Hello to 2020! I took some time on the first day of January to make a video talking through what I learned in my first year of business, and what I'll be working on in 2020 (it is a lot!) The video is below. If video isn't your thing, your kids are over your shoulder, or you just don't have the time then scroll past the video to my typed recap!
What I learned in 2019 (my first year owning a bike shop)
1. My bike shop is very unique and that is why I opened it. I didn't find the family-focused, and high attention to detail anywhere else, so I started it. It took me giving a couple of employees a few trials to fully understand that what makes my bike shop unique is me. A mother, a once marketing agency director, a great mechanic, and a person with the passion to help families bike more.
2. In the spring of 2019, I moved to running the shop by appointment for all new bike consultations and bike service estimates. My friends and loyal customers know they can stop in anytime my bike is outside but this appointment system has allowed me to provide the best customer experience and keeping the overhead lower. Sure, I'm sure I am losing business but if you are looking for expert service or 1:1 attention with your family then you'll respect the appointment system and really appreciate it. Some of my deepest relationships this year outside of my family have been the conversations I get to have while customers sit at my bar top as I work on their bike or finish installing their accessories to their new bike.
3. Not all "city bikes" are created equal and after testing out carrying a lot of electric bikes I have decided to focus on city style bikes that can safely carry children on the back if needed. This includes the Cannondale Quick line of city bikes that I carry mostly for my high schoolers and neighborhood friends that need something affordable but durable to use as an everyday bike.
4. My specialty is families. This sounds silly as we are a "family cyclery" but that is my superpower in all of this.
5. Do it for the kids. Helping kids learn how to pedal in my parking lot and growing our Kidical Mass monthly bike ride kept me grounded this year. I started this bike shop as it is my own unique way to making this world a better place for my kids, and that is something I tried to remind myself every day when the days were long sometimes.
6. Climate change is real and I have to help people get on the bike and leave the car at home. Hashtag #leavethecarathome
My Thoughts and Goals for 2020
1. Focusing on my superpower of families. Helping families bike, leaving the car at home when possible, and getting more kids on bikes. That's it, sounds simple right?
2. Telling better stories and make more content. I sold MANY bikes this year due to a photo or video posted on social media to show people how to use a bike differently. For example, grocery shopping, carrying kids and beating the zoo parking line, bringing my 110 lb dog to work every day, and what gear to use for winter biking.
3. A new podcast! Bike Here will be launching later this month (January 2020) and will be a city biking podcast focused on taking my mission of helping people to get on the bike and leave the car at home. Education, culture, profiles and more.
4. Building a local community hub for biking, walking and "strolling" in Stapleton, our community in NE Denver, with a few other local active living advocates. Curating events, top places to stroll & roll, and highlighting topics like new bike lanes or trail closures. See the bones of the project here: Stroll & Roll Stapleton
Wrapping It Up
Okay, 4 massive goals and I'm looking forward to knocking them out of the park with your help!
THANK YOU to everyone that has helped me in this bike shop journey so far. I can't wait to see what 2020 has to offer.