Obviously, a very important step in making an Amazon Affiliate Commission is to actually have an Amazon associates account. Amazon doesn’t call their affiliates, affiliates. Rather, they use the term Associates. So from now on, please understand that I will use the words Associates and Affiliates interchangeably. They mean the same thing.
In this post and in the following few posts, I will walk you through how to set up an Associate’s account in Amazon as well as how to use the account properly. How to get paid and how to track traffic, clicks and conversions correctly so you know how well your website is performing.
Please Note: You will need to have a website before you open an account. Amazon wants to see the quality of the website you will be sending traffic to before they give you your Associate account. My suggestion, build a website with great content, no ads and is in some way helpful. Have a minimum of 10 posts. Make sure they are well written and include at least one picture. They will visit your website!
So lets begin with the first step, opening our first Amazon Associates account at Amazon.com.
You will need an email address. Enter your email address into the email box, and click on the radio button that says “I am a new customer.” Click on the button at the bottom that reads, “Sign in using our secure server”. That’s it for the first step.
Here you’ll need to add your name, email address, cell phone number (this is optional, but I suggest you do it if you can as it can help you if you loose your password. But it is not necessary.) Then the bottom two boxes you need to add a password. Make the password a great one. Something you can remember, yet strong enough that no one can guess or hack. I suggest using a mix of letters, numbers and at least one symbol like “%” or “#”. Then Click the yellow button at the bottom that reads “Create Account”.
When entering your name, it’s a good idea to use your legal name. The same name that you would have an employer write on your paycheck because one of Amazon’s payment options is to pay by check. This is helpful for people that are not in the USA. So use your “correct” and “full/legal” name.
On the next screen, we need to enter all of our payment details. The first name is the Payee Name. Again, your legal name. The note next to this box from Amazon reads: “Enter the name exactly as it should appear on the check. If the check is to be mailed to an individual other than the Payee, enter the name of the recipient in “Address 1″ below.”
As of the time of this writing, Amazon has a note/warning that residents of Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, North Carolina or Rhode Island are not eligible to participate in the Associates program. (I will write about how to get around this in later posts if you happen to be from one of these states.)
You will need to enter all of the information on this page, including a phone number. Then click on the yellow button “Next: Your Website Profile”.
This is the page where you enter all of the information about your website. This is the website that your account will be “connected” to. Meaning, it is the first ID they give you as an associate. “We will use this name to generate your unique Associates ID.”
So in the first box, just type in the name of the website. For example, I would type Associates Training into this box. This is not a URL, so don’t include any http: or.com information. Just the name you want to use.
In the second box, you’ll need to type your URL. There is space to add other websites. I suggest you do not enter anything else for now. Just your one website. “Your website, your blog, your Twitter feed, etc. If you have more than one website, please include your top 5 by traffic volume.”
The next box you need to tell Amazon what your website is about. Just give a brief description like, Associates Training is a website that teaches people how to make money using Amazon Associates program. Although I definitely wouldn’t use “make money” in any way, shape or form when submitting my site to Amazon. Or any where else for that matter. This is just an example.
The rest of the information needed should be self explanatory. For traffic I just chose “SEO”. For “How else do you monetize your website(s)?” It’s wise to just choose the last option, Amazon Associates is the only way I monetize my site.”
After you have filled out all of the information, you’ll need to enter the Captcha information and then click the yellow button at the bottom, “Finish”.
Once you reach this screen, you’ll have the option of entering your payment information now or later. I suggest you just do it now since you are already here and almost finished. Best just to get as much done now rather than waiting until later.
You will get full access to your account once you are done with the sign up process. But the “actual” process takes one to three business days until you are approved. So if you make any commissions and are not approved, you will lose that money. So it is best to wait for a final approval from Amazon before using their ads on your website.
It is usually pretty easy to be approved by Amazon. It is far less rigorous that Google’s AdWords. Just as long as your website doesn’t look spammy at all you should be fine.