Whilst the affiliate channel typically represents up to 30% of your overall traffic, paid search is rapidly becoming a growing portion of most marketing strategies. With this channel growing in popularity, it’s paramount to spend wisely and measure the impact of your efforts.

Tracking your PPC campaigns is integral to analysing the performance of each of your keywords, in terms of cost and conversion rate. Your metrics will let you know if you have to optimise your campaign further or drop it completely. After all, if placements are costing more than the revenue they generate, you are losing money on the campaign. This makes understanding the ROI of your PPC campaigns all the more important.

If PPC is part of your marketing mix, then you should take advantage of the Affiliate Custom ID (ACID) tool available in the Income Access software package. Setting up your internal PPC campaigns in the system allows you to track how well specific keywords and phrases convert by relating them to specific sales data. For example, you can view how many clicks a certain keyword had, compared to the number of registrations, deposits, revenues, and other sales/transactions that it generated. These results can be viewed in detailed reports at the keyword level (ACID report), and drilled down even further to the player level (Account Report, with ACID column enabled), so that you can see the keyword that successfully acquired a player, and their specific activity in the program. You can find out if a player deposited, or how much revenue they generated.

Steps to enable the ACID feature in your program:

-You will need to have enough space in the varcharbtag field in your database for 100+ characters to use this feature.
-Confirm this with your technical team or software provider.
-Enable the functionality by going to Settings >> Menu settings >> Affiliate menu.
-Under marketing tools, tick the box for “PPC link creator”.
-Click on “Save settings” button found at either the top or the bottom of the page.
-Enable the ACID report (Affiliate menu/Admin menu)
-Enable the ACID column (Report display settings)

Affiliates who want to include ACID in their tracking and reports can do so in two ways:

-If they want to generate a simple link and append a keyword to it, they can use the PPC link creator by going to: Marketing tools >> PPC link creator.This feature generates a simple code with the ability to track specific keywords that you may be using in your search engine marketing (SEM). Whatever value replaces {keyword:default} in these links will appear in your PPC report (ACID) and Account Report, as shown in the screenshot below.

Alternately, affiliates can simply append &aid=[keyword] to their tracking URLs (at the end of the standard link). This is as simple as generating a tracker for a banner or text link from the affiliate programme as normal and then adding &aid= plus the value they want passed to the clickthrgh.asp value

Check out part 2 of this PPC series on Monday, when we explore how to view and measure your campaign results. If you have any questions, please comment below.