Being an Amazon affiliate does not have to be as hard as it looks. Often people complain about the short-lived 24 hour cookie and the low percentage commission rate, but it is possible to bring in significant income as an Amazon affiliate. I promote mainly Amazon.com, so all these tips apply to my experiences there.
Part of the art of selling Amazon goods is to get your reader onto the Amazon.com site and let them do the rest. Amazon spends millions of dollars per year analyzing conversion rates with different layouts and setups. They are the experts. Your job is catch shoppers as they enter their product search into Google, you inform them and pique the interest of the reader, and have them look forward to clicking through onto Amazon. Often, once they are there, they buy other items too.
Why are you reviewing a product?
When choosing a product to review, it is important to consider why you are reviewing a it, what is your goal. Unless you want to direct people on what not to buy, it is common sense to choose the very best quality highly reviewed and value priced items to write about and truly recommend, that you do want them to buy. As you become familiar with the niche, and its products, you will have even more of an insight into what shoppers in that niche are looking for, and what they want to avoid. Landocheese wrote an excellent article on How To Write Amazon Product Reviews on Seekyt
Choosing a niche
Picking a niche that you are personally interested in or have recently bought in, will give you a head start when it comes to discussing a product intelligently. If you want to try something different and new, spend some time reading a large number of reviews as you will learn a lot of slang and other (LSI) latent semantic indexing words that you can include in your article. You will also see what is important to shoppers. Once you know what that is, you can address that in your review article.
How to choose the very best products
There are a few ways of choosing the very best products to write about. If you are doing a gift suggestion list article, Amazon keeps a most wished for list and a most gifted list to help you choose popular items that people want.
For Top 10 or Top 5 Best lists or comparisons or single product reviews of established items, the Top 100 bestsellers list, and the Top-rated 100 items lists are worth looking at for specific items or just niche ideas, for each of the categories and subcategories.
If you are looking for brand-new items to promote and introduce, the Top 100 Movers and Shakers list and the Top 100 Hot New Releases are great places to look for product ideas. All of these lists are ranked by sales, so you find worthy items to recommend to your reader. So if you’re looking for something hot, new with very little keyword competition these are the lists to check out carefully for whatever area you are interested in.
But Amazon.com is slow to navigate
Until recently, one had to navigate Amazon.com and all its menus and pages and find your way into the lists which is a surprisingly slow process when you have multiple windows open, a slow Internet speed and limited RAM on your computer. If any of you have heard of Chris Guthrie, you may know he has been successful selling on Amazon for a number of years. Recently he released the Amasuite set of programs. The three main programs download either data from these top 100 lists, or download a similar list by keyword searching and also there is a software that will download and keyword scraper for Amazon.com for suitable long and short tail keywords for a particular product or niche. All three of these have the unique and time-saving function, but I love the Top 100 one best!
I can’t tell you how much time this has saved me already when looking for specific products to sell. The almost instant results can be sorted by commission, sale price, percent discount (if you want to offer deals), ranking by review stars or if you want to choose a minimum number of ratings for example 10, 25, 50 , 75 or 100 for an established item. All that analysis and filtering can be done at the touch of a button, and the results can be saved in a number of formats. A few months ago I took Chris’s free 10 day How to sell on Amazon course which was just a simple series of videos. I attribute quite a lot of the information in those videos to my success selling Amazon on revenue sharing sites. Amasuite has an even clearer set series of instructional videos that for the $39 itself would’ve been a bargain. I actually only finished watching them today, and realize how valuable they were, because I was so excited about the software, I started using it right away after just watching the instructional video for each program.
Speeding up ASIN number entry
I find one of the slowest parts of choosing products from Amazon.com to put into Seekyt, Wizzley, Squidoo and Topic Spotter is entering the ASIN numbers. When in the Amasuite programs, right-clicking over a highlighted section of the list will paste the series of ASINS wherever you want them. I paste them into notepad and add a quick comma between, and then cut-and-paste them into Seekyt or wherever, and you have fast effortless recommendations. I wouldn’t even mention this program if it hadn’t help me as much as it has. If you want to up your Amazon game and find out more about these programs, you can watch the video from the link at the bottom of the page.
Quick manual ASIN numbers
Without the software, there are faster ways of doing some of these manual steps. Cutting and pasting the ASIN and numbers was especially slow when I used to scroll down the page of a product on Amazon half way down on the left-hand side and cut-and-paste the ASIN number. It didn’t take me long to learn that up in the URL (about two thirds of the way to the right) is that same ASIN number. So if you are certain that you have a ready chosen the right product and do not need to scroll down and read the description or reviews, you can cut-and-paste the ASIN number from the URL at the very top of the page this will save you a five or 10 seconds per item. This may not sound like a lot but it does make a big difference when you’re dying to publish your article and move onto another.
Keywords are the key to your success selling Amazon
Having a solid plan for choosing high searched, low competition keywords is a must when selling Amazon items on the Internet. There will always be a percentage of people that click through to look at your items and a further percentage that will actually buy something. The higher your numbers to start with, the more likely you will begin to get sales every day. It is possible, it does happen. I barely even check AdSense anymore, it’s way more fun checking Amazon.
On-page optimization for click throughs
I am looking forward to fine-tuning and increasing my click through rates, I have a couple of articles at above 60% ctr, one is averaging 70% (after 156 visits and 124 clickouts to date), so I’m going to replicate those and see if it its product specific, or my layout. This is what I like about the online affiliate work, the fine tuning and seeing what works best! Stay tuned.
Chris Guthries Amasuite video tutorials on selling Amazon products effectively gives many specific tips on encouraging a reader to click on the link, and I can tell you that text links convert the best by far and whenever you can, make your product images an affiliate link to that item. If you want to check the program out you can here. The software is specific to Amazon.com which is a huge market.
I hope this helps demystify Amazon sales a little, there is a lot more information available and the more you sell, the more you will see patterns and learn about what works best for your niche.