I spent quite a bit of time last week working on my already published Homeschooling with Cozy Books posts in anticipation of adding a few dozen more books that I have in a pile on my desk next to me. My goal is to add simple and enjoyable learning idea suggestions to each post. I’m a big believer in the relaxed homeschooling approach that includes using lots of picture books when children are younger.
So just as I was picking up momentum, Amazon sends out an email to their affiliates earlier this week announcing that all of the image-based affiliate links are going away by the end of the year. So you need to change all of your links because they will all be broken in a few weeks.
They sent this out the week before Thanksgiving week.
Out of the blue.
You have got to be kidding me.
To show you what I mean, take a look at these posts. All of these little individual products will now be broken because Amazon will only be supporting linking text moving forward.
- From My Book Pile – Emilie Barnes Edition
- 100 Art Supplies For Creative Girls
- Which Children’s Bible Is Best For Your Child?
- 100 Wholesome Books For Girls And Tweens
- Baby Einstein Alphabooks & Board Book Sets
- 100+ Free Old-Fashioned Cozy Books for Kindle
That’s just a handful of them. I have many, many posts that have varying degrees of Amazon products inserted.
So now I have to decide what to do with the probably dozens and dozens of posts that are ruined or will be missing important information. Many to most of them can’t simply be changed over to lists of words hyperlinked. People want to see the image, not just a list of craft supplies.
On top of that, I’m not even sure it is worth it to take the time to replace all of the Emilie Barnes books (for example) with a list of linked titles. It might make more sense to just get rid of the links and list the books. It takes time to get the link for each one and Amazon has reduced their affiliate percentages so much it’s not even worth the time to add the links at this point.
If you haven’t been following the news, Amazon is eliminating employees DURING THE HOLIDAY SEASON. They are apparently getting rid of Alexa. They are losing tons of money on all the distribution centers they have built. I’ve heard so many people on blogs, websites, and YouTube say that their Amazon affiliate sales are down 50-75% this year. So if everyone’s affiliate sales are down, you can imagine how much Amazon itself is down. Now they are getting into cars?
So I’m at the point where I think it is better to just ditch all of the Amazon links on my website. I think they are moving away from affiliates and will be going all-in on their “Influencer” program. (I hate that term.) They want influencers to point followers to their individual storefronts ON Amazon (like this) rather than promoting products on the influencer’s own platform (website, TikTok, Instagram, etc.). I’m sure this gives way more control to Amazon. WHY would I do this on my website given what they are doing to affiliates now? I guess if you are dropping links on social media then that’s one thing. But not on a website where posts integrate affiliate links.
And this all messes with my plans on For the Love of Pansies. For example, the post I did about Pansy Puzzles for Pansy Lovers will no longer work. None of the pretty items in the sidebar will work. It’s such a shame because the site looks so lovely with all of the pansy images, but what’s the point? I’m glad I didn’t invest any more time in that website than I have to this point. I could find other affiliate programs with lots of pansy thing (like Etsy), but then it’s just setting myself up for more problems down the line with another platform and/or individual sellers.
So I took a few days to not do anything with anything here. I had a whole bunch of books about Thanksgiving and winter I wanted to add this week, but this development took the wind right out of my sails. I didn’t want to do anything in anger or haste. But I also didn’t want to keep adding new posts with links if I decide I’ve had enough of Amazon and it is better to start methodically deleting all of them.
No matter what I do, it will take many days of work at a minimum to simply undo what I have to do – find all the impacted posts and either unpublish them or radically change them.
There are some people whose situation is far worse than mine so I’m thankful mine is only this bad.
In the end, I don’t trust Amazon and so it is probably easier to simply get rid of it all. For the mere pittance they now pay out in affiliate sales, it’s just not worth it.
So that was part of my week.