TUTORIAL: How To Make Money From The Amazon Affiliate Program
You’ll have heard alot about passive income so far on your money making journey.
Most make it sounds like all you do is sit on a beach and get paid all the time.
There is some truth to this, but there is the reality also that all forms of money making involve doing some work.
This is a good thing as it’s only through doing stuff that we actually learn and evolve.
‘Make money online’ is one of the most searched phrases on the internet.
In fact, I came up with 2.2billion searches last time I checked.
This tells me that many people are interested in the subject of making more money. Although not everyone admits this ofcourse.
It’s one of my favourite topics to write on, not necessarily because the focus is on the money itself, but rather because of the creativity required.
People usually aren’t short on money, they’re usually short on creativity.
As such, I am super keen on practical ideas anyone can model to make some money ethically.
Affiliate marketing is one such avenue for making extra money online.
I previously highlighted the importance of Affiliate Marketing in 85 Ways To Make Extra Money.
This way of making money is an enigma to most people, but it can be worthwhile if you take the time to actually figure it out.
Some subscribers and people on THP Facebook group have asked about Affiliate Marketing as a way to make passive income.
This tutorial should be your guide and the beginning of that journey of learning and application.
I’ve had to do the same as I tried to work out ways of keeping The Humble Penny revenue generating and sustainable.
I put the time in and spent months experimenting.
Therefore, what I am writing to you about today is not an idea. It’s a tried and tested path to making extra money.
If you apply consistent effort, you could soon start to add hundreds and thousands of pounds to your income monthly.
Today, we dive into an introductory aspect of affiliate marketing. I am writing about this so that you can see how easy it is for you to get started with.
It’s also something anyone can do from anywhere (e.g. at home etc) and in any country.
In fact, at the end of this blog post, I expect that you’ll have enough to take the necessary steps towards making more money online.
The Amazon affiliate program is just one avenue for using affiliate marketing to make extra money.
However, it’s an important one that cannot be ignored, and it’s necessary for getting started.
So why not experiment? There is pretty much zero risk!
What Is Affiliate Marketing?
There are broadly two general ways of making money.
1) You sell your own stuff e.g. your own products you created or even invented.
2) Or you sell other people’s stuff that they created or invented.
Affiliate marketing is all about #2. That's why this is quite compelling because the initial hard work of creating a product has already been done for you.
You now just need to market and sell it if you believe in it! This particular point is important as you don’t just want to market for the sake of it.
Marketing and selling are about trust and understanding people and their problems.
In the #2 scenario, you are the affiliate – A fancy word for a middleman. Your primary job is to market and sell a product or service, and for doing that, you make a commission.
You’re not going to knock on people’s doors here. This all happens in a more automatic fashion on the internet via things called cookies (more below).
If you want a deep dive into Affiliate Marketing, feel free to join the waiting list for my course on this subject:
Brilliant!! You are now subscribed to the waiting list for my Affiliate Marketing course. Keep an eye out via email 🙂
What Is Amazon Associates And Why Use It?
Amazon Associates is Amazon’s own affiliate program, which pretty much anyone can join.
It’s essentially the marketplace for anyone who wants to promote Amazon products.
The program is a relationship between Amazon (the seller of products) and you (the marketer). It entitles you to a commission when someone clicks on your link and makes a qualifying purchase.
Below is a rate card for the commissions you can earn:
Note that you make a different commission percentage depending on what you’re marketing. E.g. You get 5% for books and 10% for Handmade stuff.
It’s important to note that there are different Amazon sites, and therefore different rates by country.
When I started using Amazon Associates, things started off slowly as you’d expect. It was an experiment and I enjoyed looking behind the scenes to see what was working.
Below is my screenshot from the first month or so:
I made all of £2.82 from £45.55 worth of sales! Far from impressive right? Note the high conversion rate of 9.23%.
This means that of the 65 people who clicked on my affiliate links, 6 people (9.23%) made a purchase.
It was on reviewing this data that I began to see the potential.
Note that I made this income with little one-off effort. But this is not a one-off income source. The items will continue to sell for the foreseeable future.
Whenever you can make £10 – £20 in affiliate income, you can potentially scale that to make thousands if you know how.
But note that you’ll without a doubt have a slow start too, but this is all part of the learning.
The key is not to give up if you are not seeing immediate results.
Too many people I come across give up too easily and the root of it is that they don’t really understand affiliate marketing.
Head over and sign up for the Amazon Affiliate Program. It’s FREE to join and approvals are fast.
Before you start posting links, ensure you read their Operating Agreement as there are rules you have to abide by.
Here are a few other reasons why Amazon is definitely one you should not ignore:
1. Amazon is a search engine – It is the 3rd largest search engine in the world after Google and YouTube.
Think about it. You can literally buy anything on amazon and have it delivered within a day.
2. Amazon is a trusted brand – This means it is the go-to place for people to buy stuff. This trust also translates into value as you can see in Amazon’s valuation as a business.
3. Amazon makes it easy – You can get started with this in minutes. Amazon approve affiliates quickly because they want you marketing for them.
4. Amazon is addictive – No one goes on Amazon to buy one thing typically. Here’s the interesting bit –
Let’s say I recommended my favourite Productivity Planner and someone clicked through to buy it.
After buying, they then decided to also buy a brilliant book on mind maps in the same category.
And then after that, they bought some organic shea butter and some toys for their children.
As a result of how great Amazon Associates works, I’ll get a commission on ALL the above purchases.
Even that blew my mind when I learned about it!
The thinking is that you brought that customer to the marketplace and you get rewarded for their additional purchases.
5. Amazon has high conversions – The conversion rate I showed you earlier is a small indication of the fact that Amazon has a high conversion rate.
This is because, once people have read your review of something you recommend, they make a purchase because they naturally trust Amazon already.
6. Amazon is a mega-seller – The platform literally sells millions of items per day and have something for everyone to market no matter the season.
What Is A Cookie?
Earlier, I referred to cookies as the thing that makes all this marketing and selling possible.
A cookie is a small (text) file that is saved on your computer’s browser directory. The cookie essentially remembers the actions of anyone who clicks on a link you’re marketing.
This is how Amazon is able to track purchases people have made and therefore pay you a commission.
The important thing to note is that the cookie has a duration. I.e. A period of time after which this tracking ends.
This duration varies from one company to another and for Amazon, it is 24 hours!
Amazon is notorious for its short cookie length, which they also call sessions.
In practice, this means that if someone clicks your link today and does not buy within the next 24 hours, you do not get the commission.
Cookie durations vary alot. They are typically 30 to 60 days, although some can last as long as 12 months!
How Can You Start Making Good Money On Amazon Associates?
Everything you’ve learned above so far is the ‘seed’. For the seed to grow, it needs to be planted on some ‘land’.
That ‘land’ usually takes the form of a platform that generates and controls traffic.
Such a platform builds an audience over time as a result of delivery value again and again.
There are 4 ways I’d recommend you do it:
1. Start A Blog
This is by far the best way in my opinion for leveraging affiliate marketing.
Blogs that make money typically generate 50% of their income from Affiliate Marketing alone!
I can certainly attest to this myself having been running this site and generating revenue for it.
Blogs are so cheap to start that I can’t believe many people aren’t!
Note though that you don’t have to start a blog primarily to make money because you’ll get frustrated and give up.
You need to find a way of adding real value to people through your platform.
If you want to learn the mechanics of starting your own blog, then read my TUTORIAL: How To Start A Successful Blog.
I also recommend that you join my 7-day Free course covers all other aspects of blogging that you’ll no doubt have questions about:
FREE How to Start an Impactful Blog Course
In this 7 day email course I will teach you exactly How to start your own Successful and Impactful blog, sort the techy bits, attract followers, build a tribe and even begin Making Passive Income from it!
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2. Start A Podcast
Again, this is very similar to a blog because it is all about content creation and adding value to an audience.
Affiliate income is then generated through sponsorships of the podcast.
A brilliant example of this is Entrepreneurs On Fire aka EOFire.com by John Lee Dumas.
3. Create a Site with an Affiliate front-end
I really like this idea as it’s one that alot of people don’t think about.
A site that does this very well is called This Is Why I'm Broke.
When you visit the site, you’ll immediately find cool stuff for boys and girls that you want to buy.
If you pay closer attention, you’ll realise that they’ve basically done the hard work of curating unique products for you and me to buy.
For providing that amazing value in one place, they need to be rewarded somehow.
Ever wonder where they get those products from? They certainly don’t hold them in some warehouse.
They’ve essentially found various online shops e.g. Amazon, Target etc that have these products and become affiliates for them.
As such, they are then presenting a front-end image from those sites for you and me to buy.
If you click on those images and make a purchase, you go directly to Amazon or Target!
In this way, they’re a perfect middleman. Brilliant huh?
4. Use Social Media
This final way is one that anybody and everyone with a social media account can get involved with.
You simply share your affiliate links on social media images and posts and make sure you disclose that they’re affiliate links!
Notice what’s common between 1,2,3 and 4?
You can build a massive audience and generate alot of traffic over time if you’re patient.
It is this traffic and the audience that you give alot of value over time, which converts into recurring passive income.
I do have to stress, you must provide value. This is the top priority!
Passive income isn’t just passive as such. It first requires work, which then creates a compounding machine.
I should mention that once you have chosen your platform vehicle above, you then need to learn the strategies unique to those vehicles.
This is why I recommend you join the waiting list for my affiliate marketing course:
Brilliant!! You are now subscribed to the waiting list for my Affiliate Marketing course. Keep an eye out via email 🙂
Let's Talk Trust & Transparency
I have saved this for last because it is the most important thing you need to understand.
For most people, even after reading this, it is sadly not going to sink in. As a result, all their efforts will be a waste.
The most important aspect of any form of marketing and selling is to build genuine trust with someone or an audience.
The number one way to build that trust is to be honest and transparent.
I am highlighting these in bold deliberately because I don’t want you to waste your time.
If you want any success in affiliate marketing as a whole (not just via Amazon), then you need to prioritise these aspects.
What I am referring to here are affiliate disclosures. People are not stupid, so don’t treat as such.
Making it clear that you have affiliate links is not just an Amazon requirement, but a requirement by law.
So read the guidelines carefully. More of this in the affiliate marketing course above.
People will pay a premium for honesty and transparency. In fact, it could lead to you building an army of true believers.
You might be thinking – If I tell people about these affiliate links, they won’t buy from me. Wrong!
It’s exactly why people will buy from you. It’s rare for people to be honest and transparent in business dealings, as such, you’ll stand out.
You can see an example of this in my Best Resources page.
To conclude, I hope you’ve found this tutorial very helpful in giving you the confidence and insight to explore affiliate marketing.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with trying to make more money. In fact, you’ll grow in the process of trying to.
Good marketing and selling are all about helping people.
First, you listen to them, then you try to find a product or service that you truly believe in that solves that problem.
It has to be done honestly and ethically, whilst offering real value.
Amazon Associates is a good place to start that journey to recurring passive income. Feel free to write me if you have any questions.
- How To Start An Impactful Blog
- Why You Must Create Your Own Website To Thrive
- How To Choose And Thrive In Your Blog Niche
- 7 Ways To Make Money Blogging
- Coaching To Launch Your Side Hustle
What Is Your Experience of Affiliate Marketing? And of the Amazon Affiliates Program? Please comment below!
Do please share this post if you found it useful, and remember, in all things be thankful and Seek Joy.