James Pickering, managing director of Cycleguard, shares the results of a recent survey carried out by Cycleguard and explains why this is significant for cycle retailers and others in the industry...

CHAIN REACTION: Safety sells

Good news for all cycle retailers and stores. Cycleguard’s recent ‘cyclist safety’ research produced some positive results for the industry, with opportunities for cycle dealers in particular. Here’s a snapshot of the results and what they could mean for your business:

Cyclists motivated by fitness
Typically in a New Year, people are making resolutions, and for most of us that includes a healthy diet and fitness. This is reflected in the results, which showed that 40 per cent of leisure cyclists have been motivated to start cycling to work as a way of keeping fit.

Other commuters have been motivated by saving money (29 per cent), cycling being more convenient than public transport (11 per cent) and avoiding traffic (ten per cent).

All of these reasons have already raised cycling levels by 83 per cent compared to 2000 (Source: www.london.gov.uk).

More reflective clothing is needed
As more and more cyclists take to the road there are safety precautions to consider, in particular their visibility in the winter season of dark nights. Cycleguard’s research has revealed that more than a third (35 per cent) of cycling commuters feel unsafe on the roads.

Cyclists in London feel the least at ease on the roads, with 44 per cent claiming to feel unsafe. Meanwhile, Bristolians feel the safest, with 75 per cent feeling either safe or very safe on the roads.

Nearly 40 per cent still cycle without a helmet, over half do not use reflective clothing, and 30 per cent are not equipped with lights, providing a strong indication that road-safety messages still have some way to go.
This provides scope for better advertising of safety products, and with the right message, a lot more reflective clothing, helmets and lights can be sold too. Cross-promotions with bike sales may be one tactic to drive sales of safety accessories.

Despite the dangers on the roads, only 21 per cent have personal accident insurance, while a mere 13 per cent have public liability insurance.

Standard home contents insurance policies may limit the amount of cover provided for bikes taken outside of the home and with a bike being stolen every 65 seconds (according to research by Halifax) it is important that customers ensure they are adequately covered.

Cycleguard can provide website banners and leaflets to display on your counter; there’s no need to advise the customer or even hand them out. Just display them on your website, in your catalogue or in your shop and receive a commission when a referred customer (who enters a unique code) buys an insurance policy. Cycleguard currently has over 900 cycle stores, across the UK, who benefit from this partnership and the recommendation of the ACT. For more information please email development manager Chris Vinton at chris.vinton@jltonline.co.uk or call him on 02476 851086.

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