Let’s first examine the “bad” parts of Amazon affiliate marketing. Basically, these are the things you need to be careful about when working with a brand like Amazon.
So, what to watch out for Amazon affiliate marketing?
- This is not a get-rich-quick scheme. Without steady traffic to your site, without content relevant to the affiliate links you want to promote, without a healthy marketing campaign going on outside of your site, you might not earn much from this.
- Bad product picks could hurt your brand. Chances are good that if you’re including an affiliate link in your content, then you’re willing to put your full support behind the product. However, if the reputation of that product should sour with the public and you do not catch it, that recommendation of an untrustworthy product could hurt your brand.
- Analytics are limited. Unlike conversions made directly on your WordPress site, you’ll be limited in terms of what you can learn about the people making purchases through your affiliate links. While Amazon provides you with details about clicks and sales, you won’t get deep insights into who the consumer was and what they did on your site before they got to that point that you would with Google Analytics.
- Amazon mostly deals in physical products. For those of you hoping to promote software or other digital products (not including books) through affiliate links, you won’t be able to do so through this program.
- Commissions are not consistent. Although Amazon advertises that affiliate marketers receive up to 10% commission on purchases made through their links, many categories don’t pay out that well. You can find the commission structure here:
Bounty Events and Special Program Fees
Also to watch out for Amazon affiliate marketing, be sure to check the payouts for Amazon’s special “bounties”, which refer to promotions of Amazon’s digital services:
- Their policies are strict. Be sure to read through Amazon’s affiliate program policies carefully. Any violation of their policies is grounds for account suspension—something which could devastate if you build an entire website or store around affiliate links. Amazon has also been known to suspend accounts with no prior notice, so tread carefully.
- Affiliate links only work on the WordPress site. If you were thinking about using the Amazon Associates program outside of WordPress, you may want to rethink your strategy. According to Amazon’s guidelines, you cannot use affiliate links in email, nor can you even use them in on-site pop-ups. They have to be embedded on your website.
The one exception here is social media. You can use affiliate links to promote products on social media. However, if you intend on doing that, you must first add your social media accounts to your website list. You can do this during the setup phase (under “Profile”):
Or you can go in later and add your social media profiles to your list under Account Settings (under your email address at the top of the page):