by Brian Solis

Paypal has long dominated the online payment category thanks to the overwhelming adoption and support from ebay community, not to mention the fuel stemming from the acquisition. Now internet retailer Amazon hopes to extend it business model into a global commerce and business network.

Amazon introduced its Flexible Payment Services (FPS) to the Amazon Web Services family, which includes the popular Simple Storage Service (S3) and the Elastic Computing Cloud (EC2).

Whereas Paypal was driven by sellers and ultimately buyers on ebay, Amazon is empowering its customers to manage transactions outside of its behemoth network to buy goods and services from other businesses that in turn, support the new Amazon payment system.

In the grander scheme of things, Amazon is positioning itself as the premier, one-stop solution for providing small businesses with everything they need to run their shop on the Web.

Amazon Flexible Payment Service is a complete payment platform moving money from person to person and also keeping track of account balances over time. Vendors will appreciate the ability to accumulate charges on a bill, and have the customer only pay once, at the end of the month, with only one transaction fee.

Currently the top story on TechMeme

This is an interesting story as Amazon has the ability to rock PayPal’s world. It’s user base is gigantic and more importantly, loyal.

Amazon FPS is currently in Beta and open to developers/businesses looking to integrate the new payment system.
Freshbooks, among a few other companies, was selected by Amazon to showcase the new system.

Freshbooks integrated Amazon FPS to provide money transmitter services and payment processor selection for its small to midsize business customers. FreshBooks customers can now be paid quickly and easily by their clients through their clients’ existing accounts. Because people only have to set up a payment method once with Amazon, payments become hassle-free. Since many clients of FreshBooks customers are also customers, this new payment option will help FreshBooks customers get paid faster.

More at the Amazon and Freshbooks blogs.

About the Author:

Brian Solis

Brian Solis is principal at Altimeter Group, a research-based advisory firm. Solis is globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders and published authors in new media. A digital analyst, sociologist, and futurist, Solis has studied and influenced the effects of emerging media on business, marketing, publishing, and culture. His current book, Engage, is regarded as the industry reference guide for businesses to build and measure success in the social web.

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    no imageVictor Karamalis (Who am I?)4 August 2007 3:59 pm

    Jeff Besos hinted that this was coming during his keynote at the Web 2.0 Conference in March. Although very ingenious in bundling these services, it is not clear whether this will bring value to its small business customers. The old adage ‘if you build it, they will come’ does not work in the Internet as attested by countless dead websites in years past. Customers still have to see if there is a product/service that is worthy of their patronage (and just as importantly, their dinero).

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