How To Cloak Affiliate Links in 3 Simple Steps

August 14 2012
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Recently I learned a simple and cool way to Cloak Affiliate Links.

Those of you who have experience with affiliate marketing already know what an affiliate link looks like.

For those of you who don’t, they look a little something like this…

www.companyname.com/1101/affiliateID

The problem here isn’t just that affiliate URLS are ugly. Affiliate links also have low click conversions rates compared to cloaked affiliate links.

So, here’s how you cloak an affiliate link in 3 simple steps

 1. Create a folder in your HTML directory

This should be something like http://yourdomain.com/recommends/ or http://yourdomain.com/likes/

2. Create a folder within the folder

This folder should be named after the company you’ll be promoting. Let’s say you became an affiliate of Honda and you’re going to promote Honda products (don’t think Honda really has an affiliate program but let’s just use this as an example). We already created a folder called “recommends” and now we’re creating a new folder within our “recommends” folder named “honda.”

3. Create an index.php file and save it in the company folder

Create an index.php file and put the code below in the file. Put your affiliate link in the appropriate place.

<?php

header( ‘Location: PUT AFFILIATE URL HERE’ ) ;

?>

The file is now saved at…

http://yourdomain.com/recommends/honda/index.php

Now, whenever someone clicks a link or goes to…

http://yourdomain.com/recommends/honda/

they’ll be redirected to your affiliate url and you’ll get a commission

Pretty cool, right?

 

15 Responses to “How To Cloak Affiliate Links in 3 Simple Steps”

  1. Nate Shivar 16 August 2012 at 9:08 am Permalink

    Pretty neat to know the behind the scenes. I’ve always used plugins like SimpleURL on my WordPress sites – which I believe just does exactly what you describe (url/go/affiliate).

    • Jordan Fried 16 August 2012 at 4:49 pm Permalink

      Thanks Nate! I thought it was interesting myself and I’m glad I shared it!

  2. DeboraHumphries 19 December 2012 at 1:52 am Permalink

    Thank you Jordan for the tutorial. I sincerely appreciate you. I hate depending on plugins, as I want full control. :)

  3. Lemuel 3 January 2013 at 8:44 pm Permalink

    Good option for link cloaking, but will it not violate Google’s rule? Thanks. I’ll try this.

  4. marie 21 April 2013 at 1:34 am Permalink

    Just what I’ve been looking for, looks simple enough for a non techie like me. Thanks for the info.

  5. Pam 12 May 2013 at 6:04 pm Permalink

    Hello, just wanted to tell you, I enjoyed this post.
    It was funny. Keep on posting!

  6. Sam 25 May 2013 at 2:17 am Permalink

    Im a technical idiot. May I know how to clooak clickbank id without a website ? I tried to search info online but most advice given requires one to have a website and is not detail enough on how to do it ?

    • Jordan Fried 26 May 2013 at 10:27 am Permalink

      You can use a URL shortener if you’d like but I’d recommend buying a domain and setting it up using the method I outlined in this post.

      Hope this helps,
      Jordan

  7. Kate 13 June 2013 at 2:09 pm Permalink

    Hi Jordan!

    I am really struggling with masking. Do you offer a service where I could give you a few links and you mask them for me for a fee? :)

    Thank you for your time!

    Kate

    • Jordan Fried 25 June 2013 at 11:52 am Permalink

      Hi Kate,

      Masking is really not that difficult! Unfortunately I do not offer a service where I mask links for a fee but if you are really having trouble you can go ahead and use a service like http://bit.ly

      Cheers,
      Jordan

  8. Angel 1 August 2013 at 6:07 pm Permalink

    Pretty cool it is once you learn how it do it! After searching and trying the different methods of cloaking your affiliate links, I find this was the easiest way to learn it!

    I don’t know if it was the teacher or the student that made it hard to learn, but thank you for teaching your method!

    Angel


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