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  1. #1
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    How do I use Google Analytics to track a 3rd-party shopping cart?
    Hallo to all,

    I am a little new in the world of affiliate marketing and to the world of affiliates. I am a publisher and has launched my second website a few months back. I was looking for learning the tracking methods and also hiding the affiliate links with some java script, php, asp or any other redirection method like 301 or 302 .htaccess redirects. At the moment I am using php to redirect my visitors to the merchant site. I am not sure how safe this method is from the terms of tracking (if my links are getting tracked properly by the Affiliate Network and Merchant). Would like to see some comments and recommendations from the more experienced experts in this form (THANKS in advanced to abestweb.com and all the good people in this forum who are willing to help others).

    Well NOW TO THE TOPIC of HEADING : How do I use Google Analytics to track a 3rd-party shopping cart?

    During my search I came to this page on google ---> http://www.google.com/support/google...n&answer=55532

    Well as I said I am not expirienced enough to understand these things very soon ( It takes for me some time to understand these technical and Code and Script things ) I thaught I post this link in forum and ask for the experience of others who understand that what google is saying and if someone in this forum have already made any experiences with this Google Java script for tracking.....

    Thanks and regards to all Matures and youngs.

    Twikker.

  2. #2
    Visual Artist & ABW Ambassador lostdeviant's Avatar
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    You need to install the code on your main site and your site that has the shopping cart.

  3. #3
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    Thanks Lostdeviant

    That means it is not some thing for Publishers as I thought to track the visitors which are going to the merchants sites from my site and buy there some product.....

    And what about the PHP redirect script? Can you please enlighten me with that a little bit. I have a wordpress.org based site, first i tried to use some wp-affiliate plugin on my site (it do 302 redirects!!! even if the owner of the plugin said it do 301 redirects? I checked with w3schools linkchecker.) but MY affiliate Network didn't tracked the clicks of the visitors at all (but it LOOKED LIKE even than from MERCHANT's point of view every thing seems to be working properly)!!!! I as a visitor on my site when clicked on my affiliate link it redirected me to the RIGHT page and at the end of URL i was able to see ?myaffiliatenetwork.

    The links were not getting tracked by the affiliate network, as they gave me affiliate links to redirect my visitors like this -- www.merchantname.affiliatenetwork.com

    That means they were redirecting the clicks through there own server (where a software program COUNTED the clicks that how many visitors I send every day).

    After using php redirects it SEEMS to be working ok. I tried that meta refresh also, and it also didn't got tracked!!!! why I don't know Amazingly.

    What is the best method from your experience from past? 301, 302(.htaccess), java script, php or asp, or something else.

    Is it even possible REALLY to track the visitors if they made really any sale (I heared of that 1X1 pixel thing - well I am really very new to all this stuff yet and have very less knowledge of all these things, will take some time for me to learn the things). What do you say what can be done, any advice for me your side (or also from all other abestweb users).

    Thanks and Regards.

  4. #4
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    I am worried about the php redirects because of this comment on one another blog at

    clickconsultants.web/using-php-to-redirect-affiliate-links

    Quote Originally Posted by Comment by John
    2008-06-30 11:14:30
    As said, not a safe way to redirect. Php header is not changing the refering headers so they can see where your visitor was before they were redirected. So if you are sending some shady traffic or just don’t trust your affiliate manager, use meta refresh.
    Can someone please may clear the point.

    Thanks.

  5. #5
    Visual Artist & ABW Ambassador lostdeviant's Avatar
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    I don't see what php redirects have to do with "use google analytics to track a 3rd- party shopping cart".

  6. #6
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    Hello lostdeviant,

    I may have not been explained me right (excuse me for that). The php had nothing to do with google, that was just another question I wanted to get people's opinion.
    At the moment I am using php to redirect my visitors to the merchant site. I am not sure how safe this method is



    The google analytics thing I thought was made for tracking my affiliate sales, that's why I asked for someones experience if someone used anlytics (as publisher) and was able to track sales made by him.


    Thanks and regard
    twikker

  7. #7
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    You will only be able to track sales if YOUR tracking code is present on the order-confirmation or "thank-you" page. Since you don't control anything after the visitor clicks away from your web site, you can't set this up. This is simply not an option for 99% of merchants or affiliates, but a few super-affiliates report that a few merchants have been willing to set up the affiliate's tracking code on the order-confirmation page (by inserting the code into the page when the merchant detects that the affiliate was the original referrer).

    Note that most merchants (certainly the smaller ones) simply install the affiliate-network tracking code on the order-confirmation page, so that the affiliate network "sees" all transactions, including those which were not referred by any affiliate in the network. If the merchant participates in two or more affiliate networks, then there may be multiple sale-tracking codes triggered by each transaction (one for each network). The wiser strategy, for sophisticated merchants, is to track which customers were referred by which affiliate network, and ONLY display the tracking code for those transactions where the network was the "eligible referrer" entitled to credit for the transaction.

    Also: not all merchants rely on a tracking-code on the order-confirmation page; some track the transactions internally and report them (in batch mode") to the network. The "batch" method results in reporting delays, since the transaction might not be reported to the network for many hours (or days), but it should reduce the frequency of commission reversals.

    Since you can't get your code installed on the merchant's site, there is no way you can track sales conversions through Google Analytics (nor AdWords conversion tracking).

    Instead, you must somehow "match up" the available analytics data to any transaction data reported by your affiliate network(s). I've always done this "manually."

    Most networks allow you to append a custom tracking code to each URL (this could be serialized to match your internal log files, or it could embed codes to identify the source of the traffic, such as the name of the search-engine and the keyword-phrase that brought the consumer to your site). (For example, ShareASale offers a parameter called "afftrack," so you could append "&afftrack=AdWords_blue_gummy_fish" to a link URL and then any resulting transaction will show that code.)

    Unfortunately, the length and allowed contents for this field vary among networks, and some networks don't provide this mechanism at all.

    In theory, if a network or merchant doesn't provide any mechanism for appending your own tracking code to the link URL, but if the network does report the complete referring URL, then you might accomplish the same goal by appending URL parameters within your own web site (so they are embedded in the referring-url data). It would take many hours of design and programming effort to set this up.

    I am not aware of any third-party reporting tools (nor any software solutions) that can properly track and report "all relevant and available data." I've created my own internal "preliminary specification" for a set of tools that might accomplish this for my needs, but it's far down in the project queue.

  8. #8
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    Well thanks Mark,

    I have one another question on you know, I checked the links in your signs (the second one with > Free: Affiliate Advice for Merchants)

    I read about you and your projects there and at the end i found this --> (I will not work with LinkShare, Kowabunga/Kolimbo, nor PepperJam.)

    I have joined a few weeks back with kowabunga/kolimbo program for my (SECOND) site and promoting ticketnetwork.com through that ( I asked in another thread ---> WE CARE TOOLBAR http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread.php?t=115236 about ticketnetwork.com - they are listed in the list of we care toolbar merchants, If i should promote them).

    I don't want to promote any unethical systems, set up by some fraudy people.

    Tahnks.

  9. #9
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    Mark,

    I'd like to chime in here regarding the use of third party tracking. Granted, the Google image pixel is useless since it can't be placed at the Merchant's end. However, there is another viable (and free) solution available for those doing any sort of paid traffic where SID is used.

    Prosper202 can be used for any of the top 3 search engines as a means to track data. Since subids are registered, prosper will go to CJ and grab conversions using API. Each campaign will have a link generated in prosper. So, if you set up an ad in Google content or search, the destination URL is the Prosper URL, which in turn redirects your traffic to the Merchant with a whatever?SID=keyword.

    Once the sale is completed, the SID is recorded at the CJ and Prosper202 will grab the SID and correlate it to your keyword stats showing your the sale amount and winning keyword for that particular Merchant.

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