Milo.com, an online service that points consumers to stores that carry retail products and keeps track of their availability and inventory levels, has now expanded beyond its initial focus on big-box stores such as Best Buy, Fry’s and Nordstrom, and will now also work with small retailers.
The service, which broadly competes with Krillion, launched this week with 100 small retailers, such as Black Diamond Sports, a skate shop in Palo Alto, as well as specialty dress shops, etc. CEO and cofounder Jack Abraham says the extension into small retailers is a natural one for the year-old 22-person company, which has raised $5 million from True Ventures and 25 angels, some of which have had relationships with comScore. Abraham’s father is a founder of the research service.
Abraham notes that the service has attracted 1 million monthly users with no advertising, and is ready to expand on a number of fronts, including aggressively courting content sites, shopping sites and general search services as media partners. Internet Yellow Pages, for instance, would make a good fit because they get a lot of product search, he says.
Retailers that work with Milo have a choice of selecting a subscription or performance based model. The challenge in working with small businesses is that they are hard to scale and get their data, notes Abraham. But they also make up a vital part of the retail fabric, especially in large cities such as San Francisco that have an emphasis on boutique clothing shops, etc.