I'm no businessman at all, but....
I figure shops should get tyres where ever they can, then sell them for prices that are competitive with online dealers, even if it's just to get people like me going back to bike shops semi-regularly. I do my own mechanical work, so i pretty much never go to shops any more; the only time I do is very rarely to get little stuff like cables or the odd seat bolt. I'd happily pay a little more locally, and then they've got me back in the shop every couple of thousand kms, and who knows what I else I might end up buying If I keep seeing the same sexy bike over and over?
And on warranty: who cares about a warranty for cheap stuff like tyres, or cheap lights or speedometers, for that matter?
I realise that distributors get shitty with shops for bypassing them, and there's a chance they could get blacklisted (or so the stories go), but I figure something's gotta change.
Incidentally, I'm in Melbourne, and Aussies were reamed on bike tyres for years ($110 for a Pro Race 3, anyone? Not anymore, thank god); and having said all the above, some shops do occasionally sell pairs for decent tyres for good prices, like, Pro3s or 4000Ss for 70 or 80 bucks. However, this isn't common enough for me, and I haven't got time to shop around, just to "be nice" to the local industry, just on tyres. Also, there are some local Ebay dealers that will sell tyres cheaply, but it's too easy to do a bulk UK order with my friends
Is this all too simple?
And while I'm ranting: the bloody local shop guys who piss and moan coz I dare
to shop around to save money! Fark me! As if they don't do exactly the same thing when they
buy something else! Do they piss away an extra 100 bucks on a set of car tyres, just coz the dealer promise good service? Yeah, right