Cloaking with Facebook
Facebook traffic arbitrage is a virtuoso art in which you have to tack between constantly updating social network bans, checking moderators and bots, and remembering that the offer must contain useful information for the end user who might become our client. While some topics easily fit into this framework, half of affiliate marketing verticals will not survive on Facebook without cloaking.
That term that we'll cover in more detail in this article and explain whether cloaking should be used in your work, how to do it with «white» and «grey» methods, and why the most popular platforms on the internet consistently use these methods while avoiding liability.
What is a cloak in Facebook traffic arbitrage?
The term is schematically similar to your basic version of the site, just with the advertising stream changed, and more specifically its content. One domain will contain the "white" part of the flow for the moderators and various bots that will check the site for clean advertisements, while the second will contain the real ads for your target audience. The division of traffic is done automatically with the help of services for cloaking, independently evaluating the incoming stream.
At the maximum level, the technique is unequivocally deceptive to the advertising network and prohibited by all companies. This level is often used to sell gray and black products such as drugs. There is no use of aggressive cloaking for more white schemes, because over a short time period your account may be blocked, and the effectiveness of the time, effort, and money spent may not pay off.
In a more familiar to arbitrageurs, the term is open as increasing the attractiveness of links, highlighting relevant content for specific user groups, and automating the advertising process. In other words, attracting additional attention to the offers and there is nothing forbidden about it. For clarity, let's look at both white and grey and even black Facebook offers.
Legal cloaking on Facebook
«White» cloaking aims to improve the offer without harming the users themselves. Whereas grey methods may offer ads whose products have a negative impact on people, white methods, on the contrary, improve our lives and allow us to find the thing we really want to find, and at an attractive price. Moreover, white methods often do not involve cheating the system and are link to:
- The visual component of the links. Short and easy-to-read slogans, pleasing to the eye and clear message - the key to an offer, which one wants to click on
- Automation of affiliate links. Sometimes, a small blog can have a good income, even with 5-10 links, but cloaking allows you to expand the array to 500 or even 5000 links, distributing them automatically. Convenient and practical, isn't it?
- Increased revenue protection. There are frequent cases of theft of affiliate commissions, for example, by identity theft. Cloaking hides the identity of the site owner and helps avoid fraud.
As for specific examples - there are many, so let's start with an easy one:
- Adapting a single page or an entire site to the language field of a potential client. You only need to count GEO users and he will be able to see the ad in his native language, which greatly increases the chances not only to understand but also to click
- Age factor. It is fundamental to advertising, because certain topics may be of interest to a strictly adult segment, not to mention the legal restrictions. For example, if we are talking about a shop of car parts, driving a vehicle is available only to persons over 18 years, which means that it makes sense to prohibit a younger audience to go to the page. If the theme of our offers is general and covers a significant age range, then several landing pages we can make depending on the type of our target audience. One could be for teenagers, another for an adult audience, a third for a certain country, and a fourth and fifth would separate users by gender.
- Limitations for users with a VPN. It is quite possible to put such people in a separate group, but often even this does not make sense - a conditional resident of Russia, disguised as a resident of the United States, the system can be perceived as a premium GEO with an increased price, although the real rate is significantly lower.
Now we have more or less figured out what a cloaking in arbitrage in the legal sense of the term is. As you can see, there is nothing forbidden in these methods and they are freely used even by the biggest companies to promote offers.
However, it is far from always the case that advertising or the ways in which it is disseminated can avoid sanctions from Facebook. For example, if your face cream is shown to an audience under 18 at the same time, where the offer talks about the benefits aimed specifically at young skin, and to an audience of 50+, where users told the same thing, but already regarding older skin types. This is contrary to the rules of the advertising platform and this is where the grey and black methods of Facebook cloaking come into play, which we will discuss in a moment.
Illegal cloaking on Facebook
These are prohibited methods are still popular in traffic arbitrage. They are effective, some are durable, but soon or later, everyone can be blocked. Whether it is worth the risk is up to you to decide.
More to the point, this category includes swapping out the click-through page for moderators and ad site bots, who will see the standard content and skip it. Ordinary users clicking on the link will see a completely different type of ad that would be unlikely to pass inspection. Even such variant can be «black» if it involves the distribution of gambling, drugs, intimate services and the like. Perhaps such traffic does make a good profit, but it is up to everyone to choose between morality and profit.
From theory to action - how do you set up your website?
The first stage of the work is to decide on the objectives of the landing page, and more precisely on their number. If we plan to limit traffic only to a certain group of people, then one page is enough, which is the leaderboard of the offer, or use your pre-landing page, if the advertiser has not provided a high-quality resource.
The second option - if there are several restrictions, and they concern, for example, the language, the user's device, his gender and so on. The difference is small and it in the number of the landing pages. If desired, you can implement a third option, in which we show the administration of the advertising site of one page, and users of the other. In that case we will need two sites on different domains - White Page for bots, which has a high level of trust for Facebook, and Black Page with gray and black content for users.
When the pages are ready, connect the domains and affiliate links to a cloaking service. There you can also set the parameters for dropping site visitors and more, depending on the capabilities of your service.
How does Facebook fight for legal traffic arbitrage?
Facebook is one of the largest social networks and platforms in the world, which is responsible not only for its own actions but also for the actions of users. Illegal cloaking hits the company hard, causing it to lose the trust of honest advertisers and share value. What causes platform developers to constantly improve the AI and build new ways to verify the offers.
According to the latest information from Rob Goldman, Facebook's VP of advertising, about 3,000 ad campaigns are block every month. Some of these are identified by user complaints, sometimes the bots themselves find inconsistencies, as they can now arrange to re-check the offers at any time.
All of this once again gives us pause for thought - is it worth trying to run the system and risk profits and accounts, or can we achieve what we want by white collar means? The answer remains with each of us.