How to Use Affiliate Links on YouTube Videos

In this guide, we'll answer common questions like "can you put affiliate links in YouTube videos?" and "can you use Amazon affiliate links on YouTube?" We'll also cover whether you can cloak affiliate links and if affiliate links count as paid promotion on YouTube. Finally, we'll discuss the legal requirements for disclosing affiliate links on YouTube. Let's get started!

Can You Put Affiliate Links in YouTube Videos?

Yes, you can put affiliate links in your YouTube video descriptions or directly in your videos. However, there are some rules and best practices to follow.

First, make sure that the products or services you are promoting are relevant to your audience and fit with your content. You don't want to come across as spammy or dishonest. Additionally, you should disclose that you are using affiliate links. We'll cover the disclosure requirements in more detail later.

Second, don't overload your video with affiliate links. If you include too many links or promote too many products, it can be overwhelming for your viewers and come across as insincere. Instead, focus on promoting products or services that you genuinely use and recommend.

Can You Use Amazon Affiliate Links on YouTube?

Yes, you can use Amazon affiliate links on YouTube. Amazon has an affiliate program called Amazon Associates that allows you to earn commissions on qualifying purchases made through your affiliate links. However, there are some specific guidelines you should follow.

First, make sure to read and follow Amazon's guidelines for using affiliate links. For example, you should use Amazon's SiteStripe tool to create your affiliate links, and you should not use link shorteners like Additionally, you should only promote products that are available on Amazon.

Second, follow YouTube's rules for disclosing affiliate links. We'll cover this in more detail later.

Can You Cloak Amazon Affiliate Links?

Amazon's Terms of Service explicitly prohibit the use of link cloaking or URL shortening services for Amazon affiliate links. Cloaking links can also make it difficult to comply with disclosure requirements. Therefore, it is not recommended to cloak Amazon affiliate links.

Do Affiliate Links Count as Paid Promotion on YouTube?

It depends on the circumstances. YouTube's Paid Promotion policy defines paid promotion as "any activity that an advertiser pays for in order to influence viewers." This includes sponsorships, endorsements, and product placements. If you are paid to promote a product or service in your video, you must disclose this to your viewers.

However, if you are using affiliate links to earn a commission on sales but are not being paid to promote the product or service, it may not be considered paid promotion. Nevertheless, you should still disclose that you are using affiliate links to be transparent with your viewers.

Do You Legally Have to Disclose Affiliate Links?

Yes, you are legally required to disclose affiliate links to your viewers. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requires disclosure of affiliate relationships to ensure that viewers are aware that you have a financial incentive to promote the product or service. Additionally, YouTube's Terms of Service require creators to comply with applicable laws and regulations, which includes the FTC's guidelines for endorsements and testimonials.

To comply with the disclosure requirements, you should make it clear to your viewers that you are using affiliate links. You can do this by including a statement in your video or in the video description.

For example, you could say "I may earn a commission if you purchase through my affiliate links" or "As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases."

It's important to be upfront and honest with your viewers about your use of affiliate links. Failing to disclose affiliate links can result in a violation of FTC guidelines and potential fines or legal action.

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