Amazon affiliate links can be distributed via social networks, including Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. These social networks can also be used to increase traffic to your own website, and that means you are no longer dependent solely on search engine traffic for visitors.
Amazon affiliate links and social networks
Amazon affiliate links may be posted in social networks. However, it is important that you follow Amazon’s guidelines and always pay attention to the conditions of use for the respective network, because they are subject to change. For a long time, the social platform ‘Pinterest’ was strictly against users sharing affiliate links. That policy eventually shifted and affiliate links are now permitted. You can find more information in the article Now Allowed – Affiliate Links at Pinterest.
What is allowed on the Amazon Associates Program?
The distribution of affiliate links is permitted, as long as the social media account where the links appear is operated by the associate who is posting them. Associates need to update their account information in Associates Central to include the exact social network URL of where the affiliate links will appear. On Twitter, it is necessary that the account is verified. A verification on Twitter is shown with a blue checkmark, which is displayed next to the user name. For more information on verifying your Twitter account, please visit: support.twitter.com/articles/313322?lang=en
What is not allowed on the Amazon Associates Program?
Sharing Amazon affiliate links in social networks is not permitted if you are an Amazon associate and not the owner of the account sharing the link. Furthermore, associates are not allowed to use Facebook apps to distribute affiliate links.
Identifying affiliate links in social networks
Affiliate links are considered advertising and must therefore be disclosed as such. For this purpose, you can include a note in the immediate vicinity of the link. This also ensures transparency for other users of the social network.
Users must be told that you would receive a fee if they make a purchase through one of your affiliate links. However, please do not ask your audience to buy through the link in order to support your business as this is not allowed by the Amazon Associates Program.
Here is an example disclosure:
‘The links used are affiliate links. By buying through the links I may receive a commission for the sale. This has no effect on the price for you.’
YouTube and affiliate marketing
On YouTube, affiliate marketing can be used as an additional source of income, alongside widespread sponsorship. This makes especially good sense when it is a product-related video. This may, for example, be an experience-based review or the test of a particular product. Affiliate links can be inserted into the YouTube description field below the videos.
It is important, as with the articles on your website, to be honest with your viewers or followers. Always keep in mind that you should deliver value and focus on high-quality content. This is both good practice for building a readership and will also mean that you’re not in danger of anyone questioning your credibility.
- Tip: an affiliate link on YouTube should always be inserted at the beginning of the video description. This increases the chance that it will be clicked.
YouTube and your own website
YouTube offers the additional functionality of info cards that bring interactive elements to your videos and allow you to point to a specific URL. The info cards are displayed in the upper right corner when the corresponding video is played.
You can define when and how often an information icon with a link can be shown within your own individual videos. Likewise, different descriptions and anchor texts can be included with the links.
To create links to your own website with the information icon, you must first verify the website and then link it to the YouTube channel. Both options can be found in the extended channel settings of your YouTube account. Also, with a single Google account, you can create multiple YouTube channels that can be used on different websites.
It also makes sense to embed the videos uploaded to YouTube in appropriate articles on your website. If the videos are viewed through your site, this increases the visitors’ dwell time on pages, which in turn has a positive impact on the site’s Google ranking.
- Tip: YouTube also allows you to hide the player controls and player actions when embedding videos. This way, visitors cannot rewind or see any additional content that might distract them from your own website.
Other ways to use social networks in affiliate marketing
For many bloggers or website operators, search engines are the only traffic source. Social networks can be a new and significant traffic source for your website, provided that your social networks are actively used. This means that your site has the advantage of not being solely dependent on search engines for traffic. If your search engine rankings fall, you’ll still have traffic coming to your site from your social accounts.
Platforms like Facebook are also ideal for creating community, sharing, commenting and getting ‘Likes’. This increases the organic reach of your own posts to Facebook users, which in turn can contain links to your website that people can click through to. The focus should not be limited to the number of Likes for your own page. It is much more important to have Facebook fans who are genuinely interested in the topics which you are covering, and who are more likely to consistently interact with posts as a result.
To achieve this, it is important to create relevant and high-quality content. You need to understand your target group as accurately as possible. This helps ensure that your content is well received and that you’re responding to changes and trends.
Likewise, you should post regularly and with a certain continuity of style. Also, try different times for publishing your posts and note the differences in reach (Facebook can provide this information). This way you can get a picture of the times in the day your posts tend to get the most attention.