So I've been obsessing over buying a new bike this past month. Like many in my age demographic I use the internet to inform my purchasing decisions and find the availability of products. When purchasing electronics, using the internet is a snap. Reviews are plentiful and almost every store has an online portal that lets you purchase the item online, gives you a price and inventory at their locations.
When it comes to bike shopping, however, most LBS have either no presence or a very feeble presence online. The only exception I can think of is Sweet Pete's, Broadway Cycle and the Urbane Cyclist. However, even those stores can be made a lot better.
I can't tell you the number of times I've gone to a LBS's website clicked on their Bikes link only to find a page of links to the manufacturers and not the specific bikes they have in stock. So frustrating!!
Wow you carry Gary Fisher bikes!!! I'm assuming you carry every Gary Fisher bike that has been manufactured since you don't bother mentioning what you have in stock.
You also need to consider that many individuals looking for a bike don't have a car handy and going to these far flung places is very difficult. For me, if a store doesn't tell me the bikes they have in stock, I'm not even going to bother going there.
I completely agree that you need to try out a bike before you buy it but if you're looking for something specific it helps to know before spending the time to get to the bike shop that they at least have something that piques your interest.
So this is my plea. Hire some out of work web-page designer and get your store on the web. You don't even have to sell stuff online. Heck, you could just take a quick course online on how to make a web page, and make it yourself.
Just let people know "Hey this is what we have and this is how much it costs. Drop on by and give it a spin" You'll be surprised at the number of people who will find your site and go out of their way to visit your shop.