Question for those in the LBS industry...
I went into my LBS today with a wheel problem. My LBS mainly stocks Trek MTB's, hybrids and comfort bikes with an occasional beach cruiser, never a road bike. They have some other brand BMX bikes but I'm not sure what as they are not my thing and way to small for me. But all of their 'full size' bikes are Trek unless is something on consignment.
On to my question:
When I went in today I saw from the front door a pair of drop bars sitting toward the back of the shop. I make my way to it fully expecting to see a nice mid to high end Trek road bike to drool over. I have been wondering why there was never a road bike on display since the first time I set foot in there. Not wanting to question the owners management skills I kept my mouth shut as he runs a one man shop and has been around for around 15 years so who am I to question the way he dose things.
When I got to the back what I saw was a mid level Motobicane (105/Tiagra, aluminum frame, $900, Small BD sticker on the hanging tag). Why would a Long time Trek dealer bring in what most would consider a sub standard bike? This LBS at one time carried C'Dale as well but a LBS 30 miles away into Oregon (I'm in California) started selling C'Dales as well and there is no sales tax there so where do you think people went to buy there $1,500+ bikes (You cant blame them).
Is this a sign my LBS is having problems? Or am I just over reacting? (<--probably the case)
the bike made me do it
You are over reacting. Motobecane is not a sub standard brand, well it may be to some, but not compared to Trek. If we are comparing it to something like Cervelo, then yes.
It sounds like the store specializes in bikes to the average cyclist. They cannot sell everything, but I am sure they will order you a Trek road bike.
I've found many shops don't carry high end bikes cause it's jujst money sitting around on the showfloor. Too big a risk losing money if it doesn't sell. Same reason most shops won't stock tandms eventhough they will sell them on a special order. I found that out when we shopped for a tandem.
Plus many shops make more money off of selling comfort and low end mtb bikes to recreational riders. That's what I've read in several other similar posts.
The big downside to bikesdirect is that you unless you live near a Spectrum shop (is that right?), you can't test ride. Distributing through the average LBS seems like a great idea for their business.