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Be on the right track Part 2 – Analyzing your trackers

Published by Papa Whale Affiliate Marketing

This week, we'll continue covering trackers and we'll take a look at the best practices you should follow, for the ultimate analysis of your data in the end.

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Trackers are the roots of relevant data generation. In other words, they are the keystone of optimization triumph.

In our first post, Be on the Right Track – Part 1 – Tracking Basics, we touched on how premium affiliates already know the importance of using trackers — and how to most — using trackers is second nature.

The biggest affiliates in the game know that to truly plump up one’s bank account, things have to be done the right way.  Tracking analysis is no exception.

This week, we’ll continue covering trackers and we’ll take a look at the best practices you should follow, for the ultimate analysis of your data in the end.

What?

Trackers are data.

And data is information.  But, as we already pointed out, it needs to be relevant to your traffic.

Obviously, you don’t wanna be losing your time on the analysis of useless data – it would be like analysing the intellectual contribution of Britney Spears on the discovery of Higgs boson.

A great starting point to using trackers is to consider them as little memory cues.

Use them to identify things that can jog your memory of what you’ve done (that turned out to be successful), or that provide you with great insight of your success.

In this case, using unique trackers to describe your different campaigns is a fantastic start, especially if you plan to run a few different campaigns from the same traffic source.

Not only that, but you’ll get even more detail by adding trackers to the creative you’re using (GIF or flash?, Did the 300×250 convert the most, or was it the 950×250 ?).  The sky’s the limit in how detailed can be.

We recommend using a unique tracker per product.  And why would you need to do that when your basis stats already give you an overview of each product or offer’s performance?

Well, the reason being:  this allows you to see how the non-accepted GEOs are handled and what new offers your visitors are being redirected to.

If a high percentage of your traffic is being redirected, promoting another product might be a good idea.  This leads us to our second point…

Where?

One of the main uses of trackers is to give you indication on the source where your traffic is coming from.

In other words, it is paramount to name the origin of your traffic, whatever it is – Ad Network or website – with a relevant tracker.  It’s also important to describe the placement of each ad in the tracker (example: Header, footer, etc.).

Finally, tracking your GEOs is unavoidable:  beyond the evidence of checking your traffic sources, it also allows you to keep an eye on your investment. For example, if you buy 100% US traffic, you’re gonna want to make sure you’re only getting US traffic for your money.

By adding “US” as a tracker, you can confirm whether or not all traffic is really coming from the US from the ad network you bought from (when looking at the GEO stats only for the US tracker).  Always check your investment.

If you’re seeing traffic from another country under this tracker, you know to then contact the ad network!

When?

Time is relevant.

Even if emphasis on the date is not expressed in the trackers, the timeframe still matters in tracking analysis.

Use trackers from the start of each of your campaigns for ultimate clarity.  Make it a habit and do not break from this.  You want to know every little detail, inside and out.

Regarding the optimization that ensues from it, continue to optimize your campaigns as more data becomes available in the days that follow.

Tracker analysis for optimization purposes is a long-term endeavor.

In an A/B testing situation, make sure to collect the data from all trackers used for different periods in order to compare the data you have.  But, be careful comparing apples to oranges…

Week days, weekends, first or last weekof the month, season… heck, even the weather matters!  The results achieved during these time-frames varies immensely!

How?

Typically, you’d want to start with the most basic, and finish analyzing the most detailed stats.

For example, to link this idea to the previous point, you can begin analyzing the numbers of the last season, and then those of the past 2 weeks before analyzing yesterday’s numbers.

This way, you can check how your numbers vary from period to period.

And this works for all the questions you should be asking yourself regarding any of your trackers:

  • Which of my traffic sources is the most profitable?
  • Which of my creatives brings more traffic?  Which spot?
  • Which product works best on my traffic for this season?
  • Which GEO converts the best for each specific offer?
  • And so on…

Proper optimization comes from the winning combination of all the data collected by answering these questions.

Why?

We already answered this question last week: TO MAKE MORE MONEY!!!!

However, to really make the most money, the data you collected thanks to your trackers MUST be relevant.  i.e., your trackers need to be set the right way.

In our next post, we’ll share a table featuring some of our own trackers, to show you just how the pros do it.  No more getting caught up using inefficient trackers!

Read Part 3 HERE!

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