Coronavirus brings extraordinary bikes sales growth in US

LeBron bikes his way to training

The coronavirus pandemic created an unexpected boost in bicycle sales in the USA in March, which accelerated even further during the month of April.

According to figures published by the market research company, NPD Group, for the first time, total market value topped $1 billion in April, as compared to sales during that month which typically fall between $550 million and $575 million.

This sales gain reflects a 203% increase in bicycles that fell into the category of “leisure” or “lifestyle” models, which sold at prices under $200. Also, front suspension MTBs were up by more than 150%, while children’s bikes increased by 107% for the month as well.

“For far too long the cycling industry has been solely focused on the pinnacle athlete, but these results show that the industry can benefit from a broader, family and beginner focus. This is a silver lining, and one of the important sports retail lessons to come out of the pandemic,” said Matt Powell, NPD’s sports industry advisor.

Another trend the NPD Group reported in March and April, was the purchase of cycling equipment for indoor riding. For instance, stationary bike sales grew by 270% for March, while April sales were second-highest on record with a growth rate of 415%.

“The excitement that consumers are showing in cycling, particularly in recreational and family riding, is an absolutely amazing for the industry. This is a unique opportunity for retailers, manufacturers, and non-profit organisations to engage new riders,” said Dirk Sorenson, sports industry analyst at NPD.

“Continued growth will require them not only to have product in stock, but to focus on new riders’ basic needs such as how to fix a flat tyre, or locating a family-friendly trail to ride. Addressing these basics right now has immeasurable ROI, and the industry should be laser-focused on servicing these new riders.”

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