Amazon Affiliate Marketing Fees

Are The 2021 Commissions Worth It? – Multichannel Merchant

Amazon Associates logo feature
Written by publishing team

The fact that one of the largest companies in the world also runs one of the largest affiliate marketing programs out there, comes as no surprise to anyone. The Amazon Associates Program is responsible for creating passive income streams for bloggers, YouTubers, influencers, and other social media marketers.

But in April 2020, affiliate marketers took a hit when Amazon decided to change their payout rates. While this issue may seem insignificant in light of the economic crisis caused by the pandemic, it is worth noting that the people who were dependent on this current for their income were at the other end of the huge and devastating losses.

To understand whether commissions are worth the effort, we must first understand how affiliate marketing works and what changes are in the Amazon Affiliate Program rates.

How does the Amazon affiliate program work?

When a person earns a commission for advertising the product of a company or another person through content or marketing campaigns, this is known as affiliate marketing. Recently, the process of promoting products has become easier thanks to Amazon Associates. The affiliate just has to search for the product they like and include it in their blogs or videos via a specialized link provided by Amazon.

Now, every time someone buys the product through this link, the affiliate marketer gets a small portion of that profit. Payout eligibility may vary from one customer to another – some may get paid for each click, others get paid for the number of leads they generate, but most get paid for each sale.

Program prices

The reason for the price change is still unknown. But there are quite a few assumptions circulating on the Internet. One key assumption is that sellers on Amazon have asked Amazon to lower prices to help them weather the pandemic. Others say Amazon just wanted a bigger piece of that sweet profit cake. Amid all this speculation, the real reason behind the changes that will take effect remains generally elusive.

The following table highlights some of the pre-pandemic rates:

Categories Previous rates
Physical video games and video game consoles 1.00%
Televisions and digital video games 2.00%
Amazon Fresh and toys 3.00%
Various Amazon devices, watches, jewelry, suitcases, shoes, and handbags 4.00%
Digital music, grocery, physical music, digital video 5.00%
Furniture, Home Improvements, Supplies, Lawn & Garden 8.00%
Luxury Beauty, Amazon Coins 10.00%

During the pandemic, Amazon has not only changed payment rates, but has also made new batches of products. They are illustrated in the table below:

Furniture, Home Improvement, Lawn & Garden, Home, Pantry, Pet Products, 3%
Cosmetics, headphones, musical instruments, commercial and industrial supplies 3%
outdoor tools 3%
Vegetables 1%
Sports 3%
baby products 3%
Health and personal care 1%
Amazon Fresh 1%

Amazon has used more ambiguous terms to describe its product categories. Amazon doesn’t need new marketers to promote the sale, it can do this pretty well on its own. The product marketers and their affiliates are upset that they were directly responsible for generating the traffic on this site and they are the reason for this company’s growth in the first place.

Below we have compared Amazon Associates commission rates to the affiliate programs of some of its competitors:

Categories Amazon ebay Walmart
Furniture, Home Improvement, Lawn & Garden, Home, Pantry, Pet Products, 3% 4% 4%
Cosmetics, headphones, musical instruments, commercial and industrial supplies 3% 4-5% 4%
outdoor tools 3% 1% 4%
Vegetables 1% 1% 4%
Sports 3% 1% 4%
baby products 3% 1% 4%
Health and personal care 1% 1% 4%

Amazon Associates Commissions: Am I Still Worth It?

In the larger scheme of things, one could argue that something is better than nothing. Although Amazon has lowered prices, it has also removed the 0% commission requirement from its programs. Therefore, you can still generate revenue.

More established content creators and marketers may not be bothered by this because they will still generate a huge amount of traffic through their content, which in turn will generate a good amount of commission money. Besides, there is always the opportunity to run a standalone campaign using affiliate programs with integrated management and analytics. These bloggers and content creators may collaborate directly with the product brand and earn more commission themselves.

However, the narrative is somewhat different for the hobbyists, budding content creators, and social media marketers out there. They may not have enough traffic on their content to collaborate directly with big brands, so they have to rely on Amazon’s affiliate program to generate revenue, even though revenue is low.

Setup for the affiliate program is fairly easy and provides valuable information. There is no black or white answer to this question. As long as you can generate traffic on your website, you can generate revenue with the Amazon affiliate program.

Alex Sysov is CEO and co-founder of promotion

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publishing team