Cloaking Tools
Tool Price Discount  
Keitaro
starts at $25/month PARTNERKIN 20% website
Adspect
starts at $300/Month website
Hide.Click
starts at $145/Month                 
Cloaking.House
starts at $30/month with monthly payment                 
CLOAK IT
starts at $60 per month for monthly plans                 
JustCloakIT
starts at €399/Month or €219/10,000 Clicks                 
NoIpFraud
starts at $57/Month                 
Lasso
starts at $33/Month                 
ClickGum
starts at $9/Month                 
Rebrandly
starts at $24/Month                 
ThirstyAffilates
starts at $79.50/year                 
Pretty Links
starts at $99.50 per year                 

10+ Best Cloaking Tools [2024]

As affiliates, we tend to use many different links every day to get our jobs done. Because you know, as they say, work smarter, not harder. Another such tool is an affiliate link cloaking tool. As the name suggests, these tools cloak links, but what exactly are they, how do they work, how can you use one, and for what purpose? This is exactly what we're going to discuss in this article, so you can use the tools introduced here in a better way. And perhaps you are not familiar with the benefits of cooking your links. So we can learn all about that here.


What Is Affiliate Link Cloaking

As affiliates, we sign up on affiliate programs and networks only to receive an affiliate link that is going to be our affiliate ID, and using that ID or link, we advertise our products. Sometimes, the program or network allows you to build custom links with your affiliate ID from any product or page on their website. So generally, there are some links with your specific idea on them, and they only work for you.

The moment you receive this link, you are eligible to post about any of your products on your affiliate website, social media, forums, or really any other place you like. However, these links usually are very long and they don't really look good when you post them. Plus, when somebody wants to click on the link, they might include your affiliate ID or the word affiliate in them. Anyhow, it's better if you somehow managed to post your affiliate ID in a shorter way. And you might think of link shorteners, which is good, but not when it comes to 1 000 affiliate links on your website. That is manual work, and you don't really want to spend your precious hours shortening your links.

Instead, you want to use an affiliate link cloaking tool that allows you to automatically cloak your links and make them seem like they belong to a page on your own website. These links are usually going to be much shorter than the original affiliate link, and they are going to look even better customized with your own branding.

Take this example. Here is what the link to an affiliate product directly copied from the affiliate programs website might look like: 

https://affiliate-program.com/products/category/clothes/women/578975765765467/5876434213489/ref_id=?475687689997

And this is how a cloaked affiliate link using an affiliate link cloaking tool might look like: 

https://yourdomain.com/product

As you can see, by hovering on a link, customers will not see the link to an affiliate program or anything like that. What they see is just another page on your own website.


Why You Should Use Link Cloaking as an Affiliate

If it's not already obvious from the previous section why you should use a link cloaking service in the first place, here are some more reasons why it is actually beneficial and necessary for you as an affiliate to use a cloaking tool for your links.

Protects your Commissions

The first benefit of a cloaking tool is that it protects your commissions. Nowadays come on many people create malware and cause different affiliate links to turn into their own links by simply chopping off the part where your affiliate ID sets, and replacing it with their own affiliate ID. This way as soon as a customer clicks on your link, the malware can find where the ID goes, and immediately replace it with their own, so they would get the Commission instead of you. So you might even notice that you are getting clicks, and there are events are being registered, but you're just not getting any commissions or track data on the programs tracking tool. Therefore, you cannot see how much money you're making, or whether you're content or links are even converting properly. So there are going to be many misconceptions.

A cooking tool simply covers up your link and prevents the malware from seeing the link and changing the affiliate ID right before the page loads. So, as soon as somebody clicks on an affiliate link on your website that is closed, there are definitely going to open your affiliate link, not anybody else’s.

Makes your Links Simpler

Wouldn't just be much more beautiful if somebody just hovered on your links, and instead of seeing a long link that has no end, your link with your own domain showed up? Of course, these link cloaking tools make your affiliate links much prettier come on simpler, less complicated, and easier to recognize for potential customers. Therefore, they want to click on your CTA's and purchase a product, and all they see is a link in your own website's domain, and not another program named there. This leaves a huge impact on the customer's mind, and it makes them trust you more, even if they end up going to the website and seeing that they've been referred by somebody.

Track your Links

Affiliate cloaking tools make it super easy for you to track your links, your performance, and your analysis. Of course, you would have to pay for an affiliate tracking tool, but when you have it cloaking tool, you actually don't have to use such an affiliate tracker. These cloaking tools give you information regarding your customers' geographical locations, which links are the top most popular links which products are more desired by the majority, and how you should optimize your marketing for the future to drive even more sales.

Improve SEO and CTR

Last but not least, affiliate cloaking tools make your own domain be visible on the legs, which can heavily affect your website's SEO, and sure that you are linking to your own pages a lot, which could also count as inbound links. Besides that, it could improve your clickthrough rate because people see that they are just moving to another page on your website. You might deny it comes up but there is actually a connotation related to being directed to another website, which can frustrate many users if they know it before they click on the link. But obviously, when they reached that website it is too late to regret anything, and plus you are not redirecting them to a faulty or shady website anyways. So clocking tools make your website look cleaner, improve your CTR rate, and your SEO, helping you rank higher on SERP.


What Are Affiliate Link Cloaking Services

now that you know what affiliate link cloaking is, you should know what affiliate link cloaking services and tools are, how exactly they work, and what you are exactly paying for if you are in the first place.

The way affiliate cloaking tools work is pretty simple, and you might even be able to do it yourself manually by spending many hours rebranding all your pages and making them redirect to another website. We have already spoiled, but the way these tools work is that they set up a URL redirect on all the affiliate links on your website automatically. And you get to choose what you want the product tagged to be.

So for example, if you have a link, and you set it up in a certain way to be rebranded to your own domain, the affiliate tracking tool automatically sets up the affiliate link to be the target URL of the URL redirect function. This means that even though it seems like a page on your website is being loaded but that page is actually empty, and at the same time the website is just redirecting to the affiliate URL. There are going to be just a few milliseconds of delay in between here, which is not really noticeable to the potential customers, and the redirect should happen pretty quickly because nothing needs to be loaded on your website but on the program’s website.


How to Choose Affiliate Link Cloaking Services

Now, you have many different affiliate cloaking tools at your service, ready to provide you with quick affiliate link rebranding. But how are you exactly going to choose the best one among the sea of services? There are many services out there, and neither should you have to use several ones. Only one affiliate link cloaking service is going to be necessary and enough for you to achieve all your cloaking needs. Therefore, we have gathered some criteria here for you to decide which affiliate link cloaking tool is the best one for you and why.

Pricing

First and foremost, the pricing probably matters the most, because you might just be a beginner affiliate, and you might not have a ton of budget to spend on a link-cloaking tool. Plus, it is not really the most important thing in your affiliate career anyways. Therefore, you should really be aware of how much you're spending on a monthly basis on these cloaking services, and whether you need to continue paying for them at all. We are also going to mention what features you will get by paying for different plans. Take a look at the following table.

Cloaking tool Pricing
Genius Link Free trial / Up to $13 for 7 000 links
Easy Affiliate Link Free / Premium for $29 for one website
Pretty Links Free / Free trial for Premium version / Premium starting from $79 a year for one website
WooCommerce Cloak Affiliate Links Free
Thirsty Affiliates Free / Premium starting at $79 a year
LinkTrackr Starting at $17 a month to $77
Simple URLs Free

 

How to Use

Of course, there are many different tools out there, and each of them works in a certain way, and that is precisely why they are planned in different ways. Generally, these tools allow you to get your services in a spectrum from manual to automated. The manual version would be for you to enter the exact URL you want for every affiliate link that you're putting on your content. The most automated one would be the tool itself recognizing what the product is, and assigning a short automatic name on your brand for that product. So, if you use thousands of different affiliate links on your website, and you don't feel like manually changing we're specifying the name for each one of those, the automated tools are going to save your life. These automated tools sometimes allow you to have some settings where you can set up different tags for different products, different IDs, etc.

In the same way that there's a spectrum for how you use these tools, there is also a spectrum of how independent these tools are. For example, some of these tools run as plugins on WordPress, Shopify, and any other content management platform you have your website on. There are some other tools that run completely independently on their own domain and their own service, without needing you to install or download anything. So if you're thinking convenience, and you want to have your cloaking tool right on WordPress for you when you're writing an article, go ahead and choose one of those services. But on the other hand, if you want a huge platform with different capabilities, you should just aim for the independent ones.

Extra Features

Now, as we mentioned before link cloaking tools give you the ability to access various information about your links that you normally cannot gain from your affiliate program or network or even your Google Analytics. These cloaking tools give you some more information about your links because they are more optimized. For example, these cloaking tools allow you to see the geographical location of the people who click on your links, find good keywords, track PPC marketing clicks, and several other occasions where you need analytics or data from your links. Therefore, these tools are usually a compact package of many different services related to links in the world of marketing. So if you want to pay for one of these services, and you don't just want to cloak your links come up but you also want to get something more out of it, pay attention to these other features offered by that tool.


How to Use Cloaking Services

If you've already chosen your clocking tool, and now you're looking at your dashboard or the tool, here's how to get started.

First, you should check out if there is any setting section on the tool that allows you to set your preferences regarding cloaking. For example, do you promote several products, what are their SKUs, should the tool automatically assign a name to each product based on the product name itself, etc.

Then, you should try to check whether the program provides automatic link rebranding based on the product name. If it does, then you don't have to do anything, and all you really have to do is create some content or just go test the content you already have on your website to see whether they work. If you actually need to include some information for every link or product, or if you have a list of links that you have to add with their specific rebranding name, just go ahead and do that.

In the end, you want to test the functionality a couple of times, and then start checking the performance by tracking your links.


Conclusion

Affiliate link cloaking services are essential for almost all affiliates. In the world of affiliate marketing though, the realistic way is to see that big affiliate websites usually use these services to protect themselves, drive more sales, establish trust with their audience, and benefit from tracking and SEO optimizations. In any case, the number of independent and small or beginner affiliates using these services is quite low, and that is why these affiliates are usually the target of malware attacks or shady activity. This could also boost your marketing and make your audience think that you actually know what you're doing with your own website. So, if you are a beginner and you're reading this, we recommend that you get a cloaking tool for your affiliate website. Use the tips in this article to find the best one, and get started right away.