What’s the difference between the Amazon influencer vs Associate program? How do they work, and is it worth it to join both? We’ll address all these questions and more, uncovering how these Amazon creator programs work and which one will benefit you the most.
As a content creator, there’s no doubt you know about Amazon, and you’ve probably heard about Amazon’s creator programs. That’s where the Amazon Influencer and Amazon Associates programs come into play.
Both programs compensate creators who refer Amazon products successfully. When those referrals result in a customer making a purchase, the creator earns a commission!
Let’s take a closer look at Amazon Influencer vs Associate, so you know which path is the best to pursue for yourself.
Amazon Influencer Vs Associate Program: What’s The Difference?
Amazon provides an incredible opportunity to creators who can monetize their product recommendations and earn commissions as affiliates for Amazon.
This isn't Amazon FBA or other Amazon programs.
It is Amazon affiliate marketing, and top affiliates can earn a full-time income from product referrals alone!
If you create content and want to share your favorite products with your audience, Amazon is a natural fit. They are the world’s largest online retailer, home to thousands of products in hundreds of product categories.
Whether you’re a food influencer or a travel blogger, there are relevant Amazon products available you can share with your audience.
The Amazon Influencer and Associates programs have some key differences and similarities. Let’s dive into how these creator programs work.
What Is An Amazon Influencer?
An Amazon Influencer in the Amazon Influencer Program is a social media influencer who earns a commission for successfully referring customers to buy Amazon products. You'll promote your Amazon affiliate link to your audience and earn money online when your referral efforts result in a conversion.
According to Amazon, the Amazon Influencer Program is an extension of Amazon Associates, which is Amazon’s core affiliate program.
As an Amazon Influencer, you’ll get access to additional tools to help you promote and refer products to customers:
- An Amazon page and URL to showcase products
- An opportunity to join the Amazon offsite commissions program.
Here's an example:
How Does The Amazon Influencer Program Work?
Once you’re accepted into the Amazon Influencer program, you’ll follow these steps to set up your Amazon storefront:
- Build your storefront: Create a custom Amazon page or Amazon store, complete with a personalized URL.
- Create content: Use your influence to create content promoting Amazon products so customers buy.
- Earn commissions: Make money when your referrals are successful.
Amazon Influencers have multiple options available for creating content and promoting Amazon products:
- Hosting live streams as Amazon Live Influencers
- Creating shoppable videos and content.
What Is The Amazon Onsite Commissions Program?
The onsite commissions program is part of the Amazon Influencer program. Eligible creators can create shoppable content to upload to their Amazon storefront, which also appears in product review videos for that product on Amazon.
When customers click and watch your content and make a purchase, you earn a commission.
For example, imagine you film a product review video for a $100 steam mop, and for the month, the video is clicked and watched 1,000 times with 200 qualifying purchases. You'd earn 200 commissions!
Here's an example of shoppable videos:
What Is An Amazon Associate?
The Amazon Associates Program is Amazon’s core affiliate program. It’s open to creators and influencers to join to promote Amazon products and earn commissions on successful referrals.
You’ll get access to a dashboard where you can manage your referrals, a special link you'll use for each product recommendation, plus access to see analytics and stats on products referred, clicks, and commissions, along with link-building tools so you can easily direct customers to the products you refer.
How Does The Amazon Associates Program Work?
Amazon Associates is open to content creators, publishers, and influencers. It’s a chance to promote Amazon products and earn commissions on your successful referrals.
You can promote Amazon on your website or app, in an article or blog post.
Here's an example:
Associates get up to a 10% commission on product referrals from qualifying purchases and programs.
Amazon Influencer Vs Associates Program: Key Similarities And Differences
When looking at Amazon Influencer vs Associates, there are some key similarities and differences to note. To compare the two, we’ll look at the application process, features, and how payments work.
How To Apply
Both Amazon programs have a streamlined, easy application process that you can do online.
For the Amazon Influencer Program, visit this page to start your application. You’ll complete your online application and await a decision.
This is available to all influencers from social channels like TikTok, YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook. If you’re trying to qualify for the Amazon Influencer program with a Facebook or Instagram account, make sure it’s a business account.
Eligibility is based on several factors, like your number of followers and engagement rate.
For Amazon Associates, you can apply on this page. You’ll need a qualifying website or app, such as a personal blog, to be eligible to join the program.
- Complete an application to join
- Share your qualifying website or app within the application
- Get a decision
Successful applicants have a website or app with original content that doesn’t have obscene, sexual, or explicit material, promote violence, or contain false or deceptive material. You can read more about what’s not accepted here.
Once you’re approved as an Amazon Associate, you’ll have instant access to your dashboard, where you can get set up on the platform, create and access referral links, and more.
Read our guide on how to apply to Amazon Associates for a step-by-step walkthrough.
For a great blueprint on how to create a website for profitable affiliate marketing, check out the Affiliate Lab. You'll learn the know-how with full video walkthroughs, access a community of like-minded people, and even learn how to eventually sell your business.
Learn how Amazon Associates and the Amazon Influencer program work, guidelines, considerations, and more.
What are Amazon’s rules?
Following these guidelines, like Amazon attribution and other requirements, are super important. Failure to do so can result in being removed from Amazon Associates:
- Affiliate and site disclosure: Amazon affiliates must disclose their relationship with Amazon. This includes an affiliate disclosure on every page that has affiliate links and an overall site disclosure, which may say: “As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.”
- Link shortening: Amazon provides a link shortener to affiliates, and they don’t allow third-party link shorteners (like Pretty Links) to be used.
- Promotional methods not allowed: You can’t promote your affiliate links offline. You can’t promote in places like in books, emails, or DMs.
How much will you earn as an Amazon affiliate?
With either program, the sky’s the limit on your earnings. There are some affiliates that earn up to a full-time income with Amazon Associates and/or the Amazon Influencer Program through their Amazon product referrals!
For Amazon Associates and Amazon Influencers, commission rates go up to 10%.
Each product category's commission rate will vary, so a TV referral may have a different commission rate than a sewing machine referral, for example.
Payments are issued about two months after a customer buys. So, commissions from purchases made in January will be paid out in March. Payments are sent out once a month, and you’ll get a report via email in advance, sharing your eligible payment amount.
Which Pays More, Amazon Influencer Vs Associate?
They both pay the same! The commission rates are no different if you’re an Amazon Influencer or Amazon Associate, but are associates or influencers making more?
I personally think Amazon Influencers can earn more, though.
It’s more beginner-friendly, too. If you think about it, Amazon Influencers are using the power of Amazon’s platform to showcase content. You’re sharing your shoppable videos and content on the platform where Amazon buyers are already.
You don’t need to use SEO, paid advertising, and other traffic-building tactics to drive traffic to a website or app to attract customers. Customers are already on Amazon!
How Can You Make The Most Money As An Amazon Affiliate?
Increase your chances of making the most as an Amazon affiliate by joining both programs. They’re both free and by becoming an Amazon Associates and Amazon Influencer, you can really maximize your earning potential.
What is Creator University?
Creator University is Amazon’s guide for influencers and associates.
- Video tutorials
You can learn the basics of Amazon Associates and the Amazon Influencer program, complete your onboarding, get a better understanding of the do’s and don’ts, and more.
Discover how influencer storefronts work, how you can use creator tools to make the most money, and how to discover products and find deals, promotions, and bounties to share with your audience.
You can also get inspired by other Amazon Influencers and get examples of how creators promote Amazon successfully.
Final Word on Amazon Associates vs Influencer Programs
In all, both Amazon programs are a solid option for creators to explore to monetize their influence. If you’re on the fence about joining either program, just do it! There’s really nothing to lose.
You’re opening yourself up to a new income stream, and it’s risk-free to try your hand at promoting Amazon products. Create content tailored to your audience’s needs, recommend relevant Amazon products, and watch your commissions start rolling in.
Earning money from referrals doesn’t necessarily happen instantly or overnight. It will likely start small and then grow over time. Likewise, with both Amazon programs, it’s definitely a volume game. With commissions on the lower end, up to 10%, you’ll need to refer many products to earn a healthy side income.
Don't be disheartened, though. Amazon income can impact your earnings over time, and it’s an opportunity to earn passive income.
We just covered everything about the Amazon Influencer vs Associates programs. Does it make sense?
Which program(s) will you be starting with?