My Queue

There are no Videos in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any video to save to your queue.

There are no Articles in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any article to save to your queue.

There are no Podcasts in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any podcast episode to save to your queue.

You're not following any authors.

Click the Follow button on any author page to keep up with the latest content from your favorite authors.

Technology / 3-D Printing

Customized Ecommerce Meets 3-D Printing in Amazon's New Online Store

Senior Entrepreneurship Writer at CNBC
2 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Desperately seeking a bobble head doll that looks just like your friend or frenemy?

Thanks to developments in 3-D printing and the ever expanding reach of Amazon, you can have one delivered to your doorstep.

The ecommerce giant has just launched an online store where customers can design 3-D printable toys, jewelry, home decor and other sorts of miscellaneous tchotchkes. For example, you can customize your own 3-D printable bobble head dolls. Amazon isn’t actually making the products; the objects will be created by one of several third-party 3-D printing companies. (If you’re particularly intrigued by the bobble heads, Brooklyn, N.Y.-based Mixee Labs makes them.)

Related: This Gadget Will Let You 3-D Print in Nutella

Customers will be given templates for a range of products and then have the option of tinkering with the color, design and other elements. The goods can range anywhere from about $40 to $100.

The new online store is at the intersection of two emerging trends: personalization of the shopping experience and an explosion of the adoption of and use of 3-D printing technology. Not only does 3-D printing make possible personalized bobble head dolls -- which, make no mistake, we think are cool -- but from a corporate perspective, 3-D printing is overhauling the way that products are prototyped, tested and manufactured.

Related: This Company Makes 3-D Printed Headphones That Perfectly Fit Your Ears

“When you take into consideration the investment needed for manufacturing products, 3-D printing offers a cost effective alternative that benefits customers by limitless product options,” said Clément Moreau, co-founder of 3-D printing company and Sculpteo, in Amazon’s announcement of the news.

The customization shop is not Amazon’s first step into the 3-D printing market. In March, the Seattle-based ecommerce juggernaut dipped its toe into the space with a small marketplace for customers to buy nifty consumer goods made through 3-D printing.

With 3-D printing emerging as an industry that could revolutionize American manufacturing, companies are cashing in. Staples and MakerBot have each taken recent steps to make 3-D printers more accessible to the average consumer and one company in Canada has even created a device that will let you 3-D print in Nutella.

Related: No Sci-Fi Here: Your Own Personal Robot Is Coming

Emerging Markets Are the Next Frontier of 3D Printing