If you know everything there is to know about bicycles and have a lot of passion for design, then you are a perfect candidate to start your own business building bikes. There are already a lot of big brands and even small boutique bikes out there, so how will yours stand out?
There are a lot of ways to make sure that your bikes find their ideal customers. When you have a good idea that sets your bikes apart, then this is a great starting point. You just need to make sure that you have what you need to get started, and then follow through.
In this article, we will go over what you need to do to make sure that your bike shop is successful and can reach your goals.
What you need?
To get started, you need to have the proper equipment. You can only get so far if you aren’t able to build the bikes according to your standards if you don’t have the right shop equipment.
Building the frame is going to be the most intensive part of the process and will require the most tools for the job. An arc welder, a vise, a hacksaw with sturdy blades and a grinder are some of the essentials that you need for frame building.
Then it’s just a matter of having the right tools like many different sized allen wrenches, pliers, and wrenches. It all depends on how much of the process you plan to do yourself. For instance, if you also want to do powder painting yourself and not have to outsource it, then you’ll need to buy the whole set up. Get the best oven for powder coating that you can afford, and a rack, for example.
Make sure you know the scope of the work that you will do so you can have all the necessary tools and equipment ready for when you get your first orders. That way you can do things the right way from the beginning.
How to market yourself
Once you have your shop ready to start making bicycles, the trick is to get the word out there. Marketing is as essential as the actual building of the bicycles. If you are building using the most advanced material possible and with a style that everybody would love, it won’t matter at all if nobody knows about them.
You’ll need to have some prototypes built to be able to have something to promote. Once you have them then it is time to start using them on a social media campaign.
The key is to remember that people are not buying a bicycle to get from Point A to Point B. Well, yes, in essence they are but it goes beyond that. People are buying bicycles to fit into their ideal lifestyle. Use social media to convey that these bikes will help people live their dream life and focus on that type of content.
Then, when the follower list grows you can start getting them into your sales funnel. Have a landing page where you can collect emails so you can have a legion of rabid fans instead of just customers.
The sales funnel will guide them through the sales process so they will end up buying either in your store, or online if you have an ecommerce store to sell them.
Build a brand around the lifestyle theme and become a familiar face in the sector. Whatever the lifestyle is will be fine. If you are building city bikes then have a lot of content around farmer’s markets and craft beer pubs. If you’re building mountain bikes then content in dramatic scenery in the woods will resonate with people.
How will you sell?
These days you have a much wider range to find your market, so you are not relegated to a brick and mortar store. If you feel that locally you will have a better chance to sell, then you should find the right location that will help you attract locally.
Otherwise, cast a wider net and sell your bikes online and you may find that you have a better chance at success. When you have a truly niche bicycle where the people that would be interested are spread out then online is the way to go.
Set up a good payment processing page that is secure and easy to use. Then, have a good way to package and ship your bikes quickly and efficiently.