How to Get your Amazon Access Key ID and Amazon Secret Access Key:

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Summary: I got my Amazon Access Key ID and Secret Access Key for free using my Amazon affiliate account.

(Skip intro and go to the Step by Step Instructions below:)

I purchased a WordPress plugin that fetches Amazon products directly through my WordPress post interface.  I am running an Amazon affiliate WordPress ecommerce online store. The plugin is supposed to help me populate my Amazon affiliate website faster. But, in order to make the plugin work and connect with my actual Amazon account (so I get my commission), I needed an Amazon Access Key ID and Amazon Secret Access Key.

According to Amazon, “the Product Advertising API provides programmatic access to Amazon’s product selection and discovery functionality so that developers can advertise Amazon products to monetize your website.

The Amazon Product Advertising API gives us access to Amazon’s selection of millions of products in different categories such as books, music, digital downloads, electronics and more from Amazon.com, Amazon.ca, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, Amazon.fr, Amazon.es, Amazon.it, Amazon.co.jp, Amazon.cn, Amazon.in …”

In short, the Amazon API enables our plugin to search for products, product information, rating and other features using our Amazon account.

Here’s How I did it Step by Step:

In order to get my Access Key ID and Secret Access Key, I had to sign up for Amazon Web Services through my existing Amazon associates account. At first, I googled Amazon API and was led to a site where I was asked to login using my existing Amazon account which I did, then it proceeded to ask for my website information, then for payment/ credit card information.

Getting Started with Amazon Product Advertising API
Getting Started with Amazon Product Advertising API page screenshot
Amazon API Fee
Amazon API Requests Fee

It did say that I will be automatically enrolled to the free tier and that my credit card won’t be charged for the first 1 million monthly API requests… this didn’t seem right to me so I googled Amazon API again and was led to the correct page (where I did not have to enter my credit card information and pay). The title of the Amazon page “Getting Started with Product Advertising API”  (following link http://docs.aws.amazon.com/AWSECommerceService/latest/GSG/GettingStarted.html#BecomingDev )

Getting Started with Product Advertising API Screenshot
Getting Started with Product Advertising API Page Screenshot

I am going to simplify the steps from that instruction page (Getting Started with Product Advertising API Page) and try to include some screenshots I took as I followed the instructions – until I get the Access Key ID and Secret Access Key.

Steps to Get your Amazon Access Key ID and Amazon Secret Access Key

Step 1: Become an Amazon Associate

This post assumes that you are already an Amazon associate, but in case you aren’t yet, here are links to help you become an Amazon associate:

a. http://www.wikihow.com/Become-an-Amazon-Associate
b. https://associates.amazon.ca/welcome/topic/tools/ref=amb_link_497731762_2

Also, if you want to be an affiliate for other Amazon locales, you would have to sign up for accounts there too. For example, if you are an Amazon.com affiliate, you are NOT automatically an amazon.ca, amazon.co.uk, amazon.jp affiliate. You would have to sign up in each one of those locales.

Step 2: Register as a Product Advertising API developer using your Amazon Associates Account

Step a. Login to your Amazon account ( https://affiliate-program.amazon.com/home )

Step b. On the Navigation Menu, choose the ‘Tools’ dropdown, then go to Product Advertising API

Associates Dropdown Product API
Choose the ‘Tools’ , then go to Product Advertising API

Step c. Choose Sign Up Now.

Sign Up Now
Sign Up Now

Step d. I used the same email address as my Amazon Associates account to sign in.

Step e. I followed the steps to register – then gave them my information.

Step f. Then, I got to the Success page,

Step g. In the (Amazon API) Success page, choose Manage Your Account.

According to Amazon, they automatically create an AWS account for us and that we will use our AWS (Amazon Web Services) account security credentials to make calls to the Product Advertising API. Anyway,

Manage Your Account
Choose Manage Your Account

Step h. On the Manage Your Account page, choose the AWS Security Credentials Console link.

AWS Security Credentials Console link
Choose AWS Security Credentials Console link

Step i. Sign in to your AWS account with the same email address and password you used to register for the Product Advertising API (for me, it’s the same as my amazon affiliate account email address).

Step j. On the pop-up message, Choose Get Started with IAM Users. IAM stands for Identity and Access Management.

choose Get Started with IAM Users
choose Get Started with IAM Users

In the following steps, you will create an IAM user and then give the user permission to access the Product Advertising API.

Step k. Create User: Choose ADD User

IAM ADD User
Choose ADD User

Step l. Next, Type a user name (type any user name you would like)
m. For Access Type, check Programmatic access in the small check box.

Type user name and choose Programmatic access
Type a user name and choose
Programmatic access For Access Type

As you can see, in the programmatic access section, it says that it enables an access key ID and secret access key for the Amazon Web Services (AWS) API (Application Program Interface).

Step n. Click Next: Permission

Click Next
Click Next

Step o. Click Attach existing policies directly.

Click Attach existing policies directly
Click Attach existing policies directly

Step p. Click Create policy. This opens a new page.

Click Create policy
Click Create policy

Step q.  choose Select across the ‘Create Your Own Policy’ section.

Select Create Your Own Policy
Select Create Your Own Policy

Step r. On the Review Policy page, for Policy Name, type a name such as MyfirstAmazonAPIPolicy. (Note: You may choose a different policy name, ‘MyfirstAmazonAPIPolicy’ is just an example). (screenshot below)

Step s. For Description, type a description – the Amazon tutorial page suggests something like: “This policy provides full access to all operations of the Product Advertising API.” (screenshot below)

Step t. For Policy Document, copy and paste the following policy in the field.

 {
 "Version": "2012-10-17",
 "Statement": [
 {
 "Effect": "Allow",
 "Action": "ProductAdvertisingAPI:*",
 "Resource": "*"
 }
 ]
 }
Type your Policy Name, Policy Description, and Paste
Type your Policy Name, Policy Description, and Paste the above policy

Step u. Choose Validate Policy and then choose Create Policy.

The Policy you created is now listed
The Policy you created is now listed.

Now, we have to attach the Policy we created to our User (by going back to the Add User page).

Step v. Return to the Add user page ..  this is where it became confusing for me… I realized that we would have to Click on Add User again and give it permissions which would be – applying the policy we just created to the user. Setting user permissions equals applying the policy we created. (screenshot below)

Once we click on Add user, the user we created before will be shown in the user name bar, or you can also create a user if it is not shown.

IAM ADD User
Choose ADD User

Click on Next: Permission. (blue button on the bottom right)

add user again
After clicking on Add User

Step w. Choose ‘Attach existing policies directly’, then for the Policy type, search and choose the policy that you created. Choose Refresh if the policy doesn’t appear.

Search for the Policy Created
Search for the Policy you Created

Step x. You will be shown the success page where you can download the csv files containing your Amazon Access Key ID and Amazon Secret Access Key: You can also copy your Amazon Access Key ID and Amazon Secret Access Key but it will only be shown one time so it would be good to download the csv file so you have a back up copy in case you install the plugin in another website.

success page csv
Success Page with CSV containing Access Key ID and Secret Access Key

When you go to the user section, you will see it active with one active access key.

User Active with Access Keys
User Active with Access Keys
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