Post Affiliate Pro implements advanced types of tracking to create accurate tracking results.
Weak tracking methods as IP address tracking or browser cookie tracking are just complementary tracking methods to strong flash cookie tracking.
Post Affiliate Pro always uses the strongest possible tracking methods, and falls down only in the event tracking methods are not available for a specific visitor.
Tracking methods are evaluated in the following order:
1. Flash cookie tracking
2. Browser cookie tracking - First party cookie stored on tracked domain
3. Browser cookie tracking - Third party cookie stored on domain of Post Affiliate Pro
4. IP address tracking
Flash Cookie Tracking
This is the strongest and most accurate tracking method. It is based on Flash player, which is currently installed in more than 98% of all Internet browsers.
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Read more in our Knowledgebase
Browser cookie tracking
This is a tracking method, which is not as strong as Flash Cookie tracking, but is a very good complementary backup method in case Flash cookie tracking can't be used (e.g. happens in very rare cases when Flash player is not installed in browser). This is the most commonly used tracking method in other affiliate software, that doesn't support Flash cookie tracking. This is one of the biggest reasons that customers choose Post Affiliate Pro instead of other affiliate tracking software. PAP is much more accurate with Flash cookie tracking.
Browser cookies have disadvantages:
- Cookies registered in one browser will not work in another browser on the same computer (e.g. Internet Explorer, Opera, Safari, Firefox and others)
- Users can easily delete cookies in the browser user interface, so the sales will not be tracked correctly
In addition to those disadvantages, there are browser cookies — safe tracking methods capable of tracking sales with the same data quality. All parameters tracked with Flash cookies can then be saved in browser cookies as well, but still lacking the cross browser support.
Read more about cookies created by Post Affiliate Pro
Tracking referrals by IP
This method is only used when the browser cookies can’t be found, as well as when no flash player is installed in browser. This happens rarely, but Post Affiliate Pro counts those events.
During the sale tracking process, we search for the last known click from the visitor’s IP. If we find it, then the affiliate and campaign id from this click is used, and sales commission can be created.
Extended Tracking Methods
Besides the standard tracking methods (IP tracking, browser cookies) and advanced tracking methods (Flash cookies) there are other possibilities how to track your affiliates. Post Affiliate Pro has a number of extended tracking methods.
Lot of customers find the report of impressions useful. Impression is an action when a banner was seen by a potential customer, but not clicked. Post Affiliate Pro gives you an option to see these statistics per each banner/link.
Why is it useful? Imagine you have an affiliate who has thousands of visits per day but based on impression statistics, you can see that just a few people really clicked your ad. With this info you can act - you can find out why customers don‘t click (wrongly placed banner at the website, irrelevant product promotion, banner not interesting enough). You can easily use the customer potential from that website if you point it out correctly and turn traffic into sales. Impression tracking will help you with it!
The most reliable way how to track proper affiliate is to use this tracking method. When an affiliate refers a customer to your shop and the customer registers or purchases something, Post Affiliate Pro will tie this customer with the affiliate internally. Next time when the customer shops with your, they do not even have to use the same computer, they can login from completely different country but the commission will still be tracked correctly. It is up to you what data will be used to tie affiliate with customer – email, or some unique customer ID from the shop you use…
This is a real specialty! You can track whatever you want – if a video was seen and watched by a customer, if they clicked a special one-time offer, if they came from an email or if somebody clicked a button for a free newsletter… You can even track all the steps the customer is taking at your website – clicking introduction, ‘more info’ page, testimonials, then order page and final thank you page… With action tracking there are no limits!
Private commissions and Special commissions
I am sure you were thinking about having extra affiliates who you want to give special commissions but you do not want other affiliates know. Two affiliates will get a different commission on the same product. This is possible with commission groups. You can even create a whole campaign which will be private and only invited affiliates will see its commissions and banners.
Per product tracking
In case you have more campaigns with different commission levels you need to use per product tracking. This method enables you to track each product separately to avoid wrongly computed commissions for products which do not belong to a specific campaign. Easy-to-use setup gives you an option to specify it per product or per category or even per shop (in case you operate more shops).
Offline tracking (Coupons)
Yes, it is possible! Nowadays people like offline tracking more then they used to. There are hundreds of websites that offer discounts for food and holiday and other stuff – they use coupon codes. The offline tracking is based on coupons. Each affiliate has their own coupon(s) which can be used by customers. If such a coupon is used, Post Affiliate Pro will track the sale even the coupon was used from a printed media. Thanks to this, your affiliates can promote you in a local newspaper or spreading leaflets on their streets... Awesome!