Consumers can already get almost any product they want via Amazon.com, but the company has extended its reach into the services sector.
Amazon Home Services connects consumers with professionals who provide services from voice lessons and yoga classes to house cleaning and general repair.
The new service also provides reviews and price estimates, and the quality of service is backed by a guarantee from Amazon.
“Amazon really wants to be the everything store,” said Tom Caporaso, CEO of Clarus Marketing Group, which builds programs such as FreeShipping.com and ReturnSaver.com. “And you’re really starting to see that extend into the home services marketplace. It’s interesting because it’s such a huge market.”
It’s a $630 billion industry, according to The Huffington Post.
Although Amazon officials are focusing on four metro areas-Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York City-there are a number of services available in more than 40 states, including Tennessee.
For example, near the 37402 ZIP code, services available include general repair, odd jobs and tech support.
Consumers can see what services are available nearby by entering their ZIP code here. More services will be added in coming days and months.
Amazon officials are working with professionals in each area, and 95 percent of offers are coming from small, local providers.
Local businesses can apply to be listed on Amazon Home Services by filling out a form here.
“If [you’re] a small service provider and you could get through the vetting process and get on the marketplace, it’s an opportunity to drive a lot of leads,” Caporaso said.
Caporaso said that Amazon seems to be trying to solve a problem for customers by touting speed and the Amazon stamp of approval.
And it might be a way for Amazon to gather data about shopping habits in an effort to get more business to the product side of the website, he also said.
Some sites, such as Angie’s List, offer a similar vetting process, but it costs money to access the recommendations. Click here to see a review of Amazon Home Services and Angie’s List from The Christian Science Monitor.
The fact that the service is free provides great added value, he also said.
“I think it will be well-received by customers,” he said.