An American Comeback on Amazon

One essential ingredient for Amazon’s success is the explosion of businesses based in China that sell products through its vast digital mall.

But starting more than a year ago, Chinese businesses have steadily been selling a smaller share of stuff that Americans buy on Amazon. Merchants based in the U.S. are gaining ground.

Experts told me that they didn’t have a satisfying explanation for this shifting balance of Amazon merchants in the U.S. and China. Nor could they say whether it’s a blip or a lasting reversal of what had been a long trend of growing market share for Chinese merchants.

At the moment, most shoppers wouldn’t notice that Chinese merchants are selling relatively less stuff on Amazon. And the change may be another example of unpredictable shifts in shopping prompted by the pandemic.