The affiliate marketing industry is adapting to another notable tracking technology change. First, there was GDPR, then came Safari ITP 2.0, and now we are dealing with Google’s Parallel Tracking (PT). Needless to say, that has kept our IT Department busy!
The great news for our customers is that LinkConnector has met all these technology challenges head on and conquered them in a timely manner. Today we can report that we’ve solved the issues presented by Parallel Tracking.
What are those issues you may ask? Well, first a little background. Google has announced (see https://support.google.com/google-ads/answer/7544674?hl=en) that they will require all advertisers using their AdWords platform to have ads set up to accommodate PT by October 30, 2018.
PT requires advertisers who use tracking links to fill in two more variables in their ads—Final URL and Final URL suffix as they are used when Google determines that PT is available for a click (about 20% of the time currently). For affiliates advertising with the AdWords platform PT will break tracking for Safari 12 users (increasing rapidly) and present additional challenges in getting information about a promotion to the advertiser’s landing page.
Networks, tracking solutions, and tag managers that haven’t provided their customers the variables for AdWords will find that PT breaks dynamic tracking. Most tag managers rely on some dynamic parameter to identify the promoting source. Networks and tracking solutions have always controlled tracking with their redirects. Going forward, the affiliate/publisher will have to assist in maintaining that control by placing the appropriate values into the Final URL and Final URL suffix.
So, what has LinkConnector done for our affiliates to enable their preparation for Parallel Tracking:
- Affiliates have several places in LC’s interface as well as an API function to obtain the variables needed to populate AdWords for PT.
- LinkConnector tested to ensure our tracking URL accepts and stores the dynamic Google clickid (gclid), so it can be cross referenced with our own clickid (lctid), enabling Safari ITP 2.0 limitations to be overcome.
- LinkConnector’s interface includes instructions on the dashboard concerning PT and the steps an affiliate needs to take to be compatible.
LinkConnector’s Affiliate Relations team is reaching out to affiliates who advertise using AdWords, but feel free to contact them yourself if you are an affiliate needing assistance, or a publisher in another network that wishes to take advantage of the fact that LinkConnector is Parallel Tracking compliant.