Q: I just got an email from a merchant stating that a bunch of affiliates are violating their bid cap policies on both Google AdWords and Yahoo! Sponsored Search. How could they determine that without the bidder’s permission and without violating privacy policies of the PPC accounts?
A: I’m not sure what this particular merchant is doing, but I’m still using the same old, unscientific approach of checking to see whether affiliates are ranking higher than me.
In general, when I’ve had this rule in effect, I’d bid a penny higher than the bid cap, so if affiliates were turning up higher I’d give them a call to say, “What’s up?”
Presumably, the affiliate is bidding higher than the bid cap.
While this method may not be foolproof, it’s an indicator. If any affiliate manager has a more involved way to do it, I’m not aware of it.