While Amazon has almost anything that most consumers need, the volume of products can be daunting for those who want to casually browse the site or discover well-designed or high-end products. Canopy is a website created by former Google designers that hopes to solve this problem by offering a curated storefront for products available via Amazon. Canopy offers a front-end alternative, while relying on Amazon’s back-end to make products available in just a few clicks.
“We all prefer to buy things on Amazon to just about anywhere else,” says Brian Armstrong, one of Canopy’s co-founders. “Amazon has a great infrastructure to deliver products. But they’re much less involved in the kind of questions of taste around products, and how to best provide context that’s going to make you feel special when you’re buying it. These are areas we think are super important.”
“Taste is the first filter for the stuff you’ll find on Canopy,” reports Wired. “Every one of the 7,000-some products currently on the site was hand-picked by Canopy’s five-person staff. They are, by and large, things you would not expect to find on Amazon.”
Canopy emphasizes presentation as much as curation. Its product page is clean and respectful of each product. “It shows a photo, a few related items, comments that have been left by Canopy members, and a prominent link to Amazon,” notes the article. “According to Armstrong, the idea is to treat each product like a piece of art.”
“We think of Canopy like a museum of amazing products where all of the products are available to buy right now,” Armstrong says. “It’s similar to the MOMA store in some way. And I think right now we’ve built the MOMA store. What we haven’t built are the exhibits.”