Defiance Update, May 22:
As you’ve probably heard, bike shops everywhere are experiencing a tidal wave of business, and not necessarily in a healthy or sustainable way. We are getting back to back phone calls pretty much the whole day, and literally hundreds of emails every week. Just taking the time to respond to this level of communication takes up a huge portion of our available shop time. We are selling bikes faster than we can build them, but this means added time in the process of talking through things with customers and often explaining that if you aren’t ready to buy a bike without being able to ride it first, it will likely be gone before we have a chance to build it for the floor. Chris is a father of a school-age child and every other week he is home trying to balance managing home-school and parental focus with emails and customer callbacks. Adriel has been (over)working constantly but also often so busy with order pickups and phone calls that he is even further backed up on service time. We are a 2 person shop and cannot simply hire and train more people, nor is that a part of our business plan. We’re doing our best to manage all of it and stay sane, and just need you to understand the level of demand right now is causing more harm than good in many ways. We are exploring many options for operation moving forward in this new era.
BICYCLE SERVICE AND REPAIR: Until further notice we are ONLY able to take in jobs on bicycles purchased from Defiance. We make that commitment to customers who purchase their bicycles here and will hold to it, but unfortunately right now that means we cannot keep a reasonable turnaround or manage scheduling work on other bikes (this includes “quick” things like flats and minor adjustments) when there are so many factors outside of our control causing additional difficulties (suppliers being out of stock for many normal items, shipping delays at the warehouse/shipper/check-in on our end, etc). We hope you understand that this is a decision of necessity, not something we are doing because we want to.
BICYCLE SALES: Much of the inventory on the sales floor sold right away when this situation was unfolding, and now we are left with little to show and a lot of boxed bikes selling before they ever hit the floor. We’re trying to build up showroom bikes which we will keep until there are no more available to re-order, but this means an additional delay in getting you a bike after you’ve paid for it. Pretty much anything under $1000 is gone for the season, we do not know when there will be more available in that price range as it is a supplier issue that is out of our control. We’re snapping up as many options as we can with limited warehouse stock and some big gaps in what we’d normally offer. For sales appointments we are doing as much of the “browsing” process as possible over the phone and through email, and if we have a good option available we can have you come in to check it out. Without wanting to pressure you, please know that if you have your eye on a specific bike it is a good idea to pay for it up front so you actually get it, many people are ready to buy before riding and we cannot hold bikes until they hit the floor. Emailing SHOP@DEFIANCEBICYCLES.COM is the best way to begin this process and PLEASE include a phone number so that we can call you back to discuss options. It should go without saying at this point, but we are wearing face masks and you need to as well, if you are going to be a grump about this or complain about social distancing policies we are not the shop for you.
ONLINE SALES: We will be likely closing down the web store as it has not worked out to be as effective or simple to manage as the contractor we chose implied that it would be. We do not have a firm date on this and its disappointing losing this option, but it has been fraught with errors and unexpected issues that we were not made aware of before offering it. We’re working on alternatives however of course all of this takes additional time and mental bandwidth that we simply don’t have available right now. Stay tuned and feel free to keep using the service while it is available!
In closing - we are keeping a positive attitude and outlook for the future, and hope this message is received with that tone as it is a lot of “no no no” information. This is just the reality of the situation and we want to be as transparent as possible. We love our jobs and have been so happy to be able to keep so many people riding, and we will emerge from this a stronger and more efficient bike shop. Change is inevitable, adaptation is a must, and there is no “going back” only moving forward.
And as always, THANK YOU FOR CHOOSING DEFIANCE.
Defiance Update, May 22: