Can I link to Amazon AND other online stores on the same pages?

One of our more frequently asked questions that we get from people who are interested in purchasing AmaLinks Pro has to do with whether or not the plugin is able to link to websites other than Amazon within some of our features. Specifically – people want to know whether they can link our CTA buttons to other websites or whether they can add links to other websites in our product comparison tables.

At the time I am writing this post – No – AmaLinks Pro is an Amazon affiliate WordPress plugin only and it can only be used to create links to products on Amazon. But this brings up a much bigger and more important issue that a lot of people seem to be unaware of!

Can I use Amazon content (images, product data, etc.) to promote products on other sites?

Here is an exact question that we got from Marcel, an AmaLinks Pro user…

If you are using your plugin (or any similar one that uses the API) to pull in images, can you link to websites other than Amazon under the product image for price comparison?

I see this often on sites, a product image pulled in from Amazon with two or more CTAs underneath (i.e. one to check price on Amazon and a second button to compare price on another site)

But this part of the operating policy is what confuses me:
——-
https://affiliate-program.amazon.com/help/operating/policies

Content on your Site
(z) You will not display on your Site, or otherwise use, any Program Content to advertise or promote any products that are offered on any site that is not an Amazon Site (e.g., products offered by other retailers).
——-
The image itself is linking to Amazon and I link a CTA to Amazon but another CTA underneath links to a second site…is that a violation of using their “Program Content” since I’m using the API to pull in the image but “promoting” another retailer?

And here is my response to him…

Good question Marcel! This is something I’ve never really paid attention to because I never link to other retailers on the same page that I promote Amazon products.

That policy doesn’t look confusing at all to me. It looks very clear. You absolutely cannot use any of Amazon’s ‘Program Content’ to promote products for other retailers. I would say that this absolutely includes doing a price comparison – as you described. I think it would be totally fine to do price comparisons – as long as you aren’t using anything from the Amazon API on that page or as part of that comparison.

I’m sure people get away with doing this all the time. But if you want to go 100% by Amazon’s rules to avoid the risk of getting banned – I would steer clear from promoting products on other sites on the same pages where you use Amazon API data to promote Amazon products.

If you choose to do price comparisons on your site

The Amazon Associates operating agreement and policies pages are notoriously confusing and even seem contradictory at times. To further add to the confusion – I also found this buried deep in one of their policy pages.

In addition, if you choose to display prices for any Product on your Site in any “comparison” format (including through the use of any price-comparison tool or engine) together with prices for the same or similar products offered through any web site or other means other than an Amazon Site, you must display both the lowest “new” price and, if we provide it to you, the lowest “used” price at which the Product is available on the Amazon Site.

In other words – you CAN do price comparisons with products on other sites – but Amazon makes it even more difficult for you to do so by adding the requirement that you MUST provide the lowest “new” price AND the lowest “used” price.

Keep in mind though – that this doesn’t null the previous rule listed above. If you do price comparisons with products on other sites – you still cannot use any of Amazons ‘Program Content’ (like images) on the pages that are linking to other retailers.

My chat with an Amazon Rep

April 19, 2020 7:01:45 AM Ariel (CSA) : Hello, my name is Ariel. I’m here to help you today.

April 19, 2020 7:02:20 AM Matthew A : Hello. Are you an expert on interpreting Amazon’s complex Operating Policies for Amazon Associates?

April 19, 2020 7:02:35 AM Matthew A : Specifically – I’m referring to this rule…

Content on your Site
(z) You will not display on your Site, or otherwise use, any Program Content to advertise or promote any products that are offered on any site that is not an Amazon Site (e.g., products offered by other retailers).

April 19, 2020 7:03:44 AM Matthew A : I’m wondering – as an Amazon Associate – can I use content from Amazon (like an image) and link to more than one retailer.

For example… can I place an image on a page and then give my readers the option to click over to Amazon OR another retailer.

April 19, 2020 7:04:38 AM Ariel (CSA) : Not if you received that image from Amazon. You must also disclose on your site where you received that image.

April 19, 2020 7:05:23 AM Matthew A : Okay. So, to be clear. IF I use Amazon content (like an image) – I can ONLY link to Amazon for that product. Right?

April 19, 2020 7:05:45 AM Ariel (CSA) : Yes.

April 19, 2020 7:05:56 AM Matthew A : I can not give my readers a choice – even if Amazon is the top choice?

April 19, 2020 7:06:06 AM Ariel (CSA) : Correct

April 19, 2020 7:06:32 AM Matthew A : Okay. That is all I needed today. Thank you very much.

April 19, 2020 7:06:41 AM Ariel (CSA) : You’re most welcome

So, should I publish pages that link to Amazon AND other retailers?

Well… lots of sites do this and they seemingly get away with it. But, for how long? Lots of sites violate a bunch of other policies set forth in the Amazon Associates operating agreement and policy documents and seem to get away with it as well.

Personally – I would not even take the risk. If I wanted to promote the same product from multiple retailers in addition to Amazon… I would include ALL links to Amazon within the main product review (because AmaLinks Pro has so many great options to create unique link styles!) then include a button or a text link somewhere near the bottom linking to a DIFFERENT page that has buying options for that product from other retailers. I would make sure that different page opens in a new window so that readers can easily refer back to the review article if they want to.

If you do choose to publish content that links to both Amazon and other retailers and you want to stay safe – be sure that you are not using any of Amazon’s ‘Program Content’ anywhere on that page if you want to stay 100% safe. The most obvious violation would be using a product image pulled from the Amazon API and then linking to a different retailer. Don’t do that!

As long as you aren’t using any of Amazon’s ‘Program Content’ – you should be totally safe to link to both Amazon and other retailers.

 

Check Out AmaLinks Pro

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I link to other retailers sites from one page if I am using Amazon API content on different pages on my website?

Yes! This is perfectly okay, the way I interpret the rule. You CAN promote a certain product using Amazon content on one page – and promote that exact same product on a different page using a different retailer. Just make sure to not use the Amazon content at all on the page that is linking to the other retailer.

Amazon simply does not want you using their content, like images, to promote affiliate products on other sites. So, for example, you cannot do a price comparison IF you are using any Amazon content at all. You cannot place an image from the Amazon API and then give your readers two options to purchase that item (Amazon and another retailer). You CAN do a price comparison like this only if you do not use any Amazon content.

Can I promote non-Amazon sites on a page with Amazon API content, as long as I do not use anything from the Amazon API  (like images or pricing data) where I list products on other sites?

Yes! This scenario seems to be allowed within the rules as well. For example… you can promote product A on your page using Amazon content and link to Amazon and also promote product B (a totally different product) with another retailer. There is nothing wrong with this at all – as long as no content anywhere on the page that has anything to do with product B is considered ‘Amazon content’.

Does this mean placing ads on pages with Amazon content goes against the policy? The ad could be promoting another online store.

Great question! This is something that I did not think of when I initially wrote this post. Placing ANY ads on sites that use Amazon content is not disallowed, according to this rule. BUT… if an ad is displayed that promotes the exact same product that you are promoting using Amazon content and that ad leads to a retailer other than Amazon – then, YES, I would say that this would violate this rule.

For example… say you use Amazon content to promote a certain product on a page. You put Google Adsense or Ezoic ads on that same page and you have no idea what ads might get displayed. IF they promote any of the exact same products that you use Amazon content to promote on that same page and the ad leads to a retailer other than Amazon – then you would be in violation of this rule.

For this reason, and others – I would NOT use display ads on pages where I am using Amazon content to promote products as an Amazon affiliate.

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1 thought on “Can I link to Amazon AND other online stores on the same pages?”

  1. I just bought Amalinks Pro. I lost my access to the API last year. I had eye surgery and couldn’t update my site. I am glad I found your wonderful product. I plan on using it with Thrive Architect. I feel you have a very Superior product. And if anyone wants to be successful with Amazon and affiliate marketing they should use you’re fine product.
    Billy Roberts
    Ps. Great documentation on using Amalinks Pro.

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