For a newcomer, many aspects of internet marketing are mysterious. How to make money with AdWords? What is search engine optimization, is it a WordPress plugin? What’s the difference between affiliate marketing and article marketing?

A combination of these questions and more crossed my head in the journey to understanding Internet marketing. I wrapped my head around most of them now, but one area of Internet marketing didn’t make much sense to me until very recently: Amazon Associate marketing.

Amazon Associates program pays a tiny commission compared to other affiliate programs. How does anyone make anything worthwhile with this? Why even bother? Not only that, but you can actually read discussions online about how worthless Amazon Associate program is.

This was my attitude toward Amazon Associates program until one day — for some reason — I decided to give it a try. I’m not talking about putting a link in the end of my blog post or a widget in the sidebar. I think people who do this are the ones complaining about Amazon associates program.

I built an Amazon store.

How does an Amazon store make money, you say?

What do you mean? It just makes loads of money–why do you need to know how?

Just kidding–that’s not really my answer and I hate answers like this. Knowing how it makes money and knowing what value it contributes to the web is important. Without this knowledge you will be imitating others who may not be doing the good and profitable thing.

There are two popular types of Amazon stores:

  • the community store
  • the niche store

Amazon store on a community site

If you have a website with a passionate community about Chihuahuas, or a certain gadget, or any hobby, you can add an Amazon store to it. The store helps in two ways. If it is search engine optimized, it will bring additional traffic and exposure to your community website. At the same time, your loyal community will find value in the related products that you display in your Amazon store.

Amazon store catering to micro-niche topics

You can create a micro-niche Amazon store even if you don’t have a community website–and Amazon.com and the people of the web will appreciate it when you do this. Basically, what you’re doing is helping Amazon categorize and group their products in a way that caters to eccentric niches.

For example, Amazon.com does not have a “robotics kit” category for people whose hobby is building robots. Someone who understands this can create a niche store to collect all the relevant products from Amazon’s selection and list them in categories that enthusiasts understand. A search engine optimized niche store like this will be useful and will get significant traffic.

Why Amazon niche store is a worthwhile affiliate tactic

Now back to the question of profitability–can Amazon Associate program be profitable?

Yes. However, the focused nature of the store means that only a certain small group of people will be interested in it. The amount of money you make from a single store probably won’t make you rich. You will have to build a second and third store.

The good news is that building a search engine optimized Amazon Associate store is easy if you use the right tools. For example, with WordPress and the right plugins and some practice, you can build an Amazon store in a few minutes–literally.

So, go ahead–explore this affiliate marketing territory. You may like it more than other niches. Remember that Amazon is a trusted brand. By associating with them, you won’t have to do any hard selling. And whether your users purchase the products you recommend or purchase other products, Amazon will still credit you for the sale!

Guest Blog Post By: Areej is the coauthor of WinkPress.com–a web resource about leveraging WordPress and its tools for online publishing. She enjoys anime and dreams of becoming a pianist.