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  1. #1
    Affiliate Manager DrMarie's Avatar
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    calculating conversion rate
    If I am calculating my conversion rate, I understand I will do:
    visitors/conversions.

    I have a main landing page for my site amongst many other searchable pages. From any of these pages the user clicks on an "ask your question" button and then potentially pays to ask their veterinary question.

    So, for "visitors" do I use the total visitors to my site, the visitors to my main page, or the visitors to my ask a question page?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    overall conversion is calculated using all visitors to your site, not just the visitors to your sales page, or home page, or whatever other page.

  3. #3
    Affiliate Manager DrMarie's Avatar
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    Thanks, that's exactly what I needed to know!

    What if I have a blog, do I include that too?

  4. #4
    Outsourced Program Manager Chris -  AMWSO's Avatar
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    Hi Marie

    It really depends on how your site is set up and how you want to segment your conversion data. For example the Blog could be considered a totally seperate sales channel and therefore you might aim to track conversion rates based on that channel. At the same time you always want to know your "overall" conversion rate which means reviewing the traffic and sales from "all channels".

    You ideally need to have your conversion data known for each marketing channel so that you know where your marketing time and budget is best spent

    Cheers

    chris
    Affiliate Marketing by AMWSO. Skype - chrissanderson ::: TEL 1-720-336-1784 ::: www.amwso.net
    Join our affiliate programs :Vaper Empire, Iolo, Art of Tea, or See ALL our Programs here

  5. #5
    Affiliate Manager qualityunit's Avatar
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    In another thread I saw, that you use Post Affiliate Pro, which can compute conversion of each marketing channel for you.
    Just setup for each type of marketing channel virtual affiliate and use his affiliate link to drive traffic to your website.

    e.g. if you pay adwords, setup in adwords links to your site in format: www.yoursite.com#a_aid=adwords
    (one of your virtual affiliates will have referrer id adwords)

    in this way you can setup also virtual affiliates with direct links ... e.g. if you want to track traffic from site XYZ, just setup virtual affiliate for this site and create under his account direct link *.xyz.com/* .... in this way you can track exactly conversion of traffic from this site even if you will not use normal affiliate links
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Arial]Viktor Zeman[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [B][URL=http://www.qualityunit.com/]Quality Unit [/URL][/B] Founder and [B][URL=http://www.qualityunit.com/postaffiliatepro/]Post Affiliate Pro[/URL][/B] developer

  6. #6
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by qualityunit View Post
    Just setup for each type of marketing channel virtual affiliate and use his affiliate link to drive traffic to your website.
    So do those "virtual affiliate" links overwrite/override existing affiliate cookies? There's a very heated thread about that.
    Michael Coley
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  7. #7
    Affiliate Manager qualityunit's Avatar
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    yes, it is valid affiliate, but she can setup also split commission feature, which will assign commission to each affiliate working on sale. I'm not fan of cookie overwriting/overriding or old first/last affiliate gets all model .... I like, if every affiliate gets money in case he worked on sale

    e.g. if she pays adwords, she has real expense with this type of channel and it is fair, if part of commission is assigned to adwords, if it was in part of decission process of customer ... in same way any other affiliate can pay for adwords and receive commissions for such clicks from merchant.

    I don't recommend her to fake affiliate commissions! It was a way how to track conversion.
    She can create also custom campaigns for such virtual affiliates and register 2 types of sales in same time or assign those virtual affiliates to zero commission group in case it is just question of tracking.

    There is really a lot of options how to configure it right, so I would not be afraid of stealing of commissions from other affiliates. It would be not fair and other affiliates will discover it quickly.
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Arial]Viktor Zeman[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [B][URL=http://www.qualityunit.com/]Quality Unit [/URL][/B] Founder and [B][URL=http://www.qualityunit.com/postaffiliatepro/]Post Affiliate Pro[/URL][/B] developer

  8. #8
    Affiliate Manager DrMarie's Avatar
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    Thanks guys!

    I am mostly interested in conversion rate so that I can advertise it to my new potential affiliates.

    If I use my overall visitors to calculate my conversion rate then a good number of those visitors are people who were attracted to an article or a blog post. However, for affiliates I think it would be more useful to track visitors who entered on the home page. But, I want to be accurate in my representation to affiliates!

  9. #9
    Outsourced Program Manager Chris -  AMWSO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelColey View Post
    So do those "virtual affiliate" links overwrite/override existing affiliate cookies? There's a very heated thread about that.
    I find the best solution to this is to use a network for the affiliate tracking and then use the inhouse affiliate program to track sales for other channels. That way there is no overwrite between affiliates and other channels, plus the site owner gets more info on the multiple touch points involved in the sales cycle, which can be very enlightening and educational.

    Cheers

    chris
    Affiliate Marketing by AMWSO. Skype - chrissanderson ::: TEL 1-720-336-1784 ::: www.amwso.net
    Join our affiliate programs :Vaper Empire, Iolo, Art of Tea, or See ALL our Programs here

  10. #10
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris - AMWSO View Post
    I find the best solution to this is to use a network for the affiliate tracking and then use the inhouse affiliate program to track sales for other channels. That way there is no overwrite between affiliates and other channels, plus the site owner gets more info on the multiple touch points involved in the sales cycle, which can be very enlightening and educational.
    And make no mistake..IT Is NEVER OK to overwrite affiliate cookies with cookies from internal marketing channels. It's a nullification of your return days as well as a violation of trust. If you feel that there's justification to do this, then you MUST inform affiliates via your TOS about this practice so that they can make an informed decision regarding your program. Anything less is fraud.

    -rematt
    "I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant." - Richard Nixon

  11. #11
    Affiliate Manager DrMarie's Avatar
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    Can you guys explain more on what it means to overwrite affiliate cookies? I want to be sure I am not doing this!

  12. #12
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    In a nutshell, it's a tactic that unscrupulous merchants use to avoid paying affiliate commissions. There are a variety of ways that it can be accomplished but a discussion of how isn't as important as a discussion of whether it is fair or legitimate. As far as most of the networks go, it doesn't appear that it would be allowed by their TOS, although there are merchants that utilize this tactic. It would also appear that most affiliates were not aware that this practice is as common as one merchant claims, and I find it hard to believe that any affiliate would be in favor of anything that diverts our commissions. I'm of the belief that only a LEGITIMATE AFFILIATE can overwrite another affiliate cookie. But that's just my opinion. There are merchants that disagree, and all I ask of them is that they are very clear about their use of these tactics in their TOS so that I know to avoid their programs.

    You can find more information in the thread that Michael noted above: Merchants Overwriting Cookies with Internal Emails or this longer thread from a a few months ago: Is overwriting of affiliate cookies by non-affiliate channels a legitimate tactic?

    As a new merchant contemplating an affiliate program, you should understand that due to a lack of transparency, much of affiliate marketing is based on trust. There are so many ways that merchants can (and do) cheat affiliates out of legitimate commissions that it requires our trust of your program, your affiliate manager and you as a merchant in order to motivate us to spend our time and money to promote your program. Once a merchant violates that trust they'll have a hard time maintaining relationships with affiliates.

    You may have noticed a couple of posters recommended that you utilize a network like Sharasale. One of the main reasons is that many of us are wary of independent programs. Network act a a trusted third party (to an extent) and they give us a somewhat limited means of keeping merchants honest. Limited, but more than we have with an independent program.

    I could write a 30 page post about all of the things that merchants can do to cheat affiliates out of commissions, but that wouldn't't be productive. I also get the impression that you're looking for the right way to run a program so you really wouldn' be interested in these tactics. Instead I'll recommend that you spend some time in the Merchnats Best Practices Forum and pay special attention to the Consolidated List of Affiliate Friendly Policies. When in doubt about a particular tactic or method don't hesitate to ask. I'm sure you've noticed that there is no shortage of individuals that are very passionate about affiliate marketing here and certainly no shortage of opinions.

    Good luck with your program and welcome to ABW. I hope you stay for a while.

    -rematt
    "I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant." - Richard Nixon

  13. #13
    Affiliate Manager qualityunit's Avatar
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    Marie, because you have PAP, I would like to explain how it works internally in PAP.
    First of all, every visitor has unique visitorId, which is stored in browser cookie, flash cookie, etc... simply we store on visitor's computer a sign ...

    Later in PAP we track who when clicked where, etc.

    Cookie overwriting was in old fashioned affiliate tracking softwares a way how to define who will receive commissions (First or last affiliate referring visitor).
    In PAP it is different, because we don't overwrite the cookie directly in visitor's browser, we calculate all internally following your definition. You can even define, that each affiliate will get commission with "Split Commission" feature (this is what I like). I think, that cookie overwriting is bad in general, not just as overwriting by virtual affiliates - simply it was used as resolution of limitations of old affiliate softwares to assign commissions to last affiliate...


    I totally agree, that affiliate program should be implemented so, that real affiliates will not be cheated by any hidden internal affiliate accounts... your affiliates need to trust you, every cheating will be identified later or sooner. With PAP it is possible to setup it also without integration with next affiliate network - I don't think it is necessary. If you need separated tracking, you can install next PAP, but as I said, it is possible also with one PAP.
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Arial]Viktor Zeman[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [B][URL=http://www.qualityunit.com/]Quality Unit [/URL][/B] Founder and [B][URL=http://www.qualityunit.com/postaffiliatepro/]Post Affiliate Pro[/URL][/B] developer

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