There was an interesting post on this blog other day about link tracking and it made me start to think a bit more about link monitoring. We all think about the possibility of affiliate networks shaving offers and redirecting our traffic and messing with landing pages, so I wanted to create something that would monitor these types of changes.
What I went on to create is a piece of software I have been using for a couple months now and I thought this would be a great way to help affiliates make sure no advertiser or network is playing around with their affiliate link. I say this because, an affiliate link is basically a cloaked redirect link and who ever holds that redirect link can clearly have control.
For example an affiliate network can have control over your link and adjust or insert another redirect URL if they wanted to, getting less than 1% of traffic. Even worse, an advertiser can redirect their tracking link if they wanted to and get less than 1% of your traffic as well, screwing with a trusted affiliate network and worst the publisher/affiliate. One percent might not sound like a lot, but a small number out of a big number definitely adds up!
This is why I created Offer Snitch for myself, making sure this doesnâ€™t happen. Believe me it has happened to me several times. Now there are good networks out there and great advertisers as well, but sometimes we canâ€™t control everything.
For example ,what happens when an offer goes down? Even worse, gets redirected to an offer wall? Are you notified of these changes? I bet you do not even get an email of any changes to the offer you are running. With the hundred of networks out there and thousands of offers continually running, it’s just too easy to slip minor changes in here and there.
Offer Snitch, monitors your links – similar to how pingdom pings your sites every so often making sure it is up. This link monitoring system scans your links and the final website making sure it is up and nothing changes while active.
You can watch a video tutorial on how OfferSnitch works here.
The best part about Offer Snitch is the fact it also crawls the advertiserâ€™s or final website to make sure no changes happen while you are promoting their offer. Sometimes advertisers do not run their own traffic internally to test, they depend on the affiliate to bring them traffic and they use their traffic to test.
This isnâ€™t good because you are sending traffic to an offer with a simple submit such as a 3 field submit. Now you prepare your traffic, landing page, and ad copy geared towards that landing page. You are converting very well…
Now the advertiser is seeing this campaign as a whole and wants to test a 5 field submit instead of 3. They switch out the form from 3 to 5 field and test to see if they convert better. Is the network notified? Are you as an affiliate notified of this change? Probably not.
You put in all that hard work for a landing page with 3 fields, you even state that in your copy. Now when traffic lands on this advertisers landing page and see 5 – you lose out, especially if you are paying for your traffic.
Offer Snitch sends you a warning making sure this doesn’t happen. You did your work and research to make sure your campaign converts the best way possible but you have it ruined by the advertiser.
Link monitoring is an important factor in affiliate marketing. It makes sure you are notified of offers when they go down, changes in the advertisers landing page, and making sure no one is taking your traffic. This tool has helped me a lot and I know it can help you as an affiliate marketer.
When’s the last time an affiliate network changed around a landing page or link destination on you?
This guest post was written by Ian Fernando, an affiliate marketer and blogger. You can read Ian’s blog at IanFernando.com and also check out his latest link and stats tracking software at OfferSnitch.com.