Join Amazon’s affiliate program or sell goods through the marketplace to capitalize on the site’s massive retail audience.
There are many ways to make money on Amazon. You can join Mechanical Turk’s marketplace and get paid to complete virtual tasks, publish an e-book or a print book through Kindle Direct Publishing. Or you can deliver items through Amazon Flex if the program is available where you live.
But Amazon’s status as the top-grossing online retailer sets two money-making opportunities apart from the rest:
Joined Amazon Associates, the company’s affiliate marketing program.
Selling stuff through the company’s e-commerce platform.
1. Become an affiliate through Amazon Associates
Participants link to Amazon products on their blog or social media channel and receive a commission based on follow-up sales. Amazon Associates is best for influencers who are already promoting products.
How Amazon Associates works
Affiliates earn a commission when a visitor to their website clicks on a link to an Amazon product and buys it. The visitor must purchase an item within 24 hours or add an item to their cart and purchase it within 89 days. Commissions are typically 1% to 10% of the purchase price less shipping, taxes, and fees.
How to sign up
To get started with the Amazon Associates program, you need a website that meets Amazon’s website requirements. Next, submit an application. If accepted, Amazon will require you to place its affiliate disclosure on your website. This means that partners should make all disclaimers easy for readers to find.
How to make money as an affiliate
Affiliate marketing is usually the best way to make money on Amazon. That’s because you have an integrated pool of potential customers who trust your judgment and are more likely to buy products you recommend.
Your success as an affiliate depends on tailoring products to your audience. Start by thinking about your audience’s needs and why people are following you. Or go straight to the source by sending a survey or email asking what type of products should be included on your site. Then formulate the relevant details in your posts.
Say you run a nature photography blog for beginners. Pairing it with a $65 aluminum tripod, you might add, “It’s light and compact, so it’s a good option for hikers. I took it with me on my three-day hike through Yosemite and it held up well in inclement weather.”
Once you have affiliate links on your site, focus on getting more traffic to those links to increase your chances of making money. Publishing content such as blog or Instagram posts frequently can help attract existing followers. And it can help your website appear in search engine results, thereby attracting new readers.
To add more affiliate links to your site, you should create a product page where you can list multiple links. This also gives readers easy access to the articles you recommend.
Or you start a series of weekly or seasonal posts in which you rate products. It’s also good to experiment with Amazon’s link, button, and banner options, which can help highlight the products you recommend.
2. Make money selling on Amazon
Those who want to start an online business can make money selling on Amazon. It requires an entrepreneurial spirit and significant effort to get off the ground. But with the right product, the potential benefits can outweigh the risks.
Before you start selling on Amazon, choose a profitable product. To do this, you need to consider selling costs such as manufacturing and location fees.
how to start
First, make sure you’re eligible to sell in the category you’ve chosen. Some products, like auto parts and watches, require Amazon’s approval before you can list them. Then determine how much it will cost to get your product into the hands of customers. This includes everything from materials and labor to packaging, labeling, and shipping.
You can outsource shipping, warehousing, and customer service by participating in the Fulfillment by Amazon program. But that will cost you, so weigh the options carefully.
How much does it cost to sell on Amazon?
Amazon’s fee structure depends on the type of seller: individual or professional.
Individuals pay 99 cents for each item sold plus a brokerage fee based on the product category. Also, sellers of media goods such as books, DVDs, and video games pay variable transaction fees for each item sold. Amazon’s shipping rates apply to all sales made by individuals.
Professionals pay a $39.99 monthly subscription, a per-article referral fee — which varies by product — and media article closing fees. For these sellers, site shipping costs apply to media items only.
They also have access to more product categories than individuals, can offer special promotions, and qualify for top placement on product detail pages. Amazon recommends the subscription program for those planning to sell more than 40 items per month.
As a private or professional seller, you probably have to fulfill what is known as Amazon’s A-to-z guarantee. That means you may have to get refunds, including shipping costs, if a customer isn’t happy.
So build some financial wiggle room into your business plan. Another important aspect is taxes. As a seller, you are considered to be self-employed. Although Amazon generally calculates sales tax on items, you’ll likely have to set aside more money to pay estimated quarterly taxes on your income.
How to Make Money Selling on Amazon
Once you know all the costs involved, research the prices for similar items. This will help you price items competitively.