As you learn about affiliate marketing you will start to hear about cookie length and what it means to your ability to make an income.
What is meant by a “cookie” is a piece of tracking website code that is linked to their browser that links them to your site and the product banner or links they clicked on, so how long does an amazon affiliate cookie last?
The standard Amazon affiliate tracking cookie is a 24 hours long cookie. So any single checkout or purchase made will be credited to you at the agreed-upon rate. Amazon does offer a single product 90 days cookie which requires access to the API.
Since you now understand the normal cookie is a 24-hour cookie and is able to be credited to you with any click this may lead you to wonder why the 90-day cookie wouldn’t be commonly used.
This is tied to the need for the Amazon API and additional setup along with some limitations which could, in fact, lower your income.
Why Would You Choose a 24-Hour Cookie?
This is the standard cookie provided by your link when you generate it in the Amazon SiteStripe across the top of the Amazon site when you are signed in.
This is a 24-hour cookie that applies to everything that the customer has in their cart for a single checkout.
After this checkout occurs there is no more cookie value so if they buy something for $10 on the first checkout and then later $500 of items you will only get the commission on the $10 checkout as your cookie is invalidated after this.
This is why you really want to sell them on products with a higher gross cost to ensure you make a better commission should they purchase a single item only.
My typical aim is to ensure that if my post is targeting selling an item that it is a minimum of $50 and prefers to make it an item worth $100-$200.
When you start to climb above $200, unless the audience is super targeted on the item, you start to have the buyer guilt and think about making the purchase instead.
With each niche, this will have to be evaluated as each visitor will be different, and expected costs on a purchase will be different.
Gaining Access to the Amazon API
As I quickly mentioned above the 90-day cookie is only available via the API, which means you will more than likely need to purchase a plugin to help gain access.
The API itself isn’t available unless you are past the 3 initial sales and site reviews with Amazon.
Once you make it through the initial setup of your account you will be able to request Amazon API keys, these keys when you request you need to write them down somewhere safe as you can never see them again through their console.
Should you not write this key down you will need to delete the key and create a new one, while this may sound easy enough Amazon will typically take 48 hours to complete the setup of this new API meaning you can’t use the key and will be waiting.
Once you set this up and your API key is active you can then search for products and start building out your links to add to the cart.
Though to note Amazon changed the API key which needs you to have consistent sales to not lose access or have API access scaled back.
Why Would You Choose a 90-Day Cookie?
To manage your commissions well most website owners will instead focus on lower ticket items which people will feel they can make a purchase without overly thinking about the costs and whether the item is needed.
This is where the 90 day cookie through the API and “Add to Cart” are at their most powerful.
What you want to do is think about whether your visitor would make the purchase of the item in the next 24 hours, if not then you want to make the link an “add to cart” link and tell the visitor so they expect the behavior.
After this even if they delete the item, save it for later, or another move to get it out of their cart in the next 90 days if they purchase this item you get the commission.
This even takes precedence over another website’s 24-hour cookie for that item alone.
The main limitation and why you don’t want to add all items to the cart is that you only get credit for that item selling, nothing else in the cart will count for you.
Make sure you use this as a tool to help you make larger commissions on bigger ticket items, don’t cost yourself income by trying to convert them all into this as many high-income days will come via a shopping cart being full of items.
Unless you are a coder or have the resources to hire a coder to make a plugin or integration for you the next step is to purchase software that can grant you access to the API and the ability to convert a link to the “add to cart” link type.
Best WordPress Plugins For API Access With Tools
There is a wide range of quality options for the best amazon affiliate plugin as each has points where one is better than another option.
They each provide a vast array of tools that can get you results and wow your visitors with the nice and slick presentation of items in nice product showcases.
As you can see while it seems crazy to not select the longer cookie length it is in many uses very detrimental to getting you high volumes of sales.
The one way where you can use the 90-day cookie to your benefit is on very high ticket items where the visitor will more than likely think about the purchase for a longer time than one session.
In those cases the 90-day cookie can come in amazingly nice, a $3000 hot tub, for example, isn’t a splurge purchase online but should you get them to click and it an add-to-cart calls then if they add it back two months from now you could get that sweet commission.
Do take some time when you are building a review or buyer’s guide and think about the purchase and what the overall odds are on immediate purchase, if you feel it may not be purchased right away then jump on the 90-day cookie for that specific link.