Earn money with Amazon Affiliate Program (Amazon Associates Program)
Earning revenue with Amazon’s affiliate program is no longer a topic that only concerns niche blogs. The huge product selection on Amazon makes affiliate marketing an interesting financial option for numerous content creators and corporate blogs. By integrating product links into website content, five-figure sums can be earned.
How does it work?
If a user visits your blog and arrives at the Amazon page via your affiliate link, you earn from each subsequent purchase. Amazon differentiates between direct and indirect sales. If the user buys products from the same product category of the product linked by you via your link, it is a direct qualified purchase. Sales from other product categories, on the other hand, are considered indirect qualified purchases and carry a much lower commission.
In any case, you should always link directly to a product page. Only in this way do the triggered sales count as direct purchases by the user. On the other hand, if you link to category pages, all the executed purchases will count as indirect sales that will earn you only a small advertising fee.
Nevertheless, with Amazon affiliate marketing, you will receive your commission not only for the products you link to. Every product added to the cart and purchased by the user will be rewarded with a credit in the PartnerNet account.
THE ADVANTAGES OF AMAZON AFFILIATE BUSINESS
- large variety of products
- high customer loyalty through good customer service
- integration of links possible without technical know-how
- due to good WordPress compatibility, descriptive preview boxes can be placed
- no effort at all
- reliable payment of commission
THE DISADVANTAGES OF AMAZON AFFILIATE BUSINESS
- not every product can be used successfully for the affiliate product
- depending on the product category the commissions can be very low
- the cookies of the links are limited to 24 hours
- without reach high income is not possible
- AdBlockers often prevent sales
How much commission can I earn?
You can earn up to 12.00% commission with the Amazon affiliate program.
This varies depending on the category. In the area of televisions, smartphones and tablets, for example, it is 1.00% high. In the fashion category you can earn up to 12.00%.
How do I sign up for the Amazon affiliate program?
The registration for the affiliate program is, as with most programs, not complicated. Important: The Amazon affiliate program has particularly strict guidelines. Anyone who does not adhere to these can be quickly removed from the affiliate program. The requirements for participation in the Amazon EU affiliate program should therefore be read carefully by each affiliate in advance. For example, self-sales are prohibited. Also, the insertion of affiliate links, widgets or banners in pop-ups is not allowed.
Tips for more success with Amazon PartnerNet
You can generate considerable income with the help of the Amazon affiliate marketing program. However, to do so, you should consider the following tips:
1. what product category do you serve?
Ask yourself this question before you join the affiliate program. You should only feature and review products that do not question the authenticity of your brand, but fit your topic area.
2. put the customer benefit in the foreground
Instead of touting the product, focus on the benefit to the customer. Consider upfront what benefit the customer will get from the product and what problem it will solve for them. This should be the focus of your presentation.
3. rely on trustworthy product reviews
Every product has its downsides. Don’t just tell your readers what they want to hear, but instead present them with a balanced product review with pros and cons. Because at the latest, when readers look at the Amazon reviews themselves, they will also come across one or two flaws. If, on the other hand, you are honest, you offer your readers real added value.
4. achieve higher sales through SEO
When users find out about a product on your website, they usually already do so with a specific purchase intention. Take advantage of this knowledge: By using long-tail and generic keywords, you’ll catch the user in their search and eventually lead them to the Amazon product page through your content. Last but not least, traffic is one of the most important factors for earning good money. Therefore, always be concerned about a good ranking in the search results.
5. use the report on the advertising costs for the optimization
Amazon provides you with a comprehensive overview of all sales and generated ad spend refunds on PartnerNet. You can use this analysis to understand which products are working and which integration is the most appropriate. Through constant optimization, you will be able to improve your income through affiliate marketing with Amazon in the long run.
Why SEO is the secret to a successful Amazon affiliate website.
To make money with an Amazon affiliate website, traffic (visitors) is required.
Without traffic, no one will click on your affiliate links, which means you won’t earn any commission.
Now there are many ways to get traffic. But most who succeed with Amazon affiliate marketing get most of their traffic through SEO.
Here’s why: When you promote your blog on social media or in a newsletter, you get a spike in traffic. But once your audience has seen your post, the traffic drops back to zero.
This is called the “spike of hope” followed by the “zero of no.”
SEO has the opposite effect. If you rank in Google with keywords that people search for month after month, your traffic will be consistent – and should improve over time.
It is possible to achieve the same effect with paid ads, but there are some problems with that:
- It costs money (and most people have more time than money).
- It’s very much all or nothing. As soon as you stop spending money, your traffic drops to zero.
- It’s hard to make a profit because the ad spend eats up your affiliate commissions.
With that in mind let’s look at how you can build an Amazon affiliate site that makes money month after month.
Choose a good niche
Have you heard of The Wirecutter? It’s owned by the New York Times and is perhaps Amazon’s most popular affiliate site. It has reviews for everything from knife sharpeners to standing desks, and gets an estimated 3.9 million monthly visits via Google alone. The Wirecutter has now been redirected to nytimes.com/wirecutter/.
Many who are new to Amazon affiliate marketing see sites like this and try to replicate their success.
Don’t make that mistake too.
Great websites like The Wirecutter have deep pockets and talented SEO teams. Trying to compete will be an uphill battle. Instead, you need to pick a niche that you can then dominate.
- Find something you’re interested in
- Loss of motivation is probably the most common reason people fail at affiliate marketing, so it’s important to choose a niche that you find at least somewhat interesting.
- So take a pen and paper and jot down some ideas.
- If you’re having trouble, this huge list of affiliate marketing niches might help.
- Alternatively, you can get inspiration from The Wirecutter’s categories.
Advantages of being an Amazon affiliate
Here are the TOP 5 benefits that come your way as an Amazon affiliate:
1. trusted brand.
Customers trust Amazon. It is not for nothing that the website is one of the most popular online stores among Germans. Many Internet users now prefer to buy there than anywhere else.
2. participation in the entire shopping cart
Many customers often buy more than one product from Amazon. The great thing about this is that as an affiliate, you get a share of the entire shopping cart. So no matter how many products the customer buys, you participate in the entire turnover.
3. extremely wide product range
Amazon’s product range is extremely broad and deep. Whatever niche your blog is in, the Amazon store gives you the opportunity to monetize almost any niche.
Amazon allows its partners to use social media. There is great potential on social media! It is not only a good source to generate website visitors, but also to place your affiliate link.
5. punctual payment
Amazon pays out commissions to its affiliates on time. This is a huge plus, because you never have to wait for your money and you can be sure that it will be paid reliably.
Why niche sites are promising for affiliates
Product comparison sites, for example on household goods, can offer real added value for the Internet world by providing tangible tips and solutions. The pleasant side effect: You hardly have to strain your own wallet for advertising costs – on the one hand, thanks to the commissions you receive for the work, and on the other hand, because you can achieve a lot with little – in other words: With the right SEO strategy, you will soon climb to good positions. If your offer is also a niche, you have one more reason to be happy: Optimization measures are relatively easy, since the competition is accordingly scarce. And your start-up costs are very low anyway, considering hosting expenses and low-cost or even free optimization and analysis tools.
Your role as a long-tail publisher
The long-tail theory focuses on niche products, whereas top publishers – influential portals such as major newspapers – stand for top visitor numbers. This is because they can score with a high reach and they are characterized by a good negotiating position and a lot of room to maneuver vis-à-vis the merchants. Long-tail publishers, on the other hand, are more specialized, often more credible at the same time, and can place products more effectively. This could be your advantage over the broad-based top publishers. But keep in mind that as a long-tail publisher you always have to stay competitive. And of course you should only work with those merchants whose portfolios perfectly match your topic and your communication – not only to be able to count on higher sales. Because you can also assume that the ad will be perceived as less annoying by your readers.
Direct vs. indirect sales
Amazon differentiates between direct and indirect sales from affiliate websites.
If a user buys something from the same product category as the linked product through the link on your website on Amazon, it is a direct qualified sale.
If products from a different category are purchased on Amazon by a user through the link, this is an indirect qualified sale.
Generally, purchased products from the same category, i.e. direct sales, bring in a higher commission.
If you now have the clever thought of simply linking a product category from Amazon, be forewarned. Amazon makes all sales from linking category pages count as indirect sales, which means you will earn a lower commission.
Our tip: Always link to a product detail page, because that’s the only way sales will count as direct sales.
Why should you search for lucrative Amazon products?
As an Amazon affiliate, you naturally want to refer as many buyers as possible to Amazon in order to have good revenue. But the interest and conversion rate varies greatly from product to product. Even in the same niche, there are big differences.
To avoid investing time and effort in introducing products that are hardly bought, it is worth looking for the really lucrative products.
These not only sell more often, but also bring more revenue to the bottom line.
What makes a lucrative product?
Before I get to my tips on how to find lucrative products, let me first define what I mean by lucrative products.
Of course, you won’t find a label of “lucrative” anywhere, but this assessment is made up of various factors.
In the past, the ideal price range for an Amazon product was 100 to 200 euros. The lower limit still applies in many cases today, because the commission on 10 euro products is simply too low and you would have to sell a lot of them.
Upwards, the limit is no longer so clear. In former times commissions were given maximally up to 200 euro commodity value. This limit no longer exists today. Who manages to mediate expensive products, which gets also very high commissions. Nevertheless, it should be remembered that the more expensive the product, the less willing users are to buy it online.
The amount of commission depends on the product category on Amazon.
For example, on products from the category “Garden” there is 7% commission, while for televisions it is only 1%. This already makes a big difference for the affiliate and his earnings.
Many interested parties/buyers
Of course, it only brings you something if you can refer a relatively large number of products. So there should be quite a lot of interest in the product.
You can find this out by looking at the Amazon sales rank. The higher it is in the category, the better.
In addition, you should look at kwfinder.com to see how often the specific product name or its general product/brand name is searched for. There are products that are searched for specifically and this is of course very interesting for an affiliate website.
But at least the general product/brand name should be searched for frequently, so that you get traffic from Google to your own website.
Not in need of explanation
There are products that are complicated and may even require complex installation. Such products are not so readily bought online and are therefore not good for an affiliate.
Instead, products that require little or no explanation are much better. These are very often ordered online and the users have a much lower purchase threshold.
I have had bad experiences with products that are very popular right now. For products that countless affiliates promote, you often have a very hard time ranking in Google.
And if you don’t get visitors to your own website, you won’t refer any products.
A good rating on Amazon is also important, because such products are usually returned much less often.
It should be at least 4 stars, otherwise users tend to refrain from buying the product. Good reviews increase the conversion rate, as no doubts arise and the herd instinct confirms users that they are making the right purchase decision.
Unfortunately, there are very popular products that are currently unavailable. I have this problem e.g. right now with one or the other board game on my board game blog.
Promoting products that are not available does not bring in revenue.
Last but not least, it’s always a plus if the product is in the Prime program. This way Prime customers get the product shipped for free and overnight.
Some interesting Amazon facts
- Amazon was founded in 1994 by Jeff Bezos and started as a small online bookseller. Today, the company is not only the largest and most successful e-commerce provider, but also one of the most valuable brands in the world.
- The yellow arrow in the Amazon logo pointing from “A” to “Z” symbolizes that customers can find practically anything at Amazon. At the same time, the curved arrow can also be interpreted as a smile.
- Amazon has various subsidiaries. These include, for example, the cloud service AWS (Amazon Web Services) and the Internet service Alexa. Beyond that, however, there are several other companies.
- The Internet giant is a retailer and marketplace operator at the same time. This means that not only its own products are sold in its own name. Part of the product range is offered by external online retailers via the integrated sales platform Amazon Marketplace.
Why you should use other affiliate programs than Amazon already today
“Dont Put all Your Eggs in One Basket” – The world’s best investor Warren Buffet already said that.
As entrepreneurs, we look at SEO projects like assets. Again, diversification is important if you want to make money in the long run.
And for the following reasons:
Reason number 1: Commissions are continuously decreasing.
As touched on above, Amazon is increasingly dismantling its affiliate program. The cut in revenue share has hit US affiliates hard, even costing companies their livelihood.
Amazon is simply not a good partner, but acts arbitrarily. The affiliate industry assumes that.
- commission cuts could soon follow in Europe as well!
- even worse, Amazon might at some point think that its brand is strong enough to do without an affiliate program completely.
Don’t be the last to leave the sinking ship, do it as soon as possible!
Reason number 2: The returns have always been bad
For many product categories, Amazon has never been the first choice.
The one, big advantage with Amazon is that the brand “Amazon” evokes so much trust with users that they are happy to buy. They assume that their product will arrive quickly and reliably.
As digital natives, we of course know that there are many good e-commerce stores. But other people just feel more comfortable with Amazon. That’s why Amazon doesn’t care so much about its affiliates and affiliate program. Amazon rather thinks that you benefit from the strong brand and not the other way around.
In which niches should you rather use other programs?
Especially in the niches where Amazon does not necessarily dominate the market.
Believe it or not:
There are many topics where Amazon does particularly well. Either because the offer is suboptimal or there are simply other strong brands that are more in line with the target group, for example:
- Medicine and health: Whether nutritional supplements, medications or potency pills – Amazon is not the market leader in the area of health, fitness and medicine. Many larger brands sell on their own online stores or use other e-commerce channels.
- Specific sports, such as martial arts, motor sports or water sports: Amazon tends to play second fiddle for specific sports, especially if they are somewhat more expensive. In surfing, for example, larger brands, such as Billabong, dominate, and their offerings are not always found on Amazon.
- Digital products: Software, online courses or games are sold well on Amazon, but not exclusively. In this area, many customers buy directly from the manufacturer or provider. These in turn reward you as an affiliate with much more lucrative payment models.
- You can simply earn much more money with other programs
- Affiliate marketing has been around longer than Amazon.
The following payment models are attractive. But you won’t find them on Amazon:
- Life Time Rev Share: Here, you don’t just get a one-time share of the revenue from a sale. Instead, the affiliate program considers you as an affiliate who has recruited a customer. You will therefore share in all sales that the customer brings to the company.
- Compensation per click: You will be rewarded for each affiliate click. A sale is not necessary for you to earn.
- Compensation per action: If one of your visitors signs up for the newsletter or opens a customer account, you will already be compensated.
- Commission up to 40%: Instead of 5% as with Amazon, some affiliate programs compensate you with up to 40%. Partly for the same or similar products.
Reason number 3: If your partnership with Amazon ends, your project ends.
If your project is based exclusively on affiliate marketing via Amazon, you risk a lot.
Again and again it happens that Amazon arbitrarily kicks people out of the affiliate program. Sometimes with drastic consequences: Namely a LifeTime Ban.
If your project is your main occupation or you firmly count on the income, an exclusion from the partner program can have serious consequences for you.
So don’t take a chance and look for alternatives even now.
To monetize their Tiktok reach, influencers also promote junk products on Amazon
By now, it should be clear that monstrous reach is up for grabs on Tiktok. Even with just a few followers, posts can achieve millions of views and likes. Time and again, products like a cranberry juice go viral. We show how resourceful creators use this viral potential of the platform to earn good money with Amazon affiliate links and how special accounts are created that revolve solely around product recommendations with affiliated affiliate business.
Ryan Mulvany always gets everything out of his 15 to 60 seconds on Tiktok. He touts a plastic mixer that can squirt pancake batter right into the pan. He shows off a dumbbell whose weight he can adjust with a twist of the handle. In another video, his followers get to see a diamond cleaner. With his Amazon product recommendations, Mulvany has made it to over 323,000 followers on Tiktok. Most of the time, he reaches 10,000 to 100,000 views with his videos. Individual clips, such as two in which he tries out face masks sold on Amazon, have reached 1.6 and two million views. In each of his videos, he encourages people to click on the “link in his bio” – this is where his business model lies.
Opportunity for retailers and brands
Apparently, however, it’s not just slightly junk niche products that sell through Tiktok recommendations. Beauty tips also seem to go down well with the young and largely female target group. Because not only Creator often show cosmetic products that are available for purchase on Amazon. “For us, Tiktok is the biggest traffic driver,” Dino Ha, founder and CEO of U.S. DTC company Memebox, told Glossy. (Explaining the company’s “multi-brand strategy” here). Because Tiktok’s target audience is already so familiar with Amazon, Memebox’s “I Dew Care” and “I’m Meme” brand accounts link to Amazon stores rather than its own online store. “I think we’ll leave it that way, too, because it just works,” Dino Ha said. Almost every post on the “I Dew Care” account is hashtagged “amazonfinds” – the style of product introduction is similar to Creatorn: show product, unbox, try.
How does affiliate marketing work on Pinterest?
The way affiliate marketing works on Pinterest is based on product recommendations. As a seller, you can provide the link to your followers so they can find your product more easily. This will possibly encourage them to buy it. This way, you get a commission when customers buy the product.
Think of it as a win-win situation; your followers can buy something that caught their eye thanks to you, and you get paid.
Fixing your Amazon affiliate links on Pinterest is very easy. Remember to follow their guidelines and you are ready to make money!
The main goal is to create a profile where you curate content that represents your taste, style, and business goals on relevant boards. This is explained below. Not everything in your Pinterest profile has to have an affiliate link, but users can come across them when they save your content to their boards via home feeds, category feeds, or related pins.
Where does it depend on how much you can earn?
I couldn’t find more semi-recent insights into PartnerNet earnings, but I think the examples already show very nicely that there are both very good earning Amazon affiliates, and quite low earnings.
In reality it is even more extreme than these examples suggest. As with most affiliate programs, it is also the case with Amazon that only a small fraction of the registered affiliates really earn good income. The vast majority earn little to nothing. It’s not for nothing that Amazon changed its approach to this in the spring, announcing that it would delete inactive affiliates after a while (and a warning).
However, there are a few important factors that have a big impact on whether you earn good affiliate revenue or not.
Important factors for good revenue:
- Niche: The niche is the most important factor in my experience. There are simply topics on which you can very well introduce Amazon products that are financially rewarding and that are frequently bought online. Besides such lucrative products, the search volume and competition is also important, because usually you will get most traffic from Google.
- Traffic: That’s where we come to traffic. Even though in affiliate marketing you can get good revenue with relatively few visitors, which is one reason for the popularity of niche websites, more traffic often means higher revenue. Therefore, readable content and of course good search engine optimization play an important role in increasing traffic.
- Trust: What’s the point of having massive visitors on your website, but nobody buys anything? As an Amazon affiliate, it is also important to build trust with your visitors. This can be achieved by the content of your website, but also by the way you integrate Amazon affiliate links and also the design plays a role.
In addition, there are of course other factors that have an impact on revenue. I will come to that in the course of this article series.
Many beginners have a hard time with these factors or are not even aware of their importance. Exactly that leads then to the fact that the incomes are often very low.
What always amazes me personally as an affiliate is the “fear” of affiliate links!
Where does the fear come from? Is it disinformation? Is it envy or a “non-benefit”?
What is certain is that the advertised product is not a bit more expensive just because you get to a website via an affiliate link!
On the contrary: often product manufacturers even save the advertising costs and can therefore offer the product cheaper. Because the affiliate takes the costs and efforts to promote the product. And even then, the product manufacturer only has to pay out commission if the referral was actually successful.