Are you experimenting with new sales strategies? If not, it might be time to try.
As the cycling industry continues to evolve, many of the most successful bike retailers are trying new strategies and experimenting with ideas to create new revenue opportunities. Have you considered trying something new lately?
From your service department to fittings, rentals, and used bikes – there’s quite a lot that retailers can do. Today, we’re diving into some of the most effective ideas, beginning with your service department (as well as some additional solutions specific to members of The Bike Cooperative).
Expand your service department
Over the last decade, the cycling population has increased while the number of bicycle storefronts has declined by a third. This provides ample opportunity for retailers like you to fill the gap.
For example: Pairing service requests with our Ride Club customer loyalty program can help bring customers back for regular service – which means a safer ride for your customers and a busier service department for your shop.
On top of this, location-aware apps like RideSpot (by People4Bikes), Trailforks, and Strava encourage riders to get out more, find the safest places to pack on the miles, and – in some cases – ride harder. This presents valuable service opportunities for local bike shops. Is your shop engaging with customers on their ride with these tools? It could be the easy road to a new customer. Take full advantage of the different demographics that use these apps, and engage with them where you can – some of them even offer special features that help you engage with riders, such as challenges, ride groups, curated routes, and more.
Double Down on Fittings
As consumers research more and more about their purchases, getting the fit just right has become more of a motivation. For some riders, fittings have become an expense worth investing in to guarantee a great bike that inspires confidence. Consumers are past the point of buying extra parts and hoping that they adjust properly. Instead, they are now looking to be fitted by a professional for maximum comfort.
For many cyclists, the perfect fit is essential. Helping them find it could be a great way to win a customer for life.
Do you offer fitting services on site? If not, one option is to partner with local fitters to refer each other’s business. Another option is to offer a purchase package where the buyer can purchase a bike and an outsourced fitting at your store.
Are bike rentals an option in your market? (You may be surprised)
The next option looks at getting your existing equipment (or used inventory) on the road.
Bike rentals have become a large opportunity in the market, of course – this is often dependent on location, but even if you’re not in a tourist hotspot, don’t write rentals off too quickly.
Many shops have found a niche market in renting bikes. Try to find out if there is an event or a program within your own community that could need a supply of bikes. From street festivals to city-wide events, there are plenty of opportunities to rent out bikes. And as retailers in many niches know – a demo or rental can often be the best way to create a new enthusiast.
Use ‘used’ to engage new bikers, encourage trade-ins, and increase service tickets
If none of these options strike you, consider used bike sales to pump up your bottom line.
You may think, “Why would I want to take in a used bike?” But it can easily be an opportunity to create a new customer who will trade in an older bike for a newer one – especially with the option of in-store, consumer bike financing.
In turn, the customer feels like they’re getting a fair deal, while adding another sale to your books.
The goal is to turn the used bike around as quickly as possible (even on Ebay or online – or with a sidewalk sale). This option also has the power to bring awareness and recognition to your shop, meaning more people can come to you for repairs, services and accessories.