Over the last few months, you may have gotten used to seeing people line up down the block to get into stores. While most are trying to get into grocery stores to stock up on essentials, a new essential item has come to the forefront: bicycles. One bike and scooter store in Brooklyn supposedly had people queuing down the block while another in D.C. has had more pre-orders than any other time in its 50-year history. This spread of bike popularity isn’t just happening in America either, but across the world.
Worldwide surge in electric bike and e-scooter sales
According to the N.P.D Group, a massive market research company, sales of electric bikes in America rose by 85% in March. In fact, following suit after toilet paper and PPE, there’s now nationwide shortage of bikes, e-scooters and e-bikes.
Read More: Bike Shortage Due To Coronavirus
Sales of Amsterdam-based VanMoof electric bikes jumped 48% from February to March. Last Monday, the British Transport Minister said those going to work should consider cycling or walking and shares in the bicycle and car parts retailer Halfords blew up by 26%. There’s also been a huge increase in escooter sales across Ireland.
When Germany reopened their bike stores, they too noticed a steep incline in electric bike sales over regular bikes, as their intended use has shifted from leisure to daily commuting.
Britain and France have also opened many temporary bicycle lanes in an effort to get people back to work safely. The UK has also seen a spike in e-bike and conversion kit sales. Finally, police in America are now testing using electric bicycles in their duties due to their speed and versatility.
Why are e-bikes and scooters suddenly so popular?
The first answer to this question is obvious: nobody wants to be on public transport right now. Why risk taking the bus or train when you’re clearly safer on an e bike or converted pedal bike? It’s hardly easy to distance yourself from others during the morning rush, while riding or scootering is far safer under the right conditions.
Read More on How to Ride Safely in COVID-19 Conditions
The second reason for the sudden uptake in e-biking is that they have now become a necessity rather than a luxury. As an ebike or e-scooter gets you further, quicker and with less effort (if you choose), they are perfect commuter vehicles. So, people are now seeking the best electric bike for daily use rather than for occasional fun. All of the northern hemisphere is also now going into summer, so there would already be an expected rise in sales.
Exercise has also become very popular as people are stuck at home with time on their hands. Getting in shape is a “when I have time” pastime for some people and a daily necessity to maintain good physical and mental health for others. With many only allowed limited time to exercise depending on the restrictions in their particular region, getting on an ebike to make the most of it seems fitting.
Electric bikes are one of the best ways to get in shape and build an enjoyable, consistent workout habit. An e-bike may require less effort, but that doesn’t mean they’re effortless. One US study found that people who rode e-bikes for 40 minutes each week for a month shed body fat and improved in cardiovascular health, aerobic capacity, and blood sugar control. Cycle commuters also have a lower risk of developing cancer and heart disease. >
What this means for the riding community
As the trend of using personal bikes/e-bikes and scooters picks up, comparison between brands, manufacturer, quality and value of products becomes more important than ever. Sellers will also be tightening up their support and after sales services.
From the e bike provider point of view, the pandemic caused a big shock in the industry by disrupting their supply chain and their inventory levels. This effect has then transferred to customers who can’t get the bike they want due to a lack of stock.
When the market stabilizes and the dust settles, there will be new norms, and bike brands and manufacturers need to take into account the whole sector’s excess capacity. There will be both a backlog of delayed orders and new competitors seeking a quick buck saturating the marketplace. This could have a negative impact on cash flow and operations for those within the industry if not properly prepared for.
At EBikeBC, we have taken measures to make sure we are able to comply with customer needs and are well prepared to meet the demand in this situation. We offer a variety of electric bikes, electric trikes, special electrical recumbent bikes, e scooters, and even conversion kits to mount on your own bike. Get in touch with us if you have questions or need help finding the best electric bike.