Why online retail cannot match brick & mortar retail

To start with, I will just say I saved a £100 straight away compared to the best online discount deal. By straight away I mean, no bargaining, no comparing and none of that nonsense. I just walk into this store ask for the bike ( that I had checked online & also tried out at a different store and had a tag price of £999.99 at both the places and that was after discounts & all offers). The guy in around his 50’s take me to this rack & I see my bike hanging in there & the first thing that catches my eye is £899.99 price tag. Now if you go buying a bike all you get is the bike, I mean just the bike, they don’t give you the safety lights, the bike stand, the bottle holders, a puncture repair kit, tire levers, or an emergency tool kit nor the pedals… can you believe it?? You buy a £1000 (around ₹ 85000) bike and they don’t give you the pedals… Ok, now that they are not giving it, no point crying foul, so the point is, I also need a pair of pedals. I pick all this stuff up and it adds up to another £104 to the cost of the bike. 😦

Now to give my friends a little idea of how I shop, I once went bargaining with a rickshaw puller on the ride cost of ₹20 (£.23) and saved ₹4(£0.05) on it. I don’t know why I do it, but I just cannot do without a bargain & I do no discriminate not if the person is a street vendor or if the place is Louis Philippe Show Room. There was this one time, I was at a 3 star hotel and before ordering I asked the waiter if there was any offer/discount going on and with one sarcastic smile and a dirty look from the waiter and then on, none of the 4 friends I was with that day has pestered me for a treat.. :D.

Now coming back to the bike, I ask him to add up the kit and quote the final price so that I could get work my magic & get to bargaining..  😀 . He adds up the costs working up his calculator looks up to me & hands up the quote
Gaint Defy 1  (999.99)                           899.99
Lights Set  (25.99)                                     15.99
Pedals (FOC)                                                 11.99
1 Religh lock                                                 14.99
2 Bottle cages (FOC)                                  18.98
2 Bottles (FOC)                                              5.99
Bum bag(FOC)                                               4.99
Multi tool set (FOC)                                     3.99
Triple tyre lever (FOC)                               1.99
Puncture repair kit (FOC)                         3.99
Bag reflectors and rain cover (FOC)   22.99

Total  : £ 930.97

I see the quote and all my bargaining nerves are already having an orgasm, at this point (That’s beacuse, FOC means Free of Cost)  with the intense satisfaction,  now a little suspicion creeps up into my head. I am starting to think if this guy here is trying to sell me substandard parts or doing some other mischief, because when things get too good to be true, I always have believed that they probably are not. I break the conversation promising him to return the next day and seal the deal & go online check the components first and reconfirm the Tech Spec & then compare the cost of all the accessories he’s give me free just to find to my disappointment that they were true & the shop was genuine & so were the parts.

Just put things in perspective, almost a month back I had ordered a puncture repair kit on Amazon, it was a complete kit and was cheapest at £ 0.99 just to realize after payment that they had added £4.22 to shipping. It was smartly hidden somewhere until payment and pops up right after payment 😦 .


The next day I walk into the store, no bargaining, the bike is ready with all the fittings and sized up for me, I make the payment, do a couple of test rides fine tune the settings, a couple of pictures and am off. Such a amazing experience. All I am trying to say is, no matter how they offer you free returns, free pick up & deliveries and all that sort of online experience, none of it can match going out to the shop and talking to some real experts and the best of all the great discounts. The people trying to sell you things on-line are trying to rip every penny off you, more often than a brick & mortar retail can get away with. & guys just to keep you posted I upgraded my bike to a Giant Defy 1.


This store & the amazing people Steve Jackson & Tony can be reached at http://www.kelvincycles.co.uk/ and if you are nice enough, Steve will let you shoot a couple of snaps in his studio..  😉  Professional Studio with the lights & stuff..


2 thoughts on “Why online retail cannot match brick & mortar retail

  1. Loved their website! Simple and Subtle. Gives me a clear picture of your buying experience.
    I am looking forward for your ‘experiments with you GIANT’!!

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