help-articles | Tracking Installs

The goal of an App Download campaign is to generate installs at the lowest cost for the app you are promoting. As such, tracking your installs is very important to understand the efficiency and the success of your campaign.

Measurement and attribution is simple in online advertising because of the seamless browsing experience and the presence of cookies. The same, however, becomes slightly complex in the mobile advertising world mainly because of the app stores and the absence of cookies in between apps. Here is where a tracking platform comes in.

A tracking platform not only reports installs acquired from campaigns across ad networks, but also helps ad networks optimize campaigns performance.

Tracking app installs across multiple mobile ad networks requires technical integration with your preferred attribution partner. InMobi works with the best attribution partners in the world a.k.a, with our MTAP’s (Mobile Tracking and Attribution Partners). Integration with these partners has been certified by InMobi and advertisers using any of these attribution partners will benefit from this tight partnership. If you do not have a partner and want to track installs, InMobi provides you with our very own tracking platform.

Setting Up a Tracker

Both MPATs and the InMobi tracking platform provide advertisers with an SDK that needs to be installed in the advertiser app. Please refer to the partner guidelines to integrate the SDK correctly. Pay special attention when you are doing android integration to ensure that the Referrer works correctly. Also, some partners, including InMobi, provide a non-SDK mode of integration via API’s.

After you install and verify the SDK, set up your InMobi campaign. InMobi only requires the landing page URL AKA the click to tracking URL from the attribution partner. Make sure that you choose the correct partner in the drop-down and paste the provided tracking URL.

Follow the below steps to set up your tracker:

  1. Create a campaign with InMobi. Please see here for details on how to set up a campaign.
  2. Select a tracker from the drop-down menu on the campaign creation page.
  3. After creating a campaign and ad group, click the Campaigns tab. You will see a list of all your campaigns.
  4. Locate your campaign's row and then click inside the Tracker Status column.
  5. Enter the tracking URL in the field provided.
  6. After the tracking URLs are set up, you will have to set up postbacks to InMobi.
    Postbacks are install confirmations that are sent to InMobi that help in reporting and optimisation. Some partners do this step without any user involvement. But, with other partners, the advertiser has to specifically set up postbacks to InMobi. Without this step the campaign cannot be started as InMobi will not receive confirmations of any downloads. Postbacks help InMobi to:
    • Optimise the campaign to acquire users in line with the advertiser’s goal.
    • Report the number of installs per campaign.
    • Tracker verification.

Notes:

  • Tracking URLs contain placeholders that are replaced by InMobi one at click time. These placeholders help our partners to attribute a download to a click. They also contain additional parameters that are used for reporting. Below are some of the place holders (or, macros) that InMobi uses to pass information to our partners on click.
    • Device ID macros: These are placeholders for passing device Identifiers to the partner. Device Identifiers are used to attribute a download to a click. Attribution SDKs collect device ID from the app. The attribution partner matches the device ID collected by the SDK with the device IDs passed on click.
      • $IDA: iOS Identifier for advertising.
      • $GPID: Android Google play advertising ID
      • $UDID: Android md5 of android_ID (being phased out)
      • $O1: Android sha1 of android_ID (being phased out)
    • Click Identifier: InMobi passes a unique Identifier on click to the attribution partner. This is passed back to InMobi upon install. InMobi needs the click identifier to verify the install and report it against the correct ad group, campaign, and creative.
      • $IMP_ID: Macro used to send across InMobi’s click ID.
    • Additional Parameters: Some partners accept additional parameters on click that help the advertiser get reports from that partner. Some of the additional parameters InMobi supports are listed below.
      • $APPOGRAPHIC_ID: Will be replaced with the Appographic segment ID only for ads served from Appographic ad groups. Else, it will be replaced with -1. This link captures the mapping of appographic IDs to Appographic segment names.
      • $GEO_CC: Will be replaced with the country code. We follow the ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 country codes.
      • $HANDSET_TYPE: Will be replaced by the device type (feature phone/smart phone/tablet).
      • $CAMPAIGN_NAME: This parameter will be replaced by the campaign name.
      • $ADGROUP_NAME: Will be replaced by the ad group name.
      • $CREATIVE_NAME: Will be replaced by the ad name.
      • $BLINDED_SITE_ID: Will be replaced by the blinded publisher ID. If the ad served is from an Appographic ad group, the publisher ID replacement will be -1>
  • If the client uses an MTAP partner, InMobi verifies the tracker integration by checking if postbacks are being sent to InMobi. For this to happen, please make sure the tracking partner sends not only InMobi installs, but all installs. InMobi uses this data not only for tracker integration verification but also for performing negative targeting, out of the box. If the tracking partner does not send all install postbacks to InMobi, you will not be able to start the campaign, as downloads won't be reported.
  • InMobi suggests that advertisers use either InMobi in-house tools, or one of its MTAPs for attribution and tracking. However, if an advertiser wants to use a tracker other than these, select the option Others. Remember that InMobi might not report downloads in this case and will not be able to optimise the campaign.
  • Please contact InMobi support for integrating with a third party tracker that is not a part of our list.

Integration Status

Please see below for meanings of the different integration statuses:

  • Pending: You need to add the tracking URL provided to you by your tracking partner (MTAP).
  • Not Verified: InMobi has not received any install postback from the tracking partner.
  • Skipped: You are using a tracking partner who is not one of our MTAP’s.
  • Verified: You’re all set!

Debugging

If your campaign is stuck at Not Verified, here are some possible reasons, and things you can do to move it to Verified.

  • If your tracking partner is not sending all installs, do a tracking URL test. This test involves you clicking the tracking link on your mobile device, and then installing and opening the app. This should trigger a postback to InMobi. Then, wait for 15-20 minutes for InMobi to verify the integration.
  • Even after this, if status is Not Verified, contact the support team at your tracking partner to check why are they not sending install postbacks to InMobi.

Attribution Logic

All our MTAPs (Mobile Tracking and Attribution partners) use a combination of technologies to track and attribute an install to the correct network. The technologies include:

  • Device identifiers: Identifiers that are unique to a device that can be used for advertising purposes. For example, the IDFA in iOS and Google Play advertiser ID in Android. These Identifiers do not contain any Personally Identifiable Information (PII) and are safe to share.
  • Google Referrer: A technology available only to Android clients where Google provides a way to pass campaign and source information to the app via the Play Store.
  • Fingerprinting: A technology based on non-personally identifiable information obtained from user request headers (IP, UA, and so on) that is used if device Identifiers are not available. For example, Mobile Web.

All our partners use a combination of the above technologies for matching an install to a click. We call this the Attribution Waterfall.

Tracking with the InMobi Conversion Tracker

InMobi provides advertisers with an in-house conversion tracking platform that is not only easy to integrate, but is also free. Note that our in-house conversion tracker lets you track installs for the InMobi network alone. We do not support tracking installs across other ad networks. To integrate with the InMobi conversion tracking platform please go through the instructions here.

Tracking URL Specifications

If you chose the InMobi in-house tracking solution, you do not have to worry about setting up tracking URLs and install postbacks. Our system does this for you. All you need to do is follow the integration guidelines and chose IAT while setting up the campaign. If the integration is correct, the verification should be done and you will be able to start the campaign in no time.

Attribution Logic

IAT uses all the attribution technologies available for tracking installs to make sure that no install in missed or over-attributed. These technologies include device Identifiers, Referrer (Android only), and fingerprinting (only when device Identifiers are not available).

The waterfall for IAT attribution is as follows:

iOS:

  1. Check if the IDFA matches any click.
  2. Check fingerprint with OS version, network, language and so on.
  3. If a click candidate is found with IDFA, but they don’t match, discard.

Android:

  1. Check if the Android ID, MAC, or Google Advertiser ID match.
  2. Check if the Referrer matches.
  3. Check fingerprint with OS version, network, language, and so on.
  4. If a click candidate is found with the device ID, but it don’t match, discard it.

Attribution Window
IAT uses a 10-day attribution window for device based or Referrer matching and a 24-hour window for fingerprint matching.

Tracking with MTAPs (InMobi Mobile Tracking and Attribution Partners)

InMobi works with multiple mobile attribution partners. Integration with these partners has been certified by InMobi. Advertisers using an MTAP partner will benefit from the tight integrations that have been established between the partners and InMobi. You can view all the benefits here.

Certifications are based on attribution methodology, performance optimisation features (for example, like latency reduction), advanced targeting feature compliance, operability and support.

Tracking with MobileAppTracking (MAT)

Please contact MAT support ( support@mobileapptracking.com) for integration of your app with MAT’s SDK. MAT also supports API integrations for tracking installs and post install events. See here for their integration guide.

Integration Guidelines

Please refer to the instructions provided here for setting up InMobi campaigns using MobileAppTracking. After setting up, you will have a tracking URL that needs to be used in the InMobi campaign set up. The next section describes what the tracking URL looks like, and what it does.

Tracking URL Specifications

MAT’s InMobi tracking URLs will look something like this:

MAT allows InMobi passing custom parameters in the tracking link. These parameters are used by some clients to get reporting data on the parameters passed. Some of the common parameters used are: site ID, creative ID, campaign ID, and so on. This link describes all the parameters that can be added to the tracking URL.

Attribution Logic

  • Android: MAT uses a combination of Referrer, Identifier, and fingerprinting for tracking installs. The waterfall is Referer > Identifier > Fingerprint. This means that Referrer is given the highest priority, followed by Identifier, and then Fingerprint when it comes to matching installs with clicks.
  • iOS: MAT uses a combination of Identifier and Fingerprinting for tracking installs. The waterfall is Identifier > Fingerprint.
  • Attribution Window: MAT uses a 10 day attribution window for device-based matching and a 24-hour window for Fingerprint matching.

For more information on the attribution logic used by MAT, please click here.

Tracking with Kochava

Please contact Kochava support (support@kochava.com) to integrate your app with Kochava’s SDK. Kochava also supports API integrations for tracking installs and post install events. Click here for their integration guidelines.

Integration Guidelines

Refer to instructions provided here for setting up InMobi campaigns using Kochava. When the setup is complete, you will have a tracking URL that needs to be used during the InMobi campaign set up. The next section describes what the tracking URL looks like, and what it does.

Tracking URL Specifications

Below are parameters that Kochava uses to send data. Anything sent to Kochava can be resupplied to InMobi in the form of a postback. Users of the Kochava interface can send any information they want on the click.

Note: Kochava supports all possible Device Identifiers for the purpose of reconciliation because they work across various publishers. Please note the device Identifier in the server-to-server API makes calls using the device_id_type parameter. The default for Android will be android_ID and the default for iOS will be IDFA.

Kochava supports clients passing custom parameters in the tracking link. These parameters are used by some clients to get reporting data on the parameters passed. Some of the common parameters used are site ID, creative ID, campaign ID, and so on. For a description of all the parameters that can be added to the tracking URL, see here and then locate the Standard Click Parameters section

Attribution Logic

Kochava’s reconciliation system works in a waterfall format. The attribution for an install is made against candidate clicks in the following order of priority.

  1. Google Referrer (Android): If device based reconciliation and progressive reconciliation have not gathered the Identifiers need for performing accurate attribution, Google Referrer may be used if these criteria are met: the app must be Android, must have the SDK integrated, and the Google Referrer UI within the Kochava dashboard must be activated and populated. Please see here for details setting up the Google Referrer tracking here.
  2. Device Based Reconciliation: Device based reconciliation is performed by gathering Device Identifiers from the click feed, and then comparing them to the Device Identifiers gathered from the install feed. If they match, a conversion is attributed to the network that drove the install. In this approach, the device ID and device ID type are taken into account and directly compared according to how the network or source articulates the device ID. If no device ID is present in a click, it is excluded from this step in the waterfall.
  3. Progressive Reconciliation: If the device Identifiers present on the click and install feeds do not match, Kochava performs progressive reconciliation by comparing all possible variables of the device Identifiers present. In other words, Kochava will cross-encrypt, change cases, and further manipulate the device Identifiers presented on the click to find attributions. If this was not done, data scrubbing and manipulating would have been needed to see if the match was made after hashing and manipulating the Identifiers. Encryption such as md5 and sha1 are taken into consideration as well as the possibility of the Identifiers being passed as another ID type (for example, IMEI is compared with android_ID).
  4. Fingerprinting: If no device Identifiers are present on a click, nor are there variations of those Device Identifiers, or any Google Referrer in place, Kochava will apply fingerprinting logic. The Kochava fingerprint algorithm uses IP address info, user agent data, carrier info, and other metrics that can be gathered from the click header. Typically, IP addresses are compared to other Device Identifiers and cross-compared with the Identifiers received on the install.
    Important! Kochava fingerprinting is only applied to clicks for which Device Identifier based attribution is not made, nor is Device Identifier information present in a click. Kochava does not apply fingerprint routines to those clicks that have Device Identifiers. This is an important differentiator, as it results in true, accurate attribution and does not result in false-positive attribution (which results in over-attribution and more money spent by the advertiser).

Attribution window: Kochava uses a 30-day window for device based matching and a 7-day window for fingerprint matching. However, clients can change this and create a custom matching window per network.

Tracking with AD-X

Please contact AD-X support to integrate your app with the AD-Xs SDK. To see their integration page, click here.

Integration Guidelines

Please refer to these instructions on setting up campaigns with InMobi using AD-X. When the setup is complete, you will have a tracking URL that needs to be used during the InMobi campaign set up. The next section describes what the tracking URL looks like, and what it does.

Tracking URL Specifications

The Ad-X tracking URL for InMobi will look like this:

AD-X allows InMobi to pass custom parameters in the tracking link. These are used by some clients to get reporting data on the parameters passed. Some of the common parameters used are site ID, creative ID, campaign ID, and so on.

InMobi can use subid2 to subid10 with the above clicks URLs to send custom parameter.

The format is a standard query string parameters. For example: <Tracking_URL>?subid2=<CUSTOM_PARAM>&subid3=<CUSTOM_PARAM>&…

Attribution Logic

  • Android: AD-X uses a combination of Referrer and Identifier for tracking installs. The waterfall is android Referrer > Identifier
  • iOS: AD-X uses a combination of Identifier and fingerprinting for tracking installs. The waterfall is Identifier > Fingerprint (IP address + User Agent).
  • Attribution window: AD-X uses a 14-day attribution window for device-based matching and a 24-hour window for fingerprint matching.

Tracking with AppsFlyer

Please contact AppsFlyer support (support@appsflyer.com) to integrate your app with the Appsflyer SDK. To access their integration page, click here.

Integration Guidelines

Please see here for instructions on how to set up a campaign with InMobi using Appsflyer. After the setup is complete, you will have a tracking URL that needs to be used in InMobi’s campaign set up. The next section describes what the tracking URL looks like, and what it does.

Tracking URL Specifications

The AppsFlyer tracking URL for InMobi will look like this:

See here for more on how the AppsFlyer tracking link is structured.

Appsflyer supports InMobi passing custom parameters in the tracking link. These parameters are used by some clients to get reporting on the parameters passed. Some of the most common parameters used are: site ID, creative ID, campaign ID and so on.

This link describes all the parameters that can be added to the tracking URL.

Attribution Logic

  • Android: Appsflyer uses a combination of Referrer and Identifier for tracking installs. The waterfall is Referrer > Identifier.
  • iOS: Appsflyer uses a combination of Identifier and fingerprinting for tracking installs. The waterfall is Identifier > Fingerprint.
  • Attribution window: Appsflyer uses a 7-day attribution window for both device based and fingerprint matching.

Tracking with TalkingData

Please contact TalkingData’s support for integration of your app with TalkingData’s SDK.

Tracking URL Specifications

TalkingData’s tracking URL for InMobi is only a base URL (that is, short URL). They would like clients to append the InMobi device specific and network specific macros to the base URL.

The iOS base URL looks like: http://a.appcpa.net/ss/v1/click/V9QlI5
The Android base URL looks like: http://a.appcpa.net/ss/v1/click/1cscUt

Ensure to add the required device and impression ID parameters to the base URL, as indicated above.

Attribution Logic

Talking Data uses device IDs, first. If the match is not successful, then they use fingerprinting. If fingerprinting doesn't work, then will use IP plus timestamp. This is for both Android and iOS.

Tracking with Adjust

Please contact Adjust support (support@adjust.com) to integrate your app with the Adjust SDK. This is the link to their integration page.

Integration Guidelines

To set up campaigns with InMobi using Adjust, look at these instructions. You must enable the InMobi module in Adjust before running the campaign. See here for the latest documentation. There is a section AdJust's special partners document that follows the panel in the dashboard

Tracking_Adjust_1

Since all of the modules are the same, the documentation focuses on the key particularities, and the special partners document will be extended a little to provide more detail on partner setup in general.

After the setup is complete, you will have a tracking URL that needs to be used in the InMobi campaign set up. The next section describes what the tracking URL looks like, and what it does.

Tracking URL Specifications

Adjust’s tracking URL is a simple shortened URL. There is no template created for networks. They provide clients with the flexibility of sending tracking parameters appended to the base URL provided by the client.

Your tracking link will look like this: http://app.adjust.io/foobar.

Append the device ID parameters they support as well as the 'inmobi_click_id' to the above link.

AdJust supports InMobi passing as many custom parameters as wanted in the tracking link. These parameters are used by some clients to get reporting data on the parameters passed. Some of the common parameters used are site ID, creative ID and campaign ID.

This link describes all the parameters that can be added to the tracking URL.

Attribution Logic

The waterfall for Adjust attribution is as follows:

iOS:

  1. Check if the IDFA matches any click.
  2. Check the Fingerprint with the OS version, network, language, and so on.
  3. If a click candidate is found with the IDFA but it doesn’t match, discard it.

Android:

  1. Check if the Android ID, MAC or Google Advertiser ID matches.
  2. Check if the Referrer matches.
  3. Check the Fingerprint with the OS version, network, language, an so on.
  4. If a click candidate is found with the device ID, but it doesn’t match, discard it.

Attribution window:

Adjust attribution windows are as follows:

  • Device IDs, Android Referrer: 7-day attribution window after click
  • Fingerprinting: Roughly a 24-hour attribution window after click

Tracking with Apsalar

Please contact apsalar support (support@apsalar.com) to integrate your app with the Apslar SDK. Please see their integration page.

Integration Guidelines

See the Apsalar documentation on setting up attribution links and postbacks.

After the setup is complete, you will have a tracking URL that needs to be used during the InMobi campaign set up. The next section describes what the tracking URL looks, and what it does.

Tracking URL Specifications

Apsalar’s tracking URL for InMobi will look like this:

Apsalar supports InMobi passing custom parameters in the tracking link. These parameters are used by some clients to get reporting data on the parameters passed. Some of the common parameters used are site ID, creative ID and campaign ID and so on.

See here for a description of all the custom parameters that can be used by InMobi to pass data on click.

Attribution Logic

  • Android: Apsalar uses a combination of Referrer and Identifier for tracking installs. The waterfall is android Referrer > Identifier.
  • iOS: Apsalar uses a combination of Identifier and fingerprinting for tracking installs. The waterfall is Identifier > Fingerprint.
  • Attribution Window: Apsalar uses a 30-day attribution window for device based matching and a 24-hour window for fingerprint matching.

Setting Up Campaigns with Other Trackers

Although InMobi recommends using an MTAP for tracking your campaigns, we support clients using their own tracker, or a third party tracker. To run such campaigns:

  1. Choose Others as a tracker and,
  2. Enter the tracking URL.

Important! If you select Others as a tracking option, you may not see downloads in our reporting. Also, InMobi will not be able to optimise your campaign.

Setting Up Campaigns without Tracking

If you do not want to track your campaign and still want to run your campaign with InMobi:

  1. Choose Others as a tracker and
  2. Enter the iTunes/Play store URL.

Important! If you select Others as a tracking option, you may not see downloads in our reporting. Also, InMobi will not be able optimise your campaign.