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Top Tips to Earn Commission Reviewing Amazon Products As a Side Hustle

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Top Tips to Earn Commission Reviewing Amazon Products As a Side Hustle

Lauren Butterfield spent most of 2023 searching for side hustles that could top off her income to offset the rising cost of living.

The recruiter at Adobe first tried affiliate marketing by creating a blog about sustainability that included links to brands that use environmentally friendly materials. But her website’s traffic was too low. She then tried selling celery juice powder on Amazon. It sold well, but Amazon’s fees were too high, making her profit margins too small relative to the time she invested.

Butterfield gave up on finding additional gigs until she began seeing posts on TikTok about how others were earning commissions from posting review videos on Amazon. At first, she assumed it was another get-rich-quick scheme. But after seeing multiple posts, she thought there was little to lose in trying.

By the end of July, she had created an Amazon storefront account through the site’s influencer page, which stores all uploaded content. She then posted three video reviews, which is the number required by Amazon to get accepted for the on-site commission program.

Her first products were a tank top, a makeup concealer, and a gratitude journal. She had purchased them from Amazon and used them every day.

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“It was uncomfortable at first,” Butterfield, 32, said. “I’m not an influencer I don’t talk to the camera. It’s not my bread and butter. So it took several different takes, to be honest.”

The videos were between 60 and 90 seconds long. Butterfield liked the products, so she shared the pros of each one, including how the tank top fit, the concealer’s consistency, and the features of the journal.

Three days later, she knew she had been approved because the “earned on-site commission” feature in her storefront was now accessible. If it remains locked, you won’t earn commissions even if you post hundreds of videos, she emphasized.

Within the first week, Butterfield made a little under $5. Once she saw commissions trickle in, she became excited and set a goal of making $300 a month.

“In my mind, I thought this was actually going to be something, even if it was going to be a couple hundred dollars,” Butterfield said. “Life is so expensive. I was like, this can help with groceries, with gas — and it was minimal effort.”

During her first month, she put in about three hours a week, sometimes after work and sometimes on the weekends. After the third month, she was only spending about three to four hours a month uploading anywhere between 20 to 30 videos a month, she said.

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Within the first 30 days, she had uploaded over 200 videos and made over $900 by the end of August.

Since July, she has uploaded over 400 videos. Most of the products she reviews fall into three categories: low-ticket items under $50, high-ticket items over $100, and trending or seasonal items. One category she has observed that does well is home improvement products such as faucets and showerheads because they are popular with shoppers and can earn up to 4% commissions.

Since last July, she has earned $8,849 in commissions, according to a screenshot of her Amazon dashboard.

Top 5 tips

You have to be prepared to remain consistent. Don’t expect to upload 100 videos, walk away, and then expect to make thousands of dollars. She recommends hitting 200 videos within the first month — roughly six a day — because if you can see the returns early on, then you’re more likely to be excited about it and commit to the process, she said. Afterwards, maintain the volume by setting a goal you can stick to. She suggests adding at least 20 to 30 videos a month after that.

Although videos that make it to the carousel of new content tend to see the most returns, a strong archive is also key, she said. For example, Butterfield reviewed a hair oil that had been trending on social media in July. It did well that month, but it eventually died down. She recently noticed that her review began to earn commission again. And so, a video you created six months ago may stop earning, but it could also make a comeback.

Your videos must be creative, and the content must provide quality information. This is very important because if there are multiple review videos for a product, the last video watched before a purchase is what earns the commission. Amazon assumes that the video converted the shopper, she said. There’s no set guide to ensuring your video is watched last, but if you create a convincing review, you can take a person from “‘do I really want this?’ to ‘OK, now that I watch that, I’m adding it to my cart,’” Butterfield said.

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Don’t sleep on the low-ticket items. Butterfield reviews products under $25 even if the commission is pennies, she said.

“The perfect example is the hair oil,” Butterfield said. “I bought it for $8 off of Amazon nine months ago, and last week, that product alone brought in over $80. So, if you can get on the carousel, those couple cents add up to your lump sum. And I also believe there are not as many people purchasing thousands of dollars on Amazon as frequently as they are $15 here, $80 there. So those low-ticket items really carry you through.”

The cheaper products she reviewed that did really well and surprised her were a $7 hair wax stick, a $25 nail-repair gel, and a $28 mascara stick.

Lean into trends that you see. These include products that are becoming popular on social media, especially TikTok. Another great source is Amazon’s trending list, which can be found by clicking “All” at the top left of the site.

Amazon dropdown tab

Amazon’s top dropdown tab.

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Amazon dropdown tab

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Butterfield suggests paying attention to all three categories listed in the image above. She added that it is important to note how often a product has been sold and its ratings to ensure that people like it and continue to buy it.

An example of a viral product she reviewed was a plumping lipstick. After seeing an influencer create a video about it, Butterfield became convinced to purchase it from a TikTok shop. But she also noticed it had sold more than 700 times within the last 30 days on Amazon, so she decided to review it. One thing to note is that trending products can die down quickly.

Even if you don’t own the same brand of the trending product, you can own and review a dupe, which is a similar product from a cheaper brand, she said. For example, Butterfield noted that while the Stanley cup has recently been trending on Amazon’s bestseller list, there’s a good chance shoppers will look through significantly cheaper brands.

Pay attention to seasonal products. The next opportunity is Valentine’s Day, so you should be reviewing items that may be popular now, she said. This way, as people browse ideas, your videos will already be up.

Perhaps Butterfield’s most important tip is to just get started and not be intimidated about putting yourself out there.

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“Anyone can do this,” Butterfield said. “Again, I think people want to see authentic reviews. So even if you’re feeling, ‘well, gosh, my hair is not great, or my background is not perfect, it does not matter. I have so many of my reviews where I have zero makeup, a greasy bun on my head, and they do great because people want to see real people. So don’t let that stop you from trying this.”

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Samsung: 6-Day Workweek For Execs, Company in Emergency Mode

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Samsung: 6-Day Workweek For Execs, Company in Emergency Mode

Four-day workweeks might have all the buzz, but one major tech company is going in the opposite direction.

Samsung is implementing a six-day workweek for all executives after some of the firm’s core businesses delivered lower-than-expected financial results last year.

A Samsung Group executive told a Korean news outlet that “considering that performance of our major units, including Samsung Electronics Co., fell short of expectations in 2023, we are introducing the six-day work week for executives to inject a sense of crisis and make all-out efforts to overcome this crisis.”

Lower performance combined with other economic uncertainties like high borrowing costs have pushed the South Korean company to enter “emergency mode,” per The Korea Economic Daily.

Related: Apple Is No Longer the Top Phonemaker in the World as AI Pressure and Competition Intensifies

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Executives at all Samsung Group divisions will be affected, including those in sales and manufacturing, according to the report.

Samsung had its worst financial year in over a decade in 2023, with the Wall Street Journal reporting that net profit fell 73% in Q4. It also lost its top spot on the global smartphone market to Apple in the same quarter, though it reclaimed it this year.

Though employees below the executive level aren’t yet mandated to clock in on weekends, some might follow the unwritten example of their bosses. After all, The Korea Economic Daily reports that executives across some Samsung divisions have been voluntarily working six days a week since January, before the company decided to implement the six-day workweek policy.

Entrepreneur has reached out to Samsung’s U.S. newsroom to ask if this news includes executives situated globally, including in the U.S., or if it only affects employees in Korea. Samsung did not immediately respond.

Research on the relationship between hours worked and output shows that working more does not necessarily increase productivity.

A Stanford project, for example, found that overwork leads to decreased total output. Average productivity decreases due to stress, sleep deprivation, and other factors “to the extent that the additional hours [worked] provide no benefit (and, in fact, are detrimental),” the study said.

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Related: Samsung’s Newest Galaxy Gadget Aims ‘To See How Productive You Can Be’

Longer hours can also mean long-term health effects. The World Health Organization found that working more than 55 hours a week decreases life expectancy and increases the risk of stroke by 35%.

The same 55-hour workweek leads to a 17% higher risk of heart disease, per the same study.

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John Deere Hiring CTO ‘Chief Tractor Officer,’ TikTok Creator

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John Deere Hiring CTO 'Chief Tractor Officer,' TikTok Creator

This article originally appeared on Business Insider.

Agriculture equipment company John Deere is on the hunt for a different kind of CTO.

The brand on Tuesday announced a two-week search to find a “Chief Tractor Officer” who would create social media content to reach younger consumers.

One winning applicant will receive up to $192,300 to traverse the country over the next several months showcasing the way John Deere products are used by workers, from Yellowstone National Park to Chicago’s Wrigley Field and beyond.

“No matter what you do — whether it’s your coffee, getting dressed in the morning, driving to work, the building you go into — it’s all been touched by a construction worker, a farmer, or a lawn care maintenance group,” Jen Hartmann, John Deere’s global director of strategic public relations, told AdAge.

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To kick off the search, John Deere tapped NFL quarterback Brock Purdy (who will presumably be a bit busy this Fall to take the job himself) to star in a clip in which he attempts to set out on a road trip in an industrial tractor.

Suited up in the obligatory vest, work boots, and John Deere hat, Purdy’s progress is interrupted by teammate Colton McKivitz hopping into the cab while a string of messages floods in from other athletes and influencers expressing interest in the job.

The clip also represents the first time that the 187-year-old company has used celebrities to promote itself, Hartmann told AdAge.

According to the contest rules, entrants have until April 29 at midnight to submit a single 60-second video making their pitch for why they should be the face and voice of the company.

In addition, entrants must live in the 48 contiguous states or DC — sorry Hawaii and Alaska residents. Interestingly, any AI-generated submissions are prohibited, too.

Videos will be judged against four categories — originally, creativity, quality, and brand knowledge — after which five finalists will be chosen and notified after May 17.

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How to Capitalize On This Thriving Talent Pool to Drive Your Company’s Growth

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How to Capitalize On This Thriving Talent Pool to Drive Your Company's Growth

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

As business operations shift, executives and entrepreneurs are increasingly turning to an on-demand workforce that is simultaneously empowered by technology and drawn to purpose-driven projects.

Consider Upwork, whose 2020 Future of Workforce Pulse Report revealed that nearly 80% of hiring managers engaging freelancers feel confident about doing so. These hires provide coveted expertise — on a project-to-project basis — that entrepreneurs need to scale their operations without incurring long-term overhead costs.

This new market paradigm also promotes dynamism, with 79% of businesses agreeing that freelance talent enables greater innovativeness. Perhaps most telling, 84% of hiring managers utilizing it feel more assured about adapting to future disruption, compared to just 69% of those relying solely on full-time staff.

By capitalizing on freelance marketplaces, entrepreneurs can amplify employer branding, augment capabilities and future-proof organizations, even amid turbulence. As nearly 60% of hiring managers plan to increase engagement with freelancers over the next two years, the time is now for executives to realize their inherent potential.

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Related: Navigating the Great Reshuffle: Why Your Employer Brand is Key in Recruiting Talent

The job market continues to shift

After a season of massive hiring, we’re back to seeing layoffs and downsizing. Companies are feeling the bloat—from unused office spaces with rising rent to oversized employee structures — and are shifting focus to hiring only the most essential positions. This leaves a critical talent gap needed for complex projects and specialized tasks. Highly skilled and specialized independents can fill this void.

A few key benefits to engaging them:

Access to niche experts: Platforms like Toptal and Guru provide access to elite professionals from leading Fortune 500 companies and innovative startups. Whether the need is for a machine learning specialist, growth strategist or financial modeler, entrepreneurs can now curate on-demand teams that boast specialized skillsets, enabling them to focus investment on projects with the highest strategic value.

Enhanced agility: Leading corporations increasingly “rent” skills by tapping freelance experts for initiatives involving new technologies or while entering unfamiliar markets. With niche contributors available to plug knowledge gaps, owners can explore ideas that once seemed unrealistic due to internal constraints—unlocking inventiveness and first-mover advantage.

• Stronger employment brand: Blending full-time employees with project-based freelancers signals a commitment to modernization and work-life balance. Offering both engaging work and flexibility will help draw exceptional candidates and help you compete with corporate giants for top-tier talent.

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Related: Can Retirees Thrive in the Gig Economy? Navigating a Changed Workforce

Tips for capitalizing on gig talent

Having explored the forces reshaping work, executives may wonder how to effectively leverage freelance platforms. After all, how can you know you’re getting your money’s worth if a hire isn’t physically present full-time?

• Define projects clearly: Contract hires thrive when expectations and deadlines are established upfront. So, clearly, detail needs around deliverables, success metrics, required skills and projected time investments. Staying ahead when it comes to communication and expectations will help avoid headaches, including delays.

• Build loyalty with talent: The best independent professionals have options regarding the projects they accept. Study their profiles to discern passions and incentives. Offer interesting work, flexibility and strong communication to motivate interest and improve results.

• Manage collaboration: Provide steady context, feedback and guidance at each project stage, but also foster autonomy, even while directing efforts toward strategic goals. A dynamic balance of these qualities drives optimal outcomes.

• Continue expanding your talent pool: Add proven freelancers to an internal database for repeat engagements, and notify talent about new initiatives for which their expertise would provide an edge. Uncovering additional ways, freelancers can enhance the business deepens the relationship.

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Related: Fill Your Talent Gap by Sourcing Candidates From the Veteran Community

Top platforms for connecting with talent

Now comes the hard part: finding contractors who bring fractional expertise sets. There are a growing number of platforms, of course, but I’ve found that the following stand out as leaders:

Fiverr: Ideal for execs seeking design, digital marketing, writing, video and admin support. Known for affordability and ease of posting jobs. It taps a global talent pool, too.

Upwork: A flexible platform that spans more than 150 skills. Used by everyone from small businesses to global enterprises. Strong at IT, development, design, finance and consulting.

Toptal: Focuses exclusively on the top 3% of talent. Best for expert software developers, designers, project managers and finance experts. All contributors are extensively vetted.

Contra: A growing independent platform that vets and connects both job candidates and hiring companies. Best of all, it doesn’t take a commission from projects.

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Related: 3 Strategies to Optimize Your Hiring Process and Find the Best Employees

The numbers speak for themselves: businesses engaging freelance professionals report greater confidence and competitiveness, as well as the ability to withstand turbulence, yet legacy beliefs can still cause hesitancy among those keen to hire. Supported by such specialized collaborators, companies can explore new horizons unencumbered by a one-time narrow view of staffing models.

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