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20 Sep 2023

ACT members will benefit from a long term discounted commission of just 3%

18 Sep 2023

New statistics showing a 5% fall in cycling from last year should be a “wake-up call for the government” and are due to the Government's "flawed" decision to slash the...

18 Sep 2023

The government’s Active Lives Survey has revealed that, in 2022, Cambridge (50%), Oxford (35%), Isles of Scilly (30%), Hackney (28%), and Southwark (25%) were the five local authorities in...

18 Sep 2023

ACT member Balfe’s Bikes has begun its plan to introduce Cytech apprentices to its stores and upskill existing staff through the Cytech training programme.

15 Sep 2023

The team from Whistler Adventure School (WAS), which recently became the only centre in Canada accredited to offer Cytech technical three, is to deliver a series of free sessions in Scotland,...

6 Sep 2023

Offers designed to help Londoners 'make the green transition' following the expansion of the ultra low emission zone (ULEZ) last month include a range of discounts, offers or trials available...

6 Sep 2023

A new report on the state of the UK cycle industry suggests that bike sales have fallen once again, months after it was reported that they had fallen to a 20-year low in 2022.

6 Sep 2023

Rebecca, staff member with the ACT has released an EP on the music platform Spotify, with popular local band Thee Derelique.

5 Sep 2023

A Government energy efficiency campaign has been launched to help SME businesses across the UK to both better understand and reduce their energy usage - and in turn reduce their energy bills....

4 Sep 2023

New research has named Danish capital Copenhagen as the best city for cyclists in Europe, with one-third (33%) of the city choosing to travel by bike. Copenhagen is also one of the safest cities...

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The benefits of buying an e-bike in a local bike shop

Posted on in Business News , Cycles News

Cycling Electric has run an interesting article on the value of buying an e-bike from a local independent bike shop.

bikes and tryew

The article cites the high degree of knowledge bike shop staff, many of whom are often enthusiasts themselves, as one of the main reasons for bike shops’ resilience. It says that a degree of knowledge is required to sell a bike and its subsequent servicing, especially to cycling newcomers faced with an array of jargon.

‘Visiting your local bike store has several advantages over buying online. One key benefit is the chance to view, size and try the bike,’ it quotes Len Simmons, owner of Hertford independent store Highway Cycles as saying. ‘The knowledgeable staff can also help you find products that meet your specific needs and preferences that you may not be aware of and have yet to consider.’

And when it comes to electric bike there is a lot of information to understand  before you even get to the all-important test ride.

Andrew Wood, who works with the UK’s largest chain of electric bike specific stores – the Electric Bike Shop – tells them that he echoes that sentiment.

‘Test rides are a must. A bike is a high-value item, and you want to ensure you get the right one – you wouldn’t buy a car without a test drive and a bike should be no different. This is very important because a bike that’s the wrong size can lead to discomfort during and after the ride. At The Electric Bike Shop we offer free test rides where you can take any bike out to try and ensure you come away with the right one for you.’

In the article, Cycling Electric talk to one of the pioneering independent businesses in the e-bike market, Fully Charged, which has six locations where you can gain that first-person understanding.

On the importance of the test ride, Henry Hayes of Fully Charged says, ‘Being able to get a feel for the product, see how it handles and make sure it’s a comfortable option is of the utmost importance. This couldn’t be truer than in the family cargo bike segment, which as our biggest growth area requires an in-person experience to truly get to grips with a bike that handles differently to most.’

Certainly a cargo bike is the prime example of a product that would make little sense to buy online. The article says that anyone bold enough to buy online without a demo would be taking a gamble on which style is suitable for their needs and cycling experience.

It’s here that Hayes flags the expert advice that is harder to obtain via online chat tools.

‘Paying a store a visit represents an opportunity to talk to experienced salespeople who can provide the best possible knowledge and service. At Fully Charged we work incredibly hard to hire the right individuals who can drive our industry forward and ensure the customer has the best possible experience. Our family cargo bike experts are parents – they ride their cargo bikes every day with their kids. We make a real point of this.’

Real-life experience of the product on the shop floor also certainly helps. Where enthusiasts staff the ranks there’s higher odds that the lines available will have been verified as worthy of that store’s customer base. Rarely will a store stock a product that it doesn’t believe in.

Simmons at Highway Cycles goes further. While demo rides are important in the customer process, his store organises ride-outs with customers, investing the time to get to know each person and what they hope to take from cycling.

‘Building a relationship with a trusted store can also provide you with reliable advice and service in the future,’ he says. ‘We organise store rides with groups of customers, and anyone is always welcome to join.’

To read the whole article, click here.

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