Is the Amazon Affiliate Program Worth It for Websites in 2023?

The Amazon Affiliate Program
has been one of the most popular programs for the last few decades. So in today's video, we're going to
be digging into answering the question of whether or not it's still worth it
today based off my past experiences of running it on a number of different
niche websites, as well as taking a look at what the commissions are today. By the end of this video, hopefully you'll
get some personal perspective from my experience as well as get to form your
own opinion about whether or not you should use the Amazon Affiliate Program.

Digging right in though, the quick answer
from me is that overall it is worth it to be a part of the Amazon affiliate program. That said, it does depend and
you do want to make sure that you don't rely on it too much. Let's first take a look at what the core
Amazon affiliate rates look like today. So what you can tell on my screen is
that Amazon games are clearly what Amazon is pushing today with 20% fixed income
commissions for each of the referrals of purchases around Amazon games. Amazon is also emphasizing things
around luxury beauty, luxury stores, Amazon explore digital music,
physical books, and things like that. So right at the top of this list,
what you can tell is exactly what Amazon is actually prioritizing
for their core business. But as you work your way further down
the list, you're going to see a list of some of the things that they aren't
really giving as much of commissions for.

So you can see here, they're giving
things for television and digital video games, Amazon fresh, gift cards. All other categories
are just a standard 4%. This is drastically different than
years ago when those different categories actually used to be over 5%. In some cases, they were eight
to 10% for things like outdoor sporting goods and things like that. So from a core category standpoint,
it really comes down to what you are thinking about pushing related to
Amazon related products or services. If, for example, you're running a
website, specifically talking about Amazon games and the new things that
Amazon has developing in terms of their games, then it could be really worth
it for you because you're going to earn 20% of every single sale that you make.

On the flip side of things, though,
if you're covering something like televisions or digital video games, you
might find it a little bit difficult to justify supporting Amazon's affiliate
programs since they're only going to give you 2% of each success of sale. Aside from the core affiliate
program, though, Amazon affiliate also includes a variety of different
bounty categories for key things that they are pushing on their platform. So you can tell here is for example,
when you get people to sign up for their first Amazon video free trial,
you earn a flat $2 and 50 cent bounty. Same thing goes in terms of
a $3 bounty for Amazon baby registry and things like that. This bounty system is very
similar across the board. They cycle through those so in general. When evaluating whether or not
affiliate is actually worth it for you, I wouldn't count on these
respective programs or bounties that are going on because they are subject
to change at any point in time.

Speaking of changing at any point in
time, that's actually one of the biggest drawbacks to Amazon affiliate program. What I'm about to show you in the next
few slides is how a few of my sites have been impacted by the category
changes that Amazon has introduced in their affiliate program commission
rates over the last two or three years. If you go on YouTube though, and just
look at other people's reviews of their experience on Amazon affiliate,
that is one of the consistent pieces of feedback that you will hear. And you just have to understand
that this will always be one of the biggest downsides of being
part of their affiliate program. Because Amazon is such a big website at
this point, they don't need to pay as much for somebody to know about their brand. And so as a result, it's their discretion
as to exactly what percentages they want to pass back to their affiliates. To really show you the impact of what a
commission rate can have on your website, though, the best way to show that is
by digging into one of my websites.

I'll show you the stats for 2020, and
then show you it compared to 2021 just so you can tell how big of a difference
it has been in terms of being in a category where Amazon changed the
affiliate commission rates overnight. So in this particular example in 2020,
this website was making about 5.5K in Amazon affiliate commissions, and yet
when we compare it to the next year, this number has pretty much dropped in half to
about 3.2K at the time of this recording. Digging even further into the data,
what you can see is that in the year 2020, I gave Amazon about a
hundred and nine thousand clicks from this website versus in 2021,
I was giving around 82,000 clicks. Yes, my conversion rate has gone down
from 5.15% to about 4.3%, but that being said, the order of magnitude
difference in the clicks from 2020 to 2021 are not equal to the magnitude of
the change in my affiliate commissions.

In other words, my clicks did not drop
more or less in half like it has here in terms of almost being more or less
cut in half in terms of my commissions. If I were actually doing the math
behind it, making around 3,100 versus 5,400 is close to a half drop in
terms of Amazon affiliate revenue. And what you can tell is that it
doesn't actually reflect in terms of the click difference that I had
on the websites year over year.

Sure again, there was a difference
in conversions, but that cut in overall commission was the bigger
influencer for this particular site. On the flip side of things, though,
what you can see in the second example is that I've got a website here in
which in 2020, it made about $205. And then in the year 2021,
it's made about $666. And the difference here when we start
comparing the commissions is I can see here that we have about 4,200
clicks in 2020 versus in 2021, I've actually had around 28,000 clicks. So clearly what you can tell here is
I sent a lot more clicks on the second site at the same time, though, the thing
that's different about this particular site versus the first example is that
the first site really only launched after Amazon had already made their
affiliate commission changes whereas the first site was already existing
and doing well on Amazon affiliates before the commission change of 2020.

So in this example for this second
case, what you can tell us that when the affiliate commission rates
are more or less stable, it can be pretty reasonable to expect that you
can get a decent amount of affiliate commissions for driving a meaningful
enough amount of traffic over to Amazon. Before we head into some final
takeaways, if you're getting value from today's video, hit that like
button below to help other people find the answer to this question too.

Overall though, here's
what I would tell you. If you're thinking about starting
to use Amazon affiliates, whether it's for your YouTube channel,
your websites or things like that. I say, go ahead and do it. If you can't find another affiliate
program that has a better rate for you, there are a lot of great alternatives out
there such as impact marketing as well as other websites where you can sign up
for different affiliate programs, but essentially you should always expect that
Amazon affiliate is going to be one of the lowest affiliate commissions out there
for all the different programs out there.

There's a good side to that though, which
is in the case where you are just talking about more or less anything you can rely
on there being some sort of product on Amazon that you can direct traffic back
towards in that case where you're looking to monetize your content in some way. Taking a step back though, and thinking
about it in the context of your overall business or side hustle though, I would
not rely on Amazon affiliate commissions for your primary revenue stream. If, for example, you're running that
YouTube channel, you're going to want to actually have different products
or courses and things like that to diversify your income streams and on
the same side with your websites, you're going towant to make sure that you're
not purely an Amazon affiliate website. It's really volatile in those situations. And if you really want to see it for
yourself, you can check out websites like or Empire Flippers to
see exactly just how volatile having a pure Amazon affiliate website can be. If you got value this video, be
sure you hit that like button below, subscribe for more digital marketing,
sales, and entrepreneurship content.

And then check out my video over
here, where I go over whether or not it was worth it to run a niche
website for the last 21 months..

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