Who: Sears, Roebuck and Co., Hoffman Estates, Ill.
What: Online sales of major appliances. Sears added the majaps site earlier this month, offering 2,000 brand-name refrigerator/freezers, dishwashers, washer/dryers and microwaves. Products will be delivered within seven days for a fee of $35, and carry the same prices as Sears' physical stores. Surfers can create their own side-by-side comparison charts based on price, color, finish or other criteria, or can search by make or model number.
When: Sears began selling Craftsman tools online in October 1997. It added parts and accessories in April 1999 and appliances on May 13.
Why: "Launching appliances online is a major step forward in Sears' strategy to be the definitive online source for the home," explained Alice Peterson, VP/general manager of Sears Online. The mass merchant wouldn't confirm if and when it will add consumer electronics to its online assortment, although an announcement is expected later this year.
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