Supporting LBS (I know one more)
mess about with warrenty returns?
LBS: take back product, wait months for replacement.
CRC: bung in jiffy bag, into post box, wait 5-6 days for new parts to arrive.
Your right, the LBS truly is hopeless!Posted 10 years ago
Fair enough Ewan but are you representative of every cycle rider in the UK? There will be a lot of people that are competant enough to repair things themselves and shop online, fair enough. But there are thousands that need the assistance of a shop.
As far as Halfords & Evans go my nearest Evans is about 15 mile away in the centre of Manchester which is a long and costly journey.
End of the day each to their own which ever end of the spectrum you choose to do things is fine but I don't think that a lBS shop could compete or even be compared to a massive online distribution centre.
Maybe i'm just fortunate to have a good LBS near to my home and work that provides good service that I appreciate and account for when deciding where to shop.Posted 10 years ago
Your right, the LBS truly is hopeless!
Maybe you need to look for a new LBS, the point I was trying to make is good service. I wouldn't support my LBS if they were crap
CRC: bung in jiffy bag, into post box, wait 5-6 days for new parts to arrive.
LBS: Go in and moan over a brew, they sort out the replacement or repair and give me something to use in the meantime whether its a pair of forks or a full bike. Guess I'll be riding on those 5-6 days then…Posted 10 years ago
Gravitysucks – the times I need to buy something to make my bike work rather than to improve it's function are pretty rare, and I'd guess the majority of the biking public are not riding every day, so a wait of a day (if it's an emergency pay for express delivery) is not going to bother them.Posted 10 years ago
I agree Ewan, Thats assuming they will undertake the repair / replacement themselves and they're not commuters.
PS Don't mention this rarity thing to my other half…. this constant stream of bike parts and different things is absouluty essential 😉Posted 10 years ago
Most people don't upgrade their bikes willy nilly, or know how to repair them. The majority are commuters, who ride every day and destroy bits and have no idea about what's gone wrong so take it to the LBS to sort it out.
We also find a lot of road riders (and in particular tirathletes) are happy to ride bikes but not know how they work, which is fine- I wish I could just pay for someone to fix my bikes instead of fanny about myself!
Mountain bikers break more stuff so are more mechanically skilled as it saves a lot of money, so order more stuff online.
One thing LBSs are good for, other than the obvious building up a relationship and doing you deals and favours, is working with clubs for good deals and extra special service.Posted 10 years ago
I run a shop and never feel I'm ripping someone off at full rrp. Bike shops simply don't make that much money, if they could buy and sell in the quantity and from the channels major mail order places did then they could possibly come close to matching price but they can't because they are a 'local shop'.
The industry average net profit margin for bicycle retailers in the Uk and the U.S. is around 2% so not a lot of room to discount there I'm afraid.
Nowadays if you don't give very good service as a local shop then your days are limited I believe.
Not everyone is interested in knowledge and customer service and are only driven by price, that's fine, local shops don't exist to serve you so don't expect anything back from them. Must admit thought, everyone I've ever met who only ever bangs on about how cheap they can get things have been very dull people.
Those that believe supporting worthy local shops, good on you I feel the same way, as long as the service is good.
If there were hardly any small independent shops in any industry and only 2-3 big mailorder suppliers do you think they would still strive to deliver high service with no-one to match?Posted 10 years ago
Must admit thought, everyone I've ever met who only ever bangs on about how cheap they can get things have been very dull people.
So people who come into your shop and pay full RRP are exciting ?
Is it not more a case of you as a bike shop owner dont want to hear or are fed up listening to potential customers reciting internet prices as im sure that are always cheaper.
Its an expensive sport, and being a non-bike shop owner , i find when my mate's tell me about good prices and cheap bling its pretty good.
I feel for the LBS's but thats the way the business has went , the internet has opened the world up and tightened the competition , instead of LBS's competing with each other in a 20mile radius , now you have the whole planet to compete with .
Its a win win for us riders !Posted 10 years ago
Bits in an emergency – there will always be some bike shops.
Of course there will. Just like record shops. Oh, hang on, there's not many of those left now. Come to think of it, that's because everyone now buys records at Tesco or on the net.
Its a win win for us riders !
Not really. Where will you try on clothing and helmets? Get test rides from (or borrow bikes when you need to)? Get something done where you don't want to buy the tool, or can't do it yourself? I also wouldn't assume you can get the best deal online. My LBS did me a cracking deal when I bought a new bike. Then chucked in £150 of accessories. Then fiddled the C2W scheme 😉 YOU try doing that with CRC….Posted 10 years ago
Are my customers exciting? what a bizarre question. I would say they are a very accurate representation of people on the whole. Do they all pay full rrp, most but we have a loyalty scheme as does Tesco.
Can't say i get that many people in quoting internet/mailorder prices at all let alone enough to get fed up with them. I think people who are purely motivated by spending their time searching for the lowest price are not potential customers, at least in so far as I'd never make money selling to them so I don't try to.
Yes the internet has changed the face of retail and it's kinda exciting. Has it improved the world, many people would say no. I am not bothered in the least by mailorder and the internet competition, I don't try to compete with them on price because I can't, I compete on service because I can. To say all customers only ever buy based on price is very inaccurate, it's like saying that our only motivation in life is money.
Many people have LBS' which are poor on service so they think all LBS' are like that, other people have great LBS' so they think they're great and show them loyalty but expect the same in return.
The retail industry is the second biggst employer in the UK after the government so small shops closing due to the internet has no doubt had an impact on society and the face of our town centre's. It's changed for good but it does mean retailers on the High St have got to get better at what they do in order to survive and that is good for the consumer.
Thinking about it I saw an article on a business programme during the week on how small patisserie's in some parts of France are getting state handouts to keep them going because they have decided they are so intrinsically important in teeh fabric of their communities. If it goes that way we'll all be paying to support local businesses through our tax instead of our custom so we won't be saving money in the end.Posted 10 years ago
special it's already happening.
Do you really think that the producers of milk/meat/fruit/veg can survive without the handout from europe and the governments?
The way I see it it's not much for the 150€ I had to pay more fro the wheels, because they would have fitted the free of charge for me plus they would have done the first re-truing free of charge too (but I did it myself using their facilities for free). I spoke to them and lets face it, it is really hard time for them. Most margins are at 1.65 which is lets face it way way too tight as they can't even afford to do discount on that. It use to be a time where they could afford to close the shop a couple of days once during summer so we could all go in the countryside to ride during an extended week end (we include the most regular customers) in gite. The date would have been decided in the shop on a friday/saturnday eve after a nice meal made of italian meat/cheese. Shop use to pay for the evening (usualy a couple each year) and for the accomodation during the trip. They use to be able to get some stuff out of a new bike if you wanted upgrade. Now it's getting harder and harder. The lbs is roughtly making the same amount of money on a monthly basis if you compare it from last year, but the owners had to cut their salary. So sayign you gave yoru LBS 9000£ worth of trade doesn't really mean anything, they might have just earn 300£ out of the 9000£.Posted 10 years ago
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