Publisher Studio FAQ

Get Started


What is unique about Publisher Studio?

Publisher Studio makes the link creation process for Amazon Associates easier and faster. It does this by allowing you to create text links to Amazon products without leaving your website. There is no need to visit Associates Central or Amazon, and no requirement to edit or re-publish your web pages. You can complete your link creation in just a few clicks.

In addition, Publisher Studio provides the option to link to products on the images on your site, allowing you to monetize your images in a non-intrusive way. Publisher Studio helps builds in-image ads by placing a small “Shop Now” button on the lower right-hand corner of your tagged images to allow customers to learn more and shop for the products featured in your image content. Visitors to your website can also share products tagged on the in-image ads pop-over on their Facebook and Twitter feeds, driving additional advertising fees for products that go viral as your associate tag is embedded each time a link is shared.

Site and System Requirements

What types of content/pages are best suited for and supported by Publisher Studio?
Sites featuring static content are best suited for Publisher Studio. Content such as rotating images, carousels, slide-shows, widgets, dynamic image galleries, infinite scroll pages, and other dynamic content is not supported. In addition, Publisher Studio links cannot be placed on content that are Flash-based or within iFrames.

What browsers are supported for link building?
The following browsers are supported for creating links using Publisher Studio: Internet Explorer 9+, FireFox 23+, Safari S7 and Chrome 30+.

On what browsers can visitors to my site view Publisher Studio links?
Viewing of Publisher Studio links is supported on Internet Explorer 9+, Firefox 21+, Safari S7 and Chrome 23+.

Will the links I build using Publisher Studio show up on tablet or mobile devices?
Yes, visitors on mobile and tablet devices will be able to see Publisher Studio links. Publisher Studio links are dynamic in nature and are tied to a given page URL where they were linked from. The links you created on your desktop site will be visible automatically on mobile or tablet devices so long as the same URL is used by your site for both desktop and mobile or tablet browsers. This will be the case for sites that provide the same experience to desktop and mobile or tablet browsers, or for websites that are designed to be responsive, delivering differently formatted pages to mobile or tablet browsers while using the same page URL. On sites where the page or image URL changes on various device types, one would have to create the links for each version with a different URL.

Does Publisher Studio work with blogging tools like WordPress, Blogger, etc.?
Yes, Publisher Studio JavaScript can be installed on popular CMS platforms like Blogger, WordPress CMS, Drupal, etc. The tool is currently not being offered as a CMS plugin, but as a JavaScript that can be added to any CMS platform. Some online platforms do not allow users to add any third party JavaScript, and Publisher Studio will not work on these. Note that Publisher Studio links created on the individual page for a specific blog entry will not appear when that blog entry appears in a blog home page presenting a consolidated feed of entries or in an RSS feed. Please refer to the Known Issues section for more details.

Installation and Deployment


I use tracking IDs. Can Publisher Studio text and image links be created with different tracking IDs?
The JavaScript that you install on your site has a tracking ID embedded in it. You can install JavaScript with different tracking IDs on different pages. On a given page, the image and text links will be created using the tracking ID in the JavaScript that has been placed on that page. Using multiple tracking IDs for Publisher Studio links on a single page is not possible. Any other Associates link, such as a text link embedded in the page content, a banner or a widget, will retain the tracking ID that is already coded into the link. Publisher Studio will not overwrite the tracking ID for those links.

Can I measure the performance of Publisher Studio links versus other link types?
Yes, the Link-Type report on Associate Central includes separate reporting on the performance of Publisher Studio links. You will see impressions, clicks, earnings and the other usual metrics broken out separately for Publisher Studio text and image links.

Will Publisher Studio change how my website content looks?
There is no change to how your website’s content looks. In-image links display a small “Shop Now” graphic in the bottom right corner on the image tagged by you, which when hovered over by your visitor will display product information in a pop-over in a beautiful and non-intrusive manner. Text links look like hand created text links.

Will I be required to change my website in order to start using Publisher Studio?
You will need to include the JavaScript code in the footer of all pages on your site where you intend to create Publisher Studio links. We encourage you to first deploy this code to a test environment and conduct end-to-end testing to ensure all features are fully compatible with your web site before making the code live on your site. Should you have specific questions on compatibility, please see the ‘Support’ section below.

Will I need to update the Publisher Studio code embedded in my site when upgrades are released?
No. There is no need to manually update the JavaScript reference code embedded in your site. The code that you place on your site automatically retrieves the latest version of the Publisher Studio, including the latest features and functionality. Where practical, we will attempt to provide you with advance notice of any significant modifications to Publisher Studio. However, in certain cases we may make critical updates to Publisher Studio without providing you prior notice or a chance to opt-out.

Will Publisher Studio affect my web site’s performance?
We do not expect your web site’s performance to be impacted by Publisher Studio if the JavaScript is added to the footer of your HTML page. We strongly encourage you to evaluate Publisher Studio in a test environment to ensure performance is not impacted for your site or your visitors.

Will Publisher Studio scale to support my website's traffic?
Publisher Studio uses Amazon Web Services' CloudFront which easily scales up and will not be an issue.

What happens if Amazon Web Services’ CloudFront has a service interruption or is doing maintenance? Will my links still be available? Will links need to be rebuilt or recovered once the service comes back online?
In the unlikely event that CloudFront has service issues, Publisher Studio created links will not be visible to site visitors in your content, however once restored, all of the links you created will appear automatically without needing any extra work from you.

Will Amazon collect information about my web site traffic and my visitors?
We can potentially collect information in an anonymous fashion about end users of your site. Any such collection of information would comply with our Privacy Notice [http://www.amazon.com/privacy]. In order to evaluate and optimize Publisher Studio link performance, we will be collecting information such as link impressions and how visitors interacted with Publisher Studio links (e.g., information about clicks and mouse-overs). Subject always to our Privacy Notice, we may collect more, less or different information in the future, and will not provide advance notice of any change in what information we are collecting.

Can I disable or stop using Publisher Studio links and in-image ads on my website?
Yes, at any point in time you can use the “Status” option within the Associate Central Publisher Studio tab to control whether you would like to show the links to your visitors or not. You can do this without having to remove the JavaScript. If you turn the status of your site to “Off,” links will not be visible for your website visitors, but you will continue to view them as publisher. This allows you to test everything locally and change the status to “On” when you are ready. If you no longer want to use Publisher Studio, you can remove the JavaScript from your website at any point. This will not affect any traditional text links, banners or widgets you created using other tools.

How do I start using Publisher Studio?
Sign into your Associates account and navigate to the Publisher Studio tab within Associates Central. Next, generate the Publisher Studio JavaScript instance for your site and copy the code. Add this small piece of code to the footer on your website (See instructions in the “Using Publisher Studio” section below) so that it is the last piece of code executed. Please ensure that only one instance of the JavaScript is present on each page.

Using Publisher Studio

Where on my site should I copy the Publisher Studio JavaScript code?
We recommend copying the script to a common footer that will be included as part of all pages on your site on which you wish to use Publisher Studio). Placing the script in the footer will ensure that the Publisher Studio scripts are the last component of each page loaded by a visitor’s browser. This will allow all of your content to be loaded before Publisher Studio begins showing links created.

Will the location I copy the Publisher Studio JavaScript to affect web site performance?
You should copy the JavaScript to the footer to ensure that Publisher Studio scripts are loaded only after components in your page have been loaded by the browser. This would ensure that Publisher Studio can create or display all the links after all other content has been loaded.

Does my JavaScript event handling affect Publisher Studio?
Yes. Intercepting and canceling events would affect the functionality of Publisher Studio. For example, intercepting the clicks in a slideshow next/previous button would mean that Publisher Studio scripts would not be able to detect that the displayed image has changed. This may lead to unrelated links staying on the screen after the visitor has navigated to a different image in the slideshow. This situation might also appear with light-box/image-view widgets that disable all click/keyboard interactions with the overlay. As a measure of best practices, always ensure that the events (even if they are intercepted) are available in the browser.

What happens if a product I linked to is no longer available?
If a product is discontinued or no longer available, Publisher Studio will no longer display links to that product.

Troubleshooting tips while building Text and In-image Links

Toolbar not visible
The following situations prevent the toolbar from being visible:
- Toolbar is enabled for a given browser. To view the toolbar on other browsers that you use, please enable the toolbar on those browsers again.
- Disable browser extensions like AdBlock that prevent loading of Publisher Studio JavaScript.
- Did you clear cookies recently? If yes, enable toolbar again.
- If you had enabled toolbar on incognito/private browsing mode on your browser. Try again on the normal mode.

Supported content
Static pages, Images (JPEG, PNG, GIF and all popular formats)

Unsupported content
Video or Flash content, iFrames, SVG, Other dynamic content

Situations where Link Creation will fail
The following situations prevent linking in Publisher Studio:
- Publisher Studio will not create new links over existing links.
- Publisher Studio will not create links across paragraphs or sections. Although it may not be easy to recognize visually, in some cases a text paragraph may span across two or more underlying HTML elements.

Flash content
Issue: Flash images cannot be tagged; also flash content could overlap ad pop-overs (when they are very close).
Suggested approach: Do not tag images (or text) that are very close to flash content

Dynamic Content (For Example: slide shows, carousels, infinite scroll pages, AJAX based elements etc.)
Issue: Publisher Studio will not detect new images that appear in the page without click/scroll/resize interactions, so dynamic content like automatic slideshows will not work correctly for tagging and displaying links.
Suggested approach: Do not run any automatic intervals for image flipping and do not block any keyboard/mouse click events, if you plan to tag dynamic content.

Overlaying images with transparent image overlays
Issue: Transparent frames could lead to creating links on the transparent frame
Suggested approach: Avoid using Publisher Studio links with transparent image overlays as this could cause links to be tagged on the transparent overlay instead of the image itself. Moreover, if the same frame is used across many images it will cause the pin to appear on all the images. A solution would be to use Publisher studio’s Theatre Mode and black-list frame.jpg before creating your links.

High or negative z-index for images
Issue: If there are multiple images that overlap each other (this can typically happen due to same image position, but with different z-index values), there is a chance that mouse-over behavior will work erratically or there is a possibility of links from the an underlying image showing up over the ones on top.
Suggested approach: Ensure that the mouse-hover on images is not blocked (due to an overlay, negative z-index or intentional capture and consumption of the event).

Display type for anchor is set to block
Issue: This results in splitting the paragraph into multiple blocks which is not supported, and can result in incorrect rendering of the links.
Suggested approach: Avoid this type of pattern, or ensure that the CSS of the page continues to render links correctly as Publisher Studio does not add any CSS.

Image source (URL) changing dynamically or within a <p> tag
Issue: When the source of the image changes dynamically, the Publisher Studio links will not update. Publisher Studio recognizes images by their URLs, so if the source changes dynamically Publisher Studio cannot detect attribute changes in the HTML element. When images present within a <p> HTML tag are linked, the page content after the image will move down by a few pixels.
Suggested approach: We suggest that you avoid changing image URLs dynamically.

Ensure “doc-type” is specified for every document
Issue: If no doc-type is mentioned, relatively modern browsers (especially Internet Explorer) will open the page in Compatibility Mode which simulates an old version of the browser leading to sub-optimal experience.
Suggested approach: Recommend that you strictly add the doctype in the code to open on latest browser version, for optimal experience.

Ensure reference URLs for images in your pages are consistent across possible CDN distributions
Issue: If content is delivered from multiple locations and if the content URL could potentially change, this would result in failure to render Publisher Studio image links. This is because Publisher Studio uses the reference URL to render links.
Suggested approach: If content is delivered from multiple locations, ensure that the image URLs are the same, irrespective of the CDN from which it is served.

Support

Who should I contact with questions or have feedback regarding Publisher Studio?
Please send questions to the following email address (publisherstudio-feedback@amazon.com) and we will ensure the appropriate team responds within three business days.

Known Issues

Do Publisher Studio links show up dynamically on my blog or content editor, blog home page, RSS feeds or other pages where my blog articles are summarized?
No. Since Publisher Studio links are not embedded into your HTML but are rendered dynamically at run time, we currently show the links on the specific page where it was linked from. Hence, adding a link on the page for an individual blog post will not cause the same link to be shown on the home page where the blog’s content is presented in a combined feed or on the content editor.

Do Publisher Studio links show up automatically on my m.site or mobile site which has different URL pattern than my desktop site?
No. Publisher Studio links, as mentioned above, are not embedded into your HTML but are rendered dynamically so we currently show the links on the specific page where it was linked from. Hence, adding a link on a specific page URL, will not cause the same links to show up on pages with a different page URL, even though the content might be the same. You will need to add the script to your m.site or mobile site and build links on this distinct URL.

Does browser extensions like AdBlock affect Publisher Studio links?
Yes. Publisher Studio links are dynamically rendered from the Amazon advertising systems. Hence, AdBlock treats them any other Ad on your page and may block them.

Do Publisher Studio links show up automatically on pages accessed via 'https' protocol?
No. Publisher Studio links works on all pages accessed via http protocol, which covers most websites. However on pages accessed via 'https' protocol, Publisher Studio will not work. We will be adding this functionality in the future and until then, you can continue to use the traditional linking tools on Associate Central.

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