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Amazon unfurls its new Storefronts online store

Featured are products come from more than 20,000 U.S. businesses

Photo (c) Prykhodov - Getty Images
Amazon is debuting a new online store called “Amazon Storefronts” which directs the spotlight toward products from businesses based in the United States.

Amazon Storefronts will have everything you’d expect from the online shopping mecca. All told, there will be more nearly 20,000 businesses in all 50 U.S. states offering more than a million products from 27 product categories.

“We’ve created a custom, one-stop shopping experience for customers looking for interesting, innovative and high quality products from American businesses from all across the country,” said Nicholas Denissen, Vice President for Amazon.

“Amazon first invited businesses to sell on Amazon nearly two decades ago, and today, small and medium-sized businesses are a vital part of Amazon’s large selection and commitment to customers. We’re championing their success with this new store and a national advertising campaign featuring a successful Michigan business selling on Amazon to customers across the U.S. and worldwide.”

What the consumer will find

Once inside Amazon Storefronts, customers will find curated American collections from artisans and start-ups, plus a “Storefront of the Week” highlighting the faces and businesses behind the products.

“Since we started selling on Amazon in October 2016, our sales have nearly doubled. Due to our success, we have been able to hire new team members from our community, including full and part time jobs,” said Holly Rutt, co-founder of Little Flower Soap Co., the U.S. business owner featured in Amazon’s national TV ad pitching Storefronts.

“We believe that customers like to know the story behind what they’re buying. When there is worry about creating jobs, it’s reassuring for customers to know their purchases are helping sustain jobs in the U.S.”

American-based, not American-made

On its face, the initiative might be a tad misleading as to where the products are actually made. While the products need to be sold from a company based in the U.S., Amazon clarified in an email to ConsumerAffairs that “the products do not have to be made in the U.S.”

The word “fear” doesn’t seem to be in Amazon’s dictionary. From taking on the grocery world with its purchase of Whole Foods to taking on Etsy with Amazon Handmade and the pharmaceutical world with its acquisition of PillPack, the company has displayed incredible moxie, and this move is no different.

Given that half of everything sold on its main portal comes from small-to-medium sized businesses (SMBs), piggybacking on that metric and the pride of buying American-driven products is a definite plus -- not only for Amazon’s bank account but its persona and its place in the job-creation world, too.

Amazon estimates that SMBs selling on Amazon have created more than 900,000 jobs globally.

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