“People Are Stealing My Commissions” – No They Are Not!

Posted In: General Chat 

“People Are Stealing My Commissions” – No They Are Not!

This particular subject has been widely misreported and misconstrued for as long as I can remember now. It’s a regular question on forums and in emails:

“What script/software should I use to stop people stealing my commissions”

“My clickbank ID appears in the browser address bar, I’m losing commissions!”

Commission Thief!

Let me first put the world to rights on one point before I continue. What do you think would happen if you replaced my affiliate ID in the URL below with your own and then refreshed the page?


You would probably be thinking that I would lose the commission, because you’ve just got rid of my affiliate ID (elpasso) and changed it to your own, so if all goes to plan, you should get the commission and not me.

Well, don’t take my word for it. Let’s try it now, follow the steps below to see who gets the sale.

1. Click here to go to a sales page via my affiliate link. (Opens in a new window)

2. Click on the “Order Now” button at the bottom of the page

3. On the checkout page, scroll to the bottom of the page and you will see the following:

Moi Affy

You can see that the affiliate for that sale would be “elpasso” – which would be me.

Now try and “steal” my commission, I promise I won’t be offended 😉

Go back to the sales page, change the hop=elpasso in the address bar to hop=yourID and push refresh. Then click the order button and see if the affiliate has been changed.

You’ll notice that it still says “affiliate = elpasso”

Is that enough proof that changing the hop = value doesn’t have any effect on who is awarded the commission?

The hop = value, or variable is passed to the page and can be used by the webmaster to perform his or her own tracking amongst other things, it doesn’t actually set the affiliate cookie. The cookie is set when you click on the link, NOT if you change the hop value and refresh the page.

So with that out of the way, why do we bother to cloak affiliate links?

Well, for me the answer is simple. I don’t cloak my links to stop people from stealing my commissions, I cloak them because they look better! Take a look at the 2 links below and tell me which looks better.



For me, that is the sole reason of cloaking links – they look better. It’s all very superficial, and the raw links may have a great personality but in this case, for me, looks are everything! 🙂

I was going to end this entry with that, but there’s a bit more info that I’ll share with you, and this is what probably causes quite a lot of your commission loses, but unfortunately there isn’t much you can do to stop it.

The 2 main causes for “stolen” commissions:

1. Having an “affiliates” link on the sales page

If you send a customer to a sales page and the customer can see an “Affiliates” link at the bottom of the page, the customer is likely to click on the link, generate their own affiliate link and buy the product through that link instead of yours – simple but true.

2. Malware/Adware **Play spooky music**

Malware/Adware is not only un-ethical, it’s also a pain in the backside to get rid of if you do become infected!

These applications, once activated on your PC can, and will replace any genuine affiliate cookies they find with their own ID. So for example, if your visitor goes to a site via your affiliate link, the malware/adware will detect that your cookie has been placed, and it will replace it with it’s own cookie – meaning you miss out on the sale.

And that brings to an end my extra little “brain fart” (thanks Pat!) for today.

Just one thing left to show/give you now, and that’s a freebie.

Don’t spend lots of money on fancy affiliate link cloakers – you don’t need them. You can easily make your own links, details can be found here and here.

Or, you can download some free affiliate link cloaking software at the location below – it’s 100% free! (The download contains a number of different items, the item to create the affiliate links is called “Affiliate Diamond”)


Feel free to leave any comments or questions.


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