Rules are a powerful way to fill in attribution data for commissions you generated from before you began tracking with Affilimate's Smart Labels. It's also a good fit for programs running on platforms that don't support Smart Labels, like Amazon.
Here's how to set up your first Rule, plus examples of Rules you might find useful.
In this article:
- What are Rules?
- When should you use Rules over other types of attribution?
- How to create new Rules
- How to edit/delete a Rule
- What types of rules are possible?
- Regex rule examples
What are Rules?
Rules allow you to to tell Affilimate to apply either Page-level or Site-level attribution to any transaction that matches the Rule.
Here's a specific example of creating a rule, starting from the Rules V2 page:
There are two parts of the rule:
- Match: Which conditions must be true about a transaction for the rule to apply
- In this example: "Advertiser name is Discover Cars"
- Apply: Which attribution data (Page URL or Origin Domain) to apply to the transaction
- In this example: "Origin domain should be notanomadblog.com"
Once you've applied a rule, that data will be filled in next to transactions where the rule matched.
When should you use Rules
Rules should be used when:
- A platform does not support Smart Labels. Such as the case with Amazon.
- You are dealing with historical data that doesn't provide native site or page-level attribution data. But you know on which sites or pages you promote specific Products, Advertisers, or Platforms.
- You want to provide a fallback for transactions missing attribution data. For instance, situations where you didn't import a link or you promoted a link off-site without providing a custom SubID.
- You are only tracking one website. So, all commissions should be assigned to that single website no matter what.
Important things to know about Rules:
- Each commission can only have one Rule applied to it. If multiple Rules apply to a commission, the first one will take precedence.
- Rules do not override data from Smart Labels. If a commission is attributed to a specific page through a Smart Label, its Page or Origin Domain / Site will not be overridden, even if a Rule would otherwise match.
This makes Rules a good fallback, and a good option for taming historical data.
How to create new Rules
There are two ways to create Rules:
- From the Transactions report
- From the Rules settings
For simple SubID / Tracking Label rules, you can create them directly from the Transaction report (under Performance > Transactions):
For other types of rules, you'll create them from the Rules settings (under Performance > Settings > Rules):
How to delete a rule
There may be times when you need to edit or delete a rule, for example, if you accidentally attributed the incorrect URL or made some changes on your website. The best way to handle this is to delete the existing, incorrect label rule and create a new rule with the correct attribution set up.
You can delete a rule by clicking on the X on the right hand side, and then create the rule again using the correct details. Make sure to leave the box checked to unlink any existing commissions.
What types of rules are possible?
Here are the different ways you can use and apply rules:
- Based on different attributes
- Inclusive or exclusive matching
- Building compound groups
1. Based on different groups
You can match a Rule based on the following attributes of a transaction:
- SubID / Tracking Label
- Advertiser Name
- Product Name
- Product SKU / ID
- Platform / Network
2. Inclusive or exclusive matching
You can choose to match All or Any of the conditions in a Rule Group:
3. Build compound groups
You can create more complex rules by nesting rule groups. For example:
In this example, a rule will apply if:
- A transaction has SubID/Tracking Label of "a" AND Advertiser Name of "b" AND Product Name of "c", OR
- A transaction has Advertiser Name of "d" AND SubID/Tracking Label of "e"
This allows you to get very specific in terms of the attribution to apply, based on Transaction data.
Examples of Regex rules
The flavor of regex used in Affilimate's rules is POSIX basic regular expressions.
Here are a few examples of regexes:
- ^Something - matches any text that starts with "Something"
- Something$ - matches any text that ends with "Something"
- Some|Thing - matches any text that contains "some" or "thing"
For more examples, read Google's regular expression examples docs.