News – Happy Biking

News

Sorry, 6 months have passed - how did that happen? October 30, 2016 23:07

Wow! Six whole months have passed since I last posted here! How on earth did that happen?

So, I should really apologise for that.  The perils of being a sole trader is that there's never enough of you to go around.

Throughout the summer, its been a lot busier with repairs and servicing, and I've tried to keep this news coming out via our Facebook page, I hope you've enjoyed the updates. 

Our repairs and servicing are very reasonably priced, with all work carried out with pride. After all, I do appreciate just how much your bike means to you.  So it's looked after accordingly.

 If you've not "liked" our Facebook page, then why not?  It's full of updates about new products we're thinking about adding, and ones which have just arrived.

Just click on the link, we'd be delighted to see you there

 

I'll blog again soon, promise I won't leave it so long!

Carol

 


Always make sure it's ready... March 28, 2016 22:23

We've been incredibly busy working on repairs this past few days, and I just thought I'd take a few minutes to let you know some of the stuff we've been up to.
Kona Shred has had a new bottom bracket and gear cables fitted, along with a general check over and clean up.
Unknown brand mountain bike has gone from being completely unrideable following a crash, to something that will now continue to allow it's owner to get to and from work!
Older, again unknown brand, but with some pretty good components, has had a new lease of life after spending too much time in the shed. Thus allowing it's owner to get some cycling time in with the kids.
We've also carried out quite a few repairs on kids bikes. These have ranged from standard punctures, to stuff that I'm seriously surprised hasn't caused an accident before now.
If your bike(s) has been tucked away in the shed over winter, you really need to have it checked over before venturing out again.  
This is doubly important when it comes to kids bikes.  
The best time to find out the brakes don't work, is not when it doesn't stop!!!
Last word of warning to parents:  Don't tackle jobs on kids bikes if you're not really sure what you're doing.
Bad repairs cause more damage and harm than no repairs.
Be on the safe side, book it in.

Should my business really be competing with a kitten? Now there's a question you don't hear every day. January 28, 2016 21:20

Life around here is never boring, that's for sure, and this month has been no exception.  I've been doing a fair bit of "brand building" lately.  This is certainly an interesting task, and definitely not an easy one!  Although we started our life on eBay, opening this shop has encouraged me to get our name "out there" in as many ways a possible.  We have a Facebook page, we've also had a Twitter account for some time, so it was time to try my hand at Instagram.  

An interesting exercise, that's for sure.  I've learned quite a few things.  For example; did you know that a cat can get more followers in 3 hours, than a small business can get in 2 weeks???  Also, apparently, people like to view cats in their lunch hour!!!  These things I know, as I've been competing with my own daughter's kitten!  So officially, @beepthecat15 is easier to market than bike parts.

@beepthecat15

Yeah, I know, he's cute...

Please, if you "do" Instagram, give us a follow, at @happy.biking :)

Advertising aside, I've been adding more items to our "Bling Your Bike" section. With more yet to come, so stayed tuned!  Our "Price Drop" section too, always has items changing, so again, always worth checking out on a regular basis.

We've been sending out a fair few emails lately, highlighting any good deals we have on, just so that you are kept informed. I design these from scratch by myself, so hopefully you find these useful, and not spammy. If you do, drop me an email telling me what you would prefer to hear about, I'm always open to suggestions.  I would seriously love to hear from you.

Well, time I was sourcing more parts, and competing with a cat, so until next time...

Carol


Festivities are over, so what now? January 13, 2016 22:50

Christmas and New Year are long gone, and we're rapidly marching through January already. Where does the time go?

New build season is now upon us. I hope we can offer some assistance there.  I've been adding new stock here and there (as fast as little me can).  One thing I have tried to do, is increase the variety in our Bling Your Bike section.  This is proving to be incredibly popular, so new parts and colours are being introduced all the time.  I was recently asked for Orange and Green Jockey Wheels, these are now available.  So if there's an item, or colour, you would particularly like to see, let me know and I'll try and source it.

I'm in the process of sending out some emails highlighting our offers for all you guys building, be it new or old. If you've bought from us in the past, then you should be on our mailing list.  If you're not, you can easily sign up by scrolling to the bottom of any page on this site, then filling in the details.

Thanks for taking the time to read this, and I truly hope you are always Happy Biking!

'Til next time,

Carol


It's November, who want's a bargain...? November 02, 2015 16:10

November's here, so Christmas is rapidly approaching.   With that, I thought I should remind you about our small, but growing "Bling Your Bike" section at www.happybiking.scot.  Lots of nuts, bolts, jockey wheels and more, mostly colour coded, so you can add your own bit of personality to your rig.   Perfectly sized, and priced, for that extra special stocking filler.

I'm also aware, that almost everyone likes a bit of a bargain at this time of year.  Especially, if you're thinking about giving yourself, and your bike, a nice Christmas treat.   So I'm dropping the price on various items, right across the shop.  These can change from time to time, so be sure not to miss out.

As a taster, here's a couple to get you going :)

Giant Glory 00 Frame, Used, Minted

Fox Float Evo 29er RL Forks, NEW

You'll find these, and more, in our new "Offers" section 

REMEMBER, if you've got your eye on one of our items that's a bit out of your cash price range.   We are delighted to remind you of our Lay-By service.   Payments to suit your pocket, with delivery once paid in full.   With NO interest, NO hassles, just pure and simple common sense.

Our last deal to tell you about is our discount code "save me a tenner!"   Giving you the chance to save £10 for every purchase totally £100 or more.  This is valid right upto Midnight on Christmas Eve.

Hope these deals will keep you Happy Biking on the run up to Christmas.

Carol

p.s. Keep up to date with our news on a daily basis by giving us a "like" on Facebook  Happy Biking on Facebook

 


So everyone wants to make their rig unique, don't they? September 08, 2015 15:20

Well I hope you've enjoyed your Summer, shame about the weather, but then that's the UK for you!

I've been furiously working away on the boring stuff, namely accounts :(   So if you've noticed I've not blogged in a while, you now know the reason why.

With all this boring, yet essential stuff mostly out of the way, I can get back to bringing more great MTB bargains to you.

Looks like our "Bling Your Bike" section is becoming incredibly popular, and I'm adding new parts to this along the way.    Our latest arrival is our new smart instant mudguard.   This nifty little mudguard is instantly added to the undercarriage of your seat, without the need for clips or ties, and removed easily once the shower (hopefully) passes!   Completely recyclable, they're available in RED, BLUE, GREEN, BLACK, WHITE & YELLOW.   Click on the image below for the full details.

Smart instant mudguard from Happy Biking

 

If you've not done so already, make sure you give us a like on Facebook.   Here you'll find details of bikes we're breaking soon, and also offers exclusively available in our shop at www.happybiking.scot   Remember, these offers are NOT available on eBay, and usually only advertised on our Facebook Page

Time for me to go find some more great MTB bargains for you all.

As always, I wish you all Happy Biking.

Carol


How many of you can truly say this? July 28, 2015 23:24

It's rapidly approaching the end of July, and we're more than halfway through 2015 already!  Isn't it amazing how time flies?  Yes, especially when you're having fun, but in my experience, the older you get, the faster it goes anyway.

However, in saying that, I do think my time is flying by because I am truly enjoying what I do.   Now it's not that I haven't enjoyed jobs I've had in the past, I have, but never to this standard, if you know what I mean?   I mean, as I've worked in sales, I've had really great times.  Times when all the orders and more, that you've been expecting, come flooding in.   These times were amazing, but they were always short lived.

Since I starting up Happy Biking officially, 3 years ago, I can honestly say, I have never had such an enjoyable time working!    Not that it's all been plane sailing, way, way, way far from that, I can assure you.   It's not that I'm coining it in either, 'cos trust me, I'm not.   It's about feeling that every single thing you do, counts.   It's about feeling that you have given it everything you possibly can.   It's about knowing where you make your mistakes, and sorting them, properly.   The best thing about working for yourself, is knowing that every mistake is your responsibility.   It's about knowing when to kick your own butt, and when to take a bow.   All these things and more, give you the drive to push yourself just that bit further every time.

Here at Happy Biking I have so many hats to wear, it's unbelievable, but that's what makes it so enjoyable.   I am, indeed, the original multi-tasker.   I have the privilege of being "Purchasing & Procurement", obviously as their name depicts, and something my late husband was just THE best at, but something that I have become quite proud of myself about.  Then I am "Technical Handling", who dismantle, inspect, repair and clean all parts pertaining to the original bike. A position previously carried out expertly by my late husband, but one I have grown into.   Moving on I become "Sales & Marketing".  A position I obviously felt most at home with to start with!   We then have "Packaging & Despatch", when I take care of getting your prize purchases off to you as quickly and safely as possible.   The tail end of it all are, firstly "Accounts & Admin".   A subject that has taken a great deal of my education and thrown it into use, along with quite a bit of new learning too!  Secondly, and finally, I am "Systems & I.T".   Now this is something which has caused me many, many hours of actually tearing my hair out.  Yet something that I have been able to use my computing knowledge, (gained from I.T sales) and combine it with my desire to get "hands on" with stuff.    Mind you, I have so enjoyed the "Technical Handling" bit for exactly the same reason.    Ever think it's going full circle here?   Not withstanding, the bit that truly holds everything together, is "Customer Service".   This is something that honestly comes absolutely naturally to me.    With my background in sales, you cannot leave a customer unhappy, EVER.  This is the cement that holds any business together, something that every business needs to hold to the highest possible standard, and something of which I am incredibly proud.

All comes back to the title of this blog.   How many of you, can honestly, hand on heart, say that you truly, truly, in every aspect, enjoy your current job?

I, definitely, without a doubt, can.

Take care, until next time.

Carol 


In my experience, and my personal opinion... July 01, 2015 22:59

Customer Service, what is it? Not rocket science, in my opinion. Providing the Customer with the best service surely. Ok, so I'm self-employed, having well and truly served my time in Customer Service, Telesales, and Direct Sales. So I know this means having the Customer believe that he/she has been given the best service possible, even if the issue cannot be completely resolved. I would hope you would all agree with this, no matter whether you are the service provider or indeed the Customer.
So knowing this, if you were placed in, even perhaps unfamiliar, Customer facing territory, you would behave as you would wish to be treated, were you the Customer. Right?
Apparently not. This week I have had a manager who didn't fully or even slightly compute the importance or impact of a non-operational online payment facility. I have also been informed of an ASDA supermarket when one employee seems to think that Customers should automatically know who Robert is. Then in the same ASDA on another occasion, an employee seems fit to inform a Customer that they have "sold out" of celery, when they clearly had such an abundance that they were actually selling it!
Either Customer Service training, and the importance of it, have been lost along the way, or we simply have a clear and cut case of pay peanuts, get monkeys.....

Our site doesn't show our Customer Service level, one of which I'm very proud.   Our eBay feedback goes a long way to highlight this though, so there's a link to this below.

Thanks for listening to my rant, I hope you think Happy Biking provides excellent Customer Service, we certainly try to!

'Til next time,

Carol 


Facebook, Twitter and some new ideas April 24, 2015 22:17

Who can believe that it's almost the end of April already?  Easter Holidays out of the way, and all kids back at school! Yee-ha!!!   The perils of running a business from your home, combined with the obvious benefits (I think) of being able to work every hour you wish.   Well, it's now after 10pm on Friday night, and I'm writing this blog, enough said.   I do love my job though...

With new build season well under way, we're trying to keep as many new parts coming your way, as quickly as possible.   Not as easy as it may seem, but this one-woman outfit hopes you appreciate the effort!

I've recently added a new "bling your bike" section in our parts directory.  This is pretty small as present, but I'm constantly sourcing new parts to add to this.  For the time being, I hope you like the concept and the parts available for now.   If you have any suggestions for parts you would like to see here, I would love to hear from you.  The idea, is to design the shop as much around what you want to see, as what I think should be there.   Maybe it's just a particular colour scheme that you would like to see more of? Whatever it is, let me know, and I will listen.

We've been posting to our Facebook page for quite some time, and this has proved to be pretty popular.   Thanks, it's great to see the interaction.   In particular, our "this evening's entertainment" posts seem to be rather popular.   I must admit, I do enjoy collecting interesting stuff to include, even though some of it may not be MTB related, most of it, generally has some sort of wheel relevance at least.

Recently however, I've been posting to our Twitter page too.  Now is incredibly new, and as yet, we only have a handful of followers.   Most of the time, I still feel like I'm tweeting to myself and back again!   Like I said though, this is really new, so if you're feeling generous, and you're actively tweeting, I would truly appreciate you giving us a wee follow, and maybe even the odd retweet if you're feeling really generous!

Lastly, we do have a few tasty deals on the go just now.  One in particular, is a ONE OFF deal.   Fox 32 Float 140 CTD FiT, with an incredible £100 savings on our eBay price.   This can be reduced even further by using our checkout code FORK-10 

Time to sign off for now, and get some other stuff done.

As always, Happy Biking folks.

Carol

p.s.  I've been trying to improve the general layout and speed of the website too, so if you have a spare minute, have a look around, and give me some feedback please...


What's going on now then? March 12, 2015 16:30

Well, I'm still slogging away, tweaking this, changing that, and it's still far from a perfect webshop, but then Rome wasn't built in a day, now was it?

We've now added a service that's been in operation for quite a while, but not greatly advertised.   To be honest, it's probably still not greatly advertised, but that will come too...

So what is this "not greatly advertised" service?   It's our "Lay-By" service.   So what's this then?  I hear you ask.   It goes like this:

  1. You see a part that you would really like, but you don't have all the cash right now.   We've all been in that situation.
  2. Contact me, by phone, email, fb message, carrier pigeon if you like, and we talk.   That's easy too.
  3. We work out a simple deal, where you pay a deposit, then pay the rest over an agreed time.
  4. As soon as it's paid for in full, I ship it off to you.

The real main points are, that you pay NO INTEREST.   You get your item when it's paid for.   No fuss, no hassles, just pure and simple common sense.

I'm trying to get this as widely advertised as possible, but this isn't as easy as it may seem.   I'm posting it on facebook, and have sent out emailers too.   So hopefully doing this over and over again, will get the message over.  

You should hopefully, find some new, but not necessarily brand new, stock trickling into our shop over the next wee while.   It's quite a slog, when you're the buyer, the dismantler, the marketing, the sales, the admin, the post, and the tea boy, all rolled into one!   Let's not forget customer service too!

What probably makes it all possible, is the same reason our opening hours at midnight to midnight, 7 days a week.   What's this secret ingredient?   It's all carried out from my home!

Just as well, right now, it's dinner time too :)

'Til next time,

Carol

 


It's all new, but definitely enjoyable... February 16, 2015 23:30

So we are now just over a month into our new venture with www.happybiking.scot   How's it going? Well, it's definitely enjoyable.  Not entirely easy, but enjoyable.

Now you may think, well that's not the best way to run a business, but how long have you lasted in a job you don't enjoy?   Probably not very long, and the truth is, I REALLY DO love this!    I'm constantly tweaking things here and there, inventing "new ideas" that may or may not work, but only time will tell.  

Something that I definitely enjoy, and I am thinking our watchers might be finding fun too, is our nightly (well almost :) entertainment section.    This is where I a try to show some of the amazing talent and entertainment out on the great World Wide Web, highlighting cycling in, really, any way, shape or form.   Tonight's offering has just been added, so be sure to take a look.

We have Fork sale on at present, we have an amazing deal on certain Frames, and components that are extra special too, which I hope you will find interesting.

Check out our Frames here.

Hope you keep popping back to see what we have, because we really do want you to be Happy Biking ;)

Carol Hogg

 


5 days in, and some new arrivals! January 15, 2015 15:02

Well we are now five days into our new shop adventure, and I must say, things are going pretty well.   We have our first customer, thank you Mark :), and quite a few visitors.
You may have spotted a couple of new pictures on our front page.   These are the next two bikes we will be breaking; Lapierre Spicy 216 2010 and Cube Stereo 2012.   As time goes on, I hope to keep this going as a bit of a "what's coming next" section, and serving as a bit of an information area.
If you haven't seen us on Facebook yet, please jump over and give us a "like". at  https://www.facebook.com/Happy.Biking.2012  Thanks too, to the new "likes" we have had lately.
Bit of a short one here, as I do have to get on with breaking and cleaning these bikes.   We always remove any dirt/grime/oil build-up from all our parts, and hopefully it shows!
Happy Biking!

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First Blog by Happy Biking :) January 10, 2015 00:37

Well here we are, and here I am.  Happy Biking's VERY FIRST blog, and I'm writing it !!!

What can I say?  It's been quite a journey so far, here's our story.....

Happy Biking was actually tried tentatively, around 6 years ago, being the Brainchild of my late Husband Gary.   Having had four kids, we had discovered the joys of cycling, but were disappointed at how the "quality" bikes were out of our league, and how the "affordable" ones were, well such bad quality.  So Gary started with a basic good frame (generally Specialized), and simply swapped out the parts, bit by bit, but by buying other similar bikes that just needed a bit of TLC.   Very soon, he realised that many other people, most probably, had a similar problem.   That, and, along the way, he had accumulated quite a few parts that he simply couldn't use.   He spotted the business potential.   I, on the other hand, had worked in Customer Service, followed by both Internal and External I.T. and Communication Sales, with a combined 25 years experience.    So, Gary started to buy, and I started to sell.   All of this happening whilst Gary was working full-time as a driver, and I was bringing up a large teenager, and 3 midgets !!!   We were just about ready to "take the plunge", by Gary giving up his job, (and our security), when a bomb-shell hit out little family.   Gary was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, shortly before his 40th birthday, and passed away 9 months later.  On this, I will elaborate no further, except to say, that it was agreed that I would continue our little business, as this was my wish.   So he bought me in some bikes to be starting with.

In Gary's honour, and with the name he chose, Happy Biking was born !

To start with, I just added items to our eBay selling account, but then our Happy-Biking shop on eBay was created - how proud I felt.

As our little business has grown, I have learned a lot.   I have used the Sales + Customer Service experience I have, and combined it with all the information that I have listened to, and subsequently "absorbed" to build our business.   Not profit orientated, although this is obviously essential, but by ensuring that every single customer is 100% happy with their product, and their buying experience.

Our eBay experience has been invaluable, and will NEVER end, as they truly have an amazing audience.   However, eBay fees are expensive, and we know that customers want the best deal possible, so the time has now come, to make the "big shift" from being solely eBay based, to branching out into the World Wide Web.

As we promote though, Customer Service is our Top Priority.   So, with this in mind, our new online shop offers EXACTLY the same items as our eBay shop, but because we don't incur the same fees, we are passing this missing cost on to our Customers, by means of REDUCING our prices by UPTO 10%

Well, that's Blog #1 over, I hope you like what I have to say.