Redirectless tracking

Redirectless tracking is the most advanced and safest tracking method for affiliate marketers to run affiliate campaigns on Google Ads.

Redirectless tracking is a revolutionary method that enables marketers to track links and campaigns without any type of redirect URLs, while providing advanced analytics and improved performance. This article will delve into the concept of redirectless tracking, how it works, and how AnyTrack's features such as AutoTrack, AutoTag, and AutoScan enhance this method.

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The Tracker's Call To Action URL

Old school tracking methods used by software like Voluum, Redtrack and others require that you set a Call to Action URL on your landing pages https://subdomain.yourdomain.foo/click/1. Since this redirect is tied to the tracker's server and IP addresses, it is automatically identified as a CNAME cloaking and blocked by browsers (ex: Firefox, Safari, and other "privacy first" browsers), DNS, and other internet entities that stand between your website, the tracker and the visitor that cost you a few cents or $10...

CNAME cloaking is a technique used to mask the destination of a subdomain by pointing it to another domain or subdomain using a CNAME DNS record. This technique is often used for various purposes such as white-labeling services, affiliate tracking, and ad tech.

In the context of affiliate marketing or tracking solutions, CNAME cloaking can make third-party tracking domains appear as if they are subdomains of the original website. For example, instead of tracking.your-affiliate-network.com, you could use track.yourwebsite.com, which looks more trustworthy and brand-consistent to end users.

While CNAME cloaking can have legitimate uses, it is essential to understand that the practice has come under scrutiny for potential misuse, such as evading privacy measures and browser tracking prevention mechanisms. Therefore, it's crucial to use it responsibly and be aware of the implications for user privacy and compliance with regulations like GDPR or CCPA.

Some references:

AdGuard names 6,000+ web trackers that use CNAME chicanery

CNAME cloaking or how are we being tracked even with ad-blockers installed

AdGuard scanned the entire web in search of hidden trackers

What is Redirectless Tracking?

Redirectless tracking allows marketers to track and measure campaign traffic and website link clicks without adding any redirect URLs. In traditional tracking solutions, marketers are often required to add a click URL on their landing page to track the outbound click and send the visitor to the offer link. However, this method is often seen and interpreted as "Cloakers" by ad networks like Google Ads and Facebook Ads, leading to potential issues with compliance.

Redirectless tracking, on the other hand, eliminates the need for these redirect URLs, reducing click loss and improving conversion rates. It also enhances compliance with premium ad networks, which often disallow redirect URLs of any kind.

How Does Redirectless Tracking Work?

To understand how redirectless tracking works, let's follow the standard steps a visitor takes from an ad campaign or organic search visit to the merchant's website:

  1. The visitor clicks on an Ad and visits the marketer's landing page where affiliate offers are advertised.
  2. The visitor clicks on an offer link - such link is provided by affiliate network.
  3. The visitor reaches to the merchant's website.

How Tracker's CNAME cloaking affect click loss

User ActionTracker actionCName cloaking preventionResult
Clicks on Ad-CPC cost
Landing page visitJS tag Attempts to Set CookieBrowser Blocks sub domainCookie Not Set
Clicks on CTA URLAttempts to get cookie, redirects to tracker's server, return response.Browser Blocks click, router blocks click, dns blocks clickClick Loss

The campaign URL is the marketer's website where standard The UTM Parameters are appended to the final URL. When visitors click on the campaign URL, they are sent directly to the landing page, without going through a redirect URL. Upon landing on the landing page, all tracking parameters (UTM and custom) are captured by the AnyTrack TAG.

When visitors click on a product link published on the landing page, they are automatically sent to the product page, without going through a tracking system redirect. During the Click Event, the AnyTrack TAG will capture the click data, and send it to Google Analytics (and other pixels).

AnyTrack's Features for Redirectless Tracking

AnyTrack enhances the redirectless tracking method with its unique features: AutoTrack, AutoTag, and AutoScan.

AutoTrack

AutoTrack sends "onsite" tracked events to your analytics and pixels. This means that every action taken on your site, from link clicks to form submissions, is automatically tracked and sent to your analytics and pixels, providing you with a comprehensive view of your site's performance.

AutoTag

AutoTag appends subid and click_id to your product links, according to each affiliate network requirement. This feature ensures that every click on your site can be accurately tracked back to its source, providing you with valuable insights into which of your marketing efforts are most effective.

AutoScan

If you use a redirect plugin such as ThirstyAffiliates, AnyTrack will AutoScan such links to discover to which affiliate network they belong so that they can be tracked and tagged. This feature ensures that all of your affiliate links are accurately tracked, regardless of how they are created or where they are placed on your site.

In conclusion, redirectless tracking is a powerful tool for affiliate marketers, and AnyTrack's unique features make it even more effective. By eliminating the need for redirect URLs, reducing click loss, and improving compliance with ad networks, redirectless tracking with AnyTrack can help you optimize your marketing efforts and achieve better results.