The Digital Reader’s been studying Amazon’s new rules for Amazon affiliates promoting free ebooks, and says that Amazon may have killed “free ebook” promotions:
According to the new 80-20 rule (my name for it), Amazon affiliates will be penalized in any month that one, their affiliate ID shows up on more than 20 thousand free Kindle ebook purchases, and two, the total number of paid Kindle ebooks account for less than one in five purchases. If an Amazon affiliate canâ€™t comply with the rule, they will lose their income for the month.
It seems that the free ebook promotions are costing Amazon money, and affiliates will somehow need to police their own promotions. As the article rightly points out, affiliates can’t control what happens when someone clicks a link and goes to Amazon.
Free ebooks are too popular
Amazon’s in business to make money, and ebook authors use free promotions because they work.
This is a hard ruling for affiliates to obey — indeed, I can’t see any way in which can be sure that they won’t fall foul of the new rules.
Since affiliates stand to lose their commissions, they’ll need to restrict themselves to promoting “paying” ebooks, but they still can’t control what their customers do when they get to Amazon.
This means that authors can’t rely on the “free ebook downloads” sites to do their promotions, they’ll need to do their own.
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