It may seem at little odd that an online store writes a blog on shopping at local bike shops, to us it’s not.
At PEDALIT, like most businesses today, you the customer demands the choice on when, where and how you shop. As a business we simply need to give you as many of the options available. Our goal is to give you products that delight, how you get them is your choice, for that reason, our products are available online and in good local bike shops.
We grew up in local bike shops, for us they have always been the meeting place of the sport. Long before the café scene, we often started and finished rides from bike shops, loitered, read magazines, squeezed brake levers, picked up bikes for weight comparison and drank tea. We talked about last week’s race, then we talked about this week’s race, we talked about bikes we had and bikes we wanted. There were ride and race posters pinned on notice boards, information about upcoming events, and always a bit of encouragement to enter and have a go. These weren’t just shops, they were the hub of cycling culture and community.
The world of retail has changed. Technology has placed demands on traditional business models, and us as customers have embraced the change. Through these challenges there is still a constant, local bike shop culture and community. Yes, if buying PEDALIT online works for you, go for it, but we would also encourage you to get out from behind the keyboard and build a local bike shop relationship, you are missing out if you don’t.
I have often thought of bike shops as the Foreign Legion, it is where the young cyclists want to run off to and where the old cycling soldiers end up. For that reason, there is every chance when you walk into one you will meet someone who lives cycling, who is not just standing there to work the till, they are there because they are ready to share the passion. Their experience is at the hub of the sport; every great cycling community has an equally great local bike shop.
They are not just retailers, they are coaches, motivators, advisors and ride organisers. They tell you where to ride, local groups and clubs to join, they give you tips for your next gran fondo, or tell the best mountain bike rides in the area. They organise shop rides to give you confidence to ride with others and the small tips that keep you safe. They tell you what to buy and what not to, they make the shoe fit and the bike comfortable. When you wheel your wounded machine in after a stack, they are also the people that encourage you to get back out there and push your bike to the front of the workshop que to make it a reality. When you get real serious they also help you refine your machine and position for speed, and they are often the first people you thank in your Facebook post after the event.
So we passionately believe PEDALIT is the best product for you and your bike care, how you buy it is up to you, but so much of the above we can’t give you. If it works for you to buy online we are ready to serve, but so too are our retail partners. Make sure you invest in building your cycling culture and community.
Respect the ride.