Passive Income with Amazon Associates

34
440

As a consumer, I love Amazon.com for buying books and other purchases. As an online marketer, I love using their affiliate program – called Amazon Associates – for earning passive income through commissions when others purchase products. Amazon has been a trusted online retailer just about since the dawn of the internet. They went online in the mid 90’s, mostly selling books. They’ve now become a world-leading and innovative drop-shipping site – meaning Amazon doesn’t have a massive warehouse that stores all of these products. Rather, they allow buyers to browse and buy directly from their site and then products are shipped from manufacturers or other retailers.

If people were leery to allow companies to store their credit card information during the early days of the internet, that certainly isn’t the case anymore. I heard a statistic (although I can’t find proof) that Amazon has over 300 million credit card numbers on file! That number nearly accounts for every single man, woman and child in the United States. More than 300 million people trust Amazon, have made purchases in the past and will likely be making purchases in the future.

Amazon Associates Affiliate Program

It’s hard to ignore a number like 300 million. If that many people, or more, will be spending money online via Amazon – you’re darn right I want a piece of that action! It’s pretty simple to sign up for the Amazon Associates program. You do need to have a website in place and they do need to approve it first. But after that, you’re free to place links on any of your sites. Everything within the back end of the Amazon Associates site is pretty self explanatory and easy to use. They have all kinds of tools and widgets available to help you generate sales.

Commission rates vary. For me, they started off at 4% and will increase to 6% as soon as I refer a certain number of items. As of the writing of this post, I need to get 5 more items out there to increase my rate to 6%. This will be easily accomplished very soon, as I like to incorporate Amazon products in addition to Google Adsense on most of my niche sites.

My favorite part about the Amazon Associates affiliate program is that you earn commissions not only for the items you refer, but also for everything else that buyer purchases as long as they got to Amazon through one of your links! For example, say Donald Trump or Robert Kiyosaki stumbled upon one of my sites because I was praising and promoting one of their books (Why We Want You to be Rich). One of them clicks on the link, just out of curiosity or maybe because they wanted to see their face on the front of the book. They get to Amazon and then remember, oh yeah, I was going to buy that Rolex watch for my kids birthday! They are already on Amazon through your affiliate link to their book. There is a search bar at the top of the page, so they type in Rolex watch. They come across this fabulous Never Worn Rolex Submariner Men’s Watch and purchase it for the low price of $31,995.00! (price good at time of this post – subject to change over time) At a 6% commission rate, I would receive $1919.70! Awesome. Hey, nobody can accuse me of not having high ambitions.

The other thing I like about Amazon Associates, as opposed to Google Adsense, is that you know you are getting paid as a result of a conversion. With Adsense, you are paid just for somebody clicking on an ad. You have no idea whether that person ended up buying a product as a result. Sure, conversions are lower with Amazon compared to Adsense clicks – but it is cool to know that you are earning as a result of somebody else actually buying.

How I Shop for Every Product Imaginable and Books on Amazon

Shopping for just about any product imaginable is super easy on Amazon. I mostly buy products on Amazon that are otherwise hard to find at local stores. Or if I’m just too lazy or don’t have time to go out and shop around, shopping on the computer is very convenient. I’ve had my credit card number and shipping information stored at Amazon for several years now and have never had a problem. Now when I want to purchase something it’s as easy as 1-click!

I’ve learned a ton over the years by reading books. Amazon.com is the best place to shop for and purchase books. Lately, I love buying Kindle books if they are available. The search box below shows a sample of what comes up on Amazon for the search term “passive income.” Go ahead and type something else in the search box if you’re curious.

Whenever I shop on Amazon, I make sure I do so through one of somebody else’s affiliate links. It doesn’t cost me a dime more and one of my blogger friends earns a small commission for my purchase. When somebody makes a purchase from Amazon after getting there through one of my affiliate links or through a search widget (like the one below), then I earn a small commission. This is a great way to create passive income, by getting as many links and widgets out there on the internet as possible. These web pages could be out there for a very long time and you just never know when somebody is going to click on one of your links and make a purchase.

Amazon is perfectly content paying out these small commissions. They write it off as advertising costs. If you or I or anybody else buys from Amazon directly, without getting there through an affiliate link, then Amazon pockets ALL of the profit. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but why not help out a small internet marketer? Amazon is getting theirs – we might as well get a little too.

I’ve recently started to earn some small commissions via the Amazon Associates affiliate program. I’m looking forward to constantly growing these amounts and reporting them in my monthly income reports.

Until then, remember that there are several dumb ways to create passive income online, but only one site that is blogging about it! Dumb Passive Income… dot com.

Update: Since writing this post way back in 2012 – Amazon Affiliate niche websites have become all the rage! Lots and lots of people create sites specifically JUST to promote Amazon products. And lots of people make a full-time living from doing so. One guy I know, Shashank, earns a healthy chunk of change from Amazon every month and he has a really good step-by-step post on his blog that explains everything. Check out his post about making lots of money from Amazon.

Good Day!

-Matt

  • Nothing DUMB about this! I love Amazon Associates. It hasn’t always paid out the highest, and the cookie life is pretty short. But I do see the strong potential if you can pepper the links into your blog posts and keep traffic coming to them. I’ve noticed lots of niche sites built around “reviews” of products which are nothing more than just Amazon Associates referrals.

    I like how you try to help out your blogging bros by using one of their links. That’s a pretty cool move.

    I’m looking forward to seeing how well this program works out for me around the Christmas season.

    • You’re right MMD – I forgot to put something DUMB in this post. But hey, the more I learn… I guess I can’t keep posting dumb stuff forever.

      I hear ya on Christmas season coming up. I just got a little over-excited last week about a keyword that has good potential around the Christmas season – so I bought another domain and am hoping to get that site up and ranked before Christmas. I plan to monetize it solely with Amazon. Hopefully you have luck as well with the upcoming holiday shopping season.

  • Hi

    Amazon is a pretty good program. Especially with Christmas on the way, I;d expect black Monday to be even bigger this year at amazon.

    My best “related purchase” was when somebody bought a $2 item on amazon through a tropical fish site i have. At the same time they spent $15,000 on camera gear and i got 8% (1,200)! more than sweet when those things happen 🙂

    • That’s awesome Steve! It’s conversion stories like this one that keep my hopes up and dreams alive. Honestly, even the small sales excite me because it’s a step towards something. I would be jumping off the walls if I got a “related purchase,” similar to yours!

  • Bryan Wassel

    Another good post Matt! I have a comparison post on my site between amazon and adsense, and hope to have the second part up by next week. Amazon can be a great way to make money, but you have to be in a “buyers market”

    • I didn’t realize you had a blog Bryan – thanks for pointing that out. I’ve added it to my RSS reader. I know exactly what you mean about the “buyers market,” and have some great ideas for future sites going along with this line of thinking. I actually think, if done right, Amazon sites can be more profitable than Adsense sites – completely depending on the market (like you said) though.

  • Pingback: Passive Income with Amazon Associates | | Passive Income Stream()

  • Pingback: Income Report - September 2012 |()

  • AverageJoe

    I’m curious how you grow your Amazon business. We used it early on but dumped it when it seemed nobody clicked any of our Amazon links. Now we only use it when we’re discussing a book or product that they sell directly (use it in a post). We’ve made a few bucks but nothing spectacular.

    • Actually Joe, I haven’t really had any luck myself selling products. One of my future sites will be built solely around Amazon products and monetized that way only.

      As far as the commissions I am receiving to date – they are completely the result of this blog. One guy keeps making his “normal” Amazon purchases by clicking thru via one of my links. I do the same for him in return. This is actually how THIS post was born. I started to create a “Resources,” page for this blog, where I was going to include an Amazon link so people could find one easier. My simple explanation of Amazon got too long, so I turned it into this entire post and haven’t worked on the “resources,” page since.

      So remember, whenever you buy from Amazon, do so thru somebody’s affiliate link. Otherwise that commission money is left on the table and Amazon pockets it all! You could put a link on your site and explain and urge others to do the same. People are buying stuff from Amazon anyway – it might as well benefit small-time blogs like ours (well, mine anyway – you’re big-time now Joe!)

  • Pingback: Carbonite Referral - $20 Amazon Gift Card for You AND Your Friend()

  • Pingback: Passive Income Report - January 2013()

  • Pingback: Passive Income Report - March 2013()

  • Pingback: Passive Income Report for April, May & June 2013()

  • Youri Kemp

    Do my Amazon referrals get discounts outside of the already established price? This is the only benefit I see for running Amazon affiliates….

    • Youri – no, your referrals do not get an extra discount. The benefit (and pretty much the sole reason people use the Amazon Associates program) is that you receive commissions for purchases they make. That is the whole point of the program – for referrers to be able to make money!

  • Pingback: Passive Income Report for July and August 2013()

  • Pingback: Passive Income Report for October 2013()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for December 2013()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for March 2014 - Dumb Passive Income()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for August 2014 - Dumb Passive Income()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for December 2014()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for January 2015()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for February 2015()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for March 2015()

  • Pingback: Passive Income Report for April 2015()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for May 2015 - Dumb Passive Income()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for July 2015()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for July 2015 | Le Giang XYZ()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for June 2015 | Le Giang XYZ()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for May 2015 | Le Giang XYZ()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for September 2015()

  • Pingback: [Dumb] Passive Income Report for October 2015()

  • MushroomApe

    love you, when your offical book/guide or product come out ,it’s real honest people like you who win in the long run, Value = success