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Do you mask your affiliate links?

Discussion in 'Affiliate Programs' started by Entrep, Jul 25, 2006.

  1. #1
    Do you mask your affiliate links from places like cj/azoogle?

    I ask because some people seem to think that it increases conversion if they are masked to look like non-affiliate links.

    If you do mask, how do you do it (tech details)? Currently I use a .htaccess redirect method to change the domain name only.

    I would also like info on how people can hack my subid to change it to theirs and steal my commissions - just so I am aware of it.
    SEMrush
    Thanks!
     
    Entrep, Jul 25, 2006 IP
  2. xboxundone

    xboxundone Well-Known Member

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    #2
    htacess is the way to go :)
     
    xboxundone, Jul 25, 2006 IP
  3. Entrep

    Entrep Well-Known Member

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    #3
    THat will mask the domain - is there any way to mask the offer=324 etc etc part?
     
    Entrep, Jul 25, 2006 IP
  4. mad4

    mad4 Peon

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    #4
    I redirect CJ links through cart.php to make it look like a shopping cart. It makes no difference to conversions but it means you can block the search engines from viewing cart.php using robots.txt easily. That *may* make them rank you higher.
     
    mad4, Jul 25, 2006 IP
  5. fsmedia

    fsmedia Prominent Member

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    #5
    I use Max Media Manager to manage all my ads, makes it a little easier to manage campaigns etc etc
     
    fsmedia, Jul 25, 2006 IP
  6. xboxundone

    xboxundone Well-Known Member

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    #6
    xboxundone, Jul 25, 2006 IP
  7. drugoon

    drugoon Guest

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    #7
    Simple php header redirects works ok for me :)
     
    drugoon, Jul 25, 2006 IP
  8. GTech

    GTech Rob Jones for President!

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    #8
    I've put together a little example in php you can use. I'm sure there are better methods, or ways to make the code a little better, but it's a start:

    Save the following code as: info.php
    For each URL to redirect to, add a place in the code below.
    Call info.php like: info.php?a=1
    (where 1 is the first affiliate link in your code below, and 2 would be the second and so on.)

    
    <?
    function check_search_engine()
      if ($a == 1) {
        header("Location: http://www.affiliate.com/link.php");
        exit;
      }
    {
    	IF(!isset($_SERVER['HTTP_USER_AGENT']))
    	{
    		$user_agent = '';
    	}
    	ELSE
    	{
    		$user_agent = $_SERVER['HTTP_USER_AGENT'];
    	}
    
    	$search_engines[] = 'Fast';
    	$search_engines[] = 'Slurp';
    	$search_engines[] = 'Ink';
    	$search_engines[] = 'Atomz';
    	$search_engines[] = 'Scooter';
    	$search_engines[] = 'Crawler';
    	$search_engines[] = 'bot';
    	$search_engines[] = 'Genius';
    	$search_engines[] = 'AbachoBOT';
    	$search_engines[] = 'AESOP_com_SpiderMan';
    	$search_engines[] = 'ia_archiver';
    	$search_engines[] = 'Googlebot';
    	$search_engines[] = 'UltraSeek';
    	$search_engines[] = 'Google';
    
    	foreach ($search_engines as $key => $value) 
    	{
    		IF($user_agent != '')
    		{
    			if(strstr($user_agent, $value)) 
    			{
    				$is_search_engine = 1;
    			}
    		}
    	}
    
     	IF(isset($is_search_engine)) 
    	{
    		return TRUE;
     	}
     	else
     	{
    		return FALSE;
     	}
    }
    ?>
    <?
    if (check_search_engine() == TRUE) {
    ?>
    <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN"
    "http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/loose.dtd">
    <html>
    <head>
    <title></title>
    <meta name="robots" content="noindex, nofollow">
    <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1">
    </head>
    
    <body>
    </body>
    </html>
    <?
    } else {
      $a = $_REQUEST['a'];
      if ($a == 1) {
        header("Location: http://www.affiliate.com/link1.php");
        exit;
      }
      if ($a == 2) {
        header("Location: http://www.affiliate.com/link2.php");
        exit;
      }
      if ($a == 3) {
        header("Location: http://www.affiliate.com/link3.php");
        exit;
      }
    }
    ?>
    
    Code (markup):
     
    GTech, Jul 25, 2006 IP
    Entrep likes this.
  9. drugoon

    drugoon Guest

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    #9
    Nice code GTech! Thank you ! :)
     
    drugoon, Jul 25, 2006 IP
  10. Entrep

    Entrep Well-Known Member

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    #10
    Thanks all, especially GTech!
     
    Entrep, Jul 25, 2006 IP
  11. sunchy

    sunchy Active Member

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    #11
    I use redirect in htacess of course
     
    sunchy, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  12. dddougal

    dddougal Well-Known Member

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    #12
    I mask the links like this:

    <a href="URL" onMouseOut="window.status=' ';return true" onMouseOver="window.status='URL to display';return true">Link text</a>

    Works most of the time. I did find you get a better click through rate, i suppose it depends on the market your site aims at.

    Its bizzar that people wont click on the affiliate links isnt it?
     
    dddougal, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  13. axemedia

    axemedia Guest

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    #13
    I use the Onmouseover java snippet to display the url direct to the advertisers site. I learned this trick from adult webamsters, they swear by it. When surfers see a bunch of added code at the end of a URL they are suspisious of the link. Many more people will click when they see http:// www. domain.com versus seeing http:// www. daqocy.com/click-1972915-19239681

    I am considering using the .htaccess redirect to hide the links from SE bots.
     
    axemedia, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  14. agnivo007

    agnivo007 Peon

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    #14
    masked using a short url script
     
    agnivo007, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  15. robdp

    robdp Guest

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    #15
    I do it using mod_rewrite.

    In .htaccess:
    
    RewriteEngine on
    RewriteRule ^offer$ http://blah.com/?id=00000
    Code (markup):
    So domain.com/offer would redirect to the blah.com URL
     
    robdp, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  16. 5starAffiliates

    5starAffiliates Well-Known Member

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    #16
    5starAffiliates, Jul 26, 2006 IP
  17. Entrep

    Entrep Well-Known Member

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    #17
    I get the following error when using GT TECHS code:

     
    Entrep, Nov 16, 2006 IP
  18. smiNICOLETTE

    smiNICOLETTE Peon

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    #18
    ^^^same here.
     
    smiNICOLETTE, Nov 21, 2006 IP
  19. JoelJonathan

    JoelJonathan Peon

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    #19
    Masking plain affiliate text links is pretty straightforward and simple enough - How would you say would be the best way to mask an affiliate link that involves a form and a script to post info on to the affiliate landing page?

    (For example, an insurance quote box affiliate offer where the lead inputs their zip code into the quote box [that is still on your page] and then clicks the submit button to go to the other site that provides the quotes [and of course receives the inputted date {zip code} from the quote box)

    It seems like it should be:

    index.html (or wherever the affilate quote box is located on site)
    <form method="POST" name="getQuoteForm" action="QuoteHome.php" rel="nofollow"><input type="text" name="zip" id="zip" value="Zip Code"
    <input type="submit" value="GO" />
    </form>

    QuoteHome.php
    <?
    $Refby = "affiliate ID here";
    $zip = $_REQUEST["zip"];
    ?>

    And right here some kind of code to then automatically post to the landing page - this is where I am really getting kind of stuck. I think I can grasp generally speaking what I need to do but I just do not have the php experience to really put it together. Any ideas?
     
    JoelJonathan, Dec 15, 2006 IP
  20. JoelJonathan

    JoelJonathan Peon

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    #20
    I thought that maybe this post here had the answer but i get the error message "Warning: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by..."
     
    JoelJonathan, Dec 15, 2006 IP