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Tracking Methods

SustainAffiliate implements advanced types of tracking to create accurate tracking results.

Weak tracking methods such as IP address tracking or browser cookie tracking are complementary to robust flash cookie tracking. SustainAffiliate always uses the strongest possible tracking methods.

Tracking Methods Order

Tracking methods are evaluated in the following order

  1. Browser cookie tracking – First-party cookie stored on the tracked domain
  2. HTML5 cookie tracking – Local storage created and accessible by the Web page
  3. Browser cookie tracking – Third-party cookie stored on the domain of SustainAffiliate
  4. Flash cookie tracking – Information stored from ads or videos to inform about a viewer’s return
  5. IP address tracking – Information gathered through the computer’s IP address

Browser cookie tracking

This tracking method, although not as strong as Flash Cookie tracking, is a very good complementary backup method in case Flash cookie tracking can’t be used (for example, happens in very rare cases when Flash player is not installed in the browser). This is the most commonly used tracking method in other affiliate software, that doesn’t support Flash cookie tracking. This is one of the biggest reasons that clients choose SustainAffiliate over other affiliate tracking software. SustainAffiliate is much more accurate with Flash cookie tracking.

Disadvantages of browser cookies

The two biggest disadvantages are

  • Users can easily delete cookies in the browser user interface, so any clicks or more importantly sales will not be tracked correctly
  • Cookies registered in one browser will not work in another browser on the same computer (for example, between Chrome, Internet Explorer, Opera, Safari, Firefox and others).

Tracking referrals by IP

This method is only used when the browser cookies can’t be found, as well as when no flash player is installed in the browser. This happens rarely. During the sale tracking process, SustainAffiliate searches for the last known click from the visitor’s IP. If we find it, then the Content Creator and Campaign id from this click is used, and sales commission can be created.

Extended tracking methods

Besides the two standard tracking methods (IP tracking and browser cookies) and the advanced tracking methods (Flash cookies), there are other possibilities for how to track Content Creators. SustainAffiliate has a number of extended tracking methods.

Impression tracking

Clients find the reporting of impressions useful. An impression is an action when a banner was seen by a potential customer, but not clicked. SustainAffiliate gives you an option to see these statistics per each banner/link.

Why is it useful? Imagine you have a Content Creator who has thousands of visits per day but based on impression statistics, you can see that just a few people really clicked your ad. With this info you can act – you can find out why customers don‘t click (wrongly placed banner at the website, irrelevant product promotion, banner not interesting enough). You can easily use the customer potential from that website if you point it out correctly and turn traffic into sales. Impression tracking will help you with it!

Lifetime commissions

The most reliable way to track and reward repeat customers introduced by a Content Creator is through the lifetime commissions feature. When a Content Creator refers a visitor to your website and the customer registers or purchases something, SustainAffiliate will tie this customer with the Content Creator internally. Next time when the customer shops with you, they do not even have to use the same computer, they can log in from a completely different country but the commission will still be tracked correctly. It is up to you what data will be used to tie Content Creator with the customer – email, or some unique customer ID from the shop you use.


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