CashBackBooking Review: Travelocity affiliate feeder
There is no information on the CashBackBooking website indicating who owns or runs the business.
The CashBackBooking’s website domain (“cashbackbooking.com”) was registered on the 12th of September 2012, however the domain registration is set to private.
As always, if an MLM company is not openly upfront about who is running or owns it, think long and hard about joining and/or handing over any money.
The CashBackBooking Product Line
CashBackBooking themselves don’t have any products or services of their own. Instead a quick look at the company’s website source-code reveals the use of the third-party domain “wctravel.com”.
A visit to this domain reveals that it belongs to the “Travelocity Partner Network”.
Travelocity are a travel portal who offer qualified affiliates participation in a free affiliate program, that pays out commissions when people purchase travel through their travel portals.
Whoever is running CashBackBooking has simply signed up as a Travelocity affiliate and is now looking to build their Travelocity business by getting people to purchase travel through CashBackBooking.
The CashBackBooking Compensation Plan
The CashBackBooking compensation plan shares the commissions Travelocity pay the owner of the company with affiliates who sign up at the CashBackBooking website.
Note that the quoted percentages below are not on the money customers or CashBackBooking affiliates pay for their travel, but are rather on the commissions Travelocity pay the owner of CashBackBooking.
Unfortunately I couldn’t find any specifics on the Travelocity Partner Network website indicating exactly what percentage (average or otherwise) they pay their affiliates for each booking made.
In anycase, CashBackBooking’s compensation plan combines Travelocity’s affiliate commissions with an MLM unilevel compensation structure, paying out on five levels of recruitment.
A unilevel compensation structure places an affiliate at the top of the structure with every personally recruited affiliate placed directly under them (level 1).
If any of these recruited affiliates on level 1 recruit new affiliates of their own, they are placed on level 2 of the original affiliates structure. If any level 2 affiliates recruit new affiliates they are placed on level 3 and so on and so forth.
Using the above structure, CashBackBooking pays out 10% of the Travelocity commission paid to them on all travel bookings generated down five levels by an affiliate’s unilevel team.
CashBackBooking also offer a 50% share of the Travelocity commission paid to them on an affiliate’s own travel bookings, as well as 50% on any customer (non-affiliate) bookings made by visitors to a CashBackBooking affiliate’s replicated travel booking replicated website (powered by Travelocity’s booking engine).
As Travelocity charge the owner of CashBackBooking no fees to participate in their affiliate program, there is no charge to join CashBackBooking as an affiliate.
Note however that prospective affiliates cannot join the company without use of a referral link belonging to an existing CashBackBooking affiliate.
Putting aside the dodginess of not providing company ownership information and a private domain registration (which in MLM always raises an immediate red flag), on the surface there’s nothing inherently problematic with the CashBackBooking MLM opportunity.
Despite not offering the travel services available themselves, there’s a clear retail offering and no commissions paid out on the recruitment of new affiliates. All commissions are generated solely on travel bookings made through CashBackBooking affiliate’s provided replicated travel booking websites.
In using a third-party provider to power their booking engine and provide travel deals to their affiliates and customers, what I do call into question however is CashBackBooking’s product value.
Travelocity affiliates do go through a screening process before being accepted into the affiliate scheme, however the requirements aren’t all that rigorous:
In order to be approved for our travel affiliate program, we ask that your site meet the following criteria:
-You plan on implementing the WCT/TPN booking engines on your site within 30 days.
-You will not feature our competitors’ booking engines on your site without TPN authorization
-You are confident your minimum sales will include no fewer than 40 hotel or airline bookings per month.
-You have experience with online marketing and driving traffic to your website, including Search Engine Marketing (SEM).
-You must submit proper tax documentation (US Federal W8 or W9 form) within 10 business days or the account will be automatically closed.
I’m not exactly sure what happens if the owner of CashBackBooking doesn’t generate the required 40 bookings a month, but they seem to be confident enough that they will hit this target.
Anyway, getting back to the value of the CashBackBooking product, with these travel deals available to anyone who signs up as a Travelocity affiliate, exclusivity becomes problematic in that CashBackBooking don’t really bring anything unique to the MLM travel niche.
By signing up as an affiliate all you’re doing is helping the owner of CashBackBooking hit that 40 a month booking target and sharing either 50% or 10% of the commissions Travelocity pay them, per booking you or your downline generate.
If you’re comfortable with that then by all means go for it, but as far as MLM business opportunities go there’s really not all that much to signing up to a third-party affiliate program and attaching an MLM business opportunity to it.