How to use innovative sales promotions to sell bikes despite supply chain uncertainty

Keeping up with the current unprecedented demand for bikes, brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, is an increasing challenge facing many cycling manufacturers. When your supply chain is uncertain, maintaining customer loyalty and avoiding sales lost to a competitor requires an innovative marketing approach. As industry experts in consumer campaigns, rewards and loyalty, Opia shares the disruptive promotional strategies that can help overcome these new challenges and ensure the interest in your bike brand converts to sales.

The challenge of demand outstripping supply

As the world continues to battle with a global pandemic, social distancing measures and concerns over using public transport, combined with reaching the peak of the summer season, have led to record-breaking bike sales for many brands. With this spike in sales, current demand is outweighing supplies, and supply chain disruption is causing uncertainty over when bikes can be delivered. Trek has sold out of the 2020 models much earlier than expected1. Meanwhile, Moore Large, one of the UK’s largest suppliers of bicycles, is delivering up to 1,000 every day2. Many customers have been left disappointed, unable to purchase the make or model desired or facing a lengthy wait to receive their bike delivery. The dilemma for cycling manufacturers during this bike boom is how to convert customer interest to sales when the product they are seeking is not currently available.

Experienced in retaining customer loyalty, Opia is confident that, even with the extraordinary challenges faced, by adopting certain sales promotions, your next potential buyer will not go elsewhere.

For a more in-depth exploration on how to achieve long-term growth in bike sales by adapting your promotional strategies, click on this link to access our whitepaper.

Retaining customer interest by encouraging higher-value purchases

If a customer is facing a long waiting time for their potential bike purchase, or the lower-value models have sold out, there needs to be encouragement in purchasing a higher-value model. This incentive must be immediately visible to avoid lost interest and gravitation towards a competitor. Below are proven methods that will achieve this goal:

Cashback rewards

Offering a cashback reward for buying a bike can be a compelling reason for purchase and is a more financially efficient strategy than traditional discounting. With only the most engaged customers claiming their cashback reward, sometimes around 50%, your promotional costs are cut in half! To remove the financial risk of over-redemption, check that you are covered by specialist insurance when running a cashback campaign. To find out more on effective strategies for cashback rewards, download our whitepaper, which focuses on the current challenges facing bike manufacturers.

Basket boost campaigns

Offering customers cashback when they have purchased your bike and spent a specified amount on a store’s accessories, not only increases the chance of purchase from the customer but also builds favourable partnerships with your retailers. Promoting their products alongside your bikes will encourage them to prioritise your models over the competitors.

Provide financial reassurance in unprecedented times

During periods of uncertainty, customers may be reluctant to invest in high-value products, therefore look at ways to reassure your customers should they experience financial difficulty. This assurance could be through offering payment via smaller installments or with a payment ‘holiday’ if and when needed. Another example is a redundancy refund policy, such as our job safe scheme, where customers are promised a 50% refund on their purchase should they be made redundant in the following 12 months. By providing financial reassurance, there is more confidence to invest in higher-value goods, thus giving the buyer more options should their preferred lower-value model be unavailable.

Our experience working with headline brands in durable consumer goods, such as Wahoo Fitness, Microsoft and Samsung, has shown these methods of high impact promotions are a cost-effective way to drive your top and bottom line. By also reinforcing their financial predictability with specialist promotional insurance, your brand’s ongoing profitability and long-term growth will be supported.

To find out more about how Opia can assist with your bike sales challenges, please get in touch with our team, and we’d be pleased to discuss the options available.

1 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-53023552

2 https://cyclingindustry.news/covid-19-the-story-of-the-bike-boom-so-far/