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Discounts at bicycle stores

Old 05-05-17, 02:15 AM
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ShravanD
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Discounts at bicycle stores

Hello. Planning to buy a new TT Bike and am looking to spend about 5-6k. What kind of discounts can I expect from stores like R&A cycles, Brooklyn?
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Old 05-05-17, 07:04 AM
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None. The markup on a bike is not very big. Bike shops make more profit (still very small though) on accessories and service.
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Old 05-05-17, 07:38 AM
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You should expect none. You should hope for a small discount on future purchases for the next few months.
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Old 05-05-17, 08:06 AM
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Is it the latest wonder model they are ordering for you? If so, none.

Is it NOS that is a model year or two old that they want to unload? If so, you may run into a deep discount, especially on a high end bike.

All depends on the particular bike and how badly they want to move it. My fiancee bought a road bike this spring for half off the retail price, because it was a 2015 model and no one wanted it (despite the only real difference between it and the 2017 being color).
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Old 05-05-17, 09:36 AM
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I think going into a store expecting to get discounts on a top of the line bike is a terrible attitude.

"I'm buying something expensive, give me discounts."
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Old 05-05-17, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by corrado33 View Post
I think going into a store expecting to get discounts on a top of the line bike is a terrible attitude.

"I'm buying something expensive, give me discounts."
People do that for cars. They do so too for houses, although to be fair the houses aren't in stores.
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Old 05-05-17, 09:52 AM
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"Hey, if I buy this package of Oreos can you hook me up with a half-gallon of milk?"

Sounds dumb, but ppl expect a discount at the LBS...
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Old 05-05-17, 10:14 AM
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I was happy when I bought a bike and they threw in a water bottle.
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Old 05-05-17, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by supton View Post
People do that for cars. They do so too for houses, although to be fair the houses aren't in stores.
100% right!

There is nothing wrong with Haggling, or negotiating. You just have to do your homework and figure out what the bike (or object) that you want normally sells for. Then negotiate the price that you are comfortable paying.

Watch any episode of American Pickers and see those two guys in action.
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Old 05-05-17, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by corrado33 View Post
I think going into a store expecting to get discounts on a top of the line bike is a terrible attitude.

"I'm buying something expensive, give me discounts."
Got that all the time at Office Max with computers. People didn't realize that our average margin was about 2% on those, and generally if they were on sale, we lost money (well, the manufacturer lost money, as they footed the bill for below cost sales). It is why they push accessory sales so hard, there could easily have been a 75% margin on that backpack, and generally well north of 100% on cables.

That said, at small businesses dealing with high end purchases, I never fault anyone for at least trying to bargain. Store may not bite, as is their right, but you never know how badly they want something gone. Got my $70 Jandd low rider rack for $30, just by saying I'd have to think about the discounted $50 price it already had on it.
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Old 05-05-17, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
100% right!

There is nothing wrong with Haggling, or negotiating. You just have to do your homework and figure out what the bike (or object) that you want normally sells for. Then negotiate the price that you are comfortable paying.

Watch any episode of American Pickers and see those two guys in action.
Used vs. new. (In reference to american pickers.) Not to mention that a bike is a leisure item, where are cars (and houses) are necessities for most people, and the price varies quite a bit from place to place (for cars.)

For bikes, the prices are relatively constant (+-$25-$50). Is saving $25 really worth it when you're going to alienate yourself from the bike shop?

Pay full price on the bike, get good service in return. Last time I bought a new bike I got free water bottles, a couple free tune ups (sometimes with parts thrown in.) and a free shop t-shirt.

I bet if I haggled with them I wouldn't have gotten those things.
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Old 05-05-17, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by corrado33 View Post
Not to mention that a bike is a leisure item, where are cars (and houses) are necessities for most people, and the price varies quite a bit from place to place (for cars.)
Why would that make them any more worthy of being haggled over? All cars have a sticker price, just like bikes. All cars have an invoice cost, just like bikes. What they are sold for is a price that the retailer and the consumer agree on, which is exactly how bikes should be handled as well.

For bikes, the prices are relatively constant (+-$25-$50). Is saving $25 really worth it when you're going to alienate yourself from the bike shop?
I'd argue if a shop is going to alienate me over $25 worth of haggling, it is probably not a shop I want (or will find value in) a long term relationship with.

Pay full price on the bike, get good service in return. Last time I bought a new bike I got free water bottles, a couple free tune ups (sometimes with parts thrown in.) and a free shop t-shirt.

I bet if I haggled with them I wouldn't have gotten those things.
So you got stuff that probably cost them a grand total of $10, was probably plastered in their logos advertising for them, and a couple free tuneups that cost them pretty much nothing to do? I'd argue the value of that is lesser than what I could have gotten in discounts from a shop willing to haggle. I could also argue that most people who just walk in and pay asking price don't get any of that.

I'm not saying one should badger if it is clear they aren't moving on price, or expect deep discounts, but I'll never see myself in the position where I'd just pay asking price without asking. If nothing else, maybe it nets you something like what you got, that wouldn't have otherwise been included but was tossed in to make the sale.
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Old 05-05-17, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by corrado33 View Post

Pay full price on the bike, get good service in return. Last time I bought a new bike I got free water bottles, a couple free tune ups (sometimes with parts thrown in.) and a free shop t-shirt.

I bet if I haggled with them I wouldn't have gotten those things.
If paying full price works for you, by all means please do so.

I love people who pay full price, they allow LBS to make a profit and still negotiate with me over price.

My last two bike purchases have not been from an LBS.

I pay a shop that specializes in repairs to do repairs (when needed) on my bikes. They do a superlative job and I am OK paying their prices.

I don't need "free" water bottles.

A shop would have to pay me to wear a shop t-shirt advertising their business.

But if your bike-purchase model works for you, and you are happy with it, by all means stick to it.

For the rest of us, haggling or negotiating over prices, remains a viable alternative.

Have a great day and ride safely!
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Old 05-05-17, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Why would that make them any more worthy of being haggled over? All cars have a sticker price, just like bikes. All cars have an invoice cost, just like bikes. What they are sold for is a price that the retailer and the consumer agree on, which is exactly how bikes should be handled as well.



I'd argue if a shop is going to alienate me over $25 worth of haggling, it is probably not a shop I want (or will find value in) a long term relationship with.



So you got stuff that probably cost them a grand total of $10, was probably plastered in their logos advertising for them, and a couple free tuneups that cost them pretty much nothing to do? I'd argue the value of that is lesser than what I could have gotten in discounts from a shop willing to haggle. I could also argue that most people who just walk in and pay asking price don't get any of that.

I'm not saying one should badger if it is clear they aren't moving on price, or expect deep discounts, but I'll never see myself in the position where I'd just pay asking price without asking. If nothing else, maybe it nets you something like what you got, that wouldn't have otherwise been included but was tossed in to make the sale.
You are correct on every single point, especially not wanting to do business with an LBS that would get "alienated" over $25. Probably not the kind of dealer I'd want to do business with in the first place.

BTW, I once had a Schwinn LeTour. Great bike, I wish I still had it.
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Old 05-05-17, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
BTW, I once had a Schwinn LeTour. Great bike, I wish I still had it.
Ironically, the one bike I've bought in which I was forced to pay full asking price. Salvation Army was not going down any further on that $27.99 pricetag
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Old 05-05-17, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Ironically, the one bike I've bought in which I was forced to pay full asking price. Salvation Army was not going down any further on that $27.99 pricetag
That's my bike! I donated my LeTour to the Salvation Army. I will pay you $28.00 for it.
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Old 05-05-17, 12:03 PM
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There are known arenas where price negotiating is acceptable and known arenas where price negotiating would be laughed at.

With all but the rarest of exceptions...
- Car dealerships are set up for price negotiating.
- Walmart is not set up for price negotiating.
- House buying is set up for price negotiating.
- Gasoline purchases are not set up for price negotiating.

Everyone knows this going in.


Used goods should never be compared to new retail goods when discussing negotiating practices. It is absurd to claim since I negotiate the price of an old lantern I bought from a farmer, I should negotiate the price of my new running shoes.


I am not sure why some view a bike shop as equal to a used antiques barn. Its a retail establishment. I pay the listed price for a can of beans at the grocery store, I pay the listed price for a shirt at the mall, and I pay the listed price for items at the bike shops I frequent.

I dont buy a ton from the bike shops as I like to source gear from various locations online and also do my own maintenance, so maybe I dont have my hand out at the bike shops because I dont feel like I deserve the discount? Not sure what the mentality is.

Negotiating prices on products with a slim margin and large carrying costs?...rough. While the shops I frequent seem to be on solid financial footing, they are hardly swimming in the coin.
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Old 05-05-17, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
That's my bike! I donated my LeTour to the Salvation Army. I will pay you $28.00 for it.
Sorry! Even though it is likely the bottom end of the bikes I own, it'd be the last to be sold. Fits me perfectly, if I were ever to have a high end bike custom made, it would be the starting point for its geometry!

Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
There are known arenas where price negotiating is acceptable and known arenas where price negotiating would be laughed at.
....
I am not sure why some view a bike shop as equal to a used antiques barn. Its a retail establishment. I pay the listed price for a can of beans at the grocery store, I pay the listed price for a shirt at the mall, and I pay the listed price for items at the bike shops I frequent.
I'm not sure why some want to treat it as a grocery store, either. I don't make too many four digit, once every few years purchases at a grocery store, I toss the can of tuna in the cart and pay the asking price in the same way I pay the asking price for a water bottle or tube at the LBS. If the LBS doesn't want to sell it at a price that I want to pay, that is more than fine. They keep the bike, I walk away without the bike. Sometimes, it happens that they want to get rid of the bike bad enough they'll sell at a price I'm willing to pay, even if below the price on the sticker, and both of us leave happy.

Or, to look at it another way: if I can get a comparable bike elsewhere cheaper, why is it bad I give them the chance to come down on their price and get the sale? Retail shops price match all the time, after all.
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Old 05-05-17, 12:29 PM
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I have never seen a store that sells bicycles (at least a reputable one) offer any discount based on price spent. I see them by default install the accessories you buy on the bike like a bell, cargo rack, kickstand etc. when you purchase them at the same time. Many bike shops will toss in a customized fitting as well. But discounts I have noticed are based on time of year so fall or spring. Same kind of idea when buying laptops you buy when there is a high demand to sell and the shop does not want the competitor to make all the money.
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Old 05-05-17, 12:32 PM
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@mstateglfr,

Jefnvk has it right. Buying a can of tuna, a water bottle or a few gallons of gas is NOT the equivalent of buying a bike.

I don't understand the reverence that some here place on the LBS and their price structure for bikes. But if that works for you, please carry on.

BTW, the skill set required to negotiate a good price on an antique (or any other used item) or a new bike are identical.

Some people are not comfortable negotiating, and that's OK.

I am at ease negotiating and that's OK too.

Have a great day and ride safely!
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Old 05-05-17, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Got that all the time at Office Max with computers. People didn't realize that our average margin was about 2% on those, and generally if they were on sale, we lost money (well, the manufacturer lost money, as they footed the bill for below cost sales).
I've asked for discounts before, and I'm not shy about it if I think there's a good reason to. But I wouldn't even bother at a place like Office Max. Being a large corporate chain, they'll have strict policies, and the cashier probably doesn't have authority to lower prices just because I want that.
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Old 05-05-17, 12:39 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Or, to look at it another way: if I can get a comparable bike elsewhere cheaper, why is it bad I give them the chance to come down on their price and get the sale? Retail shops price match all the time, after all.
Pricematch? Absolutely. Makes sense.
...but that is separate from haggling in my eyes.
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Old 05-05-17, 12:42 PM
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Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
@mstateglfr,

Jefnvk has it right. Buying a can of tuna, a water bottle or a few gallons of gas is NOT the equivalent of buying a bike.

I don't understand the reverence that some here place on the LBS and their price structure for bikes. But if that works for you, please carry on.

BTW, the skill set required to negotiate a good price on an antique (or any other used item) or a new bike are identical.

Some people are not comfortable negotiating, and that's OK.

I am at ease negotiating and that's OK too.

Have a great day and ride safely!
Why is a bike any different from a can of tuna or gallons of gas? Why do you feel it's ok to haggle a bike shop (who probably already has enough trouble getting by) out of a few dollars?

Perhaps some of us think further than the thickness of our wallet and LIKE having the local bike stores around.

If you prefer to haggle so much, why not just buy the bike online and cut the LBS out altogether? You'd most definitely get a cheaper price.

We have people like you come into our COOP all of the time.

Everyone hates those people. Always looking for a handout. You aren't making friends doing what you're doing. Trust me. Just ask anybody in retail. But no, we're happy that you have a few more dollars in your wallet.

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Old 05-05-17, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
@mstateglfr,

Jefnvk has it right. Buying a can of tuna, a water bottle or a few gallons of gas is NOT the equivalent of buying a bike.

I don't understand the reverence that some here place on the LBS and their price structure for bikes. But if that works for you, please carry on.

BTW, the skill set required to negotiate a good price on an antique (or any other used item) or a new bike are identical.

Some people are not comfortable negotiating, and that's OK.

I am at ease negotiating and that's OK too.
It isnt about the skill set for negotiating. A used lamp has a different set of parameters used to establish a value when compared to an item at retail. Its a long set of parameters too.

As for not being comfortable negotiating, i have to do it for my job a dozen times a day. My entire job is basically finding middle ground to make money and that middle ground is ever changing.
It isnt about comfort for some. If i buy from retail, I dont expect discount. If I want discounts, I will seek them out- Raleigh corporate, Dback corporate, Nashbar, BikesDirect, etc etc.




Curious- where is the pricepoint where you(and others) no longer negotiate and why is that the point? You mention a bike isnt like a gallon of gas or can of tuna and I would assume its because of the initial out of pocket expense. Ok then, so what is the limit where you dont negotiate? Anything under $400? Under $100? Anything under $10? Or do you negotiate everything regardless of price?
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Old 05-05-17, 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
I pay the listed price for a can of beans at the grocery store,
Which makes a lot less sense than paying list for a new bike; grocery markups are huge.

Even lightly used bikes, OTOH, may have a lot more haggling room, depending on any parts cost for work done to prep it for resale. The seller may be charging for prep labor, which he then could choose to discount without actually losing money, assuming he does his prep work when he's not backed up on paying repairs.
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