Loest affiliate marketing a problem

Affiliate Marketing with Amazon as an Alternative to Google AdSense? The steadily increasing sales prove that the bill is paying off. Not least because the use of topic-related product links is less striking and therefore more user-friendly compared to display ads. This post tells you which Advantages and disadvantages of participating in the Amazon partner program and what sales you can expect.

Earning money with Amazon - how does it work?

Generating income with Amazon's affiliate program is no longer an issue that only affects niche blogs. The huge product selection on Amazon makes affiliate marketing an interesting financial option for numerous content creators and company blogs. By integrating product links into website content, five-digit amounts can be achieved.

How it works? If a user visits your blog and reaches the Amazon page via your affiliate link, you earn on every subsequent purchase. Amazon differentiates the purchases made into direct and indirect sales. If the user buys products from the same product category of the product you linked via your link, it is one direct qualified purchase. Sales from other product categories, however, count as indirect qualifying purchases and come with a much lower commission.

In any case, you should always link directly to a product page. This is the only way to count the sales triggered as direct purchases by the user. If, on the other hand, you link to category pages, all purchases made are considered indirect sales that will bring you only a small reimbursement of advertising costs.

Nonetheless, with affiliate marketing on Amazon, you will not only receive your commission for the products you have linked to. Every product placed in the shopping cart and purchased by the user is rewarded with a credit in the PartnerNet account.

Commissions in the Amazon affiliate program

Whereas the commission in the Amazon partner program used to depend on the amount of sales generated, the product categories are now set with a standard fee rate of up to 12 percent. The overview shows that some product lines are more worthwhile than others. However, you should keep in mind that the commission must always be assessed according to the size of the shopping cart.

Product categoryFixed standard fee ratesSpecial conditions
Amazon Fashion:

Clothing & accessories, shoes, handbags, purses, jewelry, watches, luggage, Amazon fashion women, men & children private label

 Direct Qualified Sales:
11 %Qualified sales per month = less than € 2,500
12 %Qualifying sales per month = € 2,500 or more
1,5 %Indirect Qualified Sales
Video game downloads, software downloads, Handmade10 % 
Books *, Kindle eBooks *, Cars & Motorcycles, Musical Instruments, Office Supplies, Baby Products, Cosmetics, Groceries, Health Devices, Pet Products, Pantry, Health & Personal Care7 % 

Furniture, hardware store, household, kitchen & dining room, patio, lawn & garden, electrical and hand tools

 Direct Qualified Sales
7 %Qualified sales per month = less than € 40,000
8 %Qualified sales per month = € 40,000 or more
1,5 %Indirect Qualified Sales

Outdoor activities, games and toys, sports and fitness

 Direct Qualified Sales:
6 %Qualified sales per month = less than € 7,500
7 %Qualifying sales per month = € 7,500 or more
1,5 %Indirect Qualified Sales
Software, Music, DVDs & Blu-ray, Video Games, Beer, Wine & Spirits, Business, Industry & Science5 %
Amazon devices:

Fire TV, Kindle and Echo devices and accessories

 Direct Qualified Sales:
4 %Qualified sales per month = less than € 7,500
7 %Qualifying sales per month = € 7,500 or more
1,5 %Indirect Qualified Sales
Computers, electronics, cameras, large electrical appliances3 % 
TVs and home theaters, smartphones and cell phones, tablet PCs without a contract, PS4 consoles1 % 
Gift vouchers0 % 
All other products3 % 

Source: Standard rates for the German Amazon website

Advantages and disadvantages of affiliate marketing with Amazon at a glance

Current forecasts make it clear that affiliate marketing is still a long way from past its zenith. On the contrary, the marketing discipline is proving to be a promising measure with regard to the increasing interest in user-oriented content.

Benefits of the affiliate program:

  • Amazon is one of the global players and offers its customers not only a huge variety of products but also above-average customer service. With the partner program at Amazon, you too benefit from the high level of customer loyalty.
  • The registration and integration of the affiliate links are possible without great technical know-how. Using the SiteStripe tool, you can easily create links and incorporate them into your articles.
  • If you manage your website via the WordPress instance, you also have the option of using plugins to present the products using clear product boxes.
  • For tips and tricks, the Amazon PartnerNet Resource Center offers lots of interesting contributions from members of the partner network. This is how you can learn from the experiences of seasoned affiliate marketers.
  • Affiliate marketing with Amazon is free of any logistical or payment-related effort. Your only job is to integrate links into your website and thus direct users to Amazon.
  • Enjoy the reliable payment of the commission.


  • The wide range of products from Amazon is both a blessing and a curse. In order for your affiliate marketing to work, you need to know which products are right for you. Not every product category is worth promoting via the Amazon PartnerNet. For example, in the field of technical devices (such as tablets, TVs, smartphones or consoles) it is less suitable, as there is only a 1% commission in this sector.
  • The cookie lifespan is limited to 24 hours at Amazon. If the user does not make a purchase after clicking on your affiliate link in this time window, you will not receive any commission, even if he makes up the purchase at a later point in time.
  • Without reach and traffic, you cannot hope for a sure-fire success with Amazon affiliate marketing.
  • Another disadvantage that not only Amazon but the entire digital advertising industry has to struggle with is so-called AdBlocker software. AdBlockers can be installed by the user and prevent any advertising from being displayed. In order to get around this in affiliate marketing, it is particularly important to include links that are relevant to the context.
  • A violation of the guidelines of the partner network can lead to exclusion by Amazon.

How to integrate affiliate links into your website

To participate in Amazon's affiliate program, you must first register for free on Amazon PartnerNet.

Image source: Amazon

You can then use the SiteStripe tool to create simple product links in the form of text, images, or text and images. You can easily implement the generated link in the relevant passage of your article.

If you operate your website via WordPress, there is also the option of integrating attractive product boxes via the Amazon Link Builder plugin and other plugins. Make sure that the plugins are GDPR-compliant and compatible with Amazon guidelines. The most popular plugin is AAWP because it accesses the Amazon API directly.

Tips for more success with the Amazon PartnerNet

You can generate significant income from the Amazon Affiliate Marketing Program. However, you should note the following:

1. Which product category do you serve?

Ask yourself this question before joining the affiliate program. You should only present and rate products that do not question the authenticity of your brand, but rather fit your subject area.

2. Put the customer benefit in the foreground

Instead of promoting the product, you should focus on the benefit for the customer. Think in advance what benefits the customer will get from the product and what problem it will solve for him. You should make this the focus of your presentation.

3. Rely on trustworthy product reviews

Every product has its downsides. Don't just tell your readers what they want to hear, instead present them with a balanced product review with pros and cons. Because at the latest when the readers look at the Amazon ratings themselves, they will also come across one or two flaws. On the other hand, if you are honest, you are offering your readers real added value.

4. Generate higher sales through SEO

When users find out about a product on your website, they are usually already doing so with a specific purchase intention. Make use of this knowledge: By using long-tail and generic keywords, you intercept the user in their search and ultimately redirect them through your content to the Amazon product page. Last but not least, traffic is one of the most important factors for good earnings. You should therefore always strive for a good ranking in the search results.

5. Use the advertising reimbursement report for optimization

Amazon provides you with a comprehensive overview of all sales and generated advertising reimbursements in the PartnerNet. You can use this analysis to understand which products work and which integration is the most suitable. Through constant optimization, you will be able to improve your income through affiliate marketing with Amazon in the long term.

Affiliate marketing is becoming a steady source of income through Amazon

The qualitative integration of product links with the help of the Amazon Affiliate Program can become a real sales magnet. As a trustworthy brand, the big player offers a number of advantages. However, always pay attention to authenticity when monetizing your content: Instead of the commission, you should always keep an eye on the customer benefits.

Originally published September 17, 2019, updated 12 May 2021

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