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So, let me state the obvious—we live in an increasingly connected world, and we are connected through our use of multiple devices like smartphones, tablets, laptops, Xbox 360, the Tesla dashboard, etc. It turns out that of the primary digital devices (phones, tablets, and computers) 66% of us own two and 36% own all three devices.[1]

This is important to performance marketers because affiliate promotion can occur on any of the devices listed above—all of which have unique cookies (the primary method for performance marketing tracking). When the promotion and the conversion occur on the same device (as is most often the case on a computer) performance marketing has no trouble attributing the correct promotion to the transaction.

In our increasingly connected world, it is not uncommon for promotion to occur on one device and conversion on another. Let me give you an example:

Say you’ve dropped your spouse off at the store and are waiting in your car until they come out. To pass the time you start surfing on your phone for that red shirt you need for a Valentine’s Day party. You search for ‘red shirt’ and are presented with a paid affiliate search result from redshirt.com which you immediately click to check it out. You like the shirt, but decide it would be too much of a hassle to go through the checkout process on your phone, so you decide to wait until you can access redshirt.com on your computer. Once home, you go straight to your desktop to do exactly that, and eagerly await the arrival of the gorgeous shirt which you know will make you stand out at the party.

So, what happens to the commission the affiliate should have earned through that paid search result? It is likely that the affiliate network tracked the click and cookied your phone, but since that cookie wasn’t also available on the computer when you bought the shirt, the affiliate loses out on the commission.

Fortunately, LinkConnector has a solution. We have developed a technology called Cross Platform Tracking (CPT), which not only tracks cross promotions by device, but also tracks it by platform. Think of a platform as two browsers (e.g., Chrome and Firefox) on a computer. Each platform has unique cookies, and unless promotion and conversion occur on the same platform, traditional network tracking cannot credit the promotion.

As you can imagine, our CPT solution requires quite a bit of data to operate successfully. Since launching this new technology early last year, we have added CPT Partners who assist us in acquiring the necessary data. The results so far have been excellent with over 2.5% of our current transactions having CPT cookies. The chart below shows the trending involvement since December 2015.

The ceiling for CPT crediting is unknown, but it is clear that we have not reached it yet. How can you help? Become a CPT Partner with LinkConnector—your involvement will result in increased commissions to you and to other affiliate marketers alike. After all, isn’t that why we do what we do?

[1] PewResearch Center

4 thoughts on “Cross Platform Tracking: A Breakthrough in Affiliate Marketing Technology

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