Have You Heard of the Link Thieves? Beware of Them If You Are Planning to Join an Affiliate Program

By Charles Hopkins Published 08/30/2006 | Affiliate Programs

So you have put a great deal of sweat into creating a couple of websites with the intention of gaining some affiliate commission out of it only to thrown at the wits ends by the repetitive link thieves? Yes stealing of links and eating up the cream that is due to you have become rather a common cause of concern among the affiliates these days. So how can you ensure that nobody can cut your pocket when you are not taking notice? Read the article below to know about some practical ways to prevent the link thieves from stealing your affiliate links to transform the designation to their own particular affiliate numbers.

How does it happen? Take a typical example of link thieves of the link directories. There are many link directories in the web. Now sometime it happens that customers purchase under their own link and deprive them of the commission that is due to the directory. How do these thieves manage to do so? There are mainly two ways of doing this:

The first method is known as affiliate link substitution.  All affiliate URL contains a vendor ID. If this vendor ID gets known, it can be replaced by that of the affiliate ID of the link thief.

The second method involves signing up with an affiliate program after getting to know about it from any product site. Then he makes the purchase himself.

But do not worry; there is a really easy solution to this problem which is called link cloaking. The process simply involves creating a new designation for your links. This can be done in a number of ways:

You can shorten the length of the link URL. That way it will also be easy for you to remember them.

You can also hide the main URLs containing the affiliate IDs of the links in question.

You can also use mysterious hosting URLs to make them more clickable.

For availing link cloaking services you have to visit the websites of any of the service producers. You can find many; just stage a search by typing these words, link cloaking services. You will come to know from their websites, the exact procedure to get a cloaked link.

Once you get the cloaked link, copy it and use it for your affiliate marketing purposes. Upon clicking on the new link, the visitor would be taken to your original affiliate link and ultimately to the affiliate merchant's sales page.

So go with time and consider using a cloaked link instead of an affiliate ID provided by the merchant. They can not be distinguished by the original and you won't have to worry of having your link stolen as your original affiliate ID would be out of reach of the link thieves.