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Thursday
Jul062017

The new site and costumes for errybody

We've been planning a new site for a long time. The particular difficulty in our case had been finding a platform that does both e-commerce and blog hosting well. Most of the awareness of us is driven through our blog, which is both a big word of mouth thing but also a big Google results thing - there are a lot of searches where we turn up high in the results, and we need that. But the e-commerce side of a custom wheel site is no mean feat, either. Consider that if someone wants a set of "Easton R90s with White Industries T11s," there are 7 hub color options, 4 different spoke lacing combinations, 4 different spoke type choices, and 8 nipple material/color choices.

That alone is more than some blog-heavy/commerce-light sites can manage. We offer tens of thousands of wheel choices. When you don't offer color choices and you limit rim options to a couple and hub options to a couple, it's really easy. Another way to do it is to offer only, say, three colors of hub (which a lot do). But again, we don't want to do that, and people come here expecting more than that, so all that would do would fill up our inbox with "can I get purple?" and then that swamps our time. We'd rather spend the communications time on substantive "what's going to be my best set of wheels" discussion and not on transaction mechanics. But since we don't have neither $1,000,000 to spend on the site nor the capacity to administer it as well as we'd like to, there will always be the need to do some things off the menu. The nature of custom. 

Our current site's mobile platform is also more or less terrible, and we want and need to improve that. Which happens with the new site. 

But we're close now. Our goal is to have the site live next week. Probably 90% of the variety of stuff we'd sell in a year is already loaded in and ready to go.

The new site also needed to help us with merchanidizing tires and rotors and cassettes and other stuff that makes your life easy when you get it through us. It's awfully nice to pull a completely ready to install set of wheels out of the box, equipped with stuff recommended by people who stay obssessively tuned in to this stuff and who ride and test and aren't limited to pushing one brand or another. 

Pat took this picture after smoking Dave (and everyone else) up App GapOne thing we actually can use some help from you on is pictures - we'd love to feature your wheels and bike in product photos for the new site. The standard wheels against a static background shots are fine, but people want to see what wheels look like on bikes. And they don't have to be the standard #baaw bike against a wall shots - odd duck, random cool photos are just hip and dandy with us. Send them to the info@ if you can - thanks.

So look out for that, watch the Tour, and buy some wheels.

In other news, Sagan got completely robbed. As we said on Twitter the other day, the only reason Sagan turned out to be the villain is that he had the skill and cajones to stay upright (and then get second - the AUDACITY!). If he falls over, the whole thing is Cav's fault 100%. As anyone who watched the Olympic MTB race last year saw, Sagan has a mix of power and skills that cycling has never seen. And while the world has seen his power before, I think it's never seen his skills. He got screwed. 

LAST, AND THIS IS IMPORTANT - YOU CAN BUY THE NEW NOVEMBER KIT WHENEVER YOU LIKE. Click on this link and it will take you to the Verge store where you can get the world's new favorite cycling costume. 

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Reader Comments (3)

You are 100% right about Sagan!! His bike handling skills are second to none in the pro peloton. There are countless examples of him staying upright where everyone else crashes.

July 9, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterScott

HI Dave,

Good luck with the new site! My guess is that you might get more sales on non-wheel parts if they are, somehow, made more visible. My wheels were a feature build. When I saw that I could get them with tires, tubes, and even a cassette, I was happy. I didn't know that you sold that kind of stuff. So it might be good for your bottom line to have a way to make it more obvious that you have additional things for sale.

Just a thought and not necessarily a good one: Maybe have a discussion forum? I realize that such a thing can go off the Rails (hah!) quickly and take effort to maintain. On the other hand, you get a lot of people replying to blog posts and, it seems, wanting to be a part of your brand. Maybe a discussion forum would help build, I don't know, buzz, brand loyalty, and general time wasting?

That Cannonade shot up there is mine. Feel free to use it on the new site. The corn here in Indiana is getting taller. Maybe I'll take and send you a shot of your wheels on a bike amongst the corn.

July 11, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJon W

Jon - We've considered a forum, and it's a good idea. Might be tough to execute (we haven't made it a thought for the new site) but if it's easy it would make sense. Thanks

July 14, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterdave

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