Towards the end of last year, we set out with a very special mission: to find out what women want (from their bike shop).
Cycling has a history of being a male dominated sport, but we know that more and more women are getting on their bikes, so we wanted to make sure that we’re meeting their needs.
There are plenty of women in our offices, but we carried out some surveys and focus groups to make sure we got the right answers for our wide range of customers across the country.
What we found was simple – the high majority asked us for two things:
1) Women’s only events with advice and information
2) Women’s only FixIt! maintenance classes
You asked – and we provided… One for the Girls
We’ve now held three series’ of women’s only events, attracting 11k sign ups. These in-store events have featured talks and advice from our colleagues, from suppliers, and from expert coaches.
We’ve provided food, drinks, goody bags and discounts to make sure that everyone has a really fantastic “girls night out” experience (and we don’t mean that belittlingly, we know the guys like a good “boys night out”, too!).
Feedback from the events so far has been great, but our last set of ‘One for the Girls’ nights was our best yet, with a 10-store nationwide tour, featuring 3-4 experts at every date, each of whom offered a smaller scale Q+A session so that all questions get answered.
We’ve had some fantastic comments following the evening, but our favourite came from Sophie,who said: “The great speakers had a wide range of knowledge, it was nice to meet other cyclists – there was a strong turnout, all of different ages/cycling abilities. It was both reassuring and inspiring! The speakers were obviously experts in their field – all my questions were answered well.”
Women’s Only FixIt! classes
Next up, we set about providing women’s only FixIt! classes. Of the women we surveyed, a third told us the single best thing we could do for them was to hold FixIt! classes just for women, so we decided that made it a pretty big priority.
One in every four FixIt! sessions in all stores will now be for women only.
We’ve been holding one-hour long maintenance classes in all our stores for years, and the format will remain exactly the same.
The class will set you back £15, but you’ll leave with a goody bag containing a manual, and over £15 worth of maintenance kit.
Sessions include a bike component guide, information on carrying out a pre-ride safety check, how to change an inner tube, cleaning and re-lubing a drivechain, and break and gear adjustment. In addition, there will be plenty of time to ask any specific questions you have.
More women’s clothing and bikes
Of course, we’re a retailer – so to be a good option for women, we need to stock the clothing, bikes and accessories they want. We’ve been working hard to improve our offering, with more women’s specific bikes and a greater choice of clothing. We hope you enjoy it!
If you’ve got any ideas about how we could better cater for female cyclists, let us know in the comments box below..