Parallel tracking in Google Ads

This information applies only to affiliates who use Google Ads to link directly to an advertiser’s site. This does not apply to affiliates who use Google Ads to link to their own affiliate sites.  

Parallel tracking is a Google Ads (previously Adwords) feature that aims to increase loading time speeds for landing pages. Parallel Tracking is mandatory for all Google Ads accounts since October 30, 2018.

With parallel tracking, the user is sent directly to the intended landing page, while click tracking is performed in the background by a function called sendBeacon. This means that certain tracking parameters normally sent to the advertiser website by redirecting the user via the Adtraction tracking server will not be available.

This does not affect Adtraction’s legacy cookie tracking. However, for advertisers using first-party tracking or server-to-server tracking a simple update by affiliates in their Google Ads account is required:

  1. The Final URL for the ad (final URL or final URL suffix field) must be appended with a static identifier cn=at_gd as well as two instances of Google’s unique click identifier; cv={gclid} and at_gd={gclid}. Example:{gclid}&at_gd={gclid}

  2. The Adtraction tracking link (tracking template field) must have gb=1 appended to it to indicate parallel tracking. It also needs to carry the parameter at_gd={gclid} which holds Google’s unique click identifier. Example:{gclid}

Information about which tracking solution an advertiser has implemented is available on each advertiser’s program page in your Adtraction account.

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