How to Make Money with the Amazon Affiliate Program
Millions of people spend millions of dollars on Amazon each year – and you can get a cut of the revenue by incorporating Amazon’s affiliate program as part of your website content.
Suppose you’re running a gadget blog and you’re delighted with your new Kindle Fire. So you write a post describing the new features and how you find it even more useful than your old Kindle. In the course of your post you add a text link to the product page on Amazon.com. You might mention that other users love it too, judging from the overwhelmingly positive user reviews, and maybe mention something about the range of Kindle Fire accessories that are available.
You can see from the paragraph above how easy it is to work links to the product page naturally into your writing. Those are affiliate links and when a user clicks one of those links and buys from Amazon the wonderful team here at Genius Startup will get a small commission for referring a customer.
I think I can guess your next question.
How Much Can You Earn as an Amazon Affiliate?
One of the myths that float around about the Associate program is that it only pays 4% commission. That’s not quite correct.
The commission structure for general products starts at 4% but the rate rises the more items you sell per month. After you’ve sold 7 items, for example, your commission rate will rise to 6%. Take a look at the table below and you’ll see the advertising fee – which is what Amazon calls commissions – keeps rising up to a maximum of 8.5%.
How Do I Start?
It’s free to join the Amazon Associates program. Each geographical storefront has a separate program so there’s one for Amazon.com, Amazon.ca and Amazon.co.uk as well as for the stores in Germany, Japan, France, Italy, Spain and China. The rates I’ve mentioned in this post relate to the U.S. store but the rates for other regions are similar.
Account approval normally takes 24-48 hours.
Which Products Should I Promote?
Because Amazon sells just about everything you can imagine, you should be able to find a good selection of related products to promote whatever your site niche.
Always stick to products closely related to you site niche
If your blog focuses on compact cameras, don’t be tempted to work in promotions for SLR cameras just because they cost more and your commission will be bigger.
Readers looking for information about compacts are only looking for helpful information about which compact camera to buy. Concentrate on giving them that and visitors are much more likely to click through and make a purchase.
Should I Promote High or Low Price Items?
Low priced items fly into shopping carts because shoppers don’t think twice before buying them. Trouble is, the commission is low. For example, a book is likely to only make you an advertising fee of around $0.50 – $1.50.
On the other hand, large price items have much larger commissions, but people are more likely to hesitate before buying.
That means the best approach is usually to go for medium priced items around the $150 – $300 mark. At this price point your commissions are good and the items still sell quite easily. In most categories you can find plenty of items within this price range. There are literally hundreds of consumer electronics items in that price range, for example.
Banner, Widget or Text Links?
Inside Amazon Associates you’ll find a variety of ways to generate affiliate links. The easiest way to get a link on your site is by using a banner ad. Unfortunately. that’s about the least effective way to generate sales.
Same goes for widgets. Nice and easy, but they don’t convert well. Not only will you get less click-throughs because they look like an ad, but they tend to be clicked by people who are bored and not in buying mode.
By far the most successful way to refer a visitor to Amazon is by using a text link within the text of a post, like I did in the second paragraph of this post.
How to Write to Generate Sales.
Keep in mind you’re writing to help someone decide what to buy. Don’t try to sell them something.
Writing like that will make you seem like a pushy salesperson desperate for a sale.
Instead, think about the kind of things someone who is almost ready to buy wants to know. These are the easiest visitors to convert because in many cases they are just looking for a final piece of information to confirm that product X is right for them. If you are the one supplying that information you stand a good chance of bagging a commission.
Among the most common things potential buyers hit the internet to research are price, features and comparison to other products. Make sure you cover these three areas when you write along with any other useful insights you might have.
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