Milo Hopes To Move Online Sales To Stores

By Steve Smith On Mar 26 2012 - 4:01am




ORLANDO, FLA. – E-Commerce 3.0 arrived at the Nationwide Marketing Group Prime- Time! convention here in February with the appearance of Milo Local Shopping, an eBay company.

But Milo’s Mike Blais, local marketing senior manager, noted, “We are commerce 3.0 — you take the ‘e’ out of it — since Milo is the blurring of stores and online.”

The reason why Blais said that is because Milo is designed for brick-and-mortar stores to put their inventory — including location, price and availability — online in real time, so shoppers are able to search retailers’ products and, in the company’s words, “discover your store.”

Blais said, “We are here for the cross- channel consumers — those that research online but buy offline. We hope that Internet sales will happen within a physical store. Profits [from] in-store sales are significant.”

Milo quoted Forrester research from last year showing that 40 percent of all offline U.S. retail sales were influenced by the web and that the money these shoppers spent was close to $1 trillion.

As Blais put it: “Online is where you discover the products. Offline — or in stores — is where you buy them.”

He noted that Milo is now compatible with several point-of-sale systems, so a retailer’s products can be searchable in real time and can be accessed by local customers who will go to the brick-and-mortar location.

Milo began rolling out the program at Nationwide’s meeting, and Blais said he hopes to grow a network of Nationwide members by the end of the first half of the year.

“We look at Milo as the next step in retailing,” Blais said, who added that the company is interested in signing many independent CE and electronics/appliance retailers up for this service. For more information, go to http://milo.com/retailers.

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