Bloggers can make money from Kindle subscriptions, not available for everyone

And all you need is a blog with an RSS feed. Amazon has opened their platform to bloggers with a US bank account. Defining yet another way to make money through blogging, Amazon allows blog publishers to keep 30% of the income generated from blog subscriptions on their Kindle reader. That’s roughly USD 0.60 cents per subscriber per month if it costs USD 1.99 to subscribe your blog.

To sign up, you will need a separate account from your regular Amazon account. This service is still in Beta, so we’re bound to see some changes in the rates in the future. Of course, subscribing to feeds should be free (because it is free everywhere else), yet we’re also interested to see how this new business model develops for Amazon and bloggers.

We do wish that this service opens up to the rest of the world, as it alienates non-US based bloggers who want a hack at monetizing this new platform. It is indeed a sad reality that the Kindle isn’t available outside the USA in the same way that buying intellectual properties such as audiobooks, eBooks and music from Amazon (and iTunes) is very much restricted. Maybe it is time for a second version of the Florence Agreement?

Amazon Launches Blog Widget

This is an interesting move from Amazon. They are adding a Amazon Blogs Widget, a new feature that lets you embed the latest blog posts from a selection of eight blogs writing about stuff that Amazon sells. If you’re an Associates member (ie got an account for their affiliate program) you can earn money on sales generated through the widget links.

Check it out, along with the new author stores, which is basically designed author product listings. Great for niche bloggers, and consumers as well I guess.

The Affiliate Networks Need to Get Global

As a blog publisher not located in the US, I sympathize with Darren Rowse (of fame). He’s posted an open letter to Amazon, in regards to their affiliate program, called Amazon Associates. Darren’s making a lot of money on Amazon, around $2,000-3,000 monthly, and he estimates that he’s sent around $1,500,000 in sales over the last 5 years. Impressive. [Read more…]

Amazon Does Video On Demand for Associates

Amazon have added support for their Video On Demand services in the Associates program, being their affiliate solution as you probably know by now. Here’s the core of it:

Take advantage of the launch of this popular new Amazon movie & TV streaming service and earn a 10% referral fee on all movies, TV seasons, and TV episodes such as The Office, House and Law & Order. Leverage Amazon Video On Demand’s Preview Player widget and add movie trailers to your site. Hit movies and top TV episodes are among the most compelling forms of video on the web with the highest conversion rates.

Although it isn’t mentioned in the post, you should probably remember that TV shows and movies won’t be available globally. Sign in to Associates to learn more.

Amazon buys book sharing startup Shelfari

Amazon has purchased book sharing startup Shelfari according to posts by Read/Write Web and TechCrunch last night.

The startup, which has one of the most interesting & funky user interfaces I’ve ever seen, is essentially a social networking & book sharing system for those that love to read.. like me!

Shelfari’s team makes the formal announcement on their blog:

We’ve got some big plans ahead. With more resources and Amazon’s expertise in building a platform where people come to share ideas, there are a lot of new opportunities in the future that will benefit each of you. In the meantime, you’ll continue to have access to the great community and tools that you’ve always known and used on the site.

Paul Stamatiou on living the cloud life

Paul Stamatiou has written a great post on ‘How to Live the Cloud Life’.

Paul outlines how to use cloud computing for several different things – ranging from E-mail (gmail), to storage (Amazon S3), to documents (Google Docs), and others.

As Paul writes in his intro:

There’s no doubt about it, I’m in love with the cloud. Some people might not share my fascination with storage-in-the-cloud and compute-in-the-cloud models but I can’t wait to have the same computing experience regardless of the computer or device I’m using to connect to the Internet. I’ve taken it upon myself to change my workflow and digital lifestyle to get as much of my data online and make use of web-based tools until that utopian time comes. Here’s how I do it and you can do the same.

Well worth the read…

Amazon to Recommend Stuff on Your Site (Products Too)

Amazon has launched a brand new widget in their Associates program, something that hardly qualifies as news by itself. This one is a bit interesting though, as it not only pushes relevant (?) products on Amazon, but also related content on your very own site. That is interesting, since it means that Amazon would have to analyze your content to make any kind of decent recommendations. The launch posts doesn’t give us much more than that, other than a dummy image, but Amazon affiliates can login and give it a go themselves. Have you used this widget? Share your experience in the comments!

Amazon Forces POD Publishers To Go BookSurge

Amazon’s got a new policy for POD, short for print-on-demand, publishers: Get with the BookSurge program, or the buy button goes. BookSurge is basically Amazon’s own POD operation, so they want all publishers to move over there.

This is quite a story, complicated and somewhat crazy. It’s about a company using its monopoly to make more money.

If you’re the least interested in publishing, head over to the excellent WritersWeekly and read the full story. Then check out Amazon’s reply, and the WSJ story that started it all (requires login).