Blogger (Google) and Amazon it seems have collaborated and introduced a way for people using Blogger to monetize their blogs using Amazon.
I wonder if Google is making some money as a 2-tier affilaite referring so many affiliates to Amazon
Anyway the implementation is broken for average users
This is what the interface looks like
Seems very simple
- You search for something
- Click buttons
- Code is inserted into your post
An average blogger blogspot user will see
This as a nice text link
This as a nice image link
This as a nice text with image
Update: it doesn’t get stripped out the same way with WordPress but leaving it “broken” here anyway (in the feed)
If your readers are reading from an RSS Feed that nice text with image gets stripped out, and the same would be true of emails created from an RSS feed.
This is the code they currently insert
<iframe src="http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=freeadver0cef-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B0015T963C&fc1=000000&IS2=1<1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr" style="align:left;padding-top:5px;width:131px;height:245px;padding-right:10px;" align="left" scrolling="no" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" frameborder="0"></iframe>
Which is meant to appear like this
Blogger & Amazon should really get rid of the link+image option, or code it in such a way that something appears in the RSS feeds, even if it is just a link back to the permalink of the post to suggest clicking through – better would be a dynamic image which Google certainly know how to create for Adsense for Feeds.
At a minimum tell bloggers that it won’t appear in feeds and they might need to include alternatives of their own.
If you see someone using this code on Blogger / Blogspot, warn them about this as it might be costing them revenue
You can link to this post with the following code
<a href="http://andybeard.eu/2609/amazon-blogger.html">Warning: Amazon Blogger Integration Broken</a>
Update: hopefully code fixed in my RSS feed
I have just received this comment from Rick Klau formerly of Feedbirner and now Program Manager for Blogger
Andy – you make a valid point, namely that if a large number of your readers read via feeds, then the iframe will not render in the feed reader. But “broken”? This is how Amazon’s Associates program has worked from day 1. That is, these are the same options an Associate has had from Amazon directly for incorporating Amazon links into their content. And it’s not at all hard for the blogger to insert a link (or image) independently of the iframe so that it will show in the feed.
I have major problems with this logic
For years it was known that you couldn’t include Adsense within the body of blog posts unless it was limited to only display on a blog, and not within a feed. WordPress has lots of special plugins for inserting Adsense code specifically to address this problem.
On Blogspot you don’t have that option with Adsense, you have 2 options for Adsense
- Within template areas, which can include at the top or bottom of a post, but not within the actual content, in the sidebar etc
- Special Adsense for feeds via Feedburner which is image based, as was Feedburners own feed monetization platform before it was purchased by Google 2 years ago.
A button to insert Adsense within post content would be broken functionality, but in some ways the Amazon integration is worse.
Adsense is never the focal point of a blog post, in fact you are not allowed to encourage people to click Adsense.
If someone was writing a book review, they would want to include an image and/or link to Amazon to hopefully make some money. If they chose the link+picture option, anyone reading from a shared review isn’t going to even see a link to buy something, or even that there is one on the page if they click through to the blog.
This is not only when the content appears on Blogger, but when it gets reposted maybe to Facebook, other syndication, shared with friends, in emails etc.
Blogger is mass market – the average blogger user wouldn’t have a clue that when they inserted an Iframe within a post, it wouldn’t appear within the feeds and emails.
Anything that works contrary to what an average user might expect is broken and either needs to work a different way, or to have the functionality limitations explained clearly in the interface.