A stack of 14K gold filled and sterling silver hammered rings from Handmade at Amazon. Photo: Courtesy of Handmade at Amazon
Etsy’s been the go-to portal for artisanal goods for nearly a decade, but that’s not stopping Amazon from encroaching into the startup’s territory. On Thursday, the e-commerce monolith launched “Handmade at Amazon,” a spinoff site that features handmade products ranging from jewelry and artwork to furniture, kitchen supplies, home décor, and bedding.
Each artisan can create an interactive profile including pictures, a map to distinguish where the product is made, and a personal video, which personalizes the goods by putting faces behind them. “Knowing an item has a unique story behind it creates a personal experience that customers have told us makes owning handmade items special,” Amazon’s Peter Faricy said. As of now, there are nearly 80,000 shoppable (and customizable) items from all 50 states and 60 countries. Many of the artisans were found by personal visits to craft fairs across the country.
The introduction of Handmade adds yet another niche experience to the e-tailer’s extensive marketplace. It has seen success in catering to specific markets such as the Kindle, Amazon Fashion, Amazon Home Services, which offers handyman services, Amazon Collectibles and Fine Art. Handmade at Amazon was added to the repertoire, Faricy explained, because the company recognized from search queries such as handmade and hand crafted that customers were after these types of items.
Amazon Prime, the service that offers members upgraded shipping for an annual fee, will be available for more than 600 products, but because many are made-to-order and personalized, the option will not be available. But, as Faircy, pointed out, “customers don’t mind waiting for products like this.”