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Amazon Touts Success of Its Etsy-Killer, Handmade

May 12, 2016

Last fall, Amazon debuted its Etsy-competitor, Handmade, its e-commerce website selling artisan goods. Six months later, the e-commerce giant is already touting the early successes of its new vertical while expanding to new categories.

Similar to Etsy, Amazon Handmade hawks jewelry, home decor, artwork, stationery and party supplies, kitchen and dining items, and furniture. Sellers must apply to Amazon, and the e-commerce giant will vet these items to ensure they are, indeed, made by hand.

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On Thursday, Amazon boasted sales jumped more that 50% leading up to Mother's Day last week. Amazon is also expanding inventory into new categories, including toys, games, and other miscellaneous items for babies. Also since last autumn's debut, the number of items on Handmade has blossomed by 300% to more than 400,000 handcrafted items. By comparison, Etsy says it adds millions of new items per month.

But Amazon's trump card is being able to deliver these handmade goods faster that Etsy artisans. Amazon offers many Handmade items through its Prime Subscription program, which for $99 per year, gives users guaranteed free two-day shipping and one-hour delivery on certain orders in addition access to streamed movies, TV shows, and Amazon’s original productions.

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Amazon added that it has added thousands of Prime eligible items, and has seen a 100% increase in artisans using the company's fulfillment service so that their items can be delivered to Prime customers in the two day window.

The benefit for artisans is access to a demographic of customers who are known to spend more. According to the Wall Street Journal, Prime customers spend as much as double on purchases on Amazon.com to what non-Prime customers spend in a year.

Etsy has been testing a same-day delivery pilot in New York City but hasn't expanded the test more broadly.

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