Track ad spend with AppLovin

Adjust's integration with AppLovin lets you easily connect your account and view your aggregated ad spend data in the dashboard.

Before you begin

Here's what you need to know before getting started.

Availability

  • Business Pro pricing plan or higher

Requirements

  • An AppLovin Report Key (you can find this in your AppLovin account overview) 

Helpful information

  • If your AppLovin account details change, you’ll need to update this in Adjust as well  

Set up AppLovin ad spend tracking

Getting set up takes just a few simple steps. If you are new to tracking with AppLovin, skip the first step and jump immediately to Get your AppLovin credentials. If you already track with AppLovin, please first update your tracker campaign structure

Update tracker campaign structure 

Existing accounts that track with AppLovin need to update their tracker campaign structure. This lets Adjust receive the correct Campaign_ID to match and display ad spend data in the dashboard.  

Using the Unlink / Relink method

The easiest way to update your tracker structure is to unlink it from AppLovin, then relink it. Follow these steps. 

  1. Find your app and select your app options caret (^)
  2. Select Tracker URLs
  3. Select Settings (gear icon) next to your AppLovin tracker
  4. Select EDIT
  5. Use the dropdown menu to change the Network selection to --none-- 
  6. Select SAVE 

Your tracker is now unlinked from AppLovin. To relink your tracker, repeat steps 1 - 4. At step 5 change the Network field to applovin.

Using the manual method

To manually update your campaign structure, follow these steps. 

  1. Find your app and select your app options caret (^)
  2. Select Tracker URLs
  3. Select Settings (gear icon) next to your AppLovin tracker
  4. Select EDIT > Campaign Structure
  5. Move your mouse over the CAMPAIGN field and choose the Custom settings option
  6. Under CAMPAIGN enter: {CAMPAIGN_NAME}%20{CAMPAIGN_ID}
  7. Under ADGROUP enter: {APP_ID}
  8. Under CREATIVE enter: {AD_NAME}
  9. Select SAVE
  10. Append &campaign_id={CAMPAIGN_ID}&external_tracker_ids=1 to your tracker

Examples

This is a tracker without an updated campaign structure:

https://app.adjust.com/abc123?campaign={CAMPAIGN_NAME}&adgroup={APP_ID}&creative={AD_NAME}&idfa={IDFA}&country={CC}&gps_adid={IDFA}&device_type={DEVICE_TYPE}&publisher_id={APP_ID}&tracker_limit=100000&applovin_click_id={DID}&android_id_lower_sha1={HADID}

This is a tracker after successfully updating the campaign structure: 

https://app.adjust.com/abc123?campaign={CAMPAIGN_NAME}%20({CAMPAIGN_ID})&adgroup={APP_ID}&creative={AD_NAME}&idfa={IDFA}&country={CC}&gps_adid={IDFA}&campaign_id={CAMPAIGN_ID}&device_type={DEVICE_TYPE}&publisher_id={APP_ID}&tracker_limit=100000&applovin_click_id={DID}&external_tracker_ids=1&android_id_lower_sha1={HADID}

Get AppLovin credentials

To connect your AppLovin account with Adjust, you need to collect certain credentials. To do this, follow these steps in the AppLovin dashboard. 

  1. Log into your AppLovin account 
  2. Select Account > General > Keys
  3. Copy your Report Key

Check your AppLovin ad spend permission

In some cases, clients have reported missing AppLovin ad spend data or a discrepancy thereof, causing them to further investigate the issue with their account manager. The discovered solution was that the AppLovin app needed to be set up with the appropriate ad spend permission.

Your Adjust account manager may see the following error message in the API logs, which describe ad spend data not being pulled or displayed:

Invalid Column: app_id_external

This error message relates to the app_id_external column, which is reported as site_id on Adjust’s side. The site_id contains the ad group where the ad spend data is applied.

This results in the site_id column being empty or being reported as a discrepancy, when in fact it is only available to advertisers that have permission to view that column.

Check that you have the correct permission for Adjust to pull and display the ad group spend data in your AppLovin account. AppLovin manages the permission for viewing the app_id_external column, so contact your AppLovin account manager and they can submit a request for you.

Connect Adjust to AppLovin

To connect your Adjust dashboard to AppLovin, follow these steps.

  1. Select MENU
  2. Select Partner Ad Accounts > AppLovin
  3. Select ADD ACCOUNT
  4. Enter your Account Name 
  5. Enter your AppLovin Report Key (as copied from the AppLovin dashboard)
  6. Toggle ON Ad Spend by AppLovin 
  7. Select SAVE

Well done! You are now tracking ad spend with AppLovin. Your data will display with the next data fetch.

Export your data

The Adjust dashboard only displays aggregated data. To receive device-level data, use one of the following data export methods:

Note: AppLovin cost data is retrieved hourly.

Export ad spend data

To export your AppLovin ad spend data, append the following placeholders to your callback strings or include them in your CSV definition:

Adjust placeholderValue delivered
{cost_type}The campaign pricing model (available for ad spend tracking only) e.g., CPI; CPM; CPC
{cost_amount}Cost of the user engagement (available for ad spend tracking only) e.g., 4.99
{cost_currency}ISO 4217 currency code of the cost data (available for ad spend tracking only) e.g., USD
{reporting_cost}Cost of the user engagement converted to your app's reporting currency and as reported in the Adjust Dashboard (available for ad spend tracking only) e.g., 2.56

For information on where to find your ad spend data and the KPIs you can use to pull it, see our ad spend reporting article. 

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