Site Buddy Review: Is This The Best Amazon Affiliate Link Checker?
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Site Buddy is one of the quickest ways you can improve the earnings of your Amazon Affiliate site.
Simply sign up to Site Buddy, and it will scan your posts to notify you of any affiliate link problems.
Fixing broken links allows website owners to stop sending valuable traffic to out-of-stock products and deleted listings.
Ultimately, you'll be serving your audience better and making more money.
In a rush?
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Site Buddy Amazon Link Checker
While Site Buddy has several features, there are two that are really essential and helpful for affiliate site owners.
Site Buddy will scan your entire site and:
- find Amazon links without affiliate tags
- list and alert you to any out-of-stock or deleted Amazon listings
Solving either of these problems can immediately lead to higher earnings.
The other main feature (at this stage) is notifying you of any pages that do not have affiliate disclaimers on them. This is important, but may not be a huge problem for most site owners.
Affiliate disclaimers are often displayed in footers, in a pop-up, or automatically inserted elsewhere into all posts. However, if this is a task you usually do manually, it's likely something you need to check.
Other features we can expect in the coming months:
- Use for all Amazon programs (UK, CA, Aus, etc.)
- Support for using your own Amazon API
- Uptime monitoring for websites
- Monitoring other affiliate programs (Rakuten, Clickbank, Clickbank alternatives, CJ, ShareASale, etc.)
- Other affiliate product recommendations
Right now, Site Buddy is only good for finding problems with the US Amazon Associates program. However, adding other locales and platforms is on the roadmap.
We've tested Site Buddy's current features on the Niche Pursuits public niche site project, Own The Yard, and here's what we found.
Site Buddy Test
Own The Yard is focused on the home, yard, and outdoors niche.
Linking up Site Buddy with the website is simply a matter of creating an account.
There is no ownership verification required (other than email verification) or need to grant access to APIs, Search Console, or anything like that.
Once you create an account and confirm your email address, Site Buddy will run a scan. The FREE version will complete a 25-page scan, while the PRO version will scan the entire site.
Own The Yard has 655 posts and pages that may or may not contain affiliate links.
All of the content has been created by different writers or content services, and then edited and uploaded by our in-house team.
For this type of site, Site Buddy is especially helpful. When you're not doing everything yourself, there seems to be a greater chance of things being overlooked or missed.
For example, when I create content myself, an Amazon affiliate link is generally the only link a post will see. However, when using outside writers, posts will often first contain non-affiliate links that need to be changed.
The problem is that it's easy to miss changing one or two links here and there!
That's the first thing we're taking a look at after getting our report back from Site Buddy which they send out on a monthly basis.
Here are the results of the Links Report in which SiteBuddy scans and analyzes affiliate tags.
Site Buddy found:
- 10,403 links to Amazon on Own The Yard
- There are 11 different tags being used in the links
- 26 links to Amazon contain no affiliate tags
This is very helpful information.
We're linking to Amazon 26 times without using an affiliate link. This doesn't sound like many out of 10,000 links, but they could be on high-traffic posts. And, in my opinion, a single non-affiliate link to Amazon is too many!
The other important thing to check is that the tags being used are all yours.
A writer could have slipped their own affiliate tag onto your site, either accidentally or maliciously. This won't show up as a missing affiliate tag, but you can filter by the various tags being used on the site.
Here are 5 of the 11 different tags being used on Own The Yard.
We use different tags for:
- different sites under one Amazon account
- for tracking earnings on different posts
- conversion rate optimization
- and more
Besides finding the Amazon links without any tags, Site Buddy is a good tool for making sure the right tags are being used in the right place.
It's unusual, for example, that the tag ‘readbestreviews-20' is so dissimilar to the other tags and only used once. It would be good to make sure this is being used correctly.
We all know Amazon is serious about its terms and conditions as well.
We don't want outside affiliate tags on our site which may affect our account. A site should only have tags connected with the appropriate registered account.
After revealing what tags are being used on the site, Site Buddy tells us where to find the links without tags. It also lists where to find each link with a particular tag.
You can see this link is in the Best Airsoft Spring Pistol post and that it's missing an affiliate tag.
Now we can go into the post and replace the link with our affiliate link.
One downside of the tool (at this point) is that it doesn't give you an anchor text or any other way to locate the link in the post.
You have to memorize part of the link (eg. ‘B001DH') and then hover over every link in the article until you find it. This can take a while, especially on Own The Yard as some of the posts have 30+ affiliate links in them.
Besides this small issue, the Links Report feature is very good.
The Products Report reveals more significant issues for Own The Yard.
Over 500 of the products we are linking to are out-of-stock or no longer exist. That's over a quarter of all the products we are linking to in total!
The ‘Errored' products are the ones to focus on changing and updating. These products no longer exist and take site visitors to the dogs of Amazon.
At least with out-of-stock products, visitors are taken to the product page when they click through. They are presented with alternative products to buy.
Deleted listings are bad news for affiliate sites because they are frustrating for visitors and there are no other recommended products shown. That's why it's important to keep on top of them.
Site Buddy lets us save time and filter by ‘exists' to show the deleted listings, how many times they're being linked to, and where to find them.
Instead of failing randomly, simply filter by ‘in-stock' to find those listings that are out-of-stock, and consider whether it's worth swapping them out.
It can be difficult knowing what to do with out-of-stock Amazon listings. Many of these products do come back into stock quickly and so often there is no point changing them out.
It can be a game of whack-a-mole as some products go out-of-stock and others come back online from day-to-day.
However, if you have out-of-stock items on some of your top pages then it can be a wise move to at least list an alternative product.
Being able to filter by the number of links means you can also focus on the out-of-stock products you link to the most.
Own The Yard links to these out-of-stock soccer boots 15 times from various different posts.
There is the same problem of having to find the links within the post, but at least in this case we know what the product is and what it looks like.
The Products Report is perhaps the most important Site Buddy tool and will be extremely valuable for Amazon affiliate site owners.
There's nothing worse as a shopper to click through to a product that isn't available or doesn't exist. It's not great having broken images from Amazon all over your site either!
The Pages Report detects how many pages do not have affiliate disclaimers.
As already mentioned, I don't believe this is a huge problem for affiliate site owners, and Own The Yard has no issues here.
It has a clear disclaimer in the site-wide footer.
An affiliate disclaimer is something that is easily added across an entire site with a line of text and a few clicks.
However, for those who prefer to do this manually on a post-by-post basis, using Site Buddy is a good way to find out if you've missed it on any posts.
Site Buddy Review
Site Buddy is a really useful tool for Amazon affiliate sites.
It's being run by a great team of respected entrepreneurs, including:
- Jon Gillham (pictured right)
- Conor Watt
It's a super intuitive and easy way to find all those deleted and out-of-stock products. It's a problem that is occurring more and more, as shipping and other manufacturing processes continue to be disrupted.
It is important to have current and available products to recommend to our audiences and it can translate directly into higher earnings.
- Super intuitive and Easy to start using
- Effectively detects problems in Amazon affiliate links
- Helpful filters to find the problem links you want to start with
- Download and export results for a VA to help replace problem links
- Affordable with PRO starting at only $12 per month per site and much cheaper for multiple sites
- Automatic weekly scans but you can't choose to scan when you want
- Does not work with affiliate programs outside of Amazon US at this stage
- Displays problem affiliate links but doesn't show the location in the post
The automatic weekly scan is good, but if you decided to work on these link issues 6 days after a scan was run, there will likely be some products back online and others that are off.
It would be better to be able to run a new scan right before you are going to work on the links, and this is likely a feature they have in mind for future development.
The Site Buddy Guarantee
Site Buddy even have a success guarantee:
You Make More Money Or It's Free
If you sign up to Site Buddy Pro and aren't making more money on Amazon per 1000 pageviews then they'll refund your first monthly payment and give you the tool free for a year (T&Cs).
Pretty cool, and it means you've got nothing to lose – you'll save money and make more no matter what!
Site Buddy is another really helpful online tool for niche site owners.
It could even be used in tandem with a tool like SEOTesting.com to see if fixing broken links helps rankings in Google. No doubt it plays a part!
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