Amazon Affiliate Program
Most of us would have heard of the Amazon Affiliate Program, maybe you have even joined it and are trying to make some money with it. That’s what we Affiliate Marketers are here for, after all! 😉 And the Amazon Affiliate Program is one of the biggest and most well known affiliate programs out there, next to EBay Partnernetwork, Clickbank, LinkShare and so on.
The question when joining any affiliate program is always, will it be worth it to do so? Or will I be wasting my time? Well, I will tell you my story and let you decide!
First I want to tell you what brought on this post: I received my first check from Amazon in the mail yesterday!!! It was a great feeling, mixed with a bit of a let down, because to bank the check here in Australia it will cost me around $15 AUD, and that hurts, especially because the check is “only” $212.09 USD (The US Dollar and the Australian Dollar are very close in value at the moment).
So, after my excitement had died down a little, I had a look at the facts of how I had been going with the Amazon Affiliate Program, and then I thought I would let you know about it. So if you are thinking about Amazon, you have a little bit more to go on.
Here are some facts about the Amazon Affiliate Program:
- The regular referral fee for products from Amazon is 4%. This goes up to 6% after 7 referral sales in a month, and up to 6.5% after 31 sold products. Then to 7% when you have sold 111 products and so on….
- you can advertise via links & banners, widgets and even a so-called “a-store” which is a complete store you can develop to sell products. Have a look at the store I built for my Beach Decor website: Beach Decor Amazon Store You can either integrate the store into your website or you have a stand alone store. Their widgets are great, you can choose between many different ones to suit your site. I personally like the Carousel Widget very much (again, some samples on another site of mine: Mens Casio Watches)
- There are a few programs within Amazon where you can earn higher referral fees than 4%, like up to 15% with Endless.com (Shoes and Accessories), or 10% for Kindle, I think.
- The Amazon Affiliate Program pays its affiliates in several ways (and you can choose):
- get paid via Amazon gift card/certificate
- get paid via direct deposit (only if your bank account is in the United States)
- get paid by check
I started out with my Beach Website in February 2008. The site is built around an Amazon Store. The major goal of any website, and especially an affiliate site, is always to get traffic, because the more traffic the more sales, right? So it took quite a few months to get my site up and getting a few customers every day. Which means my earnings weren’t great at all at the beginning. I had months were I earned nothing at all, and others where I made $3, or $6. This started increasing over time, but it fluctuated greatly.
I had to elect to be paid via check – well, I didn’t have another option, as I am an Australian associate and have my bank account here. So I have to cop the steep bank fee here to deposit a foreign check. That’s why I set my minimum payment threshold at $200 USD, so it wouldn’t hurt so much.
Well – it has taken 2 years (2 YEARS!!!) for me to get paid my first check from Amazon. Quite unbelievable, isn’t it? My Beach website is on page 1 on Google for several of my keywords, so I get a fair amount of traffic, and it still took 2 years. That is an incredible amount of time.
I will keep going with my sites and the stores there, because they are now making me a little bit of money every month without having to do much any more, but when I think about the time that went into building these stores and updating them etc,… I have to question whether this is really worth it.
So here are a few things I want to point out and put up for comments:
- They are one of the biggest affiliate programs available. Shouldn’t it be possible for them to offer their affiliates to be paid via PayPal, or even offer international associates (and there are bound to be many of them!) to be paid via direct bank deposit? I am with other affiliate programs where this has never been a problem, why isn’t it available here?
- The referral fee is, in my opinion, extremely low. Sure, if you are selling bigger ticket items you might actually make some more money, but if you are selling just “normal” stuff like I do, then you are not going to make a lot of money even if you sell 30, or 100 products! And let me tell you, it takes a lot of visitors to make some sales.
- They do offer some of the best advertising tools around, and make it extremely easy to incorporate them into any website.
- Your best bet with this program seems to be to have a website that gets many, many visitors and sells products that are highly priced, like cameras for example. You could possibly be earning quite a few dollars a month. But it might be quite a lot of work to get there.
- Selling lower priced items won’t make you rich, it might not even buy you a coffee sometimes. This will turn out to be more of a hobby than a business.
So, there you have it. That’s my take on the Amazon Affiliate Program. I like the tools they offer their associates, and I like the fact that they are well established and known. I don’t like that we only get the smallest of percentages, and that they are so backwards with their payment structure.
I would love to hear of your successes or failures with Amazon, and what you think about their affiliate program. Leave a comment! – [28 March 2012 Sorry, guys, I have closed the comments now, it was just getting too much. You can always contact me via my email.]
Over and out – have to go and deposit my check! 😉
P.S. This post has been optimized for the 3 word keyword phrase xxx – I hope you can guess it! It came up with flying colors when I checked it in Micro Niche Finder so hopefully whenever somebody searches for xxx this post might eventually come up on Page 1 or thereabouts… just to let you know that I always try to optimize my posts for a keyword, and so should you!
Category: affiliate programs