ESPOKES: Selling bikes that allow you to ride the way you want to ride
So, what is your commute like? One of the primary pitches for e-bike sales is using your e-bike as an easy and fun option rather than using your car to get to work. While David Rasmussen logs plenty of e-bike miles, he doesn’t make his commute between his two e-bike shops on two wheels. Since that commute is a tick under 300 miles, opting for even the most powerful e-bike possible wouldn’t allow too much time with the customers, or anything else!
You can find one eSpokes shop in South Jordan, Utah, considered part of the greater Salt Lake City Utah area. That makes perfect sense, since the greatest industry share and population in Utah surround SLC. On the other hand, SLC is covered with snow a good part of the winter, and sales expectedly slump severely in the snow months. Roughly 300 miles south in St. George, Utah, the weather is switched and is home to the second eSpokes shop. Winter riding is amazing there, but only the serious are out riding in the dry-but-nevertheless-baking summers.
Rasmussen lives in St. George, and he plans to continue to make his home there, but this summer the emphasis will switch to the South Jordan store, and he will continue his “commute.” The St. George store will close during the summer months, then reopen in the winter as a satellite store for the balmy fall, winter and spring months.
Like many of the successful shops we have visited, eSpokes sticks to quality, established brands, including Gazelle, Easy Motion, Felt, Focus, Haibike, Kalkhoff, Pedego and Xtracycle. Both eSpokes stores sell the same brands. The company has been in the e-bike business since 2012, and it describes itself as the “largest and most experienced electric bike dealer in Utah.” At the time the company started, eSpokes was the only e-bike dealer between Denver, Colorado, and Los Angeles, California.
HOW IT STARTED
Rasmussen’s interest in e-bike began when his father, who was preparing to bring his own brand of electric recumbent bikes to market, invited David to the Interbike trade show in 2011 Once there David fell in love with e-bikes. Not only did he test ride every model he could, but he also began to build a business plan in his mind.
Once he got his stores opened, he found that during the appropriate sales seasons, sit-up and especially step-through city bikes sold the best, with e-assist mountain bikes gaining in popularity.
Although both of the eSpokes locations are within feet of bike-path systems, eSpokes has a few rentals at the St. George location only. A key benefit to the South Jordan location is in the master-planned community of Daybreak, and one of the key planners was a cyclist. As such, there is a lot of cycling infrastructure in the Daybreak area. The bike path near the shop (with connections) has close to 30 miles of bike paths that are separated from city traffic.
In St. George there are even better choices for bike paths, and eventually the path near the shop will connect with the Zion National Park, which is over 40 miles away! The best of the local rides are the Snow Canyon Loop and the Virgin River Trail. Utah recently passed legislation similar to California’s, which removes legal, 20-mph, pedal-assist e-bikes from the “motorized vehicle” category. Since that legislation change, e-bikes are legal on all designated bike paths.
At each eSpokes shop you will find a full-featured service department with all the latest equipment. Every eSpokes bike sale includes one year of free labor on repairs, and that includes flat tires and tune-ups. If you can’t easily get your bike to the shop, eSpokes will repair the bike at your home or, if needed, transport it to the shop for you. Talk about customer service! www.espokes.com