I have another quick announcement. We are retiring the option to use keywords in Amazon Capsules. Starting later today, you will have to choose a specific product to display going forward when you add an Amazon Capsule to new articles.
We are offering a 30 day grace period for articles with existing keyword-selected products. We recommend taking a look at those articles and editing your product capsules to ensure that each contains the ASIN or Amazon product URL for the specific item you want to offer for sale. Once the grace period is up, Amazon Capsules will automatically display whatever product is currently showing up from the keyword search. Please let us know if you have any questions!
What's the purpose of this besides creating even more things we have to go and revamp?
We have found that using keywords to display products almost always results in those products not conforming to our current standards for inclusion, which results in them being snipped or the articles being moderated. Basically we don't want to provide authors with options that make articles worse rather than better.
I think keyword products placed there always lead to Amazon URL products only. Then, how can there be any non-amazon product included there in that capsule?
It's not that they are non-Amazon products. It's that they are the wrong products.
Using Amazon capsules correctly means being aware of what product you are offering and why, and then going back and checking periodically to make sure it all still makes sense.
This is hard enough when you are hand-selecting products. With the keyword thing it was way too easy for it to go off the rails.
Good move by HP in my opinion.
I'm wondering if editors and curators have taken this into consideration when moving Hubs to niche sites. Are there many Hubs on niche sites using keywords for their Amazon capsules?
It's not non-Amazon products that they're talking about. It's products that are unrelated to the topic of the Hub.
Amazon is completely useless at moderating products attributed to certain categories (i.e. proxy for keywords) and consequently there are all sorts of irrelevant products which can appear using the "suggest" facility.
I've always used very precise products that I know about and Amazon IMO works much better as a result as you know the product is ALWAYS related to the content.
Is there not a way that the team can come up with software that will tell writers which articles have key word ads on them? In the beginning I used them often, but don't think I have many now. However, sorting through 115 articles to find the is going to be a lot of work. How about some help!
This one I'm not going to miss. I've always preferred to pick my own specific products.
The problem with this is that if the product you have selected suddenly is no longer available you are left with a blank and there is no way to know that this product is no longer on Amazon (or you just can't buy it any more) unless you go through your hubs at regular intervals to check that all your products are still there.
I agree, this is problematic. I could see if they want to do this for new hubs going forward, but to do it to all seems like a big hassle.
But as Christy says, the product that shows at the end of the grace period would be shown permanently on the hub. If you were happy choosing keywords this should not really be a problem since it was the same product that was showing up anyway.
Yes but that would have the same problem - what if that product was no longer sold. You would still have to go to the hub and check on it periodically.
That's how it's supposed to be if you are suggesting a product. Look at Will's reply above.
I think it depends on how specific your keyword is and how many products there are for that keyword so maybe it works for some situations and not others. In some cases where there are a lot of products then I would rather put a keyword in in case one specific product becomes unavailable.
When a link stops working, even an amazon link, you will get a broken-link notice. You an then fix things in the affected hub.
I never chose an Amazon product by keywords. If I was writing an article about a book review, I would offer an Amazon capsule with that book. Or if I wrote an astrology article about how Venus affects your horoscope, I would use a book which explains more about how Venus affects each astrology sign in the zodiac. Is that still OK?
I seldom use Amazon capsules because it's too much hassle and I never made a payout. Books are mostly related if someone wants more info on my topics, and they don't add up to much money.
I rewrote my bio today. I wonder what I have to change on 155 hubs tomorrow? I think the staff should think through these changes longer before forcing us to keep revisiting the same hubs numerous times. I was told to use callout capsules, or the staff actually added them to many of my hubs. I still haven't taken
them all off.
I realize the administration is striving for excellence. But because we spend so much time going over and over the same older articles and it's so time consuming, we have no time to write new material. So if you look at any niche, many of the articles on it are 5 or 6 years old. It won't matter if the author writes evergreen, but could hurt the niches as a whole. People want to read about what's happening now.
It will get rid of absolutely ridiculous products on hubs.
A couple I have seen:
Apple TV on 'Apple Pie Recipe' hubs
Stuffed pandas on 'What is Google Panda?' type hubs
It was one of the most misused features on the site.
I don't understand how anybody writing about apple pie recipe can put that Apple TV there.
No one put it there. It is what happens with the keyword option of the Amazon capsule. This is one of the small reasons they are being discontinued.
I didn't know this fact that it changes automatically. Now, I should look at all of them.
It does not change if you selected a specific product. It does change if you used a keyword instead.
I went to bed after posting my above comment. So, sorry for being late here to acknowledge your answer.
I generally search the product with keyword and add it if it suits my topic, otherwise not. But, now as per your post, it seems that if the Amazon product goes out of stock, they can put some other product there according to the keyword even if it does not relate to my topic. Is it so?
Yes, that is the case. If you have used keywords and the product becomes unavailable, Amazon will replace it with a different product, sometimes one that is not appropriate, depending on how specific your keywords were.
As Christy said, they will not change if you selected a specific product by ASIN or url. But what can happen is the product will no longer show up if it is not available.
When you use a keyword you aren't selecting a product. Instead of entering the ASIN or url for the product, you enter words you think will display the correct product. If you haven't done this you have nothing to worry about.
The upside is, by using a keyword something will always show up. If one product sells out or is no longer available, something else will take its place.
The downside - which greatly outweighs the upside - is you can end up with some pretty goofy matches. As Will said, Apple TV on an apple pie recipe. That's not good.
None of this matters now, since we won't be able to do it anymore anyway.
Agreed - I could never ever see the point of them.
I've always been very specific in my use of products on Amazon. I'd hate to think of things popping up on a hub which I didn't know about.
This update is one of the only changes that makes a great deal of sense. How can you promote personally a product that you don't even know is going to show up? Specific products are the way to go and always have been!
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