How To Start A Profitable E-bike Repair Shop In As little As 6-Weeks Even Without Previous Bike Business Knowledge!
Expert Reveals the proven Ultimate Guide for starting your Electric Bike Repair Business without stressing out, wasting time and money.
If you asked me, what is the greatest opportunity in the whole e-bike business for the next decade, I would say REPAIR.
I will tell you why the e-bike repair business is the best, go more in-depth on how to start your e-bike repair center in the shortest possible time, do it right for the first time, get booked with customers from the start, and start making money immediately. I will give you a complete checklist at the end, which will help you to keep track of all the essential parts. But first, I want to let you know that this is real — we use this blueprint to open new e-bike repair centers for our clients, and it works.
It took me five years to get to the first 500 000€ ($610k) in sales and services revenue per year at my first local e-bike shop.
I started in 2012 when electric bikes weren’t hot yet, and I thought these results were fantastic. After more than eight years of work, I know that one bike mechanic can produce up to 20 000 per month and that the small 3 or 4 people team can produce 1 Million the second year after the start.
In my 6th year in this business, I wanted to open new locations. I made some mistakes (it is a long story for another time), and I had to start all over. The second time, it took me only three months to go to the same level and have even bigger profits.
With the growth of sales, the demand for repair was even bigger. When we couldn’t keep up with the repair speed, I had to create a network of external repair centers. We have opened nine new locations in record time. We did it, and it worked. After eight years of trial and error, and with the experience of helping other shop owners do it, I have found a system that works. And it works for the people from the bike business and the people outside of this business.
The demand for everything e-bike related is huge.
Let me start with some basic market data. Everybody is now speaking about electric bikes, their sales growth, and more. Many statistics predict massive growth over the next years or a decade. You can check some of these links to find yourself:
E-Bike Sales To Grow From 3.7 Million To 17 Million Per Year By 2030, Forecast Industry Experts
The deadly pandemic has boosted cycling. During the first European lockdowns in March and April, a surge in demand led…
Forget electric cars - e-bikes will be the top selling EV in the next decade
Analysts are saying they expect e-bike sales to enter warp speed over the next few years. Deloitte says it expects 130…
E-Bike Market Size to Reach USD 46.04 Billion by 2026; Growing Inclination towards Energy-efficient…
Key Companies Profiled in the Electric Bike Market Research Report are Giant Manufacturing Co. Ltd, Energica Motor…
These links are just a small sample of what is going on with the electric bike business. The key takeaway is this: Electric bikes are here to stay.
And with the increasing amount of sales, there will be even more demand for repair.
Electric bikes need much more maintenance than regular bikes. So the only question with this opportunity is — how fast can you make it work and take your market share.
Advantages of the ebike repair business are:
- You get customers from everywhere (local people, your local competition, e-shops, direct sell bike brands, etc.) for a very low cost for cheap local marketing, or even for free!
- You don’t need to have a lot of dead money in the business — no big space, no big stock, no many employees. So you don’t need any real cash upfront.
- You have the most control and information about the customer and advantage over brands, distributors, and other players. You are the closest to the customer.
- You can sell anything to those customers later (products, services, and even new expensive electric bikes).
- Last but not least (especially in the pandemic) — People need to sport individually (for instance, eMTB business) and avoid public transport (city e-bike business).
- Bonus: Now everybody is supporting cycling, mobility, and especially electric bikes
- Bonus: This process is repeatable — repeatable with the number of work stations or locations. When you can run profitably one repair center, you can open new “production lines” or new branches with the same knowledge.
To sum it up, as a repair center, you are closest to the customer, create direct relationships, and have the most influence on his riding experience and buying decisions. I also think the future is about independent ebike repair networks.
So what to do to open your ebike repair shop?
Here is the strategy for how to do it. I have divided it into weeks because we follow this system with opening new repair shops. You can think of the weeks as the key milestones and do it at your speed. But you have to follow the steps.
This system works for people with experience and people who have no experience or any other repair shop assets. If you already have some experience, existing workshop, tools, and other stuff, you can shorten the process.
- Week 1 — Know Your Market — Get information about the global, but especially your local market. How do you fit into the area? Make your company’s decisions — your niche on the market, size, customers, and services. Check your competition, but do it better, modern. Don’t create another same looking same old-school bike shop.
- Week 2 — Do The Planning And Targets — How much money do you want to make? How big will your company be? In other words — be clear on your goals and targets, do a simplified Business Plan, Financial Plan, and Timeline.
- Week 3 — Create Your Brand and Design Your Workspace — Start with brand identity and marketing plan. Start planning the workshop floor layout and start working on getting the required equipment.
- Week 4 — Get Supply and Systems — Start getting vendors and getting parts. Build your processes — from customer flow to the workflow. Set up systems to help you manage the company.
- Week 5 — Build your Workspace & Warm-Up — Build your shop, and start working immediately. Plan the Launch.
- Week 6 — Fine-tune and Launch — Adjust anything based on experience from week five and launch big!
This list is just a basic outline of the process. I have created a complete checklist to download and watch an explanation video (get it here). If you follow this process, you can start your ebike repair center in 6 weeks.
No experience required!
I went through this process a few times in my company and tens of times with my clients from entirely different backgrounds. So I know it works — it is proven.
Let me introduce Milan, owner of an event agency. His business completely stopped during the COVID-19 pandemic. He opened a brand new electric bike repair center based on my 6-week system.
My company is one of the biggest event agencies in our region. For the last 20 years, we have worked for more than 200 top companies — for instance, Samsung, Volkswagen, Coca-Cola, P&G, AT&T, Johnson Controls, IBM, Renault, and more. The Coronavirus crisis has stopped our event business — it stopped completely. Our passion for bikes gave us an idea to start doing this business. We had an idea about a top repair center focusing on electric bikes. We needed an expert and contacted Steve Ceman to help us with it. Thanks to his excellent training, we have moved forward really fast. He opened the doors to all the new topics. His knowledge is vast — he gave us an introduction with great analytics, charts, and the market trend overview for the next years. Based on this data, we have together set the goals of this project. We were progressing great, but it also needed a lot of commitment from our side. We had no clue in the beginning how much knowledge we would need. We are starting the biggest repair center in our capital city. We are well prepared, and I have to admit that we would not do it without Steve’s help. This whole project gained interest also from our new suppliers. When we didn’t launch yet, we had an independent visit from local Shimano and Specialized headquarters. We humbly opened our doors, and when they came in, their first words were “WOW!”. Milan
Now Milan and his team are opening this repair center with additional special services, setting him apart from the competition.
You can do it!
If you want to open your electric bike repair center based on the knowledge we have learned and earned, download our free complete Checklist below.
About the author
I am Ebike Steve Ceman. I have been riding bikes for more than 35 years, racing for 15 years, and running my own business with electric bikes since 2012. I have been selling, servicing, and renting electric bikes — I have sold e-bikes for millions of €/$ and serviced thousands of them. I have learned a lot in my business, and now I help others to do it better and faster. I advise small business owners to set, grow, or optimize their rentals, repair, or sales. I also work with bigger companies on product and business model feedback and development — ebike brands, models, drive systems. I help companies not only from the bike industry but also from entirely different industries and experiences. I am super passionate about the ebike future; that’s why I created the Ebike Future Conference, where we gather people who are creating and redefining this industry. You can find more information about me at https://ebikesteve.com