Amazon is moving deeper into the business-to-business sector, following up 2012's launch of AmazonSupply with the newly unveiled Amazon Business and the more than 250 million products the marketplace offers.
While AmazonSupply aimed to offer commercial-grade supplies to business, Amazon Business delivers a marketplace that's much more like its primary storefront. Amazon Business replaces AmazonSupply and brings with it several perks to entice businesses to register accounts.
Amazon Business' marketplace seeks to serve as a comprehensive resource for businesses in need of everything from food service and hospitality equipment to products for building and maintaining labs and IT departments.
The new marketplace includes business-only products and prices with a free two-day shipping — on orders $49 and higher — and multi-seller listings as found in the storefront proper.
Amazon Business accounts can be set up for one person or multiple users, and more people can be added to them as needed. Organizations can make use of Amazon Business' purchasing tools to establish workflows for purchase approval and integrate third-party payment systems into their accounts.
Business customers have been asking for an online shopping experience similar to how they, as individuals, shop at home, stated Prentis Wilson, Amazon Business' vice president.
"Amazon Business delivers a new and expanded marketplace that brings the selection, convenience and value of Amazon to business customers, manufacturers and sellers with the additional selection, features and back-end integration businesses need to save time and money," stated Wilson.
There is, of course, more than one side to a transaction. On the other side of the counter, sellers stand to gain much more visibility with the launch of the new marketplace.
"Through Amazon Business, sellers can benefit from Amazon's e-commerce expertise, visibility for their full product catalog on an established online marketplace and greater access to business customers to grow sales," stated Amazon.
The launch of the new marketplace for businesses helps Amazon move deeper into B2B, a sector worth somewhere between $7.2 trillion and $8.2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Also, Amazon is in a good position to become a force in the market.
About 94 percent of business customers research products online before buying a business product. About 75 percent of business customers start their offline shopping online, according to a pair of reports Amazon cited.
"It's only the beginning for this new marketplace — we will continue to build out features in areas like product support, payments, shipping and pricing," said Wilson.