Part 22: Applying to become an Amazon Affiliate
Never apply to become an Amazon Affiliate until you have published your website and have at least 10-15 unique and good quality articles on it. The Affiliate program is free to join but they do have an approval process. This process will involve someone from Amazon looking at your website to make sure that your website looks good, and more importantly has unique and useful content.
If they do not find that they will not approve your website. If you have followed this case study I have stressed throughout the importance of high quality content. This will be the real test for that. Amazon will approve your website and welcome you to the program if your website is of a good standard with great content.
Once you get approved then you do not need to get approval for any other websites that you build. You should also know that even when approved, if at a later stage Amazon find that your site has become unsuitable, they may terminate this agreement.
How to Join the Amazon Affiliate Program?
So assuming that you have enough content and that you have published your website then you can apply to the Amazon Associates Program. That is the name given to this affiliate program in the UK. I have provided a link below:
You will see that the program is free to join and easy to use. Amazon in the UK has over a million products and they are a trusted seller with many thousands of buyers. You can earn up to 12 % commission but the average is around 4-6 % as it depends on the type of product that you have on your review website, and the amount of sales you do in a particular month.
Navigate to the JOIN section and then click on the “Learn More” button. If you have an existing Amazon account then you can simply login using that. If you do not have an existing account then you will need to create one which is free. For this you will need either an email or mobile phone number.
Next you will have to fill out some account information which is basically your name and address. If you are from the US then there is also a tax requiremant element.
Then click on the next button to fill out your website details. This will include:
- The name of your website
- The URL of your website
- What is your website about?
You will then have to pick from the drop down menu how you found out about the program and also fill in a “CAPTCHA” form that proves you are not some type of robotic software creating fake Ids.
Finally there is a section where you are asked to read the Amazon Associate’s Agreement before clicking “Finish.”
You will then have to wait on an approval email from Amazon before you can begin to use the program. If you get an email that does not approve you to join, then you will need to do more work on your website and apply again.
The type of websites that get rejected are those with just a few short articles on them or those where other people’s content has simply been cut and pasted straight into your website.
If you have written your own work and made your website look professional Amazon will have no problems in approving you.
What to do when approved?
When you are approved you will get an Affiliate ID and it will look something like abcde-21. The 21 is the UK element of the code. Had you applied to become a US Amazon Affiliate then the code would look like abcde-20
For now all we are concerned with is that you have got approval and you can now start adding Amazon Affiliate links to your website. I will be showing you how to do that in the next section. For now though it is worthwhile looking through the Amazon Associates Central dashboard.
Look on the left hand column and you will see that it is broken down into sections. I would recommend reading though how the program works, the operating agreement, the advertising fees and the excluded products section.
It is easy to get distracted in there but if you understand the information I have shown above, it makes life a great deal easier moving forwards. The Education Centre is also worth a visit as are the discussion boards. You should not get over involved at those boards as they can become a distraction where people start to disect parts of the operating agreement.
It is much better to focus on adding content to your website than getting involved in debates over small issues.
When you login to your Amazon Associates account you can also find your Affiliate ID in the upper left hand corner. It is a code that is unique to you and should not be shared with anyone.
The principle behind your entire website is to help and inform your visitors about a particular topic. When they read your articles they may click on links that you have put in with your affiliate code on them. If they make a purchase at Amazon then the Associate Program will pay you a commission.
The Operating Agreement
I would highly recommend that you read the EU Associates Program Operating Agreement because it is there you find out just about anything you want to know about being an Amazon Affiliate.
Standard Advertising Fees
The percentage you earn for each product sold varies on the product type. The current fees can be seen by clicking the link below. Always check for latest fees. affiliate-program.amazon.co.uk/gp/associates/join/compensation.html
As an example as of February 2016 the fees were as follows:
So if you sold a cat basket at £50 Amazon would pay you 7% of £50 which would be £3.50
If you sold a wooden toy at £50 Amazon would pay you 5% of £50 which would be £2.50
If you sold a necklace at £50 Amazon would pay you 10% of £50 which would be £5.00
That would make you instantly think that it is better to build a website about shoes or jewellery; however that should not be the one element that makes your decision on building a website. You will in my opinion only every fully build out a website if you have a genuine interest in the subject.
It would be a big mistake to decide what to build your website on based on the commission terms from Amazon. The reality is that you could start a website about luggage but would quickly get bored with it as you have no will to write another article about a suitcase.
In addition to that, all of the 12 % commission markets are VERY competitive and would be hard to rank a website for those.
- Make sure that your website is live
- Apply to become an Amazon Affiliate
- Wait for approval
- When approved login to your Associate Account and read the Operating Agreement and other useful information.