Differences Between Your Internal Analytics and Rakuten Reports Explained

Introduction

It is common for reports from different sources to have varying results as different systems count events differently. We provide reasons for these variations and possible solutions below.

Causes

Variations can be the result of:

Missing or Duplicate Tags
Analytics packages, such as Google Analytics or Adobe, typically rely on the existence of tags in the landing page URL which allow traffic and orders to be grouped into different categories. Missing tags or duplicate tags may interfere with this process.
Click Count Discrepancies
We consider clicks as valid if there is a relationship between you and the advertiser at the time of the click. If a user goes to your page and clicks through an advertiser's link three times in a row, Rakuten Advertising counts this as three clicks in our system. In some third-party analytics, however, those three clicks are only considered as one visit.
Return Days
A user who clicks through your link today but completes the purchase at a later date may not be recognized as a Rakuten Advertising-referred customer. This is because the purchase occurs outside of the advertiser’s return days window. You can view an advertiser’s return days by running a Consolidated Advertiser Report or accessing an offer’s full details in the dashboard.

Solutions

If there are differences between your internal analytics and our reports, we recommend you take the following steps:

  1. Familiarize yourself with the attribution models of the platforms you are comparing and understand their key differences.
  2. Compare reports for a limited period, such as one or two days.
  3. Check for clicks and orders that we have not recorded. Investigate the reason why those were not included in Rakuten reports. We provide guidance on how to do so below.

Investigating Reports

If you recorded an order but cannot find it in Rakuten reports, add the Transaction Created on Date column to the reports. This column provides the click date. Compare this date to the date of purchase displayed in the Transaction Date column. A significant gap could indicate that you are not accounting for return visits within the attribution window.

If you find that some orders tagged as affiliate orders do not show up at all in the Rakuten platform, check that:

  • Correct tracking was appended to the links for us to track the sale.
  • The order was considered non-commissionable.
  • You did not use third-party parameters in your links. These parameters are stripped during the redirect, which may cause issues. The only custom parameters we allow are u1 and u5.

Next Steps

After comparing the data, you should have a general understanding of the differences between your reporting and Rakuten Advertising reports. Use this analysis to compare the reports going forward.

If you find issues with how orders are reported, contact Customer Support.

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