UPDATED: Madison to launch B2B and B2C sites - BikeBiz

UPDATED: Madison to launch B2B and B2C sites

The transactional business-to-business (B2B) site will be previewed at Madison's Dealer Convention at the end of Feb. Madison's move has been long expected and it's probable that a Madison B2B site will convert many IBDs into regular users of transactional bike trade sites in general. The B2C site is the consumer-facing front end of the trade site, containing all the same product info. Consumers order online, and pick up their products from their chosen IBD.
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Via passwords IBDs will be able to order on-line from Madison's extensive product portfolio, check their account and the status of previously placed orders.

The Madison B2B site provides a 'real-time' link to the Madison commercial system with full online stock availability. Like other transactional B2B sites already up-and-running in the bike trade - but not yet used by many IBDs - the Madison trade-only site will enable users to create a 'favourites' shopping list, access the current clearance list and see all new products at the click of a mouse.

The business-to-consumer site - UltimatePursuits.co.uk - will be heavily promoted on Madison consumer magazine adverts. Consumers can order all Madison products on-line from the personalised website Madison creates for signed-up IBDs and Madison will ship the product direct to IBDs for customers to collect. IBDs can pay for a bespoke website with the full Madison P&A portfolio.

Dominic Langan, Madison's commercial director, said UltimatePursuits would also be the portal for products from Leeda's fishing portfolio. Leeda is another of the companies owned by H Young plc.

UltimatePursuits would be a secure shop-window for consumers worried about buying online, said Langan:

"Many consumers use the internet for information gathering but are still reluctant to purchase on-line for fear of fraud, not knowing if the business is bona fide or whether they will receive the back up and support they would normally receive from a bricks and mortar retailer."

UltimatePursuits would be trusted site and because customers collect their goods in-the-flesh this would add to the feeling of security.

"Waiting for delivery to the home address is a pain and often you end up having to go the local collection depot. Returns and general customer service is another issue all together. This is why many of the e-commerce success stories are those sites which belong to high street retailers," said Langan.

"Madison carries a massive portfolio of parts and accessories including spares which would be impossible and uncommercial for all retailers to range but there is demand for the products.

"Consumer advertising of brands can be frustrating for consumers who are then unable to find the advertised product at their local retailer. With Ultimate Pursuits, the

consumer can select their local retailer, either near to home or near to work and order any Madison product and we deliver it to the shop.

"The consumer pays 50 percent on-line which is posted directly to the retailer's sales

ledger account with Madison. Madison ships the goods, even if it is one item. There is no minimum order value, and the consumer pays the balance in store when collecting the goods.

"There is no risk for the retailer, just customers coming into the shop to collect goods and hopefully then the retailer can use their magic to retain them as a customer. If nothing else, the consumer can use the UltimatePursuits site to read up on products and be much better informed and may well still come to their local retailer to buy in-store instead.

"Madison will design and host the website for the retailer with shop pictures, detail on the business, a map of how to find the business and key contact details."

Access to Ultimate Pursuits will be either via ultimatepursuits.co.uk or via existing IBD websites, or those front-ended by Madison.

The cost of being an Ultimate Pursuits "affiliate" is £50 per month, including web design and hosting costs.

And there's a new offline initiative, too. The Ultimate Cycle Directory is a 300-page Madison products magalogue.

This catalogue-with-magazine-features clearly harks back to the days of the Freewheel and Ron Kit magalogues but with a Catalogic-type twist: The Ultimate Cycle Directory is printed with customised front covers for individual IBDs.

This is how Madison is flagging up the initiative:

"Ever wanted your own full-size full-colour catalogue featuring a mail order facility? Like many IBDs you probably have, but cost has always been prohibitive. We are pleased to bring you a programme featuring a full colour 300 page perfect bound catalogue featuring a front cover unique to your business and six custom pages that can include a mail order section."

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