Small businesses make a big splash on the new Amazon Storefronts

By Rieva Lesonsky

Owners of small and midsized businesses just got more incentive than ever to sell their products on Amazon.  According to Vox, the newly launched Amazon Storefronts is offering customers access to over 1 million products sold by 20,000 American SMBs. The online marketplace says it will be adding more products and businesses to Storefronts in the future.

Hundreds of thousands of small businesses sell on Amazon, but Amazon Storefronts offers an opportunity to stand out from the crowd. Storefronts are broken into niches: For example, the “Curated Collections” section includes industries such as back-to-school, Halloween, beauty and grooming, pet supplies, home, grocery, toys, electronics, books, jewelry and more.

Another section allows shoppers to “Meet the Business Owners” and features Artisans, Family-Focused Businesses, Women-Owned Businesses and Innovator-Makers.

Vox says this is an attempt by Amazon to be seen as a “friendly corporate giant” thatencourages entrepreneurship and the revitalization of small businesses.”

According to Amazon’s Small Business Impact Report, SMBs selling on Amazon have created over 900,000 jobs. And when you land on the homepage of Amazon Storefronts you’re greeted with the information that half of everything sold on Amazon comes from SMBs.

This isn’t the first time Amazon has spotlighted small businesses. Three years ago, it created “Handmade at Amazon,” which Vox says is “a much-smaller curation of 80,000 artisan-made products from 5,000 sellers in 60 countries.” Last year, Vox reports, “Amazon expanded Handmade with a section dedicated specifically to gifts.”

However, Amazon Storefronts is open to a much wider range of business owners than Handmade at Amazon. Vox notes that Amazon defines small businesses as those with fewer than 100 employees and less than $50 million in annual revenue, and midsized businesses as those with fewer than 1,000 employees and less than $1 billion in annual revenue—hardly a home-based Etsy designer.

If you sell products online, you might want to check out Amazon Storefronts—but don’t abandon your ecommerce site or other online marketplace, either. There’s no reason you can’t capture more customers by having storefronts in multiple places.

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Photo courtesy Amazon.