As a mom and pop shop, it’s easy to feel a bit intimidated by the presence of Amazon every holiday season and we get it but there are many things that Amazon can’t offer consumers that you can. Amazon is a powerful entity in the market but they’re also far from perfect in ways mom and pop shops happen to excel in. So here is how your bike shop can beat Amazon this Black Friday.
People Prefer a Familiar Face
Bicycle shops have been around for hundreds of years and there is a certain sense of community that comes with shopping from one. For instance, getting to know the owner or their employees happens pretty easily when you have a one stop shop for all your bicycle needs. Giving business to someone you’ve had a nice conversation with feels much better than simply ordering an item online from some faceless site.
Professional Customer Service
Buying a bike can be a large decision for some and there is definitely enough choices to warrant many questions. And you’re somebody consumers can trust to answer them. Whether it be helping make a recommendation or how to adjust your brakes, being able to ask an expert is beyond valuable and online stores just don’t do it as well.
Offer Repair and Maintenance Services
Amazon is an easy place to buy items from but try repairing a flat through them. Bicycle shops offering repair and maintenance services make life much easier for bike owners so it makes sense to build that relationship with them. You got to make customers feel like “Oh I get my bike repaired here, I should just come here for all my bicycle needs.”
Offer Test Rides and Demos
Bicycles are one of those things where you can’t just look at one online and know its a good fit, you have to try them out first. I’m sure we’ve all bought something online like clothing and when it came it ended up not fitting or it just wasn’t what you pictured. With brick and mortar bike shops, testing out different bikes is part of the fun of getting a new bicycle and ensures you get what you really like.
Have Bikes Pre-Assembled for Customers
If there’s one thing that ruins the fun of purchasing a new toy, it’s spending time assembling it after you bought one. This can be frustrating to customers in various ways. Some people may not be very handy. Others can possibly assemble the bicycle wrong. Heaven forbid one of the parts is missing. Finally, some people just don’t have the time.
The advantage of the bike shop is you can see a bike you like and pretty much ride it right out of there if you please, and that’ll give you a sale over those online sites.
You’re Somebody Your Customers Can Trust
Another problem with online shopping is just the fear of putting your payment information out there and buying something you haven’t seen in person. Entering your credit card information into a random website feels kind of sketchy for many consumers. A lot of people like the idea that if they buy from a brick and mortar, that building will be there if anything goes wrong.
You don’t get that feeling of security with many of these websites. Amazon may be a safer place to enter your information but many sellers on the platform can stretch the truth about the products being sold. By the time you realize what you’ve bought, it becomes a hassle to try to return.
You ever see something you want online and just gotta have it right now? Then you see estimated arrival date and you have to wait a whole month. Even worse, when you want to get a present before Christmas but it won’t arrive till after New Years?
What about when you see a very cheap item and you’re ready to checkout and the shipping cost is through the roof? It’s enough to cancel your purchase.
Buying in person from a brick and mortar store is just so much more convenient for these reasons and keeps you competitive against Amazon.
You can spend one on one time with customers so you might as well both get the best out of it and make personal recommendations on what the customer should buy. This will increase the customers overall satisfaction with their purchase knowing you helped them out choosing, and gives you the opportunity to either upsell some of your higher margin products or just build a stronger relationship with the consumer.
There’s only so much you can type into the Amazon search bar and it’ll never be the same as having someone right there to guide you through the shopping process.
There are way too many benefits to going to a mom and pop shop versus shopping online. What’s important is fulfilling these points and making sure your customers realize all these perks before even thinking about shopping online.