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The state of bike shopping and dealers [in]actions

Discussion in 'Businesses and Service Providers' started by Mouth, Jan 6, 2006.

  1. Note: A bit long, but I have a story to tell :cool:

    For those that came in late, my bike was written-off in early December and we got a great xmas present - insurance cheque :)

    In need of a new bike, during the xmas-new year break i was hitting all the classifed websites, manufacturers websites, and dealers web pages. Looking, thinking, deciding, wondering, price comparisons, etc - jeez it's hard to make up your mind on a replacement bike :)

    The day after boxing day I was very interested in a particular new bike, and based on some business ad's in the online classifieds, thought it was within our budget. So, I sent off just over 10 emails to all the local (Melb) marque dealers, and a couple of the larger Sydney one's (I was prepared to fly-up and ride back if that had what colour I wanted and the right price). My email stated clearly that I was interested in a new bike of model xxx and did they have any in stock, if so what colour(s), and what price could I reasonably expect to be their best offerring. This would save me from ringing/visiting every dealer in search of what I wanted, and go someway towards narrowing down who would have the best price, or at least be willing to talk best price.

    Sure it was the xmas/new year period and the shops were closed on the public holidays, so I left it a few working days (5 to be exact) until mid this week. Less than half of the dealers even bothered responding to my emails - less than half! Of those, only one said anything about price (other than the RRP/sticker), only one responded with what colour they had in stock (they others just ignored the query), and one even lied to me about having the model of bike in stock (presumably just to get me in the store?)

    What is it with these dealers? Why splash their contact email addresses (eg. sales@ and info@ etc.) all over their websites if they're not even bothered to either respond, or respond fully?

    To top it off, yesterday I visited 3 of the Melb dealers for this marquee (and in doing so, ruled-out by emailed/initial interest bike for availability and financial reasons). In each I made it clear that I was ready to buy, interested in talking price, had a trade-in with me, and liked 2 particular models. One of these dealers was newly advertising (just this week) that they had in-stock the last '05 model of the bike I initially liked (and sent emails about) .. get there and they don't have it :( Asked about the other bike we are interested in, and we talk real price and they take their time to really review and accurately/fairly price the trade-in. Kudo's to MotoYamaha in Ferntree Gully - well worth a visit for your next bike shopping.

    On to the next dealer, and same deal .. like two bikes, ready to buy, trade-in valuation ... sales guy gives me a brochure with RRP/sticker price, tells me to come back on Sat for test-rides, glances at the trade-in (but spends more time talking about his riding time in the Northern territory) and tells me he'll speak to the 'boss' and let me know trade-in value when I come back for a test ride. 3 sales people sitting at desks when I get there, only one other person in the bike area, and they aren't interested in talking real price then and there and do test rides .. have to come back Sat? Pffft .. didn't stay there long, and won't be back on Saturday :wink: My advice .. don't bother going to Clipstone Yamaha in Ringwood, they don't seem very intersted in selling bikes at all.

    The final dealer for the day .. and what a huge difference. They have both bikes in stock that we were interested in, and we get almost straight into talking real/best price and trade-in valuations, with obvious discussion between salesguy and the boss? when I say they can do better on the price for one of them. Happy for us to take both (the demo models) for a test ride immediately (which we do) to help/finalise the decision. No huge pressure but obviously, and fairly, eager to close the sale. And that's exactly what we do, leaving a deposit yesterday afternoon with pickup ready today (just about to leave home and go get it in fact :) ). Highly recommend Yamaha City in Melbourne CBD :)

    So why is it some dealers just aren't interested in selling - no email responses, test rides only on Sat with a booking even though not busy, poor interest in nutting/haggling a price, etc?
  2. Jason,
    about time you / we / netrider got the
    email address's to the shop owners , and sent them a link to each thread as they come up and invite them to read it and reply .
    this way they get to see whst there screwed up sales wankers are doing to there bussiness, and maybe even when they realise 2000 members start throwing discounts and services for helping clear the dead wood from there bussiness.
  3. Is it because.... They make bugger-all money on new bike sales and more out of accessories, servicing and second-handers?

    And because they'd get a lot of 'sniffers' without too many folks taking a bite?

    Still, if you're in the business you might as well give people your time and serious attention. Porbably not going to happen if they're not paying enough to get good people.
  4. But its an inline 4 and its under 800cc........
  5. That may be right .. but for the dealers that didn't respond to emails or weren't interested in rides or talking real price .. be buggerred if I'll visit them for accessories, servicing and second-handers, or recommend them for likewise to anyone else.
  6. I know exactly what you mean.

    A few weeks ago I went bike shopping. now I'm no-where near ready to actually buy a bigger bike, but wanted to discuss price & what models can be expected in 06, so I could work out what to save for. Most importantly I wanted to sit on a few bikes & see how they felt.

    First stop: Peter Stevens, Adelaide. They were busyish, but still sales people sitting around at desks. I walk around, look at a few bikes, find a couple I wanted to sit on. For 10 mins no sales people came & said "Can I help you?" I had to walk up to them & say "hello?? I want to have a look at a bike!!" they said "yeah go ahead" and didn't even follow me to talk about the bike I was looking at. Will not be going back there if you paid me.

    Next stop: Yamaha World, Clarence Gardens SA. Sales person was very good & discussed with me what mods you can do etc to the bike I was looking at. even pointed out a second hand one that was in stock & said "you might want to look at this one, it's a bit cheaper & had a ventura rack & micron exhaust". However he didn't really like the fact I wasn't going to buy a bike that day, and tried to sell me a motard on the basis that "it';s learner approved & you can take it home today!" when I was looking at the FZ6N. And he didn't have any info on the 06 models. not bad service, but be prepared to be hassled there.

    Next: Bolton's Kawasaki, Richmond SA: sales guy was awesome, let me not only sit on a Z750, but let me push it around a bit so I could see how I was with the weight. he got me a brochure with the models for 05, but he pointed out what features would be different for 06 and even found out what colours it came in for me (i'm a girl - colour is important). Really friendly sales person without being pushy, and when I said "im not buying for a year" he said "no worries, you have to do research or how are you going to know what to save for?" I highly recommend this store.

    Last stop: Bills Motorcycles, Blair Athol. Always a pleasure to shop there, but they do need more staff!!!!! Highly recommended though.
  7. So did ya get the red one?
  8. From my experience most of the bike dealers in rural areas seem to be extremely good - probably more affected by bad reputation than city dealers. Bought my bike in Horsham found the service to be exceptional, they even phoned me a week after I picked it up just to check everything was okay. Know of others who've bought bikes in Ballarat and Bendigo and none ever had any problems.
  9. well I didn't get any one yet - but yes my next bike must be Red or Black.

    The FZ6N comes in both, the Kwaka comes in Black (& silver but i don't want silver) and if I ever find a Hornet....i'll get it re-painted if I have to!
  10. Not you, silly!
  11. they look better in black I reckon Loz :)
  12. Anything looks good in black!

    I saw a speed triple with trade plates on this morning - perhaps the 06? - in the same golden yellow the 675 is gonna come out in.

  13. Even though I didn't buy the bike (because I'm still on restrictions) I highly recommend the Suzuki dealer in VIC -> Hoppers Crossing.

    I wanted to have a sit down on the '06 GSX-R1000 and the only one they had was on the stage in front of the window...the sales guy moved all of the other bikes that were in the way so I could access it and let me take my time sitting down on the bike.
  14. Out of curiosity, does anyone know the requirements for setting up a dealership these days?

    If you know the rules for a particular marquee, I'd be interested (mainly for curiousity sake).
  15. It's quite interesting isnt it that to most of us the small expamples of custimer service that would entice us o deal with a store on a regular basis seem to be to hard for alot of stores.

    I wonder if maybe it is because in the past motorbike riders have been seen as a minority and as such they feel that as a consumer we do not have many options and will just have to buy from them.

    Having worked in sales and customer service, I cant understand why such a high amount of sales and customer service staff find real customer service so hard!

    Maybe we should look for investors and setup a netrider shop!!!


  16. This is sooo true, I work in Sales & Customer Service, Casually and now full time. I get really annoyed when I provide a high level of service to my cutsomers and Bike/Cage sales people cannot provide the same level of service.

    Quick Story Actually fairly long

    8 Months ago I bought a second hand car from a used car dealer. Everything was fine till I wanted a RACV check done on it, he got a bit snotty from then.
    Anyway I picked the car up the Thursday before good Friday, got the car home and the headlight bracket was broken & seatbelt was dodgy. Ring them up on Tuesday, CLOSED. Go down on Wednesday he accuses me of smashing into someone, he then changes his story and accuses the RACV tester of breaking it. Still no explaination for the seatbelt.

    Get the car serviced the next week and the whole thing is dodgy ( eg just about falling apart). Anyway I got everything fixed and spoke to a mate who is a detective. Go down there the next day with the bill & the Detective. The salesmen was not happy but payed the bill after the Detective had a quite word to him :wink:

    Anyway, long story not really a point to it. But the moral of the story is if u have any trouble with dealers, if you have any Police friends take them with you :grin:
  17. I couldn't agree more! I was helping my sister purchase her first road bike early last year and found them to be absolutely appalling.

    I've never been one to expect or even desire much in the way of service from sales staff but I do expect that when I walk in with cash in hand and and am willing to buy that day that they show a little interest once I make this clear. No such luck! :shock:

    In fact I'd go as far as to say that the sales guy became downright obstructive when I indicated I'd be willing to buy but only after a test ride. His policy was that I could only ride the bike, on the following Saturday, _after_ committing to the purchase and we actually ended up in a rather heated 'debate'.

    It was one of the stranger experiences I've had in some time...
  18. A few years ago, I decided I wanted a new bike and settled on the ZX6. Liked it, rode it and wanted to trade in. Because it was a 'want' and not a 'need', it took me a couple of visits to really make my mind up. So I called the sales guy, arranged to meet on the Sat to finalise the paperwork.

    Turn up on Sat and the previously (verbally) agreed trade in price suddenly isn't possible. By now I was really annoyed, got up and walked out the shop.

    I then went to Jeffrey's in FTG. I told them my tale of woe and ended up buying (that afternoon) a CB600F3 for about a grand more than Peter Steven's wanted for their ZX6. All because the sales guy in Jeffrey's treated me with respect, didn't try to screw me around and spent some time listening.

    In the end I have now bought another 3 bikes from them over a few years and also sent them new business as well as all my servicing and accessories. So good service pays huge dividends if you can supply it.

  19. These guys are paid a commission on each sale, right? It seems bizarre that they're shooting themselves in the hip-pocket.

  20. That was my experience with them too. I thnk a pattern may be emmerging here.