Amazon as an Affiliate Opportunity
One of the largest eCommerce organisations on the Internet with multiple sites covering all the affluent regions of the globe is of course Amazon. It’s sheer size, popularity and sales volume make it an amazing opportunity for anyone looking to start an affiliate marketing income stream.
is of course the area of digital marketing where you are basically selling products, sometimes digital, often physical.
The Significance and Value of eCom
is highlighted by the infographic below which charts the various statistics for Global Online Retail Spending since 2014 and projected into 2018. As you can see, this shows a massive existing marketplace which is growing steadily year on year.
The largest site in this sector bar none is Amazon.
A Bit About Amazon
Here are a few statistics specific to Amazon:
- Amazon has over 2,000,000 (2 million) active marketplace sellers
- Over 2,000,000,0000 (2 billion) products were purchased through Amazon in 2016
- Amazon made over $74,000,000,000 ($74 billion) in net sales in 2016
So as you can see, the Amazon pie is ginormous – and growing even bigger every year.
Wouldn’t it make sense for you to grab your own slice of that pie? Of course it would! That just HAS to be a total no-brainer doesn’t it?
How Can Amazon Work for Me?
OK, for most of us, especially if we are newbies, one of the major stumbling blocks in setting up your own eCom business is sourcing products to sell.
Now, as with many other Digital Marketing sectors there is always the option to create and/or procure your own products but this will be an extremely time-consuming and expensive business. If like me you need to get earning as soon as possible then it makes sense to start by “piggy backing” off of an existing, proven method.
This allows you to create an initial online income which you can then scale upwards allowing you to achieve growing time freedom. It does this by augmenting and eventually replacing your JOB income at which point you can opt to go fulltime online.
Then, with a steady income to finance you, you can if you wish move on to investing in creating your own products or buying your own physical stock to further grow your business using multiple income streams.
On this basis does it not make perfect sense to use the power and influence of the largest retailer in the world to get your own fledgling business flying? Of course it does!!!
So How Do I Get Started?
No matter where you want to get to, creating an initial income through a proven sales machine will give the freedom to do whatever you wish and go in whichever direction you desire as your business grows.
We have established and agreed that Amazon is the best possible platform on which to start – millions of existing vendors and products; billions in annual sales; with a superb reputation and the sales outlet of choice for almost everybody with an internet connection.
So how do you participate in the Amazon opportunity without investing a dime in building your own product inventory, or hundreds maybe thousands of hours building your own site or sites?
Become an Amazon Associate
As discussed elsewhere in this blog one of the easiest places for a newbie to begin a Digital Marketing career is in affiliate marketing.
To briefly summarise, the upsides of affiliate marketing are
- you do not have to invest large amounts of time and/or cash in product creation
- you do not have to invest large amounts of time and/or cash in sales page copywriting
- you do not need to invest large amounts of time and/or cash in funnel building
- you do not need to invest large amounts of time and/or cash in any of the 1001 other time and cash consuming activities that the product vendors do
And the downsides of affiliate marketing could be considered by some to be
- you do not own or control the product so you cannot maximise the earning potential from it.
Now the pros and cons of affiliate marketing are discussed at length elsewhere in this blog so I will leave it there for now. Suffice to say that in my humble opinion affiliate marketing IS the easiest and cheapest route into the Digital Marketing Universe for the average newbie.
Indeed, even most well established product creators and vendors still remain active as affiliate marketers because it is an easy way to maintain multiple income streams without taking up too much valuable time.
Amazon has one of the largest affiliate programs on the Internet. Thousands upon thousands of their associates make full-time incomes using the Amazon Associate program to monetise their websites, blogs and other Internet real estate.
As an Amazon Associate you earn commission (or advertising fees) simply by sending potential customers to the Amazon marketplace where, if they make a purchase, you earn a percentage.
What Will I Need to Invest?
As with ANY serious business, you WILL need to make an investment. In this particular scenario Amazon requires you to advertise products through a website or an app over which you have control (and preferably ownership), and this is tested by them as part of the account setup process.
None of that should put you off if you really are serious about building an online business. To be a serious player you are going to need a strong online presence anyway, and having your own website(s) and domain(s) are essential requirements.
If stake money is an issue for you, “worry ye not!!!” as Will Shakespeare may have put it. Just read on for my advice and some proposed solutions that should do the trick for you.
As detailed elsewhere, you can purchase a domain name from as little as $1 per year, but it is recommended that you go for a .com domain for maximum credibility, which typically costs $10-$15 per annum.
Then you will need hosting, and again if you want to shop around you will find a full range of pricing – mainly on a monthly/annual charge basis although there are a few once-only payment lifetime access deals around.
Personally I believe that the reliability of your hosting is paramount, and this is an area where you should not skimp. Even so, there are plenty of good value deals out there and I fully recommend and use 1&1 myself. For well under $10 per month (I pay annually but the monthly deal is also great value) I have unlimited webspace on which I can host an unlimited number of domains with as near as dammit 100% uptime. This package is more than sufficient for a beginner to intermediate user and you will be certainly be earning many thousands of dollars a month at this level of hosting before traffic and bandwidth limits force you to upgrade.
Another popular option with an excellent reputation among marketers is Hostgator.
If you follow my first recommendation and build your website using WordPress then you will not need to pay anything extra – it is FREE!! There are literally hundreds of free themes and plugins available to personalise your site – with thousands more paid offerings for you to consider once you have established an income. It is simple to install and maintain and enjoys huge global popularity.
Another excellent option is StoreBuildr which supplies you with pre-built fully customisable Amazon stores – simply upload to your webspace, and use the integrated full featured design interface to add the products and content of your choice. StoreBuildr incorporates the Instantazon plugin which generates all the product details for you, automatically linking them to your unique Amazon Associate ID – and packages start at less than $10 one time payment.
And How Much Will I Make?
How much you make depends on 3 main factors:
As with any sales based business, affiliate marketing is a numbers game. As your business develops you will find your your own ratios for the Prospects – Leads – Conversions – Earnings continuum but the basic truth is that the more people you put your offering in front of, the more people you will convert to customers. Therefore the traffic you generate to your website is the first factor in how well your income will grow.
Traffic can be free or paid – there are pros and cons to both but I would suggest that if you follow any paid traffic routes test the water first!! For an excellent and comprehensive guide to FREE Traffic sources I heartily recommend John Thornhill’s Simple Traffic Solutions which I have purchased and use myself.
Contrary to what you may assume from the way some Marketeers appear to worship the great god Traffic, on it’s own it can only be about as useful as a chocolate welding rod.
There is absolutely nothing in it for you if you get hundreds or even thousands of people being driven to your blog, website, affiliate offer or whatever if none of them actually interact with it!! To be of any value to you, your traffic needs to be the right quality – they preferably need to be actively seeking solutions to problems, and you need to be offering such solutions in a way that captivates their interest long enough for them to seriously consider your offer and not just bounce!!
Again, these themes are covered elsewhere but from the viewpoint of this article a huge advantage of working using Amazon is that everyone knows who Amazon is and what Amazon does, and most people searching out Amazon-related content are already looking to purchase. You just need them to purchase through YOUR links, not your competitors’ ones!!
It goes without saying that people purchasing high ticket items will create bigger commissions. But never forget that on the flip side, there are likely to be far more potential purchasers of lower priced items.
Which is better?
- 1 purchaser of a $500 computer system? OR
- 50 purchasers of a $10 mouse?
- How about a mixture of both?
The answer to that will vary from person to person, so I will leave you to ponder it – and as you begin to make sales and establish your own ratios that in itself will guide you as to which path(s) you wish to follow.
Suffice to say, there is a multitude of folks out there making
- part-time incomes to improve their current lifestyles
- full-time incomes to avoid the need to work for a boss ever again
- and massive incomes to provide total financial freedom and security for themselves and their families.
The sky really is the limit. It is totally up to you how far you take this opportunity. BUT – you have to act in order to benefit – and there is no time like the present!!
Check out the resources listed below and get yourself started on the path to financial freedom through the Amazing Amazon Opportunity – and DO IT NOW or you probably never will!!
Web Hosting and Domain
OK, so as already stated in order to become an Amazon Associate you are going to need some Internet Real Estate. 1&1 and Hostgator are my recommendations for reliability and value – and not only will they supply you with full webhosting packages, but they are also excellent sites to find and register your own domain.
Once you have your domain name sorted out, and somewhere to host it, it is time to start building your site. WordPress is the software of choice for many Internet Marketers and indeed for a vast number of non-IM websites across the globe. It has many advantages including simple facilitation of setting up your blog. And the core product is absolutely FREE of charge. For so many users, their blog becomes the hub of all that they do on line and serves as the glue which holds together all the other components of their online empires.
StoreBuildr is more specialised and dedicated to the construction of niche Amazon shopping websites. It can of course stand alone and apart from WordPress but you will find that you are going to need access to a WordPress site since a key component of StoreBuildr is the Instantazon PlugIn which only works inside a WordPress installation.
Although Instantazon is available as a stand alone product you will probably find that the best value for you is to purchase one or more Done For You niche StoreBuildr websites and get your copy included.
Instantazon is a WordPress plugin which generates all the code required to create your own unique Amazon Product ads with which to populate your on line stores. Instantazon ads can also stand alone as part of any article or post you wish. Code can be generated for use on any HTML page, or specifically for WordPress pages – so you can place ads almost anywhere but you will need a WordPress installation in which to install Instantazon.
Bring It All Together
So with your website(s) in place you need to bring it all together through your Amazon Associate account. There are various options available dependent on which worldwide markets you wish to be active in, and you will need your account details plugged into Instantazon before you are finally ready to start driving traffic to your own stores and to begin earning those Amazon Associate commissions.
Start Driving Traffic
Now you are ready to start driving traffic from which you will start to make your first sales and begin to build your online income.
In my opinion the very best resource you can have for ideas and training in how to get that traffic moving is Simple Traffic Solutions from John Thornhill, who has used the techniques he teaches in this superb value course to achieve literally billions of hits and to generate many millions of dollars in revenue.
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