Orientation + On the Road
Do you remember the first time you got on a bike? Did you feel scared or nervous? What about the first time you were on a road bike or mountain bike? The first time you used clipless pedals? Sometimes we live in biking for so long we don’t always remember what it was like to do it for the first time or after a long absence. When you’re planning your new rider series, think through all of the things you wish you would have known to help you feel more comfortable during the early stages of being a baby biker. Build trust through this information sharing to make yourself indispensable and the expert your customers will return to when they’re ready for a new bike, services or accessories.
During your in-store orientation, go over the basics of what it means to do a road ride.
Bike terminology and anatomy, how to make adjustments to the saddle to be more comfortable, how to fit yourself to your bike
What to bring — water, snacks, helmet, lights, layers
What to wear — chamois, jersey, why they’re comfortable, how to fit and wear a helmet properly
Riding in a group, hand signals, safety measures the group will utilize
Offer a complimentary look over of anyone’s bike to make sure they’re safe
On the road
When planning your routes, pick something fun, easy, scenic and safe for Week 1. Each subsequent week, add difficulty and length to help go over new skills like climbing and shifting
Revisit briefly everything covered in orientation
Walk everyone through the route: “We’ll go left, which is north, on Main Street at the Taco Hut.” (We suggest offering a map on Ride Spot as backup.)
Allow people to ask questions before getting on the bike
Practice good group riding
Your middle support rider can ride up and down the line with each person, spending some time talking to them, asking questions, allowing for questions and giving them feedback. Again, revisit what you wish you would have known when you were new to riding.
These tips and tricks are meant to enhance the experience of the ride, encourage abilities, and give positive feedback
Also have that mid group support check out the bikes, this can be a selling opportunity back at the shop for services
At the end of the ride, provide snacks, beverages, and an opportunity to hang out and for the riders to connect
When everyone is on the bike together the highest priority is to connect person to person, rider to rider. When you engage that new bike rider in a way that is outside of a sales environment, you are developing a relationship that will continue in the shop and down the road. A great experience by a new rider will be remembered and shared to their family and friends.
Brandee Lepak says “Just try it.”
In Part 5 — our final installment of this series — we’ll talk about the return on investment, ways to track your sales, and how to keep it interesting to keep new bike riders and customers rolling in.