Digital Marketing

What affiliate marketers have missed about Google Analytics

30-second abstract:

  • Affiliate entrepreneurs can use Google Analytics to do the next – Google Occasion Monitoring to watch on-site engagements, Google Dashboards for analyzing consumer habits, and construct customized Audiences for enhancing viewers retargeting.
  • As an affiliate marketer, Google Analytics doesn’t offer you off-site monitoring, so you may’t see what actions an individual performs on a service provider web site after leaving your web site.
  • With server-side monitoring and Google Analytics, you may monitor a whole affiliate funnel by means of one platform. Benefits embody the flexibility to create lookalike audiences based mostly on individuals who made a purchase order, run improved retargeting campaigns, and export lookalike information throughout a number of advert platforms.

Google Analytics is a strong instrument that gives invaluable insights for anybody managing an internet site. On this article, I’ll talk about methods to use Google Analytics on your affiliate internet marketing campaigns. I’ll then present you methods to use third-party instruments to offer you further insights to generate extra income out of your current visitors and make higher use of your advert price range.

How entrepreneurs presently use Google Analytics for affiliate monitoring

If you’re utilizing Pay Per Click on (PPC) advertisements as your main buyer acquisition channel, your revenue margins are straight tied to advert prices. Any edge you achieve that improves your ROAS will offer you a aggressive benefit within the advert public sale.

There are three main levers of a PPC marketing campaign, the advert copy, the viewers focusing on, and the touchdown web page expertise. The insights you achieve by means of Google Analytics will help you enhance viewers focusing on and the touchdown web page expertise.

PPC and how marketers use Google Analytics for tracking affiliate marketing

Google Occasion Monitoring lets you observe outbound clicks on affiliate hyperlinks. As soon as arrange, the dashboard is accessible by means of Conduct > Occasions. If the common conversion price for a product, you may assign every click on a price by organising Aim Values.

Google Analytics - Event tracking

You then have to make modifications to the GA monitoring code or add a particular configuration to your GTM tag. This text covers event tracking in additional element.

With Google Occasion Monitoring, you may monitor your assumed revenue margins for a marketing campaign by means of Google Analytics. After all, these figures are removed from correct.

When applied successfully, Aim Values offer you a theoretical mannequin for predicting your marketing campaign’s profitability. Nevertheless, it doesn’t replicate your precise gross sales. To entry this information, it’s essential to log in to your affiliate dashboard, examine the gross sales, and see if the anticipated revenue margins align with the actual outcomes. Furthermore, affiliate platforms present differing ranges of insights. Which means you would possibly solely get a “gross sale worth” that covers gross sales from all visitors, versus visitors from one web site.

The second factor most affiliate entrepreneurs will do is assessment the knowledge offered by means of Google Analytics dashboards to watch what persons are doing on their touchdown pages. For instance, you would possibly monitor how far down a web page folks scroll, how a lot time they spend on the web page, the bounce price, and extra. You can too see the variety of affiliate hyperlink outbound clicks.

You’ll be able to run A/B tests and different experiments to examine how your actions affect the CTR to affiliate hyperlinks. You’ll be able to modify the place of affiliate hyperlinks and the location of the merchandise you’re selling to enhance CTR.

Insights gained from Google Analytics offer you important information to check your assumptions. You should utilize this information to enhance the touchdown web page expertise and enhance your CTR.

Any enhancements you make to the touchdown web page expertise can and will enhance your ROAS.

The ultimate factor you are able to do is use Google Analytics to enhance your preliminary focusing on. If you’re monitoring who clicked on the affiliate hyperlink, you may create a refined lookalike viewers for Google AdWords by means of Google Analytics. The next information discusses audience targeting and Similar Audiences.

Any enchancment to your focusing on provides you with an edge within the advert public sale.

What are the constraints of Google Analytics for affiliate monitoring?

Google Analytics is a strong instrument for monitoring the on-site actions of your guests. As a enterprise proprietor that controls a whole funnel, you may place your Google Analytics tag throughout your web site, together with the checkout web page the place the transaction truly takes place. Due to this fact, Google Analytics offers you with all the information you would possibly conceivably want to watch and optimize a funnel.

Quite than counting on assumed transaction values, you may monitor all the pieces by means of a number of Google Analytics dashboards. Sadly, as an affiliate marketer, since you may’t place your GA tag on the service provider “thanks” web page, Google Analytics fails to offer you these insights. You’re compelled to leap between your affiliate packages, the advertisements platform, and Google Analytics to watch how your PPC campaigns are performing. 

I mentioned why you couldn’t use GA Occasion Monitoring for the ultimate levels of an affiliate funnel. It’s an inconvenience that stops the actual attribution of transactions to an advert click on. 

This challenge impacts your advertising and marketing at two essential ranges, which is able to inevitably improve your Price Per Acquisition (CPA) and your capacity to automate your marketing campaign focusing on and optimization:

  1. Your whole viewers is mixed into basic “buckets,” which prevents you from displaying related advertisements based on the customers’ positions within the funnel.
  2. You’ll be able to’t construct lookalike audiences of your absolute best “prospects” since you don’t know who’s executed what. 

Whereas these two elements will undoubtedly scale back your revenue margins, they can even undermine your long-term enterprise goals and talent to compete on the advert public sale.

The ultimate inconvenience you’ll face is that you would be able to’t share customized audiences generated by means of Google Analytics throughout different advert platforms. To be truthful, Google Analytics was by no means designed to supply off-site analytics monitoring. Nevertheless, as an affiliate marketer, enriching your Google Analytics information with off-site conversion information can carry quite a lot of worth to your small business. I’ll talk about how off-site monitoring works within the subsequent part.

How offline conversion monitoring works

Offline conversion monitoring ties actions taken by customers in your web site and actions taken on websites or techniques outdoors the attain of the preliminary web site’s Google Analytics tag. The most typical strategies for implementing off-site analytics monitoring are by means of server-side monitoring API (also called postback monitoring) and handbook information / CSV add.

Out of the 2 choices, JavaScript monitoring is the only technique to implement. Nevertheless, strict browser privateness settings and AdBlocks have made this technique more and more unreliable. Furthermore, with JavaScript, there are additional restrictions like browser reminiscence, shortened cookie runtimes, and denial of entry to session storage.

Offline conversion tracking model

With server-side monitoring, distinctive click on ID information is handed throughout the outbound click on and is then despatched again through a server-side URL. The distinctive click on ID worth is the frequent denominator that hyperlinks a click on out of your web site to actions on a separate web site.

The info stream is managed by means of a postback URL. Within the following weblog submit, I share technical details about how postback URLs work and why they’re necessary.

The primary advantage of server aspect monitoring is that it’s not affected by advert blockers, ITP, ETP.

As an affiliate marketer, off-site advertising and marketing analytics offers you with an entire overview of your advertising and marketing funnel. You’ll be able to observe an off-site buy. With this information, you get the identical insights and benefits as a enterprise the place the top sale is made on their web site.

A further benefit of off-site monitoring is that you would be able to sync conversion information throughout a number of channels/ platforms after which use this information to create customized audiences. You’ll be able to, subsequently, take a look at your advertising and marketing funnel using cheaper visitors sources, then use the information to construct lookalike audiences for advertisements on Fb or Google, for instance.

Sadly, not all advert platforms help off-site monitoring. Google launched off-site monitoring in 2013. Bing Adverts launched the service in 2017, whereas social media platforms akin to Twitter and TikTok have but to supply an appropriate resolution for affiliate entrepreneurs.

Options for offsite monitoring

Offsite monitoring has a number of benefits for folks working within the affiliate internet marketing area of interest. That’s to not say that it’s not with out issues. You want quite a lot of technical information to arrange a system to attach information from a browser to the server-side.

Google Analytics offers an in depth API that allows builders to implement server-side monitoring. There are three main strategies for implementing off-site monitoring:

  1. Google Analytics API: Requires the very best stage of growth abilities. Nevertheless, the Google Analytics API offers programmers with the most effective potential for full server-side monitoring.
  2. Google Tag Supervisor: A Excessive stage of technical abilities. Google Tag Supervisor will solely permit you to successfully observe off-site actions when you can add Google Tags to the service provider’s web site.
  3. Third-Social gathering Affiliate Monitoring Software program: Plug & play options that join Google Analytics and different Adverts marketplaces (Bing, Fb, and different platforms).

As a result of ever-evolving information and analytics area, creating and maintaining with the fixed modifications requires a major funding of time and sources. Giant firms would possibly select to put money into a customized in-house resolution for off-site monitoring. Nevertheless, options that make the most of the Google Analytics API are too costly for many affiliate entrepreneurs.

Affiliate monitoring software program like, an organization that I based, offers a local server-side monitoring integration with Google Analytics, Bing Adverts, and different advert networks. It’s actually loads simpler than hiring a developer to create a customized resolution.

On steadiness, no matter your method, the constraints of offsite monitoring are outweighed by the sizable advantages. That’s, assuming you need to optimize your advertising and marketing funnel and improve your ROAS.

Integrating Google Analytics With Offsite Monitoring

Implementing Google Analytics with offsite monitoring software program like is simple. Google Analytics already offers the usual dashboards for monitoring customer stream throughout a web site from touchdown web page to conversion.

While you combine offsite monitoring, you’re, basically, simply gaining the identical kind of knowledge as somebody who manages a whole funnel throughout a single web site would see. The profit is that you just get entry to information you should utilize to enhance your ROAS.

Case Examine

Certainly one of our shoppers,, has six web sites within the pet care trade. Many of the visitors to their websites comes from natural search. They have been dealing with a knowledge problem that you could be be accustomed to; they discovered it obscure what merchandise have been changing and from which pages these conversions have been occurring.

As well as, PPC advertisements have been dearer than wanted. For instance, they have been working retargeting advertisements to individuals who had bought an affiliate product suggesting they make a purchase order. With higher information, they may enhance ROAS.

Utilizing, Cliverse may lastly see from what web page, and which hyperlink on a web page was producing the conversions. By means of analyzing the information, Cliverse was in a position to improve income by 30% because of web page optimization. As a result of they’ve the whole image, they’re now in a position to run paid media campaigns to their web site with full confidence.


Bridging the hole between your google analytics information and affiliate community conversions is the optimum approach to enhance your place on the advert public sale. With a full overview of your affiliate funnel, you achieve actionable insights on what triggers conversions and generates gross sales. It’s an important edge that may assist enhance your ROAS.

On this information, I confirmed you 3 ways to make use of Google Analytics as an affiliate marketer. You should utilize Google Occasion Monitoring to watch individuals who click on in your affiliate hyperlinks. With Aim Values arrange, you may observe your campaigns’ possible outcomes. Furthermore, you may run retargeting campaigns and create Customized Audiences for future advert campaigns.

By means of the Google Analytics dashboards, you may achieve insights into your web site guests’ actions. You should utilize these insights to validate the assumptions you make when working conversion optimization checks.

Whereas Google Analytics is a strong instrument, you may’t see what actions folks take once they depart your web site. Should you combine off-site monitoring, you get entry to this information. Most third-party instruments, such because the one we created, permit you to use Google Analytics to get an entire overview of your affiliate internet marketing funnel.

As an affiliate marketer, off-site monitoring mixed with Google Analytics offers you with invaluable insights that may assist you enhance your ROAS. Observe the steps shared on this information to see the outcomes for your self.

Laurent Malka is Co-founder of, a plug & play conversion monitoring platform. He could be discovered on Twitter @laurent_malka.

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