Banned From Amazon Associates
When I woke up on Sat 10th March 2012 I was not expecting to read what I did. An email from Amazon Associates telling me that I was no longer welcome to be an affiliate with Amazon.
Downer to say the least. Having generated over a million dollars in sales for them I expected some kind of explanation at the least.
All I got was a generic email saying that I was not making it clear on one of my sites that my links were going to Amazon.
Now,a week and a half later I have emailed them multiple time and never got a reply. All I wanted was an explanation as to which site was the problem, and what I could do to fix it, and could I then have my account back.
It’s funny, but in a way it has come as a relief. Every morning since I began to earn money in this game I wake up with a slight dread about all my earnings being taken away from me. What if I get banned from Amazon, lose my CJ, or Shareasale, or Pepperjam account? What if my measly Adsense earnings get taken from me?
Well, it has happened and the world didn’t end.
It is what it is.
- So, what now?
Alternatives To Amazon Associates
The good new is that all is not lost. And actually for many of you you could be making more money with Amazon if you use a third party for Amazon links rather than your own.
It is all down to what commission tier you are on by the end of the month. Personally I always hit 8% or 8.5% but many of you may not even be hitting 6% by the month end. If not then the great news is that there are services that will pay you 6% commission. They will convert your existing Amazon links to theirs with the simple install of a piece of code on your site. And if you do not have affiliate links on your site they will convert any link going to sites like Amazon etc into an affiliate link.
As they work with so many people they always get the top % payout every month. They take a 25% cut of any sales you generate, leaving you with 6% at least.
For me this is not good, I am now down at least 25% a month, but it is better than a kick in the teeth from an angry Donkey!
Sign up for Viglink and get a guaranteed 6% Amazon Associates commission.
I have installed it on sites that are obviously not the problem as far as getting banned, but it would be nice to know which site was the problem so I can fix it and use Viglink there too.
In one way this has been a wake-up call for me. I don’t know about you but I have realized how lazy I have been. I talked about this in the forum but basically after I got banned I hunted around different networks for other advertisers who offered affiliate programs for some of the products I deal with. One of them I had already tried on a network apart from Amazon and it never earned a cent. So I went back to Amazon.
But I tried it again after the ban with a different network and a different company.
Their site obviously looks different to Amazon and to the other program I had tried.
And we did some quick sums on the forum based on the daily average I was getting.
It turns out that over the 70 days that I had Amazon links for this site, rather than the new affiliate link I lost over $3000!
It goes to show the power of testing out different programs that have different landing pages. It also shows that testing different layouts on your own sites can greatly effect the amount of money you will make. So test and test again. And don’t just assume that Amazon is going to make you the most money. I was very guilty of this so lesson learned I hope.
OK peeps, this isn’t going to be a long post. I just wanted to get it down in writing here that I got banned from Amazon, it’s a real bugger to be honest. I have spent a week and a half now changing out links to other networks, installing Viglink code on sites, and swapping over to a different Amazon account where I could. And where I assumed that the sites were following all the rules.
The main gripe is that they won’t tell me what the problem site was and the notification was vague. I always put the Amazon disclosure on my sites, but if I have overlooked it I would like to know.
Ensure that you have this on your sites, it is part of the agreement you enter into with them. Mine is on my Disclaimer page.
Anyway, a comment would be nice to show you are thinking about poor ‘ole Dave in his moment of Woe!