The Bicycle Garage was an early supporter of ByK, being our second retailer in Sydney and they have since gone on to count ByK Bikes as their top selling brand in-store and a huge proponent of their success. ByK Bikes are now their biggest selling brand and have made them the number one bike store for locals to come to for kids bikes. We spoke with owners, Jeremy and Marty to get some insights into their success with ByK. Why did you start stocking ByK Bikes?
Originally when we opened in 2009 we wanted to be a niche adult bicycle shop with no real big focus on kids bikes. We started off selling Mongoose in the kids ranges only. Our agent mentioned ByK and we got to meet Warren early on at a trade show. We were impressed with the design concept and decided to give it a go. We were the second store in Sydney to stock ByK so got on board early and it has been a success story for us. For the last 6 years ByK have been our sole kids bike brand. How many models do you stock?
28. We have not stocked the CX range yet. We have only sold a dozen or so of the Road bikes so it is a niche market for kids bikes around here. There are good cycleways in the inner-west - more than anywhere else in Sydney, hence why ByK does so well in this area. How much of an impact does stocking the full range have on your sales?
Huge impact. The full range highlights that ByK shows a commitment to kids bike design and visually it is appealing to the customer.
Customers can see that ByK has a commitment to kids bike design when they see the full range lined up. What is your top selling model?
E-350 in red or blue. We find the versatility of this bike size means it suits a large range of kids Who is your typical ByK customer and do you find that one parent over the other asks the most questions / has been the one to do the research?
We're a real community shop, nestled in amongst homes, not on a typical shopping strip. So we usually see just one parent, often the Mum, doing the initial research into the ByK bikes. They come in, pick up a catalogue and come back for purchase. We think 90% of people taking home a catalogue come back to purchase.
Having ByK catalogues available is beneficial. About 90% of people taking home a catalogue come back to purchase. What do you find is the best selling point of the ByK Brand?
The ergonomic design and the light weight features, are what sells easily. Also, the ByK website has also been hugely helpful for us - it allows parents to do comprehensive research and understand the design concept and purchase decisions with minimal convincing from us. The customisable stickers are also a huge selling feature!
Being a practicing Physiotherapist previous to owning Bicycle Garage, Jeremy says that the ergonomic benefits of ByK bikes are a standout feature and one that he finds easy to sell to parents. What would you say the rate of return is for a ByK customer coming back to upgrade to another ByK?
50-70% What is the best selling point of the 540 range and what type of customer is likely to buy a 540 bike over another brand/model?
The 540 range has been surprisingly good for us. Comparing it against the 24" MTB models which we sell 3 different brands of, ByK is definitely the most expensive but often is the preferred purchase. We also find the x3i gearing is less complicated for the 7/8 year olds who are just starting out in bike riding so a great feature.
The 540x3i red model is a great seller because of its 'unisex' looks and appeal. What is the best selling point of the 620 range and what type of customer is likely to buy a 620 bike over another brand/model?
Previously we had only stocked this range at Christmas but we sold so many that we now stock them all year round. We find the girls models sell the best. A big selling point is that they are light enough for parents, especially Mums, to be able to pick up and put onto car racks. How have you managed to fit 30 ByK bike models on your shop floor? What is your top display tip for ByK?
We have a long lineup of ByK's out the front of our store - both on the ground and hanging. It is a feature of our shop front and a testament to the fact that ByK is our biggest selling brand in the store. What percentage of your shop sales are kids bikes? And are kids bikes sales rates similar to adult bikes or have they grown faster?
80% of our shop sales are kids bikes and we only stock ByK up till the 24" sizes where we introduce other brands. What percentage of new customers come in for ByK Bikes and end up being a 'family' customer whereby other members of the family end up buying bikes too?
Quite a lot. ByK attracts customers we wouldn't have always got. We hold 'shop rides' which attracts customers that haven't necessarily bought their bikes from us but they come in to buy their kids bikes from us.
ByK attracts customers we wouldn't have always got. Do you find most ByK Customers arrive in the store knowing what they want, having already done their research? Is this typical for other kids bikes models/brands that you sell?
It is growing more and more. There's a lot of word of mouth in our area - parents seeing kids on ByKs locally. We also support local schools with raffles - donating bikes to local schools so that extends our 'marketing' reach to local parents greatly. After finding out about the brand, they then do some initial research before they arrive.
On another note, the Bicycle Garage are also listed as a cafe
and so it is no doubt that a lot of regular customers certainly come in knowing what they want - their daily fix of caffeine! Being a local, neighbourhood bike shop, the smell of freshly ground coffee beans not only encourages a community atmosphere but equalises the bike grease smell that you either love or hate (!), and reduces the trepidation of walking into a bike shop for locals who like to ride but don’t consider themselves enthusiasts. Do you use social media to promote your range of ByK Bikes? If so, how often?
We began using social media last year but don't use it primarily to connect with current or prospective customers. We don't have a website and prefer the local shop profile that not having a big online presence gives us. Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BGLilyfield