When I first laid eyes on a Roll Bicycle several months ago, I could tell I was looking at something out of the ordinary. Clean design, simple lines, sensible set-up, gorgeous colors, minimal branding. Roll bikes are not about being louder, newer, edgier, trendier. They are all about you.
This does not mean that Roll Bicycles does not use the latest in component technology, but they use it less for it's own sake, or for the sake of outshouting the competition, and more to enhance the riding experience the end user prefers. Typically, to set up a custom bike, you’d have to spend several thousand dollars. Roll is not fully custom, but at a moderate price of $750, they nicely bridge the gap between a typical stock bike, and a full custom set-up.
Allow me to elaborate. For decades, the typical bicycle shopping experience looked the same. You walked into a bike shop, surveyed their in-stock offerings, and based on your budget, the results of your test-ride, and recommendations of the store personnel, you made your purchase from he selection they have on the floor. In some cases, if your size or preferred color was not in stock, the shop would order the bike for you from the vendor.
Then came the fun part. After your initial test-ride, or after having the bike for a few weeks, you’d decide you’d like to change certain things. Perhaps the handlebars were too low, too wide, or you wanted a different gearing range, or thinner (or fatter) tires, etc, etc. Your friendly neighborhood bike shop would work with you to swap out parts (sometimes at full retail, sometimes at a reduced cost) to make needed modifications.
Roll changes all that. As a retailer, we no longer have to guess which Roll bicycle the next customer is going to want. We stock enough to represent the sizes, available colors and most configurations. The rest is done by consultation, taking some key measurements, and ordering a bike in the right size, the color of your choice, with components appropriate to your style of riding, and scaled to fit your physique. No, you don’t get your bike the same day, but within 3-5 days you take delivery of a brand new bike made to your specifications, and assembled by us just for you.
We’re excited about our partnership with Roll, and this new, consultation-based selling model, which eliminates much of the stabbing in the dark for us. We’ve been selling bicycles for a long time, and we have found that, even with bike companies organized along a more traditional selling model, this collaborative approach makes for a better, more fulfilling experience for both us and the customers, and results in a more satisfying experience with the bike in the real world. Roll just makes that process easier.
We brought in the initial shipment of Roll floor model samples. Please stop in, take a look at them and let us know what you think!