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 Post subject: Bike shops
PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 12:26 am 
Road Moderator
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Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2009 1:07 pm
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Location: Sheppey, Kent
An opportunity has reared it's head for me to run a little cycle shop type thing. Thinking about specialising in used parts mainly focusing on road. Few repairs, servicing, etc otherwise just carry on as I am.

I'd really appreciate opinions on what is important to you from a bike shop. Some of it is obvious some I would think not....

I'm in a shall I, shan't I stage of thought process.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 7:12 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Fri Aug 20, 2010 10:12 am
Posts: 862
Location: wiltshire
Brilliant - i'd love to do that...

here's what i like:
1) Friendly staff
2) time just "to browse"
3) quality items
4) being able to chat to staff
5) somewhere to park my bike!

here's what i don't like

1) grumpy, poker faced staff
2) bike snobs
3) generic componentry
4) mass produced bikes


the best bike shop i've ever been to was in Berkley, California - full of friendly, down to earth staff, pegorettis, chesterfield sofas, rubber plants, retro projects, wooden floors, coffee, rare spares.... can't remeber the name of it though!


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 7:22 am 
retrobike rider
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Joined: Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:08 am
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Location: Nth Somerset, UK
You'd be missing a whole market if you didn't include some retro mtb parts too. Don't forget, a lot of people are 'cyclists', I know plenty of guys with road, cross and mtb's, retro and modern.

Plenty of stock is important, there is nothing worse that one of those generic 'cycle stores' with rows of new (expensive) bikes, three tyres, two saddles and several tonnes of drinks / nutrition.

Friendly helpful staff are a must.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 9:43 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2008 4:31 pm
Posts: 740
Am I the only one who likes lots of bits to touch. Many bike shops have a row of bikes and clothing from 1 maker. I know its all about who gives good prices and range but it doesn't encourage me. I prefer the old fashioned shop with stuff everywhere, a workshop you can see with lots of tools and even a notice board for clubs and sales.
Learn to build wheels well, cater for all types and don't be too snotty to kids who want to borrw things. Keep a cheap set of allen keys from the pound shop for that.
Accept that many people will browse with you then buy from the web so maybe avoid that stock which is most widely discounted where possible.
Advertise and try to be visible.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 11:28 am 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2011 8:41 pm
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Location: Cumbria
Is this going to be an extension of a hobby or are you going to rely on it to pay the mortgage ?

The two are completely different IMHO.

Shaun


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 12:45 pm 
Gold Trader
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I like shops where the staff are friendly, and willing to accomodate my sometimes strange requests.

The biggest turn off for me is being treated like I have no idea, or even being told I am completely wrong, when I know I'm right and have far more idea than whoever is telling me otherwise!

good luck with the project Tel!


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 6:12 pm 
Old School Hero

Joined: Tue Jun 22, 2010 9:40 am
Posts: 152
foz wrote:
The biggest turn off for me is being treated like I have no idea, or even being told I am completely wrong, when I know I'm right and have far more idea than whoever is telling me otherwise!


^This was a key point for me today, I won't go into the details but was treated like I was an absolute idiot, even when asking for a specific product in a specific size. Needless to say I won't be returning to that shop.

I like to chat bikes with the staff... friendly knowledge is what I, and I'm sure other appreciate. Also when the staff do a little extra when sourcing bits and bobs, making the consumer feel like they are looked after.

Keep us updated Tel!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 7:49 pm 
Road Moderator
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Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2009 1:07 pm
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Location: Sheppey, Kent
Thanks guys.

The shop* is very small although has the possibility of expansion if things go well. Stock will be mainly used parts as I do now just have everything out on display. With a commercial premises I should be able to open trade accounts which I cannot currently do as I am home based.

The shop will be part time unfortunately as I continue with my full time job too. I would love to make it my career and that will continue to be my aim.

I find most bike shops rather boring to be in I'm hoping to have more of an Aladdins cave for roadies (occassional retro MTB would be good too I agree)

Anyway thanks for all the suggestions they've been a great help.


(it doesn't have a shop front and is not in town, more of a garage/ lockup really :) but in a semi commercial location)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 8:05 pm 
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Ever since I saw it online I've wanted a shop like this one (appearance wise anyway): http://sargentandco.com/


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 8:10 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Fri Aug 20, 2010 10:12 am
Posts: 862
Location: wiltshire
that is the bollocks indeed!


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