I've been doing affiliate marketing – successfully – for well over a decade. While I earn affiliate income from this website, I've made the bulk of my affiliate revenue from selling real users products and services – in multiple niches - that have nothing to do with the making money online niche. I've been nominated as Affiliate of the Year three times in the Affiliate Summit Pinnacle Awards – taking home the award in 2016. I've spent the last decade+ teaching people how to find success with affiliate marketing - based on my own experiences - as well as advocating for the industry as a whole. I'm often blunt and can sometimes be controversial, but I'm also 100% bullshit free.
This year two affiliate marketers based in California, Shawn Hogan and Brian Dunning, pleaded guilty to defrauding eBay of at least $20 million in a scheme involving a notorious affiliate marketing tactic known as “cookie stuffing.” According to court documents, Mr. Hogan operated a network in which affiliates exchanged links and banner ads to help drive traffic to each other’s sites. The sites also agreed to host ads controlled by Mr. Hogan’s company, but in reality, these ads were cookie-stuffing devices. Users who viewed the ads had a small tracking code, or cookie, dropped on their computer. If those users went on to make a purchase from eBay, the cookie signaled that Mr. Hogan’s company was responsible — and eBay paid a commission.

As of March 1st, that standard will be replaced with a new category-by-category system. That means affiliates selling products in certain favored categories will get higher rates, including “digital video games” and “luxury beauty,” while most products see a steep drop-off. Amazon says the changes were made to simplify the system and that most associates will come out ahead, although it’s unclear how to square those predictions with the falling rates.
Great article! I need to go back to your post many more times for it to properly go in and for me to understand. Sorry if my question is a strange one. I am quite new to the whole concept of amazon affiliate marketing. When we are advertising their products, do we spend any money ourselves? Or we are just middle wares advertising their product? In what case, we have to have inventory? Can we sell products in Amazon?
Most affiliate partnerships assign an account manager. Your account manager might tell you when there are specials or new products to promote. But it is crucial that you speak to them regularly and get on their best side, because they can increase your commission if you are sending great traffic. They could also give you an exclusivity deal and bump up your pay more.
If you don’t promote the right products, even if you know the owner or think it might be a great fit, you run the risk of losing the trust you have built with your audience. It takes hard work to build authority and trust, and one bad affiliate offer could potentially ruin that, so be sure you trust the product you’re recommending, and the team behind the product to take care of your people.
You represent and warrant that: (i) you have all sufficient rights and permissions to participate in the Affiliate Program and to provision HubSpot with Affiliate Lead’s for our use in sales and marketing efforts or as otherwise set forth in this Agreement, (ii) your participation in this Affiliate Program will not conflict with any of your existing agreements or arrangements; and (iii) you own or have sufficient rights to use and to grant to us our right to use the Affiliate Marks.
9.4 GenealogyBank.com will endeavor to do its best to ensure accurate tracking of referrals made by all affiliates. All affiliates will themselves be solely responsible for ensuring that their URLs are formatted properly, a necessary prerequisite for accurate tracking of referrals. Notwithstanding the above statement of responsibility by GenealogyBank.com to track referrals, you hereby acknowledge and accept that the tracking system employed by GenealogyBank.com is not 100% fail-safe and that there may on occasion be instances of referrals made that are not credited to you for any of the following reasons:

20.3 Endorsements: Every endorsement, including testimonial, published by Affiliate regarding us or any of our products or services must be truthful, substantiated, and be neither deceptive nor unfair, as required by the Federal Trade Commission’s Guides Concerning Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (16 Code of Federal Regulations Part 255) as now or hereafter amended. An endorsement is an advertising message that your readers are likely to believe reflects any opinion, belief, finding or experience of Affiliate and/or any other individual, expert, or organization other than us, even if those views are identical to ours. If Affiliate is then publishing a banner ad that advertises us, no further notice of the material connection between Affiliate and us is required. If Affiliate is not then publishing such banner ad, and publishes any endorsement of us or any of our products or services, Affiliate must publish notice to your readers that Affiliate may receive compensation from us. Affiliate must promptly notify us each time Affiliate is going to publish, or is publishing, an endorsement regarding us or any of our products or services. If we believe any endorsement does not comply with the FTC Guides, we reserve the right to require Affiliate to promptly bring the endorsement into compliance with the FTC Guides or immediately delete the endorsement(s). If Affiliate violates this provision Affiliate shall thereby forfeit any commissions earned from us and shall return all such commissions to us
All things considered, you could realistically see prices going up across the board for all items, unless some sellers deem they can partially eat the cost of tax hikes to maintain a competitive price edge in their particular space. Then there is Walmart going after Amazon’s ecommerce space market share, including and especially their Prime market. That also will affect the value of Amazon FBA businesses, just as Amazon’s rise affected to value of eBay businesses in many sectors.
19.4 Affiliate agrees not to use any technique or marketing program that might reasonably be considered "predatory" or manipulative. GenealogyBank.com reserves the right to determine whether a technique or program is unreasonable. In the event of a breach of this Agreement by Affiliate and/or a third party or licensee, GenealogyBank.com shall immediately terminate this agreement, and, in addition to all other remedies available to it, GenealogyBank.com shall have the right to refuse to make payments to an Affiliate as a result of the Affiliate's efforts promoting GenealogyBank.com in such a manner. 
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