Ad and Link Tracking is a must if you're serious about your business. What exactly should you track? Everything you do. If you don't track, how do you know how well or poorly something is performing? You don't – and it could cost you a lot of money.
Suppose you're just tracking a link or ad. If you're getting clicks and it's performing reasonably well. Then you have two options. Leave it as is or try to tweak it to perform even better. If you're not getting the results you expected, why keep the ad up?
Now, suppose you're using Google Ad Words or Facebook ads and are paying for that ad? You can lose hundreds or even thousands of dollars if you don't know how the ad is performing. You need to track every click and action performed. You need to know exactly what's going on.
Look for software that has the ability to track, but can also cloak your affiliate links. This is important because link thieves can actually steal your money..Oh Yes, there are people that will strip out your affiliate ID from the link and take credit for your hard work and the money that should be yours.
Mouse over any link I've put in on this blog (not the comments, recent posts and the like – that's supplied by WordPress) and you'll see what I mean. All you'll see is "nobetterjob.com /adtrackz/ whatever I/m tracking". You can also learn a lot just by mousing over any links in the emails you receive or on websites you visit. Try it out!
So, you should be tracking everything you do. Every advertisement, affiliate link everything. Not only will you know whats performing well – especially if you're paying for the ads, but you should also have the ability to cloak your affiliate links so no one is stealing from you. Some of these metrics are pretty cool too; you can see where your traffic is coming from and many other variables.
If you pay to play, you'll obviously get more bells and whistles. If you're on a budget, try Leads Leap. It's free and you can cloak links, but you can also put in your own ads and earn credits to get them shown.