Coding For Online Success

Use Live HTTP Headers to verify your EPN links are working


I’ve been seeing a lot of complaining, specifically on the EPN forum about impressions and clicks not tracking. Lots of whining and basically ill feelings directed towards eBay’s programmers. Being a programmer, I feel for them. I do however agree with some of the issues, specifically the lack of validation of input fields. This lack of validation is allowing users to input incorrect data for their widgets. Though, I feel for the people that are missing clicks and impressions because of this… I have to say, “Why don’t you inspect your links after you’ve built them?????” It’s really easy to double check your work and verify that it looks correct.

One tool that’s been essential for me is Live HTTP Headers plugin for FireFox. Basically, it’s a packet sniffer for your browser. It will display the requests and responses between the browser and the server. This is really useful if you mask your links and want to ensure that they’re going to the right place AND passing the correct data.

Just turn this plugin on and start clicking your Editor Kits and direct links. Look for GET /rover/ requests, make sure your campid is NOT a word, and is a 10 digit numeric value, compare that value with your campaign list at EPN. Make sure you see customid and toolid variables WITH values next to them. Simple tests with this should ensure that the link is built correct. Next make a note of when you clicked this link, and watch for it in your reports or dashboard.

Paying attention and being thorough with your link work will go a long long way. I’ve been seeing lots of invalid campids out there (ie: campid=JOHN SMITH). If you’re campid is bad, you won’t track and you won’t make any commissions on them.

Also, pay attention to your CJ account, and watch clicks in there. If you see clicks for eBay on sites you converted, that means you’ve missed a link somewhere.

Hope this helps!

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