Amazon Affiliate Marketing Fees

Report: Amazon cuts affiliate commissions across categories

Report: Amazon cuts affiliate commissions across categories
Written by publishing team

Diving Brief:

  • Amazon is lowering the commission rate for its affiliate program in a number of product categories, according to a report from CNBC, citing an email obtained and sent by Amazon to affiliate members. An Amazon spokesperson also confirmed the change.
  • The email was sent to Amazon affiliates on Tuesday, explaining the new price tag and that it will go into effect on April 21.
  • Furniture, Home, Home Improvement, Lawn, Garden, Pet Products, and Pantry drops from 8% commission to 3% commission per folio. Grocery, which currently takes a 5% commission, will drop to 1%. Healthcare and Personal, which currently brings in a 4.5% commission for affiliates, will drop to 1%.

Diving Insight:

Amazon’s move to cut commissions for its affiliate marketing program is the latest example of how a few big retailers seem to be tightening up an area of ​​digital marketing known for big scams. While an Amazon spokesperson told CNBC that the changes are being made as part of Amazon’s standard business assessments, the timing of the shift during the coronavirus pandemic — which has dramatically affected retail sales in many ways — could help the e-commerce giant offset that. Losses across some categories.

Some of the biggest cuts on commissions are for categories like groceries that are expected to be a significant growth opportunity for Amazon as consumers change their shopping habits during the health crisis, a shift that is expected to provide a boost to online shopping in general. Grocery sales rose nearly 26% in March, across all channels, the largest increase in at least 25 years, according to a Digital Commerce 360 ​​report on advance monthly numbers for the Commerce Department. This comes at a time when sales have fallen across many other categories that are seen as nonessential.

The news comes on the heels of reports that Walmart has suspended its influencer programs affiliated with social commerce site MagicLinks and e-commerce giant Rakuten. Previously, Amazon’s affiliate marketing program removed third-party sellers Skimlinks, Sovrn, and CJ Affiliate. Third-party affiliates can earn a percentage of the final sale more than just a commission on a single item.

Publishers will likely be affected by backtracking from large affiliate programs since a number of them have created revenue-generating product recommendation engines over the past few years that take advantage of affiliate links, according to Folio. Bloggers and others who have built businesses around product recommendations will also find great success, according to CNBC.

Whether it’s in response to the COVID-19 pandemic or not, it’s clear that Amazon is tightening its affiliate marketing program in a way that will help it retain a larger portion of referral sales.

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