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Introducing Amazon Business Solutions for Small Businesses

Announcing the launch of Amazon Business Solutions for Small Businesses – a one-stop shop for the items you need to keep your business humming and the software tools to improve your business purchasing.

Introduction

The global pandemic changed the lives of people and the operations of businesses in ways we have never imagined. Small businesses have been particularly impacted because, unlike their larger counterparts, they don’t necessarily have the financial cushion or the resources to adapt to disruptions of such magnitude. Small businesses have observed one or more of these shifts: 1) demand has cratered resulting in loss of revenue (e.g. hospitality), 2) demand through certain channels have increased rapidly (e.g. online) applying pressure on small businesses to adapt, 3) supply disruptions have impacted the ability of small businesses to offer products and services. The Federal Reserve predicted that business exit rates between March 2020 and February 2021 in the US were one-quarter to one-third above normal. In absolute numbers, they estimated 200,000 business closures above normal during this period.[1]

Despite the seemingly dire situation 69 percent of the small businesses are optimistic about their future.[2] In the face of a potentially once-in-a-lifetime disruption, these businesses have shown immense resilience as they have changed their businesses to accommodate government restrictions and customer concerns (increased online selling, smaller venue capacity, embracing digital purchasing etc.). Amazon Business has adapted as well to meet the evolving needs of small businesses by launching a dedicated resource hub.

We are today announcing the launch of Amazon Business Solutions for Small Businesses– a one-stop shop for not only the items you need to keep your business humming but also for software tools to help setup your purchasing infrastructure for the future. In our conversations with small businesses, we understand that their needs from a purchasing standpoint fall into two primary buckets: saving time and saving money. Here is how our Solutions will help meet your needs.

Save Time

At small businesses like yours, you and your employees wear multiple hats. You and your staff are both strategizers and executors and have to balance the responsibilities of growing your business with getting what you need to keep your business running. There are days when you wish you could spend less time on purchasing and more time serving customers. Both you and your employees would rather focus on high-value activities that help grow the business rather than spending time purchasing for your business. Amazon Business helps you and your employees save time by combining the familiar shopping experience of Amazon with business-specific functionalities and discounts.   

We translate the best practices we've developed in serving consumers through Amazon.com, into a frictionless and customized online experience for small businesses like yours. Our machine learning technology smartly recognizes your needs and makes personalized recommendations that can help save time in searching for items that you might need. Small businesses like yours do not have the time to negotiate contracts with multiple suppliers. Hence, you can leverage Amazon Business’ wide selection to get what you need for work all in one place. You can access Amazon Business at your desk or on-the-go. If the nature of your work requires you to be away from your desk, you can access Amazon Business through the mobile app and get what you need to keep your business running.

“Amazon has allowed us to purchase those items without having to get a national vendor; we would literally need hundreds of vendors to cover all these categories. We have been and we continue to be pleased with this.” - Kevin Turner, Vice President of Supply Chain, Five Star Senior Living

With flexible work options (remote and in-office and changing hours of operations) being the order of the day, you can customize your delivery preferences by updating the addresses to which you want items shipped and providing the days and times during which you can receive shipments to avoid delays. Additionally, with our paid annual membership program called Business Prime, you can even get FREE Same-Day Delivery on eligible orders, One-Day Shipping on millions of items, and unlimited Two-Day Shipping on over 100 million items.

“Not only is it easier to find and order items, but the convenience of having them shipped directly to the office can’t be overstated — most of the time without any shipping charges.”Sheila Davis, Senior Vice President of Area Operations, Always Best Care

Frequently, as a business owner, you might be handling most—if not all—aspects of the business, and one of the most time-consuming aspects is accounting. With Business Prime, we now help integrate your Amazon Business and QuickBooks accounts to automate the process of reconciliation. This saves time and improves the accuracy of your accounting.

“While I used to upload my Amazon Business receipts and enter them manually, my transactions are now automatically imported which allows me to focus on creativity and delivering for my customers. It’s at least a few hours a month in time savings, and it is just so simple." – April Preuss, Owner, Teton Wood Blooms

We also offer features such as Business Lists and Recurring Deliveries that further help save time on purchases. You can create a shopping list for your business and share it with your employees. They can then purchase and reorder from this list rather than spending time discovering and buying the same items repeatedly. They can also place their ordering on auto-pilot by setting up Recurring Deliveries on items that they frequently need for work.

"We save valuable time with Amazon Business. We've been able to streamline procurement, especially for recurring purchases, efficiently manage employee access to our account, and more easily generate reports we need to do our jobs better." - Jen Kawahara, Head of Finance, Airtable

To sum it up, purchasing from Amazon Business is as simple and convenient as purchasing for your personal needs using Amazon.com. You can even switch between your personal and business accounts on Amazon so that you keep your personal purchases distinct from business purchases.

Save money

For small businesses, cash is king. With capital scarce, we recognize that it is critical for small businesses to save money wherever they can and optimize cash flow. Consolidating the purchase of supplies through a single store such as Amazon Business helps small businesses like yours save money through business-only pricing of up to 10 percent on 53 million items. We negotiate with our selling partners on your behalf and provide you with competitive pricing across many suppliers on essential items you need to run your business.

Your business can also get a 5 percent discount on eligible items (and a 10 percent discount if those items are fulfilled by Amazon) by setting up Recurring Deliveries. We also recognize that shipping costs can add up for small businesses. To ease this burden, we offer free shipping on eligible orders over $25. In addition, we offer Amazon Business Analytics to help you optimize spend by identifying past purchasing trends and demonstrating ways to save in the future.

“Amazon Business does a fantastic job of showing us where our big savings are and how to maximize them. It saves us time and effort on sourcing and vendor selection. We spot-check prices to confirm we’re really getting great savings.” - Chris Tiesman, Chief Financial Officer, CSAT Solutions

You can save even more with our Business Prime membership as we offer free shipping on eligible orders and member-only discounts. If you have been using Amazon.com for business purchases, we make this transition to Business Prime easier with a special discounted membership called Business Prime Duo at $69/year for one user. With Business Prime, it is not just about selection and pricing, it is also about smart purchasing. Small businesses recognize the impact purchasing has on their bottom-line. However, they don’t have the resources and bandwidth to analyze purchases to make informed decisions. Using Spend Visibility (available with Business Prime Essentials, Small, Medium, and Enterprise), you can analyze purchasing patterns with the help of visually appealing dashboards and make informed decisions.

You can also obtain additional value with your Business Prime membership through ancillary products and services such as:

Obtaining customer feedback: With meeting Customer expectations identified as a top growth constraint, we understand that you will want to obtain feedback from customers and address any pain points before it becomes too late. With your Business Prime membership, you can leverage a survey and analytics tool called Instant Customer Feedback (from Delighted by Qualtrics) to measure Customer sentiment and unlock vital insights.

Boosting online presence: If you want to beef up your online presence, you can take advantage of a 12-month free trial of the GoDaddy Websites + Marketing premium plan - up to $240 in value with Business Prime as well.

Improving cyber-security: In an increasingly connected world, cybersecurity is critical. A 2019 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report found that 43 percent of security breaches involved small businesses. Of those, 29 percent lost revenue and a 38 percent of those that lost revenue actually had more than a fifth of their revenue compromised. To mitigate a cyber-attacks on your business, you can access McAfee IT Incident Service with Business Prime at a 66 percent discount, with which you get defense against the latest malware/spyware/ransomware attacks, ability to send and receive sensitive emails and files with Virtual Private Network (VPN), five user password manager to generate secure passwords, and access to a full staff of tech experts standing by 24/7/365.

 “If somebody asked me about getting Business Prime, I would tell them it’s a necessity. There’s no reason not to have it on your account.”Matt LaForest, Director of IT, Jukin Media

To optimize cash flow, you can consider applying for a business credit card that offers extended payment terms. The Amazon Business American Express Card offers 60 Day payment terms on US purchases at Amazon Business, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Amazon.com, and Whole Foods Market. Card Members with eligible Prime memberships receive 90 Day payment terms with the Amazon Business Prime American Express Card (Terms apply).

In addition, Amazon Business offers eligible customers Pay by Invoice, which enables small businesses to buy now and pay later at no interest on 30-day payment terms. With Business Prime, you may be eligible for extended payment terms of 45 or 60 days. 

 

Conclusion

Amazon Business serves thousands of small businesses at every stage of their lifecycle – from early stage startup to a growth stage stabilizing small business. We are committed to helping small businesses like yours save costs and simplify buying so that you can focus on innovating on behalf of your Customers and growing your business. To help you with this mission we have introduced a tailored yet free toolkit called Amazon Business Solutions for Small Businesses. Get started by creating a free account and take advantage of this Solution.

"As a growing startup company, we have run into a number of pain points as we continue to expand. One of the most pressing was a rapidly growing vendor list, resulting in increased employee spending and visibility reduced with more transactions taking place. We worked with Amazon Business to set up a solution in a matter of days that created immediate time and cost savings for our team." Adam Cohen, Senior Manager - Finance & Accounting, Mason

 

[1] Crane, Leland D., Ryan A. Decker, Aaron Flaaen, Adrian Hamins-Puertolas, and Christopher Kurz (2021). “Business Exit During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Non-Traditional Measures in Historical Context,” Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2020-089r1. Washington: Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, https://doi.org/10.17016/FEDS.2020.089r1.

[2] Small and Medium Business Trends Report, Fourth Edition, Salesforce, August 2020.

 

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