On July 1, Google officially migrated all accounts to Upgraded URLs. While Google’s descriptions of the new feature have primarily focused on the simplification of tracking templates and decrease in ad downtime, we were intrigued to see if the changes might spill over and affect affiliates’ ability to hijack paid search ads.
So, we did some testing of the new AdWords URLs to see what we could find. The results? Unfortunately for brands, this update doesn’t seem to have done much to mitigate ad hijacking. There may be some short term reductions as ad hijackers have to update their campaigns to accommodate the new URL requirements—but most hijackers have probably taken these steps already.
In the long term, it’s unlikely that hijackers will be thwarted by the change. The upgrade appears to have been purely focused on the improvement of tracking URLs and ad uptime. To us, that underscores the need to be continually monitoring your affiliates and ensuring that they’re following your program’s rules.
Have you seen any changes in affiliate activity recently? How has your migration process gone? Let us know in the comments below!