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What To Do With Amazon Earning Hub? Move Them to Wizzley
Hubpages Is Changing The Rules - Again
Unless you are living under a rock - or don't really care about earning money on hubpages - you should be aware that come 1 January 2012 HubPages will not allow you to use your own Amazon affiliate link.
Instead Amazon earnings are set to roll into the HPAds program.
I have one account which is all about making money from Amazon on Hubpages. I'm removing it and moving it to Wizzley - here's why.
- HubPages FAQ - Amazon Earnings
Clearly states that if you want to earn anything from Amazon after 1 Jan 2012 you will need to enrol and earn through the HPAds system.
Why Using My Own Affiliate ID for Amazon is Important
Now I am far from an Amazon affiliate marketing star - but I certainly make a $100 payout from Amazon most months. I suspect some of you are in the same boat.
As of today (the 26th of the month) - I am earning 6.5% on all sales (except for electronics which only pays out $25 capped). Most months I make the 6.5% (31 to 100 items shipped) tier, and really no one but a beginner should be stuck on 4% (1-6 items shipped) - just give your link to your friends and tell them to go shopping!
There are three main reasons that making money from, and being paid by Amazon, is important for me, and I think you to:
- All of my Amazon sales combined over all my sites plus my percentage on Hubpages are summed to create my tier commission;
- Its a simple and transparent system which does not involve being paid by a third party (Hubpages) who then has access to all my sales data and through whom my income flows.
- I get paid by check not via Paypal;
Amazon Tier Commissions
In the forums Hubpages management has made a big deal about being able to offer a higher (I assume 8.5%) percentage commission, to hubber compared to 4%. Well I do not make ALL my Amazon sales from HubPages - I have several of my own sites which also make Amazon sales.
So although in theory my sales ratio will go from 6.5% (which it is most months) to 8.5% - it will knock some of my actual sales down a tier from my own sites.
HubPages is a No Longer a Transparent Revenue System
One of the reasons I not only joined Hubpages three years ago, but also signed up many others to HubPages - was because I thought their revenue model was very clear and transparent. Hubpages didn't take your money and redistribute it (as Squidoo does) - instead they shared the clicks on your Adsense/eBay/Amazon modules - and for Amazon you got every sale that click generated.
Unfortunately this is now not the case. Amazon holds my money for 60 days, to allow for returns. I sleep well at night knowing that - because I don't expect Amazon to go anywhere, or file for bankruptcy. Google (the owners of Adsense) - ditto.
Hubpages hmm - a small privately held company that I have no idea how close, or otherwise, they are to the edge. After the behavour of the staff in the forums since the first Panda update - I don't trust Hubpages with my money anymore.
At the time of writing its unclear whether you will still be paid under the usual Amazon system:
Paid for not just the item the buyer clicked through on, but also credited with anything else they bought on Amazon in the next 24 hours.
This is the single most powerful thing about the Amazon affiliate system. I regularly get commissions on cookware - but I don't promote cookware. I've had commission on items that I didn't know existed, and items that I didn't know Amazon sold.
My strong suspicion - because of the silence by management on this topic - is that going forward - you will only be paid on what you sell directly from a hub - I bet HubPages will get the "unrelated sales" - you read it here first!
Sales Data is Gold
The other issue I have is that once HubPages is the intermediatory between writers and Amazon - they have all the access to your sales data, and you have very little. Ask any experienced and successful marketer what their key to success is: sales data.
Paypal is Not a Bank!
Paypal is a necessary evil in this line of work. Most of the major affiliate I work with pay me via Paypal - I have several thousand dollars worth of income run through Paypal each month.
An they make a lot of money from me. Because I live in New Zealand they will ONLY let me with withdrawal money to a NZ$ account in NZ. I can't withdraw money to a local US$ account - why not? Because Paypal makes an awful lot of money from exchange rate fees - which are appalling.
Yes I could leave my money in my Paypal account in US$ - and I leave some for expenses I have in my business most of which are in US$ too.
But I don't leave anything more than a few hundred float in Paypal - because there are far too many stories about people loosing access to their Paypal accounts for some perceived problem. Some of those people never get their accounts back, others loose access to their accounts for months.
Paypal is not a bank and is not subject to consumer protection laws such as the NZ Banking Ombudsman.
So leaving money in Paypal is foolhardy as well.
Amazon pays my by check (as I'm not in the US) - I can have the check sent at anytime - because I can put a hold on my account and let the money accumulate with them for a few months if I want to.
I can also hold the check without cashing it for several months at my end - so I can choose to exchange when the rate is in my favour.
Moving My Hubs to Wizzley
I wanted to move my hubs. The question was where to? The obvious answers in terms of sites which appeared well run and to have some longevity were:
I've used both of them, Squidoo I discounted because they also don't have a clear revenue sharing model. InfoBarrel I've used for a while - but their conversions are very poor and they don't have a good Amazon module.
Then I heard about a new kid on the block: Wizzley - only opened up to the public mid-2011 - and developed post Panda - i.e. after Google slapped some sites it suspected were content farms such as HubPages.
Moving my hubs to Wizzley is not ideal.
Some of my hubs really should be on their own sites - they make good money - but I don't have time to do everything I want to do before the end of the year plus set up a number of niche sites.
Wizzley is a nice alternative. If it works out - I will build niche sites and use Wizzley for backlinks (and revenue).
Wizzley basically provides me all that I've lost at HubPages:
- use of my own Amazon ID;
- instant indexing of articles (my first article was indexed with an hour of approval);
- allowed to use "prohibited links" to affiliate sites that HubPages no longer allows (but did when I created the hubs);
- nice friendly management, who also exercise editorial control, so the site is not flooded with rubbish.
Please note that you Wizzley does NOT accept duplicate content - so you will need to unpublish your hubs and wait for them to be deindexed before you can move them to Wizzley