I don’t know if this is old news, but I recently upgraded my adblockplus addon for Firefox (I am running FF8) and noticed that its Easylist filter (which I use by default) is blocking Clickbank hoplinks IF they open in a "new" window. The plugin seems to block these links based on two grounds: they are affiliate links from Clickbank, and that they are "popups" (since they open in new windows). See the screenshot below:
And I was wondering why I have fewer Clickbank sales these days! ;)
To get around this problem, I have set all the Clickbank affiliate links on my other blogs (this blog has too few Clickbank links to even bother) to open in same windows (basically I replaced target="_blank" with the target="_self" attribute in the "wp_posts" table of the WordPress database – using this awesome tool search and replace tool)!
The point of this post is – I am really wondering if I am the only one experiencing this kind of "block" or not. I guess I would not have been surprised at all if the addon had flagged only the sponsored links of Clickbank – but hoplinks? Hmm, this convinces me even more to promote Amazon.com stuff. Last time I checked, their affiliate links are NOT being blocked by Adblockplus! :P
I have been using the Adblockplus addon and the Easylist filter for a long time – ever since I have started using Firefox, but this is a first for me. I guess this is probably a new addition in the Easylist filter of Adblockplus addon – I have an older version of the same addon installed in Google chrome but this issue does not occur there!
If you use the plugin I suggested above, be sure to:
a) Backup your database first
b) Delete the plugin file from your server once your job is done (else you might get hacked some day!)
If you don’t want to use the plugin, here is another way to search and replace strings on a WordPress database; to be fair, I would like to add that this tip did not work for me at all; all I got in place of the original links are blank spaces! Again, be sure to backup your database fist before doing anything, or you might just as well (unintentionally) destroy your blog!
On the contrary, I tried the plugin and it worked like a charm! Here is the link again:
The bottom-line is: IF you have Clickbank hoplink on your website opening in a new window, pop-up window or pop-under window, it is time to go ‘clean’ – because the number of Firefox users who use the addon (myself included) is too large to ignore, not to mention that more and more Google chrome users are also catching up on the trend – I mean, who wants ads, right?! On the contrary, if your affiliate link opens in the same window, then you have nothing to worry – at least not for now!
I don’t want to spell doom and gloom, but a day might come when these adblocker add-ons would start blocking affiliate links of ANY kind: no matter what! That would be the day when I would come up with yet another long boring post: "The Death of Affiliate Marketing"! (kidding)
Did you have any similar experience? Feel free to share below.