The Bike Shop

12

Showrooming and your local LBS (Read 22 times)

    This article about sums it up.

     

    Showroom

     

    I buy a good deal of my bike stuff online. One of my favorite online retailers is Universal Cycle.

     

    Most bike shops today use QBP and can get you what ever you want. I probably do more of the opposite of showrooming. Most of my research is done online and then I take my wish list down the block. He's either competetive or he's not. Most times he is.

     

    The article talks about the big box stores. Until recently the vast majority of bike shops weere Mom and Pop organizations. Today we have companies like performance bike, Sheels sports and Dicks sporting goods that have amped up thier showrooms and floor space for the cycling market. Like the corner drug store and the 4 isle grocery store, I suspect the Ma and Pa LBS is in danger of extinction.

    www.hplg.net  The Human Powered League - Solo Cup Series - Trail Building

      This article about sums it up.

       

      Showroom

       

      I buy a good deal of my bike stuff online. One of my favorite online retailers is Universal Cycle.

       

      Most bike shops today use QBP and can get you what ever you want. I probably do more of the opposite of showrooming. Most of my research is done online and then I take my wish list down the block. He's either competetive or he's not. Most times he is.

       

      The article talks about the big box stores. Until recently the vast majority of bike shops weere Mom and Pop organizations. Today we have companies like performance bike, Sheels sports and Dicks sporting goods that have amped up thier showrooms and floor space for the cycling market. Like the corner drug store and the 4 isle grocery store, I suspect the Ma and Pa LBS is in danger of extinction.

       

      Maybe I'm confused with what you wrote, but it seems as if your comment about "buy(ing) a good deal of my bike stuff online" contradicts your other comment about doing "most of (your) research online and then (you) take (your) wish list [to your local bike shop]."

      (I recognize that "a good deal of" could be much less than "most").

       

      For me, it's possible that people may perceive me to be a "showroomer".  My brother in law is a local bike shop manager, and I buy from their shop.  But, his shop is 1200 miles from me, and I occasionally shop the big bike retailer locally (between 10,000 & 12,000 square foot in shop) to determine what I might need or want.  I could do the same online, but I don't mind seeing 3 dimensional stuff before buying them.  Often times though, I just get recommendations from my BIL regarding new toys they have access to through QBP that their salesguy tells them about or that he sees from their annual conference in the dead of winter in Minnesota.

       

      Regardless, I've never liked the word "schmuck" (and 'almost' take offense to that word being used by anybody) and think that the article generalizes too much regarding things relating to consumer behavior.  Times have changed from the days when Mom & Pop stores were essential for our daily lives.  I believe that smaller town America (possibly your town in Iowa) are impacted more than larger cities.  I know there was a lot of chatter about "Home Depot" or "WalMart" destroying the small town I lived in years ago.

       

      But, I understand your concern for the local bike shops.

       

      Cheers,
      Brian

      2014 Goals:

      #1: Do what I can do. <DOING>

      #2: 365 Hours training <NOPE, INJURED>

       

        From the article:

         

        "The bike shop might not be able to sell it as cheap, but you’ll save on shipping, you’ll get personalized service and most importantly, your schmucky cheapskate actions won’t be slowly eroding the business of a local bike shop owner and the entire bike industry as a whole."

         

        I've always felt that the internet and online retail is the dagger in the heart of local business. Its also recking havoc on State sales tax revenue as online purchases are not collecting taxes for the State like a local business is.

         

        I also research my needs online and shop the locals first to see if I can get what I want at a reasonable close price to the online price and if its close, I'll buy local. These local businesses are paying taxes in your city and/or state and are employing your friends and neighbors. That is something people need to start thinging about before those jobs are gone.

         

        I just watch a tv show about an Amazon clothing warehouse that was completely computerized and used robots to retrieve products that were ordered online and bring them to one worker that packaged them for shipment. I can't remember how many employess were replaced by the system but it obviouslty enough to justify the investment.

         

        The pain that hurts the worse is the imagined pain. One of the most difficult arts of racing is learning to ignore the imagined pain and just live with the present pain (which is always bearable.) - Jeff

         

        2014 Goals:

         

        Stay healthy

        Enjoy life

         

          I just watch a tv show about an Amazon clothing warehouse that was completely computerized and used robots to retrieve products that were ordered online and bring them to one worker that packaged them for shipment. I can't remember how many employess were replaced by the system but it obviouslty enough to justify the investment.

           

          Who built the robots and the warehouse infrastructure?

          A robot?

          2014 Goals:

          #1: Do what I can do. <DOING>

          #2: 365 Hours training <NOPE, INJURED>

           

            When I said I buy a good deal online I was referring primarily to Ebay. I buy 3 or 4 frames a year and build them up with used components. I turn these bikes over to support my habit. Most times barely breaking even.

             

            My view maybe skewed. Small town farm boy who has seen the demise of the family farm, the corner grocery store, the local hardware store and Rose's restaurant. Just so the public can get thier cheap meat, shipped in produce, cheap home goods so they can go out and spend it on a $5 cup of over priced coffee.

             

            I'd be willing to bet that my household hasn't spent over $150 at Walmart in the last year...I actually take pride in that. Not sure what my point is there but I'm leaving it there.

             

            I think anyone that walks into a brick and morter, locally owned Ma and Pa buisness with the primary purpose of showrooming is a schmuck. I spent 7 years as a local retailer competing against the mail order catalogs. I've dealt with showroomers. Eventually I went bankrupt. That was 10 years ago and I still get calls from people who want me to work on thier equipment. On site service they got from me but don't from the catalog houses...

             

            I'm tightly ingrained with the cycling culture. It's a lifestyle...several actually, that I really would like see stick around. It's cool to watch a customer roll a 1971 Masi into the shop and listen to the mechanic identify the parts and orgins of the bike and he knows exactly where he can find this or that to keep the bike original. Not something you'll get at Scheels.

             

            So in the name of cheaper, faster, tax free...

             

             

            Who built the robots and the warehouse infrastructure?

            A robot?

             

            There isn't a robot built in this country.

             

            The warehouse was likely built by an Out of Town General Contractor with out of town, and most likely out of country workers.

            www.hplg.net  The Human Powered League - Solo Cup Series - Trail Building


            Needs more cowbell!

              I'd be willing to bet that my household hasn't spent over $150 at Walmart in the last year...I actually take pride in that. Not sure what my point is there but I'm leaving it there.

               

              I'm with you.  My DH, on the other hand...he'll go into WM to save a buck and I refuse to go with him when he does so.  Literally across the street is a Meijer, which is pricier, but is owned by a "local" family who has done a TON of beneficial things to the area, including funding several rail-trail projects and have an amazing botanical garden with an outdoor concert facility and an art gallery.  When Fred Meijer died I cried.  He was a good man who shared his wealth to benefit our community.  His employees are provided good benefits.

               

              The community we recently moved from is fighting the construction of a WM store.  It's a smallish community and there are already at least 7 WM stores within an hour drive of the area.

              I shoot pretty things! ~

              '14 Goals:

              • 6 duathlons (1 Olympic distance)

              • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)

                Mr. Schmit, the word 'schmuck' is not appropriate in the english language.  There are alternate words in the english language to convey what you're trying to say.

                Other than that, I truly understand your post and how you feel.  In many regards, I agree.

                 

                I believe, though, that every brick and morter small town retail shop has a HUGE opportunity to expand their business besides the 'locals'.  Customers are built on relationships, and relationships are not always built through a handshake and a smile.  These are the 2000s, and we all need to adapt to the environment we have today.


                Cheers,
                Brian

                 

                When I said I buy a good deal online I was referring primarily to Ebay. I buy 3 or 4 frames a year and build them up with used components. I turn these bikes over to support my habit. Most times barely breaking even.

                 

                My view maybe skewed. Small town farm boy who has seen the demise of the family farm, the corner grocery store, the local hardware store and Rose's restaurant. Just so the public can get thier cheap meat, shipped in produce, cheap home goods so they can go out and spend it on a $5 cup of over priced coffee.

                 

                I'd be willing to bet that my household hasn't spent over $150 at Walmart in the last year...I actually take pride in that. Not sure what my point is there but I'm leaving it there.

                 

                I think anyone that walks into a brick and morter, locally owned Ma and Pa buisness with the primary purpose of showrooming is a schmuck. I spent 7 years as a local retailer competing against the mail order catalogs. I've dealt with showroomers. Eventually I went bankrupt. That was 10 years ago and I still get calls from people who want me to work on thier equipment. On site service they got from me but don't from the catalog houses...

                 

                I'm tightly ingrained with the cycling culture. It's a lifestyle...several actually, that I really would like see stick around. It's cool to watch a customer roll a 1971 Masi into the shop and listen to the mechanic identify the parts and orgins of the bike and he knows exactly where he can find this or that to keep the bike original. Not something you'll get at Scheels.

                 

                So in the name of cheaper, faster, tax free...

                 

                 

                There isn't a robot built in this country.

                 

                The warehouse was likely built by an Out of Town General Contractor with out of town, and most likely out of country workers.

                 

                And, there are, in fact, robots built within this country.

                 

                MTA... and while my blood pressure is still slightly elevated.... It's not a "local LBS"... it's a "LBS".  Cheers,

                2014 Goals:

                #1: Do what I can do. <DOING>

                #2: 365 Hours training <NOPE, INJURED>

                 

                   

                  I'm with you.  My DH, on the other hand...he'll go into WM to save a buck and I refuse to go with him when he does so.  Literally across the street is a Meijer, which is pricier, but is owned by a "local" family who has done a TON of beneficial things to the area, including funding several rail-trail projects and have an amazing botanical garden with an outdoor concert facility and an art gallery.  When Fred Meijer died I cried.  He was a good man who shared his wealth to benefit our community.  His employees are provided good benefits.

                   

                  The community we recently moved from is fighting the construction of a WM store.  It's a smallish community and there are already at least 7 WM stores within an hour drive of the area.

                   

                  I hate shopping at Walmart, but I have a big family and I sometimes go just for the cheap bread. Our local Walmart donates to programs like Breakfast with Santa put on by the fire department. I live in a town of about 10 000 people and it was a battle when that place was being built.

                   

                  As far as showrooming, there aren't that many things that I feel comfortable buying online. Any big purchases like a bike or appliances, I would do in person. I like buying local and supporting those smaller shops when I can. Service is worth something and you don't get that online.

                    Ok, replace the word schmuck with thief.

                     

                    What robots are built in the US ?

                     

                    And Robot is a pretty generic term. I can assemble a couple of servo motors and parts, write some code and call it a robot. I'm talking about what you would find in a manufacturing plant. Uncrate, teach a program and put to use.

                     

                    Off the top of my head.

                    GE / Fanuc....No

                    Motoman...No

                    Nachi...No

                    ABB...No

                    Siemans...No

                     

                    And sorry for adding local...kinda like a hot water heater huh?

                     

                    Not every business owner is out to make it rich. Many are satisfied making a modest living. They took thier risks and weathered the storms decades ago or longer when they bought thier shops, invested in the inventory and paid the mortgage. At the least they deserve is a forthright customer. Not someone underhandedly using thier investment to save a buck.

                     

                    So this is 2000's. It does not make it right to showroom.

                    www.hplg.net  The Human Powered League - Solo Cup Series - Trail Building

                      What robots are built in the US ?

                       

                      And Robot is a pretty generic term. I can assemble a couple of servo motors and parts, write some code and call it a robot. I'm talking about what you would find in a manufacturing plant. Uncrate, teach a program and put to use.

                       

                      Off the top of my head.

                      GE / Fanuc....No

                      Motoman...No

                      Nachi...No

                      ABB...No

                      Siemans...No

                      Truth is I shouldn't have made that comment... I don't know.

                      But, I do know that my father in law was born and raised in the US, and is an engineer professor who wrote a textbook titled "Robotics and Automated Systems".  He's worked in the industry for years prior to being an educator.

                      I do know that he teaches robotics and has built robotic devices, but I do NOT know with absolute certainty that there are major robot manufacturing plants in the US.

                      So, I concede any argument relating to who makes the physical robots.

                      2014 Goals:

                      #1: Do what I can do. <DOING>

                      #2: 365 Hours training <NOPE, INJURED>

                       

                        I've been involed with the installation, programming and maintaining of robots for over 20 years.

                         

                        If you have ever taken a peek (I need to chnge that picture) at my profile it says  Industrial Controls Tech. I think my actual title is Engineering Technical Specialist. Industrial Automation is my job.

                         

                        I can not think of an American made robot. A google search for american made industrial robot returned nothing.

                        www.hplg.net  The Human Powered League - Solo Cup Series - Trail Building

                          My cousin is a UPS coder and engineer for the robotic conveyor belts within their warehouse(s).

                          He may not make the robot or install them, but he's enjoying a wonderful career thanks to the robot industry.

                           

                          I'm sure (or better stated, "I'm guessing") you're having a wonderful career thanks to the robot industry as well.


                          (Yes, this is far from the "local LBS" thread in terms of subject, but...)

                          2014 Goals:

                          #1: Do what I can do. <DOING>

                          #2: 365 Hours training <NOPE, INJURED>

                           

                            I'm enjoying a wonderful career because I am working in the food industry. A highly competitive, very dynamic and highly automated industry that does not lend itself well to shipping manufacturing duties overseas.

                             

                            I'm enjoying this because I have a strong apptitude...the ability to see beyond the start button so to speak. A marketable ability.

                             

                            I can't say that for many of the people I have worked with over the years that were in other types of industrial manufacturing. I am no longer self employed because the 80% of the 80/20 rule is no longer here.

                             

                            And as much as I hate to admit it, Our labor force where I work is down thanks to automation. What we can't do thru automation is performed by contract labor at 1/3rd the rate of a regular hourly employee. Would you like to take a guess where our largest pricing pressure comes from? They were named earlier in this thread.

                            www.hplg.net  The Human Powered League - Solo Cup Series - Trail Building

                              I don't go in the LBS much but when I do It's not to showroom. Mostly I'm just in the LBS for a tube, bar tape, or a sale. I did buy a bike and some other parts from the LBS last summer tho.

                               

                              This is me:

                               

                              If you’re a true cheapskate who does all his own wrenching and simply refuses to pay full retail for products, then either stick with quality online retailers without showrooming your local bike shop, or better yet, buy what you seek slightly used from private sellers on Craigslist or eBay.

                               

                              It's fun to casually piece together a bike on the cheap from ebay. Having built a few bikes this way I've noticed that some ebay retailers are LBSes.

                               

                              Oh, I don't shop at Walmart at all.

                                 

                                If you’re a true cheapskate who does all his own wrenching and simply refuses to pay full retail for products, then either stick with quality online retailers without showrooming your local bike shop, or better yet, buy what you seek slightly used from private sellers on Craigslist or eBay.

                                 

                                It's fun to casually piece together a bike on the cheap from ebay. Having built a few bikes this way I've noticed that some ebay retailers are LBSes.

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                That's me too. If you have the patience you can snag some pretty good deals on Ebay for parts. Yes, many parts I have purchased in auction came from brick and mortar retailers. My own bike shop does this too. Usually on something like customer upgrades where they might change out a 105 group  for Dura Ace.  You have to watch out for counterfeit parts. I ended up with a set of counterfeit Velocity rims and a Ritchety Stem.

                                 

                                My last three bikes, the ones I keep, have been built using all new parts. At least one of the frames and all of the components were purchased thru my bike shop. I did all my shopping online and took the grocery list down the road where he was able to match or beat the total price.

                                 

                                When I need small things like cable ends, stem spacers etc, he's rarely charged me. He's also only 6 blocks away.

                                www.hplg.net  The Human Powered League - Solo Cup Series - Trail Building

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