idimension-affiliate-trackingWhite Cloud manufactures & distributes electronic cigarettes worldwide from their Tarpon Springs, Florida facility – and sells everything from their web site.

Due to the regulatory environment surrounding their products, White Cloud can not engage in standard search network advertising (e.g., ads on search results).  This makes other forms of online advertising & product promotion, especially affiliate marketing, even more important to their business model.

Tracking orders with affiliate network tracking pixels

Affiliates register to sell White Cloud products through networks like “CJ Affiliate” (formerly Commission Junction).   A special link on the affiliate web site gets routed through the affiliate network provider’s system, and then on to the White Cloud web site.  Affiliates get commissions for any referred visitors that make purchases.  White Cloud fires the affiliate network tracking pixel for that specific affiliate on their order success page in such scenarios so the affiliate network can report the commission to the affiliate.  Firing these tracking pixels correctly is required to remain in good standing with the affiliate network.

Attributing orders to affiliates is simple when there is only one affiliate program referring visitors to the site.  But, when you introduce multiple affiliate programs – attribution becomes tricky, and there is a significant possibility of firing multiple affiliate network tracking pixels on the order success page.  This means paying more than one commission for an order – which can quickly erode profits. White Cloud tasked iDimension to employ a tag management solution that would only fire one affiliate network tracking pixel per order, based on specific attribution rules.

iDimension employed a tag management solution where affiliates only get commissions for orders for a new referred visitor for up to 10 days after the first visit.  So – if a visitor is referred to the site from two different affiliate web sites, if the visitor is new and makes an order within 10 days, the first affiliate that referred the visitor gets the commission.  The tag management solution enforces these rules, and fires only one affiliate network tracking pixel per order (or not at all if more than 10 days past the first visit).

The result was an exponential increase in profitability for the overall affiliate revenue source, and confidence to add even more affiliate networks to the White Cloud marketing mix.  Google Analytics is used to confirm affiliate revenue attribution, and monitor this revenue source not only relative to prevention of commission deduplication – but also to measure return on investment and make informed decisions about budgeting for this program going forward.