Friends with Money: How the Amazon Affiliate Program Can Jumpstart Revenue

The dream of many, if not all, website owners is to one day be able to earn an income through their website or blog. With an expanding reader base for websites of all types, it isn’t difficult to find at least a few readers who are interested in your content. Of course, as we all know, having only a few readers might be wonderful for some, but having a consistent stream of visitors is the only way website owners can hope to create revenue.

Friends with Money: How the Amazon Affiliate Program Can Jumpstart Revenue

While Google AdSense gives owners the option of adding advertisements to their site, the popularity of ad blocking software has proven to be a hurdle for most blogs and websites. Amazon Associates, the Amazon affiliate program, has many more options for users who would like to link to products sold on Amazon, instead of just banner ads.

While the program isn’t for everyone, many site owners are able to find a way for Amazon Associates to work for them. When you think of your website, are you able to think of ways you can easily and naturally include affiliate links? If so, Amazon Associates might be the program for you.

The Program

Amazon Associates has been running longer than most realize, since 1996. While most of us can only remember the riveting songs our modems played as we connected to the internet, Amazon was busy helping larger websites earn money while simply linking to Amazon products. For the past 12 years though, the program that we know today has been helping monetize websites and blogs, and expanding their advertisement offerings.

While their commission payouts sometimes aren’t as large as you’d find on Google AdSense, or another affiliate marketing program, most users are more willing to click on an Amazon ad because it’s a trusted company. With Amazon Associates you can sign up for free, and get to work placing the sort of ads you’d like to see on your site. If you’ve never used ads before, you’ll want to work on just one page at a time, and if something doesn’t work, try a different angle. Most websites go through a lot of different edits in order to find what works for them, and even then, they always need to continue changing things around in order to stay on top.

Amazon Associates links can net you up to 15% of a product’s price.

The amount you’ll make using the program is dependent on a number of different factors, but it’s primarily the amount of traffic coming to your page. If you run a review site, or any site where you are recommending items, your readers will want to know you run a trustworthy site, so your content should always be your number one priority. If readers believe you are only linking to products that cost more, or because there is a benefit only for you, they will eventually stop visiting your site and go elsewhere.

With that said, your links can net you up to 15% of a product’s price, but it varies depending on which category the product is sold. If you don’t run a specific type of website, you can still use banner ads that link to specific categories. If you do run a website where you are consistently recommending items, you may also want to look into the Amazon Store, in which you create a small online store, complete with it’s own checkout page, that is run through Amazon.

Tailoring Your Site

So that brings us to how you can tailor your site so that you have great content that works well with your Amazon Associates ads. As stated, your content should speak to your visitors with good information, or just great entertainment. Once you start to gain loyal readers, you can begin to reach out and ask them what they would like to see more of, and plan for new content that can easily link to Amazon products as well.

For example, if you run a blog on how to sew, having reviews on various sewing machines is a no-brainer, but you need to build trust with your readers before they’ll take your advice. Even if the visitor doesn’t purchase the item you linked to, you’ll still end up with a commission since they followed your link to Amazon. This puts less pressure on you to link to higher paying categories, and your recommendations on sewing equipment, for example, can also include accessories such as scissors or beginner kits.

 Do not let the payout dictate your content, experiment often with how to get users to follow your links.

While you should not let the payout dictate your content, you should continually look for ways to naturally add in your affiliate links and ads. Changing up how you display ads and refer your visitors to Amazon is good practice, and visitors won’t normally mind as long as ads don’t interfere with their experience on your website. Experiment often with how to get users to follow your links, there are plenty of good ideas on forums and blogs that teach others how to run their own blogs, so do your research. Remember, what may work amazingly for one person, won’t always work for you, so don’t become discouraged if your experiment doesn’t net the gains you thought it would.

Amazon Associates is a trusted program that won’t go out of business anytime soon, and because it’s free it’s an incredibly easy way to start working on monetizing your blog or website. If you’ve heard others talk about the program, and all of the income they’ve been able to generate through the years, be sure to see how long they have been using the program.

While Associates may not be the quickest way to break into eCommerce, it’s a fantastic option for those who love to connect with others about their passions, create a space where you can entertain others, and generate the money that is needed to keep up the cost of running the site. Your blog or website could become your full-time job, and Amazon Associates can definitely help you get there, as long as you focus on content and keeping up with those connections.

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