Who can tell me if “link masking or cloaking” is a violation of the Google TOS? I think it is and I see dozens of affiliate sites doing it. I also see quite a few sites not using “nofollow” on their affiliate links. Unless your masked link says something like “I bought product X used in this review at Amazon.com” it would be a violation. I think if reported, you’d be in for a manual spam action against your site. Thoughts?

Two-tier programs exist in the minority of affiliate programs; most are simply one-tier. Referral programs beyond two-tier resemble multi-level marketing (MLM) or network marketing but are different: Multi-level marketing (MLM) or network marketing associations tend to have more complex commission requirements/qualifications than standard affiliate programs.[citation needed]
3.4 The number of New Players per individual household computer is strictly limited to one. Our measurements and calculations in relation to the number of New Players and Gross Revenues shall be sole and authoritative and the same shall not be open to review or appeal. We shall make the number of New Players and the relevant Gross Revenues figures available to you through our Affiliate program information site. To enable accurate tracking, reporting and commission accrual you must ensure that the Links between your site and the Sites are properly formatted at all times throughout the term of this Agreement.
Affiliate Contracts (i) Amend, modify or waive any material term or provision of any Affiliate Contract or any Third Party Contract as in effect on the Closing Date without the prior written consent of Required Lenders, (ii) enter into any new Affiliate Contract or Third Party Contract following the Closing Date, unless such contract is (a) substantially similar to the form of contracts entered into by Borrowers with the Affiliate Plants prior to the Closing Date and (b) promptly delivered to Agent or (iii) offer more favorable marketing fee arrangements under any Affiliate Contract than those marketing fee arrangements offered under any Third Party Contract.
We may disclose to you information as a result of your participation in the Affiliate program which information we consider to be confidential and proprietary to us ("Confidential Information"). Confidential Information shall remain strictly confidential and secret and shall not be used, directly or indirectly, by you for your own account or for your own business purposes or any other purpose, save only to the extent that such information is generally known or available to the public (other than through breach of confidentiality) and save only if required by law or legal process (in which case you will give us sufficient prior notice and cooperate with us to to prevent, limit, restrict and/or comment on the required disclosure).
Special Links may be created by you or made available to you by us. If we inform you that your Site does not qualify to use certain types of links, you must cease displaying those types of links on your Site. You are solely responsible for the content, style, and placement of each link that you place on your Site and for ensuring that Special Links (whether created by you or made available to you by us) include the appropriate formatting necessary for us to properly track referrals of our customers from your Site. You must not encourage customers to bookmark your Special Links. All Special Links must be accessed directly from your Site. For example, you must include your Associates ID or “tag” (appearing as XXXXX-20, or such other format as we may designate) as a parameter in the URL of each link you place on your Site to an Amazon Site.
(g) include any trademark of Amazon or its affiliates, or a variant or misspelling of a trademark of Amazon or its affiliates in any domain name, subdomain name, in any “tag” or Associates ID, or in any username, group name, or other identifier on any social networking site (see a non-exhaustive list of our trademarks listed on our Non-Exhaustive Trademark Table); or
Commissions are paid once per month by payment processor, a minimum of 30 days after the sale is completed.  Commissions will be paid on or about the 31st day of the month for sales made from the first through the last day of the previous month, and are paid by the Program Operator.  (Commissions earned during March 1-31st would be paid around April 30th-May 1st.)
Entire Agreement. This Agreement is the entire agreement between us for the Affiliate Program and supersedes all other proposals and agreements, whether electronic, oral or written, between us. We object to and reject any additional or different terms proposed by you, including those contained in your purchase order, acceptance or website. Our obligations are not contingent on the delivery of any future functionality or features of the HubSpot Products or dependent on any oral or written public comments made by us regarding future functionality or features of the HubSpot Products. It is the express wish of both you and us that this Agreement and all related documents be drawn up in English. We might make versions of this Agreement available in languages other than English. If we do, the English version of this Agreement will govern our relationship and the translated version is provided for convenience only and will not be interpreted to modify the English version of this Agreement.
For more information and suggestions about how to comply with these guidelines, please visit our page entitled "Affiliate Disclosure Requirements and Examples." Please note that this page is only intended to provide guidance. It does not purport to provide legal advice and it does not guarantee that you'll be in compliance with FTC regulations should you follow the suggestions presented. You are advised to seek and obtain your own legal advice on how these rules apply to your website or other promotional activities for which you receive compensation.
Amazon has already made similar adjustments in many overseas markets. In 2015, the company moved its European affiliate program to a category-based structure, and according to the affiliate management firm GeniusLink, the result was more of a subtle chill than a freeze-out. “There’s definitely some pain as a result of it,” says GeniusLink CEO Jesse Lakes, “but we haven’t had a single client who stopped doing business because of the new payout structure.”
Website Development Help – need help setting up your theme? I’ve been working with the same 2 developers for 3+ years. To hire them, sign up for a Freelancer account, post your job (WordPress theme installation) then invite user i333 or bdkamol to your project. If you want, contact me and I will introduce you to them via email. Both are great developers with reasonable rates, speak fluent English, and I outsource all my programming work to them.
In order to receive proper credit for sales, a person or entity must purchase through your unique affiliate URL. Masking or cloaking of the links (whether done by software or by a script, and sometimes referred to as “affiliate link cloaking”) may or may not work with parts of the Sites.  The Program Operator allows masking or cloaking but You must provide a repeatable process for our verification of the cloaked link, otherwise the use of the masked or cloaked link is disallowed.
(b) displaying Special Links and Program Content on your Site in compliance with the Agreement, all applicable laws, ordinances, rules, regulations, orders, licenses, permits, guidelines, codes of practice, industry standards, self-regulatory rules, judgments, decisions, or other requirements of any applicable governmental authority, including those related to disclosures (for example, if applicable, the U.S. FTC Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsement and Testimonials in Advertising) and electronic marketing, data protection and privacy (for example, if applicable, the Directive 2002/58/EC (Privacy and Electronic Communications Directive), and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (EU) 2016/679), and any agreement between you and any other person or entity (including any restrictions or requirements placed on you by any person or entity that hosts your Site),
Unless otherwise stated in an Offer Addendum, we will pay you referral fees on a monthly basis. Approximately thirty (30) days following the end of each month, we (or our designee, InfusionSoft) will send you a check for the referral fees earned on Qualifying Product revenues for that month, less any returns and canceled orders. However, if the referral fees payable to you for any month are less than $25.00, we will hold those referral fees until the total amount due is at least $25.00 or (if earlier) until this Agreement is terminated.
You are only eligible to earn Commission Fees on Qualified Purchases occurring during the Term. Commission Fees earned prior to the date of termination will be eligible for commissions only if the orders for the related FatCow Products and Services are not cancelled within (30) days and comply with all of the terms of this Agreement. We may withhold your final payment of Commission Fees for a reasonable time to ensure that all Qualified Purchases are valid and payment from Referred Customers are legitimate as determined by FatCow in its sole discretion.
Excellent article Chris! This will help me out a lot. I am a new author through amazon and my book is also being sold through KDP Select (The kindle option worldwide) but regardless of my advertising on my Facebook page, which cost money, I do not seem to be getting anywhere. With Amazon Associates, is it totally free and no cost to you or do you pay a fee over a certain amount of time. Also if you have any tips on how to get a book out there that would be excellent. My book is being sold at Books a Million, Barnes and Noble, and Alibris. I plan on doing a book signing at Barnes and Noble in hopes it will raise awareness of my book.
f) If it proves impossible to arrive at a mutually satisfactory solution through online mediation, we agree to submit the dispute to binding arbitration at the following location: for legal actions or proceedings between the Program Operator and you, in Anchorage, AK, USA under the commercial rules of the American Arbitration Association. Judgment upon the award rendered by the arbitration may be entered in any court with jurisdiction to do so. 

Thanks for your point for point description of what has worked for you. You have certainly given credibility to testing your results. Doing the technical aspect of setting the structured sites and e-mail marketing has been challenging for me. You have clearly described how the more sales you make your percentage goes up and you make more money. Apparently there are tested formulas that work for Amazon sales and getting people to Amazon sounds like a winner.
"Confidential Information" Defined. “Confidential Information” includes: (a) the Technology (b) any personally identifiable data or information regarding any end user; (c) any and all information disclosed by Company to MA, in whatever format, that is either identified as or would reasonably be understood to be confidential and/or proprietary; (d) any notes, extracts, analyses or materials prepared by MA which are copies of or derivative works of Confidential Information or from which Confidential Information can be inferred or otherwise understood; and (e) the terms and conditions of this Agreement. “Confidential Information” does not include information received from Company that MA can clearly establish by written evidence: (x) is or becomes known to MA from a third party without an obligation to maintain its confidentiality; (y) is or becomes generally known to the public through no act or omission of MA; or (z) is independently developed by MA without the use of Confidential Information.
Building a successful Amazon affiliate site does take a lot of work. But, even if you’re a beginner it’s a great way to learn the fundamentals of working online. The steps above gave you everything you need to know to get started creating your very own website. Now it’s time to get to work! Remember, success will only come with consistent and sustained effort.

9.2. Each party agrees not to use the other's proprietary materials in any manner that is disparaging, misleading, obscene or that otherwise portrays the party in a negative light. Each party reserves all of its respective rights in the proprietary materials covered by this license. Other than the license granted in this Agreement, each party retains all right, title, and interest to its respective rights and no right, title, or interest is transferred to the other.

(b) The Local Associates Products will be made available for Amazon customers to purchase through a specific page on Amazon.com assigned to each Local Associate (such page, the “Recommendations Page”). The Recommendations Page will include either a general Amazon.com search bar or a selection of Local Associates Products curated by you. Amazon reserves the right to modify the Products included in the Local Associates Products on any Recommendations Page. You must direct all Local Associates Program marketing to the Recommendations Page to be eligible for Qualified Purchases.
It can be time-consuming to find product images to use when promoting Amazon, the same thing goes for adding links. With EasyAzon I can add images, links, product info boxes and more by the click of a button directly from my own site. Super simple and it saves time and helps maximize earnings. If you monetize with Amazon take a look at EasyAzon here.
Hey Chris! I stumbled upon your site from a few people. I’m now interested in starting a niche business and grow from there. I’ve tried to target another niche, with keywords as a first timer, and still having difficulties targeting certain keywords. I would like to get a boost of motivation on starting a small and simple amazon style niche site. I don’t know if you covered this, but I’d like to know what sort of criteria that you go through when choosing a site. So far, I have found a keyword with the following criteria:
Commission Payment. We, or a HubSpot Affiliate, will pay the Commission amount due to you within forty-five (45) days after the end of each fiscal quarter for any Commission amounts that you become eligible for according to the Eligibility section above. We will determine the currency in which we pay the Commission, as well as the applicable conversion rate. We will not pay more than one Commission payment or other similar referral fee on any given Customer Transaction (unless we choose to in our discretion).Taxes. You are responsible for payment of all taxes applicable to the Commission. All amounts payable by us to you are subject to offset by us against any amounts owed by you to us.Commission Amounts. We reserve the right to alter or change the Commission amount. We will post all information regarding the Commission amount on the Program Policies Page. 
The License will immediately and automatically terminate if at any time you do not timely comply with any obligation under the Program Documents (as defined in the Fee Schedule), or otherwise upon termination of this Agreement. In addition, we may terminate the License in whole or in part upon written notice to you. You will promptly stop using the Program Content (including PA API and Data Feeds) and promptly remove from your Site and delete or otherwise destroy all of the Program Content and Amazon Marks with respect to which the License is terminated or as we may otherwise request from time to time.
Subject to the terms of the Agreement and solely for the limited purposes of participation in the Associates Program in strict compliance with the Agreement (including this License and the other Program Policies), we hereby grant you a limited, revocable, non-transferable, non-sublicensable, non-exclusive, royalty-free license to: (a) copy and display Program Content solely on your Site; (b) use only those of the Amazon Marks (as defined in the Trademark Guidelines) we make available to you as part of the Program Content, solely on your Site and in accordance with the Trademark Guidelines, and (c) access and use PA API, Data Feeds, and Product Advertising Content solely in accordance with the Specifications and this License.
This site holds no stock whatsoever. They are just promoting amazon products by ranking high for keyword terms around scooters “best pro scooter” “best scooters for kids”. People are searching for these terms in their thousands every month. They click on his amazon links, purchase products on amazon and then the owner of myproscooter.com will get commission on the whole basket.
This site is made available for educational purposes only as well as to give you general information about business practices and strategy, not to provide specific business advice. Information provided on the Business.com website should not be used as a substitute for legal, accounting, real estate, business, tax, or other types of professional advice.
I was following someone else’s guide and they said you should have a static front page, but I feel like I would be getting more views and more clicks if I had the opposite ie; my latest blogs on the homepage. I also checked my stats and when I link to an article/review people stay longer. When I link to the home page they don’t stay as long AND a higher bounce rate. My bounce rate for the homepage is literally 3,000 in the past month. They hit that homepage and stay for around 7 minutes which means most are probably reading the static page, but then they just… leave.
In addition to all of this, you don’t really have a store to look after. You have zero products to ship or be held responsible for. You are literally just the marketing arm, unlike the ecommerce business model where you are sourcing the products that you are selling and dealing with the customer service portions of the business, along with logistics.
Access more than a hundred courses on various aspects of Amazon, ClickBank, Affiliate Marketing and related domains on Skillshare, by simply subscribing to the platform at nearly zero cost. The best part is that you are not charged until a few months, so you can test things out and cancel subscription at any point if you want. The courses here include techniques on how to drive traffic to your website for free, how to use Instagram for promoting Amazon Products, how to run an Affiliate Business and a lot more.

These strategic buys can lead to new insightful data as well. You will see other products within your niche that the audience is prone to buy, which can help you in deciding to launch your next product. Also, each of these sites can become little satellite sites that can collect emails for your overall brand. This strategy is not at all new, and Jon Haver from Authority Website Income has already written a detailed post about the concept here.


… ensure that long, multi-topic pages on your site are well-structured and broken into distinct logical sections. Second, ensure that each section has an associated anchor with a descriptive name (i.e., not just “Section 2.1”), and that your page includes a “table of contents” which links to the individual anchors… you won’t see it on the results all the time — only when we think that a link to a section would be highly useful for a particular query.
Small-scale bloggers like Robey won’t be the only ones hit by the rate changes. Publications like The Wirecutter have built thriving businesses entirely on affiliate payments, which are made by vendors like Amazon whenever a referred customer buys a product. Though a number of companies offer similar programs, Amazon’s affiliate system is the most lucrative, and auto-tagged product links have become a significant part of many online businesses’ revenue. (That includes The Verge, which auto-generates affiliate links in some cases.) Though the relationship can be lucrative, it’s also entirely subject to Amazon’s discretion — and as Robey and others are learning, it can often change with little to no warning.
You can use affiliate links after the fact. You don’t have to decide upon building a WordPress site that you’re going to optimize it with Amazon affiliate links. You can decide down the road that you want to give affiliate marketing a try and, consequently, revisit old content, embed affiliate links within it, and start generating revenue that way--especially if your old content is finally starting to take off.
As an Amazon Affiliate your earnings is based solely on you. There's a woman on Amazon that makes a million dollars a month as an Amazon affiliate. How does she do this you may be thinking? She has built a quality website in the top “niches” on Amazon. She also has the ability to automate her business so it does the hard work for her. She's very smart when it comes to affiliate marketing…
Your web host is responsible for hosting all of the files necessary for your site to function. When choosing a web host you’re going to have a variety of options to choose from. Some will be dedicated towards sites with large volumes of traffic, while others will specifically host WordPress sites. We offer a detailed breakdown of hosting options here.
Each of the parties hereto agrees that all information including, without limitation, the terms of this Agreement, business and financial information, FatCow and vendor lists, and pricing and sales information, shall remain strictly confidential and shall not be utilized for any purpose outside the terms of this Agreement except and solely to the extent that any such information is (a) already lawfully known to or independently developed by the receiving party, (b) disclosed in published materials, (c) generally known to the public, or (d) lawfully obtained from any third party any obligation of confidentiality to the discloser hereunder. Notwithstanding the foregoing, each party is hereby authorized to deliver a copy of any such information (a) to any person pursuant to a valid subpoena or order issued by any court or administrative agency of competent jurisdiction, (b) to its accountants, attorneys, or other agents on a confidential basis, and (c) otherwise as required by applicable law, rule, regulation, or legal process including, without limitation, the Securities Exchange Act of 1933, as amended, and the rules and regulations promulgated thereunder, and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and the rules and regulations promulgated thereunder.
The affiliate marketing industry is somewhat unique in the transparency of many of its members. There’s a general willingness to share experiences, including both successes and failures. Below are some of the most in-depth and useful interviews and tutorials put together by affiliate marketers who put in the hard work to build up a profitable affiliate operation (in some cases, more than once):
I am new to this website and the funny thing is that l was looking for an objective analysis on starting an Amazon affiliate site. Your review on this issue is the BEST that i have ever seen in the last 3 years. This article was a joy to read. It was detailed, honest and very hard hitting especially when you are trying to get readers to understand that they MUST diversify their traffic sources and STOP relying on getting to first page on Google. As a result of reading your article l am changing my digital marketing services, affiliate marketing and , e-commerce strategy. I look forward to hearing new and innovative ideas from you on internet marketing. Keep up the great work!!!
All commissions are calculated based on the net transaction. In other words, all payment processor fees are first deducted from the sums collected from the customer. Then, all payment processor fees are deducted. The remaining amount is a commissionable sale. The commission rate listed on the website is then applied to determine the amount due the affiliate. Any sums paid for payment processor fees are not commissionable. The Program Operator may also charge a per transaction fee for every transaction processed. In the event that a per transaction fee is applied, the amount of the fee can be seen on the website. Any such fee is not commissionable and is also deducted from the sums paid by the customer, prior to the calculation of any commission.
I Really would publish content, add them on the article submission sites, i would get income… on the other hand must decrease my price tag to Bucks7 – since i don’t make a record, i don’t take full advantage of my buyer price whenever they gotten on my own internet site. It’s only not economical for travel to write down in lots of niche markets. Create on your own in one particular specialized niche, and strive to create content in this specialized niche for long periods of your energy (even once and for all). You may achieve a great deal of supporters as a result, and you will probably achieve supporters for undertaking the contrary. Article marketing is not hard, and something can every-fect and get better at with your leisure time.
This Local Associates Policy applies to any registered business that offers face-to-face customer experiences and that facilitates customer purchases on Amazon.com (“Local Associates Program”) operated by an Associate in one or more of its owned or operated facilities registered on the program portal at https://affiliate-program.amazon.com/local Associates Site (such portal, the “Local Associates Portal” and such facilities, the “Local Associates Facilities”). In order to participate in the Local Associates Program you must (A) be an owner or authorized employee of a registered business, (B) apply through the Local Associates Portal, (C) have your application accepted by Amazon, (D) not be also registered for the Amazon Associates Program, and (E) comply with the applicable provisions of the Associates Program Operating Agreement, including this Local Associates Policy.
Affiliate marketers cannot assume that they are immune from these new standards, even though they are not the final brand the customer is interacting with. They must be transparent about using any third-party tracking software to collect personally identifiable information on customers, including IP addresses. They need to be required to delete these entries from CPVLab, Prosper or other third-party tracking solutions they use.

Great article! I need to go back to your post many more times for it to properly go in and for me to understand. Sorry if my question is a strange one. I am quite new to the whole concept of amazon affiliate marketing. When we are advertising their products, do we spend any money ourselves? Or we are just middle wares advertising their product? In what case, we have to have inventory? Can we sell products in Amazon?
You agree not to intentionally solicit for employment any of our employees or contractors during the term of this Agreement and for a period of twelve (12) months following the termination or expiration of this Agreement.  Both you and we acknowledge that (i) any newspaper or other public solicitation not directed specifically to such person shall not be deemed to be a solicitation for purposes of this provision, and (ii) this provision is not intended to limit the mobility of either our employees or contractors.
He provided another example here where he created an article titled “The Perfect Website For You To Study“. In a nutshell, he stated about the way he construct his content by producing articles such as “Best Of Post” with corresponding “How To’s“. In other words, there is a distinct way of catching your readers/visitors attention by having consistency and technique in your article writing.
Then, came the dreaded Google algorithm updates. After ranking number one for "electronic cigarettes" and "electronic cigarette reviews," which were steadily driving massive amounts of traffic to his blog, his rankings fell off of a cliff. He tells me had made a huge mistake by solely relying on Google for traffic and not leveraging it to build an audience elsewhere.
For more information and suggestions about how to comply with these guidelines, please visit our page entitled "Affiliate Disclosure Requirements and Examples." Please note that this page is only intended to provide guidance. It does not purport to provide legal advice and it does not guarantee that you'll be in compliance with FTC regulations should you follow the suggestions presented. You are advised to seek and obtain your own legal advice on how these rules apply to your website or other promotional activities for which you receive compensation.
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