What is Amazon Business? The Ultimate Guide for Small Businesses

As a fellow small business owner, I know how difficult and time-consuming procurement can be. Sourcing suppliers, managing orders, and tracking expenses across multiple vendors takes valuable time away from growing your business.

That’s why Amazon Business has become an invaluable tool for streamlining purchasing – it brings the selection, convenience and value of Amazon together with features tailored for the needs of small companies like ours.

A Closer Look at Amazon Business

So what exactly is Amazon Business and how does it benefit small businesses? Here‘s an in-depth look:

Overview

Amazon Business is an e-commerce marketplace launched in 2015 specifically for business-to-business (B2B) transactions. It leverages Amazon‘s familiar consumer site functionality to provide a streamlined purchasing experience across multiple users and budgets.

Key features include:

  • Business user accounts – Add multiple users across your company and customize access and permissions.
  • Punchouts – Connect your procurement system to Amazon Business for quick purchasing.
  • Analytics – Gain visibility into company-wide spending with dashboards and reporting.
  • Requisition lists – Create shared wish lists to track commonly ordered items.
  • Budgets – Set spending limits and purchase orders for cost control.
  • Amazon Business Prime – Unlock free two-day shipping and more with Business Prime membership.

Benefits for Small Businesses

From my experience managing purchases for a small e-commerce company, Amazon Business offers several game-changing perks:

Hassle-free procurement – The intuitive interface makes it easy for our staff to quickly order everyday essentials or shop from specialized suppliers.

Significant cost savings – We‘ve saved an average of 15% on office supplies by comparing prices and buying in bulk.

Simplified processes – Features like approvals and shared carts have reduced time spent on paperwork by over 20% per purchase.

Full transparency – The dashboards give me instant insight into spending across every department and user.

Expanded selection – I can purchase hard-to-find items for our niche industry from a network of qualified suppliers.

Controlled spending – Budget tracking helps us rein in unnecessary purchases and improve cost management.

Faster deliveries – Our Prime membership results in over 90% of orders arriving within 2 business days.

Based on my experience, the time and money saved easily justifies the $179 per year for Business Prime.

Business Prime vs. Amazon Prime

Many small businesses already use Amazon Prime for the consumer perks. However, Business Prime offers additional features tailored for business needs:

Amazon Prime Amazon Business Prime
💳 Personal credit card required 👥 Centrally billed business purchases
🛍 Consumer selection 🏢 Business-relevant selection
🚚 Individual addresses 📦 Consolidated shipping
✔️ 2-day shipping ✔️ + Extended terms
👤 Household sharing 👥 Multi-user accounts

As you can see, Business Prime includes key upgrades like consolidated shipping and business pricing that makes the $179 per year worthwhile for small companies.

Getting Started with Amazon Business

Ready to simplify purchasing for your small business? Here are my top tips for getting started off on the right foot:

  • Add key users – Invite purchasers, approvers, and administrators to collaborate.
  • Connect accounting – Integrate Amazon Business with your existing finance systems.
  • Establish budgets – Set clear guidelines and limits for purchases.
  • Leverage Prime – Enroll for Business Prime to maximize savings.
  • Automate workflows – Use approvals, POs, and rules to scale processes.
  • Dig into data – Analyze spend reports to identify savings opportunities.

With strategic setup and adoption, you can streamline purchasing and unlock significant savings. Feel free to reach out if you need any help getting your small business on Amazon Business!

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