If you’re new to the affiliate marketing model it can be a daunting task to determine the best programs to promote.
Specifically, is the Amazon Affiliate Program worth it?
How do you know?
What kind of research should you do?
I like to say that the problem with the information age is the information!
It can be overwhelming.
Where do you go? Who do you trust?
That said, I’m going to provide you with the facts. The pros and cons of the Amazon Affiliate Program so that you can make an informed, educated decision.
No hype. No spin. Just the facts!
First things first…
What Is The Amazon Affiliate Program?
The Amazon affiliate program is a way to monetize your blog, video channel, website or in some cases you social media profile.
Also known as “Amazon Associates”, it’s easy to sign up and get approved almost immediately.
When someone clicks one of your Amazon affiliate links, and they buy something within 24 hours, you get a percent (commission) of that sale.
Here’s a break-down of some commission percentages: (take note: as of April 2020 these are the slashed commission rates).
More about that later.
Is The Amazon Affiliate Program Worth It In 2021?
On any give day there are roughly 4.66 billion people actively using the internet as of late 2020. That’s 59% of the global population.
That’s huge. Especially for Amazon.
In the month of September 2020, Amazon had nearly 2.5 billion visits to its platform. 2.5 billion in one month!
It is, by far, the 3 most visited website in the US.
Which brings us to the Pros and Cons…
Amazon Affiliate Program – Pros
One of the key components in marketing is earning the trust of the potential customer. When people don’t trust you they don’t buy from you.
Plan and simple.
But once you build that trust, they are far more likely to do business with you and, hopefully, become a repeat customer.
Amazon has been around now for over 25 years. They are a solid, profitable and well-trusted company, known around the world.
As a new affiliate you probably have not had the time to build that trust or establish your brand, but as an Amazon Affiliate you would be able to inherit some of that cache’.
Trust goes hand in hand with brand awareness. Amazon is a household name – from the myriad of products they sell as well as their streaming media channel Prime.
82% of US households have a Prime membership. That’s over 105 million people.
How’s that for Trust and Brand Awareness?
Starting Is Easy
Unlike other affiliate programs that may have stringent requirements for entry, Amazon is much more beginner-friendly.
While having a website is a good idea, it is not necessary. You can use something called Parasite SEO (post coming soon) where you use a well-established site for your links.
YouTube, for example, will allow you to place affiliate links with your video content. LinkedIn will also allow you to drop affiliate links.
Word of caution: if you’re going to use the Parasite method, make sure you use multiple platforms.
You don’t want to be on only one as they can change their policy any moment and kill your business.
Wide Variety Of Products
Not only do they have literally millions of products, virtually all of them pay a commission. Almost anything you can think of can be found on Amazon which gives you many options to monetize.
So if you have a blog and naturally mention a product, chances are that Amazon sells that product. You simply create a link to it and voilà’ – if someone buys it you get paid.
How good is that?
Get Paid On Multiple Products
The Amazon Affiliate Program has a very good sales funnel, designed to upsell a customer after they add something to their cart.
What that means is that once they click on your affiliate link, if they buy one thing or a dozen, you earn a commission on everything – up to 24 hours!
Amazon Affiliate Program – Cons
Low Conversion Rate
The average conversion rate on affiliate links is 0.5 – 1 percent. If you do the math, that means you will need 100 – 200 clicks on your link to get a single sale.
This means you will need a huge amount of traffic to make any significant income.
Ever-Changing Complicated Operating Agreement
Obviously there are rules that Amazon wants you to abide by. Most companies have some form of a Terms Of Service (TOS) that dictate what your rights and responsibilities are and what theirs are etc.
Amazon calls theirs the Associates Program Operating Agreement. You will have to review this thoroughly and revisit it periodically as it changes quite a bit.
As far as I’m concerned, the commission rates for Amazon’s affiliate program were never great.
In my opinion, the only way to make a decent income is to be a mega site sending tons of traffic to Amazon via your affiliate link.
Amazon Affiliate Program – How To Start
Now, admittedly like many beginners I started as an Amazon affiliate. It was quick and easy to join and implement.
For one, the slashed commission rates:
This is a history of Amazon’s treatment of their Affiliates. Notice how as their volume went up the commission rates went down.
This is especially egregious when you factor in the fact that during the first 9 months of 2020, Amazon had more revenue than they did in all of 2019 and by the way 2019 was a record year.
Given this, if you still want to give it a shot just head over to Amazon and sign up.
Well there are the facts.
Hopefully you can use them to make an informed, educated decision. Personally, I believe there are better options.
Have you heard of Clickbank? It’s an Affiliate Network with a ton of, mostly digital, products you can promote and make a much bigger commission off of.
For me, most of the products I promote have to have two crucial components:
- Relatively Low Entry Price Point
- Recurring Commissions – it takes just as much effort to make a one-off sale as it does to make a sale with recurring commissions – why not sell the latter?
If you want to know more here’s my post on the Clickbank Network: How To Make Money With Clickbank
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