Learn about Singular's advanced tracking link technology, the features it offers, and how to create and manage Singular Links.

 

Tracking Link Terms and Concepts

What is a redirect?

When a user clicks a regular link on the web, such as www.linkedin.com, the browser asks the URL’s server (in this case, LinkedIn) what it should do, and in return, the URL’s server gives the browser some HTML to display to the user.

When a user clicks a tracking link, the link provider’s server tells the user’s browser to go to a different URL instead (the redirect URL) and to serve the content from that URL. The redirection is usually performed via HTTP 302.

What is a fallback redirect?

In the context of deep linking, a fallback redirect is a redirect destination that you want to take the user to if the deep link fails.

Typically, if a user clicks an ad for your app, you want the deep link to send them into a specific screen inside the app. But if the user doesn’t already have the app installed, you want to redirect the user to the app store instead to download your app.

Supported Features by Partner

Which partners support deep linking with Singular Links?
Note: Deep linking with Singular requires special configuration in your Singular SDK/S2S integration. To learn more, see Singular Links Prerequisites.

Deep linking support varies by partner. Some partners even require deep links for re-engagement campaigns, since these campaigns target known existing users who already have the app.

Self-Attributing Network (SAN) Partners

Self-attributing partners such as Facebook and Google Ads do not support tracking links for mobile app campaigns. To configure deep links with these partners, you need to use the partner's dashboard and you may have to configure your app according to the partner's instructions.

Learn more about deep linking with the following self-attributing partners:

For more information, we recommend reaching out to your partner contact.

Non-Self-Attributing Partners

Some partners in this category do not use MMP tracking links for redirects or deep links. Instead, Singular receives the click notification asynchronously.  These partners are also known as server-to-server or asynchronously integrated partners, and deep links can generally be configured in the partner campaign dashboard.

For non-self attributing partners that support tracking link redirects for mobile app campaigns, Singular Links may be used to deliver the deep link experience when engaging users who already have your app installed.

Note for iOS Apps: While deep linking is Universal Links is the preferred method to deep link on iOS, it's still known to have its limitations. Singular Links are generated with a deep link destination will always attempt to use Universal Links to deep link. However, a fallback option is available if your iOS app supports traditional app scheme deep links. This is used if the partner doesn't support Universal Link deep linking. 
Which partners support DEFERRED deep linking with Singular Links?
Deferred deep linking with Singular requires certain prerequisites with your SDK (or S2S) implementation with Singular (see Singular Links Prerequisites).

When working with a partner, you may want to consider using deferred deep links in your campaigns, and is also recommended when a campaign is using deep links as well.  Similar to deep links, deferred deep links set-up differs between self-attributing and non-self attributing partners.

Self-Attributing Partners

Self-attributing partners such as Facebook and Google Ads do not support tracking links for mobile app campaigns. Therefore, deep linking and deferred deep linking are configured in the partner's dashboard and may require partner-specific app handling requirements. Deferred deep linking with self-attributing networks are built into the MMP integration itself with partners that support deferred deep linking in the integration. As of January 2020, Singular supports deferred deep linking with Facebook. Reach out to your Singular customer success manager to inquire about deferred deep linking possibilities for more self-attributing networks in the works.

Non-Self-Attributing Partners

Deferred deep linking with any non-self-attributing partner can be enabled and used with any of these partners by simply by configuring the deferred deep link value for the Singular Link. Unlike deep links, deferred deep linking is not dependent on partner redirects and is a feature enabled via your integrations with Singular's SDK (or S2S API).

Creating Singular Links

Why isn’t Facebook/Twitter in the Source Name dropdown?

Self-Attributing Networks such as Facebook and Twitter do not use Singular tracking links. To configure them, see the instructions in Partner Integrations in Detail.

What is re-engagement?

Re-engagement is the renewed use of a product by a user who has already been converted in the past. Singular can track re-engagement if you mark the campaign as one that aims at re-engagement. To do so, select Enable Re-engagement Tracking in the campaign's tracking link(s).

For more information, see the Re-engagement FAQ.

Note that not all partners support this type of marketing campaign.

Why is “Enable Re-engagement” not available for a partner?

Some partners do not support retargeting campaigns (campaigns that aim to create re-engagement). If a partner does support these campaigns, but the option is not available in Singular’s Create Link/Edit Link page, contact Singular’s support team so we can update the integration.

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What’s the difference between “deterministic” and “fingerprinted” clicks/views?

Deterministic clicks/views are attributed to a source based on a device identifier or Google Install Referrer.

Fingerprinted clicks/views are attributed based on device fingerprinting methods, i.e., a combination of various properties that Singular gathers about the user’s device at the absence of a device ID.

For more information, see Singular Attribution Methods.

How do I change the attribution lookback window for a link?

By default, tracking links use the default lookback window configured for the partner in the Partner Configuration page. However, you can override the default lookback window and customize it for each individual link by selecting Override attribution windows under Attribution Settings.

This allows greater control for partners with different types of channels that can benefit from varying attribution windows.

See The Attribution Lookback Window for more information.

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How can I create a tracking link with a shorter URL?

Note: Link shortening is available for custom links only.

After you click Generate and see the tracking link URL, you can select Shorten Link to create a shorter version of the same link. This is useful for custom channels where the URL is exposed to the end-user, or for channels with restrictions on the length of the URL, such as SMS.

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Tip: Shortened links can also be used to update live campaigns without having to swap out the tracking link.

For example, you may use a banner or landing page to track a regularly changing promotional offer. If you use a full-length Singular tracking link, you have to swap out the link whenever you want to change the promo details. If you use a shortened link instead, you can update the promo details from the Singular Link Management page (by changing the link parameters).

Link Structure and Parameters

Viewing, Editing, and Archiving Links

Advanced Usage

How do I pass dynamic data to the app through my Singular Link?

You can make the link do even more work by adding data to it dynamically as you display your ads. This data can then be read and used by your app if a user engages with one of the ads and then arrives into your app. To add dynamic data, append the _p parameter and any value to the end of your Singular Link. _p stands for "passthrough" and you can give it a URL-encoded JSON value or an unstructured string value. 

Example: You have a shopping app and you show dynamic banner ads of different shoes on a mobile website. You have created a Singular Link that looks as follows: https://myshoppingapp.sng.link/A59c0/nha7

When you display the ad, the specific pair of shoes shown has a product ID, e.g., “Shoes123”. You append the product ID to your Singular Link using the “_p” parameter. The result: https://myshoppingapp.sng.link/A59c0/nha7?_p=Shoes123

Whenever a user engages with that banner and then installs and opens the app, your app can read the product ID using the Singular SDK. Your app team can use this information to personalize the user’s first app experience.

JSON example: You can build a JSON object as follows:

{
“productid”:”Shoes123”,
“qty”:1
}

Then you URL encode it and append it to the _p parameter in your Singular tracking link:

https://myshoppingapp.sng.link/A59c0/nha7?_p=%7B%22productid%22%3A%22Shoes123%22%2C%22qty%22%3A1%7D
How do I use a landing page with Singular Links?

If you decide that a landing page is right for your campaign, and your campaign depends on a mobile attribution provider for tracking, first consider the following:

  • Make sure there is a way for the user to convert to the app from the landing page.
  • Consider the media channel you’re working with. Integrated partners may support different methods to execute a landing page.

Then, decide which touchpoint you would like to attribute the install to.

  1. Tracking the click that takes the user to the landing page: In this case, just use the Singular Link you generate in the Link Management page as usual and define the landing page as your Mobile Fallback URL.
  2. Tracking the click that the user engages with within the landing page: If you choose this option, embed the Singular Link is in your landing page. Ensure the link from the ad to the landing page passes any necessary tracking values through to the landing page.
Which custom sources support deep linking and other Singular Links features?

You can use Singular Links to track your marketing efforts in self-owned channels such as social media or SMS. However, deep linking only works in some channels with some technologies.

We’ve compiled a list of known and common redirect limitations:

  Android iOS
  Fallback to Google Play Store Deep Link Fallback to App Store Deep Link
Facebook Feed Yes Landing Page Required Yes Landing Page Required
Facebook Messenger Yes Landing Page Required Yes Landing Page Required
YouTube Yes Landing Page Required Yes Landing Page Required
Gmail Yes Yes Yes Yes
Instagram Yes No No Landing Page Required
LINE Yes Yes Yes No
Mail (iOS) Yes Yes Yes Yes
Messages (iOS) Yes Yes Yes Yes
Reddit No No No No
Slack Yes Landing Page Required Yes Landing Page Required
Twitter Yes Landing Page Required Yes Landing Page Required
WeChat Yes No No No
WhatsApp Yes Yes Yes Yes
How can I add granularity, such as campaign-level data, when I use Singular Links with custom sources?

When you use Singular Links in custom sources, you can add dimension information to get that added granularity in your reports. For example, if you pass the campaign name in your tracking link, you will get campaign-level granularity in your report.

To pass the information, add it as a parameter to the link when you serve it. See the full list of tracking link reporting parameters supported by Singular. For example, the following link records the Campaign Name dimension as "CoolShoes123":

https://singularassist.sng.link/A59c0/u53f?_dl=singularassist%3A%2F%2F&_p=%7B%22productid%22%3A%22Shoes123%22%7D&pcn=CoolShoes123
How can I dynamically modify redirects for existing Singular Links?

You can override link redirects dynamically by adding _dl, _ddl, or other redirecting parameters to your Singular Link (see full table below). This can be useful, for example, if you're serving a dynamic deep link based on some input from the user, or in the context of the user engagement.

Example: You have a Singular Link originally created to deep link to myapp://homepage: https://myshoppingapp.sng.link/A59c0/nha7?_dl=myapp%3A%2F%2Fhomepage

You want to use that same link, but deep link to myapp://registration in some cases. To achieve that, update the _dl= to the new value and use the same link: https://myshoppingapp.sng.link/A59c0/nha7?_dl=myapp%3A%2F%2Fregistration

The following query parameters can be appended or modified as needed. Remember to URL-encode the value when appending it to a parameter.

Parameter Description
_dl Deep link for all mobile platforms. Note: Overriding/using this query parameter is only possible if the original link was enabled with deep linking.
_ddl Deferred deep link for all mobile platforms. Note: _ddl can be enable deferred deep linking even if not enabled via the UI during creation
_fallback_redirect The fallback redirect for all platforms (web + any other platform)
_android_dl Deep link for Android. This is typically used if your deep link URL on Android is different from your iOS app.
_android_redirect Redirect URL if the app is not installed on Android. This is typically the app store URL
_android_ddl Deferred deep link for Android. This is typically used if your deep link URL on Android is different from your iOS app. Note: _android_ddl can be enable deferred deep linking even if not enabled via the UI during creation
_ios_dl Deep link for iOS. This is typically used if your deep link URL on iOS is different from your Android app. Note: Overriding/using this query parameter is only possible if the original link was enabled with iOS deep linking.
_ios_redirect Redirect URL if the app is not installed on iOS. This is typically the app store URL.
_ios_ddl Deferred deep link for iOS. This is typically used if your deep link URL on iOS is different from your Android app. Note: _ios_ddl can be enable deferred deep linking even if not enabled via the UI during creation.
_force_redirect=1

In cases where iOS Universal Links may not deep link, appending &_force_redirect=1 (or &_force_redirect=true) will enable the Singular Link to use app scheme based deep linking to force the deep link to the end-user. 

This is most commonly used to enable deep linking with partners, as link wrapping will break Universal Links.

Prerequisites: an iOS app scheme has been configured for your app and the configured deep link value (_dl, _ios_dl) is using that app scheme.

A brief message or warning may be shown to the end-user, depending on the user's default browser.

I need my redirect destinations to receive the information that's in the Singular Link parameters. How can I make sure my parameters are forwarded?

Singular Links will automatically forward any utm_* or referrer parameters that are included in the link. This includes the singular_click_ID that is a part of the referrer parameter value. (Additional referrer= values appended to a Singular Link will be appended to the referrer next to the singular_click_ID.)

Appending &_forward_params=1 (or &_forward_params=true) to a Singular Link will forward all appended parameters for explicit parameter forwarding.

Examples:

Singular Link URL Parameters Forwarded Parameters Not Forwarded
https://singularassist.sng.link/A59c0/nha7?
this_is=not_forwarded&
utm_source=auto_forwarded&
referrer=also_auto_forwarded
utm_source=auto_forwarded
referrer=singular_click_id%3D0910cac2-f496-467f-8163-dc2251f5e601%26also_auto_forwarded
this_is=not_forwarded
https://singularassist.sng.link/A59c0/nha7?
this_is=forwarded&
utm_source=auto_forwarded&
referrer=also_auto_forwarded&
_forward_params=1
this_is=forwarded&
utm_source=auto_forwarded&
referrer=also_auto_forwarded&
 
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