Apr 28, 2015 · 1 minute

Amazon has introduced a new service to sell essential supplies to businesses by offering them a dedicated customer support channel, tax exemption features, discounted products, and free two-day shipping on "tens of millions" of items.

Bloomberg Business reports that the service, which has been appropriately dubbed Amazon Business, is chasing the $1 trillion corporate-spending market. And it will do so by taking advantage of the same things that appeal to consumers.

Amazon has found success by offering a wide variety of items with low prices that can be shipped for free -- or at least for less than it often costs from other sellers -- and that don't require shoppers to visit multiple brick-and-mortar stores.

Those features are just as appealing to small businesses as they are to consumers. As Bloomberg Business explains in its report on the service:

Now, with Amazon Business, the Seattle-based company is seeking to cater to clients such as Tulsa Community College, which is using Amazon to order test tubes, basketballs, office supplies and other goods, instead of having employees fetch them from local retailers or specialty sellers.

The day-to-day needs of the 15,000-student school translate into about $10,000 in orders a month, a number that keeps growing as more staff embrace e-commerce to buy things they need, according to Terry Lastinger, assistant director of purchasing at Tulsa Community College. Amazon's consumer market was built on the same principles. The main difference is that businesses can spend $10,000 or more each month; I suspect most of Amazon's ordinary customers aren't spending anywhere near as much.

That, and the fact that Amazon Business will offer items that aren't (or can't be) sold through Amazon's main marketplace, should explain why Amazon thinks it can dominate this market. The company already made life easier for ordinary people, and that's made it one of the most important tech companies in the world.

All of which means I was wrong when I said that Amazon wants to take control over your house. The company's ambitions are much larger than that. It wants to sell everything to everyone, regardless of whether they're spending $5 on a pack of toilet paper or a grand on new beakers for a school's science program.

[illustration by Brad Jonas]