As a blogger, you will want to put your hands in affiliate marketing program, as you progress. The reason is evident; it is a lucrative way to make money online.
Today, I will give you a few tips on cloak affiliate links.
What is a Cloak Affiliate Link?
As a blogger you will choose an affiliate program that has a product to promote (see my post on Write a Great Product Review for your Blog). You will sign up for their affiliate program; they will give you a link. I call this link “affiliate link” (which will track your commission).
This affiliate link often contains numbers, symbols, and letters. This affiliate link often looks long and ugly.
The process of making this long and ugly URL (affiliate link) short and sweet is called “link cloaking” or affiliate link cloaking.
The purpose of link cloaking has three important results
1.To make the link short and sweet.
2.To successfully promote affiliate products (the affiliate link).
3.For tracking purpose. Knowing how many clicks an affiliate product gets from your post helps to tweak your affiliate marketing strategy.
4.Commission hijacking–if you have profits, scammers will want to steal your profits. Scammers will install malware in your browser and can steal your commission. Link cloaking will prevent this theft to happen on your hard earned commission and links.
Other Important factors of Cloak Link – Keep in mind
As we all know, affiliate links can usually be long and ugly. Which mean they are impossible to remember without doing a copy/paste. This mean that redirects allow you to create short, memorable URLS for them and allow you to access commonly used affiliate links from memory.
Over coming “Ad block” barrier – Some of your visitor or readers may use “Ad block” extension with their browser. This “Ad block extension” can block your affiliate links. To overcome this block extension or barrier, you need to cloak your affiliate links.
Keep in mind, if the merchant decides to change networks or linking methods, you can edit a single redirect instead of needing to edit every instance in which you linked to them throughout your entire site.
Commission hijacking it real and happens. If your product/s are having profits, scammers will want to steal your profits. Scammers will install malware in your browser and can steal your commission. Link cloaking will prevent this theft to happen on your hard earned commission.
Let’s say you decide to change the merchant (affiliate program) you’re using to promote a product, you can edit one redirect instead of needing to edit every instance in which you linked to them throughout your entire site.
Now this is a good one, so keep it in mind: If a handful of the merchants I mention on a regular basis don’t have affiliate programs, I’ll often still cloak the link to their main website. This way, if they ever do launch an affiliate program, I can affiliate all my previous links to them by updating the one cloaked link.
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How to Create a Cloaked Affiliate Link
I have found that there are several affiliate links cloaking plugins on the market. But I use the PRETTY LINK PRO from WordPress (see post on Using WordPress as a platform) WordPress plugin to cloak my affiliate links. You can also use the Free or Lite version but it will not cloak an affiliate link.
If you want the ability to cloak an affiliate link you will need to get the Pretty Link Pro version. The Lite version will not cloak your links. It will create a pretty link.
Ok, so let’s create a Pretty Link
Not: If you want to see a report on links by clicks go to “Group reporting” submenu of Pretty Link in the WordPress dashboard.
Try not to add on too many plug-ins, as we all know it can slow down your website (see post on How to make a website with WordPress) and it can harm SEO. I try to keep my plug-ins to the minimum. Remember, that we done want a slow website. SO, we need to depend on WordPress plugins to successfully run our website.
Although as bloggers we may ignore some other plugins; we definitely cannot ignore affiliate link cloaking plugin for our affiliate marketing online business.
Just a short reminder if you are thinking of learning about affiliate marketing;
For those considering an online business or passive income, visit us at Wealthy Affiliate. This platform provides all the tools, training, resources and hosting, domains etc that are necessary for an online business success. Keep in mind you can try our services for FREE. This free trial provides: a free account, 10 free lessons (training) and 2 free SiteRubix websites.
Please share your thoughts and ideas. What plugins do you run or can’t do with out?