A Simple Way to Use Internal URLs for External Links

Joomla WeblinksThis is the answer to a question we’ve been asked repeatedly:

I’m looking for a Joomla component that will allow me to change outbound links from direct urls into internal urls.

Essentially they’re looking to change a link from http://www.bbc.co.uk to http://www.alledia.com/link/bbc/. The link still goes to the BBC, but it first goes to a url on the webmaster’s own site.

Why Would People Want Internal URLs for Outbound Links?

  1. Affiliates want to protect their affiliate links:
    • They think internal urls are more likely to be clicked than a url that looks like this: http://www.anrdoezrs.net/click-2660093-10423359
    • Some people deliberately avoid clicking on affiliate links
    • There are even rumored to be some computer-based viruses that are capable of inserting the spammer’s affiliate ID into links to popular affiliate programs when people are browsing.
  2. Some webmasters worried about leaking their Google Page Rank to other sites. I am not a big believer in this technique, but I know several people who consider this to be important.

How to Create Internal URLs for Outbound Links

Add the link to your weblinks component. You’ll be given an inbound redirect link.

Click here to see one example in our weblinks component. The links will appear in this format: http://www.alledia.com/weblinks/joomla/

Afterwards you can use a component such as Simply Links to apply that link to all instances of that word on your site. We do this with words such as sh404SEF, SEF Advance, Joomla SEO Club, and even affiliate links such as Joomlashack. Finally, make sure to unpublish your weblinks search mambot or else it may start to clog up your site’s search results.

Other Options

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