Amazon will begin displaying sellers' business name and address on their Amazon.com seller profile page, the company said on Wednesday. The new practice will go into effect on September 1, 2020.
Amazon said for individuals, it would display individuals' name and address.
An Amazon spokesperson provided EcommerceBytes with the following statement:
"Over the years, we have developed many ways for sellers to share more about their business, including through features like the seller profile pages, "Store
" pages for brand owners, and Handmade "Maker Profile
" pages. These features help customers learn more about sellers' businesses and their products. Beginning September 1, we will also display sellers' business name and address on their Amazon.com seller profile page to ensure there is a consistent baseline of seller information to help customers make informed shopping decisions."
In an email sent to sellers, Amazon said the practice is consistent with seller profile pages in Amazon stores in Europe, Japan, and Mexico.
Many sellers applauded the move. "It is about time," wrote one seller. "The fact that sellers can hide behind a Seller Name has always baffled me."
But many sellers also voiced a range of questions and concerns
with the new practice. A seller pointed to a profile on the UK where the practice is already in force, showing that the "Business name" is the entity that owns the account, which may be different from the "Display name" (store name).
Home-based businesses were particularly concerned about the marketplace publishing their names and home addresses. One seller said they were concerned about "lunatic customers and evil competitors."
Media outlets picked up the story and said the move was likely made due to pressure on marketplaces to fight counterfeit goods. The Washington Post (owned by Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos) wrote, "Listing names and address could curb sales of dangerous and counterfeit items, and comes less than three weeks before CEO Jeff Bezos will testify before Congress."
Numbers 8 and 9 on the list were "Pre-Sale Identification of Third-Party Sellers" and "Establish Marketplace Seller ID."
The report was titled, "Combating Trafficking in Counterfeit and Pirated Goods Report to the President of the United States" and was dated January 24, 2020.
Given the administration's stance along with Amazon's new policy, sellers may be left wondering if other marketplaces such as eBay and Etsy will be next.