Many years ago Bike Shop Girl was just a blog, not a bike shop or e-commerce store, just a blog where I helped get more women and families biking and I made a LOT of daily content. To help me find my place in this new world, and taking a note out of my friend Ray's book, I'm going to start doing a week in review as I did about 8 years ago. This will be mostly bike related, but also just reflecting on the previous week as life and business change from COVID-19.
Where's My Head At?
For the first month of COVID-19 I was feeling grief. The loss of normal and what we should have been. I'm slowly picking myself up as the shop opens with a modified workload and I'm focusing more on "what do I want this to be?" This could mean anything depending on the moment, it could mean life as a whole, the bike shop, our direction as a family, and so much more. Skip forward to "what I am reading" to see how I'm helping mend my thoughts on where I want to go.
These are terrible times. Humans lost, jobs vanishing, and lives changed forever. Besides maintaining focusing on finding the silver lining, saving money, and your sanity, I hope you take some time for yourself and to map out where you want to be.
Bike Shop Girl Updates
- I'm still operating by appointment over for sales and service. I created a webpage I keep updated with current bikes available and rough sizing to help you shop from home. I'm currently servicing a ton of bikes, selling a lot of city bikes, and kids' bikes, and starting to help people replace one of their cars with a cargo bike to save money and to invest in themselves during this time.
- An article on my COVID-19 Protocol at the Shop
- A focus on more resources like this Kid's Bike Sizing Guide and a list of car seats that work with the Urban Arrow Maxi Cosi Adapter.
- More post-sales communication and resources available to customers as they go home and ride their new bike. Ideally, I have will something like this Tern GSD Top Tips for every cargo bike I sell.
Bike Industry & Advocacy Updates
There is a lot of rumbling about shops closing, brands firing staff, and cities opening streets to people. Here is what I'm keeping tabs on:
More and more cities are shutting down streets for the public to use for biking and walking with proper social distancing. A twitter friend of mine, Dr. Combs, has been working on Local Actions to Support Walking and Cycling During Social Distancing Dataset which as lead to a lot of great press like this Guardian Article. Has your city or town done anything to encourage safe cycling and walking? Let us know below.
I signed up for direct fulfillment from as many of my brands as possible. This means they ship directly to your house for a small fee that I pay. This helps me on the back end so I don't have to ship from my shop, and it saves time if I need to order, receive it at my shop, and then ship it back out. I'm using this for many things, even selling to people locally to avoid in-person meetings (sorry, I do miss you!) I will be turning on more products over the next few weeks to purchase online thanks to this direct fulfillment.
- Many large bike brands, distributors, and shops have laid off or furloughed employees. Bicycle Retailer. This is hard to hear and stomach but it isn't surprising as many bike shops I talk with are running at 30% of where they should be in April. They are busy but it is for lower-cost bikes and repairs.
What I'm Reading
Prepare for the Ultimate Gaslighting* - What world do you want to build when this pause in our life is ready to be lifted? It is time to think about that, what we want our new normal to be.
Artemis Fowl - I am getting ready for the movies
Essentialism - What do I want my work and bike shop to look like as we find a new normal? Many of my non-fiction reads right now are to help guide me in this search
How are you doing? How can a small local bike shop support you during these times?