This Pretty Link Lite tutorial will show you a better method, that you probably haven’t seen yet, of using the free WordPress plugin. There are many other tutorials on the link tracking tool but I’m going to show you how to use the free version of Pretty Link to track your affiliate links on various sites and social networks. Track how many times your affiliate links are clicked AND know where they were clicked.
A Side Note
Real quick, for those don’t already know it, for several years I owned an all-paid ad tracking membership site. This was a successful membership site because marketers know the value of link tracking. As bloggers, at least those of you that have monetized, link tracking should be something you are paying attention to. The following method of link tracking is very basic and doesn’t give you many details but it’s super easy to use and reliable.
What Does Pretty Link Lite Do?
The Pretty Link plugin takes the ugly and obvious affiliate links and cleans them up by turning them into more friendly looking URLs. Turn this
The links you setup in your plugin (in your WordPress dashboard after it’s installed) will redirect to the destination URL (Target URL). Basically, both URLs are visited, it’s just started with your custom link setup in Pretty Link.
Pretty Link Tracking
We can track the number of clicks, along with the IP Address, of the various clicks on the links we setup in the plugin. This can shed some light on the effectiveness of your campaigns, even social media (keep reading).
Last night, I setup a very basic “convenience link” to use for Facebook. It’s not an affiliate link but it’s nice to know if people are clicking over to your social networks, and from where (keep reading). So I setup
Pretty straight forward, right? Now I have a super easy way to send people over to our Facebook page and even keep track of how many people have clicked the link.
The Power Of Knowledge
Here’s the amazing part of knowing how many clicks you are getting, aside from the obvious of knowing which campaigns are working the best. I sent a single tweet using that pretty link at 11:10 PM last night (Saturday). So it’s Saturday night and there’s not a lot going on. The tweet didn’t seem to get any attention; no retweets, favorites or replies. A waist of time, right? Well, let’s look:
Have you seen perfection on Facebook yet? http://t.co/k6Ni1Nrxbf
— Brian D. Hawkins (@HotBlogTips) September 8, 2013
Within minutes, we had 32 clicks on that link. That’s the power of Twitter but it’s also the power of knowing; without some sort of link tracking, we might assume our tweet was completely ignored. That doesn’t necessarily mean it will turn into a sale, but how many people have given up because they thought no one noticed a tweet, update, post or email?
The Advanced Method – Knowing Where The Link Was Clicked
So now for the part where I show you how to know where the links are being clicked. Don’t worry, “advanced” doesn’t mean it’s difficult; anyone can do this within minutes.
So let’s go back to my Genesis Framework affiliate link. Rather than just using the above example for every link I place online, we set one up for every place we’re going to use it.
I like to use a simple “code” in the tracking link that allows me to see where I used it. Here’s an example of my code but you can use whatever works best for you:
- e = email
- f = Facebook
- g = Google Plus
- p = Pinterest
- t = Twitter
How To Setup Your Affiliate Link “Custom Code”:
So rather than using
http://hotblogtips.com/genesis everywhere, I setup what looks like a directory:
http://hotblogtips.com/t/genesis for links to be used on Twitter
http://hotblogtips.com/f/genesis for links to be used on Facebook
You get the point; every website and social network gets their own Pretty Link and I get to see where I’m getting clicks.
More Pretty Link Tips On The Video
It doesn’t get any easier; log into your WordPress dashboard, click plugins in the left column, click on “add new” and search “Pretty Link Lite“. Install, activate and setup your links. It’s free, it’s easy and you will have a better understanding of what campaigns are generating clicks, and what isn’t.
Over To You, My Fellow Blogger
There you go, simple as pie yet I haven’t seen anyone else explain this. I hope it helps, be sure to watch the video and we’d love your input in the comments below. We’re now using a commenting system that allows you to comment via the traditional WordPress platform, Facebook or Google Plus – just click the appropriate tab.