If you don’t know how to hide affiliate URL links, you may be driving away your customers. Those long affiliate links filled with random numbers and characters tend to make customers uneasy and wary of your links.
Most people on the web these days know enough to be wary of online scams. Most people will mouse-over a link to see where it goes. If they see a weird looking URL with lots of strange characters, they tend to get nervous and avoid the link.
But what if you want to monetize your blog? Usually the companies and sites that you partner with will give you these long ugly links in order to identify which visitors came from your site. They are a necessary part of affiliate marketing.
The key is to mask or cloak these long affiliate links. When a website visitor hovers their mouse over one of your cloaked links, they will see a shortened URL that looks like just another page on your site. However, when your visitor clicks on one of these links, they will be taken to the external location with your affiliate link embedded in the URL.
If you spend any time searching for information on how to hide affiliate URL links, you will find numerous sites that charge money for this service. However, there is no need to spend any money. You can do it all for free within WordPress.
Assuming that you are running WordPress, there are many good freely available link cloaking plugins. I’ve tried several, but my favorite is one called Pretty Link. It is a free plugin that is really easy to use. You can create any number of cloaked links. It also has a really useful reporting feature that lets you see how many people click on your cloaked affiliate links over time. You can download the plugin via the build in WordPress plugin search feature.