This article appeared in the September 2016 issue of the Georgia's Cities newspaper.
After a million requests for a list of products manufactured in Georgia, Jason Moss, CEO of the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance, now has solutions to please both general consumers and manufacturers. And he offers a challenge.
The solution for manufacturers is the 2016 Georgia Manufacturing Directory. This directory is focused on business-to-business commerce, and highlights the 175 GMA members who are working together to support this grassroots movement. Not only does it list manufacturers, but it also includes supporting companies and suppliers who understand the special needs faced by manufacturers. On August 17, the Directory made the Amazon “Best Seller” list in multiple categories. It can be purchased online at the new BuyFromGeorgia website, or through Amazon.
For consumers, it’s the BuyFromGeorgia website (www.BuyFromGeorgia.com
). According to a recent Consumer Reports survey, almost 8 in 10 American consumers say they’d rather buy an American-made product than an imported one. That being the case, wouldn’t it make sense to make this process as simple as possible?
For the past three years, Gov. Nathan Deal has presented Moss and Georgia Manufacturing Alliance leaders a proclamation declaring June as “Buy from Georgia Month” to increase awareness of the many products made in our state. Now there’s a tool that serves year-round highlighting Georgia-made consumer products.
Although the BuyFromGeorgia product list is not all-encompassing or 100 percent accurate, it’s a great starting place. The next challenge is to add more Georgia-made products. The companies in cities will benefit from being listed on the website. If they have products that are manufactured in Georgia and for sale on Amazon, the manufacturing alliance want to know about them. They simply need to go to the “Suggest Items” page (www.BuyFromGeorgia.com/submission
) and complete the registration form. Once the products are verified by GMA, they will be listed at no cost. This marketing will help grow awareness of their products and hopefully drive new sales.
Not all of the manufacturers currently sell their consumer goods on Amazon. But there’s a solution for every manufacturer in the state, and that’s membership in the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance. For a small annual fee, manufacturers will be included in the online directory and in the next print version coming out around the first of the year.
City officials can also encourage everyone involved in purchasing from the city to go to www.BuyFromGeorgia.com
when they plan to shop online. If they don’t find what they’re looking for, a convenient link at the top of the page takes them directly to Amazon. For example, a city employee who needs to order AAA or 9V batteries can buy them from Duracell through their Amazon account.
The manufacturing alliance also encouraged officials to take the same approach with everyone who makes purchasing decisions, either for their business or for personal gifts. “Christmas is just around the corner, and all of the activity through the site helps promote our state,” said Moss.