Amazon promoted its Handmade marketplace on its corporate blog on Wednesday, and made it easier for shoppers to find local and regional artisans. “To help connect customers with local small businesses across the U.S., Amazon Handmade, our store for Makers selling handcrafted products, has launched a new shopping experience featuring a curated collection of items from U.S.-based Makers,” it wrote.
Many people may be unaware of Amazon’s Etsy-style marketplace, but Amazon Handmade will celebrate its 5-year anniversary in October.
The new “shopping experience” can be found on this landing page on Amazon.com that encourages shoppers to support local Makers. The page allows shoppers to browse by region: Pacific, Rocky Mountain, Midwest, Northeast, Southwest, and Southeast.
While Amazon wouldn’t disclose the number of sellers listing on its handmade marketplace, it said in Wednesday’s announcement, “since the beginning of the year Amazon Handmade has seen a 100% uptick in new Makers in its U.S. store compared to this time last year.”
Amazon also said Makers were typically micro-businesses – individuals working from home or companies small enough to continue operations while honoring social distancing guidelines. “Both new and existing Makers are turning to Amazon Handmade as a way to keep their company running online, and reach new customers during the COVID-19 pandemic,” it said.
As for Etsy, it reported especially strong sales in April after it encouraged sellers to list cloth face masks in response to CDC recommendations about slowing the spread of COVID-19.