Link Cloaking and Link Tracking - Are They The Same

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					                                                     Presented by Daniel Toriola


     Online marketing involves some ways of earning income such as joining affiliate marketing programs, article
      marketing and publishing, webpage optimization services, and other Internet marketing-related services.
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                                               What Do Affiliate Tracking Services Do?
                                                                     By Clay Mabbitt



    What Do Affiliate Tracking Services Do? by Clay Mabbitt


Some affiliate programs design their own internal software to track affiliate referrals, calculate
commissions, and process payments. It is far more common, though, for programs to outsource these
functions to an affiliate tracking company. Knowing which affiliate tracking company a program uses
allows you to quickly assess how many of the aspects of their affiliate program will operate. What
follows are some of the aspects of an affiliate program that are largely influenced by the affiliate
tracking company used.

Targeted linking

Also known as “deep linking”, targeted linking is the practice of allowing affiliates to direct traffic to
whichever page on the affiliate programs site best fits their pre-selling strategy. The alternative to
targeted linking is to direct all referred traffic to the home page of the site. Programs that offer targeted
linking often, though not always, have much higher conversion rates.

Tiered commissions

Some programs will reward affiliates for bringing new affiliates into the program. While this reward can
take many forms, it is usually a small percentage of what the new affiliates earn. In such programs,
there are often a handful of affiliates who are very successful recruiting and earn a steady income even
though they make few direct sales. Some affiliate tracking companies do not have the capacity to offer
tiered commissions, although most do and leave the choice up to the individual program manager.

Tracking return customers

Most purchases on the internet do not occur the first time a visitor comes to a page. Often they will
bookmark the page and return to the site hours, weeks, or sometimes months later to purchase. Using
a combination of cookies, IP tracking, and domain referral tracking; affiliates can still receive
commissions on customers that do not make immediate purchases. While the exact window of
customer action may vary from program to program, most affiliate tracking companies use the same
tracking methods (cookies or IP tracking) across all of their programs.

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                                    Presented by Daniel Toriola


Traffic and Sales Reporting

A practice so common as to be considered standard, affiliate tracking companies allow affiliates to log
on and review the traffic and sales that they have generated over certain date periods. Some
companies allow affiliates to create campaigns by which they can track the effectiveness of different
marketing methods. The type of reporting available tends to be consistent across all affiliate programs
a company tracks.

Payment Frequency

The industry standard is to send commission payments on a monthly basis when an affiliate’s earnings
reach a certain minimum balance. Some programs send checks more or less frequently. On rare
occasions a company will not send checks automatically, instead requiring that affiliates log on and
request a payment. This is often a sign of an untrustworthy company trying to avoid paying all
commissions due. Anything other than automatic payment is uncommon.

Network of Programs

Some tracking companies cater to affiliates who wish to participate in multiple programs. An affiliate
who is part of their network can examine and join other programs they track, pending the approval of
each program manager.

Training

Any program that leaves training of affiliates solely in the hands of their tracking company is doing their
affiliates a great disservice, but the tracking company can help. Kowabunga, for example, provides
affiliates with a database of affiliate marketing articles, FAQs, and a quick start guide. A tracking
company can’t provide training for a specific product or service, but they can educate affiliates on the
general aspects of the industry.



 Clay Mabbitt writes articles about online income opportunities. He is the founder of a community of
Internet entrepreneurs sharing knowledge and experience at http://www.affiliatescreen.com




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                                        Presented by Daniel Toriola


                               Link Cloaking And Link Tracking - Are They The Same?
                                             By Christopher Stigson



? Link cloaking and link tracking are often confused with each other. Though both are useful tools to
maximize your profits from affiliate marketing, yet they are two entirely different things.

Link Tracking

Link tracking, as the name suggests, is mainly about tracking the activity of the user who clicks on the
link. That is the reason why it is sometimes also referred to as ad tracking. The link tracking script or
software program allows you to track whether the user clicking on the link is making the purchase or
not. The advanced programs will also let you know complete detail about that user, such as the IP
address, the geographical location, and other such things. This type of information will assist you in
improving your strategies to increase your profits.

Link Cloaking

Affiliate link cloaking also helps to maximize your earning, but in a different way. It is in fact more about
protecting your earning than increasing the same. As the term suggests, it is a process to cloak the link
so that the users do not realize that they are actually clicking on an affiliate link. If the link is not
cloaked, a user can easily recognize that it is an affiliate link. When they click on the link, they can see
in the address bar that they have been redirected to a different website. What is more, if the user has a
little of technical know-how, he/she can also go to the source code and see your affiliate links.

Nobody can ever resist the temptation to earn easy money online, especially when the opportunity is
right there. For example, if you are a Clickbank affiliate and the user is also an affiliate from the same
network, he/she will simply replace your affiliate ID with his/her own ID. When they make the purchase
this way, the commission goes into their account rather than yours. This is more technically and
commonly referred to as link hijacking.

You can protect your income by choosing to clock your affiliate links. When a link is cloaked
thoroughly, it can never be hijacked. However, it entirely depends upon which type of link cloaking
technique you are using. If you are trying to save some bucks by using the free scripts, you are
probably still at risk. If you are serious about your affiliate marketing venture, you should always use a
paid link cloaking software program from a reputed company.



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Related eBooks:

Link Cloaking And Link Tracking - Are They The Same?
Make Sure Affiliate Programs Pay for Every Sale
What Is Link Cloaking - And Why Should I Care?
What Is An Affiliate Network
7 Ways To Identify Affiliate Program Scams

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