional is that they have a sacrcity mindset. Honestly, that's the ONLY reason I can come up with. And that's all I have to say in this matter.
                    Signature
                    "You can have everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want."
                    ~ Zig Ziglar
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                  • Profile picture of the author Pnigro
                    Giving them the option to opt-in or not is stupid because if they decide to NOT opt-in then they will keep receiving promotional emails forever, which will surely make them very angry.

                    I think 100% of my customers would rather opt-in for one last time than keep receiving promotional emails over and over again.

                    This is ridiculous.

                    What a bunch of crybabies.

                    "Mommy! He made me opt-in! I won't ever buy anything from him again!"

                    Unbelievable.

                    I'm out of this thread.
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          • Profile picture of the author Mike Anthony
            Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

            For about the 100th time now... TELL THEM ON YOUR SALES PAGE. Don't give the impression that it's going to be a straight pay-and-get-download transaction and only after they've paid spring it on them that they must opt-in to get the thing they just bought under what you've just made false pretenses.
            No lie. Might not have been 100 times but I am surprised how often you have said your main objection was not being told beforehand. I can't see the problem with notifying the buyer of the FULL process of delivery as you would say ON THE SALES PAGE.

            To those that object heres the facts. One guy feels that you should notify the buyer at the point of sale. He has been thanked several times by others that feel the same way. Take it as some market data. There's a segment of your market that objects. Don't want the additional sales then thats okay but if you do then take it as feedback.
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            • Profile picture of the author Mike Anthony
              On the other hand Zeuss/John (newbie here) I think what you are hearing back is that the sellers here don't find that most of their buyers object. So you have to accept that too. At the end of the day they get to run their business the way they want. Thats one of the benefits of IM. I agree its annoying but I can't find really solid ground to claim its unethical. Maybe borderline so I personally would stay away from it and do it the way you suggested. Live and let live.
              Signature

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              • Profile picture of the author Pnigro
                Originally Posted by Mike Anthony View Post

                On the other hand Zeuss/John (newbie here) I think what you are hearing back is that the sellers here don't find that most of their buyers object. So you have to accept that too. At the end of the day they get to run their business the way they want. Thats one of the benefits of IM. I agree its annoying but I can't find really solid ground to claim its unethical. Maybe borderline so I personally would stay away from it and do it the way you suggested. Live and let live.
                Yeah just because someone says it's unethical doesn't make it unethical.
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            • Profile picture of the author Pnigro
              Originally Posted by Mike Anthony View Post

              To those that object heres the facts. One guy feels that you should notify the buyer at the point of sale. He has been thanked several times by others that feel the same way. Take it as some market data. There's a segment of your market that objects. Don't want the additional sales then thats okay but if you do then take it as feedback.
              My market is not the "make money online" market.

              My market is not the Warrior Forum.

              I have totally different market.

              Sorry.
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              • Profile picture of the author Mike Anthony
                Originally Posted by Pnigro View Post

                My market is not the "make money online" market.

                My market is not the Warrior Forum.

                I have totally different market.

                Sorry.
                Your market is human beings. The sentiments on here are from human beings and frankly its just common sense. When people have bought something and felt they have fulfilled their side and should now get the product some part of the human population will always resent doing something more they didn't know about.

                Presumably your product is also a downloadable product or else it doesn't have anything to do with the Op's point.

                No need to be sorry. Your accepting or rejecting anything has no impact on me whatsoever.
                Signature

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    • Profile picture of the author kenboss
      Originally Posted by Jason Moffatt View Post

      I prefer to avoid selling anything to a guy like Zeus. If he gets that bent out of shape for opting into a list designed to create less hassle for him, better service him as a customer, and avoid further repeat pitches, I can't imagine what kinds of other sh*t he would b*tch about?
      I don't think it's a question of being bent out of shape, it's only that these threads can sometimes inflate a simple honest vent into a major moan - such is the nature of the forum beast!

      But I'm sorry Jason, I have to say I'm with the o.p.
      I hope you will still consider selling things to me!

      I just think it's really annoying when the choice is not offered. If it's going to create less hassle, better service, and no repeat pitches, then why force it, why not just tell us that?? Why not take the opportunity of deepening the customer relationship by explaining, in a couple of sentences, why it would be a great idea to opt in here, "so that you can join our exclusive notification list" (or whatever). If they really don't get it, you can have a "no thanks just take me to my product" link, but wouldn't you agree that those who do get it will feel good about opting in and are likely to be higher quality subscribers?

      Related to this, I also find the following really annoying: I clink on a link within an email sent by someone whose list I am already on, purely seeking the info they have invited me to seek, and then forced to opt-in to their list again before I can get to wherever the link is going!?!
      I am not talking about being sent to another marketer's squeeze page, I am referring to those times when it is clearly the same marketer.

      Now, before anyone goes ballistic on my bottom, yes i personally KNOW why some marketers like to channel people into separate lists for specific purposes, but as a Subscriber I don't know that, it's usually not clear. And if they don't bother to give any explanation, then for all I know I'm just getting caught in some stupid loop because the marketer doesn't know what they are doing and I end up getting all their emails in triplicate. Which HAS happened, bending me out of shape on several occasions !

      We're a society that loves to be kept INFORMED, like when the dentist says, OK I am just going to insert something excruciating into your gum, but in just ten short minutes you won't feel a thing! LOL

      Just my 3 cents worth.

      Ken
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      • Profile picture of the author Michael Shook
        OK, the sales page is good. Check.
        I can afford it. Check.
        I've got a couple of hours to enjoy reading my new ebook on how to train my dog to make sausages. Check.

        Oops, can't get my product yet, gotta put my email in this little box BEFORE I CAN READ MY BOOK knowing full well that I am going to get a series of "selling me more stuff" emails.

        Clickbank 60 day refund policy in place. Check.
        GMail filters in place. Check.

        Why bother to unsubscribe and get the little questionaire asking why I unsubscribed when Gmail makes it so easy to filter emails.
        Signature


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      • Profile picture of the author Jason Moffatt
        Originally Posted by kenboss View Post

        I don't think it's a question of being bent out of shape, it's only that these threads can sometimes inflate a simple honest vent into a major moan - such is the nature of the forum beast!

        But I'm sorry Jason, I have to say I'm with the o.p.
        I hope you will still consider selling things to me!

        I just think it's really annoying when the choice is not offered. If it's going to create less hassle, better service, and no repeat pitches, then why force it, why not just tell us that?? Why not take the opportunity of deepening the customer relationship by explaining, in a couple of sentences, why it would be a great idea to opt in here, "so that you can join our exclusive notification list" (or whatever).

        Ken
        Hey Ken,

        This is similar to what I do. When someone gets to the download page I say something like...

        Thanks for your order of XYZ. Please enter your name and email address below so we can remove you from our prospect list and assign you to our VIP list.

        We ask you to opt in so we can send you a reminder email, and so you will no longer receive emails from us asking you to buy this product over and over again, and to provide you with any upgrades or assistance.

        Thank you again for your purchase.

        Now if anyone is objecting to that, then I say "fuggem". Move on to people who actually "get it".

        (How's that for tone Big Mike?)
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  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
    Banned
    I don't like to be strong-armed into any list. If I want to subscribe, I'll do it on my own. I bought a product that I had to opt-in to the list before I received the product I had already paid for.

    I immediately started getting spammed with emails trying to sell me the product I had already purchased. Now if I buy something and am forced to opt-in, I download and then immediately unsubscribe.

    If I weren't forced, I might give the list a go and see what they had to say. Now I don't bother ... just unsubscribe as soon as I get what I paid for.
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    • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
      Banned
      [DELETED]
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      • Profile picture of the author Allen Lewis
        Originally Posted by alexa_s View Post

        This is just springing an additional "term of sale" after payment and there's absolutely NO excuse for it!
        It's certainly a minor irritation, no different from being forced to watch ads on TV.

        But certainly not something to rant and rave over.

        What's the world coming to?

        Allen
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    • Profile picture of the author ezminisites
      Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

      I don't like to be strong-armed into any list. If I want to subscribe, I'll do it on my own. I bought a product that I had to opt-in to the list before I received the product I had already paid for.

      I immediately started getting spammed with emails trying to sell me the product I had already purchased. Now if I buy something and am forced to opt-in, I download and then immediately unsubscribe.

      If I weren't forced, I might give the list a go and see what they had to say. Now I don't bother ... just unsubscribe as soon as I get what I paid for.
      I am with you. I like to unsubscribe after I sign up. Oh shoot which reminds me... FreeCreditReport.com is going to zap me again if I don't cancel . OK, got to run. Thanks for the feedback though.

      Cheers!
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  • Profile picture of the author Morgan Richman
    Instead of forcing people to opt in, why don't we try to GIVE them something valuable with their purchase in exchange for opting in? I don't think we should expect people to do ANYTHING other than consume the product if they paid the money, but if we give them something ADDITIONAL, it will work wonders.

    Richman
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  • Profile picture of the author FormerWageSlave
    Forced "opt in" is a contradiction in terms. If you're being forced before you can download something you just purchased, it's not really an option now, is it? I agree with John here... unethical. I guess I would opt to charge back in that case.

    Let me decide what is less hassle and what is good service to me as the customer.
    Signature

    grrr...

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  • Profile picture of the author Asher
    I think this is somewhat of a necessary evil... After all,
    a buyers list is much more valuable than a freebie list.

    JohnMcCabe gives a good script to use in the audio/video
    before the second opt-in and it's something I would use
    to that effect.

    Also, I would do something like this after they've paid...
    • Get them to the download page
    • First thing they see is a video on autoplay
    • Talk to them through the video (using the script above)
    • Tell them they can download their product
    • Request to have them to opt-in to this "gold member" list
    • If they do - give them an added bonus?
    • If they don't, they won't get any updates
    Personally, I think this is a better system because it gives
    freedom of choice... but the problem with this is...
    1. You cannot guarantee a confirm opt-in (unless you
      can get your autoresponder to recognize a purchase)
    2. The video might not play or load fast enough to get
      your message across.
    3. Murphy's Law (anything that can go wrong, will go wrong)
    Asher
    Signature
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  • Profile picture of the author Harvey Segal
    John

    Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

    If you sell instantly downloadable products online, for the love of all that's unholy...

    STOP FORCING US TO OPT IN AND CONFIRM BEFORE YOU GIVE US THE DAMN PRODUCT WE JUST PAID YOU FOR!!!
    Can you clarify what the actual objection is.

    Is it that you need to go through an opt-in process AND that you end up on a list.


    In other words would a seamless optin as mentioned here be acceptable ?
    Originally Posted by BlueSquares View Post

    That's what I love about DLGuard. Seamless optins after purchase.

    Harvey
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    • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
      Okay, there are actually several issues here so this problem isn't really a
      cut and dried one. I can see both sides of the coin.

      I have a product that is delivered over a 12 month period because there is
      so much in it. It's not a membership in the traditional sense, as it's a one
      time purchase, but it is handled sort of like a drip feed membership site.

      Therefore, in order for the customer to get each month's material, they
      do have to opt in as the links are sent via Aweber. To send to each
      person one at a time would not only be a nightmare, but would technically
      be spam. So I have to handle it this way.

      However, I do NOT force opt in. I make it clear that to get each month
      they have to sign up to be notified. If they choose not to, then they
      obviously don't care that much about the product. So far, I have had a
      100% opt in rate making it optional, though not really. In other words,
      they do get the first month's download right away, but if they want to
      get the remaining, they must opt in. So far, no complaints in 3 years.

      Getting back to the complaint of the OP.

      On the one hand, I too do not like being blindsided. Having said that, if I
      am, I'll still opt in. If I bought the product, there was a reason for it. I
      don't buy things just for the heck of it. So I'm not going to let my
      displeasure of having to opt in WITHOUT being told first and WITHOUT
      being given the product first make me cut off my nose to spite my face.
      It just doesn't make sense.

      On the other hand, depending on what the purpose of the opt in is, that
      will determine whether or not I purchase anything else from this person
      again.

      If it's just to send me sales pitch after sales pitch and provide me with
      absolutely NO value whatsoever...not even support for the damn product
      I bought in the first place...I'll never purchase from the person again
      because it was obvious that the only reason for the opt in was to get me
      to buy more things. I am actually on one such list that I will be getting off
      of very soon.

      However, if I'm told that this entitles me to support or free updates or
      weekly tips on how to get the most out of the product, I'd be a damn
      fool to opt out...even if I was blindsided.

      It all comes down to WIIFM?

      If the opt in gives me value, fine. Yeah, I would have preferred you were
      up front about it. But I'm not going to bitch if those tips, free updates
      and support actually add to my bottom line. If anything, I'll probably email
      you and thank you for your great support.

      However, if the opt in gives me nothing, then all you've done is made
      yourself look as if all you cared about was getting my email in order to
      sell me more products.

      And for those who brought up about the buyers and freebies list, yes, I
      too move people from one to the other when they purchase my one
      product. So far, I have a 100% opt in rate doing it MY way.

      And that is what I am going to leave product creators with.

      There really is NO reason to force an opt in before download IF you are
      offering something of value for that opt in.

      And how hard is that REALLY to do?

      If it is...then maybe you shouldn't be selling products at all.

      Just my opinion.
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    • Profile picture of the author mikeyman120
      I implemented this strategy of the opt in before the download page because I believe that the "money is in the list" and it was presented to me as a strategy to build a list of buyers, the most valuable kind of list. But after being here on the warrior forum and hearing what others have to say I have chosen to do a few things to make it easier for the customer.

      The first step I take is to let them know to reconfirm their subscription later when they get a chance so they can go straight to the download page after clicking submit.

      The second thing I do is put a link below the optin that says something like - If you do not wish to opt in and recieve updates, offers and notice of any new bonuses added to the members page then click here to go directly to the download page.

      This way for people who are very against opting in they can go right through to their downloads. Makes everyone happy.

      Mike
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  • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
    I didn't really think this was even debatable, but I guess it is. Why is this so hard to get agreement on? I'm not talking about giving customers the option to opt-in during the payment process. I see that a lot and I actually do it a lot. That's just smart marketing.

    Where the line is crossed is when you take the payment and only then require a confirmed opt-in. The product you just sold and took money for is now being held hostage until the buyer jumps through additional hoops you never made a condition of the sale with the customer's understanding and acceptance. It's forced. It's completely unethical.

    Seriously, is that so hard to grasp? Is that kind of action defensible? If you think so, I'm just being honest when I say that I think that's incredibly sad.

    It's not about how easy it is to unsubscribe. That's a non sequitur. It's not relevant to the question of ethics here. It's about providing a transparent ordering process. It's about being honest with your customers before and AFTER they've paid you.

    To the gentleman who said he didn't want to sell things to me and that he worried what else I'd b*tch about, it won't be an issue, I promise. I would not buy something from someone who does not see the clearly unethical aspect of this issue. If you don't get it or are able to blur the lines that much, well I don't think I'm the only one here who would choose to avoid doing business with you. Just look at most of the other responses.

    EDIT: It also occurs to me to wonder what if the opt-in system is down or for some reason you don't get the confirmation email? Then you've paid and you still don't get the product. You paid for an instant download that wasn't.

    John
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    • Profile picture of the author Ram
      Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

      I didn't really think this was even debatable, but I guess it is. Why is this so hard to get agreement on? I'm not talking about giving customers the option to opt-in during the payment process. I see that a lot and I actually do it a lot. That's just smart marketing.

      Where the line is crossed is when you take the payment and only then require a confirmed opt-in. The product you just sold and took money for is now being held hostage until the buyer jumps through additional hoops you never made a condition of the sale with the customer's understanding and acceptance. It's forced. It's completely unethical.

      Seriously, is that so hard to grasp? Is that kind of action defensible? If you think so, I'm just being honest when I say that I think that's incredibly sad.
      The reason it's so hard to get agreement on this is because some people simply don't agree that it is in any way "unethical."

      And that's understandable. As far as I know, there is no one big book of IM ethics out there that all must bow down to. And I don't recall a vote on this particular issue.

      This isn't like theft or fraud. Whether you like it or not, it's a not a "decided" issue. Reasonable people can disagree over things like this. It doesn't make one side good and the other bad.

      To me, it's not a question of ethics. It's merely a question of personal preference. Just because this royally pisses you off -- or pisses off most of the Warrior Forum --doesn't make it "unethical." Neither you, I nor this forum make the rules and sets the universal standards of what is absolutely right or wrong. We just decide what we like or don't like.

      That said, it's easier to draw flies with honey than vinegar. So we just put a great, great, great bonus at the top of the DL page. It requires a double opt-in and is a product only available to customers. never sold. We also tell them it comes with a subscription to a VIP newsletter, only available to customers. Does remarkably well.

      Of course, you could always just password protect your DL page and require a sign up. Lots of people do that. To me, there is little difference between this and any other kind of forced opt-in. But i never see any huge blowup about it.
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  • Profile picture of the author jasonl70
    No other business in the world has such a resentment for a company that builds/maintains a customer database..

    I never hear anyone complain about giving their contact info when using anything other then Paypal for their purchases. You know - those multi-part forms you have to fill out with billing info, shipping info, etc? It takes a couple clicks and forms before you are done and completely 'checked out', but I never hear people complain that thier purchase is 'being held hostage'. I did not feel my hosting package was "being held hostage" when I purhcased it.

    I also find it odd that in threads like this, so many people don't take issue with it when it's done behind the scenes (with shopping cart software).
    Signature

    -Jason

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    • Profile picture of the author GarrieWilson
      Originally Posted by jasonl70 View Post

      I never hear anyone complain about giving their contact info when using anything other then Paypal for their purchases. You know - those multi-part forms you have to fill out with billing info, shipping info, etc? It takes a couple clicks and forms before you are done and completely 'checked out', but I never hear people complain that thier purchase is 'being held hostage'. I did not feel my hosting package was "being held hostage" when I purhcased it.
      They ask for it before you click pay. Giving you the option to not purchase if you don't want to fill everything out.

      Its really simple to add a check box and 90%+ of the people will leave it checked and opt-in.

      There are lots of ways to do this w/out forcing after payment.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Gazaway
    And using a service like DL Guard to automatically
    subscribe the customer to a list isn't FORCED? lol

    (Don't get me wrong, because I use DL Guard and
    love it btw)

    Hell, half the time the customers don't even know
    they're being added to a list.

    I can understand the OP's view, but using a
    service that subscribes them automatically is more
    of a forced opt-in than anything else IMO.

    At least you can use fake email addy's and still
    get access.

    I don't see anything wrong with it.

    Why?

    Because it's the only way (without the user
    unsubscribing) to stop receiving my prelaunch/post
    launch emails trying to sell them my product when
    they've already bought.

    I honestly think Allen should start a new forum
    specifically designed for people
    complaining/ranting and leave the main forum for
    business building ideas and tips.

    I come here for information on how to build my
    business. Not to waste my time reading posts where
    people are ranting.

    My 2 cents
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    • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
      Banned
      [DELETED]
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      • Profile picture of the author Mark-Dickenson
        I am not a fan of the forced optin either.

        I think a much better plan is to take them to your download page and give them the option to susbscribe and receive Free updates or just download without the option to receive Free updates

        I learned that from fellow warrior Tom Brite when I purchased his product and I really liked that idea. I think your customers will like it too

        -Mark
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        • Profile picture of the author jasonl70
          Originally Posted by BIG Mike View Post

          Probably because "Real" companies aren't lazy or cheap and know that they can legitimately contact their customers to maintain their business relationship with them without resorting to the "Strong Arming" of forced optin.

          Realistically, in the B&M world, no one "Forces" you to provide information that is already available as part of the transaction. They may ask for demigraphic data, such as a zip code or whatever, but don't press the issue.
          This is really just an issue of the vendor not knowing how to capture the info from the previous screen and save it to their customer list 'behind the scenes'.

          The end result is the same thing - you are on their customer list.

          I'm a programmer, so it's trivial for me to do it behind the scenes - but I have no problems with people who are less tech savvy and resort to just pasting in the form from their autoresponder.
          Signature

          -Jason

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          • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
            Banned
            [DELETED]
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            • Profile picture of the author fxmmorale
              This post set off a real crap storm eh?

              Maybe the vendor could offer the option to subscribe on the download page by offering an additional incentive for doing so along with full disclosure regarding updates, future bonuses and related offers and tips.

              In addition to the offers they can also be made aware of how the process can facilitate future correspondence by transferring them to a vip list as was mentioned earlier without continually trying to sell them the same product over and over again.

              I had this experience with a very well known (amazon best seller) marketer. Apparently they hadn't taken me off of the marketing list, even though I opted into the buyer list.

              After getting repeated high pressure offers to buy the product I already purchased, I eventually had to send him an email to back off and that I already owned the product.

              I didn't unsubscribe because once they received that email they immediately took me off and apologized for the inconvenience. What are you gonna do... it happens.

              Nando
              Signature
              The Marketing Rinnegato Cometh... stay tuned. This link leads to my Warrior blog...
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          • Profile picture of the author MichaelHiles
            I use one service for customers/prospects/general info (Aweber).

            I use a different service for customers (ConstantContact).

            My customers get manually entered into the customer system via Excel spreadsheet import.

            The Excel spreadsheet gets dumped from the accounting system.

            The accounting system is 100% manual entry. I pay an outsourced accounting admin to process the order info (among other things).

            But in all fairness, I personally don't get bent out of shape over it. I've agreed to become a client, so they already have my info in some fashion. No biggie.
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    • Profile picture of the author Asher
      Originally Posted by Jason Gazaway View Post

      I honestly think Allen should start a new forum
      specifically designed for people
      complaining/ranting and leave the main forum for
      business building ideas and tips.

      I come here for information on how to build my
      business. Not to waste my time reading posts where
      people are ranting.

      My 2 cents
      Can you learn from a rant? Or are you making too
      much money and wasting too much time to see the
      actual reason why the OP posts such a thread?

      And starting a new forum specifically designed for
      people to complain/rant? That's over at Di.. uh,
      another forum.

      Adding my 2 cents.
      is makin
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    • Profile picture of the author Michael Taylor
      Originally Posted by Jason Gazaway View Post

      I come here for information on how to build my
      business. Not to waste my time reading posts where
      people are ranting.
      Does that mean you read every single post? You could have skipped this one, you know.
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  • Profile picture of the author UndeniableSpirit
    This happens a lot. I'm not a huge fan myself. But I guess it'll sway us from buying more products we don't need :-)
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Mike,
      opting into a list before getting a product... I mean come on, there are more serious things in this world than that.
      Yep. Are you suggesting that we shouldn't be concerned about the less-than-ultimate issues? If not, I fail to see the point you're making with this comment.

      Jason,
      I prefer to avoid selling anything to a guy like Zeus. If he gets that bent out of shape for opting into a list designed to create less hassle for him, better service him as a customer, and avoid further repeat pitches, I can't imagine what kinds of other sh*t he would b*tch about?
      And a lot of people would prefer not to buy from "someone who casually discounts legitimate concerns" about proper disclosure of terms before a sale. I think both sides are looking at it through a one-way prism: What they personally prefer, rather than what's real.

      Even assuming the rest of the arguments in favor of "forcing" a subscription were not nonsense, I have objections that go well beyond the concept of permission.

      Two words: Spam filters.

      Two more: Service interruptions.

      Two more: Ad blockers.

      Here's three: Acceptable use policies.

      I've been on both ends of the problem of spam filters blocking or simply deleting product delivery emails and confirmation requests. If your system isn't set up properly, that leaves the customer without the item they purchased.

      If your list host/autoresponder is down, same thing. Plenty of that lately, eh? And all of them experience delivery problems at various ISPs from time to time, mostly resulting in emails hitting the bulk folder.

      A significant number of the sites I've seen using this tactic lately use the JS forms from Aweber. Anyone with an ad blocker enabled in Firefox (and possibly other browsers), or with JS turned off, is going to be unable to even see that form. Ooops...

      I'm not sure about Clickbank or any of the others, but Paypal will give you hell about this if it's reported to them. They consider it a violation of their acceptable use policies.

      It also happens to be frowned on by some of the autoresponder and list hosting services. Tread carefully there. I've been told by a couple of people at abuse desks that they'd block mail from any company that did this. That's less likely than the others to be a problem, but it's something to be aware of.

      Back to the original topic...

      Even among the most extreme spamfighters I know, there's virtually no objection to automatically adding someone to a list to notify them of updates and the like that are directly relevant to a product for which they actually paid money.

      So much for the "It's for your own good" argument.

      I know very few people who object to adding paying customers to a list for other types of commercial email, assuming it's not heavily used to promote unrelated items.

      I don't personally mind getting automatically added to a customer list. If it's used more than I like, or for things I don't think are appropriate to the purchase, I just unsubscribe. It only becomes a problem if the unsubscribe doesn't work, or if I'm re-added without having made another purchase. (Then it's just spam.)

      There is no law I'm aware of in the US that forbids contact with cash-paying customers, by email or any other medium, as long as it stops when they ask. Australia and much of Europe have different laws, which it would be good to look into before pushing this too far.

      The real reason most people do this the way they do is to get recorded verification data for their list host, so they can claim it was an acceptable opt-in. Those people are likely to hammer their customers with email after email, some of them on a daily basis.

      In those cases, the "opt-in" is required to provide a defense against spam complaints when they send the customers enough mail that they know the complaints will follow.

      That is deliberately deceptive. That makes those uses unethical.

      If you're going to email your customers, just freaking do it. Don't force us to pretend it was a separate, voluntary transaction. It's not. But we do expect the mail.

      For all you folks who think this is a trivial and unreasonable concern, I have a question:

      What, exactly, do you have against letting people know what they'll get before they hand over the cash?

      Why is proper up-front disclosure something you find so noxious and burdensome? Is it really that hard to put a note in the sales copy telling people they'll get [X type of] email, along with their product?

      Newsflash: With very few exceptions, I am one of the lowest maintenance customers you will ever encounter. I buy a lot, and most of the time you'll never hear from me again until the next time I buy. I don't recall ever asking for a refund for any reason other than failure to disclose conditions before the sale.

      But hey... If you don't want my money because I expect to be treated like a person, and not an anonymous wallet, fine. Let me know. There's nothing out there I can't do without or for which I can't find a suitable substitute.


      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author Jason Moffatt
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        MI think both sides are looking at it through a one-way prism: What they personally prefer, rather than what's real.
        And I think you are correct.

        I'm pretty open about the fact that I want to do business on my terms and my preference. Is that the way most businesses should run? Probably not. But mine sure does.

        And I think I'm pretty fair with my personal preferences. I don't abuse anyone or make things hard for them in the process. But I do steer the ship whatever random direction I feel like it. And if someone doesn't want to ride along the cruise line, I'm okay with that. Really.

        I am taking steps to see if we can easily change our process, but I'm pretty damn sure it's never been much of an issue at all. In fact, I tend to get more email from people asking me to email more, not less.

        I'm sure you're list feels the same way Paul.
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      • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
        Originally Posted by jasonl70 View Post

        No other business in the world has such a resentment for a company that builds/maintains a customer database..

        I never hear anyone complain about giving their contact info when using anything other then Paypal for their purchases. You know - those multi-part forms you have to fill out with billing info, shipping info, etc? It takes a couple clicks and forms before you are done and completely 'checked out', but I never hear people complain that thier purchase is 'being held hostage'. I did not feel my hosting package was "being held hostage" when I purhcased it.

        I also find it odd that in threads like this, so many people don't take issue with it when it's done behind the scenes (with shopping cart software).
        Jason, I spent a short time working with the Radio Shack chain. They require their sales clerks to ask for contact information whether you're buying a big screen TV or a battery. Back then, consistently not asking was grounds for dismissal.

        And some people did go ballistic when they offered their cash or credit card, and the clerk couldn't take it until they asked for the contact info.

        It's better now, with database look-ups, but they still ask you for the phone number before completing a purchase.

        Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

        I guess examples are required. Sigh. OK... you go to the movies. You buy tickets. You're about to walk into the theatre when a manger stops you and tells you that you must buy a box of Milk Duds before entering. You can afford the Milk Duds. You might even have planned on buying some before the show started. It still ticks you off that you're being required to buy them, right?
        John
        A better example would be if the manager stopped you at the entrance and wouldn't let you in until you filled out a contact form. No additional cash changes hands, but it's still a PITA while the ice melts in your bucket of soda and your barrel of buttered popcorn gets cold...

        Originally Posted by Jason Moffatt View Post

        In all the time I've ever sold products on the internet (and I've sold many thousands) I've NEVER had one complaint from this. NOT ONE! Sure, I recognize that silently some people are maybe a bit peeved, or maybe I got a couple refunds, but I've never heard a peep.

        I also make the transition pretty smooth and obvious.
        My problem isn't even with the forced opt-in, it's with the lack of transparency about the process. Just tell me what's going on, so there are no surprises.

        It's classic Cialdini - people will acquiesce to a lot of things, even if they don't make sense, if you just give them a reason why.
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        • Profile picture of the author Jason Moffatt
          Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

          My problem isn't even with the forced opt-in, it's with the lack of transparency about the process. Just tell me what's going on, so there are no surprises.

          It's classic Cialdini - people will acquiesce to a lot of things, even if they don't make sense, if you just give them a reason why.
          I agree with you 100% John. Which is why earlier in the thread I explained my process goes a little something like this...


          "Thanks for your order of XYZ. Please enter your name and email address below so we can remove you from our prospect ( I think we use a nicer word then prospect) list and assign you to our VIP list.

          We ask you to opt in so we can send you a reminder email, and so you will no longer receive emails from us asking you to buy this product over and over again, and to provide you with any upgrades or assistance.

          Thank you again for your purchase."



          I've never had a problem by just telling them what is going on. People understand.
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    • Profile picture of the author cooltrader
      In this case i decide me to use my 10-minute-addy...
      So i can confirm, get the stuff and bye bye.

      i didn't pay to grow up the list... :-D
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  • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
    I think it's interesting that the folks here who are defending this practice have made sure to mention that they don't do it themselves.

    Now... why do you suppose that is?

    John
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    • Profile picture of the author Mike Hill
      Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

      I think it's interesting that the folks here who are defending this practice have made sure to mention that they don't do it themselves.

      Now... why do you suppose that is?

      John
      Whats so interesting about that? What are you insinuating here anyway?

      If you've ever bought anything from me you'd see that I have it as an OPTION but I guess we can all just go around assuming things to be true without actually checking it out first...

      Mike Hill
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      • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
        Originally Posted by Mike Hill View Post

        Whats so interesting about that? What are you insinuating here anyway?

        If you've ever bought anything from me you'd see that I have it as an OPTION but I guess we can all just go around assuming things to be true without actually checking it out first...

        Mike Hill
        Mike,

        I said what you just repeated.... that some of you went out of your ways to make sure we all knew you don't do what I OP'ed about. I'm GLAD you don't do forced opt-ins, man! I think that's a CREDIT to you. But I think it's telling that you felt the need to mention (twice now) that you don't force opt-ins. Don't look now, but it appears we might actually agree that doing so is bad mojo.

        John
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        • Profile picture of the author BrandonBourne
          Repeat customers and reputation are an internet marketer's lifeblood. I don't understand the ones also that hassle their lifeblood. I hope every internet marketer reads this thread and grabs a clue how to treat others.

          The golden rule should be always in the back of a person's mind. Treat others how you want to be treated and you'll go much farther in life. I sure don't like to be forced to do something after I've already paid. OTO's also bother me and I hope they go away eventually. It would be better to put an ad on the download page than force someone through hoops that just paid you. All of this is my opinion, though.
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    • Profile picture of the author LSMarketing
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      • Profile picture of the author Marian
        Originally Posted by LSMarketing View Post

        There's no excuse for forced opt ins. An opt-in for updates etc. should ALWAYS be optional on the same page as the product download link.

        Whenever I'm forced to opt in to a list to download a product I've just purchased I opt in, download the product, then immediately unsubscribe and request a refund as I'm so annoyed.

        It's unethical and anyone who says it's not unethical, well I don't understand.
        While the first part of your post is OK and I agree with that, the middle part is not. Unsubcribe and refund???

        Marian
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      • Profile picture of the author Michael Mayo
        Originally Posted by LSMarketing View Post

        There's no excuse for forced opt ins. An opt-in for updates etc. should ALWAYS be optional on the same page as the product download link.

        Whenever I'm forced to opt in to a list to download a product I've just purchased I opt in, download the product, then immediately unsubscribe and request a refund as I'm so annoyed.

        It's unethical and anyone who says it's not unethical, well I don't understand.
        So you think that what you do is alright?

        Talk about unethical, What you're doing is called theft.

        I'm sure your first post here on the WF will carry you a long way. NOT!

        ~Michael
        PS. Oh never mind, This thread is a waste of my time.
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        • Profile picture of the author LSMarketing
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          • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
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              • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
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          • Profile picture of the author Michael Mayo
            Originally Posted by LSMarketing View Post

            I don't see it as being any more unethical than being forced to opt in.

            Look I don't klnow about you but I don't like being lied to, so I'll always request a refund if I have to enter my name and email just to download the product I paid for.
            You're right when you say you don't know me.
            But I've seen a few people with the mentality that you're radiating here in
            the forum and nothing good has ever come from them.

            Show me just one product that I can't opt out of with out first
            downloading the product.

            As BigMike said, That's Bull$h!+.

            If you've had to do that before, I'm sure it was an isolated incident.

            Also, I bet if you purchased a product that you were interested in, you
            didn't delete it after you downloaded it. I could only see you doing so if
            it required a registration key that was deactivated because of your refund
            request.

            Why the he77 am I posting to this thread again???
            I'm outta here!

            ~Michael
            PS,
            Originally Posted by LSMarketing View Post

            Yes I do, it's called forced opt in.
            A Forced opt in is having to opt in before you get the product therefore you don't have to
            download the product prior to unsubscribing and/or requesting a refund.
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            • Profile picture of the author Achilles1963
              OMG, How cool!! A 2-day long argument, I wish I had more time. Thanks Big Mike for the link to "The CAN-SPAM Act", I get spammed horribly because I advertise on Craigslist. Now I know who to complain to, and what my legal justification is.
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          • Profile picture of the author Sonja
            Originally Posted by LSMarketing View Post

            I don't see it as being any more unethical than being forced to opt in.

            Look I don't klnow about you but I don't like being lied to, so I'll always request a refund if I have to enter my name and email just to download the product I paid for.
            Wow! You openly admit you practice this? What a way to welcome yourself to the warriorforum!

            You can dress this up anyway YOU like, but this is called THEFT.
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            • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
              Simon,
              I didn't bother explaining it in detail as it just seemed some folks where in full scale rant mode and at times, you just lose the will to live explaining that not everything is as black and white as it seems in the real world of marketing.
              Bushwah.

              If it's sold as a membership site, any sane person knows they'll probably have to provide information to create an account. If it's a support system for a non-membership system, there is no reason it couldn't be made optional.

              The only difference there is the answer to the question, "Who makes the decision?"

              This is the question behind most of the biggest gripes that people have about marketers. It's behind the objection to pop-ups, spam, "stealth" continuity programs, deceptive advertising, "forced opt-ins," and probably a bunch I'm not thinking of at the moment.

              As more people try to exert more control over the decisions of their prospects and customers, resentment of any form of marketing grows, in direct proportion to the number of people exposed to those attempts and the number of times each person is exposed to them.

              It's not about a single technique or tactic, and it never has been. It's about the attitude marketers show toward their prospects through direct action.


              Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author Black Hat Cat
    Banned
    Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

    If you sell instantly downloadable products online, for the love of all that's unholy...

    STOP FORCING US TO OPT IN AND CONFIRM BEFORE YOU GIVE US THE DAMN PRODUCT WE JUST PAID YOU FOR!!!

    It's completely unethical and all it does is make me want to do a 'spite chargeback' or sign YOU up to about 50 obnoxious lists and make you wade through the confirmation emails.

    At the very least, make it totally plain ON YOUR FREAKING SALES PAGE that your price is not simply the money you're asking for, but also my contact info. Because that is a form of payment, too.

    Making me opt in to your list to get what I just paid you money for makes me instantly suspicious of whatever you just sold me, and I'm just going to unsubscribe immediately anyway. So all you've accomplished is the assurance that I'll never buy anything from you again, and you won't be able to try to sell me anything via emails.

    Good job, dumba**.

    John
    Yawn. Hyperbole much? Should they also make it clear on the sales page that your time to download is also included in the price? Your time is a form of payment too. And I'll let you in on a little secret...if you bought from them, they already have your contact info.

    It never ceases to amaze me how people get so bent out of shape over something so trivial. Not sure whether it's sad or funny.
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    • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
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      • Profile picture of the author Lance K
        Originally Posted by BIG Mike View Post

        And that is exactly why they do not need you to optin post-purchase.
        Seamless list segmentation is the best option to keep all parties happy.
        • Customer gets product without more hoops
        • Customer doesn't get "prospect" messages anymore
        • Merchant has a separate "buyer" list
        • Merchant doesn't have annoyed clients due to hostage goods
        The result is the same, but you eliminate the steps that cause friction.
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        • Profile picture of the author Jason Moffatt
          Originally Posted by Lance K View Post

          Seamless list segmentation is the best option to keep all parties happy.
          • Customer gets product without more hoops
          • Customer doesn't get "prospect" messages anymore
          • Merchant has a separate "buyer" list
          • Merchant doesn't have annoyed clients due to hostage goods
          The result is the same, but you eliminate the steps that cause friction.
          Lance, or Big Mike, or anyone else,

          Can this be done with using "Aweber" and "Single Opt In"?

          My problem has always been that when you use the automated function in aweber to remove a person from one list when they sign up to another, it will often trigger Aweber to send out a confirmation email (or Double Opt In) if some sort of script or service is doing the job.

          It seems fine with double opt in, but that is not how my set up is structured. Hence why I do it the ghetto way.

          The only other option I see is to manually input them into iContact like a poster above does, and delete them from original prospect list. That's a option as well, but requires man hours.

          In all the time I've ever sold products on the internet (and I've sold many thousands) I've NEVER had one complaint from this. NOT ONE! Sure, I recognize that silently some people are maybe a bit peeved, or maybe I got a couple refunds, but I've never heard a peep.

          I also make the transition pretty smooth and obvious.

          But here's the truth of the matter...

          If you have customers that are bitching about this kind of stuff, you are selling to the wrong people. Seriously. I'd really consider a job relocation, a new niche , or just a freaking permanent vacation if I had to spend my day listening to such trivial complaints.

          I want to sell to people who are EAGER to put in their name, not the ones that will run to a forum to tell everyone how my business model is bad. Pretty simple equation in my book.
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          • Profile picture of the author MichaelHiles
            Originally Posted by Jason Moffatt View Post

            ...

            The only other option I see is to manually input them into iContact like a poster above does, and delete them from original prospect list. That's a option as well, but requires man hours.

            ...

            The only time-consuming process is the accounting entry ****, and you've gotta do that anyway (or at least you've got to be paying someone to do it).

            It's actually pretty instantaneous to import the spreadsheet. It's instantaneous to generate the spreadsheet from my accounting system by dumping customer data from a date range.

            Unless you don't actually track your customers and accounting in a system... and that's a much different problem ("Ummm yeah we're here from the IRS...")
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        • Profile picture of the author Pnigro
          Originally Posted by Lance K View Post

          Seamless list segmentation is the best option to keep all parties happy.
          • Customer gets product without more hoops
          • Customer doesn't get "prospect" messages anymore
          • Merchant has a separate "buyer" list
          • Merchant doesn't have annoyed clients due to hostage goods
          The result is the same, but you eliminate the steps that cause friction.
          How do you do this with Clickbank + Aweber?
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    • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
      Originally Posted by Black Hat Cat View Post

      Yawn. Hyperbole much? Should they also make it clear on the sales page that your time to download is also included in the price? Your time is a form of payment too. And I'll let you in on a little secret...if you bought from them, they already have your contact info.

      It never ceases to amaze me how people get so bent out of shape over something so trivial. Not sure whether it's sad or funny.
      LOL User name "Black Hat Cat" has this to say? Color me shockingly unsurprised.

      Having to repeat this seminal point is really getting boring, but... once more into the breach, dear friends!

      I don't care that the seller has my contact info through the payment process. I don't care if they send me the occasional email, even if it's to try to get me to buy something else they sell.

      The ONLY part of this I have a beef with is forcing me to opt in and confirm - PAY ATTENTION TO THIS PART - after I've paid and before I've downloaded... as a condition of downloading what I just paid for, AND without informing me on the sales page.

      I guess examples are required. Sigh. OK... you go to the movies. You buy tickets. You're about to walk into the theatre when a manger stops you and tells you that you must buy a box of Milk Duds before entering. You can afford the Milk Duds. You might even have planned on buying some before the show started. It still ticks you off that you're being required to buy them, right?

      If anyone here claims this would not at least mildly upset them, they're lying. And we all know it. So let's stop with the silly, illogical counter-arguments and calling the OP hyperbole, ok? Seriously.

      John
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  • Profile picture of the author jasonl70
    jason - there's several ways around this. Who do you use for processing your payments?
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    -Jason

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    • Profile picture of the author Jason Moffatt
      Originally Posted by jasonl70 View Post

      jason - there's several ways around this. Who do you use for processing your payments?
      Who don't i use?

      Let's take something most are familiar with. Clickbank.

      Was just responding to your pm, but figured it would be best for everyone to see. Thanks.
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  • Profile picture of the author Scott Ames
    Was it me? No.. I doubt it. But I do force people to opt-in to one product because a year of email daily IS the product. Of course they know that going in.

    Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

    If you sell instantly downloadable products online, for the love of all that's unholy...

    STOP FORCING US TO OPT IN AND CONFIRM BEFORE YOU GIVE US THE DAMN PRODUCT WE JUST PAID YOU FOR!!!

    It's completely unethical and all it does is make me want to do a 'spite chargeback' or sign YOU up to about 50 obnoxious lists and make you wade through the confirmation emails.

    At the very least, make it totally plain ON YOUR FREAKING SALES PAGE that your price is not simply the money you're asking for, but also my contact info. Because that is a form of payment, too.

    Making me opt in to your list to get what I just paid you money for makes me instantly suspicious of whatever you just sold me, and I'm just going to unsubscribe immediately anyway. So all you've accomplished is the assurance that I'll never buy anything from you again, and you won't be able to try to sell me anything via emails.

    Good job, dumba**.

    John
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  • Profile picture of the author peetred
    LOL. I enjoyed this post.. lovely rant. I've never experienced it, but It's still funny and I can completely understand.
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  • Profile picture of the author Brad Gile
    Since my business has to do with working with internet marketers, I've noticed this has became a very big problem.

    A while back I saw threads just like this with people saying "if you make me opt-in, I'll refund you in a second".

    Well, at that point, I thought it was a little discouraging. I wanted to build a buyers lists but I didn't want to deal with refunders. So, I decided to add the opt-in as an option on my thank you pages.

    I figured I would give the customer the option. The first option is you can join our list and get potential updates to the product if there's any in the future.

    Note: When they opted in, it's a single opt-in, you're taken straight to the download page after inputing your info.

    Or they could just click the link below the opt-in form that says "no, I rather just download my product".

    I figured by giving them the option to do this I was only going to get about 50% of my customers to opt-in. But to my surprise, about 99% go ahead and opt-in and I've never had a complaint.

    Just my tip.
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  • Profile picture of the author Teriss
    I know what you mean when you see even 3-4 optin's for a free report? That drives me nuts...so I quit after the 2nd optin, I mean how many times do u have to confirm you want the darn thing? I know one of these so called "guru's" has you going around in circles -- what he doesn't realize is that he is driving people away. Urruugggh....
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  • Profile picture of the author SteveJohnson
    I've never had a problem by just telling them what is going on. People understand.
    Which was the whole point, I think. And I would gladly fill in your box.

    I wouldn't gladly fill in a box that I was forced to fill in, just to get the product. Mainly because I have such an aversion to authority that I chafe against being forced to do anything.

    That said, I don't think my panties would be in a big enough wad to make a gigantic deal out of it.

    In fact, I'm sure I remember having to do that once or twice to download a product. It must have bothered me greatly because for the life of me, I can't remember whose or what product it was...but I know it bothered me. It did.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Romaine
      Strangely enough I received a complaint from a buying customer who raised a support request over at Clickbank for this very issue. To be honest, up until then Id never really given it any thought, but when this email came in, I got a bit worried and found myself rummaging through Clickbanks TOS.

      It ended up going no-where and as far as I can tell, Im within Clickbanks TOS doing this - but would appreciate any input or thoughts from others here on this.

      Email below...(actually Ill include the whole series of emails for arguments sake)

      CUSTOMER: CREATED: 2009-07-06 07:29:53 AM
      "Hi, I was wondering if it is against your terms of service if a vendor Requires the purchaser to opt-in to their email system before allowing me to download what I purchased? This vendor is doing this and I was not happy about it. Thanks for your help."

      My reply...

      The optin upon download is merely to allow me to follow up on your purchase to seek feedback and advice as to what you thought of the book. Obviously, If this is in breach of any terms of service, or guidelines with clickbank, I would be more than happy to make the necessary changes to ensure that I work within those guidelines. I have searched within the clickbank site for further information on this, but dont see anything. Perhaps someone could point me in the right direction?

      Another follow up reply....

      VENDOR: COMMENTED: 2009-07-06 08:32:06 AM
      As far as I can tell I am within those guidelines as per the "Vendor and Products Requirements Policy" You will create and be responsible and liable for: (1) a "Pitch Page" which accurately and clearly describes such Product; and (2) a "Thank You" page through which Purchasers will immediately receive the Product or through which they will receive clearly and accurate instructions on how and when they will receive the Product.
      Again, if there are any issues, I would be more than glad to have them corrected or actioned as necessary.


      No response from customer - TICKET CLOSED.
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      • Profile picture of the author jasonl70
        Originally Posted by ramone_johnny View Post

        Strangely enough I received a complaint from a buying customer who raised a support request over at Clickbank for this very issue. To be honest, up until then Id never really given it any thought, but when this email came in, I got a bit worried and found myself rummaging through Clickbanks TOS.

        It ended up going no-where and as far as I can tell, Im within Clickbanks TOS doing this - but would appreciate any input or thoughts from others here on this.

        Email below...

        CUSTOMER: CREATED: 2009-07-06 07:29:53 AM
        "Hi, I was wondering if it is against your terms of service if a vendor Requires the purchaser to opt-in to their email system before allowing me to download what I purchased? This vendor is doing this and I was not happy about it. Thanks for your help."
        As you know, CB checked your entire sales process before approving it, often requiring little changes here and there to various pages - so that would tell me that they don't take issue with it.
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    • Profile picture of the author Hesaidblissfully
      I think whether you feel it's ethical or not, the point about technical issues with email filters, etc. keeping you from getting the product you purchased are good enough reason to make the opt-in optional. They can choose to either opt-in and download the product, or they can just download and be on their way.

      Also, I think people are a little more psychologically invested in seeing your newsletters when they've given you their contact info by choice, based on the reasons you gave them, versus doing it because they had no choice.
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  • Profile picture of the author MSGeek
    I also think that most of the thread is based on misunderstanding between sides.

    The original complaint was that you pay, payment is processed, and you see another stupid form to fill to get to something, that you just paid for. And that certainly does not help to the seller either.

    I don't see Zeus objecting to less invasive ways. Have a script on your Thank You page that will send his information to AWeber. After that the customer can decide to opt-in or not. Or use mailing list company that does not require opt-in for such cases, just leave unsubscribe option (of course, you are running into the risk of spam complaints here, not nice).

    So, why the heated discussion? Both sides are arguing against WHAT THEY THINK the other side says, not what it really says.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Romaine
      Originally Posted by MSGeek View Post

      ....you see another stupid form to fill
      Well gee thats helpful.

      Its not a stupid form - its there for good reason.
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      • Profile picture of the author Julian Lockhart
        I think the culprit is the email services.

        We should be able to validate and add a person to a list when they place the order.

        Double opt in is not always necessary. Especially if someone whips out their wallet.
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      • Profile picture of the author MSGeek
        Originally Posted by ramone_johnny View Post

        Well gee thats helpful.
        Its not a stupid form - its there for good reason.
        It feels like many people arguing against Zeus react like Google - on keyword, instead of reading what he says.

        What I am trying to say (as well as few other members here), is that opt-in is ok, but it has to be _opt_-in, not force-in, once you paid for the product, or the customer should get on that list automatically based on purchase form (maybe with double opt-in in the mail), instead of a separate form blocking his way after he already paid for the product. Would you disagree with that?
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  • Profile picture of the author MustafaKamal
    IMO, I think as long as these sellers gets 1 out of 10 email addresses due to hard-selling, it's more than worth it to be 'unethical'.
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  • Not that anymore needs to be said, but I think I am with Zeus on this. Here is why.

    Three times last week I bought a product where I had to confirm my subscription to get to the download page. Two out of three never sent me the confirmation. I had to wait over 24 hours for one of the products, send screenshots of my transactions, and practically beg the guy to give me the download page.

    Here I am a week later, and I am still ticked off about it. Why? I had set aside reading time for those two products, expecting to have them...but they didnt come, and it screwed up my schedule.

    It made me so mad in fact, that I went through my inbox and unsubscribed from every list on the first page of my email. Their antics made me opt out of other marketers' lists.
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
    Product A: Costs $7 > Instant download > Click "Purchase Now" button > leave sales page > receive download

    Product B: Costs $7 > Instant download > Click "Purchase Now" button > leave sales page > Go to OTO page > choose option > receive download

    Product C: Costs $7 > Instant download > Click "Purchase Now" button > leave sales page > must give your name and e-mail > no other option > receive download

    I'll take Product A or B every time, BUT the problem is how would I know I'm not getting Product C until it's too late?

    The other point is that for every step you add to the process, you are adding additional steps that can go wrong (keeping in mind that we tend to be more comfortable purchasing online than our customers).

    One more thing, come on guys. Some of you are getting WAY too personal with the needless name calling. We can discuss the bst way to market online, but we don't need to call each other stupid, etc.

    All the best,
    Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
    It may be a good idea to put someone on a list, but let's not forget that opt-in implies an option.

    If I just gave you money, and you tell me only now that I can't actually download the product until I give you my email address - I do not have an option. I am being forced to give you my email address, or you will not give me the product. A product that I have already paid to receive.

    That's blackmail, pure and simple. If I can choose whether to opt-in or not, great. If you told me I had to opt-in to get the product, great. But when you wait until AFTER you have my money to say "oh, by the way, give me your email address or you don't get squat" - that's simply not acceptable.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lyn Woodring
    Okay I'm a newbie on some...a lot of this stuff and my question maybe a little off target but since this thread deals at least partially with being on 'lists' I do have a concern.
    That concern is being on someone's list who has emailed me with this 'great free offer', all I need to do is opt-in to another list.
    I understand the reasoning behind this but after so many such offers, many of them for the same report or seminair that if I'm not careful I have several of the same reports and on a dozen lists whose names I can't now associate with whatever freebie I recieved.
    I just wonder why if its a PDF the list signup and affilate link can't be contained inside the report if I find it intersting or the seminair link if the information is something I need.
    As far as forced opt-ins after purchasing what I'm really interested in recieving the product and support. Not a lot more. At least give me space to try your product first.
    Admittedly some of this is my fault...trying to figure this out in bits and pieces but like this summer has been I've been slowed with health issues and using 'rent' money is not a good plan either.
    I have to take things slow.
    -Lyn
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  • Profile picture of the author Affiliit
    It's annoying as hell, but I understand why they do it. For someone to do this with affiliate marketing it shows they do not respect there customers.
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  • Profile picture of the author melanied
    I'm with you - it's one of my pet peeves!
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  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    Having read through the thread, I think part of the problem is the words which are used on the thank you page.

    It is one thing to have an opt-in box on your thank you page, but what you write is something completely different.

    If I buy from someone and there is a choice to sign up or not, then I would normally sign-up. If I don't like what they send I can unsubscribe.

    However, when I come to a download page which has a message, sign up or you don't get your product, that is totally different. I have paid for the product, and what happens if the confirmation gets lost, or like one situation when I was already on the list and couldn't sign up or get the product.

    If you test you will find the majority of people have no problems signing up when given that option.

    But, I should imagine those who use blackmail (as CDarklock) said are going to get people signing up to get their products and then unsubscribing immediately.

    Some people don't have it working, so they demand you sign up, the download page is then given before the confirmation is received. Why would I or anyone else confirm, unless it is something being delivered by email?

    Forcing someone to sign up can also cause problems with your paypal account.

    I have a problem with people who think because I have bought 1 product from them they can use my paypal addy to send me all sorts of junk. I have an email addy which is used for nothing other than paypal.
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  • Profile picture of the author Folusho Orokunle
    I understand the position of Zeus, Big Mike , and others. But to be honest, I've been making my customers opt in for at least the past five years.

    And over 7,000 customers later, I have NEVER had someone complain about this.

    I didn't know people saw this as being a problem.

    The only thing I do differently is that I set up the process as single opt in and redirect the person directly to the product after they opt in.

    I don't sell a lot on the warrior forum though, so maybe this is the problem.

    Most people outside of IM think that you're going to ship them something in the mail anyway, even if you make them opt in. So after they opt in I take them to the landing page for the product and I send them an email with the link to the product in it.

    Of course there are better ways to do this, but I prefer doing things in a way that if I have a problem, and my tech guy is on vacation, I'll know how to take care of it.
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    • Profile picture of the author Martin Luxton
      Two things to add.

      1. Trends

      In the rebuttal thread,

      http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...er-opting.html

      Frank Donovan posted this

      I'm not talking about the professional whiners or the "entitlement mindset" crowd, but where there's a pattern of complaint (which presumably prompted your OP) surely the smart reaction would be to examine if there's any way your own practices could be improved.
      In the last couple of years there have been several threads on this topic and the general consensus was to pooh pooh any complaints and dismiss the people complaining as poor marketers.

      Now the pendulum has swung. Whether it is the recession or people becoming more cynical/suspicious, this has become a big issue and you ignore it at your peril.

      2. Disclosure.

      If you're going to do this, make sure you block all Australian residents from buying your product. The Australian authorities are really hot on penalising lack of upfront disclosure. The FTC is a pussycat compared to them. The argument that you are just making things easier for your customers won't hold water.

      Martin
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      • Profile picture of the author Ray Erdmann
        My $0.02 worth:

        1) Aren't your customer's being sent to a 'squeeze page' first, in order to obtain/capture their emails..if so, why the 2nd opt-in a 2nd time on the 'download page'

        I mean, in the lucky event someone goes from the squeeze page all the way to the final 'purchase page' and actually moves forward w/buying said product/service, isn't there an easy way to move that email from the initial 'prospect list' they were added to at the start of the process to a "VIP" or "Just Purchased XYZ product list" seamlessly, thus bypassing any unnecessary 2nd opt-in?

        2) I'm w/those who agree that if I've gone through the purchase process, I WANT to get said product/service NOW...NOT AFTER I have to opt-in to a mailing list AGAIN, especially after I've already paid and my CC has been billed the "X" amount of dollars required to complete the purchase.


        I will say that even though it's ben awhile since I've purchased anything 'IM' related, the last time I did, there wasn't a need to opt-in a 2nd time. Guess times are a changing pretty fast....
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  • Profile picture of the author kennethtang
    Hehehe...

    If I bought a ticket and is about to enter the cinema and you stop me, saying that I MUST fill in a contact form, I gonna punch you in the nose, period (and kick you in the nuts, or vice-versa). But that's just me.

    As for being on a customer list, here's a question I'm thinking about: I bought ABC product from you, and you automatically added me to your "customer list", what are you ALLOWED to send me, in addition to the download (if, in fact, it is a downloadble product).

    If nothing else is mentioned about OTHER offers/info that MAY be sent to me, I will allow you to:

    - send me updates on the product itself
    - send me news about problems or issues with the product and/or its use
    - anything else related to the product
    - (OK, I'll be generous) send me info about other related products from YOUR company

    I will not, however, allow you to:

    - send me info about new (free/or paid) products from your 10th uncle from your wife's father's uncle's side

    - send me info about your "good friend" who came up with a killer must-have-sure-to-make-money-thingamajig

    - that 100k-in-20-seconds-product that the Martian Direct Internet Marketing Emperor-Pope is about to launch in 7 days.

    - anything else not related to the purchase

    As Paul Myers said: full-disclosure upfront, mi amigo, full disclosure upfront (Being human, sometimes I overlook that myself. My bad. I promise I will do my best to remember in the future)

    But that's just me (and I don't want to kick you in the nuts)

    Kenneth
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  • Wow you guys get mighty upset for trivial stuff. So what if you punch in your email address upon buying a product? it's not a big deal, come on!

    I've been placing forced opt-in forms on my Thank You pages for like ever, and never anyone complained. You just say something like: "Punch in your email address so I can send you any updated version of this product I might come up with in the future". By using that line, over 90% of my customers opt in and no one complained.
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    • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
      Originally Posted by Anonymous Affiliate View Post

      Wow you guys get mighty upset for trivial stuff. So what if you punch in your email address upon buying a product? it's not a big deal, come on!

      I've been placing forced opt-in forms on my Thank You pages for like ever, and never anyone complained. You just say something like: "Punch in your email address so I can send you any updated version of this product I might come up with in the future". By using that line, over 90% of my customers opt in and no one complained.
      The issue is forced opt-in that is not divulged on the sales page. So someone pays you for your product, but then you withhold delivery of that product until they not only opt in to your list, but then confirm that opt-in. You give them no option to skip it and go right to the download page. Again, keep in mind that the sales page says nothing about being required to opt in and confirm as a condition of the sale.

      So, do you still think this is ok? If so, I'll add you to my growing list of unethical sellers to avoid at all costs. I'm going to send out the list to all of my subscribers in a week or so.

      That last bit was a joke... maybe.

      John
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  • Profile picture of the author JasonParker
    I don't think it's THE END OF THE WORLD or anything...

    There are smoother ways of capturing the opt-in of buyers though. The Can Spam Act says you can contact your customers, so you definitely want to take advantage of that.
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  • Profile picture of the author Andy
    My 2 bits - chalk the 200%+ increase to inflation -

    IMO forced optins are ridiculous and not necessary. I've never connnected marketing with forced anything.

    I put my support and update optins on the download page. I see nothing wrong with offering the optin before the download page but there should be a link to access the product without optin in.

    Jeremy brings up a good point about the pain of offering support without someone being on a list and I partly agree. I started including a ticket support system link to all my downloads. So far so good.

    One option I see is making support and updates contingent on opting in to a list - no optin no list. It's not much of a choice for the customer but it IS a choice.

    And Big Mike is correct about CAN-SPAM (don'tcha just LOVE the implication of that acronym?) - once a product is sold - a relationship is established and the merchant has every right to email the customer.

    I'm not so sure about this but I believe either party has the right to terminate said relationship also. Please keep in mind - I am not a member of any BAR - I am not trained as a lawyer so I cannot and will not offer anything that should be considerd "legal" advice in any shape form or manner - even if I CAN outword some legal beagles :-)

    The whole crux of this matter seems to lie in unethical and possibly illegal behaviour by some who call themselves marketers.

    If everyone behaved in an above-board manner. If my kids could sign up for a newsletter without being snail mailed a betting guide. (Yes, it HAS happened and no, I have NO idea what he signed up for or what site he was on but he was about 11 at the time and I could find no evidence he visited any "bad" sites.) - maybe marketers could win back a good name, but I'm not holding my breath.

    So those of us who would like to present a good name to the public need to be far above board. We need to go overboard and stay squeeky clean in our dealings.

    All that John originally asked was to stop blindsiding him and others with forced optins after the sale. Maybe some took exception to how he put it. Welcome to the real world with real customers. I've dealt with many who get irate over much less and have absolutely nothing to stand on. I've even become irate over my own misunderstanding of certain situations. It happens.

    The fact is we all NEED irate customers. We NEED people who are classic PITAs becuase those are the ones who will make no bones about what's wrong with our processes, our products and our services. Otherwise the Emperor is strutting around with no clothes.

    Okay. Jumping off the soapbox now.

    God bless,

    Andy
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  • Profile picture of the author wisecrone333
    I know I get really annoyed with people who continue to sell me the same product I have already purchased, downloaded and done with. I am not up on techie stuff so didn't understand why sellers just couldn't automatically transfer me from one list (pre-buy) to another one (bought) - from a buyers perspective I think the idea of putting an optin form underneath the download link - for people who want updates etc is a good idea and I would prefer that if there was a way that my purchase automatically took me off of their presell list.

    From reading all of these posts my head is swimming and I am not sure if the above is possible, but would that be a compromise?

    My 2c
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  • Profile picture of the author Daniel Molano
    I thought it was just me thinking about this...

    What I do is send an automated opt-in confirmation e-mail to the VIP list, entirely optional. It's sent immediately after purchase through the API key.

    No one has to fill in a damn thing after the purchase.

    First thing I say in the e-mail is that subscribing will provide them with free life time updates, plus some other niche related stuff.

    Those opt-ins have 100% conversion and are entirely optional.

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  • Profile picture of the author DougBarger
    It's good to see many of the software business owners speaking out about this issue.

    Finally, we may no longer have to "register" our software to use them
    after purchase.

    But that's different. Right? LOL. ;-)

    Actually, from the consumer perspective, I don't mind opting in or registering
    and like Jason Parker said,
    although there's more seamless ways of registering customers, it's
    senseless to not keep vip's on a separate list.

    Definitely not the end of the world either way.
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  • Profile picture of the author Scott Myers
    Forgive me if this was said already, I haven't read all the posts on this thread.

    What has worked for me is to allow the product and any/all bonuses to be downloaded immediately after purchase on the download page.

    I then explain on the site that it is a password protected book (to guard against any theft) and that the customer must opt-in to receive the password. This in my view is no different than having to enter a security code to unlock software.

    I have been doing this for sometime now (non IM niche) and have yet to receive even one complaint about using a second opt-in in this manner.

    And for Zeus66:
    Business is conducted in all sorts of ways. To both benefit the customer and the company.
    If the product is good and the company successful, than you should look at that company's sales process. The entire process! Not just what you agree with.

    You'll most likely find that your opinions are in the vast minority and that doing business in a way that pleases only you leaves countless $$$'s on the table.

    Never assume that you (or any individual) speak for the majority!

    I also agree with Jason Moffatt on this one.

    If you complain about something so petty, I'm going to remove from my list lightning fast to make sure I NEVER have to listen to " 'ur bichin' " again.
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    • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
      Banned
      Originally Posted by ScottyDog View Post

      I also agree with Jason Moffatt on this one. If you complain about something so petty, I'm going to remove from my list lightning fast to make sure I NEVER have to listen to " 'ur bichin' " again.

      You act like you're doing the customer a favor .... sorry, but the customer is doing you a favor by purchasing your product. If the customer does not like to be forced to do something in order to receive his already purchased product and you still insist on forcing them to get on your list so you can blast him with more offers, then ... now get this

      The Customer Will Remove Himself From Your Crappy List Lightning Fast to Make Sure THEY Never Have to be Forced into Something They Do Not Want to Do to Get Something They Paid For Again .... so you arrogant vendors who think a bitchin customer is a worthless customer ... you're right ... you won't have to deal with us again.

      In my book, if a customer is "bitchin" ... you are doing something wrong.
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  • Profile picture of the author lakshaybehl
    Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

    If you sell instantly downloadable products online, for the love of all that's unholy...

    STOP FORCING US TO OPT IN AND CONFIRM BEFORE YOU GIVE US THE DAMN PRODUCT WE JUST PAID YOU FOR!!!
    Especially when all you need to do is make a couple of changes and we'll automatically be on your Aweber email list as soon as we buy from you.

    Spot on, friend.
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  • Profile picture of the author SumikoW
    It's all about the SPAM rules, until then it didn't matter.
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  • Profile picture of the author babushka99
    Banned
    If you tried downloading a trial copy of Kaspersky antivirus, you would be surprised to see a check mark box (duly checked) for opt-in to their marketing list and then it has a little asterisk to it - its "mandatory" - can you believe!

    If you have to download trial software, you automatically have to agree getting into the opt-in list and who the heck designs a form with a check mark option and then if you try to tick it off, it won't let you download.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Nathan,
      Where is the best place to include the up-front disclosure you describe above in light of the following:

      "Many people stop reading once they believe they understand the offer and have decided to buy."
      Depends on the offer. When there's a subscription involved, my solution has usually been to make the opt-in real, in the sense that they can get the product with or without signing up for anything.

      If you're going to make it part of the transaction, tell them about it in close proximity to, or as part of, the product description and as part of the call to action and offer summary.

      I've been surprised a few times by stuff after the sale that I didn't remember seeing in the copy. When that happens, I go back and re-read it. If it's there, and it's reasonably clear, I tend to think better of the seller for having been up front. If it's not, and it's material to the purchase, I decide what I want to do about it.

      There's no absolute protection against people not reading. The best you can do is to be clear and mention things in the right places.

      I used to get a fair number of people ordering digital books and not noticing wording like "ebook," "digital manual," "PDF format," or "This is not a physical product. It's a digital book, which you can download and start reading immediately after ordering."

      I was in the habit back then of keeping a copy of sales letters with everything in black and white except those phrases, highlighted in bold red letters. If someone asked politely, I explained and worked out whatever made them happy. If they got nasty, I refunded them and politely pointed them to that page.

      One guy went nuts on me after seeing that page. Then he went nuts on me again later, when his bank told him he couldn't do a chargeback on me because the money had already been refunded. Paraphrased, from memory and with the hostile parts left out:

      Him: "Why didn't you tell me you were giving me my money back? I wasted all that time and looked foolish!"

      Me: "I did, sir. In the same email that pointed you to the page with all the red ink. You read enough of that message to find the page and rant about it. Remember?"

      The email was 2 short paragraphs. The first paragraph was, "I've sent you a refund for this order."

      There is no defense against people not reading, except to do the right thing and know they can't hurt you much because of that.

      Still, making the form optional is the best bet. With any relevant incentive at all, you'll see typically over 90% of people signing up.

      Jason,

      Yeah. I run mine the way I want, too. And it's not at all the way most people run theirs. One thing I try to always do is leave the other person the choice. The only deliberate exception is when I choose to chase someone out, by blocking them or unsubscribing them myself.
      I am taking steps to see if we can easily change our process, but I'm pretty damn sure it's never been much of an issue at all. In fact, I tend to get more email from people asking me to email more, not less.
      The people who want you to mail less are usually going to unsubscribe. Some will put in filters to delete or auto-file the emails. It's unlikely that most people who dislike the practice would actually say anything about it.

      Here's an estimate, which anyone who's got the right kind of tracking system can check for themselves: Approximately 5% of the people who sign up through a form like that who were not already subscribed to one of your lists will unsubscribe within 24 hours. 6-10% will unsubscribe within the first 3 emails.


      Paul
      Signature
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      Stop by Paul's Pub - my little hangout on Facebook.

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  • Profile picture of the author Kris Turner
    Based on what I've read in this thread, I'd like to ask...

    If you sell a product on Clickbank and you have a mailing list with AWeber, what's the best way to remove a prospect from one list and add them to a customer list after purchase?

    Can it be made "seamless" with DLGuard? If not, are there any other options out there that *do* make it seamless?
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  • Profile picture of the author GainRealWealth
    LOL, what a can of worms we have opened today!

    I personally like Frank Haywood's method:

    Put the opt-in on the download page with the following;

    "To receive updates and support, register your product below" (or something similar) and have that list only go to an autoresponder that deals with customers who have bought from you. It's not offensive and people already have a "register this product" mentality from buying appliances and digital gadgets.

    I'll stick to that instead of pre-download captures
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  • Profile picture of the author tommygunn
    Makes me wonder if people despised me for having them enter a email address as their username that they would use to login to the application they just purchased. It wasnt the intention to spam them later, just so I know who belonged to what login.
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  • Profile picture of the author Nat Jackson
    Yes, i think this is bad practice. I paid for the product, now let me just have it, i don't want to sign up to your list, unless it's worthwhile...Besides isn't this type of thing banned if you use paypal..or rather it could get you into hot water with paypal if found out...like it did with some of the $7 script users?

    Why not use a O.T.O, after payment:

    I'll give you x amount of goodies for FREE if you sign up to our list today or a discount on your next order....or of course sign up for future updates, product announcements....

    But it would have to be something good on offer!
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  • Profile picture of the author Midas3 Consulting
    Amazed at how bent out of shape somebody can get because they have to enter their email address before downloading a product.

    You trusted the person enough to hand of your $$$ but not with your e-mail which could be any old throw away e-mail.

    Was it the 2.1 seconds it took or the huge invasion of privacy that bothers you ?

    Man, it's just convience, now the vendor can send you e-emails helping you with the product, welcoming you to the service etc.

    You're only happy if in advance of paying there's a big message saying "After payment you will need to enter your e-mail address" ... ?

    It's also a great way to "un-register" the user from a prospect list they may have subscribed to on your site, now they don't get sent more content about buying the product.

    I wish I had the time to get so agitated about an issue which takes about 2 seconds, once everyblue moon.
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    • Profile picture of the author Nat Jackson
      Originally Posted by SimonHarrison View Post

      Amazed at how bent out of shape somebody can get because they have to enter their email address before downloading a product.

      You trusted the person enough to hand of your $$$ but not with your e-mail which could be any old throw away e-mail.

      Was it the 2.1 seconds it took or the huge invasion of privacy that bothers you ?

      Man, it's just convience, now the vendor can send you e-emails helping you with the product, welcoming you to the service etc.

      You're only happy if in advance of paying there's a big message saying "After payment you will need to enter your e-mail address" ... ?

      I wish I had the time to get so agitated about an issue on this scale.
      Thre above is total CRAP! We trusted them enough to hand over our dollars, but we dont want to enter any details to get our damn product do we?

      What if next time you fancied hiring a video out, i take your dollars but before i give you the film show you a commercial for vagisil...

      Nobody's getting agitated about it, someone has just decided to tell everyone what they dont like about a certain marketing tactic....it sounds like you use this ploy a lot in your marketing endevours....

      A choice is all we would like to see...CHOICES...CHOICES....CHOICES...

      I choose not to enter my email and download the product.....or...

      i choose to enter my email and download the product so i can be sent further information....

      Aint nothin wrong with that....

      P.S : When you said: "I wish I had the time to get so agitated about an issue on this scale".....

      YOU JUST DID....
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      • Profile picture of the author Midas3 Consulting
        Originally Posted by Nat Jackson View Post

        Thre above is total CRAP!

        it sounds like you use this ploy a lot in your marketing endevours....

        A choice is all we would like to see...CHOICES...CHOICES....CHOICES...
        As long as your not getting agitated...

        [
        P.S : When you said: "I wish I had the time to get so agitated about an issue on this scale".....

        YOU JUST DID....


        My ears...

        Laters..
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      • Profile picture of the author WendellC
        I believe I understand John's (Zeus66) view. As someone posted earlier, it has a lot to do with transparency and the fact that you aren't given access to the product you paid for unless you give up your email address. It's like the product is being held hostage.

        From the marketer's perspective, I also understand that there are times when you need to have the email address to provide support and updates. And yes, if people don't like getting marketing offer emails from you then it's easy to unsubscribe.

        However, I don't think that the need for providing updates or the ease of unsubscribing is quite the point. I think the issue is: Is the way in which you get the email address helping to build trust with your customers or is it potentially diminishing trust with your customers?

        After all, we're not trying to be list-builders -- we're trying to be relationship-builders and if the marketer is doing something in a manner that doesn't build that relationship then it's not an effective long-term program for success.

        So is it really that hard to put a few words to the effect: "For free product updates and support, please sign up below." I bet you'd get close to 100% opt in on that and it's totally upfront and honest.

        Just my thoughts.

        Wendell
        Signature

        List your no opt-in product here for free: No Opt In Required

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        • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
          Originally Posted by WendellC View Post

          I believe I understand John's (Zeus66) view. As someone posted earlier, it has a lot to do with transparency and the fact that you aren't given access to the product you paid for unless you give up your email address. It's like the product is being held hostage.

          From the marketer's perspective, I also understand that there are times when you need to have the email address to provide support and updates. And yes, if people don't like getting marketing offer emails from you then it's easy to unsubscribe.

          However, I don't think that the need for providing updates or the ease of unsubscribing is quite the point. I think the issue is: Is the way in which you get the email address helping to build trust with your customers or is it potentially diminishing trust with your customers?

          After all, we're not trying to be list-builders -- we're trying to be relationship-builders and if the marketer is doing something in a manner that doesn't build that relationship then it's not an effective long-term program for success.

          So is it really that hard to put a few words to the effect: "For free product updates and support, please sign up below." I bet you'd get close to 100% opt in on that and it's totally upfront and honest.

          Just my thoughts.

          Wendell
          Exactly. I would have gladly opted in and most likely kept the subscription. As it was, I did opt in - because they made me if I wanted to get what I'd just paid for. And then I promptly unsubscribed without reading one word of their welcome or 1st promotion or whatever it was. All they succeeded in doing was creating animosity and this long thread on WF. It worked exactly the opposite of how they probably intended. As a fellow marketer, it reeked of being amateurish, lazy, and boneheaded about the user experience.

          It has been enlightening to see how many people here defend this practice. Very eye-opening. It seems the majority of defenders' arguments amount to, 'Stop whining about something so trivial' and 'I wouldn't want you for a customer anyway.' Again, very enlightening reactions. I didn't anticipate that it would spark such a raging debate. I honestly thought I'd get a few "I agree" comments and the thread would die an early death. I just wanted to vent a bit and let other marketers know what a fellow marketer who is also often a customer thought about this tactic. It turned out to be a real learning experience to see that there were so many defenders and just what their actual arguments were.

          John
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        • Profile picture of the author Midas3 Consulting
          Hey Wendell,

          In my case, we take details because we also provide customers with a free private forum access to help them with any questions they have about the product, our team pretty much provides them with 1 on 1 assistance with achieving their goals, we take their e-mail and a username of their choice to parse into our private members only database.

          We then send them an e-mail so they can confirm it's them and that somebody hasn't just used their e-mail against their wishes, and then they get private access.

          I didn't bother explaining it in detail as it just seemed some folks where in full scale rant mode and at times, you just lose the will to live explaining that not everything is as black and white as it seems in the real world of marketing.

          All the best.
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          • Profile picture of the author WendellC
            Originally Posted by SimonHarrison View Post

            Hey Wendell,

            In my case, we take details because we also provide customers with a free private forum access to help them with any questions they have about the product, our team pretty much provides them with 1 on 1 assistance with achieving their goals, we take their e-mail and a username of their choice to parse into our private members only database.

            We then send them an e-mail so they can confirm it's them and that somebody hasn't just used their e-mail against their wishes, and then they get private access.

            I didn't bother explaining it in detail as it just seemed some folks where in full scale rant mode and at times, you just lose the will to live explaining that not everything is as black and white as it seems in the real world of marketing.

            All the best.
            Simon -

            Hi.

            Sounds like you offer EXCELLENT value for the price of an email address. I'd probably sign up 99% of the time!

            ...And if you told me all that I would be getting for opting in then that number would be even closer to 100%.

            Take care and somebody get me a fan. I'm dying from the heat here in SoCal!

            Wendell
            Signature

            List your no opt-in product here for free: No Opt In Required

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  • I'm not sure I understand the beef. You want to buy a product but don't want the vendor to know who you are? Identity theft is a huge problem, and I'm collecting customer info to protect my customers, not to spam them. You have to get an e-mail from me with the link to the product. This is so that if somebody steals your credit card, I at least have their e-mail to give to the authorities.

    Maybe I should make it more clear that that's what I'm doing, not putting you on a sucker list.
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  • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
    SurviveUnemployment,

    I'm so tired of explaining this over and over that I think this will be the last time. If some of you can't be bothered to read what's actually being written, so be it.

    The 'beef' is not that I had to opt in and confirm to get the product. I would not have minded that in the least. The problem is not being made aware of that fact until after my payment had been processed. So the seller got me to buy something by telling me, 'Pay me $XX and I'll give you an instant download of this product.' But that wasn't the actual price. The price was actually, 'Pay me $XX, opt in to my list, confirm your opt-in, and then I'll let you download this product.' Fair enough, but ONLY if you make that clear up front. Don't take my money and only then throw in an extra condition of the purchase. In any rational assessment, that is unethical. Period.
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  • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
    Pnigro,

    Then you're the very kind of marketer I'll never buy from. Thanks for making it clear that you'd rather sneak something like that in AFTER someone has paid you (under false pretenses) than to operate transparently - which means ethically - and with FULL DISCLOSURE. You want to take my money, which you do, then you want to add another condition to the sale before you deliver the product. That's patently, unquestionably wrong. The form it takes is irrelevant. The ease with which someone can then unsubscribe is irrelevant. That's just your way of rationalizing an underhanded tactic.

    Seriously, I appreciate that you outed yourself for us all. No sarcasm intended. I genuinely thank you.

    John
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    • Profile picture of the author Pnigro
      Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

      Pnigro,

      Then you're the very kind of marketer I'll never buy from. Thanks for making it clear that you'd rather sneak something like that in AFTER someone has paid you (under false pretenses) than to operate transparently - which means ethically - and with FULL DISCLOSURE. You want to take my money, which you do, then you want to add another condition to the sale before you deliver the product. That's patently, unquestionably wrong. The form it takes is irrelevant. The ease with which someone can then unsubscribe is irrelevant. That's just your way of rationalizing an underhanded tactic.

      Seriously, I appreciate that you outed yourself for us all. No sarcasm intended. I genuinely thank you.

      John
      I just don't think it's necessary to change my sales page.

      Most (if not all) of my customers won't care about putting their email address after they buy.

      They won't care because:

      1) They like me and trust me enough to actually buy from me.

      2) I explain to them the legitimate reasons I have for doing so.

      3) It takes them like 5 seconds to do it.

      4) My market is not the "make money online" market, which means that they are not constantly being bombarded with squeeze pages and opt-in forms.

      5) My market is a spanish market, which means I was probably the first list they ever subscribed to.

      So, changing my sales page won't make a difference.

      Probably 1 out of 1,000 customers will appreciate it. Others won't even notice.

      The main problem I have with you is that you are trying to demonize all the marketers that don't put this little message in the sales page saying "hey, I'm going to ask for your email after you buy".

      It's such a trivial thing and so unnecessary in my opinion.

      Sorry but I 100% disagree with you.

      Don't try to make me look bad or evil just because I don't share your opinion. I have clearly explained in this post the reasons why I won't do what you say.
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  • The problem is not being made aware of that fact until after my payment had been processed.
    So if you had to give your e-mail address just to get to the payment processing stage in the first place, this wouldn't be a problem for you?

    Thanks for the heads-up, by the way. I'm going to add a notice that the reason I'm collecting the info is to protect the customer, not to add them to a sucker list. In fact, I'll explicitly state that the information will not be used for marketing purposes.

    [update: Added the following message to my checkout page]

    "After filling out this form and clicking "Submit Order," you will be directed to PayPal to process payment securely. If you do not have a PayPal account, you can pay with any major credit card through PayPal. We collect this information to protect you from identity theft. It will absolutely not be used for marketing purposes."
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  • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
    So, changing my sales page won't make a difference.
    The difference will be huge. It's the difference between being completely up front with everyone before you get their money and holding something back. You continue to make it abundantly clear that you don't get this, or (and I hope this isn't the case) that you do get it and just don't care.

    Probably 1 out of 1,000 customers will appreciate it. Others won't even notice.
    Obviously that's a complete guess on your part. Test it. Make it optional, as Paul has mentioned. See if your unsubscribe rate drops, rises, or stays the same. See if your sales conversions per email is affected. But then, all of that is secondary. The real point is that you will have made your process ethical and transparent. You'll be a better seller, no matter what.

    The main problem I have with you is that you are trying to demonize all the marketers that don't put this little message in the sales page saying "hey, I'm going to ask for your email after you buy".
    Nope. That's you continuing to misconstrue what I'm actually complaining about. It's very tiresome to have to keep explaining. Put it on your sales page only IF you plan to use the FORCED OPT-IN system you seem to currently use. If, on the other hand, you do the right thing and make it optional, you can spring it on them during the sales process, with or without a mention on your sales page. That's the crux of this matter, which we've made abundantly clear pages ago. Forced opt-in without prior disclosure is unethical because you've taken the money before you disclosed all the conditions of the sale. You said, 'This product requires you to pay me $XX.' So I said, 'OK, I'll buy your product under those conditions.' Then I paid you. Only THEN did you divulge that there is another condition before I will get what I just paid you for under the previous conditions. Please tell me this is getting through to you. If you can't acknowledge this simple reality, you're a lost cause.

    It's such a trivial thing and so unnecessary in my opinion.
    If you acknowledge that you have added a new condition after payment was taken and before delivery was provided, then you cannot possibly believe that it's a "trivial" thing... unless you are an unethical seller. There is no other option.

    Don't try to make me look bad or evil just because I don't share your opinion. I have clearly explained in this post the reasons why I won't do what you say.
    I'm not trying to make you look bad or evil. Your own actions are doing that. I'm simply pointing those actions and their repercussions out to you.... apparently for the first time. Your continued defense of a clearly unethical choice you've made in your sales process only makes you look worse. Give your customers a choice OR tell them before you take their money that you require more than just their money to gain access to your product. Those are you only two remedies. Continuing as you are makes you an unethical seller. I'm sorry, but facts are facts, regardless of your feelings.

    John
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    • Profile picture of the author susanm
      I have to agree with John. Really, please stop doing this. I may not complain so loudly when it happens to me, but make no mistake about it. It DOES piss me off, it IS unethical, and it negatively influences me against buying stuff from you again. Just because you never hear from your customers about it, don't assume that it doesn't matter. It does.

      Susan
      Signature

      Just passing through.

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      • Profile picture of the author Julian Lockhart
        It may be trivial to you but that doesn't make it trival for everyone else. That's where you are failing. Why so positional?

        OK, I so I get you need to make sure that the customer get's on the new list, etc.

        If you stopped for a second and read the complaints and thought "How can I solve this guys issue?" Rather than thinking "he just a whiner." You might already have a solution.

        So the short answer it is totally unnecessary to have a optin at DL page. DO IT IN THE BACKGROUND.

        You can use the email parser as someone has already stated.

        How Do I Integrate Clickbank With AWeber? :: AWeber Knowledge Base

        Instant Notification Service

        I read the aweber integration part which says you have to have use the email that CB uses to notify you of an order. This is not Ideal but would work.

        A better solution would be to use CB's instant notification service. You have INS post to your site which in turn can email aweber the customers data.

        Sure it's a little work upfront but it makes for more happy customers.

        You do want that don't you?


        PS I really do get that zeus's only issue is with that if you tell someone instant it should be instant. Don't add another hoop.
        Signature
        Biz Launch Box - Marketing Consultant
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        • Profile picture of the author Pnigro
          Originally Posted by Julian Lockhart View Post

          It may be trivial to you but that doesn't make it trival for everyone else. That's where you are failing. Why so positional?

          OK, I so I get you need to make sure that the customer get's on the new list, etc.

          If you stopped for a second and read the complaints and thought "How can I solve this guys issue?" Rather than thinking "he just a whiner." You might already have a solution.

          So the short answer it is totally unnecessary to have a optin at DL page. DO IT IN THE BACKGROUND.

          You can use the email parser as someone has already stated.

          How Do I Integrate Clickbank With AWeber? :: AWeber Knowledge Base

          Instant Notification Service

          I read the aweber integration part which says you have to have use the email that CB uses to notify you of an order. This is not Ideal but would work.

          A better solution would be to use CB's instant notification service. You have INS post to your site which in turn can email aweber the customers data.

          Sure it's a little work upfront but it makes for more happy customers.

          You do want that don't you?


          PS I really do get that zeus's only issue is with that if you tell someone instant it should be instant. Don't add another hoop.
          Forgot to say:

          I'm an affiliate, not a vendor.

          I have NO OTHER CHOICE than to use CBListAutomator and have them join my buyers list after they pay.
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  • Profile picture of the author Steven D Smith
    I also agree with John, and would rather choose to "opt in", rather than be forced to. It's a small annoyance, but it does make a difference.

    Steve
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    • Profile picture of the author csm
      When I buy a product that offers lifetime updates, be it an ebook or software, I have no objection to being added to a list in order to be notified of updates.

      However, what infuriates me, is when the marketer sends constant unrelated pitches to that same list. Some marketers even keep separate lists for purchasers of their separate products, so if I've purchased more than one product from them, I get multiple duplicate messages from them for all their future pitches, regardless of whether it relates to the products I purchased.

      If you have the ability to set up multiple lists for each product you sell, then you also have the ability to set up a separate list for unrelated pitches.

      Why can't sellers in the IM field do the same as retail establishments? When someone buys a product, you can add them to your customer list that is related only to the specific purchase, but then ask them if they are willing to receive other messages of interest from you in future? So ask permission to be added to a generic list, and keep the list related to the individual product purchase *only* for future announcements about that product.

      Then you can send your pitches to only one list, which is a combination of your customers from any product you've ever sold, that have specifically agreed to get messages from you about things other than product updates. And those loyal customers who may have purchased multiple products from you over the years won't get irritated to receive three or four identical messages every time you send a pitch.

      I've opted out of so many lists because I was bombarded with pitches, only to realize that I've missed important announcements related to updates of products I did purchase and did want to be informed about.

      Susan
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  • Profile picture of the author M.T.
    Yes i agree,

    The best way to get someone to opt in after purchase is the have a op-tin box on the download page under the download link. you could put something like: "if you are happy with your purchase please op-tin to be notified of future products"

    You will not get so many opt-ins, but what is the point of having 1000's of forced opt-ins, most will unsubscribe anyway.

    Once you are forced to op-tin you feel you have been shafted before you even read the product !!!!

    MT
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Giving them the option to opt-in or not is stupid because if they decide to NOT opt-in then they will keep receiving promotional emails forever, which will surely make them very angry.
      If you give them a choice and inform them of the reasons, why would they be angry? Does your unsubscribe method not work?
      This is ridiculous.

      What a bunch of crybabies.

      "Mommy! He made me opt-in! I won't ever buy anything from him again!"
      Well, if making choices about who I deal with based on their treatment of others makes me a crybaby, count me in. Odd choice of labels, but I can work with it.
      I'm an affiliate, not a vendor.
      So, you don't control the download page.
      I have NO OTHER CHOICE than to
      Almost any statement following those words is a lie; an attempt to evade responsibility, or the desire to avoid stating one's real motivations.

      Of course you have a choice. You simply choose to do things a certain way for your own benefit. Nothing wrong with that, but you're lying if you claim you don't have any other choice.


      Paul
      Signature
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      Stop by Paul's Pub - my little hangout on Facebook.

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      • Profile picture of the author Pnigro
        LOL ok, I'm irresponsible and unethical :rolleyes:

        btw I do control the download page using CBListAutomator
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  • Profile picture of the author Justin1
    Interesting thread.
    Basically, I dont care about what emails I get, I am on so many lists its ridiculous, but Im fine with that, one click and POOF they are removed with no more mailings, so its not an issue for me.
    HOWEVER, I was thinking this morning (I intend to launch some adult theme wso's soon) that this is a good way to build the list on someone that has already bought from you, HOWEVER, if I use paypal, I will already have their email right? SO I would simply copy it into a new group on Aweber, assuming there isnt a mass of people which would make it long to do, but if the payment processor collects the email anyway, then maybe I wouldnt bother with the opt in. I am so used to opt ins these days, I really dont mind after buying something, I will just opt out instantly if it pains me or whatever.....
    Signature

    Looking for sites for sale, especially survival/prepper sites if anyone has any available, please pm me, thanks.

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