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  1. #1
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    Is it me or does it seem like most Trek dealers are the stingiest!

    I have been shopping for a new sled for a good bit of time and I am very interested in the Remedy. Most of the other dealers I have been to seem to be willing to swap out bars, stems, do a tubeless conversion, throw in pedals, etc. etc. at no cost. Not the two Trek dealers I have been to.

    I don't know if it's margin related or what but man does it leave a bad taste in my mouth and I realize I am not buying a $7,000 bike, but you would think that there is enough margin in a $3,000 bike to throw in a few freebies. Heck one shop wouldn't even give 10% off.

    I am sure it's dealer specific but two out of two have been the same.

  2. #2
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    I am the manager of a Trek dealer and I figured maybe I could shed some light on this subject. Trek has two different prices, an advertised price and an MSRP price. On the website you will find the advertised price as well as on the hangtags that Trek sends us with the bike orders.

    For example on the 2014 Remedy 7 29'' the advertised price is $2839.99 where as the MSRP price is $2699.99. The dealer will usually have the bikes on the floor priced at the advertised and then haggle down towards the MSRP price. Trek however prohibits dealers from going any lower than the MSRP price on current year model bikes. This is why sometimes you see the previous year bikes at such a good deal because they are allowed to sell them for whatever they want too. The MSRP pricing that Trek does is good for both the dealers and the customer as well as the industry as a whole. It helps protect the pricing so you don't get a big bike shop who sells in volume undercutting the small mom and pop store. It also protects the purchase of the customer since they have a pretty cut and dry value of their new bikes and they dont have to worry about going down the road and finding the same bike for hundreds less.

    Usually to close a sale you will find the majority of dealers offer different things. Some will offer a certain amount of free tune ups, or will offer you priority status if you buy a bike from there and need work done. Others will throw in the Trek care package for your bike or they may give you 20% off all accessories that day only.

    The best way to go about your purchase is to find a dealer who wants your business. $3000 is not a cheap bike and for you it may be the biggest purchase you ever make. Make the dealer fight for your business by having them offer discounts on services and accessories and just know that there is a certain price point they cannot break without risking their Trek dealership.

  3. #3
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    One question: Are both of these advertised and MSRP prices tax included?
    2012 Trek Slash 9

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaRaBeeN View Post
    One question: Are both of these advertised and MSRP prices tax included?
    No, because tax varies by State and Country.

  5. #5
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    Look for a 2013 model and you can usually get a great deal. I just bought a 2013 Trek Stache 7. Original price was $1599.99 and i got it for 1299.99! Just a thought. Good luck man.

  6. #6
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    Something to add, if a trek dealer is advertising for a given price, is it possible to negotiate that as an out the door price, tax included?

  7. #7
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    You can negotiate everything. If the Trek dealer doesn't accept your price I am sure someone else will under the condition that your offer is realistic. Unless of course you want a specific bike from a specific dealer.

    Personally all my bikes were "last year models" and were bought with a 20-30% discount that saved me money that I could spend on upgrades etc. However if I have found my dream bike maybe I would have bought it even without a discount.

  8. #8
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    Without knowledge, perception IS reality.

    Welch621's informative post lets riders know that pricing frustrations should target the mfg's NOT the LBS. It's the manufacturer's that dictate terms, pricing to protect profits, and their actions infuriate the consumer - who don't understand the policy. Unfortunately, this hatred is often directed towards the shop.
    [unrelated, but relevant... in 2007 before the cost of US petrol exploded, XOM sold off the last of their corporate-owned stations to avoid direct consumer rage.] Perhaps, district Trek reps should spend one day a month on the LBS floor to observe this feedback?

    IME - an LBS must feel compelled to offer additional services to cinch the deal, and this is a matter of demand, and likability.
    To a point everything is negotiable, yet success varies greatly, and being demanding & doooshy doesn't often work.

    I tend to be infuriated by ********, so when a salesperson starts "steering" me I politely walk away. This happens often at Trek dealers, and I think a result of their corporate training. Yeah, you're bikes may be good, but IMHO your sales tactics certainly blow.
    The best is the one you want to ride most often..

  9. #9
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    I am not sure what exactly happens in USA but where I live (Greece) maybe due to the crisis all bicycles in a LBS are prepaid by the LBS owner so companies like Trek etc have secured their profits etc. If on top of this there is an additional agreement that forbids them to offer even lower prices in order to protect the Trek image I don't really know. Also I don't know how they really protect their image with the bikes left unsold and the people waiting for off season discounts in order to buy them.

    For example when I bought my Fuel they had a black one in the store and they were offering me a 20% discount but for the white one I wanted and they had to order there was no discount at all!

    Anyway. In my opinion the one who has the money has also the power. But on the other side early adopters always pay premium.

  10. #10
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    I haven't ran into this problem with any of the bikes I have purchased. As stated there isn't much wiggle room when it comes to the price but you can sometimes get products thrown in like peddles, tires, tubes and even big discounts on shoes.

  11. #11
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    The bike shop world is very niche-y. You have to take advantage of every bike that goes out the door, you may not sell another all week and in the winter time, all month. A business that is in the business of hand outs won't stay in business very long. Bike shops pay for product to sell and if they give it away they are throwing away money. While I agree a bike over 3k is some coin for a bike, the profit isn't made on bikes, it's on accessories. Overhead eats up pretty much everything on the bike. Maybe you come into contact with this because there are a lot of trek dealers. And this may be generalized but many of those dealers are run by successful business people.

    I would say that shops should try to fight for your business like the manager said, but that always doesn't mean haggling and giving free stuff and trading in goats. there is something to be said for a dealer that gives excellent service, that answrs your questions, that takes the time to get you on the right bike, in the right way, and isn't a dooche. That gives free labor for a year that is good quality and timely. That helps out wiith warranties on a timely manner. Maybe they offer a rewards program. I think all of those things are apart of the service and there are tons of shops that don't do those things and those are worth some sort of value. I look at our local shoe store, probably a top 20 store in the nation. They don't hand out free things. They are involved in the community and give great customer service.

    Maybe sometimes it is cool to work out some stuff on accessories, like 30% off the tires and half off sealant. With free labor. But I wouldn't be pissed off if it doesn't happen or say they are a bad shop (maybe they are; maybe their service blows, no labor, no low retail and they are dooches; but then. Why would you shop there???)
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  12. #12
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    I got a great deal on a current model year bike at my local TREK dealer, they also switched out the stem at no charge. They upgraded my tires with minimal cost and did not charge for sealant. Also discount on a dropper post. I never thought I would own a trek, but not only was the buying experience great, it is the most fun bike I have owned in years.
    13' Stache 8

  13. #13
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    The only way to stay in business is to provide a higher level of service and more community involvement than your competition. Bikes are price controlled so you don't have a dealer 20 miles away undercutting you and forcing you to take money off an already slim margin. If you didn't have this the shops that sell in volume will put all the small shops out of business. It would be like what happens when a walmart comes into town.

    The difference is the people who work for the shop. Sometimes I may miss a sale because I'm too honest. If someone comes in and tells me they have $500 to spend and want a good entry level mountain bike, there have been times I would tell them that I know where a great used one is for sale and that it would probably suit their needs better and be a better bike than the trek in that price range. Now does that lose me a sale that day? Probably. However, I think that kind of honesty will bring the customer back for accessories, service and overall advice. These are just my observations over the years I have been selling bikes.

  14. #14
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    What I have noticed is the bikes on the floor are priced on average about $200 under what they are listed on Trek's website.

    I just ordered my 2014 Slash 7. I got a pretty good deal if you go off what Welch621
    said and what the average price tag is on the bikes at the shops. I feel I could have gotten a better deal but it is what is it. but the bigger picture is what matters. This is my 4th Trek bike I have bought from the same store and Have brought them a lot of business. I do also get free tunes ups and other stuff way over and above that they should be charging me for but don't.
    2013 Trek Rig SS
    2013 Trek Rumblefish Elite
    2014 Trek X-Cal 5
    2014 Trek Slash 7

  15. #15
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    Speaking about slim margins could you please tell us what you mean? Because if they are really slim then how is it possible to offer 20-30% discount in last year models? Does it mean that you lose money? Does this mean that you prefer not to give an extra discount when someone comes with cash in your shop only to wait for some months and finally sell the bike with a loss?

    Also how is it possible for direct sales companies like Canyon to sell great bikes with better components for way lower prices and still make a profit?

    Don't get me wrong. I understand that all companies have different pricing policies but I don't understand why they have to start speaking about slim margins etc? Just imagine what would have happened if they were really made in USA instead of Taiwan.

  16. #16
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    When dealing with the previous year models things become less restrictive. If Trek has come out with a new model you are allowed to sell the old model for whatever you see fit. So some stores will order previous year models from Trek at closeout prices and then sell those. It will seem like your getting a 20-30% discount but they are maintaining the same profit margin or sometimes even more.

    What is probably more common, is the dealers are marking the bikes down close to or even sometimes below cost just to move them out of the store. For instance the Superfly lineup this year has been completely changed, from the shorter chainstays to the 2x10 drivetrain. So if you have last years Superfly on the floor and people have been looking at all the new features on line you will probably not sell the previous year model in that case and you would be stuck with it. This is especially true with Road Bikes as I have seen people who look at the last years model which is heavily discounted and has a better component makeup than the current year, and the people will still buy the current year model just so they don't have a bike that isn't the latest and greatest.

    Now the overall reason you see Trek dealers offering great discounts on previous year bikes are the required inventory. Trek has different dealer levels and also different dealer pricing so the more money you do with Trek the more discounts you receive. Im not talking a few thousand either. To qualify as an Authorized dealer you have to do anywhere between $25,000 - $500,000 from Trek a year and to become a gold dealer its $500,000 plus. This is buying from Trek, not overall sales. We also are required to buy at least 25 bikes every pre season, so bikes that are special ordered during the year do not count. So it doesnt matter if you sold all your bikes from the previous year or just one, you will still order 25+ bikes during the pre season and you will still invest $25,000 in Trek Products.

    Don't even get me started on Parts and Accessories either. Each year they require you to buy so much of a certain item. Say this year it might be that you must order $5000 + in shoes, helmets and gloves. Then you must order $3000 in Tires, Tubes and Saddles. Each year it changes, so the next year you may have to get $5000 in Tubes, Tires and Saddles and $2000 in Shoes, Helmets, Gloves and then $1000 in Apparel. This makes it tough if your store doesn't sell much apparel because you still have to order $1000 of it, no exceptions.

    These numbers are just coming out of my head so don't quote me on anything but this is the reason margins are so slim. You have a good amount of overhead in inventory, especially if you carry expensive mountain or road bikes. I think what we forget here is that most people about have a heart attack spending $500 for a bike because they see that at Walmart a "Full Suspension" costs $150. Most of your customer base are looking for a bike they can just ride around the neighborhood. Thats where your core profits come from to be able to carry the Remedies and the Superfly and Madone and things of that nature.

    I don't mean to rant I just think its important to let people know how the bike business works so people don't think we are just out to screw them. Like they say, the only way to make a small fortune in the bike industry is to start out with a big one.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyin_W View Post
    Without knowledge, perception IS reality.

    Welch621's informative post lets riders know that pricing frustrations should target the mfg's NOT the LBS. It's the manufacturer's that dictate terms, pricing to protect profits, and their actions infuriate the consumer - who don't understand the policy. Unfortunately, this hatred is often directed towards the shop.
    [unrelated, but relevant... in 2007 before the cost of US petrol exploded, XOM sold off the last of their corporate-owned stations to avoid direct consumer rage.] Perhaps, district Trek reps should spend one day a month on the LBS floor to observe this feedback?

    IME - an LBS must feel compelled to offer additional services to cinch the deal, and this is a matter of demand, and likability.
    To a point everything is negotiable, yet success varies greatly, and being demanding & doooshy doesn't often work.

    I tend to be infuriated by ********, so when a salesperson starts "steering" me I politely walk away. This happens often at Trek dealers, and I think a result of their corporate training. Yeah, you're bikes may be good, but IMHO your sales tactics certainly blow.
    I mostly agree with what you are saying, but I don't think Trek is doing anything wrong with their pricing. Setting a minimum price to protect the independent bike shops makes sense to me. Is their MSRP too high? I don't know - they have a product to sell and they have to set a price for it. And the consumer can choose to buy it or not.

  18. #18
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    I agree, I don't think they are doing anything wrong. Trek wants your shop to do well, they are investing their brand into you and trusting you with it. A bad bike shop can ruin brand reputation in an area. So the things that Trek does is to protect the local shops. If you have 8 Trek dealers in a 100 mile radius the big shop who moves 5 bikes a day cannot undercut the small shop that may move 1 every 2 weeks. This is what keeps the small business alive, then they are able to provide a higher level of service than a big bike store.

    I am just trying to give some incite into what the pricing margins are so people can better understand the struggle of a small bike shop. I personally love selling the Trek brand and I understand there are online companies out there who sell a comparable bikes components wise at less than Trek does. However in my opinion Trek has one of the best Research and Development units in the biking industry and they are probably the best major bike brand to carry in your shop. If you need anything, like promotional items and such, they will provide them. They offer continual training to their employees and they reward this training with discounts on their products that are unrivaled. They understand the importance of having your sales staff riding your products and they understand that the key to selling anything is believing in the product. I do not have a negative thing to say about the Trek brand or dealing with them as our primary bike brand.

  19. #19
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    Where I live the Trek dealers seem to offer the biggest discounts on prior year models, far higher than the other big brands like Specialised, Scott and Giant.

    Those other brands rarely discount and if they do you're lucky to get 10-15% discount whereas the Trek dealer is often offering about 30%. The Trek bikes also seem to be very well specced at a comparative price range whereas the Specialised or Scott models are often let down with inferior fork, drivetrain or brakes.

    Treks seem to offer the best bang for your buck IMO.

  20. #20
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    Most probably they have many bikes left every year!

    But honestly who is going to buy a new model when they know that in a few months they can get it for up to 30% discount?

    Don't get me wrong. The Trek bikes are great but the pricing policy not so.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paris Galanis View Post
    Most probably they have many bikes left every year!

    But honestly who is going to buy a new model when they know that in a few months they can get it for up to 30% discount?

    Don't get me wrong. The Trek bikes are great but the pricing policy not so.
    I think the example I gave is more about the business model that particular owner/manager of that LBS chooses to adopt not about the Trek brand exclusively as he also stocks Cannondale, Merida, Kona, Fuji etc.

    The other LBS still have 2013 models sitting there, not moving, still at full MRSP.

  22. #22
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    I wasn't only referring to you but to the previous replies as well. The last year models discount is a common practice but the no discount in current year models is a stupid one that leads in more unsold models since people are not stupid and they can wait a few months for a better deal.

    And the same thing applies to other brands as well. Why should I prefer a 2014 Reign SX for full price instead of a 2013 one when there is no difference at all except for the colors?

    PS. Are you Greek (GR)?

  23. #23
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    The only problem with your statement Paris is your using a little too much common sense lol. Ive seen first hand selling road bikes that people want the newest model whether or not its cheaper or has less features. I guess to a lot of people its just a status thing. I ride the current year model every year but thats also because working at the bike shop saves me a good amount of money and Trek wants their dealers employees to be riding the current year models.

  24. #24
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    There are always the early adopters that want the latest. There are also those who see it as a status symbol. Finally there are also the people who simply have so much money that they dont care. And of course they are those (athletes etc) who really need it.

    If it was mobile phones etc with short life cycles I would have understood it. But now everyone knows that the catalogue price is inflated only to give you a "fake" discount and some months later the bikes will cost much less and with the money saved you can get new wheels etc.

    Just to give you another example I wanted to buy a 2013 Scott Genius LT and when I visited the LBS he only gave me 100 euros disount eventhough I wanted to pay cash so I left. 6 months later he finally sold the bike with 600 euros discount! In my opinion this is just stupid.

    Maybe it is just me.

  25. #25
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    You must not have ever been to a boutique dealer. Their markup is considerably higher and are usually okay with not giving any discounts unless you pay cash.

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