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Trek's online bike sales to launch 'very, very soon'

Published November 11, 2015

MADISON, Wis. (BRAIN) — Trek Bicycle will turn-on its new website — with its much-discussed online bike sales feature — "very, very soon" a company spokesman told BRAIN on Wednesday.

Trek announced the program in August at its Trek World dealer event in Madison. At the time, the company said it expected to begin online bike sales in late September. Now, Trek spokesman Eric Bjorling said completing the site has been more challenging and time consuming than expected.

"Making the Internet is hard, especially nowadays," Bjorling said with a chuckle. "There is a lot more data integration, a lot of connection to new things, including connecting to retailers and setting up their service commissions on the site."
"We really want to come out of the gate firing on all cylinders. We know there are a lot of people watching, so we are erring on the side of getting it right, instead of getting it right now."
Bjorling said the site would certainly be live before the end of the year, and perhaps well before that. But he declined to name a specific time frame. "We kind of learned our lesson with time frames, so I'm going to stop short of putting a time frame on it."
Bjorling said that the bike sales program details have not changed since the program was announced. Under the program, consumers who order complete bikes from the site will have them delivered to their chosen nearby Trek retailer. The retailer will assemble the bike for consumer pick-up, or can offer delivery. The retailers receive commissions that are tied to the margins they would have made selling the same bike at their stores. The new site will also sell Trek and Bontrager products, and products from a few third party vendors. Those products will be delivered directly to consumers.
Other parts of the Trek Connect program that were announced in August have been activated already. That includes a fall catalog mailing and email promotions sent out on behalf of Trek dealers and tied to seasonal product promotions and displays at stores. 
"We shipped the first catalog and got great feedback about it. We've also sent several emails through and had healthy open rates on them," Bjorling said. A Holiday season catalog is due to arrive in mailboxes Dec. 2. Bjorling said it would promote several new limited edition products. 
Topics associated with this article: Omnichannel

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