Amazon’s recent launch of Home Services is another big change in the consumer marketplace. It’ll allow people to order professional services online, from plumbers to interior decorators. Many professionals see this as a way for Amazon to present yet another highly competitive advantage for themselves. This is on account of there being no fee to register with Amazon Home Services, therein competing with similar digital service registries like Yelp.
Aside from industry competition, local businesses need to be aware of Amazon Home Services. As it stands, the potential to gain a whole new client line is too lucrative to ignore. But it’s a new and complex program to be part of that not everyone is going to be able to use.
To get an understanding of this, consider the following points:
Involvement of Small- and Medium-Sized Businesses
The new Home Services function is in its initial stages, so there is a formal application process for it. Amazon requests that you apply online. They also ask that you provide your business license and insurance information; a background check is also likely. Note that Amazon is selective; not all those that apply are accepted. If you are accepted, however, you benefit from the value of this exclusivity.
Some of the Benefits
The benefit of being part of Amazon is obvious: the number of people you’ll be exposed to. It’s estimated that over 80 million people engage with Amazon. Amazon Home Services puts all of its users in front of these millions of people, as Home Services is connected directly to Amazon Prime. Here, people put in queries into Amazon as they would into Google, and that query matches to the relevant services.
The Craigslist Factor
A good contrast to Amazon Home Services is Craigslist. On one hand, it’s a free online community that people can use to share information about goods, services, and information. On the other hand, you can’t necessarily buy or schedule a service from it. Amazon has now put both of these components together, giving people the opportunity to communicate and solicit business in conjunction with its own established credibility.
The New Local Layer
If you’re going to be part of Amazon Home Services, make sure you consider how it will evolve over time. It’s new and therefore not completely tested for success. If it proves to be a success, it’s understandable that Amazon Home Services will change local retail the way it changed regular retail through e-commerce. In essence, be ready to work in a completely new format that is yet to change.
Amazon Home Services is still in its infancy, so information surrounding how retailers can get maximum results from it is yet to be obtained. Many analysts predict that you will get the best results from:
Doing content marketing by providing news and information about your services.
Getting customer testimonials and reviews posted that will boost rankings. As of this writing, anyone can access Home Services and read or post reviews.
Already having a strong online presence and established reputation that will help you get accepted into Amazon Home Services immediately.
If these aspects are already working to your advantage, it’s expected you’ll be able to work Amazon Home Services into your business dealings fairly quickly.
Whether or not you decide to try out Amazon Home Services, be aware of the change in consumer service provisions—even without the influence of the Internet. Apparently, even Google plans to offer something similar in the near future. If you’re a service retailer and aren’t marketing online, it’s time to get started. Your future success depends on it. Thankfully, there are strategic tools to help you out.