Affiliate FAQs


  1. How do I sign up for GMBill?
  2. What is my ‘Affiliate ID’?
  3. What is a GMBill ‘merchant’?
  4. What is a ‘subaccount’?
  5. What is an affiliate cookie?
  6. What is an ‘auth key’?
  7. What is an affiliate link?
  8. Where do I get my affiliate link?
  9. How do I do a test join?
  10. What do I need to know when I am switching from CCBill to GMBill?

 
 

How do I sign up for GMBill?

Generally, you will need to have already been accepted as an affiliate by a merchant running a GMBill affiliate program. You can find more info on registering as a GMBill affiliate here.

 

What is my ‘Affiliate ID’?

When you are registered as an affiliate with GMBill, you will be assigned a four-digit Affiliate ID (Aff ID). This number serves as a unique identifier for both GMBill, and the merchants you promote.

Your Aff ID will stay constant throughout your tenure as a GMBill affiliate, no matter how many different GMBill merchants you promote. Whenever you make contact with GMBill.com, or a GMBill merchant, please provide your four digit Aff ID for ease of identification.

 

What is a GMBill ‘merchant’?

An external website that offers paid goods or services, with payment processing provided by GMBill. In the context of affiliate marketing, they are the site to which you refer your traffic, and from which you receive revshare for referred sales.

GMBill handles the payment processing, affiliate payouts, and accreditation of your referrals. Matters particular to a merchant’s affiliate program (e.g. program policies, content allocation, applications), should be taken up with them directly.

 

What is a ‘subaccount’?

Subaccounts are the key to tracking traffic. A subaccount is a subdivision of your main affiliate account with GMBill, dedicated to a particular website, governed by rules defined by the auth key that created it. Each subaccount has a corresponding affiliate link, traffic that follows this affiliate link to the designated merchant site will be recorded under the statistics for the subaccount from which it was taken (including sales credited). You must have at least one subaccount for each merchant you promote, though you may have more according to your needs.

To make a new sub-account, log into your GMBill affiliate account, and click on the subaccount menu item. Select an appropriate auth key listed there, give it a name, and click save: a new sub account is generated. Note – If you use the wrong auth key to create a subaccount, you may be disqualified by the merchant for improper promotion. If you don’t know which auth key to use for your method of promotion, the best course of action is to contact the merchant you’re promoting.

 

What is an affiliate cookie?

An affiliate cookie is a unique cookie deposited into the browser files of all traffic you refer using your affiliate link. It instructs GMBill to credit any sales made on the designated merchant site from traffic you referred to the linked subaccount, (ultimately paying revshare based on the terms defined by the auth key governing that subaccount).

To be credited for referred sales, the correct and active affiliate cookie must be in place.

 

What is an ‘auth key’?

An auth key (short for ‘authentication key’), is a special code that is used to create and define GMBill Affiliate subaccounts. It will be allocated to you by the merchant you’re promoting. The following info is encoded within the auth key:

  • How much revshare you get for each sale made with any sub-account created from the auth key (be it a flat commission, or a percentage of the sale).
  • Whether or not rebills are paid.
  • The affiliate link destination URL options.
  • The website the subaccount is associated with.
  • Whether customers following the resulting affiliate links are entitled to use nominated coupons.

The precise powers and specifications of an auth key are set by the GMBill merchant site that created it, as per your agreement with them. Specific queries or requests regarding the configuration of your auth keys should be directed to the merchant site you’re promoting.

If your auth key is encoded with only one destination URL, that is where all traffic that follows your affiliate link will go. Alternately, if your auth key enables multiple destination URLs (e.g. different tour pages), you will be offered a drop-down selection box to choose the URL you want your traffic to go to in the subaccount settings (accessible via the ‘subaccount’ menu in the navigation sidebar when logged into your GMBill affiliate account). Finally, if your auth key permits custom destinations, there will be a form in the subaccount settings pane, allowing you to nominate your own destination URL for each sub-account your create with that auth key. If you don’t know which auth key to use for your method of promotion, the best course of action is to contact the merchant you’re promoting.

 

An affiliate link is a special link that deposits an affiliate cookie on all traffic that follows it. Each affiliate link is paired to a subaccount, which is in turn defined by the auth-key that created it. When referring your traffic to merchant site you promote, it is essential you do so with the full and correct affiliate link, otherwise your affiliate cookie may not be applied to your referred traffic, and any sales thereafter will not be credited to you.

Anatomy of a GMBill.com link code

It is possible to modify your affiliate link, however, there are some issues to consider. Take the following (non-functional) example:

http://www.gmbill.com/redirect.php?aff=9999xYZ1&track=ExampleTrackingCode

The green part of this example link indicates the part that affiliates can change at their discretion. The red part indicates essential elements assigned by GMBill; they must never be changed, otherwise your affiliate link will not work. Link codes are your key to getting paid; if you don’t link correctly, you will not get credit for the sale. The key to coding your affiliate link correctly is understanding it’s anatomy.

Required fields Optional fields
http://www.gmbill.com/redirect.php? aff=9999 xYZ1 &track=ExampleTrackingCode
Directs traffic to the GMBill page that sets the affiliate cookie. The question mark indicates a following variable. Denotes the Aff ID. (The affID shown here is for example purposes only, don’t use this one!) Denotes which subaccount sales will be credited to. This is an optional variable, maximum 12 characters in length, which allows precise tracking of sales. In this example, we have used the variable “ExampleTrackingCode”, you can use whatever alphanumeric string you like. Any sales made will be tagged with any tracking code present in the affiliate link followed.

 

How do I do a test join?

Doing a test join helps ascertain if referred sales are being attributed correctly. To perform a test join you simply need to follow the same steps a customer you refer does:


  1. Clear all GMB and CCB cookies. If already set, these will confuse the result of this test.
  2. Get your own GMBill (and, if using merged links, a CCBill) cookie set in the same way a potential customer would. Access your promotional method the same way your traffic does, then click on the affiliate link that sends the potential customers to the merchant you’re promoting (this will set the affiliate cookie). Go through the entire join process. Enter a username that includes your four-digit Aff ID.
  3. Log into your GMB Affiliate account, and check if the sale shows up in the ‘Summary’ menu, (stats are updated hourly, so you may have to wait a bit, or time your join carefully).
  4. Once you have seen the results be sure to contact the merchant and ask them to refund your subscription – advise that you’re an affiliate performing a test join, quote the username you chose, and the unique GMBill subscription ID allocated to the account upon creation.

If the sale does not show in your GMB account, there’s a deeper problem somewhere – contact us, and we’ll help you solve it.

If the sale does show up, you’ll know everything is working as it should.

 

Provided you have already registered as a GMBill affiliate, you can find the affiliate link for each of your subaccounts in the subaccount menu (accessible from the navigation sidebar when logged into your GMBill affiliate account).

 

What do I need to know when I am switching from CCBill to GMBill?

If the merchant site you promote is changing from CCBill to GMBill, there is some key information to take note of to ensure a smooth transition, and that all due sales are credited to you during the changeover process.
 
This information is separate from the registration process; a process largely handled and driven by the merchant making the transition.

Equivalent terminology

Familiar with CCBill terminology already? It’s mostly the same for us; we’ve listed the key differences below:

GMBill term CCBill term
Customer (Consumer)
Anyone who purchases something on a GMBill merchant site. An affiliate’s goal is to convert traffic into customers.


Subaccount (Subaccount)
Same word, very different usage. On CCBill Subaccounts belong to merchants; from an affiliate’s perspective subaccounts in effect distinguish between different programs. For GMBill, a subaccount is a division of an affiliate account. See the FAQ entry on GMBill subaccounts more info.


Merchant (Client/Sponsor/Merchant)
In different contexts, CCBill will use the terms ‘client’, ‘sponsor’, and ‘merchant’ to refer to commercial sites that employ their billing services, to which affiliates direct their traffic in return for commission on any resultant sales. At GMBill, we stick to ‘merchant’. See the FAQ entry on GMBill merchants more info.


Summary (Reports)
When managing your affiliate account in CCBill, ‘reports’ is where you find detailed statistics on your promotional efforts. In GMBill, the equivalent menu is ‘Summary’. More info on how to use the Summary menu can be found in the ‘Help Documentation’ menu, when logged into your GMBill affiliate account.


Merging links

Most likely, even after you switch to GMBill, there will be a period of time where you’ll need to ensure your affiliate cookie for both GMBill and CCBill is set on the traffic you refer. To achieve this, you will need to merge your GMBill and CCBill affiliate links. Worry not! We have a special tool to help you do just that:

    https://www.gmbill.com/site/afflink_encode.php

Enter your old CCBill and new GMBill affiliate links into the corresponding forms (be sure no spaces are copied in, and the links are 100% accurate), then click Create. Below, in the Combined URL form your new, combined CCBill and GMBill affiliate link will appear. Do not edit this link! even the slightest change could render it inoperable. GMBill provides this tool to be helpful, but strongly recommend you test the link thoroughly to ensure both affiliate cookies are being set; we do not guarantee the efficacy of this link combiner.