Amazon Associates has been around for a long time, since 1996, making it one of the oldest affiliate programs in existence. It is arguably a big reason why Amazon has been so successful. After all, affiliate marketing is free advertising, since the affiliate does not get paid unless something sells. Some people like to say that the commissions are too low, but as I point out below, there are plenty of great reasons to give it a try.
1. Commissions – This is the number one concern of potential affiliates, that the commissions seem too low to actually earn real money. Its true that the lowest tier is 4%, however the tiers increase up to 10% in affiliate commissions. Although these low single-digit commissions seem well, low, they can add up very quickly.
Essentially there are two ways that Amazon Associates earn a lot of money. The first one is by selling lower ticket items (let’s say less than $50) at a high volume, meaning they sell a lot. The second is for high price products, which don’t sell as often, but are huge payouts when they do sell. Remember, there are products listed at over $120,000, which can mean a commission of at least $1000.
2. Amazon is a trusted brand – Amazon has consistently ranked number one of the ‘most trusted’ brands in the US, even beating out Apple, in several respected studies. As an easily recognized brand Amazon is an easier transition for a potential buyer, rather than a website with a mystery-payment system that the person has never heard of before. In fact, with over 244 million users, there is a very good chance that the person following your link already has an account and regularly shops on Amazon.
3. Wide Array of Products – The array of products that are available is startling. And it keeps on growing. There are around 300 million different products available on Amazon.com and more unique products on the country-specific Amazons, such as Amazon.co.uk. There is pretty much something for everyone. This makes it essentially a one-stop shop which is great for the customer, as well as for you.
4. You benefit from whatever is bought – So, someone uses your affiliate link for some Widget that you recommended on your website, but they don’t buy that Widget. Instead they buy the “Pro 2000 Extreme Widget”. Even better, they buy every addon that comes with it, as well as that lawnmower they’ve been dreaming about buying. The best part about it is that you get a commission on all of those purchases. How it works is as long as the 24-hour browser cookie is active anything they buy will mean a commission for you.
Its true, what I have found is that people rarely buy just one item. Most likely the reason for this is because Amazon is the king of upselling, and getting buyers to add more products to their shopping cart.
5. Deals and promotions – One thing that has been particularly successful for us has been the frequent promotions, deals, and special bounties that are available for the Amazon Associate. They can mean an even bigger commission for you, and they are usually really good deals for the customer. A favorite is to promote Amazon Prime, which is a subscription-based program in which the buyer gets several different discounts, including free 2-day shipping.
6. Ease of use – As an Amazon Associate you gain access to several really professional ways of showcasing products. In addition, Amazon has an Associate Strip, which allows you to easily find products and create your unique affiliate links. The strip also has a tool for sharing your links on various social media sites, such as Twitter and Facebook. Beyond all that there are special addons for popular website platforms, such as WordPress and Joomla, which make for easy integration of the affiliate links. There are even some fantastic Amazon affiliate store PHP scripts, which are pretty simple to set up. My favorite is Fresh Store Builder, however there are a few others that are very nice as well.
7. An investment that grows – Many people who are just getting into affiliate marketing become frustrated with low or slow earnings. What they probably don’t realize is that it starts out as a form of residual income that can be used to pay a few bills each month, but it builds on the previous work, layer after layer, until there is a steady stream of money coming in. For those that continually work on creating more content and increasing their traffic, it adds up to a nice, fulltime income.
8. That shopping time of year – The jaw-dropping time of year in which sales peak are the shopping months between October through December. For many brick and mortar businesses this is the period in which they earn the majority of their annual profits. Its the same for internet businesses. We often see sales jump from a few hundred products per month all the way up to several thousand per month. Its an exciting time of year!
There are many other affiliate programs that exist and they all have their own benefits, but nobody can deny that the Amazon Associates program is among the best, if not the best available. There’s nothing to lose and everything to gain, so give it a shot!
Besides, its free.