MILWAUKEE — Over half of everything sold by Amazon comes from small businesses. The online retailer works with 7,600 small business owners or individuals in Wisconsin and the company hopes to partner with more. Milwaukee mom Ming Hwong connected with Amazon about four years ago.
"I originally started the business at home in my basement and I wanted to spend more time with my kids," said Ming Hwong.
Hwong is the owner of Doodle Hog, an arts and crafts company. She started by posting a picture of her daughter playing with her products on Amazon and it was an instant success.
"Two weeks later people from all over the country are buying it," said Ming Hwong.
Hwong focuses on coming up with new items and growing her brand.
"You focus on your strengths," said Hwong.
She pays Amazon to handle the logistics.
"Amazon takes care of the warehousing. Amazon takes care of the shipping to your customers and returns from your customers," said Hwong.
Hwong has three full-time employees and a remote team made up of a lot of work at home moms in Southeast Wisconsin.
"It's a great feeling I mean I'm happy with how much we've grown so far and I'm excited to grow more next year, expand my team," said Hwong.
Joel Sider with Amazon said small businesses have options when partnering with Amazon. Individuals can pay $1 per transaction. If you sell more than 40 items a month there's a monthly rate option.
"With Amazon, as you can probably imagine, you gain reach and access to an enormous customer base," said Joel Sider.
Amazon plans to put $15 billion towards helping selling partners. The company is hosting a Small Business Academy in Milwaukee, only the second in the nation, December 13. Hwong is one of three Wisconsin business owners who will talk about using Amazon for business. The event is at the Miller Room (910 East Michigan Street in Milwaukee) from 10:00 a.m.-12:00 pm. The event is free, but you do need to register here.