Category: Bikeshop

5 ways to make your bike shop more successful

I hear that some shops are struggling, and I’m trying to understand it myself. But here are 5 things that to me, seem like they can help make your bike shop more successful.

It’s not so much about racing anymore.

In the past and still, very often our best and high dollar customers are the race crowd. Bicycle racing does promote the sport, push innovation and drive sales. It’s kind of the whole point for our and other industries too.

Lets just not forget that we are changing the world and part of becoming a more bike-friendly world is we need to embrace the weird and wonderful bikes that our new customers want to test ride. With those bikes come a new group of people that may be put off by the race scene. What percentage of the population in your city races bikes? I bet is just a small part of it. We need to welcome the remainder of the population.

Own the issues and be transparent.

This is an ongoing customer service issue in every industry. be open and honest, tell them what you are going to do, try to do it, if you run into issues, keep the customer in the loop. whether it’s positive or negative. In the long run, it will be appreciated, and respected.

Embrace E-bikes.

E-bikes are here, they’re awesome and the sales are growing in leaps and bounds at the moment. E-bikes are part of getting that other part of your population in your store and most importantly on a bike and outside. It’s not cheating, it’s another form of transportation that isn’t about competition, itas about access and expansion of cycling for everyone. I mention this every time someone gives that “oh I’d never need that, I’m too good for that” response to e-bikes. More on e-bikes in a related post here.

Talk to your customers.

Be the person that listens and asks questions and validates their concerns and interests. call them on the phone, follow up after the sale, and service. Send thank you and holiday cards. This is important: Not every contact needs to be a marketing ploy. Honest Communication is appreciated and it keeps your awesome shop in their thoughts.

Follow up after the sale and service.

Prep for service during the sale because modern high-end bikes need skilled routine maintenance. Let’s start the education form the beginning and knock it out of the park with fast and expert service with a smile. Call them 60 days after they take the bike home and see if they have any questions or need any accessories. Invite them to a ride or to a how-to class. Let them know you have their backs and best interests in mind.

Don’t shun the do it yourself and online purchase crowd.

They may not know it yet but they need you and your vast experience and honest yet gentle assessment of their needs. You need them too. ask my auto mechanic, D.I.Y folks may not start in your shop but they end up spending money there. They need you as much as you need them. treat them with respect and as interns, they want to learn and don’t want to feel bad for trying it themselves.

Go forth, make your customers love you and never forget to have fun.

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5 things to consider when you’re struggling with something and feel stuck.

We all go through rough spots now and again, and I’ve certainly had my share of ups and downs. So I thought I would share the things I remind myself of when I’m paying my dues so to speak. Here’s 5 things to consider when you’re struggling with something and feel stuck.

  1. We may not be able to control a situation, but we are in charge of our reaction to the situation. this is key because our brains turn off when we get frustrated or angry. so staying calm will aid in making better decisions.
  2. We’ve been through rougher things than this, and still made it. The situation is tough, but so are we. In fact we are tougher. Don’t let your self doubt get the best of you. You got this.
  3. I ask myself “What do I need to learn to solve this?” or “What do I need to to learn from this?” This is a way to get ourselves back on the solution seeking mindset and continue the progress forward. Regardless of our ego’s we should get comfortable with the fact that we don’t know everything, even in our field of expertise. Challenges are opportunities to learn and become better or more educated about ourselves.
  4. Meditate on it. I ride my bike. do what you do to be at peace with yourself. Quiet your mind and have some alone time. Once you have had some mental silence you can get back to it. What is that next one thing that can move this along.
  5. Keep moving forward. even a small break to take a breath and collect yourself. Then Continue the forward movement. Take one step at a time and do the next right thing.

You got this, keep moving, You’ll look back on this and and be glad you made it through later.

Go Kick some Butt!

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Inexpensive online bike components and how to install them.

Most Bikers know how to get inexpensive bike components online for less. Sometimes less than the local shop buys them. There’s a lot confusion and a little panic in the industry about it.

I see parts online at a lower cost than Most shops can get wholesale. There are some suppliers that are really hurting the shops ability to sell parts at a reasonable price to you. It’s a common point of conversation in the bike industry. Unfortunately it has caused what I hope is a small percentage of shop folks, to be a little salty about it.

Here’s the thing, you may be able to get bike parts online at a better price, but getting those components installed correctly and truly working properly can be a challenge for the average cyclist.

broken bike chain

If your local shop is on there game, they should welcome you and be glad you chose them to install the parts for you. Qualified shops will have a labor charge that’s designed to help cover there expenses. Qualified shops have certified mechanics that make it fast and easy to make them work correctly. They have the right tools, and they have done the job hundreds of times. They know you can get that part for less then they can, and would probably do the same if it was their car, computer, or appliance.

Let’s all just be honest with ourselves, we want a deal, and we want to save money. Things often look easier than they are and we will need to seek professionals. We know it, they know it. Let’s all just own it and stop acting like its an assault on our personal ethics to seek help or install a part that we didn’t make a margin on.

We are all just people who need our stuff to work, and want to enjoy our bikes.

Go to your local bike shop, have an honest conversation and get to know each other. If they treat you like you are robbing them, maybe the other shop in town is the one to talk to.

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