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How Amazon Super URLs Work

The addresses of a web page, or URLs (Uniform Resource Locator) give a lot of information that goes unnoticed. A series of numbers and letters come, various parameters and sometimes you may think they are random, but they are not.

On a web page like this, avertigoland.com, the URL reports what the domain is, the year, the month, and then the slug (defines the final part of the URL  that identifies a page within a website, it is usually the title of an entry). For example, article  https://avertigoland.com/2021/09/como-buscar-transacciones-en-la-blockchain/ is a clear demonstration of this.

In this article we are going to analyze the super urls of Amazon, a gigantic portal where thousands of products are sold every day and that is influenced by the browsing actions that you have previously done.

Amazon Page URLs

Most commercial pages use very complex urls but always follow a pattern. They use what are called super urls. Super URLs are similar to a redirect, similar to bit.ly, tinyurl.com, in that it generates a “short” URL that can be published and used on the Internet.

This short URL then redirects the user to a dynamic URL generator that directs Amazon, creates the qid parameter and search position parameters to make it look like a search occurred on Amazon and that the buyer selected the desired product to buy.

The easiest way to understand what exactly Amazon Super URL is is to go to Amazon.com, search for something in the main search box, and then click on the link for one of the products. For example, we are looking for a laptop and we obtain this product with the following address:

https://www.amazon.es/MSI-GF65-Thin-10UE-274XES-RTX3060-6GB/dp/B095BKWQ92/ref=sr_1_1?__mk_es_ES=%C3%85M%C3%85%C5%BD%C3%95%C3%91&dchild=1&keywords=MSI+GF65+Thin+10UE-274XES&qid=1631096184&sr=8-1

In that url comes the following information:

  • Domain, amazon.es.
  • Then the title of the page of the item being sold.
  • Next, /dp/  which is most likely “details product” or perhaps “details page”.
  • Then /B095bkwq92/  a 10-digit product code, called asin code, Amazon Standard Identification Number.
  • Keywords are also found in the URL.
  • Finally, comes the /qid=  which is a timestagged, the moment that page was loaded. This is the UNIX Epoch time of product search: the exact number of seconds since January 1, 1970.

For this search a timestagged 1631096184 was placed, that is, 1,631,096,184 seconds have passed since the 1st of energy of 1970 as can be seen on page https://www.epochconverter.com/.

urls amazon

Urls redirected from other pages

However, there are many websites that are associated with Amazon and offer the same product but referenced, that is, if there is a sale, and the sale is through that reseller, the reseller gets a percentage of the sale. In this case the URLs are different because they include the affiliate id. The same previous product if it comes from a referenced will be different.

https://www.amazon.es/dp/B095BKWQ92?&linkCode=sl1&tag=ofmn-21&linkId=b1a0d4672ba5ccb670a122b47516e601&language=es_ES&ref_=as_li_ss_tl

The address is slightly different and includes a new field called tag. It must be said that if the URL has  /ref  it means that it does not come from any other site, except the search in the amazon search engine and if it has /tag  it is that it comes from a reseller, it is a reference link.

UTM codes

UTM codes, or Urchin tracking module codes, are the industry standard for tracking marketing campaigns. They were originally created by web analytics company Urchin, which Google bought in 2005 and became Google Analytics. They deleted the name Urchin, but the parameter name “utm” is here to stay.

I’m sure I’m not the only one for whom a messy URL with UTM code provokes a visceral reaction. Among other things for the following:

  • It’s a way of saying you’re being tracked.
  • Short and simple URLs are more pleasant to see.
  • If you share a link you are including “additional junk”, a longer address, being able to use the short version.

Summary

To make a purchase you can use the first url at the beginning of this article (that of the amazon search engine) or the second (that of a referenced). The second url has an identifier of an Amazon partner, therefore, you can contribute to that person getting a percentage on the sale.

There are tools that clean the url to keep the simplest, therefore, the referenced is eliminated. In this way, we create a shorter, direct direction to the product we want. But it is important to help the partner so that part of the sale goes into their pocket.

It is very common for newspapers or media to include articles that talk about products that users can find at a good price on Amazon. If you track that address a little you realize that itene an associate ID, therefore, the newspaper will receive a percentage of the possible sale of that product. In those articles this is not referenced, but it should be known by the public that visits the page and ends up at the end of the amazon page buying a product.

References

  • https://www.sellerlabs.com/blog/super-urls-exposed/
  • https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/9012289?hl=es
  • https://www.phpied.com/short-amazon-affiliate-links-a-bookmarklet/
  • https://www.epochconverter.com/
  • https://landingcube.com/amazon-super-url/
  • https://wistia.com/learn/product-updates/fresh-url

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