Smart External Link Click Monitor [Link Log]


The Smart External Link Click Monitor Plugin allows you to track which external links your visitors click on.

Data are stored on your server. No external service needed.

Retired Plugin

Development, maintenance and support of this plugin has been retired in october 2023. You can use this plugin as long as is works for you.

There will be no more updates and I won’t answer any support questions. Thanks for your understanding.

Feel free to fork this plugin.


The Link Log Plugin changes all your links to external sites. For example is changed to something like The link change takes place when a post or page is displayed. Internal links to pages on your domain are not changed, also URLs not starting with http or https are not changed (tracking of tel URLs can be activated optionally). Also attributes (like class or target) are not touched. There is no need to change anything. All links in all posts and pages are changed automatically in front end. When editing a post or page in back end all links appear unchanged.

Settings (optionally)

In ‘Settings’ -> ‘Link Log’ you can change several settings.

Plugin Privacy Information

  • This plugin does not set cookies
  • This plugin stores IP-addresses of visitors in your database (see below)
  • This plugin does not send any data to external servers

As of version 3 the Link Log plugin encrypts the visitors IP-address before storing it into the database. The IP-addresses are used exclusively to identify multiple clicks from the same IP-address and exclude them from counting. Encrypting the IP-addresses does not change the functionality. The encrypted IP-addresses can not be decrypted.

If you’ve used this plugin already before version 3 your database contains unencrypted IP-addresses. In that case a message will be shown in WordPress Admin. The plugin makes it possible to encrypt the already existing data. The message can not be ignored. As soon as there are no more unencrypted data, the message disappears.

As of version 3 this plugin is fully GDPR compliant as soon as you encrypted the already stored data.


This plugin is compatible with ClassicPress.

For Theme Developers

There are two functions you can use in your theme files:

get_linklog_url( $url ) to get the tracking URL,
e.g. <?php $google = get_linklog_url( '' ); ?>

the_linklog_url( $url ) to echo the tracking URL,
e.g. <a href="<?php the_linklog_url( '' ); ?>" target"=_blank">Google</a>


  • General Settings
  • Advanced Settings
  • Automation Settings
  • Analysis Page Customization
  • Adding Link Descriptions
  • Link Click Analysis
  • GDPR Warning
  • Encryption of existing Database Entries


Do I have to change the links?

No, all your links to external sites are changed automatically.

Will the changed links appear in the Editor?

No, the links are changed every time when a post or page is displayed – the original links are left unchanged.

What about all the odd characters in the generated links?

Those characters represent the encrypted link. The encryption produces different results on different websites. Using uncoded links for redirection could be used in phishing attacks to get users to visit malicious sites without realizing it by “hijacking” a reputable domain, e.g.

Will this work with a Caching Plugin?

Yes, but if you change the parameter name you have to clear the cache.

Will the plugin work with my existing Theme?

The plugin should work with all Themes.

Will the plugin work on WordPress Multisite?

Yes, in a Multisite installation the plugin stores the link clicks per Blog.


Sseeboaseka 10, 2022 1 reply
The Link Log plugin works great, and doesn't slow down my site at all! Five 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
Ogwekkumi (Mukulukusa) 10, 2020 1 reply
Tut was es soll! Ich habe es installiert, nachdem ich festgestellt habe, dass die Klickrate eines Affiliate Programms nicht alle Klicks zählt. Dieses Plugin bestätigt dies nun! Schön wäre eine Export Möglichkeit zu csv oder so, allerdings passt das auch schon so... Gute Arbeit Peter!
Kafuumuulampawu 8, 2019 1 reply
Thanks Pete! It's easy to use and no configuration necessary. Is it possible to see which pages links are coming from?
Mukutulansanja 15, 2019 1 reply
I couldn't for the life of me get Google Analytics to track external links. This plugin gives a simple way to do just that, locally. Feature request however, would be to include a date picker to pull stats from vs set blocks of time like "last month" so we can see how links perform in compared periods of time (i.e. June 2017 vs June 2018).
Read all 8 reviews

Contributors & Developers

“Smart External Link Click Monitor [Link Log]” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.


“Smart External Link Click Monitor [Link Log]” has been translated into 3 locales. Thank you to the translators for their contributions.

Translate “Smart External Link Click Monitor [Link Log]” into your language.

Interested in development?

Browse the code, check out the SVN repository, or subscribe to the development log by RSS.


5.0.2 (2022-10-01) FINAL VERSION

  • removed all links to webiste
  • removed request for rating
  • removed manual

5.0.1 (2022-10-19)

  • Settings interface adapted to my other plugins

5 (2019-03-10)

  • plugin renamed from link-log to Link Log
  • UI improvements
  • code improvement

4 (2018-04-30)

  • incorrect GDPR compliance alert fixed

3 (2018-04-14)

  • encrypt IP-addresses for data protection reasons
  • use 303 redirect to avoid browser caching
  • priority of filter the_content changed
  • minor code- & UI-improvements

2.4 (2017-11-16)

  • faulty display in WP 4.9 fixed

2.3 (2017-07-03)

  • redesigned admin interface
  • code improvement
  • 12 new bots added to detection list

2.2 (2016-10-21)

  • made plugin ready for translation
  • removal of needless characters from encrypted URLs
  • faster encryption and decryption
  • optional tracking of telephone links

2.1 (2015-12-11)

  • Closed SQL Injection vulnerability

2.0 (2015-12-10)

  • Closed HTTP Response Splitting vulnerability
  • Closed Open Redirect vulnerability
  • Menu item title for Link Click Analysis page is now customizable
  • Page title for Link Click Analysis page is now customizable
  • Customizable link descriptions to show on Link Click Analysis page instead of URLs

1.4 (2015-04-28)

  • Option to add rel=”nofollow” to links
  • Option to track only specific posts/pages
  • Complete documentation accessible from back end
  • Click Analysis now accessible also for Editors, not only for Admins
  • Click Analysis now uses standard WP table
  • Filtering of results

1.3 (2014-10-26)

  • Works now with WPML
    The WPML Plugin changes the Home URL by adding the language to it – Link Log now can handle that to work with WPML and other Plugins that change the Home URL (thanks to GREIFF for testing)
  • Performance Improvement
    The browser is now forced to redirect to the target URL before the data is stored to the databse
  • remove trailing slashes
    To avoid duplicate entries for e.g. and all trailing slashes are removed now
    Update Notice: when updating to version 1.3 all trailing slashes from all existing entries in the database are removed automatically

1.2 (2014-09-19)

  • Omit search engines and other bots

1.1 (2014-06-25)

  • Omit multiple clicks from same IP

1.0 (2014-02-20)

  • Initial Release