Testing Geo-Targeted Affiliate Offers

I need to test out landing pages and the conversion process, but how do I test an offer if I’m not located in the country that is geo-targeting?

If you work with affiliates in other countries you may have encountered this question already. It is important for affiliates to see the user experience to understand how they will most effectively convert their users, and the solution for testing geo offers varies depending on your offer.

Geo-Targeting Your Affiliate Links

If you are using your affiliate tracking software to geo-target the offer, and you are only geo-targeting for the purpose of working with affiliates, then there is usually something you can append to the URL to test the offer.  For example, if you are using the geo-targeting feature in HasOffers to allow or disallow traffic from specific countries, then your affiliates can simply append “testoffer” to their affiliate link, using the source variable (&source=testoffer). Appending this identifier lets the HasOffers ad server know that this is only a test click and allows the redirect to occur, revealing the landing page to an affiliate.

The tracking link below is for Google UK and is targeted to the United Kingdom only. By appending source=testoffer to this link, you will be redirected to the actually offer landing page for Google UK.

Ex. http://demo.go2jump.org/aff_c?offer_id=688&aff_id=1184&source=testoffer

Without appending source=testoffer, you will be redirected to an offer that matches your location.

Ex. http://demo.go2jump.org/aff_c?offer_id=688&aff_id=1184

Its not recommended to use these testing parameters in offer URLs.

Geo-Targeted Landing Pages

If you are geo-targeting landing pages for all users, say for example you are a daily deal site that needs to make sure people in Seattle only see offers for Seattle, then it obviously won’t matter what you append to the affiliate link. Even if the affiliate link follows the proper redirect, the page will not display because of your own internal geo-targeting.

For affiliates to view these offers, they will need some sort of IP proxy tool, and there happen to be some great ones out there already.

GeoSurf

This probably one of the simpler solutions for viewing webpages as they appear in other countries. GeoSurf has a toolbar for Firefox and IE for your affiliates to install that lets them select the country they wish to view from and then navigate to any webpage they choose. They’ve got over 80 global gateways, and you can even view sites as they appear on various devices such as iPhones, iPad, and Android. They have several pricing models for your affiliates that are all very reasonable and vary based on how many private proxy locations you get and the amount of volume you do. They even have an API if you’d like to build GeoSurf into your affiliate program and provide it as a service. Read an Interview with GeoSurf

GeoEdge

Another toolbar solution is GeoEdge. There pricing is structured a little different from GeoSurf in that they only have two editions, but one edition is completely free. However, the free version is limited to 8 locations. They also have a toolbar for Firefox toolbar as well as a multi platform Chrome toolbar.

Obviously you don’t want testing and viewing offers to keep you from developing valued affiliate relationships around the globe. Hopefully this post helped you out, so the next time an affiliate bugs you about viewing your offer from a different geo-location you’ll say “No Problem!”

Peter Hamilton
https://plus.google.com/109719881229306639144?rel=author

Partner and CEO at HasOffers. Peter joined HasOffers before the company launched their first product in 2009. With more than six years of experience in online marketing, Peter has a skilled knowledge of SEO, Display Advertising, PPC, CRO, Retargeting, Social Ads, Social Marketing, PR, Email Marketing, and Usability. Follow @peterhamilton

  • http://www.ipyxel.com/ iPyxel Creations

    Are GeoSurf and GeoEdge essentially shared proxies?  Or do they constantly rotate IPs?

    • Amnon

      Hi,
      Generally, GeoEdge is a shared proxy service – we have high grade servers and work very hard to keep our IPs open and ‘legit’ to 3rd party providers.  We also have tailored packages with pools of IPs, if needed. Please feel free to contact us if you need further assistance or just sign up for a free trial.
      Thanks,
      Amnon
      GeoEdge
      amnon@geoedge.com

  • Chrislim2888

    you may also check the http://www.locaproxy.com, solution to test geo-targeted application

  • avinash980

    GeoEdge works awesome for me and i am happy sticking to the same product for years. Loving it :)

  • http://www.proxykey.com/ Vicky – Proxykey.com

    Sometimes an offer from U.S. advertisers is bigger and for publishers it’s what they are looking for. Usually, this choice is taken by affiliate from countries outside U.S. because they already know that U.S. customers are having high buying power. Using proxies will hide where they are from and able to penetrate the geo-targeting market.