Primary Blog/Non-Profit/Amazon SMILE is dead

Amazon SMILE is dead

Thursday, January 26, 2023

Amazon SMILE is dead.

If you are anywhere near the nonprofit sector, you have probably already heard that Amazon is shutting down its SMILE program on February 20th 2023. If you listen closely, you might also be able to hear millions of nonprofit fundraisers screaming into the void, “NOOOOO!” as the realization sets in that yet another passive funding option is getting the axe. Is shutting down
the SMILE program really a bad thing though?

Shutting down Amazon SMILE may be the best thing that could happen for nonprofit
organizations. The New York Times article I read describing the change said that Amazon was
shuttering the program because it feels the impact from a 0.5% commission is not large enough to create measurable impact for any nonprofit organization, and I must agree. Unless your organization is fortunate enough to have hundreds of thousands of supporters all diligently
using the SMILE portal to support your cause, half a percentage of sales simply isn’t the kind of
revenue that can be counted on in the face of the kind of overhead most charities are struggling
to cover.

Fortunately, there is a way not only to recreate this revenue source but to actually INCREASE earnings far beyond the SMILE program limits, all while having far more control than ever before. The process is called “affiliate marketing” and any organization, including nonprofits, can do it with very little effort, and no cost.

Amazon SMILE is basically an affiliate program already, it’s just one that Amazon handles the
backend platforming for to make the process easier for charities and their supporters to use.
Shoppers would use a custom portal tied to a chosen charity to enter Amazon’s online store,
and any purchase made would be credited to the chosen charity.

Amazon’s OTHER affiliate program earns much higher commissions, in fact they can go as high
as 20% in some categories. Signing your nonprofit up for this program is incredibly simple, and
once you have an affiliate link you can share it just like you would the Amazon SMILE portal link
and ask your supporters to shop through that link. Presto! Even better, by focusing on products that align with your charitable mission you can actually leverage e-commerce to make
a real difference while empowering people to solve their own challenges, a huge win/win.

I run Food System Hackers, a Colorado Public Benefit Corporation focused on connecting
people with tools and knowledge to eat healthy at home. I am leveraging affiliate marketing as
a way to fund our charitable mission. Coincidentally, many products like Instant Pots and Air Fryers that can help people who lack a functional kitchen or who struggle in a traditional
kitchen are available on Amazon. By linking these products and talking about how they can
help to improve food security vs not having a kitchen I am directly impacting those who need
this information the most, and at the same time earning revenue needed to support local food
security and food waste diversion programs that benefit my community.

I created a short video to show how easy it is to create an affiliate account with Amazon. Just
have your EIN tax documents and bank account information ready to input into Amazon’s
Affiliate Portal and you can have your own affiliate program set up in minutes. Then share the
link with everyone you know and encourage them to support your efforts at no additional cost
to them. Results not guaranteed of course, but you could start seeing MUCH larger checks
coming from this process than SMILE could possibly match.

Now THAT is something to smile about.

Hi, I Am Jane Doe

CEO Of Best Blog Ever

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