Bike shops, especially small, local shops, often have trouble finding and connecting with potential customers. The combination of small advertising budgets, heavy competition, and fairly specialized product and service offerings often leaves bike shops hunting for customers, a pricey and time consuming endeavor. Likewise, there are plenty of customers out there who have trouble finding a local bike shop that suits their needs.
Now, a web-startup is looking to change all this. HelpaBikeShop.com is a free service for both retailers and consumers to help connect sellers with buyers around the world. Shops will be able to post their available stock and promotions to the website, which will in turn send a daily email to its bank of subscribers, who can then contact the bike shop if they see something they like. With the service, shops with excess inventory can liquidate it much more quickly, especially if they are willing to offer a deal that is competitive on a national level. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a win-win situation; retailers can move their goods quicker, and consumers will get access to a slew of special deals that may have gone unnoticed otherwise.
The service will effectively eliminate the geographic barriers that limit so many bike shops, allowing them to promote their deals and specials all around the world. Shops are checked against the National Bicycle Dealers Association registry and in order for an item to qualify, sellers must list it at a minimum of 20% below the MSRP. HelpaBikeShop.com currently has about 10,000 subscribers on their email list. Sign-up is free for shops and cyclists, and can be done on their website here.