Amazon Affiliates with established sites and international traffic may run into the problem of their visitors clicking on their product links, but then ending up purchasing the product off a different Amazon store. Is there a way around this to make sure they still get credited for the referral?
Amazon have a system specially designed to alleviate this problem. It is called Amazon Onelink and is designed to make sure affiliates get credit for referring a customer to their site, even if they end up purchasing something off a different store to the one which the affiliate initially referred them to.
Under Onelink there is a special piece of code you can embed into your blog or niche site which effectively lets Amazon know you have different Amazon Affiliate accounts and also if you have referred a customer to another store. This codes connects your affiliate IDs up and makes sure you get credit for referrals, regardless of the Amazon store the customer eventually buys from.
Fortunately, for bloggers who don’t want to be messing around with code, there is a simple free plugin which allows you to easily embed the code Amazon Onelink gives you into your site and then forget about it. See the video below from Alex at WP Eagle for a visual demonstration. We will also take you through the steps below.
Amazon Onelink is available to sign up for through the amazon.com (USA) store and the interlinking is available between the following eight Amazon stores:
It is not currently available for the Australia, India, Brazil, Mexico and China stores.
How to Set Up Amazon OneLink For Your Website
In order to set up Onelink, you firstly need to set up an Amazon Affiliates account in each of the stores from countries you would like to monetize traffic from. The process is very quick, free and easy and is pretty much the same across all Amazon stores. See our article for a detailed rundown of the process.
Once you have signed up, you need to make a note of all the different Affiliate IDs you have for each country’s program. You will need to enter these into the Onelink menus to set up the service. You can either stay logged in to each program and keep the tabs open or else note down all the IDs on a notepad.
You then need to follow the steps below to set up Onelink:
- Make a note of all your different affiliate IDs for the different stores.
- Log in to your amazon.com affiliates account. Click here to sign up if you haven’t already.
- Click on Tools on the top menu bar, then click on Onelink.
- On the menu that appears, click on Step 1 to link the accounts.
- Enter your individual store IDs in each of the drop down boxes and click Link Store.
- Go back to the Onelink page and click Step 2 to get the OneTag code. Keep this tab open.
- Move over to your WordPress Website and head to Plugins…Add New.
- Search for, Install and Activate the Insert Headers and Footers plugin, or click on the link and install and reupload the zip file to your website.
- Once Installed, head over to Settings and Insert Headers and Footers. Paste the OneTag code Amazon gave you into the Scripts in Footer box. Click Save.
Onelink is now set up! You should now get commission for any purchases made on any of the participating 8 stores, even if the customers buys from a different store to the one your link initially referred them to.
Why OneLink is Useful
Amazon Onelink is an excellent tool because it takes into account that online shoppers do like to shop around between the different Amazon stores to find the cheapest deal for them. This means they may end up moving over to a different Amazon store to the one your product link intially sent them to.
There are several reasons why online shoppers tend to do this. Here are some of the main ones:
- Product price of course – sometimes the same product is quite a bit cheaper between different Amazon stores and customers want to find the best deal.
- The exchange rate between currencies also has to be taken into account.
- Delivery cost and options also need to be factored in. Depending on where a person lives they may need to shop around to compare delivery prices and times and find a store that can deliver to their country and do so relatively quickly and cheaply.
- Product availability – not all products are available on all Amazon storefronts.
- Product compatibility may be an issue in rare cases – regional DVDs/DVD players, games consoles, electrical plugs and so on.
- Language – customers may want to go to a storefront that can be translated into their native language eg. Spanish.
In some cases, because of one or more of these factors, customers may even end up going to a different Amazon store even if one exists in their own country, simply because pricing and/or other options are better. eg. Someone in Canada may end up buying off Amazon.com, even though there is a Canadian store.
Of course this other Amazon storefront would not normally recognize the Tracking ID embedded in the link, because it belong to a different Amazon affiliates account. Onelink solves this problem by allowing some Amazon sites to recognize Tracking IDs from other Amazon Affiliates programs and make sure you still get credit for the referral.
Where OneLink Does Not Work
The Amazon Onelink tag cannot currently be applied to the following Amazon Affiliates programs:
With the exception of Australia though, these programs are very difficult to sign up for anyway unless you have a bank account in these countries. Restrictions on this may loosen in the future but for now these prorgams are very difficult to monetize anyway unless you live in the actual country.
The Australian program is easily accessible; click here to sign up. It cannot be connected to Onelink yet though. The India program is easy to sign up to but hard to withdraw commission from; see this article for a way you can monetize Indian traffic if you are willing to jump through some hoops. Brazil, Mexico and China are out of reach unless you have a bank account in the country.
Globalizing Product Links
The Onelink tool also has an option for you to globalize links more thoroughly by redirecting customers to close or matching products on their home storefront.
By default it is set to Close match, meaning if it can find at least a closely matching product on their storefront, it will redirect them to this product. You can change this to the stricter exact match setting if you want, meaning it will only redirect if it can find the exact same product.
This can be an excellent alternative to using a link globalizer plugin or service, which we have covered in another article. The Onelink service can take care of much of this for you, and can also update product links as they change. See this page by Amazon for more on the Onelink feature and this additional extra option to globalize links.
Be aware though that the alogrithm that the Onelink program uses to find matching products may not always find a close or matching product, even though one may exist on a certain store if you dig deep enough. There are so many millions of products across all the different stores, with different IDs, descriptions etc that close matches may sometimes be missed.
If you get a lot of international traffic and want more customizability with the way you globalize links, then you may be better off going for a paid service link Geniuslink, which offers you much more control in the way you configure links for each country, allowing you to manually insert your own products if you want. See our article on globalizing links for more on this service.
Using the Geniuslink service may be better for some affiliates for a number of reasons. Here are some of the more common ones:
- You need to globalize links for programs other than the Amazon Affiliates program.
- You want more customizability in the way you configure links for each country, manually selecting certain products for certain countries.
- You want to set up more complex linking structures like split or choice pages, where you give the user two or more products to choose from off one link.
- You want to redirect users by more detailed criteria like device, operating system, browser language and so on.
- You want one central place to track and manage all your links for all your different affiliate programs.