The Wall Street Journal, February 2, 2012
Four years ago, Jared Madsen started a company that makes bicycles built for five. He sold his bikes—which had two wheels and a rear bucket big enough to tote four children—wholesale to shops around the country.
But today, 90% of sales at his small business, Madsen Cycles, in Murray, Utah, come from an online store that took his Web designer half a day to embed within his company’s website.
The company’s bikes are now sold by him directly to consumers for about $1,485 apiece, at what he describes as a “way higher profit.” He declines to specify his markups.
Mr. Madsen says he initially thought the online store would just fill in “holes” where he didn’t have distribution. But the benefit to him in the end, he adds, was that the Web store made it possible for him to dramatically reduce his reliance on third-party shops.
As a result, the online store is now his business’s main source of income.
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