Amazon Affiliates: How to get started

The Amazon affiliates program is one of the best-known and most lucrative methods of making money from a blog.

If it’s also your goal, I’ll tell you how it works, how to get started in the Amazon affiliate program now and some tricks to get more out of it.

As well as some WordPress plugins that will help you create the links, create international links, and get more commissions.

What are Amazon affiliates?

Amazon Affiliates is a collaborative program with which you enter into an agreement with Amazon to recommend their products in exchange for commissions.

How does it work?

This will interest you both from the affiliate point of view, and from the consumer point of view.

  • The Amazon Affiliate system consists of generating special links linked to an identifier of the affiliate that generated them. Let’s call it “Affiliate A”.
    For example, this would be a special link with an example id “affiliateExampleID-21”:
  • When someone clicks on one of those links, A cookie is installed in the browser indicating that you entered from an “Affiliate A” link.
    • If products are added to the cart from the same browser, this cookie will last until the purchase is complete, up to 30 days, or until you enter a link from another affiliate.
    • If nothing is added to the cart in 24 hours, the cookie will no longer be valid. After that time, even if a purchase is made later, nothing will be assigned to “Affiliate A”.
  • If the person entered before making a purchase from a link of «Affiliate B», then the cookie is overwritten, keeping the association with «Affiliate B». It applies “the last win” so to speak.

What commissions does the program offer?

Currently, since a change introduced this year, the optimum is to link products directly. This is since the highest commissions are received when the person who enters the link buys said product that you have linked.

If the visitor buys something else, you also get a commission, which will be higher if it is of the same category and much lower if it is from a different one.

When do Amazon affiliates pay you?

The Amazon affiliate program pays you when you reach a minimum of € 25 if you have chosen to charge by transfer or an Amazon coupon. Payment is made two months later.

For example, commissions accrued in October will be paid in late December or early January.

How to get started with Amazon affiliates?

What requirements must be met to join?

To be part of the Amazon Affiliate program there are not too many requirements and it is free.

  • You will need an Amazon account.
  • You need to have a website or blog, I think it is not possible in principle to become an Amazon affiliate without having a website.
  • The content of the web must be appropriate, its own, and of quality.
  • You will not be able to monetize with Amazon affiliates from websites or blogs on free platforms, such as WordPress.com for example.
  • In some cases such as in Germany, they ask you to be registered as a business (Gewerbeanmeldung). It cannot be done as an individual.

How to register with Amazon affiliates?

Getting started is really quite simple. You just have to enter, for example, amazon.es affiliates.

  • You will have to create an account or log in with your Amazon account. You can use the same Amazon account for all countries.
  • They will ask you for information about your website or websites, such as theme, number of followers, type of traffic you receive, etc.
  • You can immediately start entering links on your website, but in principle, your account will not be validated until you get sales. At that time they will possibly check your website to see that everything is in order.
  • In theory, Amazon could cancel your account if you do not get a sale in about 90 days. So it is recommended that you wait to register when you have everything ready and a certain volume of traffic.
    If this happens, you can also reapply for registration.

How to create Amazon affiliate links?

There are many facilities to create affiliate links, which allow you to create special links with which to get program commissions.

Methods of creating special links

  • From the affiliate administration panel (on PC) you can search for products and get the special link.
  • With the Amazon affiliate web bar, which appears within the Amazon page itself.
  • With Plugins on your website (I will tell you more about WordPress Plugins below).

What is the Amazon ASIN?

It is an element that you will be especially interested in knowing once you join the Amazon affiliate program. It is a unique code that Amazon applies to its products.

This code will allow you in many cases to locate products, search for them in other Amazon stores in another country and is used by the plugins to create the links.

You will find this code in the URL and in the product description on the Amazon website.

In the case of books, the ISBN is used.

Create special links from the pane

In the bar that appears when you access your Amazon Affiliates panel, you can directly search by-products, either by name or ASIN.

By clicking on the button to the right of each product “Get link” you have different options to obtain a code with links and include a small image if you want.

By clicking on the arrow to the right of the button, the following Pop-Up will appear with the link. You can choose to shorten it if you prefer.Get an Amazon Affiliate Link

How to use the Amazon web bar

In principle, the web bar will appear on the Amazon website when you are connected to your account (it must be the same account with which you have registered with Amazon Affiliates).

From this bar, you can get text links, text with image (products only) in a similar way as I explained before, or share directly on Facebook or Twitter.

If it does not appear or you want to hide it, check in the Amazon affiliates panel, in “Account Settings” – “Affiliate Web Bar Options”.

Beware of affiliate links

Something you should take into account if you use these methods to generate your links is that including them does not affect your positioning, for this:

  • Do not use keywords for which you want to position as the text of the links to Amazon.
  • Likewise, always mark these links as Nofollow (plugins do this automatically, or if you grab the full link code from Amazon tools).

Can I sign up for the Amazon affiliate program for multiple countries?

In principle, yes, and it is recommended if you have visitors from several countries.

There are certain limitations since in some countries you can only register if you are a resident. But in most, you will be able to register

To get more out of it, the ideal would be to use a plugin to locate the links.

Amazon One Link

Amazon also has a system called OneLink, but only from Amazon.com.

The operation of Amazon OneLink is that you generate links to Amazon.com, and Amazon is in charge of redirecting the visitor who accesses the corresponding Amazon store from another country. You have the option to configure the location based on the exact product, or that leads to a search page.

It may interest you if most of your traffic comes from the USA. If it’s not where you get a high volume of traffic, you might not be interested, as the products you want to promote may not be there. And currently interested in linking directly to products, if users reach a search page, it will not be considered a direct sale.

Plugins to create Amazon Affiliate links in WordPress

To start you must consider that to use or get the most out of the plugins you must have access to the Amazon API.

What are Shortcodes?

All of these WordPress plugins for Amazon Affiliates are based on the use of Shortcodes. These are codes that are enclosed in square brackets «()» can have certain parameters, for example, the Amazon ASIN in this case and they are included in the text.

And then the plugin when displaying the page or entry, will replace with the complete code necessary to display a link, an image, a button, a table …

What is the Amazon Affiliate API (Product Advertising API)?

An API is a system for connecting to a computer system by means of code, usually to extract information. In the case of the Product Advertising API, it is code access to extract updated information about Amazon products.

Through this API, the plugins connect to this database, to obtain the information, such as titles, prices, updated product descriptions.

Most plugins need you to have access to this API. And to have stable access to it, you must already have a certain frequency of sales with Amazon affiliates.

Amazon Link (Ideal plugin to start)

This simple free Plugin to create Amazon Affiliate links in WordPress is the ideal place to start if you want to geolocate affiliate links and you’re just getting started.

The best is that Basic links do NOT require API access. Although also tell you, that they are the links that convert the least unless you work on the presentation. But it is a start.

It is based on Shortcodes, but it also has a system to create them, with a search engine (if you have access to the API) or the ASIN, so you should not write the Shortcode yourself.

It has basic predefined templates and others customizable (by code).

See Amazon Link at WordPress.org

Amazon Associates Link Builder (Official Amazon Affiliate Plugin)

Amazon Associates Link Builder Plugin

It was the official free Amazon affiliate plugin for WordPress created by Amazon.

Comments about Amazon Associates Link Builder Plugin (AALB)

Personally, it is a plugin that did not give a good result. It gave me problems for many months until I decided to change.

Amazon affiliates for WordPress (wp) – Recommended

It allows a very attractive presentation of the affiliate links, with product boxes and comparative tables.

It also includes the option to geo-locate the links.

The use is then also made through Shortcodes, which you will have to enter manually. In the case of comparative tables, they are configured separately and then a shortcode associated with the table where you want to display is included.

Limits of use of the Product Advertising API

Since January 2019, limits of use of the Amazon Products API (Product Advertising API) have been applied, to avoid indiscriminate use that may saturate the service.

Therefore there is a limit of 1 connection per second, and an initial total of 8640 connections per day.

Plugins generally have a Caché system to store the information of each product, and thus prevent each visit to a URL on your website from supplying an API call.

However, in some cases, as I mentioned, there may be saturation problems or if there are no sales, you may lose access. And this can cause the plugin connected to the API to not work correctly,

Recommendations to earn income with Amazon Affiliates

  • Have a good volume of visits. Without visits, there are no sales. You can read here how to increase visits to your blog.
  • Create a product or comparative reviews. As I mentioned before, the remuneration system works better this way.
  • He recommends things with sincerity, that you would really recommend even if you didn’t take a commission.
  • Clearly and conspicuously present affiliate links.
  • If you have access to the API, use a Plugin to manage the presentation more easily.
  • Going head-on, aside from being a requirement for the system, it is better to report that you are including Amazon affiliate links. It also serves to build confidence in your readers.

Examples of posts with Amazon affiliate links

I leave you here a couple of example entries, so you can see different ways in which you can create entries with product links:

Considerations for Amazon not to block your affiliate account

You must also be careful to comply with all the conditions to avoid Amazon being able to cancel your affiliate account. This is usually also irreversible.

Here are some indications, but you will have to read all the considerations of the agreement and be aware of possible changes to it.

Precautions to avoid closing your account

  • That all your websites associated with the program have only appropriate content.
  • You must include notices of participation in the affiliate program.
  • Use outdated information neither directly from Amazon. Never copy information directly from Amazon. Especially for prices and valuations. You can only use this information if you connect to the API (with Plugins for example).
  • You can never redirect the user directly to Amazon (click on a supposed link to your website, and take them to Amazon).
  • You can only use the Amazon shortener, the Amazon special links should not be hidden by camouflaging themselves so that they do not appear.
  • You cannot include affiliate links in documents or email marketing: Be careful with this, check that with your Newsletter system you DO NOT send the complete content of the entries.
  • It is totally prohibited to impersonate Amazon or a partner or collaborator.

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