Amazon is almost taking on a Google-esque mindset as the company continues to expand into every type of market imaginable. The latest news is that Amazon, believe it or not, will be selling its own line of diapers and baby wipes.
Amazon's foray into the world of diapers will be dubbed Amazon Elements and, for the time being, will only be available to Prime members. Indeed, many of Amazon's moves as of late seem centered on increasing its number of Prime subscribers, the company's $99/year plan that includes free shipping, video streaming and more.
Amazon Elements, as the name subtly implies, will focus on premium products with "transparent origins" and will soon expand beyond diapers and baby wipes, though it remains unclear what future Elements products might be introduced next. The upside for Amazon here is that by cutting out the middle man, it can offer its own products at a lower price point than the competition.
As for the "transparent origins" label, that's meant to convey that each product will contain detailed information about each ingredient used in the manufacturing process. The goal here is to allow consumers to make more ethically informed purchasing decisions.
By working directly with a manufacturer, Amazon will be able to price the brand aggressively, with a 40-count package of diapers starting at $7.99. That works out to about 19 cents a diaper, compared to competitor prices that mostly range from 24 cents to 34 cents.
As a result, some people will view the launch as a shot across the bow at the big diaper brands, Huggies and Pampers, that sell their products on Amazon. Sellers on Amazon already gripe that Amazon sells the same products as they do. Now it is building a direct relationship with a supplier that allows it to undercut some of its own partners in a more significant way.
Amazon here finds itself in a tricky position, somewhat similar, albeit on a smaller scale, to what Google experiences when it sometimes competes against its Android partners. Still, there's not much leverage a global brand like Huggies can wield here.
Ultimately, it'll be interesting to see if Amazon sees an uptick in Prime subscribers as a result of its new Elements lineup. If so, expect to see Amazon focus even more on delivering its own products to customers exclusively via Prime.