Blog about Amazon Affiliate Business
In our blog we share news about Xenia Sites project, about our products and services. Here we also give
affiliate marketing tips to make your business even more successful. Stay tuned to know what’s up!
Today there are different WordPress Amazon affiliate plugins available in the market. When I only started working with Amazon affiliate program I was not able to find the plugin that could meet all my demands. My dream WordPress plugin for use as an Amazon Associate would allow me to search for products from right within my WordPress dashboard.
I wanted to be able to upload thousands of products fast from Amazon, get regular automatic updates and quickly grab and insert affiliate link without too many clicks, logins, or copy and paste procedures. Of course, using such an Amazon plugin for international markets would be a nice bonus, too.
Xenia Plugin – Amazon Affiliate Plugin for WordPress
After getting enough experience in Amazon affiliate business and profound programming skills I decided to create my own Amazon affiliate plugin for WordPress. As a result we created the Xenia plugin and after successful testing I started building my Amazon stores using my own affiliate plugin.
The Xenia Plugin allows you to add thousands of Amazon products to WordPress store quickly and easily. The Plugin will put your Amazon Associate Program ID in all links back to Amazon,Â so you get commission for all sales referred to Amazon.
Owing to the fact the Xenia plugin can generate thousands of products, you get a lot of pages on your site which get ranked on search engines with the help of so called long tail keywords.
This technique looks like this:
More Products = More Pages on Google = More Long Tail Keywords = More Traffic = More Commissions
Xenia Plugin Benefits
Here are the main benefits you get with Xenia Plugin:
- Save time by posting HUGE amount of products all at once. This way, you can have thousands of products automatically added to your site in just a few clicks.
- Easily find desired products on Amazon to add to your website. Specify a category, keywords, filtering options or search by nodes.
- Xenia Plugin uses auto updating system for pricing and product info keeping your product data fresh with the latest data from Amazon.
- The Plugin works with international versions of the Amazon Associate Program (United States, Canada, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy and Spain).
If you have installed the free Amazon Product Reviews Plugin Amz Free and want to know how to use the plugin then this page will show you how. If the install has been successful you should have two new main admin menu items, Reviews and Amz Free see below.
The idea here is to goto either Reviews or WooCommerce menu item from the Amz Free Plugins main admin menu see 2nd image below, once there you will be able to add a Amazon Product to either Reviews main menu or WooCommerce Product main menu.
The Reviews is where you manually add and edit reviews, its is similar to wordpress Posts menu, but with additional items specific to Amazon Products and Reviews see picture below.
The Amz Free menu has two items if WooCommerce is not installed and three items when WooCommerce is installed, and this is where you will add Amazon Products bu using either “Amz Free->Reviews” or Amz Free->WooCommerce” sections, see picture below.
The first item “Amz Free->Information” is an Information page that also has a few setting that you can set, first there is a choice of two items to choose between “Auto Insert” and “Shortcode”. If “Auto Insert” is selected then the plugin will auto insert the shortcodes into the Reviews and WooCommerce Products see below.
See section 2 above where you have two choices, first “Auto Insert” selection will insert the shortcodes in the following order:
- [amz-main-infobox] – This displays title & some product info as well as buy now box & a link to [amz-expert]
- [amz-specs] – This is for various specifications ie: (HD, yes), (screen size, 720p) etc.
- [amz-expert] – This provides a link anchor to Expert Review for [amz-main-infobox], place this just above the review but after shortcodes here.
Next comes the actual Review or WooCommerce Product discription body, next the “Auto Insert” selection will continue to insert the remaining shortcodes in the following order:
- [amz-reviews-questions] – This provides ‘Customer Reviews & Opinions’ and ‘Your Questions Answered’ sections.
- [amz-proscons] – This provides the products pros & cons
- [amz-bottom-buybox] – This provides a buy now box with a small picture & title along with buy button.
Next is the “Shortcode” selection will allow you to insert the shortcodes in any order you want.
After the “Auto Insert” and “Shortcode” options you have “AWSAccessKeyId” and “AWSSecretKey“, both need to be filled in with your Amazon Associates “AWSAccessKeyId” and “AWSSecretKey“. If you do not fill both of these fields then this plugin will not work see section 3 in the image above.
There is also two other menu items “Amz Free->Reviews” when selected will allow you to add Amazon Products to the Reviews admin menu item section mentioned above, see the image below.
There are three sections on the page “Amazon’s Product ASIN” this is where you would put the ASIN 10 Character/Number from the product you want on Amazons website.
Next is “Your Amazon Affilliate ID” this is your id/tag from amazon associates and is something like “yourtagname-20” for USA or “yourtagname-21” for UK, both the above fields can be seen in the image above.
This pre populates most of the fields in the Reviews main menu mentioned above, dont forget you should re-write the discription to make it unique.
If WooCommerce is installed there will be another menu item “Amz Free->WooCommerce” that allows you to add Amazon Products to WooCommerce’s Products, this page has the same sections as the “Amz Free->Reviews” page mentioned above see the image below.
This pre populates most of the fields in the WooCommerce Products main menu & again you should re-write the discription to make it unique.
The Pro version has two extra menu items “Amz Free->Comparason Tables” and “Amz Free->Update Prices”, which are not included in the free version.
Error messages you might recieve
Most of the error messages will be from Amazon AWS, see one such error below:
Here the error is because of missing AWSAccessKeyId, there is also the same sort of error for AWSSecretKey as well as invalid AWSAccessKeyId or AWSSecretKey. If you get any of the above errors then double/tripple check that you have entered both keys exactly the same as Amazon provided and if you copy & paste them that there are no returns or any other characters that cannot be seen as these can also produce errors.
All the errors mentioned above can occur using both “Amz Free->Reviews” and “Amz Free->WooCommerce” admin menu items.
Once upon a time the life of an affiliate marketer was fine and dandy. They just scrapped some content details from Amazon/Walmart/Ebay/The Manufacturer, then inserted an affiliate link. The search engines then ranked this content, traffic ensued and sales started coming in. What a beautiful, wonderful world it was.
Fast forward to 2015 and that doesnt work. Not only does this type of site not work so well, and you will find it very hard to get a few free visitors, but this strategy can now even kill your site dead.Unless you know what to do first.
The Problem with most affiliate websites today
Search engines and even paid services such as adwords want websites to add value to the web, not just re-produce and regurgitate existing content and product details. And if you don’t do this you will find that both the free and paid options will make your life harder than ever. A website with just content taken straight from Amazon adds no value to users browsing the web. All it really adds is duplicate content. And this is why in today’s world, ranking eccommerce affiliate websites is getting more and more difficult. It is no longer easy to fool Google. Not only that, if you apply to become an Amazon affiliate using a thin content site that is just comprised of scrapped content then you will probably get turned down for an account.
How To Add Value To Your Website
So the one thing that you must do to your new shiny website is to add something new that exists nowhere on the web – Information, and it has to be new and unique. Or it has to be presented in a better way than it is available elsewhere.
So value in a nutshell means more content, text, pictures and video will do – just make sure it is new, unique and adds value to a web browsers online experience. Of course it’s easy to say it but how do you put this into practise on a website that may have many pages?
Condense & Summarize Existing Reviews
You can write reviews, but make them better than what’s already out there. Most items already have many reviews posted on the web, so read them and summarize what they say in your own words. Just make sure that your review offers something people want. For example read through the Amazon review and condense all the information into more bite-sized pieces. Everyone is in a rush and has a lower attention span, so make your review perfect for someone that wants to spend as little time as possible reading it. Try to put a review on every major product that you are promoting. So if you have an Amazon plugin that drags content into your website, make sure you rewrite it, add to it or change it in some way so that it is better.
Answer Questions That Buyers Are Asking
A great feature on Amazon product pages is that it has customer questions. Other places around the web also have questions that potential customers are asking about certain items. So collect those questions and the most asked you can add to your website along with the most comprehensive answers you can give.
If you can find questions that have not been answered then make it your mission to find and report them. If you think about it anyone looking to buy a product, especially an expensive item will have a number of questions that need addressing before that hit that buy button!
Add Comparison Tables
Something that would-be buyers really love is a side-by-side comparison table of products so that can decide which is best. These can manually be put together in html for websites or if your’e running a wordpress blog you can use a free plugin called
By doing these things you will find that not only do people value your website and spend more time on it, but that you will rank for a ton of long tail keywords as well.
Once you understand how Amazon can make you money without the hassle of holding any stock yourself, you will find that your next biggest headache is figuring out what to sell. On the one hand you do not want to just try and sell the usual laptops or mobile phones as those markets are pretty much saturated. Rather you want to find smaller niche groups of products, maybe something that is just taking off, or part of a sub-niche of larger products. For example rather than cameras in general, how about car dash-cams or go-pro wearable cameras?
Many product niches can be discovered by accident. My daughter came home from school one day raving about a new toy that all the kids were playing with. I looked into the product, found that not many places were selling it, and set-up a small website to sell it that day. That website made me thousands upon thousands of dollars. So you can look around and keep your ears and eyes open to find products, or you can use the Amazon website itself to find hot selling products that you can use (more on niche selection here).
So here is how you can filter down the products on Amazon and the checks you can do to see if it’s a market you should target:-
How to find products
If you want to get up and running with an Amazon Affiliate website but don’t have the budget to get one created, or cannot pay for the various plugins required, then there is another option available to you in free Amazon WordPress plugins.
A must-do step of creating affiliate sites is creating the product pages, and inputting all of the product details. To make this task easier there are a number of WordPress plugins to do the job for you. Although some of the high-end and more complex plugins are paid for offerings, some are available totally free. Here we will take a look at the best free plugins available, and tell you which ones are best. Although this is currently just a quick rundown, look out for much more in-depth reviews of each one soon.
It is with great excitement that we can announce that Xenia Sites has now changed ownership. The previous owner decided to move onto other things and we wish them great luck. Now that the website has changed hands, the important thing most people will want to know is – what will that mean for any new and existing customers, and what are the product plans?
We will obviously keep creating and supplying affiliate website stores using the Xenia plugin that create websites with thousands of indexed pages and visitors for long tail search queries. But we will also be working on a new strategy bringing more diversity in our offerings.
Whats the New Strategy
We will be evolving with our services, still offering websites populated with thousands of products from Amazon, but we will also add more content rich, review driven, and smaller Amazon websites that we believe will work even better for both search engine traffic and long term growth.
Individual Websites with unique content
Our new range of websites will still be packed with Amazon goods in the niche you want, but we will be more selective with numbers. We will put together a website that mixes best selling Amazon products with reviews, comparison charts, and helpful product related articles such as how-to and the best 5 [products] etc.
How about Existing Customers?
We appreciate and are thankful for all existing users of Xenia sites and will not abandon any previous buyers of products or services. All existing customers will be well looked after with any technical help, advice or services that are needed for your online business.
What should we do with our existing websites?
For many owners of Amazon Affiliate stores that are earning a good commission, you need do nothing more. If you own an Amazon store and need more organic traffic, then the most important aspect to ranking a website is to have something unique for web searchers. So thousands of product descriptions from Amazon and zero unique content will do little for your ranking chances. We suggest you add some unique blog posts and maybe some product reviews and comparisons. A guide to doing just this will be coming soon.
It promises to be an exciting time ahead and we will keep you informed all the way. Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns and we look forward to doing business with you in the future.
Amazon affiliate stores are available ready made and ready to buy, but maybe you would rather create them yourself. But it can be confusing with a huge range of website types, styles, plugins and themes available, as well as conflicting advice from ‘so called experts’ as to how to setup your website and what works. So which option should you choose, and how do you make sure your affiliate website brings in plenty of visitors, along with the highest commissions? Read on and you will find out.
Amazon affiliate stores can be created by yourself if you have the know-how, using standard HTML design or a CMS such as wordpress (or you can buy one ready made). Once your website is completed with amazon links within the content, you hope that visitors will come and start clicking on your Amazon affiliate links.
You own the websites and have full control over them, and they can make you lots of money – if they are set-up correctly. When a customer visits your website store and then checks out an item, or hits the buy it button, a small cookie is placed on their computer telling Amazon that you sent that particular customer. Any purchase that visitor makes from Amazon will result in a commission paid to you.
These website stores can be very easy and quick to create and set-up, but these usually end with little or minor success. Alternatively they can be more difficult and time consuming to create, and involve more work, but these sites will bring much better results and stand the test of time. The decision to go the easy route, or put in some work will ultimately be the difference between long-term success or short-term failure.
Reasons To Become an Amazon Affiliate
But why become an Amazon affiliate? There are many other ways to monetize a website, so what makes Amazon the best choice? Well here are some of the reasons why you really want to become an Amazon Affiliate:-
Trusted – Amazon is probably the most trusted shopping brand worldwide. Everone has heard about and brought products from Amazon, this loyalty and trust converts online browsers to commited buyers.
Unlimited commission – When you have an Amazon website/store set-up then commission is paid to you on every item purchased by visitors to your site. Amazon pay from 4-8.5% on items which can be quite a lot for high ticket items or big sellers.
Multiple purchases – People usually buy more than a single item when you send them to Amazon, and you earn a commission on whatever they buy. And this applies whether they end up buying what you sent them to or not. Many people load up their cart with numerous items so commissions can add up.
Easy integration â€“ Amazon provides some good tools and widgets to help you integrate the sales channel into your website.
Vast product/niche selection – The Amazon marketplace has an amazing number of products suitable for any taste or niche. You can choose from gardening, electronics, virtual reality devices, diet products, hair care etc. etc. There is such a huge number that any interest is catered for and you WILL find something relevant to your target audience.
Building your Amazon Store
The easy method is by simply using the amazon associate astore builder, this is a short snippet of code you paste onto your website pages and will result in Amazon products showing. But this technique is not going to bring you a lot of success unless you already have a massive trraffic base to send to it as it will never rank organically. The reason is that an astore is simply an iframe that links to Amazon meaning that none of the content is actually hosted by you. And that means that none of the search engines will rank you for any keywords and no free (organic) traffic will ever reach your website/store.
Create your own website
If you want more control of your store then you can buy a domain name, install wordpress, decide on a niche, choose and customize a theme, and use any of the free plugins or paid plugins that are available to populate your website with products. Look out for our complete step-by-step guide to creating an Amazon affiliate website.
Ready made Amazon websites – Let Us Do It For You
If you want a website quickly and without all the fuss and headaches then we can supply them ready made to your requirements. Although our Amazon affiliate sites will require some input from you after the initial setting up stage, they are probably the most passive way to make an online income for years to come.
Our stores are custom created using our own amazon affiliate script wordpress plugin which creates hundreds or thousands of pages and products, all indexed in search engines and bringing visitors to your website on autopilot.
Take a look at our amazon affiliate wordpress themes and website stores and judge for yourself the quality and build of our associates script compared to others. Every website we create has quality custom themes, graphics and all the pages you need such as privacy page, contact us,
A recent study by MarketingSherpa has detected that top organic positions are clicked twice more often than top paid-advertising positions: 20 and 10 per cent respectively. And if a site has both top organic and a top paid-advertising positions, the links common click through rate comes to an impressive 60 per cent!
SEO is a separate question when it comes to ready made or pre-populated affiliate stores. When people buy these ready made sites, usually most of their content is duplicated from the merchantâ€™s store (Amazon, for example). Product descriptions, technical details, customer reviews and all other merchant texts are copied either from the merchant or from other resources. And although this is normal taking into consideration the low prices for ready affiliate stores it is not ideal for SEO. But the simple fact is that nobody will write unique quality articles for a site that costs $100. And duplicated content is generally not so good (and sometimes even very bad) for your webstore ranking. So what do you do to get your affiliate site ranking?
Why should every affiliate store owner promote his business in social networks, blogs and forums?
1. Itâ€™s a must-have. Websites without social icons or widgets look strange nowadays. Even if you are not going to put much effort in SMM (social media marketing), you still should open accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, etc. â€“ theÂ selection depends on your niche, target audience, purposes and so on. Opening accounts in social networksÂ donâ€™t forget to provide good avatars and covers relevant to your webstore style. Or, ideally, picturesÂ should be created by a designer: with your logo and certainÂ colors (similar to the store design). And certainly donâ€™t forget to provide links to your website in every account.
Letâ€™s suppose you have a quality webstore with a great design, user-friendly interface and up-to-date catalogue. And letâ€™s not analyze other variants, since the reasons of not getting profit from poor sites with outdated catalogues are obvious.
So, your webstore is great, youâ€™ve made your affiliate settings and are waiting for the money. You are waiting for a week, then another one and further â€“ but nothing happens or there appear seldom twopenny-halfpenny sales. Letâ€™s try to understand whatâ€™s going on.
Letâ€™s say you have a site for the Amazon Associates program, and someone visits your site and clicks an affiliate link. A cookie will be dropped on their computer to keep track of whether they make a purchase or not through your affiliate link. If a sale is made through this link of yours, then Amazon will award you with a commission.
Itâ€™s easy to make mistakes when you are a newbie. Starting an affiliate business you are likely to be overloaded with information. So keep these simple things in mind not to lose your focus. What are typical mistakes of the newcomers?
1.Â Trying to diversify too early
Itâ€™s great if you are not keeping all eggs in one basket, and having several affiliate webstores in different niches should be your final goal. But at the very beginning you should focus on one and only project. Many beginners try to follow all popular and promising trends theyâ€™ve heard of (for example weight loss, dating, fashion, etc.), open several stores at a time and fail to make any of them successful. Each project demands much time and work and when you get scattered and spread your efforts in a thin layer, all stores you run are short of attention. What we recommend is beginning with one project, getting it into shape (it may take a month or more) and afterwards taking up the next one.
In such a competitive sphere as affiliate marketing simply having a webstore with catalog and affiliate links is definitely not enough for success on the whole and for visibility in search engines in particular. You need good unique content to keep readers come back and to be highly ranked in search engines. Thatâ€™s why we recommend filling your website with quality content and updating it on regular basis. It will tell your readers that youâ€™re not just a moneymaker, but also an expert in the field. And the best place of publishing such content is your blog.
Since you attract visitors to your site and then they are redirected to the merchantâ€™s store, you need helpful information relevant to the merchantâ€™s niche. If you cannot write well, or have no time for content creating, hire a professional copywriter to run your blog on freelance basis.
If you are only getting ready for buying or creating an affiliate store and havenâ€™t chosen your niche yet, think twice of what really interests you. The problem with inappropriate niches is that if you donâ€™t really understand and enjoy the topic, very soon youâ€™ll get bored â€“ and it will reflect on the quality of your content. Select a niche you are closely familiar with, the one that really excites you, and that will give you inspiration for continuous content.
Now that youâ€™ve chosen your niche, itâ€™s time to start running the blog.
Online business is not only code, techniques and accountancy. Up to 90 per cent of your success depends on behavioral factor. That means you should be a part-time psychologist to get profit.
Focus on trust
Affiliate marketing is all about reputation and relationship. In fact, every visitor entering your webstore for the first time and seeing â€œBuy Now at Amazom.comâ€ button can simply leave without clicking and go straight to Amazon, because he knows Amazon and does not know you. Such things matter when it comes to giving oneâ€™s money to somebody. Thatâ€™s why you need to be (and look) reliable. You cannot give guarantees and promise refunds in case a customer is unhappy with his purchase, since the products and services you are promoting are not yours. What you can do is arrange quality design and decent content to make a good first impression. And donâ€™t forget Contact and About pages.
Well, affiliate marketing is one of the best and dynamically developing ways of earning money online. Letâ€™s enumerate why:
- Itâ€™s affordable. You donâ€™t need much money for the start of your business. $100 may be enough to launch a webstore; and participation in affiliate programs is free. After your website is ready you pay only for its promotion â€“ as much as you can or want. You may use only cost-free internet marketing channels or even do nothing. Â Production cost of the goods you promote is not your problem â€“ itâ€™s under responsibility of the seller. You donâ€™t have to rent office and hire employees. All you need is a computer and internet connection.
- With online marketing the whole world is open to you, so launching a webstore you get access to global market and to target audience all over the world.
- You donâ€™t need to solve problems with storage of goods, their packing and shipment. It is also done by the seller.
The majority of online entrepreneurs are constantly battling with the problem of choosing products to promote. And how to pick out the ones that can bring maximum profit?
One strategy that we advise is to give up specific product selection and find a proper niche audience instead. Why this approach is better? There are several reasons:
Products get out of stock/production/market/fashion, etc., they come and go, and it can be hard to switch from one to another. Many affiliates have faced a situation when they invested much time, efforts and money into a product, but the latter declined in popularity or was sold out â€“ and the whole affair was over.
A great way of getting the whole new world of opportunities is to choose a narrow niche audience and try to understand their problems. You should switch from separate products to types of products that can solve problems of your audience. For example, instead of just promoting Go-Pro cameras go for all wearable and action cameras.
How to find your niche?
Turnkey affiliate websites are usually 100% automated, ready-to-use sites regarded to a certain online retailer such as Amazon.com. These stores are commonly equipped with special affiliate codes. They are fully functional and ready for visitorsâ€™ purchases bringing commissions to the website owner. There are different variants of affiliate business both for experienced marketers and newcomers.
There are a lot of offers by numerous merchants nowadays. Before deciding on a certain merchant read as much as possible about him and choose the most trusted one. Our choice has always been Amazon â€“ worldâ€™s biggest retailer with all possible items in its catalogue. Most affiliate webstores are already stocked with products and services. Some of them are sold together with keyword-reach domains and/or hosting. So you can buy a turnkey site without any extra costs or with minimal ones. You can choose a brand new westore and begin business â€œfrom scratchâ€ or buy a working site with income and traffic. It is usually more expensive, but itâ€™s an operating business which already brings money, so all you need to do is let it roll.
Ready-to-use affiliate webstores usually contain big catalogues in certain niches, and we think it works better than an alternative variant when owners promote just 1 to 10 products. They spend much time and efforts to optimize content, write reviews, buy links and so on. And then sometimes an item simply gets out of production and sales â€“ and the affair is over. Thatâ€™s why itâ€™s more preferable to have dozens or even hundreds of products and promote not separate ones but the whole site, catalogue and its sections.
Let’s say, after thinking a lot over your intentions of earning money you have strongly decided to start your own online business. This article will help you to choose the easiest and profitable variant to start with.
â€˜How to start a businessâ€™ is the most frequently asked question if you are looking for a good way to make money. Of course, there are a lot of ways and opportunities. But you want to choose the best one, donâ€™t you?
We have already told you about affiliate marketing business and its advantages. We wonâ€™t return to these points, just to remind you that taking part in an affiliate program is one of the easiest and fastest ways to go into business and to work from home via internet.
The first step you should take is to become an affiliate, a person who promotes companiesâ€™ product using special coded links. If someone purchases a product using your link, you will receive a commission â€“ your percentage of the sales price.
We would like to give you some more tips how to start affiliate marketing business as an associate.
In the previous blog post we talked about the advantages of affiliate business on the whole, and today letâ€™s speak why we choose Amazon as our main business partner. There are plenty of affiliate programs offered by major ecommerce companies such as Ebay, and we could make websites for any of those. But we do not. Why? Because we decided after weighing up all the facts to select the most promising partner, and an Amazon store is beyond comparison.
The Amazon.com affiliate program came soon after they first opened in 1996, and the system that rewards people who send buyers to Amazon was born. The Amazon affiliate program works by placing a cookie on any potential customers computer, when they complete a sale, you make money. Amazon currently have websites dedicated to many Countries including the United States, Canada, Mexico, the UK & Ireland, Australia, India, France,Â Germany, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Brazil, Japan, and China.
As well as being well established and having a worldwide reach, here are some more reasons why you should become an Amazon affiliate:-
- Amazon is the largest online retailer in the world. Its annual turnover exceeds $48 billion, and its 900,000 affiliate associates made $1,5 billion during the last year only. Amazon is also the fourth most successful startup of all times by growth, revenue and market capitalization. It was founded in 1994 as a bookstore, went online in 1995 and began its diversification, including one new branch after another: DVD, CD, video and MP3 downloads, electronics, software, videogames, etc. Then the company grabbed pretty much every non-digital products â€“ from food and furniture to diapers and jewelry. Nowadays there hardly exists an item which one cannot buy from Amazon.
- Amazon is a trusted and reliable brand â€“ millions of people all over the world are used to buy goods from Amazon on regular basis spending significant money there. Most of these buyers are both long-term and loyal customers. They know that thereâ€™ll be no problems with delivery and quality of products, and if by chance there is, that Amazon will rectify the problem quickly and effortlessly â€“ so they keep coming back and making more orders with no fear that other online platforms may bring. In every customer survey Amazon comes up in the number one position as the most popular and respected shopping destination.