LBS location question

Home Forum Bike Forum LBS location question

Viewing 38 posts - 1 through 38 (of 38 total)
  • LBS location question
  • soma_rich
    Member

    Good customer service above all other things.

    5thElefant
    Member

    It would need to be local to me. Luckily I live in an ‘out of the way’ location.

    Premier Icon tomhoward
    Subscriber

    A website

    brakes
    Member

    some great trails on the doorstep.

    haibikeboy
    Member

    Website and the whole ‘faceache and twatter’ thing are a given. Its the actual shop experience thing i’m after. Does anyone really give a monkeys what the shop actually looks like or do we all expect wood floors and stainless steel fittings with an italian coffee machine? Does everyone want endless choice of stuff or just the market leading brands?

    Premier Icon amplebrew
    Subscriber

    Good stock levels, although I would imagine that would be near on impossible.

    My nearest shop is a fair distance away and to be honest I order everything online as postage is so quick these days.

    Mail order parts are usually on my doorstep in 48hrs or less and that’s to an offshore address.

    I only ever use the shop if I needed something same day and of course they would need to have it in stock.

    jodafett
    Member

    By “out of the way” do you mean in a suburb or a field (small village)?

    bencooper
    Member

    Does anyone really give a monkeys what the shop actually looks like or do we all expect wood floors and stainless steel fittings with an italian coffee machine?

    No. Wheelcraft is rightly revered and is nothing like that. I’m sure Big Al has a floor somewhere under all the junk 😉

    pebblebeach
    Member

    It would need to be large, have a wide range of good brands and lots of stock.

    Use wheelbase as a example, its always been busy any time I’ve been.

    haibikeboy
    Member

    ‘out of the way’ in this case would mean rural/farm type location but close to some good trails and some nice training loops for the roadies. Its doubtful that there would be any passing trade as such.

    patriotpro
    Member

    Price and service.

    For out of the way, it would need a really large stock of bikes and components. I think I’d only travel when I had cash in my pocket and a) wanted to buy it but see it first b) buying a bike and wanted to ride it first.

    I’m lucky, my LBS was / is always great. Friendly, reasonable stock, fair pricing and you were happy to pay an extra 1-3% vs CRC et al to ensure it hung around. One of those places where tea’s offered and they organise rides, cycling proficiency and maintenance at local schools etc.

    Premier Icon amplebrew
    Subscriber

    haibikeboy – Member
    ‘out of the way’ in this case would mean rural/farm type location but close to some good trails and some nice training loops for the roadies. Its doubtful that there would be any passing trade as such.

    Maybe offer a reason for folks to stop other than to buy bikes and parts.

    A TV with cycling DVD’s playing, tea and coffee etc.

    Make it a place for people to meet as well as a shop.

    haibikeboy
    Member

    just looked at wheelcraft website. this is almost exactly what i mean – only maybe a tiny bit tidier to begin with. being not from his area, i’d never heard of him. How many more places like this exist in the uk?

    haibikeboy
    Member

    Ok. What would an lbs need in order for you to travel to an ‘out of the way’ location. Brands? service? price? parking? your thoughts please

    tonyd
    Member

    I live about 10 miles from my favorite bike shop, there are at least 2 inbetween it and me. I guess it’s not really my LBS for that reason, but it is the one I go to most. My true LBS is a Spesh Elite store and is very good, but they are in the middle of a busy town so tend to cater more for the ‘average’ cyclist.

    The one further afield has less stock but is a little more specialised (no pun intended). Staff in both are very good, my LBS has two individuals who I have a lot of time for and the others I get on well with. All of the staff in my preferred shop are excellent, very knowledgeable, and ride a lot, most race. The owner is there most days and is one of the nicest people I know, always got time to stop and shoot the breeze.

    For me it’s staff attitude, knowledge and friendliness that wins my custom (not that I have a lot of money to spend these days!). Location is nice but not imperative.

    haibikeboy
    Member

    does anyone know of such a shop which has its own niche? no matter how big or where. and i dont mean the city centre fixie tweed thing and i don’t mean ten grand colnagos and rapha kit. i just mean something different.

    Premier Icon mogrim
    Subscriber

    ‘out of the way’ in this case would mean rural/farm type location but close to some good trails and some nice training loops for the roadies. Its doubtful that there would be any passing trade as such.

    I’d expect lots of shiny bits to drool over, stock for most common parts (brake pads and the like), and quality (rather than prompt) service from the workshop.

    I don’t usually stop for coffee halfway round a loop or whatever, maybe a beer when I’ve finished, so from my point of view if you’re planning on serving food/drink I’d need it to be the start/end of a decent, waymarked (or at least mapped) ride, road or otherwise.

    tonyd
    Member

    Pump track out the back?

    haibikeboy
    Member

    got a track pump at the front if thats any good! Not really got room for that but only 5-10 mins ride from trails and jump spots.

    tonyd
    Member

    I’m not sure close to trails is that important, other than for folks that want to demo (and you can just let them take a bike for the weekend with appropriate deposits). If I’m out for a ride (road or MTB) the last thing on my mind is popping into the LBS to pick up that new rear mech. Likewise I’m unlikely to stop mid-ride for anything other than a cup of tea and a slice of cake, so a full on cafe is a waste of time.

    If I’m going to buy something from a shop I want to be able to go in and touch/feel it, then talk to the shop staff about it for a good 60 minutes while gauging opinion on other options. Once a decision has been made I’d expect to be able to talk about other random subjects such as the merits of particular tyre compounds and tread patterns for the local soil type, terrain, and conditions. Preferably over a cup of tea and slice of Jamaica Ginger Cake.

    bencooper
    Member

    does anyone know of such a shop which has its own niche?

    Well, me I suppose. My niche is I’ll do anything – today I built an electric bike, made a fixture to make custom-length cranks, a titanium Rohloff Brompton was collected, and I’m finishing off a fatbike frame.

    Be good at what you do, and people will come no matter where you are.

    tonyd
    Member

    My niche is I’ll do anything

    That’s a good niche.

    I don’t see the point in being niche and selling just £10k Pinarellos unless your shop is somewhere like Monte Carlo.

    haibikeboy
    Member

    Am i right in thinking that some of you guys, other than bencooper,who obviously does have a shop, are shop owners?

    Premier Icon zilog6128
    Subscriber

    Like a lot of people on here I consider myself fairly savvy in terms of doing my own maintenance, etc and searching out bargains online. Pretty much the only thing that would make me adopt an LBS for regular use would be bend-over-backwards customer service (a big ask I know) and a matey, welcoming attitude that fosters loyalty and a club-like bond between staff & customers. A regular ride on local roads/trails is a big part of this IMO. And of course decent stock of consumables like tyres, cassettes, pads, BBs, etc, at reasonable prices so you actually have a reason to go there.

    Premier Icon 40mpg
    Subscriber

    Reference ‘Charliethebikemonger’ for all the above 😀

    tonyd
    Member

    I’d like to own a bike shop but I’d be bankrupt in less than a year 🙂

    haibikeboy
    Member

    why do you say thay tonyd? because you don’t think its viable or because you’d use all the stock for yourself?

    Premier Icon zilog6128
    Subscriber

    Reference ‘Charliethebikemonger’ for all the above

    shame he’s nearly 200 miles away!

    Premier Icon valleydaddy
    Subscriber

    my LBS is 8 miles away, the one in my hometown is poor, the good things are it has plenty of parking, great service, lots of spares, happy for a chat, asks what products I want to see in the shop, supports ours and other local cycling groups, supports everything from scooters through MTB/road to full custom build TT bikes. Offers a good range of bikes and can build some dream bikes too when asked.

    also goes the extra mile when you want your bike fixed for the weekend, brill

    Go EC Cycles

    tonyd
    Member

    Mostly tongue in cheek. It would probably be viable in my local area despite a fair bit of competition, and I wouldn’t use the stock for myself as I’d be happy tinkering with other people’s bikes. Therein lies my problem I think, I’d be happiest tinkering, drinking tea, going on shop rides, and shooting the breeze. The hard work that comes with getting a business off the ground would take second place to the spanners 🙂

    Mine is the only income until the kids start school too so there’s even less likelihood of it happening!

    Premier Icon cakefacesmallblock
    Subscriber

    My nearest LBS is 12 miles away and is fairly easy to park close to. However it can be a busy drive and it’s totally the opposite direction for our “local” riding spots. To be near someone’s local trails and handy for roadies would be good though I guess.
    The more rural the location though, sadly, I suppose security would be my big worry, let alone gaining sales momentum quickly enough. Word of mouth though, will gain sales faster than most methods.

    pebblebeach
    Member

    I don’t see the point in being niche and selling just £10k Pinarellos unless your shop is somewhere like Monte Carlo.

    Ben’s shop is is in somewhere like Monte Carlo, well Bearsden/Milngavie 🙂

    jamiea
    Member

    A mechanic who will face a BB shell and install a headset on my Orange while I wait then telling the bloke who wanted his daughter’s BSO’s brakes looking at “it’ll be two weeks mate, we’re stacked out”!

    Cheers,
    Jamie

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    Parking/bus access and service. Service is most important but travel dictates whether or not I can get there (if dropping off a bike, anyway)

    But then I mainly use my LBSs as workshops rather than retail shops.

    goldenwonder
    Member

    tonyd – Member
    Pump track out the back?

    We’re in the process of building one 😉

    Premier Icon JoeG
    Subscriber

    A shop that has different brands from the big mainstream ones which are usually available would interest me!

    I’m in the US, and most shops are Trek, Specialized, Giant, Cannondale, etc. And they often carry the clothing and accessories from those brands as well. I’d like a shop that deals with brands like Ibis, Yeti, Ellsworth, Commencal, Intense, or Transition. And clothing and packs by Fox and Dakine. Helmets other than Bell, Giro, and the bike brands.

    And if you can be competitive with online prices for things that a customer orders, I’d buy a lot that way. A LBS may be able to do this as they spend a minute or two ordering the items from their distributor, send an email when it arrives, and then the item is paid for and out the door in a day or two usually, so money turns over quickly. Whereas stock items in the shop can sit for months, tying up a lot of money.

    FuzzyWuzzy
    Member

    Short queues for a workshop slot and demo bike availability are all I really want in an LBS, trouble is the former becomes a victim of it’s own success and the latter isn’t viable for most due to the cost overheads. Sure I’d like them to stock a range similar to Wiggle but I know that’s not going to happen so apart from consumables (tubes, energy bars etc.) it’s unlikely I’ll go to my LBS to buy anything else.

Viewing 38 posts - 1 through 38 (of 38 total)

The topic ‘LBS location question’ is closed to new replies.