A Guide To Buying Bicycles Online vs. In-Store: Scrolling Your Way To The Perfect Bike

Healthy, convenient, and cost-effective. It’s clear why cycling is an ever-popular form of transportation and recreation. However, if you’re thinking of joining the eco and health-conscious bunch, you’ll soon discover that the proverbial “easy as riding a bike” doesn’t apply to the shopping part. Why is it so hard to buy a bike? Two wheels are connected by a chain and frame and operated by pedaling.

Ah, if only it was that simple. There’s a variety of factors you need to consider before you visit a bike shop. Starting with the type of bicycle and finishing with the bike store itself.

While the type, built, performance, and additional features depend solely on your needs and personal preference, knowing where is the best place to buy a bicycle is also an important part of the equation.

Online or in-store? Is an online cycle purchase a smart decision? Keep reading to get the low-down and your money’s worth.

Perks Of Shopping For Bicycles Online

Novice or pro, when shopping for bikes online you have a virtually endless pool of specs, reviews, articles, and videos easily available at your fingertips.

You can compare performance, features, and users’ opinions and make an informed choice without being tempted by a savvy, yet pushy salesperson. You can also escape the awkward “do you have it in pink” getaway strategy when the price goes way beyond your budget.

When browsing the inventory of an online bicycle store, you can compare prices in seconds and get the ultimate bang for your buck. Speaking of prices, there’s a great chance the bike shop on the cloud has heaven-like deals compared to its brick-and-mortar cousin.

Wondering why? Mainly because there’s less margin to be made thanks to the fewer layers preceding the end purchase. Sounds amazing, right? Indeed, but don’t be quick to click order just yet.

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Where Is The Best Place To Buy A Bicycle Online?

Remember, when shopping for bicycles online, you aren’t only comparing bikes—you’re vetting the seller as well. You need to ensure that you’re buying from a reputable, registered business that offers a secure, fully-encrypted shopping experience.


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    Otherwise, you’re at risk of receiving a faulty or a knock-off bike. In the worst-case scenario, you might not even receive anything at all and be ghosted by customer service.

    Once you’re absolutely certain that the business is trustworthy, check whether they offer hassle-free returns and refunds. This adds to the convenience and peace of mind in case you’re not satisfied with your purchase.

    purchase bikes

    Bonus Tip: If you’re a little tight on funds, but got your eye on something that’s a bit over your budget, check whether the store offers flexible payment options that allow you to spread out the cost in several interest-free installments.

    Other Things To Consider

    There are two sides to every story. Since e-commerce is still a fairly new concept, it’s only natural that it’s not quite the ideal shopping experience yet, at least in some cases. To ensure your online ventures are worth your while, try to keep the following things in mind.

    • If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
    • Shipping, duties, and taxes can significantly add up to the price.
    • Your decision will mainly be based on guesswork rather than a first-hand feel.
    • Not all reviews are credible.
    • There are plenty of scams online.
    • Your bicycle will probably arrive in a box with the assembling required.

    Perks Of Shopping For Bicycles In-Store

    Even though online bicycle shops are picking up steam in recent years, brick-and-mortar stores are still considered the safest choice by many.

    They’re a way to get up close and personal with the bicycles, compare different models in real-time, and get expert advice right there on the spot. Oh, and yes, maybe take it for a test spin.

    bikes in store

    Shopping in-store eliminates all the guesswork, so you know exactly what you’re buying. What’s more, most of the bikes in physical stores require little to no assembling.

    You can ask for help to get it all set and drive your bicycle directly from the store. With all your questions answered with no bots or trolls clouding your judgment, buying in-store is a safe choice, especially for novice cyclists.

    Other Things To Consider

    When shopping from a physical store, you should either know what you’re looking for or try your best not to fall in love with the first bike you see. Heading to the store completely clueless leaves you and your budget vulnerable. Not saying that everyone’s after your money, but then again, it’s the staff’s job to convince you into buying.

    • Here are a few of the things you should keep in mind before visiting your local shop.
    • Salespeople may try to sell you features and gear you don’t really need, so don’t take their words as absolute truth.
    • Brick-and-mortar and staff overheads can lead to higher markups in price.
    • Transportation and returns can be a hassle especially if you own a small vehicle.
    • Comparing prices between different stores takes time, money, and effort.
    • Brick-and-mortar stores may have limited stock.


    The Golden Mean

    Since it’s difficult to decide which option is better, you can always look for stores that offer both, online and in-store service. You can get your smarts online, consult the salespeople in person or via phone or e-mail and head out to the store to get a first-hand feel for the products and try on clothes and safety equipment.

    This way, you can get the best of the two worlds and be absolutely certain that your hard-earned money is well-spent. Now that you know the ins and outs of shopping for bikes online and in-store, you can start your hunt for the perfect two-wheeler and reap the numerous benefits of cycling.

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    A Guide To Buying Bicycles Online vs. In-Store: Scrolling Your Way To The Perfect Bike — Bike Hacks