All About Links

When I'm formatting for clients, or collecting links to share in the League of Utah Writers newsletter (I'm the NL chair) I often see what I think of as "messy" links. There are many reasons for having nice, clean links—not the least of which is the ease of sharing—so let's me show you how it's done!


Clean Links vs. Messy Ones

Someone requests a link to your book, so you go to Amazon, search up your book, and get a link. It looks like this:

https://www.amazon.com/First-Kisses-Suck-Minnie-Vampire-ebook/dp/B07GVNBWRB/ref=sr_1_1?crid=T0UK8JYL0OC8&dchild=1&keywords=first+kisses+suck&qid=1603509763&sprefix=first+kisses%2Caps%2C199&sr=8-1

Whew! Quite the mess, eh? But most of us pick up this link and use it like it's the Cat's meow.


However, we can clean it all up neat as a pin.

Remove everything starting from "ref" and through the end (indicated in bold): https://www.amazon.com/First-Kisses-Suck-Minnie-Vampire-ebook/dp/B07GVNBWRB/ref=sr_1_1?crid=T0UK8JYL0OC8&dchild=1&keywords=first+kisses+suck&qid=1603509763&sprefix=first+kisses%2Caps%2C199&sr=8-1

  1. Next, remove the name of your book, including the -ebook, like this: https://www.amazon.com/First-Kisses-Suck-Minnie-Vampire-ebook/dp/B07GVNBWRB/

  2. Your final link should look like this: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07GVNBWRB/

  3. Alternatively, you can go to your KDP dashboard, and click on the link that says "View on Amazon." That will also give you your pretty, short link.

See how much easier that last, clean link is? So much easier to handle.


But Wait! There's More!

You can create affiliate links for your Amazon books that are even cleaner and they have the potential to earn you some extra money!


A word about Amazon Affiliate links: It doesn't cost you anything to be an Amazon Affiliate, and it's not scamming the system to use them. Amazon offers this service as a way to encourage retailers to push business to them. In exchange, they give you a tiny percentage, like a finders-fee, of the total amount the customer spends. If a customer clicks on your affiliate link, and they buy nothing, you earn nothing but it cost you nothing, so there's no loss, either. However, if a customer clicks on your affiliate link and they decide to do some Christmas shopping while they're there, you have the potential of making a few bucks.


Do not get greedy! If you shop via your own affiliate link, and the Great and Powerful Zon discovers your treachery, doom shall fall upon your head. You have been warned.

Here's your clean link vs. an Amazon Affiliate link:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07GVNBWRB/

OR

https://amzn.to/2Hx3XeQ

Isn't that lovely? AND it makes you moneys!


Here's how to do it!

  1. Go to https://affiliate-program.amazon.com/home and create an account. (Your Amazon account will do, but you need to set it up here, as well.)

  2. Enter the ASIN/ISBN or name of your book in the designated box, and click GO.

  3. Find your book among the options presented, then click on the tiny drop-down arrow beside the GET LINK button

  4. You'll get a pop-up box that will show you another messy link! But choose Shorten URL with with amzn.to?

  5. And your clean money-making link has been created.

  6. Watch the video below to see how it's done.

One last thing—you can use affiliate links for anything you mention on your website or newsletter (or anywhere you use links, really), so if you're promoting another author, for instance, you can share their book using an affiliate link you've created.


Hope this helps you out! As always, feel free to ask any questions you might have.