If you need some help with downloading and installing your new IM Workbench app you can find that here:
How to enable/disable the second validation.
How the API Search tab works.
How the Browse Search tab works.
How the Product List tab works.
How the Edit Module tab works.
How to add custom image buttons. video
How the Preview tab works.
How to validate AdCrafter: Back to Index
You validate AdCrafter with the email address you used when you purchased the application.
To enter your email address, launch the app by double clicking on the AdCrafter jar. When the app open the validation text box will display.
Enter the email address you used to buy AdCrafter in the text box and click the Validate button
The tool will validate, gray out the email address and you will see the Amazon site in the browser tab.
Watch a video on validation:
If you would like to signup for an AdCrafter trial:
You can sign up here.
What AdCrafter settings do: Back to Index
Where are my settings?
The settings menu is behind the AdCrafter version text on the top left corner of the main title bar.
Clicking that drop down will display the News, Settings, Validate and Help tabs.
Those tabs functionality are:
Global Settings are on the:
There four sub tabs along the bottom of the Settings tab:
General tab: Back to Index
Tab Side: This drop down menu lets you move where the task tabs are located in the app. The selections are Top, Bottom, Left and Right.
Tab Size: This lets you choose between Small and Large tab sizes.
Browser Tabs Enabled: This lets you show/hide the extra browser tabs on the Browse Search task tab.
GUI Color: This is a color chooser that lets you set the GUI color to anything you want.
Auto Return Enabled: Checking this box will do an automatic back button click when you Add a product in the Collect Products tab. This seems like a simple little enhancement but it saves a LOT of time/clicks when you’re collecting products in the browser mode.
Small blue question icon: This is the default in app help link. It is context sensitive so clicking the ‘help’ link while you’re in the Settings tab will open your desktop browser and take you to the online help for AdCrafter Settings.
Validation tab: Back to Index
This tab lets you enable/disable the second validation on your license. To enable your second validation check the check box. To send instructions and a download link to your VA enter their email in the text box and click the Send Instructions button.
If your second validation is active the second license check box will be checked. To disable and reset your second validation, uncheck the check box.
If you didn’t know that your second license was active just uncheck the box and it will be disabled.
You add your affiliate ID’s and API keys on the IDs and API tabs.
ID’s tab: Back to Index
This tab is where you enter your affiliate ID’s. To enter your Amazon ID you would type/paste the id in the Affiliate Id text box, choose the appropriate server in the server drop down at the bottom of the tab and then click the Add button. Your id will show up on the list with a little X you can click to delete if needed.
You can add as many id’s as you have and they will be stored in the tool.
Where to get and how to setup your API keys: Back to Index
API keys give you the ability to collect Amazon product data when AdCrafter can’t collect all the product data by reading the HTML on the product detail page. It does this by using your API keys to connect to the Amazon database and then using the Amazon Stock Identification Number (ASIN) to query the product data.
You will need to apply for your Amazon affiliate API keys through your affiliate dashboard on the Amazon affiliate website. You can follow these steps to get your keys. When you get those keys you can copy/paste them in the API key text boxes this tab. When you apply for your API keys they will be tied to one of your affiliate ID’s.
If you want to get your ShareASale API keys you can follow these steps.
When you copy your api keys from the Amazon webpage you will want to paste them into notepad and make sure there aren’t any trailing spaces. Then test them in the Amazon Product Advertising API ScratchPad.
When you have your keys clean and tested you can paste them into the text boxes on this tab.
API keys tab:
This tab is where you enter your Amazon, Walmart and ShareASale API keys. Just select what server the keys are for, paste your clean tested keys into the Public Key and Secret Key text boxes and click the Save button.
To remove the keys click the Clear button.
Note: If you are using both the US and UK servers you will need to enter your keys for both sites. Use the same process you used for your first set of keys and select the other server.
This is where you validate AdCrafter when you purchase it. The first time you open the app this tab is displayed for you to enter your validation email and click the Validate button. When the app verifies that your email is in our validation database the email text box will gray out and you will see the Amazon site in the Browse Search tab.
The small blue question icon is a link to the online help for the validate tab.
This tab is where you will find links to the AdCrafter About, FAQ, Help, Request Support and Rewards Points Feedback pages.
About: About AdCrafter and credits for included code libraries.
AdCrafter FAQ: A link to the Frequently Asked Questions on our website. I’ve included the questions and answers to all the ‘standard’ things customers ask when they are starting out with AdCrafter.
AdCrafter Help: This is the online version of this manual that is linked to from the small help icons inside the app.
So if you’ve got a question while you’re working on the Browse Search tab you can click the little blue question mark on that tab and it will take you to the select browse search on this help page.
Request Support: This is the link to our request support web form. Filling out that form with your validation email, subject and a description of the issue then clicking the submit button will send us a support email. I personally answer all support emails with in twenty four hours.
Rewards Points Feedback: Looking back on AdCrafters development path I realized that our best feature improvements have come from suggestions our current customers have made.
So I created this Rewards Point system so customers that suggest improvements to our tools could be rewarded a little. To start the rewards points will be able to be redeemed for discounts on our other tools and premium plugins. But if there is enough customer interest we’ll add IM Workbench pens and tee-shirts 🙂
To access this suggestion form you need to click on the Rewards Points Feedback link on the Help tab. That will take you to the suggestion for and populate it with your validation email so you will be automatically credited for your suggestion.
How the API Search tab works: Back to Index
The API search tab provides a much faster way to collect product data.
Note: ShareASale only works with the API search so you can’t use the Browse Search tab to collect ShareASale products.
Using this tab you can do keyword searches directly against Amazons API data source, which by-passes all of the clicking back and forth in the browser search results. Then you can just scroll down through the results and click the Add button on the products you like.
It works like this.
When you launch AdCrafter you’ll see the API Search tab.
Clicking on that tab will display the API Search window.
The controls are easy to use.
- Select a category, if you want to narrow your searches down to a particular Amazon category.
- Type or paste your keyword phrase into the keywords box.
- Click the Search button.
- Scroll down the list of products and Add the ones you like to the product list side of the API window.
- If you need more info about a product the More Info button will open the product detail page in your browser.
Amazon limits API queries to returning ten products for each query but there is a Load More button after the tenth product.
Clicking that will add ten more products to the product search results side if the window but keep the prior products on the list.
As you add products to the product list they are removed from the product search results.
As you can see the product list has the same product panes as the Product List tab
so you can drag the products into the order you want or you can use the up and down arrows on the right side of the product pane to move your products around.
You can delete the product from the list by clicking the little red X. You can also edit the product info here but that would probably be easier on the Product List tab.
How Browse Search tab works: Back to Index
AdCrafter is built around a full-featured embedded browser. This browser functions like your favorite desktop browser. All the navigation controls work as you would expect: arrows for page back, page forward and a Go type arrow on the right side of the address bar.
Note: ShareASale only works with the API search so you can’t use the Browse Search tab to collect ShareASale products.
The browser “Favorite’s” dropdown (marked with a white star in an orange background at the end of the URL address box) is in the right top corner of the browser. It is programmed to show six favorites:
- Amazon CA – Search for products on the Canada site.
- Amazon DE – Search for products on the German site.
- Amazon IN – Search for products on the India site.
- Amazon UK – Search for products on UK site.
- Amazon US – Search for products on US site.
- Amazon CA – Search for products on the Canada site.
- Walmart US – Search for products on the Walmart US site.
- And an Add current page selection so you can add your own favorites.
The Add current page functions like you would expect.
There is also a home page button and Set current page as home page drop down:
that work like you would expect them to.
Multiple Browser Tabs:
We have added the ability to have multiple browser tabs so you can have six product detail pages in the Browse Search window at once.
First make sure the Browser Tabs Enabled check box is checked on the Settings > General tab.
To open extra windows you click on the little plus sign by the first tab.
This adds another tab to the right of the existing tab.
You can do this five times, for a total of six tabs open at once. The product tool bar default position is replicated as new browser tabs are opened.
Note: The extra tabs will open with the same search as the primary tab. That allows you to do a product search in the main tab and then replicate that search results across all of the tabs as you open them. So you can find a product search results that contains lots/all of the products you want to add to your template, open five more tabs and then switch to those tabs and click the Add Product button for each product you want on your list.
That saves the time spent clicking on the product detail page and then click the back arrow to go back to your original search so you can navigate to the next product detail page.
To collect products browse to the site you want to collect products from and then use the Select an ID drop down in the top right corner to select the aff ID you want in your affiliate links.
Using the Browse Search tab, search Amazon,Walmart or Zazzle for the products you wish to use in your product html:
Click on the image of a product to bring up the product details page.
Click the blue Add button, in the top left corner of the browser window, to add the product to the Product List tab.
In the bottom right corner of the browser window you will see that the products selected icon has incremented by one to confirm your selected product has been added to the product list.
Continue to add products until you have enough to fill the template you are building.
If you try to add a product you have already placed on the product list the notification pop-up will advise the product is already in the list.
You can add up to thirty products to the list. When filling the template only the required number will be used. A small Image Template will load with the first, or top, six items. You may then delete the first six items, build another six item module from the next six on the list and so on.
How Product List tab works: Back to Index
This tab is where the products are stored when you click the Add button on the Browse Search. Each product is added into its own pane so you can edit, move it up or down on the list and delete a single product. The order the products are in this tab is the order they will be in on your finished module template HTML.
Product List tool bar:
- Add New button. Inserts an empty product pane so you can copy/paste in product info.
- Clear button. Clears all product panes from Product List tab.
- Clicking the Save Current Session button saves any product(s) left on the list so they will be available the next time you use AdCrafter.
- Clicking the Load Previous Session button loads the products you saved back into the list.
- Add from ASIN text box and button. Lets you collect product data from the Amazon API using just the ASIN number.
Each product has four text boxes.
- Alt tag text.
- Product URL with your affiliate ID number at the end.
- Image URL, modified to work with the SPQ template.
- Product description. This is the text displayed below the product image on the templates.
AdCrafter automatically cleans single quotes (and several other control characters) from the alt tag text but you still want to check to be sure there isn’t anything that will mess up your alt tags because that will mess up the rendering of the HTML when you copy the module HTML to your page or post.
Each product pane has three small buttons on the right side.
- The blue up arrow will move the pane one position up on the list.
- The blue down arrow will move the pane one position down on the list.
- The red X button is the delete button.
When you are finished collecting your products click on the Product List tab and verify that the products have your affiliate ID inserted and that they are in the order you want to place them on your post or page.
Note: The affiliate ID you have selected in the Affiliate Setting menu will display on the Select an ID drop down face plate.
Note: You want to verify that your affiliate link is correctly placed on the product links in the panes. This is how you get paid from Amazon so you need these links to be correct.
If you want to change the order of the products in your list, you can use the blue up and down arrows in the right side of each product pane.
Or you can ‘grab’ the product pane by the number on the left hand side and drag it to the desired location.
If you wish to edit the product descriptions or alt tag text you may do that in the respective text boxes. When you click out of the box the new data is automatically saved.
Add from ASIN:
If you have a list of ASIN numbers for products you want to collect you can use the Add from ASIN box on the title bar in the tab. To use that just paste your asin number in the text box.
And click the button. The product data will be pulled from Amazon’s server using your API keys. If you can’t find all the product data in the Browser you can copy the ASIN number from the product URL and use the Add from ASIN button to retrieve that product’s data.
You can also collect multiple products at a time by pasting a comma separated list of ASIN numbers into the Add from product ID box and clicking the button.
So you make a list of ASIN numbers that look like this:
Paste that list into the Insert asin here box and click the button. AdCrafter will query the Amazon ECS servers and pull back all of the products on your list. The product list will hold up-to thirty products.
When you’re comfortable with the product information and affiliate links, click on the Edit Module tab.
How Edit Module tab works: Back to Index
The Edit Module tab is where you load your selected products into the template(s) you want to use on your site.
The inspiration for these templates (and really for AdCrafter) came from Erica Stone and her Squid Pro Quo course. She has graciously allowed us to use/modify/update and expand on those templates as they have evolved into the templates you see in AdCrafter today.
Erica’s Squid Pro Quo product is no longer available but her PinFabulous Affiliate product is not only very effective but it’s a lot of fun also. Erica created a new AdCrafter template for PinFabulous Affiliate and that template is included when you upgrade/purchase v2.1.
There are two types of templates in AdCrafter v2.0. The basic template pack that has been used in earlier versions of AdCrafter/SquidCrafter and built-in templates that enable additional formatting options.
Standard Base Templates:
There are three base templates included in your delivery files along with many variations that were created by Leiif Aurumsonn and are loaded automatically by AdCrafter:
The Intro Module Template does not include any products. This template is for text to include in an intro module.
The Small Image Template includes an intro text box for your written content and six Amazon products laid out in two rows of three products.
The Large Image Template includes space for your written product description and one Amazon product.
Click on the Text Templates drop down and choose the template you want to use on your page or post.
Click the Fill Template button and your products will be loaded from the Products List tab.
To add your intro content to the text templates you can use the Content drop down on the Edit Module tool bar.
Just type/paste your content into the intro text box and click the Fill Template button and it will be inserted into your template. If the selected template has editable product fields there will be a content box for each of those fields also.
The built-in template buttons are on the center right side of the Edit Module tool bar.
Use the Template Layouts drop down to select the template you want.
And the Template Styles drop down to select a starting template format.
So the 3×1 layout
will give you this.
And the square corner drop shadow 1 px border style
Now that you have a built-in template populated you can use the text, background, border, shadow, image buttons and custom buttons controls on the left margin tool bar.
Using the text formatting options you can control the text size and color and you can add bold or italics to the text. The text controls affect all of the text on the template.
The background control lets you set the page and product background colors
The border formatting lets you control the weight of the border, add radius’s to the border and lets you select the color and style of the border.
The shadow formatting options let you choose the position, blur, spread, color and style of the drop shadow.
The image buttons control allows you to change the images buttons that your selected template uses.
Just open the control and click on the image button you want to use with your selected template.
Add custom image buttons: Back to Index
You can add your own image buttons by clicking on the Add Button button, pasting the url of your custom button in the Button Image URL box and clicking the Add button.
Custom text buttons work the same except you add your own text and style the button with the text, background, border and drop shadow controls. So just type the text you want on your button in the Insert Button Text box and style it with the controls below.
Built-in template styles:
The basic template styles are:
Content Drop Down:
We have added a Content drop-down that works with the built-in templates. This tool lets you type or paste in your content and then inserts that text into the html without having to worry about line breaks or getting it in the right spot in the html.
That Content button is on the Edit Module tab here:
To use it you just click inside the appropriate box and insert your content.
Intro text will be inserted in the intro module and the intro (top) content box on most of the template.
Product text will be inserted in the product text box on the Feature Left, Feature Right, 3X1 and 2X1 templates. The Product Info box is only used with the templates that have a text box for a product description
How to ‘Save’ the templates styles you want to reuse.
If you format a template and want to save it to use again just do this.
- Collect your products, choose the template layout and style the template with your new format.
- Click the Template Styles drop down and enter a name for your custom templates in the Style Title box.
- Click the Save Current button and your template will be added to the template menu below the Style 6 template.
- The next time you use the Template Styles drop down you will have a right side scroll bar so you can scroll down and see your saved styles.
- To delete a custom saved style just hold your mouse over the template and click the little X in the top right corner.
The Show HTML button
will display the template html so you can edit it directly.
For the platforms that limit the amount of test in a template we’ve included a character count display on the code bar that shows how many text characters are in the template.
We have also implemented code colorizing for the html in the code window so it’s much easier to see where the different elements are and where to make your edits.
To put line breaks in your content you can place your cursor where you want the new line and click the button on the code bar.
Make any edits that are required to make the module look good. Then click the Copy Code button.
Which copies all the product html to your clipboard.
If you mess something up you can reload the products into the template by clicking the Fill Template button and the product data will be pulled in again and the template reset to the default code again.
How Module Preview tab works: Back to Index
Click on the Module Preview tab and the populated template will be displayed in a variable width window enabling you to make a last visual check before you copy the HTML to your post.
This window is adjustable so you can adjust the width of the preview module to match the width of your page and then see how your templates display at that width. When you close AdCrafter the last used width is saved. This becomes the default width and will remain so until manually changed.
If some aspect of your layout needs to be adjusted click back to the Edit tab, fix it and check the preview again. If everything looks good click the “Copy Code” button at the top right corner and the module HTML is copied to your clip board. You’re done with that module.