VentureBeat has a writeup of new local appliance search site Krillion. It’s a good-looking site with a nice UI. The problem I see is that it “solves” the easy part of the problem. A search on “white General Electric refrigerators,” for example, yields 95 results across a handful of national chains (Best Buy, Lowe’s, etc.). All these retailers, of course, have big Web presences with extensive product and inventory information, much of it specific to stores in a particular area code.
The real challenge, we (and many others) believe, is helping customers discover the local independent dealers that stock a desired item and which may be closer and/or cheaper. Of course, that’s a tough challenge and plenty of other businesses are taking a crack at it (including, of course, ConsensusBest). Among them, StepUp (now part of Intuit) and Yokel. Of course, I’m sure Krillion is working on this, too.
Update: The other concern we have with Krillion is with what appear to be ads (in the right column of results pages) under headings like “Looking for a unique dishwasher?” and which take you to manufacturer Web sites, but which aren’t labeled as such.