in Marketing

A Quick Tip to Make More Money From Amazon Associates

If you’ve checked out my authority website series, you’ll know that a good chunk of the income comes from the Amazon Affiliates program. While I expect that to change in the future as I add more monetization models into the website, right now it’s the main earner.

Anytime you have one source generating most of your income, and you haven’t started to hit the point of diminishing returns on that source, all of your energy and focus should go into maximizing that revenue stream.

Seriously — all of it. Barring some catastrophic event like hosting going down, the opportunity costs of not maximizing your revenue from your biggest revenue source is simply too big to ignore.

It’s a simple Pareto analysis. For me, Amazon is generating around 2/3 of my site’s income, and growing every month. Why would I focus anywhere else right now?

OK, so I’ve beaten that point into the ground. Now, how do we actually do this?

Do an in-depth Pareto analysis of your affiliate sales

Every month, you can download a report of your earnings and orders. There is gold in here, if you understand how to pan for it.

Here’s one way to do it:

  1. Download last month’s report
  2. Do a sort by earnings, from largest to smallest
  3. Use the formula =sum($J$2:J2) and drag it down a new column to get a cumulative sum
  4. Create a cell that is a total sum of earnings
  5. In another column, drag the formula =J2/$Sum/$Cell down the column and format it as a percentage

What did we just do? We created a percentage of total earnings number. From here, we can quickly see the how many items made up a certain percentage of our sales. For me in August 2016, I sold around ~500 items. The top 38 items were responsible for 50% of my income, and the top 137 were about 80% of my income.

That means that 7.5% of the items I sold made up 50% of my income, and 27.5% made up 80%. Pretty damn close to the classic 80/20 rule!

What can we do with this infomation?

Now that we know the vital few items that make up the majority of our sales, there are a lot of different ways to increase earnings from Amazon. Here are a few, off of the top of my head:

  1. Improve the formatting and positioning of the pages that link to those products
  2. Redo the keyword research for those pages in more depth, looking to add more long-tail keywords to the mix
  3. Create new articles designed for social traffic that tie-in to the content on those pages (for internal linking)
  4. Create special CTAs (exit intent especially) on those pages recommending those products instead of the standard opt-in
  5. Remove all display ads on those pages and consider going full-width so as not to cannibalize the product links
  6. Create review roundups or single-product reviews based on the products in those posts
  7. Create new pages for similar products that you can rank just as easily

As you can see, the list is only limited by your imagination. I’m sure there are a ton more I haven’t thought of, so definitely leave those in the comments if you have any. I’d love to hear them!