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Dear Internet Friend,
Hi, My Name is Dustin Davis. Let me tell you about a product
I've developed to thwart attempts to steal commission on my affiliate links...
Many affiliates are getting their commissions
stolen by other affiliates and customers who
are changing their links and removing their affiliate IDs.
For example, lets say you get you are an affiliate for
ProfitCalc. (ProfitCalc is a tool for helping you maximize your earning on your
eBay auctions - created by a good friend of mine, Joel Peterson). If someone
uses your link containing your affiliate ID as shown below, you get paid 60% of
That's great - unless let's say Joe Affiliate has a ClickBank
ID and decides to replace your affiliate ID with his,
thus making the 60% on the commission. This can be very upsetting considering
you spent money advertising to get him to click on the link in the first place!
Let's say in scenario 2 you have Jane User surfing the web
and clicks on one of your affiliate links. She lands on a page like:
Who knows why, but Jane decides to
remove your affiliate ID off the end of the link. Maybe she wants to
see what the real "homepage" is. Maybe she just wants to be mean. Maybe she
thinks the item she is about to purchase will cost less money if it does not go
through and affiliate. Who knows why? But she does it - and changes the link to:
You are left again helping your merchant site receive money
don't get a dime for it! (Scenario 2 is less likely to happen if your
affiliate program stores cookies on the users computer. Cookies allow the
merchant site to remember who revered the user - even months after their initial
and whether the users browser has cookies enabled. Also, many 3rd party tools
block affiliate program cookies.)
There are a number of options to prevent affiliate links from
being changed. As a web master and programmer with over
8 years of experience I know of several
different methods - and I know the pros and cons to each. I have come up with
what I feel is my best defense in protecting
When I set about creating a program for myself and others
there were some goals I had in mind:
Web Based Application
This allows a user to use the tool
anytime, anywhere, from any computer with an
There is nothing to download and install.
Program enhancements are
automatic. Since there is no software to install or
uninstall, ou will always be using the latest and greatest code!
Available across all platforms - Windows, Mac
OS, Linux, Unix, or whatever!
Anyone with a web-browser and internet connection can
use this tool!
Needs to be fast if its web based!
Should work on all
99.9% of visiting
browsers (Seems reasonable doesn't it).
Personalized - branded with your domain name.
Encrypted - Not only cloaked, but encrypted as well.
This prevents even expert programmers from taking the time to change
your affiliate link!
Small output - Cloaked links should take up very
Well, I believe I have hit 100% of my goals here.
LinkCloak.com is a web based tool that allows you to sign on,
enter basic affiliate link information and create your own page to
load to your own domain.
You may have seen similar products on the market. Some of
them take all of FIVE SECONDS to change the affiliate link and hijack your
commission! That is why I built in double-layered
encryptions underneath the affiliate link cloak for extra protection.
While there may be a very small handful of programmers out there that could
manage to find your html source code and decrypt both layers, the effort and
time involved simply would not be worth it - making it
virtually impossible to modify your affiliate link!
How it works
see how LinkCloak.com creates your own pages with cloaked links visit:
Where's my affiliate link?
How will they steal my commission on this one?
Commission thieves and link hijackers don't stand a
is where it gets really good! As a special bonus, if you don't own your domain
name or you would just like a fast shorter link that does not display your
affiliate information you can use
LinkCloak's ShortLink technology!
ShortLink allows you to take a long URL link and convert it
to something much shorter (In the area of area of 22-25 characters!) No more
having links broken by email programs! You can either choose to cloak these URL
or do a simple redirect! Plus, with ShortLink you can can
edit links and track hits received.
As a real life example and initial test of
LinkCloak's short link technology, a while back I posted to a Perl user group I
belong to. I made a recommendation for a good book to get users started learning
Perl. I figured I might as well throw on my Amazon affiliate link as long as I
was going to post. Here is the original link:
Anyone familiar with Amazon associates links could easily
recognize my affiliate id attached (ldspdacom-20). Plus, many email programs
with split long URLs across multiple lines making the link unusable. So I used
LinkCloak to make it shorter:
You can also cloak ShortLinks! The above link would take them to the
site and show the original link URL in their address bar once they arrived at
the destination page. If I wanted to hide that information as well, I could
simply specify this and and give it a page title. All the user would see in
his/her address bar is:
This will take the user directly to the appropriate link!
Sign up now and get the shortest links!
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