Amazon is going after teens by giving them special accounts

AmazonAmazonParents can approve or reject their teen’s purchases.

Amazon launched a new kind of account specifically for teens.

Tied to the parent’s account, the log-in allows teens to purchase items off Amazon.com and from Amazon services with their parents’ credit card and Prime accounts. It’s available immediately, starting on Wednesday.

Parents can provide a set allowance for shopping on Amazon using the service. They can also approve purchases teens request on a case-by-case basis.

The requests are sent via text or email, and include a message from the teen — for example: “please please buy this for me Mum!” — and parents can approve or reject it instantly.

“We’re empowering the parents. So we’re not going to try to make decisions for them,” Michael Carr, vice president of Amazon Households, told the Wall Street Journal. “But we’re going to give them the information they need to make those decisions.”

Parents who opt out of the approval system can still be alerted when teens buy something with their allowance.

Up to four teens can make an account tied to a single parent account. Amazon says the service is for 13 to 17-year-olds, but Carr told the WSJ they’re open to kids of all ages using the service.

“We’re not going to bust into your house and try to verify the age of your kid,” Carr said.

Amazon has an incentive to getting teens used to online shopping early and eventually becoming full-fledged customers.

Capturing teen customers might be more difficult than previously imagined.

In a survey of teens ages 13-17 (known in the survey as young Gen-Z) 81% of young Gen Z respondents said they preferred to shop in stores, while 40% said they will only shop in stores this holiday season.

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