In E-bikes, Lake Tahoe Biking, Mountain biking, Road cycling, Tahoe Mountain Biking, Tahoe Road Cycling

Bicycle Industry Trends & Insights

I recently attended Interbike Market Week in Reno, NV, (September 18-20), the largest annual U.S. bicycle industry tradeshow for retailers and suppliers to share, learn, enjoy, and perform the business of bicycling. I attended presentations, and spoke with buyers and sellers to get a pulse of the state of the bicycle industry. I thought you might be interested in learning about some of the bicycle industry trends and insights.

The following comments and data come from presentations made by Jennifer Boldry, Director of Research, People for Bikes, Dirk Sorenson, Director of Client Development, NPD Group (formerly National Purchase Diary), and Bernie Doering, Bicycle Product Suppliers Association (BPSA), Statistics chair.

Consumers are spending in new ways

  • They are spending $283 more per month on subscription services (i.e. Netflix, Hulu, cell phone, memberships, Amazon Prime, Cloud, etc.). These are new categories in recent years.
  • New product categories emerge – smart home, marijuana, and small appliance innovations
  • Healthcare continues to demand more – reducing disposable income
  • Domestic travel up nearly 2% for $1T in 2017 in the U.S.
  • Cycling continues to grow $5.88B, but by 2021 marijuana is forecast to be a $21B industry

Bike sales

  • Bikes sold between $500-$2000 were 92% of the market
  • At $598M and growing at 5% year over year, mountain bikes (mtb) represent the single largest overall category. Full suspension continues to gain up $46M over the previous year
  • Wheel size performance in mtb is shifting back to 29er at 42% of dollars spent
  • Two trends are emerging $2500 -$3000 range is causing added growth, and premium upscale 29er design bikes above $4500 are in demand.
  • Overall road cycling is down 4%. Cross/Gravel bikes grew 22%.
  • E-bikes had 75% increase with road bike designs gaining share
Bicycle parts and components continue to increase in sales

Upgrade accessories

Summarized Insights:

Road bike sales dropping. The belief is that road cyclists are: not feeling safe on the road with increasing traffic and injuries, there is little product innovation, the product has good longevity, and there is increasing interest in mountain biking and a new category called graveling.

Mountain Bike interest continues to grow due to innovation, increasing interest in full-suspension and 29er wheel size, and the desire to have fun off the road.

Gravel bikes are growing stronger. These bikes are road bike frames with wider wheels and tires allowing for off-road use (i.e. gravel fire roads)

Electric bikes (E-bikes) have a 75% increase in sales over the past year with 50% of the buyers over 55 years of age. The dominate use is transportation/commuting.

Electronics are a growing category. These can be bike computers, power meters and GPS units. These devices aid performance building, navigation, and allow the sharing of experiences on social media platforms.

Service continues to grow as buyers upgrade their bikes with new components, accessories and have a need for expert service installation.

Generally, the bicycle industry trend is seeing buyers spending more money, higher priced items, and trading up.

You can participate in 2019

We are excited Interbike has chosen Reno for its annual trade show for the next four years. You, as a member of the public, can participate during Interbike 2019 by attending the Northstar Freeride Festival, September 13-15. This is a great opportunity to ride the bikes of your dreams, test an E-bike and/or help you decide what your next purchase will be.

I will see you there,

Ty “The Bike Guy” Polastri

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