6 Steps to Launch An Amazon Affiliate Program Website

6 Steps to Launch An Amazon Affiliate Program Website

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This article has been contributed by Domingo Karsten.

It can be challenging to decide what kind of online business to start.

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You can create a blog, start a niche website, or sell your freelancing services. While all three are creative ways to make money online, the Amazon Associates affiliate model will help you maximize your revenue.

Joining the Amazon affiliate program will allow you to post links to items on Amazon and earn from each transaction.

By adding Amazon affiliate links to your content, you send traffic to Amazon. Each transaction entitles you to a commission based on the type of items purchased by your site visitor. You can then use your Amazon affiliate dashboard to monitor earnings.

Why should you join the Amazon Affiliate program? Unlike an online store, becoming an affiliate marketer will not require you to source products, handle and fulfill orders, or monitor inventory. Amazon will take care of everything, from taking orders to shipping them.

You don’t have to make a large investment to start earning as an Amazon affiliate. You just need to build and launch an affiliate website.

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Here are 6 steps you can follow to build a successful Amazon affiliate website and increase your passive income.

How to Launch An Amazon Affiliate Program Website

1. Choose a Niche

There are millions of products available on Amazon. Creating a niche website will help you concentrate on a specific type of product and attract like-minded individuals who might be interested in the products that Amazon carries.

The first step to creating a site is defining your niche. Checking Amazon categories will allow you to determine the products you can promote to your audience.

Affiliate marketing categories

Image surce: TCK Publishing

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Let’s look at how a niche-centric website uses the Amazon Affiliate program to increase its revenue.

NoTreble.com is a website devoted to bass guitars, bassists, and bass equipment. It caters to a very specific crowd and is considered one of the top bass-oriented websites around.

While it runs stories on musicians and the gear they use, the site also focuses on their music:

Affiliate marketing website notreble.com

Whenever a NoTreble.com visitor clicks on the “Crying For Hope” link, they are taken to this page:

Amazon Music via affiliate link

If the visitor buys the album from Amazon after landing there from NoTreble.com, Amazon gives NoTreble.com a 5% commission. At less than 50 cents per transaction, it might not seem a lot.

Still, small affiliate transactions add up to a tidy sum at the end of the month, especially when you consider that bass guitarists and their fans are a niche market that has a high probability of buying the products that NoTreble.com promotes.

In a nutshell, having a loyal reader and follower base makes a niche site a good opportunity for Amazon monetization. Your site and content pull in people who are likely to buy the products you promote, which determines whether your affiliate marketing strategy succeeds or fails.

2. Find Relevant & Profitable Keywords

The most important thing to consider if you wish to participate in the Amazon Affiliate Program is keyword analysis. Keywords are the cornerstone of search engine optimization (SEO), which aids in ranking your website in search engines.

If you use the wrong keywords, your site might not get any visitors at all. If you don’t get any site visitors, nobody will click on the affiliate links and generate revenue for your site. On the other hand, you can make a lot of money each month if you use the right keywords. These are referred to as “golden keywords.”

So, what separates one keyword from another? When looking for golden keywords, keep the following in mind:

  • The keyword must be well-known enough to attract monthly traffic.
  • The keyword draws traffic that is likely to purchase the commodity.
  • Keywords should always be evergreen – evergreen keywords aren’t tied to a specific date, time, or season.

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To find the golden keywords for your niche, type your specific product or keyword into the Amazon search bar to see what auto-fill suggestions come up with.

Amazon affiliate keyword search

Next, look at the categories in your niche to see which items are the most common. After that, ask yourself a few questions, such as:

  • What keywords are being used in the product names by the sellers?
  • What kinds of keywords are used in the product descriptions and as links?

Amazon can help you figure out what things to sell. It can also help you find words and phrases that succeed in converting site visitors to customers.

Apart from using Amazon for keyword research, you can also take help from tools like Long Tail Pro, a keyword analysis tool that will help you figure out your niche’s competitiveness.

Keyword analysis for affiliate marketing

Image source: Niche Pursuits

If many other affiliate sites are already ranking for the keywords you want to rank for, outperforming your competitors won’t be simple. By looking at longtail keywords and narrowing your pages’ reach, you can still find a new spin on your chosen niche.

Longtail keywords are search phrases longer than two words. They are more specific than typical one or two-word keywords and result in higher conversion rates:

Affiliate marketing long-tail keyword analysis

Image source: Niche Pursuits

Let’s say you want your site to promote exercise equipment. It’s difficult to compete with more established sites in the same niche, especially if you want to rank for the keyword “shower mat”. However, based on the screenshot above, building a page with content about the “best anti-slip shower mat” will help your site become more competitive.

3. Identify Suitable Products

Finding the best items at the right price is the secret to making money as an Amazon affiliate.

Since the commission rate is calculated by the number of items sold per month, promoting low-cost goods will help raise the commission rate. However, unless these products are also under a volume-based commission scheme, your affiliate earnings from these products alone may be very low.

On the other hand, if the goods are expensive, it could be challenging to get customers to buy them. This reduces your chances of actually earning an income.

The curious thing is that the words “cheap” and “expensive” are just relative to one’s understanding. One person’s “fancy” sneakers, for example, could be someone else’s “everyday” shoes.

Just because something seems costly to you does not mean it would be expensive to anyone else. As an affiliate marketer, you need to find the right products for your target market.

Luckily, Amazon has a variety of resources to assist you in finding these products. To begin, locate the Amazon category that best corresponds to your website’s niche.

For example, if you’re making a website about coffee makers, follow the navigation path below:

Amazon product search

From there, you should be able to find products that match the price point that your audience can afford, from Black & Decker coffee makers below $25 to Jura espresso machines at close to $1000.

Once you’ve found the right products for your price point, you can filter the search results according to brand, features, color, material, and cup capacity.

Amazon product range - coffee machines

You will also want to promote the products that people like.

Your coffee maker might be the cheapest of its kind, but a one-star customer rating implies that it doesn’t work properly, if at all. On the other hand, people pay a premium for Jura machines: they work well, and you’re guaranteed a nice, hot cup of espresso each time you use it.

Looking at your products’ star rating will let you know if the product is worth promoting as an affiliate.

4. Create Compelling Content That Adds Value

Although you can advertise Amazon goods on social media or YouTube, most people — including those who make five figures through affiliate links — do so by blogging.

Although writing single product reviews for various Amazon products is a common choice, there are other ways to create more engaging review-oriented material.

Writing roundups of a few related items is a good approach as it allows you to post multiple affiliate links in a single piece of content. Running an article about “The 5 Best Portable Mixers” or “The Best Fitness Tracker You Can Purchase on Amazon” are both good ideas if you want your readers to click on your affiliate links.

For instance, in the picture below from Wirecutter, the writer reviewed the best chef’s knives, made their pick, and added an Amazon affiliate link to it:

Amazon affiliate link in blog content

Image source: Ahrefs

Aside from comparing products, you could also create explainer posts, such as “How to Use Your Dyson Hair Dryer” or “5 Ways to Use Your Philips Air Fryer.”

The Wirecutter screenshot below is from an article titled “How to Back Up Your Computer,” which explains how to back up your computer and recommends products for the task.

Affiliate marketing content example

Image source: Business2Community

While generating original content will give your affiliate links exposure, you need to check Amazon reviews to develop a better idea of customer sentiment about the products you’re promoting. This is especially important if you’ve never actually tried any of those products for any reason.

5. Use SEO to Drive Traffic to Your Site

To get traffic to your site, you need to make it appear on search results. However, most people don’t go beyond the first page of the Google search results. How do you ensure that your page gets there and stays there?

Using SEO will drive traffic to your site and increase the chances of getting revenue through Amazon affiliate click-throughs. The tips below will help you use SEO to drive traffic to your Amazon affiliate website.

Post Exclusive, High-Quality Content

If I had to give you only one SEO tip, it would be to build high-quality content. You can stuff your content with keywords, but if your readers don’t see any value in it, it will stay down in the search rankings.

Google rewards helpful original content by giving it a high position in the search results, and users tend to come back to websites that offer good answers to relevant questions.

Conduct Keyword Research

One of the most critical aspects of any SEO campaign is keyword analysis. If your business has a decent SEO budget, it would be wise to invest in premium tools such as Ahrefs, SEMRush, Long Tail Pro or any other Ahrefs alternative for keyword research.

You can use freemium tools such as Google Keyword Planner and Keywords Everywhere for basic keyword research.

Keyword research tool screenshots

Image source: MonetizePros

Maintain a Spam-Free Website

If you’ve previously thought you could only find spam in your email, you’re mistaken. There is such a thing as SEO spam, and it consists of website content that contains links to harmful or suspicious websites.

You can find much of this spam in the comment section of your blog, where “black hat” SEO cybercriminals post spammy backlinks to make your site look useless and suspicious. It can also come from plugins or extensions from untrusted sources.

Using an anti-spam plugin for WordPress or another CMS will protect your site from these cyberattacks. Keeping your site free from spam will help Google index it properly and can result in more traffic.

Include Keywords in the Title & Meta Description

You should use your target keywords in your meta description and meta title. The SEO title, which appears in search results as a blog headline, must contain your targeted keyword.

Users will always know what they’re searching for in the post, and adding keywords to the page title and meta description will help Google match your page with user searches. If you’re unsure what the meta description is, it’s found in the HTML code, just below the page title. It’s around 150 words long and describes the content of the page.

Reduce the Time it Takes for the Site to Load

Did you know that site speed is crucial in attracting more traffic to your site? Studies show that the longer your page takes to load, the more likely people will leave it. A five-second load time, for example, results in a 38% bounce rate.

You can do different things to lower the page load time. For example, you can resize the images on your page. You can also take a look at your site’s HTML code and remove unused or redundant code. Using an adaptive website design will make it load faster on mobile devices as well.

Backlinks from authoritative websites are useful for directing traffic to your site. They can also help increase your own site’s domain authority, which is one of the factors Google considers as it ranks the search results for your keyword.

How do you get those backlinks? The safest way is to publish guest posts on high-authority sites in your niche and use those posts to build links back to your site. Many website content managers will be happy to publish your content as long as it’s high-quality, relevant, and original.

Internal linking is a simple technique that easily allows Google to find and index content on your site. When Google can find your affiliate marketing content through internal links on your site, it will tend to rank higher in the search results.

While SEO has something to do with keywords, it is more than that. SEO is all about helping both humans and Google access relevant content on your site. Your Amazon affiliate website will benefit from a good SEO standing because of the higher traffic.

What is PPC marketing? PPC stands for “pay-per-click.” Advertisers pay Google, or another marketing channel, for every click users make through to their sites. Alternatively, they might charge per 1,000 impressions.

If you’re not an expert in SEO, you can utilize PPC to generate leads. A successful PPC campaign relies on precise targeting.  You need to monitor your campaign to ensure that it generates the qualified traffic that you need.

In Closing

Creating a website might be the easiest part of launching an Amazon affiliate site. Keeping it optimized is another story.

Choosing a niche will help you create a strategy to attract people to your site. A narrow, specialized niche means that your readers will be more interested in the products you’re promoting. Identifying the products you’ll promote properly will also be in your audience’s budget.

To further drive traffic to your site (and affiliate links), you need to create compelling content. Performing SEO on that content will help get your site into the first page of the Google search results, while using PPC will help potential customers find your site no matter your search ranking.

An Amazon Affiliate website is a good example of passive income. You publish content, add the affiliate links to that content, and watch as the revenue starts trickling in. However, to keep the  revenue stream open, you always have to keep testing and evaluating your campaign’s effectiveness, especially because people tend to change their minds too often.


About the author: Domingo Karsten has over 10 years experience in online marketing. He is involved with We Can Track. His writing has been featured in FastCompany and others, follow him on Twitter at @domingokarsten.

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