Testing Affiliate Links

Introduction

It is important to ensure your links are working correctly. Here are some tips to help you check that your affiliate links are displaying properly and working to track clicks and sales. For the best results make sure you are testing from a browser with cookies enabled. There should be no plugins that could interfere with tracking and no plugins or apps from other affiliates. 

Testing Ad Display

  1. Copy and paste the link code into a text editor like Notepad.
  2. Save this as a .html file on your computer.
  3. Locate the file you saved and open it.
  4. The file should open in your default browser. 

Testing On Your Site

  1. Use the copied link code and paste it onto your site.
    • The ad should display as in the previous test for Ad Display.
  2. Hover your mouse pointer over the ad on your site to see the URL. You should see click.linksynergy.com and your encrypted ID in the URL string.
    • Your encrypted ID is the 11-character alphanumeric code unique to you. This can be found in your linking code, following id= and before id=. Also known as affiliate ID or tracking ID, this is not your username or SID.
  3. Click the banner or link on your site, and you should be taken to the correct landing page.
    • If the advertiser uses URL masking, download a browser extension that captures redirects. For Chrome, try Redirect Path; it will determine the redirect part from click to a landing page.

Testing Tracking

Once you have clicked on the ad on your site, follow the steps above. You can use reporting to confirm your click has been counted. In your dashboard, go to Reports then Performance, and from the report drop-down select:

    • Sales and Activity Report: This report shows your overall performance. Select a date range that includes when your click was made. If you wish to, narrow the results filter by advertiser.
    • Link Type Report: This report will display the impressions, clicks, click-through rate, and orders for each type of link, such as text, banner, product links, and others. 

Make a test order from your affiliate link on the advertiser's site or get a reported order ID from a customer. Make a note of this order ID.

  • When making a purchase, use u1= test or another value so a record of a successful click can be ascertained.

Run an Individual Item Report from the Performance Reports section of your publisher dashboard. This report breaks down activity by order ID, you should see your test item listed.

Common Problems

Click the + for more information:

Incorrect copy and paste
Even deleting one character can compromise our ability to track accurately.
Front-page character insertion
The web page editor adds amp; to every & in the Rakuten Affiliate code. This is because the character & is represented in HTML as '&'. To prevent this, paste the code in Notepad or a similar program first, then copy and paste the code in the HTML view of FrontPage, or do a search and replace and change occurrences of  & to ‘&’ in the link URLs.
Email alteration
Some email applications will alter the code within an email. To fix this issue, log in and generate the code directly from your Publisher Dashboard.

Further Help

If you tried the above steps and are still having issues with your links, contact Customer Support for additional assistance.

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