First of all, I love their site. I buy many things from Amazon, and it’s hard to beat the name trust you get with Amazon. I love that you can buy SO much stuff from there. Basically if you can think of it, it’s on Amazon. I love their affiliate management interface (except it updates every 24 hours), but getting reports, and tools is a snap. I love their API for pulling products (even though I was having trouble after their recent change for signed authentication). So that’s a lot of love….
The bad? Well, their cookie life is brutal. They only offer a one day cookie for earnings. That potential customer can’t “sleep on it”, and if they do, you get nadda. So it’s strictly related to impulse purchases only or you’re relying on them doing the research and are ready to buy when they go to your blog or store front. Tough. Their commission percentage is pretty low as well, and especially compared to other networks. You’ll hear arguments that you’ll make it up on the name trust, and that will convert to more sales, etc.
Bottom line is that I’ve tried promoting Amazon multiple times and have not had good luck. Is this Amazon’s fault? Is their network that bad? No. I’m definitely the weak link on this one. For whatever reason, I have not tapped into the proper targeted crowd for Amazon. I feel like I have a good feeling about EPN, but Amazon, I’m still reaching out in the dark.
Clearly, there are many individuals making excellent earnings with Amazon, so where did I gone wrong? I believe it was my approach. First of all, I’ve always intermixed Amazon with EPN sites, heavily promoting EPN, while loosely promoting Amazon. Also, I was working in niches that worked good with EPN. These niches may be producing naturally poorly with Amazon. I’ve also pursued store front style sites using Amazon’s API pulling ‘related’ products. Talking with few people that do well with Amazon (People, it’s important to talk to others and learn), and they seem to be having excellent results with blog / review type sites. Working the SEO organic long tail, etc. This was never my strategy with Amazon or EPN for that matter.
Today, I created two new WordPress blogs focusing on product review/blog angle related to products. This time, my focus in on Amazon with a small focus on EPN (only showing 2-3 auctions), etc.
To do this, I discovered a fantastic WordPress plugin called ReviewAZON. I cannot believe how cool this plugin is. First off, it’s already up-to-date with new Amazon authentication structure, so it’s good to go there. Below is a listing of product features advertised on their site.
- Get Lifetime updates – Pay once and get lifetime updates and product enhancements for the life of the product.
- Use ReviewAZON on UNLIMITED Domains! Buy it and use it on some or all of your domains.
- Access to the ReviewAZON Support Forum: Join our community of ReviewAZON users and get the latest product updates, support information as well as user tips and tricks to make your blog a success!
- ReviewAZON allows you to display over 25 different pieces of product content such as average customer rating, product description, customer reviews, pricing, brand, manufacturer, product details and more!
- Detailed product user guide helps you every step of the way when it comes to installing, configuring and using the ReviewAZON WordPress plug-in. Also learn how to make your own custom templates quickly and easily.
- Build complete blogs in a matter of hours instead of days or weeks allowing you to focus on other things such as promotion and creating additional blogs.
- Easy to use and intuitive administrative tools make configuring ReviewAZON a snap!
- Ajax driven product search dialog screen allows you to search by product category, custom sort parameter and product keywords to find just the products you are looking for quickly to add quality content to your blog in just minutes.
- Support for all the Amazon Affiliate programs including Canada, United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany and Japan.
- Flexible HTML templates let you control the output of Amazon data to your users with virtually unlimited ways to display pertinent and meaningful content to your blog readers.
- Custom YouTube video search screen allows you to search for YouTube product reviews and add them to your blog to enhance the reader experience.
- Display Product Accessories and Similar Product listings along side your product post pages by showing them in-line or by using the custom sidebar widgets that come out of the box with ReviewAZON.
- Use the built in Custom Template Manager interface to make custom template changes on the fly and update all your blog posts with a single save!
- Custom Template Token Reference tool allows you to see exactly what tokens are available for use with that particular template without having to reference the manual each time you make a change.
- eBay integration with PhpBayLite or PhpBayPro enables you to display eBay listings along side the products you are promoting to help increase your ROI and affiliate commissions.
- Built in custom Sidebar Widgets helps you to display information such as product Brands, Price Ranges and Featured Products to your customers to better help them find the information they need on your blog.
- Use the built in Tabbed product listing interface to display product information to your users in a tab layout instead of the normal vertical layout.
- SEO friendly image and product URLs can be configured to display human readable links that not only help your readers but also boost on page SEO for your blog.
- Output Caching allows you to speed up the rendering of product content to your blog readers by reducing the load time and the number of calls to the Amazon web service.
- Make your blog product content stand out by providing your readers with timely and informative customer reviews on the products you are promoting.
- Continuously add product posts to your blog by “Drip Feeding” them over a defined set of time by using the Bulk Product Post feature of ReviewAZON. You can have products automatically post to your blog over the course of days, weeks and even months allowing you to focus on promotion rather than content creation.
What I particularily like is the buld search and post of Amazon products. Here you can create many blog entries (inserted in random times) to your blog (this is what they refer to as “Drip Feeding”). They also provide a YouTube review feature where you can search YouTube for related videos and include them with your post. Very cool. Also the ability to include actual Amazon reviews fills content quite nicely. You can edit content surrounding your Amazon fed posts as well to create a more personal review.
The eBay integration is great. I went with PHPBay Lite version for now, which provides more than enough control for what I”m trying to. Remember, I’m trying to focus on Amazon vs. EPN on these particular blogs.
If you’re looking for some quality Amazon integration for your WordPress blog, this could be the plugin for you! How effective has it been for me? Too soon to tell, but I’m very optimistic. I’ve changed my niches to more ‘commercial’ products and plan on working the long tail. The content definitely supplies a lot of keywords. My big concern is duplicate content penalties. My goal is to break up the content and insert as much as I can to help avoid this.