CPV Lab has been my tracking platform of choice ever since it launched. Despite the name, it can be used to track just about any type of traffic, not just CPV/PPV. I’ve used it for PPV, Facebook, Media Buys, and Mobile. Recently I had a campaign that required a Postback URL (also called Server-to-Server Pixel) for tracking instead of the usual pixel. It’s basically the same thing, but instead of placing a pixel on the landing page that gets loaded by the user’s browser, your affiliate network’s tracking system itself will tell your CPV Lab that a conversion has taken place. This is the primary tracking method used for Mobile campaigns, where pixels often don’t work. It is also much more reliable for tracking correctly (at least in my experience).
There is nothing in the CPV Lab interface that tells you how to do it. I had to go searching for the answer in the CPV Lab help desk, so I figured I’d share it with you. It’s actually quite simple.
First you will need your Image Pixel URL from your CPV Lab installation. Just go to the Edit Campaign window (any campaign), scroll down and copy the code in the box labeled “Image Pixel”. It should look like this:
<img src="http://yourtracker.com/adclick.php" width="1" height="1" border="0" />
Now copy just the URL part:
Next we are going to add “?subid=” on to the end of it, so we have this:
The final step is going to depend on what tracking platform your affiliate network is using. They each have a “token” that will make the system place the subid value into your link dynamically. Below I’ve listed the tokens for some of the most common tracking platforms.
To complete your Postback URL, just paste the correct token onto the end of your link. If you aren’t sure what platform your network uses, just ask your Affiliate Manager. Here’s an example using the Cake token:
That’s it! Now all you need to do is send your new Postback URL to your Affiliate Manager and tell them to place it for you. Be sure to tell them it’s a Postback URL, not an Image Pixel. Also, if you have the proper access, you can place it yourself in all of these platforms I’ve listed above. It depends from network to network and also offer to offer whether they allow you to place your own pixel.
Try it out, once you get it working you won’t go back to Image Pixels…