You’ve probably brought something from Amazon at least once before. After all, it is one of the biggest retailers in the world.
What attracts to so many shoppers is the fact that you can get virtually anything from Amazon today. And which makes it a prime target for affiliate marketers too.
Instead of dealing with monotony and stupor of the rat race to earn a few bucks, you can make money anytime, from anywhere – even while you sleep.
A lot of people make money with Amazon affiliate sites. But every story has a path, and many of you might don’t know before we dive into actual affiliate marketing on Amazon. Let’s introduce you to the basics of Amazon Affiliate Program for those just beginning their journey.
What Is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a tactic to drive sales and generates significant online revenue. In simple words, it is a process of earning money (commission) by promoting other company’s products. After reading, you must be thinking that it is so simple. Well, yes. It is easy if you follow the right steps and know the right places to look. But, it becomes challenging when you are working blindly without any specific plan.
Now, the question is how to translate this idea to Amazon. So what is affiliate marketing on Amazon?
Affiliate Marketing On Amazon
Amazon is a mega brand that has popularity all over the world. But did you know it holds 30 per cent of the e-commerce market in India and has become the most-visited shopping site in the country?
Amazon affiliate program (Amazon associates) allows bloggers, website owners, YouTubers, to earn money from Amazon by recommending the product on your sites by creating links. When customers click the links and purchase products, earn referral fees.
More than 350 million products are listed on Amazon. Imagine the choices affiliates working with Amazon have. You can select any product that matches the needs and interests of your audience.
Benefits of Amazon Affiliate Marketing
1) Well Reputed And Trusted Brand – Making money online needs other people to trust you with Amazon, you can beat it easily.
2) Unlimited Product Choices – No matter what topic you are in and what products you want to sell, you will find them on Amazon.
You have unlimited products, features, build quality, pricing, shipping time, and other aspects. There are various categories, like home & furniture, luggage, electronics, etc. that you can browse on Amazon to find products.
3) Free To Join – The Amazon associates program is free, so even if you don’t plan on using it extensively, it never hurts to sign up and have it in your back pocket.
4) Expand The Revenue – Through the affiliate programs, one can easily expand the revenue since Amazon has a set of rules to get benefitted. Beyond the products you advertise, you can also get profit from other products. In other terms, if people follow your links and buy anything more than you referred to, you will get a commission for that as well.
Amazon’s cookie can remember your customer for 24 hours, that means if the person leaves and returns to Amazon within that time your commission is secured if they buy something.
5) Safe & Reliable – Amazon is safe and reliable for both the affiliates and the buyers. When you as a buyer shop with Amazon, they assure 100% privacy and keep all your information safe. Also, as an affiliate, you should rest assured your earnings are safe there.
6) 90-Day Cookies – If customers choose a product to buy and add it to their cart, you will have 90 days to get the commission. When they complete the purchase, you’ll get your share.
7) Holiday Season Advantage – Ecommerce sales are strongest mostly during the retail holidays like Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals. Both Google searches for products and sales are substantially up during this time.
8) Leverage the Amazon Sales Potential – The Amazon site is optimized to give customers the best online purchasing experience possible. Moreover, it offers features like ‘One-Click Buy’ that makes it easy for customers to checkout. Association with Amazon means you can take the benefit of their upsells and related products.
Some Downsides Of Amazon Affiliate Marketing
1) The 24-hour Cookie – Its universal cookie is valid for 24 hours from the time the customer first clicks the link. Twenty four hours is less time than some other companies that pay you for 30 – 90 days after the first click.
2) Low Commission Rate In Some Categories – 2% to 10% payout of products is low compared to other affiliate programs. So it is hard to make money unless you are pumping out a huge sales volume.
3) Long Payment Schedule – Sometimes, payment takes a long to arrive in the account.
4) Payment Thresholds – If your account maintains the minimum threshold balance, then you get monthly payments. You won’t receive the payment unless you provide the complete tax information.
How Does Amazon's Affiliate Program Work?
Affiliates are paid if redirected users buy a product from amazon. When an affiliate signs up, Amazon provides a unique tracking ID. So when a customer sends to Amazon via a link on the affiliate’s website, they get a percentage of the sale of whatever they buy over the next 24 hours.
Affiliates commission for each sale depends on the product and the category. Check the table below to see what Amazon’s fixed affiliate program fee rate is for various product categories.
Amazon Affiliate commission rates in 2020:
|Product Category||Fixed Advertising Rates|
|Apparel & Accessories | Luggage & Bags | Watches | Shoes||9%|
|Toys & Baby Products | Home | Kitchen Appliances | Kitchen & Housewares||9%|
|Sports, Fitness & Outdoors | DIY & Tools||9%|
|Books | Grocery & Gourmet | Pantry | Office & Stationery||8%|
|Health, Beauty & Personal care | Personal Care Appliances||8%|
|Jewellery (Excluding silver & Gold coins) | Car, Motorbike, Industrial & Scientific Products | Musical Instruments||8%|
|Large Appliances | Movies | Music | Software | Video Games||5%|
|Televisions | Computers |Consumer Electronics & Accessories (excl. Data Storage Devices) | Mobile Accessories||4%|
|Mobile Phones* | Bicycles & Heavy Gym Equipment | Tyres & Rims||2.5%|
|Data Storage Devices||2%|
|Gold & Silver Coins||0.2%|
|All Other Categories (Furniture| Kindle devices & E-books| Fire TV stick & other Amazon devices | Others)||10%|
It is the percentage of visitors to your blog or who buy a product via your affiliate link out of the total number of visitors. For instance, if during the month of December, your website receives 5,000 visitors and 10 of those made a purchase after clicking on your link, that would be a conversion rate of 0.2%.
You can also earn more revenue from products that you don’t advertise. Suppose if you run a beauty blog that features affiliate links to luxury beauty items, you may get 10% of the purchase of a high-end moisturiser, plus you may get 5% more if the customer also purchases some grocery items.
However, to earn fees from Amazon purchases, a visitor must place an order within 24 hours of arriving at Amazon.in from the link.
Amazon Bounty Events
In addition to earning promoting fees by products, you can earn fixed fees from your advertising. These premiums are not geared toward products but are paid for promotions of Amazon services.
They give a fixed advertising fee once a referral sent from your website signs up for a subscription to an Amazon service. The fee you earn is known as a bounty. It is just as easy as promoting products. Integrate an Associate link or banner into your website.
Amazon has a lot of their own programs and products like:
- Amazon prime
- Amazon audible
- Amazon gifts
- Amazon Business
- Amazon Music
There are various methods to make money from Amazon affiliates that we will explore ahead.
For now, let’s get started with the most important part.
Rules And Requirements
Amazon has some guidelines for associates to follow, so it is good to understand those before starting further. The majority of rules are for ethical promotion as well as preventing associates from gaming the system.
Here are some of the rules and requirements the main ones to consider:
- The associate must disclose that they may be eligible to earn money from their recommendations on their site or in communication.
- The associate must not make false or deceptive claims in their advertisements.
- Avoid referring to prices because prices frequently change.
- Don’t use Amazon affiliate links in offline promotions, email, or eBooks.
- Don’t use link shorteners on affiliate links.
- The associate will not artificially generate clicks or impressions on their Site or create Sessions on an Amazon Site.
- Don’t copy the user’s reviews. You can re-write them but avoid plagiarism.
- Amazon inhibits paid search such as creating Google Ads and insert your link.
- Avoid using these practices – Iframe, Auto-tag, automatic cookie installs. Because not only your account will be banned, or you may end up in court.
- The content on your site should be meaningful – no copied content, especially from Amazon.
- At least one sale in 180 days; otherwise, your account will be closed.
- The account will be banned if Amazon believes that you are violating their trademark rights.
- You can only mention the product price when you put a disclaimer under the price when it was last updated.
- You can only use buy buttons provided by Amazon.
- You must identify yourself as an affiliate with the provided text on your site. For example: “[name] participates in the Amazon Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.in.”
How To Sign Up For The Amazon Associate Program: Step-by-step Guide
To become an Amazon associate, you must have an active site, blog, YouTube channel, or app. It is also helpful if you have pre-populated that site with content, so it looks active and authentic to both Amazon and users.
Remember, you must be able to describe your website’s purpose as part of the application process. Therefore you have a firm idea of why you are creating your site, the audience you’ll target, and how you’ll bring in traffic.
To begin the signup process, you need to have an Amazon account first.
After creating Amazon account, add personal information.
Once you register an account, with all relevant details, you need to list the platforms (website, app, social media) you’d use to market Amazon products. It gives you the option to enter up to 50 mobile app URLs and websites combined.
In this section, first, select a store ID, and provide information about your sites or apps and what category of products you intend to advertise, as shown below.
You can also choose the category from a drop-down menu such as apparel, books, gaming, or movies that describe your websites or mobile apps.
In the next step, you have to describe how you drive traffic to your websites and how you will generate income from apps and websites. Also, how will you build links and how many total unique visitors you get monthly.
After completing this section, your account will be set up and unique Associate ID will generate.
In this step, you have to select how you want to be paid. There are some options available for you to choose from :
- Direct deposit (it isn’t available for international associates)
- Check ($15 processing fee is given up for international associates)
- Amazon Gift cards
Once you are done with registration, you will have access to the affiliate’s platform.
As an affiliate, you can advertise any product present in the category and earn a commission. The Amazon associates program is 100% free to join. This program is available for all Amazon’s marketplaces – for India (amazon.in), US (amazon.com), Canada (amazon.ca), UK (amazon.co.uk), and so on. The commission you earn is anywhere between 1 to 10%.
How To Create An Amazon Affiliate Link?
After creating an associate account, you will be directed to your personal your associate dashboard where you can view a variety of analytics, including monthly summary, earning overview, total clicks, and associate links. You can make links in 2 ways – Product Link Tool or using SiteStripe.
Affiliate Links with SiteStripe
This tool allows you to directly create a link from the site stripe bar that shows up on the product page when signed into Amazon’s affiliate panel. It is the simplest way to generate links.
This Sitestripe bar at the top allows you to create various types of links. You can get a plain-text link, text + image, or an image with an embedded link. Also, you can create a native ad, as shown above.
After selecting the type of affiliate link, the ad code will appear in the box under it. You will simply need to copy the HTML code and paste it on your app or website.
- Text Links
You can use it to create an automatically tagged link for a text link on any page. Click on the ‘Text’ icon for the automatic integration of a Tracking ID into the link. It acts as your store ID.
If you have multiple tracking IDs, select using a drop-down menu. It also provides the option of using a text link overview to determine whether you want to use a short link or complete link.
- Image Link
This option enables you to create an image link from the page by clicking on ‘Image’ and select the right size. It automatically integrates the last Tracking ID, or you can choose another ID from the drop-down menu.
- Text + Image Links
You can create code for the link box with an image, product name, and current price with this option. This link will also have an Amazon logo and a ‘Buy’ button.
Share Amazon Affiliate Links On Social Media
You can either post directly or make it impressive with a text message from your end. The social sharing options are available for Twitter and Facebook.
Affiliate Links With Amazon's Product Link Tool
Using this tool is a simple way to create an affiliate link. You can access it by clicking on “Product Linking” at the top of the Amazon Associates and choose “Product Links.”
Clicking on product links will take you to the other page name as “Search For Any Product.” Here you can search for a specific product, brand, or model. For example, if you are building an affiliate link for a Laptop review or search more specifically for the exact product, you are reviewing like “Dell G3 3500 Gaming Laptop”.
Once you have entered your query, the search results will be shown, and you can choose the product you had like to create a link for.
To get this link, click on the “Get Link” next to the product you had like to advertise.
A box will pop up with a link so that you can copy the code for your site. You can customize its look – whether, in your ad, you want image and text or just text or image only. Moreover, you can customise the look of the advertisement.
For example, Changing the title or price colour to match the branding of your website.
Highlight and copy the HTML below, then paste it into the code for your site.
Use Generated Links On Your Site According To Amazon's standards
Remember that Amazon’s guidelines inhibit using the link in offline promotions, email, PDFs or eBooks or PDFs. The better way to attract your audience is quality content and share relevant links on your website or YouTube Channel.
Your Amazon affiliate account will be approved for 180 days. Throughout that time, you must make at least one sale, or the account will be closed. So, it is important to have a strategy for your Amazon affiliate efforts. However, you can reapply for the program after altering certain adjustments to your site.
The amount you get paid relies on the category of product commission rate and quantity of products your visitors’ purchase. Earned profits are paid approx 60 days following the end of each calendar month.
There are various payment modes like direct deposit, Amazon Gift Cards, or check. The selection of payment method plays a role in how often you will receive payment as Amazon has specified a minimum payment amount for each type.
Payment Minimum Chart
Let’s take a look at India – How Amazon Pays?
Amazon doesn’t process the fees until the amount is at least INR 1,000. And the payments via check aren’t made until the payable amount is least INR 2,500.
The denominations vary, but the method is the same for all. You can select the payment mode you prefer, which can affect how fast or slow you receive your payments.
Electing bank transfer can help the money get credited in your account faster while opting checks will be a time investing.
- Direct Deposit
If you select the direct deposit payment method, you will need to give Amazon your banking information, including bank name, account number, and other identifying information. Amazon holds the payment until you earn the minimum payment of $10.
For check payment, you need to provide a mailing address to Amazon. They will hold your payment until it reaches the minimum amount of $100 + $15 check processing fee.
- Amazon Gift Card
For this method, Amazon sends gift cards in the amount you have earned to your account’s email address. The payment will hold until you reach the payment minimum of $10.
For example, you run an electronics blog.
First, you write the post about the Top 10 best laptops and link to Amazon products in your post. The blog post gets 6000 visits per month, and out 25% going to Amazon by clicking on your links. This leaves you with 1500 Amazon visitors.
Out of these 1500 visitors, 3% end up making a purchase on Amazon with an average order value of $78. The 3% comes out to 45 purchases at $78 each for a sales total of $3,510.
In the electronics category, Amazon gives a 4% commission rate. So you earn $140.4.It truly is a number game.
To get a good profit, you need to have a rank for keywords and substantial traffic that pay well and a high average order value.
How Amazon Pays Its International Affiliates
International citizens (non-US affiliates) with an offshore bank account weren’t eligible to receive bank transfers. They can receive payments only via checks and gift cards. However, checks for abroad banks takes much processing time to dispense the cash.
Now, associates from specific countries like Italy, UK, France, and Spain can directly receive payments in their accounts. This reduces the need to wait for delivery and clearance of checks.
Strategies To Maximise Profits: Amazon Affiliate Program In India
Affiliate Marketing is a numbers game. You need a good amount of traffic and a large following to convert enough visitors into buyers. Make your website more profitable Amazon affiliate site using these tips:
Choose your niche wisely
Selecting a niche is one of the important factors that will decide how successful you are. The way to set up a successful niche site is to determine which part of the eCommerce marketplace you will target.
The task becomes easier for you if you already run a blog or website. If your site is already up, then you can skip this step. However, if you are starting a site or new to blogging, it is challenging to select.
Finding a low competition niche can be difficult, but a good idea to search for a niche that you have an avid interest in or knowledge. For example, if you are interested in gaming, you may want to review gaming consoles, or you’re into skincare, you may want to start a beauty blog.
Writing review focused content is the best way to make a profitable affiliate site. However, it can be challenging to upkeep if you are writing about electronic products when you have no interest in it. It will be hard for you to compile content if you don’t understand the audience’s intent or market.
But having an interest in the topic alone isn’t sufficient to make your website competitive. Before picking a niche, do keyword research to determine which keyword you can easily rank for and how competitive are various niches.
- Write Product Reviews – (Original Content)
The online reviews have the power to influence the decision of a buyer. Reviewing products is a great way to boost sales and earn a commission in return. Also, writing a single product review of Amazon products is a popular option. There are many other ways to create a review oriented content that can be engaging.
Furthermore, writing roundups of similar products can be a great option. You can write a review of Top 10 Best products or create a roundup of 10 product reviews and make the top 3 picks. For example, in the screenshot, the ten best products are reviewed and mentioned the top 3 picks that performed the best.
It is vital to post regularly to keep your website up to date and to create unique content.
- Create a Product Comparison Table
Products comparison table can put you out into the limelight – it is important, especially when you are writing a review of multiple products. The comparison table makes it easy to compare the different features of all the products in your article.
Here is an example of a product comparison table:
- Optimize For Specific Products
Most traffic to affiliate websites comes from product-related searches or specific product review searches. Therefore use long-tail terms and exact keyword in your URL.
For instance, you are writing a review of an appliance, including the brand name and model number in the title and URL, if possible, such as ” Brother DCP-T 310 Inktank Refill System Printer”.
- Improve Website Layout
It is so hard to keep the reader engaged for more than a few seconds. Thus, the visual appeal of your website becomes important, as well.
- Use A Link Localizer
A link localizer allows you to redirect visitors from specific countries to a particular site. If a US-based visitor visits your website and clicks on Amazon affiliate link, it will direct the user to amazon.com. And if you don’t use it for your affiliate links, you won’t get paid a commission for the foreign traffic you drive to Amazon.
Mistakes That Can Get Your Amazon Affiliate Account Banned
As mentioned above, Amazon is a stickler for rules. If you violate any clause of the agreement between Amazon and participants, they may ban you from participation in the program or can lead to severe consequences.
Things To Avoid:
- Strict Email Marketing Rules
Associate Participant is prohibited from taking part in specific email marketing campaigns to promote Amazon products. In simple terms, Amazon doesn’t allow to send traffic directly via email. You can’t directly link Amazon pages in your campaigns. But you can use mail marketing to redirect users to your own websites that contain the associate links.
- No Link Shortening
As per the agreement, the participant can’t use link shorteners in their affiliate website or blog. This is a safety measure against miscreants who use the Amazon brand name for their own benefit and end up compromising its customer goodwill.
You can’t use your own affiliate link.
How simple – using your link to buy products from Amazon, and earning a commission on the side? Well, it isn’t allowed to use your own affiliate link to purchase products.
- Don’t Use Amazon Reviews.
You cannot directly copy or use third party user reviews on your website or blog. You can take an idea and overview from those reviews, and then compile a review yourself.
- One Account Per Participant
Under the agreement, it is mentioned that associates don’t create more than on account. Although approved for some exceptional cases, for specialised business, you need prior permission from Amazon.
- Avoid Using Amazon Prices Or Ratings
You can’t display price or mention user ratings available on the Amazon website. They allow you to create product comparison charts and highlighting different features.
- No Rebates
Associates cannot provide product discounts or rebates on their websites or blogs. Only Amazon handles all the terms and conditions of the trade from their website.
Any offers of rebates from your associate’s side will get them banned.
- Cannot Link From Sexually Aggressive/Violent Sites
Amazon states that clearly, you can’t add affiliate links to blogs or sites that contain aggressive, violent or sexually explicit content.
Other Methods To Do Affiliate Marketing On Amazon
Drop Shipping or Retail Arbitrage
You can sell products from other stores on Amazon at higher prices to earn a profit. Suppose you go to AliExpress to find a product on discount or sold at a lower price than Amazon. You can dropship that product and sell it on Amazon at the Amazon rate. There are various tools and processes involved in this method that will discuss with you in another article.
Fulfilment By Amazon (FBA)
It is a service provided by Amazon, which gives storage, packaging and shipping assistance to sellers. It takes the burden off of sellers and grants more flexibility in their selling practices. Let’s say, for example, Yoga Mats. First, you have to find a manufacturer that is already making yoga mats to create yours and brand it with your name or logo. After that, you can ship it to Amazon’s fulfilment centres that handle all the shipping and logistics whenever your product is brought.
Publish An Ebook
Publishing a book is a great way to make money. You can earn 60 to 65% royalty on your books, quote your price and exclusive publishing rights. There are three different ways you can do this:
- You can publish hard copy books
- Publish Audiobooks
- Kindle Publishing
It offers you a way to get gifts in exchange for unbiased reviews Amazon Products. Amazon invites customers to become Vine Voices on the basis of reviewer rank. The rank reflects the quality of the reviews and helpful for Amazon customers.
There is a lot to consider before signing up. If you’re a blogger, YouTuber or have a website with suitable content with a large audience, it can be a simple way to start earning additional income in the long term.
However, if you are a newbie, you can start affiliate marketing with a few simple steps. Create a website to make it profitable with associate links. Or you can develop a niche site and optimized with links to make a profit in the short term. Moreover, it is a good avenue if you want to work online and make a side income while working full time.
Amazon Associate is open for all including international citizens, making it a global platform. However, it has some flaws like short cookie windows and low payout rates.
The advantage is that it ensures reliable and timely payments. You can also choose an endless amount of products to promote as it has a wide array of products. Hope so you get enough information and motivation to become a successful affiliate on Amazon.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How Long Does It Take To Get Approved For Amazon Associate Program?
After you sign up, Amazon’s Associate’s team will check your application once you have driven qualified sales.
2. Do Amazon Affiliate Links Expire?
When an associate link is clicked, it starts a timer known as “cookie window”. The cookie window is the time period over which affiliates can earn a commission on items added to cart. There is a 24-hour window after a click where you can get credit for items added to a shopping cart.
3. What Can Make Cookie Window Shorter?
Cookies can be overwritten after a click on another associate link. If a shopper clicks another link (assuming it is not your affiliate link), the last click wins, if it was your click then the timer restarts.
4. Am I allowed To Use The Amazon Affiliate Links On Social Networks?
Amazon allows the usage of links on social networks per the Operating Agreement. The Stripe feature has made it easy to directly share and publish links to the Amazon Shop on Facebook and Twitter.
5. Can I Change The Profile Information That I Registered With?
Yes, you can edit your profile information. The Operating Agreement requires Associates to keep their account info up to date. To do this, go to account settings.
Here you can update your site profile, modify payment settings, add users and more. Only a primary account user can change payment settings and add a new user to the account.