Hopefully you never followed through on your fantasy about opening a ebike store. Your technical knowledge is the last thing you'll need to operate a business successfully. Have you ever sold anything before ? Have you worked wi customers on a regular basis ? Do you understand inventory and cash flow planning ? Do you have at least $75k in capital, and ability to do marketing, come up with a website design, and then continually know how to market yourself and create word of mouth references ? Who will do your accounting, handle your taxes, operate your quick books, and what inventory software will you use ? Oh, so you can just wing that ?
Try selling some ebikes from your home first and see if you can get people to show up by advertising on Craigslist. Have you ever incorporated before ? If you rent out ebikes do you know that liability insurance for just one year will cost you between $1700 and $2000 ? Maybe build a website, and then also sell from your home ? If you look at the margins, and your landed cost if each ebike, and then add up how many you might sell per month, take a wild guess how many you need to sell just to cover rent, insurance, electric, waste disposal, CAM, Internet,phone, advertising, etc.
Then after all of that, how much is left to pay yourself ? Let's say you sell 10 ebikes a month, how much capital do you need to have sufficient cash flow, to order enough in, to get them quickly enough so people will buy from you ? Also what mix and models and sizes do you need to have ? If you don't have them on hand, and you go to order a few at a time, what happens if the oem is out of stock,and you have to wait 2 or 3 months ? Which ebike oems will be willing to sell to you if ou dont have a storefront ? What happens if you order ebikes, and they turn out to be models you can't sell ? Then are you going to cut your price and be able to take a loss ? What if you get stuck with 10 or more for months, and you have $15000 in capital tied up ? What are you going to do when Crazy Lenny in Madison undercuts your price so low, and sells to anyone anywhere, such that his sell price is below what you paid for the ebike ? And multiple of your ebikes ?
So your technical knowledge about ebikes might be deep, but does it come close to solving the above problems ? I haven't even scratched the surface of what it takes to run a business, let alone specifically the ebike business. Back in the year 2000, there were more than 6000 bike stores in the US. Now there are less than 3800. Those bike stores should be dying to take on ebikes, but they are not. Ask them why, and ask anyone who is in the business why ? Everyone has lots of conjectures, but these bike guys who are still in it, and likely have been doing it for at least 10 or 15 years, are going to tell you how bloody hard it is to run a small business. You are going to need employees, and then that's when your real headaches start. Brands like Pedego,will tell you about their margins being at 40%. Well that's until you find every Tom dick and Harry selling ebikes at margins of only 10 or 15%. And if it's Lenny, it's even lower. There is no bike shop on the planet who can operate on less than 32% margin for all of his product sales and with the average price of an ebike north of $2000, if you sell it for anything less than 32% margin, you are going to have to sell at least that much in accessories that have north of 50% margin to get your margins high enough to cover your cash flow needs on a monthly basis. Every old white man over 50 today, probably dreams of owning his own ebike store. They think it'll be fun and easy and cool. Because there isn't anyone around hardly, who has an ebike store, unless you are in the state of california, where 30% of the stores exist that are in the entire us. I can count at least 20 different similar fads and fantasies that people have had since the 1970's about opening this or that small business or shop. That doesn't include all of the franchises either, of which there have been thousands. More than 8 out of 10 small businesses fail in the first 2 years. 90% don't make it to the 5 year mark. The carnage will be far worse with ebikes. Crazy Lenny started with a large fortune before he created his little piece of 'retail nirvana' in madison wi. He tells tales of selling thousands. His fortune will get smaller over time. And he fail at ebikes just like his retail appliance business got clobbered. Of course it took some years for him to gut that, but it failed miserably and small retail businesses today fail faster than ever, thanks to amazon, Walmart, the Internet itself, Google, and China. If you are making high profit, and selling in any kind of volume, predators will sniff that out, and your margins will be up in smoke in no time. Good luck to you though.