How To Make More Money From Google’s Firefox referral program

June 1, 2006 by  


Have you ever tried to make money from Google’s Firefox referral by placing the referral buttons and links on your pages?

The truth is most people make very little money from this unless the page where the buttons/links are located talks about Web browsers or there are already tons of visitors actively looking for free and open source software at your site.

So how can you make money from Google’s Firefox referral program?

Well, four politically-oriented friends who care about open source software came up with an idea to help you convert IE users browsing your sites to Firefox more effectively.

To get started, simple download and install a free script available from This script works by automatically showing a message inviting every IE user to switch to Firefox.

According to them it’s a campaign to spread Firefox, piss off Microsoft and get paid. Sounds good? Read on…

If most of your users use Internet Explorer (you should be able to tell this by looking at your site statistics), then you’ll likely make more money from Firefox referrals since you have more people to convert.

Once installed, you can select one of the three settings to help you decide how much force you want to use to convince your users to switch away from the ‘dark side’: Gentle, Semi-serious and Dead-serious.

While installing the script seems like a good idea, I wouldn’t do it if it annoys majority of my users. If you still want to give it a try, I suggest the Gentle encouragement setting would keep things under control.

I haven’t tried this myself but I might give it a try at my non-tech forums soon.

Demo and further info available at

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Comment by ShaolinTiger
2006-06-01 13:50:26

I considered it a while back too, do let us know if it pays off.

Comment by korokmu
2006-06-01 17:42:04

It will chase your visitors away. Forcing is not a good method. Why don’t you just suggest the IE users to download Firefox. View my page using IE, and you will see the link on the very top of the page. The best thing is, make it yellow. If IE blocks pop-up, you will be see a yellow box at the top and tend to close it. In this case, more users will be aware of your ads.

Comment by Gaman
2006-06-01 19:04:01

ShaolinTiger: I will

korokmu: Yes, I think that’s what you get for setting 1.

I wouldn’t use it on my tech sites though, in the case of for example, 55% of my users are already using Firefox to browse this blog.

Comment by LcF
2006-06-01 19:53:36

well, it against Google AdSense TOS because it ask visitors to CLICK on the referral button and focus highlight about it.

Why I know? I have email AdSense about this kind of tricks.

Comment by Markus
2006-06-02 02:15:11

I have over 80% IE users. I installed a small php snipplet to check the browser and if it is IE, the user will see a big red message. No forced click, just a big recommendation.

Try it yourself at my site.

Comment by Gaman
2006-06-02 13:05:58

LcF: You are correct, as we know, asking people to click Google’s referal buttons and use language such as “Click here,” “Visit these links to support our site,” or other similar language is against the TOS.

However, keep in mind that we are allowed to endorse or recommend the products as long as we do not encourage clicks on or draw unnatural attention to the referral buttons. The current state of the script will most likely draw unnatural attention. Perhaps some changes to the script to avoid this will do the trick.

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