[Advanced Guide] How I make Amazon Affiliate Sites

After Leith decided to show everyone on BHW up with a killer thread here, I decided to do a guide which is my exact method for passive income. This is how I make the most money in IM and SEO. Above Churn and Burn, selling SEO, SEO Consulting, and any other way I squeeze money out of IM, this is the most consistent way I have been able to make money.

I do apologize. I do know there are a few great guides on the subject on BHW. One from Nick Flame (Which I have referenced several times while building my own Amazon Sites) and I know Meathead will be doing a guide on this shortly as well.

I have no qualm or confusion about the fact I am confident Nick Flame and Meathead are more successful at this them me. I recently sold a few Adsense sites and smaller Amazon sites to invest into a new Amazon project. I am scaling the profit up as quickly as possible but am already making $100 a day after having the site up under a month. This is quick for me since I know what I am doing, but it should not take you long to make a killing on Amazon.

Enough idle chit chat, let us get down to business…

Why Amazon Affiliates?

I picked Amazon up after I was making pennies with my long term ad based sites. Even ranking super high competition KWs in the health niche I was getting low conversions and a few clicks a day. I optimized the site and capped at $50 a day in passive income. This was a massive site which had a HUGE PBN propping it up. These KWs were often very high search volume and high competition.

I then decided to try Amazon on the same site. My little $50 doubled to $100 overnight. I still had adsence ads on the site, but made a killing with small products and my traffic.

That was an eye opener for me personally. After a couple hick ups I decided to sell off a few websites which were ad based, liquidate my PBN pointing to the largest site and pump my resources into a new Amazon site which is making me $100 a day in under a month.

If you know SEO you know it is not that hard once you have networks to rank.

I picked Amazon because it is passive, Amazon is better to deal with than any other vendor I have worked with, and the money is GOOD.

How to NOT get banned from Amazon / Google

Yes, you can get banned from Amazon. Two things can happen to your Amazon Affiliate website, one is you get a penalty for thin content from Google. This is fairly common. Google does not like pages filled with ads and out bound links which is what most Affiliate Sites are.

That has been discussed to death. How to avoid that? A lot of original content and a few articles without out bound links.

What I did was do KW research for KWs in the niche with no real commercial intent, low CPC with adsense, and super low competition but decent search volume. I bought a $5 article on the topic and put it up. I then would simply do manual linking to my pages with affiliate products on them.

Why do this? The KWs I was targeting have no competition and due to low CPC, I will never get an SEO to compete with me. This gives my sites easy traffic and several pages which can act as a landing page to my offers and it vastly prevents a Google ban or penalty.

The topic many people do not talk about is getting banned by Amazon. You have two ways (Most common ways) to get a ban by Amazon. Before I get into that, most people never thought they could get banned from Amazon.

An Amazon ban is closing your account. You can apply as many times as you want so it is no big deal. The pain is if you get banned you need to replace ALL of your affiliate links. This makes it a huge pain in the butt to completely change up your website. For that reason alone I suggest you be careful and follow my advice.

The most common way Amazon will hit you is too many affiliate links OR have a lot of non – Amazon ads. If for some reason Amazon feels you have too little original content and a LOT of links on a single page, they can revoke your advertising permission. How do I ‘test’ this? I put an affiliate link on a site. By an affiliate link I mean I had about five or so links on a page with 300 words of spun content plus a couple images with my link. I had this site with about 100 pages with the same set up. I made a sale quickly and Amazon hit me for the thin content. This is also one of the reasons you should not combine Amazon with Adsense, it costs you money AND it can get you banned from Amazon due to thin content.

I split tested this a bit to see what I could get away with. You will skate by most of the time unless you get reviewed. Poor content is not the only cause. Poor content and a LOT of out bound links is. If I kept out bound links below 1 per 500 words with horrid content, I never had any issues.

Do you need to follow this guide? No. I do it just for my own peace of mind and so I do not need to re – tool a project later on.


How to Pick a Niche and Products

How do I pick a niche and the right products? It starts with KW Research. I brainstorm KWs which contain high selling products. These products are often automotive, home, and other such products. I always aim for $100 plus products so I will make at least a couple dollars per transaction.

A lot of guides exist for KW research (I even have one in JR VIP for how I pick a niche) so I will not dive into that. But I want to clear something up in this section. That is KW competition.

Most automated KW research programs will give false positives for KW competition. By this I mean a KW with ZERO competition will come up as high competition. This is because every program will check the top ten, the number of back links and the strength of the root domain.

On a surface level you will think this is right. But you are missing something important. You are missing the fact a site, especially Authority sites can rank for unrelated KWs.

In these cases you can get a flag of high competition because the top ten includes Youtube and Amazon pages but these pages are targeting a different KW and have no exact match anchor links backing them up.

Most SEOs will even think they are high competition, but they are often not. You need to check the individual pages back link profile and the top twenty to see if any sites are even targeting the KW.

False positives out of the way with automation, time to discuss how I get good Amazon KWs. Everyone who knows me knows I am not good at KW research. Competition analysis? I am spot on. So I buy most of my KWs I use. On BHW there are three Amazon KW sellers I have used:

1. Jared – JR Exec VIP & Expert Content Seller
2. Ste Fishkin – Lovable Troll and KW Seller
3. Andres – KW Seller and Content Seller

Jared is expensive, but when he has KWs they are top notch and the best I have used. True zero comp Amazon KWs. Ste Fishkin also has good KWs with very low competition and most likely in the future when Jared is out and I need more I will be using Ste.

Andres is my regular KW guy. KWs are better than most other sellers on BHW. Manually verified to be low competition. Not zero competition but low enough where a newbie can rank them.

I also keep an eye on buyer intent KWs such as ‘review’ or ‘best’ KWs. This has been covered a lot so just remember, you want KWs which people will make an action when they go to your page.


How I set up my Amazon Site

Now you have some KWs (You either got your own or you bought them) and you are ready to put up an Amazon site!

You want to get your hands on the BEST domain possible. Not a brand new EMD. The domain with the best possible metrics. I put several KWs on the same site. I like mid sized sites. Not one page landing pages sites but not 1,000 page sites. 20 – 100 pages is what I eventually shoot for.

I get content at least 1,000 words long targeting my KW. I include a link to my product I am reviewing within the text, images containing the product link, and I also include a table to the products the article is reviewing.

A table is done with the plug in ‘Easy Table’ in WordPress. I have tried several table plug ins but this one works the best for me.

I put the review table in two places, near the beginning of the content and near the end. Just like a good CTR placement for an Adsense site.

Why do I use a table? For an affiliate site, I want users to bounce from my page to the Amazon site as quickly as possible and browse. Sure, I target more expensive products but as long as I get a sale I am good to go.

The tables I set up typically have some basic product information. A link to the product in Amazon featuring an image, user rating, number of reviews, and some product specs. Not a lot of information but enough to give people a snap shot of information.

Most often people will not read my content. The content is there to help me rank and on the off chance I get someone to read it, I want a comprehensive review. I aim for a review of the product, how to use the product, and if applicable how to install a product. If I had an article about ‘hammers’ I would explain how to best use a specific hammer. This converts better than a regular informational article.

A note on content, for a quality Amazon site, which content is not super important, I always make sure I have high end quality. I do not expect it to play a role but if 1 out of 100 reads it, I can get several extra sales a month by having good content. This gives me a good ROI for paying $XXX for an article after a couple months, so I go for quality.

The site also will have manual interlinking. My non affiliate pages will have links to my affiliate pages. My affiliate pages will interlink with each other. I have category pages which link to each product in a category. This way the pages with my links to Amazon have the most link juice and a traffic funnel from my other pages.

RECAP –

1. Get an Amazon Affiliate Account.
2. Do KW research or buy good KWs
3. Find a Good Domain with some links within your niche
4. Put up good review content
5. Use careful link placement, images, and tables to give a lot of opportunities to bounce to Amazon
6. Do not get banned from Amazon or Google

Nice little recap out of the way, now to the fun part, link building…

SEO Reality Check

First thing first, SEO now takes time. Unlike before, it takes Google a couple weeks to get your site placed properly. Links take a couple weeks to kick into effect as well. This is not a churn and burn project so you must be ready to wait 90 days to get a ROI or rank. If not, go with single page burners and do not use Amazon.

I need to make this warning because even for a ZERO comp KW, it will take you a bit to pop into SERPs and rank with or without links. This is something most people get wrong. You need to wait for your links to kick in. Do not worry if you do not get a SERP boost from a Web 2.0 you built last week. Get back to me in six weeks if it does not work.

What links should you build?

Since this is my exact guide I will share all the juicy details on what I exactly do. Step one is foundational link building. This includes Web 2.0s which target my home page and inner pages with naked URL. I also do a Press Release targeting the home page and category pages with naked URL used as well. I do this to get everything indexed with or without Google Webmaster Tools.

One week later I do a second Press Release targeting another category page or two and the home page. Category pages are targeted with a naked URL, but for the second Press Release I use a branded anchor text.

If applicable I also do business citations, audio shares, video submission, etc. For these links I use branded anchor texts. I throw in some blog comments with naked URL on real websites related to my niche.

By week two I have a good back link profile containing manual comments, foundation links, a few Web 2.0 and a couple Press Releases. All of these links are either naked or branded URL. This makes sure everything is index and gives me a great and balanced back link profile.


Phase Two of SEO

After I have my foundation I check to see where I rank so far. I then target a single KW at a time. I start with the KW closest to number one. I build a handful of Web 2.0s (I have posted several times how I build web 2.0s and target long tail KWs with them) pointing to each page. These Web 2.0s will target LSI or partial match anchors and not my exact match KW.

I move onto another KW and wait two weeks for the Web 2.0s to kick in. If I used expired Web 2.0s I add in some 301 URL shorteners pointing to them to power them up. If they are new I use the 301s and I add a low velocity of links to each Web 2.0 to power them up.

After the two weeks I revisit the previous KW and see where it is. If it is still moving up and near the top I let it finish bouncing. If it is not moving or out of SERPs (When a term removes from top 300 that means it will come back but will be placed higher than before) I will move onto Guest Posts and PBN links.

My PBN links and Guest Posts target exact match and exact match + KWs. An exact match + anchor is where you include the target KW plus a common variation. Common variations are something like ‘Best or Review’ tacked onto the KW. I do this so I do not have a lot of anchors just for my target KW and I diversify but I still have the full benefit from an exact match anchor.

Depending on KW competition will decipher how many PBN links I build in this phase. For easy I start with 10. Medium 20. High competition 30 links.


Phase Three of SEO

Once I place PBN links I move onto another KW. I wait 30 days to see PBN links normally take full effect. I then revisit the KW after 30 days and if I am not ranking where I want to I add one PBN link with exact match anchor every other day for a week and add three or four PBN links. Once again, I move on and wait a month.

At this point I will add more Web 2.0s to add anchor diversity and target some LSIs as well. I add this around week three of waiting for KWs to bounce into place.

I normally never get past part three because my competition analysis is spot on. When I first started and I was not that good I would keep adding PBN links monthly until I rank. You can use public networks but I tend to find you need at least twice as many links. So if you want 4 links, you need at least 8 from a public network to get the same movement. I often find I need more than double but it is a good starting point.

When is a site done?

This is one I have an easy answer for. When I make enough money / ROI with a property. I project how much I will make from a site based on KW searches and the price of my product. I am normally close.

Before I used this method and got good I would stick with a site until I ranked the profitable KWs I found on the first KW research pass. Then I would move on.

I ALWAYS revisit a site every three to six months to check for new KWs and check KW trends. Sometimes KWs change or I may have more competition coming up in a niche. This helps me stay ahead of the curve.

Bonus! Business Advice Below –

SEO now takes a few months to take full effect. Gone are the days of ranking in a week. Due to this when you get your first check you will feel the need to blow it on some candy and soda, or what ever the kids these days do (Coke, booze, etc).

What you should do is re – invest into a new site. If you did it once, you can replicate the results. If it takes three months on average for a site to rank number one, if something happens to your site you will be out of luck unless you already had something started.

Also, when you make it big and move onto SEO full time, you will have a lot of free time if you are not working on a new project. If you ue your first month of profit to pay your expenses back and get more KWs and a domain, month two for content, and three for SEO expenses you will have two great sites in six months. This will double here on out and you will rapidly have an empire.

This also gives you something to work on and not blow your money. Building Web 2.0s is timely and good ones are expensive, so you can spend a lot of time getting really good at SEO by staying busy and also make your life easier in the future.