Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

Using GeoRiot to maximise affiliate revenue

Screenshot of the GeoRiot dashboard

Firstly, apologies for the horrible entry title. I feel dirty for writing something with so many buzzwords, but couldn’t come up with anything shorter.

You may notice that if you click any links to iTunes and Amazon from this blog, that the links point to ‘’. This is the URL shorterner of GeoRiot, which localises affiliate links. It offers four key features:

1. Selecting the right affiliate programme

Affiliate programmes are usually not global. For iTunes, there is one affiliate programme (TradeDoubler) for Europe and South America, and another (Performance Horizon Group, or PHG) for most of the rest of the world. GeoRiot passes links through the correct one, so that you get commission. PHG actually replaced two other affiliate programmes (Rakuten LinkShare and DGM), so originally there were three companies to work with.

2. Selection of the right country store for the user

So a German user will go to the German iTunes Store and, and not the UK iTunes Store and And, they’ll be pointed at the right product too.

3. Shorter links

instead of the long and largely unreadable links that Apple and Amazon normally offer, you get shorter URLs. You can also customise the URLs – for example the link to Wednesday’s review of Ecoute was

4. Aggregated performance tracking

GeoRiot aggregates the reports across all of the affiliate programmes, so you can see how many people click on your links, and how much commission you get. It even tells you how more effective it is at boosting your commission – in my case, 29% of clicks would have resulted in an error if it weren’t for GeoRiot.

There’s always a catch…

There’s a slight catch, of course. GeoRiot has to make money somehow. The main way is by claiming commission on your links for countries that you don’t have accounts for. For example, I haven’t signed up to get commission from TradeDoubler for Brazilian users, so GeoRiot will get all of the commission I would have got from this.

If I did have accounts for all countries, or the countries I don’t earn from account for less than 15% of my clicks, then ‘Active Click Sharing’ kicks in. Here, GeoRiot would divert some clicks to their own affiliate codes – up to 15% of those outside your home country (you always get 100% of your home country clicks). That means that the commission for someone in the US, who clicked a link on this web site and bought a song on iTunes, may go to GeoRiot and not to me. But the chances are that it would go to me.

Setting up GeoRiot on your site

When I joined GeoRiot I initially had to re-code all of my links to point to them, and this is arguably the best way as it works best with feeds. However, you can also add a small piece of jQuery JavaScript to your pages to do this for you, if you wish. This is similar to how the Amazon Link Localiser plugin for WordPress works (which I used to use for Amazon links), but this script also changes iTunes links too. It would be nice if the GeoRiot folks could create a WordPress plugin that inserts the JavaScript block automatically.

Using GeoRiot seems to have boosted my earnings a little, but I’m earning so little at present that it’s not easy to compare. So far I’ve made less than £3 on TradeDoubler over 18 months, and less than £1 with PHG. Still, someday it’ll add up to something worthwhile. I hope.

One Comment

  1. Thanks for the mention!