What if I told you there is a way to make lots of money online? Sounds too good to be true? Well, there is a way to make money online. All you need to do is work with the largest e-commerce company in the world! With Amazon’s affiliate program, also known as Amazon Associates Program, you can monetize your online presence and earn a regular income.
It’s not as easy as it sounds though. There’s plenty you’ll have to do in order to be a successful Amazon affiliate. Let’s have a closer look at the details to understand the program and learn how you can become an Amazon associate.
Like any other affiliate program, the idea behind the program is simple. Affiliate marketing programs are arrangements where an online merchant pays an affiliate for online traffic or sales, depending on the agreement.
In the case of Amazon affiliate marketing, associates are paid when a referred user purchases a product from the e-commerce giant within 24 hours. This is a win-win situation for everyone involved. Sellers benefit from the additional sales and visibility, while affiliates get an additional income. Returns for affiliates are based on performance under the pay-per-sale model. Therefore, it is also in their best interest to optimize their website and content to drive sales. So, if you’re a seller apprehensive about affiliate marketing, you can be assured that it works!
For affiliates, this is a great way to profit from the burgeoning online retail marketplace. Amazon accounts for more than 40% of all online purchases, so the retail giant is a perfect partner. All that’s left is for you to master Amazon affiliate marketing.
How does Amazon’s affiliate program work?
Under the program, affiliates are only paid if redirected users purchase an item from Amazon. Here’s the detailed process:
Affiliate redirects the user to Amazon (usually a product page) via an affiliate link
Redirected user purchases products from Amazon within 24 hours
Affiliate is paid a percentage of each sale within the 24-hour period.
Note: Affiliates are also paid for items added to the cart within 24 hours and purchased before the cart expires.
Your commission as an affiliate for each sale will depend on the product and the category. If you want a more detailed breakdown of affiliate fees, you can refer to the associate’s webpage.
Keep in mind, you only get paid if a customer places an order within 24 hours of being redirected to Amazon through an affiliate link. Additionally, you won’t earn any commission if a customer re-enters Amazon through another affiliate link. The 24-hour purchasing period is refreshed every time the customer is redirected by your affiliate link.
Why you should become an affiliate marketer for Amazon
Everybody loves an additional income. That is a no-brainer. Amazon’s affiliate program is better than most though. Here are some reasons you should sign up to become an Amazon associate.
It’s easy to start: All you need to do is sign up. Amazon might take a while to approve your registration. However, once you’re an Amazon associate, you can jump right in and start sharing affiliate links.
Amazon is a trusted brand: Amazon is the biggest online retail platform in the world. It is a trusted and well-known brand. Your website users/visitors will know exactly what your affiliate link redirects to, and will not be hesitant to click that button. Credibility counts for a lot online!
Choices, choices, and more choices: You’ll never have to worry about what you want to advertise. There are over 120 million products being sold on Amazon, so you’ll never have trouble finding the right product to advertise on your platform. Products are not the only things you can advertise as an affiliate, so you’re spoiled for choice. We’ll look into your options as an affiliate later.
24 hours of profit: Remember when I said associates get paid for every product purchased by a consumer within 24 hours of clicking the affiliate link? Well, that is a good deal. What does this mean? If a consumer clicks your affiliate link for a moisturizer and purchases that product, you get a percentage of the sale. Great so far? It gets better. You get a cut for every other product that customer purchases within 24 hours of clicking your link. Did they buy some batteries? You get a percentage of that sale too. Maybe a toothbrush? That’s right, you’re getting paid!
Amazon affiliate marketing: Disadvantages
While partnering with Amazon has its advantages, there are a few drawbacks.
Category dependent revenue: Commission for some products and some categories can be abysmally low. If you’re running a blog talking about video games, for instance, I have some bad news. Physical copies of video games and video game console purchases from affiliate links will get you 1% of the sales. Not all products are created equal when it comes to Amazon’s affiliate program, so make sure you read the detailed breakdown of commissions before embarking on your affiliate journey.
You’ll have to wait: You can only make money as an affiliate marketer if your website has good traffic in the first place. This is not a quick way to make money. If you already have an online platform (website, mobile app, or social media handles) with high traffic, this is a great opportunity to make some extra money. If you don’t, starting one from scratch requires a lot of time, effort, and discipline.
So, given these drawbacks, who should look to become an Amazon affiliate?
Well, the answer is anyone! This is a great way to earn money if you’re willing to put in the extra effort. If you already have a website or social media channel with a great following, then the program is perfect for you. All you need to do is start adding affiliate links and endorse products that you like. Word-of-mouth marketing is incredible social proof, and you’re bound to ensure conversions if you have a trustworthy reputation.
How to become an Amazon affiliate: Step-by-step guide
We’ve spoken about the good, the bad, and the ugly when it comes to Amazon affiliate marketing. Now let’s look into how you can become an Amazon affiliate. It’s a simple process that begins by going to the Amazon associates webpage. This is the process after you hit the ‘Sign up’ button:
Enter your account information. This is straightforward and you’ll have to enter your information, including name, address, and phone number.
After you’ve submitted your account information, you will be directed to list the websites or mobile apps where you plan to advertise for Amazon. You can enter up to 50 websites and mobile app URLs in total.
Once you’ve added all your potential affiliate websites, you need to provide more information about them. You also need to create an associate store ID (usually the name of your website) and highlight what kind of products you plan to advertise or promote.
Now you need to convince Amazon that you can bring in the sales. Describe how you drive traffic to your websites, how you use your online assets to generate income, and how you usually build links. You also need to tell Amazon your monthly traffic.
Once you’ve entered all the necessary details, wait for an automated call from Amazon. You’ll receive a 4-digit PIN that you need to enter to verify the information you’ve provided so far. All that’s left after this is to read the ‘Terms and Conditions’ and click on ‘Finish’.
Once you’ve submitted the application, you will receive a unique Associates ID. Make a note of the number, because you will need to use it later to verify your account. It’ll usually take 1 to 3 days to get news from Amazon on whether you’ve been approved to become an associate.
Once you become an Amazon associate, you have 180 days to make a sale. If no one purchases a product from your affiliate link for 180 days, your account will be closed. This is why you need to have a plan when applying to become an Amazon associate. Don’t worry, even if your account is closed, you can apply again to become an Amazon affiliate.
Amazon affiliate eligibility guidelines
Amazon has strict policies on where its services and products can be advertised. Websites or platforms that do not qualify to be affiliates are referred to as ‘unsuitable’ sites. If you are planning to become an Amazon affiliate, you need to make sure that your platform or website DOES NOT:
promote or contain sexually explicit or obscene materials
promote violence or contain violent materials
promote or contain false, deceptive, or defamatory materials
promote or contain content that is hateful, harassing, harmful, invasive of another’s privacy, abusive, or in any way discriminatory
promote or are involved in illegal activities
violate any intellectual property rights
Additionally, your websites and content should not be directed toward children. It should not collect or disclose information about children under 13 years of age (in the US.) It should be compliant with all local child protection laws.
How to create Amazon affiliate links
Now that you have created your Amazon associate account, it is time to start making some money. The most common way to earn money as an affiliate is through affiliate product links. The most common way to create affiliate links is using the ‘Product Linking’ tool. Here’s how you do it:
Login to your associate central account
Navigate to the ‘Product Linking’ drop-down menu and click on ‘Product Links’
Use the search bar provided to search for a product on Amazon. You can also directly input the ASIN if you have a product in mind
Click on the ‘Get Link’ button to the right of every relevant result to get the link
Use the generated link to promote the product on your website or social media feed
Your ad can be customized to be text-based or image-based or a mix of both
Alternatively, you can also use the SiteStripe feature to directly create links from the Amazon retail platform. To use the SiteStripe feature, you need to have the same account for associate central and the Amazon retail platform. You can see the tool at the top of any Amazon (retail) page. You can use the SiteStripe tool to create an affiliate link for any product, all you need to do is visit the product page.
You can create multiple types of links using SiteStripe including text, image, text + image, or custom native shopping ads. In all these cases, your store ID and tracking ID are already included in the link.
Note: You can also view your Earnings Summary report using SiteStripe. You’ll need to log in to your associate central account first to ensure privacy.
Amazon affiliate commission
There are three payment methods available to affiliates:
Direct deposit: You can get direct deposits if you provide Amazon with your banking information. You need to earn at least $10 before Amazon will deposit the money.
Cheque: You can get a cheque from Amazon if you provide your mailing address. The minimum payment for cheques is larger. You need to earn at least $100 and it will cost you a $15 cheque-processing fee.
Amazon gift card: Amazon will send gift cards to your primary email address. The minimum amount that Amazon will send you is $10.
Note: Money earned through the affiliate program is deposited or sent within 60 days after the end of the calendar month.
How to earn money as an Amazon affiliate
There is a lot of work that goes into creating a successful affiliate partnership with Amazon. Don’t forget that getting paid depends on conversions. You don’t get paid just for clicks. So, if you’re serious about being an Amazon associate, you need to be smart about promoting Amazon and relevant product listings.
The first thing you need to ensure is that your content or websites follow Amazon’s strict guidelines. This is a long list, so I suggest you read it thoroughly to make sure you don’t miss key details. Once you make sure you are compliant with all of Amazon’s guidelines and policies, it is time for you to start optimizing your content.
Find your niche
It’s important to find a niche you are comfortable writing or creating content about. Once you find a niche for which you can regularly create content, you need to find products and product categories that align with your interests.
Know nothing about home decor? You’re going to burn out and end up creating uninteresting content if you decide to pivot your website around the topic. Love video games? Write about them. Make sure you create affiliate links for products related to gaming like consoles or physical copies of video games. Many affiliates tend to create review-focused content so as to promote products directly on their platforms. While you don’t necessarily have to follow the beaten path, it’s always good to keep an open mind about how you want to kickstart your affiliate journey.
Keep creating content regularly
To be a successful Amazon affiliate marketer, you need to create a large following that always comes back for more content. The only way to keep people coming back is to keep up with that demand. This is why you need to put up new content regularly.
Innovate with different mediums
Keep innovating with different types of content to attract a new audience. Whether it is blogging, video content, or even listicles, the key is to make sure your content never gets stale. If you’re a blogger, you could try out a new video format to review Amazon products. Don’t forget, an Amazon affiliate is always trying to make a sale. There’s plenty you can do to endorse a product in an engaging fashion. Just don’t keep doing the same thing forever.
Every search engine depends on keywords to provide users with the most relevant search results. The first thing you need to do after finding your niche is finding your target keywords. Even if you have a large following already, it is never too late to expand your influence. You can use tools like Google Keyword Planner or Ahrefs to find suitable keywords for your website or blog. Are you reviewing a specific product? Use product-related long-tail keywords or the exact keyword in your URL to make sure customers knock at your doorstep for information about the product.
For all things related to Amazon keyword research, you can sign-up to SellerApp. The platform combines actionable data from Amazon and expertise to provide sellers with the best keywords for their listings.
You should now have a fairly good idea of how the Amazon Associate Program works and how you can benefit from it. While the idea of earning a steady income while working from the comfort of your home does sound appealing, it is important to understand that Amazon affiliate marketing is not easy. Your incentives are entirely based on conversions. This means you need to tailor your content to sell more. This is easier to do for people who already have a reputed website or a large social media following. For those looking to start from scratch, this is a much harder endeavor. However, like all things in life, smart work and perseverance can quickly catapult you towards affiliate success.
How much can you earn from affiliate marketing? Well, the sky’s the limit!
Have any more questions about Amazon affiliate marketing or are you interested in making your fortunes as an Amazon seller? You can write to us at email@example.com or leave a comment in the comments section down below.
Arishekar N has over five years web development experience and is the senior digital marketing strategies at SellerApp, Specialist in SEO, SEM and best conversion rate optimisation strategies that deliver industry leading ROI. Arishekar has helped companies through more effective search engine marketing and SEO strategies. He is most passionate about working with e-commerce companies.