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How to set up purchasing to grow with your small business

Less time spent on purchasing means more time to grow your business. Find out how to maintain control over business expenses and set up a buying process that scales with the growth of your business—at every stage.

Small businesses are constantly challenged to do more with less. And if you’re like most small businesses, you and your employees must be wearing multiple hats. There are days when you wish you could spend less time on purchasing and more time serving customers. Fortunately, Amazon Business is helping small businesses like yours get what they need faster, so you can effectively manage purchasing every step of the way.  


What is Amazon Business and Business Prime?

Amazon Business simplifies buying for work. With a free Amazon Business account, you can shop from hundreds of thousands of sellers who offer business-specific products with business-only pricing. Plus, you get access to a suite of software solutions designed to help small businesses improve operations while saving time and money. 


Beyond the capabilities you get with an Amazon Business account, you can keep your organization moving forward with a Business Prime membership. With exclusive member-only benefits, Business Prime can help you adjust to changing customer needs, establish and improve your online presence, and gain financial flexibility. The benefits also extend beyond those associated with your Amazon Business account, so you can maintain your current operations and prepare for future growth.


Setting the foundation for growth—Reduce time-intensive tasks and optimize cash flow

Are you working on the business or in the business? For most small business owners, the answer is often both. You juggle executing strategic initiatives and bringing in new business, and amid this, you are likely spending time on other tasks, like restocking and replenishing items, answering calls, filing paperwork, and dealing with vendors. At Amazon Business, we’re helping customers create a foundation on which to scale their businesses in order to mitigate risk and support long-term growth. With business-specific features, vast product selection, and the familiar shopping experience on Amazon, you and your employees get more time back to focus on higher-value activities. 


Streamline buying and save time restocking business essentials. Don’t spend time on the same task twice. Automate your purchasing process and reduce the time spent searching and purchasing items that you buy frequently by creating business shopping lists and reordering from those lists. For example, create a shopping list for office supplies such as paper, pens, notebooks, and printer ink to quickly reorder and restock the office when needed. Or, if you’re growing and onboarding new employees, create a shopping list for new hires with everything they will need, like a PC, desktop monitor, and headset so they can be ready on day one. Creating a business list makes it easy to purchase products for your business by the brands you prefer.


Spend less time getting the things you need and more time on what matters. It’s not uncommon for small business owners to make weekly trips to the store to stock up on business essentials, but the product selection may be slim and the product they’re looking for out of stock. With Amazon Business, buyers can save up to 10 hours a week when they shift purchasing from brick-and-mortar stores to Amazon Business¹. Even more, you can customize delivery preferences on eligible orders by updating the addresses where you want items shipped and providing the days and times at which you can receive them. 


Business-only pricing and discounts. We work with vendors to provide competitive pricing on everything you need for your business. Consolidating the purchase of supplies through a single store such as Amazon Business helps small businesses like yours save money.

"As a fast-growing food brand, we can’t afford to have our teams spend time on things that don’t add value or help us grow. Amazon Business helps us spend less time restocking supplies, and more time getting the word out about Ocean’s Halo."

— Robert Mock, Co-Founder and CEO, Ocean's Halo

Separate your work and personal shopping.  As a small business, you’re unlikely to be always in front of your desktop or buying during traditional office hours. But this doesn’t mean you should have to sacrifice the same speed, selection, and convenience you’re used to  when shopping on a desktop. The Amazon Business app is your one-stop shop for finding and buying work supplies on the go. Browse products, access deals, create custom buying lists, approve orders, and complete  secure purchase right from your mobile phone or tablet. Available for Apple or Android devices; accounts are free, sign-up is easy.


Get the items you need, when you need them. When you become a Business Prime member, you unlock FREE Same-Day delivery on eligible orders, plus One-Day and Two-Day shipping on items.  

"Prime benefits we have witnessed since scaling AB through our organization is the real-time analytics that are available, as well as much staff time saved by not having to physically go to a brick-and-mortar location to procure small dollar items, making us much more productive, and the ability to provide detailed answers to management’s questions on our small dollar procurements."

— Michael Mathyk, Buyer, Calgary Public Library

Navigating growth—Maintain control and continue to optimize operations 

For small businesses, growth often comes with growing pains. In most cases, it feels like there are only two options—working long hours and asking your team to do the same—or sacrificing quality with a short-term solution. Neither is a great option. Since about 20% of U.S. small businesses fail within the first year, it’s important to keep spending in check. Business Prime members get access to innovative tools that work at the speed of your business—Spend Visibility, Guided Buying, and member-only offers—that are each powerful on their own, but when used together form a flywheel that can help you optimize costs.


Maintain control over spend and plan ahead.  As your business grows, so do your costs. Leverage Amazon Business Analytics to optimize spend by identifying purchasing trends and uncovering savings opportunities. With Business Prime, you can use Spend Visibility to better visualize spending patterns that will inform budgeting and buying decisions for your growing business.

“If somebody asked me about getting Business Prime, I would tell them it’s a necessity. There’s no reason not to have it on your account.”

— Matt LaForest, Director of IT, Jukin Media

Effectively manage a growing workforce. As your workforce grows, managing spend can become increasingly more complex. Easily manage employee spending and compliance by automatically steering employees to the right products or suppliers and identifying product categories that employees shouldn’t purchase with Guided Buying. A benefit of Business Prime, Guided Buying saves you and your employees time and helps you gain more control over managing spend. 


Amazon Business is focused on building new features and software solutions to make business buying as seamless as possible. 


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Agile Marketing Research

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics