For marketers, using Amazon’s affiliate program is the top choice. Its notoriety and pay rate is what makes it the best. Unfortunately, if you live in certain states, you won’t be able to take advantage of this. This is because of tax laws that exist that have made Amazon decide to remove their affiliate program. These states are Arkansas, Colorado, Rhode Island, Vermont, Maine, and Missouri.
What Can You Do If Your State Is Banned?
If you have the disadvantage of living in one of these states, there are still options for you to conduct your affiliate marketing business without interruption. One option is for you to use a different affiliate program. While Amazon is the best, there are several other programs that you can choose for your affiliate marketing. They will not be as cost effective as the Amazon program. However, you will continue to make somewhat of a profit.
Other Options For Affiliate Marketers
If you are so used to Amazon’s procedures and plans and don’t want to go with another affiliate program, you can always end your business. If you already have so much of your time invested with Amazon and are used to the money from their program, it might be a smarter option to close than find a different program to change over to. If you are like the many people who rely on Amazon affiliate programs as a huge part of their income, you might not have any other way because of financial reasons.
You don’t have to close your business, though. Think about how successful your website has been. This could be of value to someone else and result in you making money off of a sales transaction. You can provide proof that your website draws people in and has made you a profit. If you have no other way to bring in income, this might be better than simply closing your business and stopping your income completely.
Using A Middleman
Some companies are in place to help you continue your affiliate marketing. All you will need to do is pay them a fee. In turn, they would operate out of their state that would be legally able to use the Amazon affiliate program. This is great to use, as long as you can find someone long term.
There have been several of these companies in the past, but Amazon has become aware of them. Slowly, Amazon will boot them out of business. The reason Amazon does this is because if you use a middleman to use the Amazon affiliate program, those laws that prevent states from using the program will never be changed. Instead of protesting them, you are essentially going around them to continue your affiliate marketing.
Why Are States Banned From The Amazon Affiliate Program?
You might be asking why Amazon would ban their affiliate program from being used in those select states. The reason why they do this relates to taxes. When a state runs low on money, they start to discuss what they can tax in order to bring in profit. The items taxed need to be approved by the people residing there and with most things, it is not agreed upon because it takes money out of the resident’s pockets.
So, tax income that is made online is not a huge deal because most people are not making their money online. Affiliate marketers do not make up a large part of the state, so taxing them is normally approved. The state is making money and the majority will not be complaining about how they did it.
Taxing Online Sales
The way this is done is by calling the people who are making money from a company online sales nexus. They consider this as people who are working for the company, even though they are not in reality. They are being paid by the company, in this case, Amazon, so they write it off as the affiliate marketers as being entities of the company. The state presents it as the affiliate marketers selling products in their state, so the legislators of that state determine that they are in the right to add a tax to it.
Amazon bans the state from their affiliate program because of the money they lose for the upkeep of the records and the money that the taxes take from them. It is not a good decision to continue to lose more than they are gaining, so eventually, Amazon decides to ban the state. When Amazon takes the affiliate program from a state, they are in the hopes that the state will change the tax because without their affiliate program there it does not benefit the tax they have in place.
Affiliate marketers make their money online. Most of them use the Amazon affiliate program, but when your state begins to tax the affiliate programs, Amazon is forced to leave that state out in the cold. The benefits are not there once the state taxes marketers using their program.
It is not a truly ethical thing the state is doing, though. The affiliate marketers are not employees of Amazon; therefore the tax pertaining to the affiliate programs should not be in place. Amazon has no choice but to leave and the state almost has no choice in stopping the tax because it does not do any good once the leading affiliate program drops out of the state.
You should not be worried if you are an affiliate marketer and this happens in your state. There are so many other opportunities that can be explored to either continue affiliate marketing successfully or profit off of the website that has brought in that income. Your hard work on your affiliate website still has value even if you can’t continue to use Amazon’s affiliate program. There is always someone who will want to utilise the traffic that you have built around it.