A weekend bike ride at Fort Stevens over the last weekend revived my need to ride around for fun and for fitness.
Once an everyday cyclist as a youngster, I somehow stopped abruptly and forgot all about joys of riding. Oh, it was probably around the time when I got my driver’s license.
This past weekend ride made me realize that I know next to nothing about cycling. So, as I searched for a ride, I had a first objective: to learn what I could about cycling in order to purchase a bike that fits my needs.
My objective would help me ride and get further along the path toward the ultimate goal:
...to compete in a duathalon with my younger brother at some point in the future.
This led to a bit of research across a ton of bike content and speaking with people to get their opinions on casual and performance cycling. Locally, I got some Portland flavor on the topic from the 21st Avenue Bicycles’ crew. As I shopped for a bike that suited me, it led me to Trek’s site which is quite the ride for first-time or frequent visitors.
Content beautifully displayed by cycling types and topics.
Props to the Trek content strategy crew for handling metadata like champs. Instead of beating you over the head with model numbers and options, the web content separates cycle types by what kind of ride you’re looking for.
From commuting, to racing, to cyclocross and more, your cycling need will be on that list. Once you click on that page, the content ensures that you know exactly what you’re looking at with a bit of introductory copy before bike models are shown.
Each model is tagged with more than one cycling type. This way, if a visitor is not sure of what kind of cyclist they are, overlapping bike archetypes will ensure that they eventually find a model that suits them.
You don’t have to be in the bike market to enjoy the Trek site either. Their community page is robust, including bike-related PR, blogs, and news about upcoming events and team details.
I'd love to see the education component be taken to the next step.
One of my favorite sources of bike knowledge was the REI Expert Advice cycling page. I’m sure a forum or blog out there probably has much more specialized information on cycling, but REI’s collection of solid surface-level coverage on a single page felt like an impressive start.
Trek could take a page out of REI’s book and take more ownership of educating riders of all experience levels. As I mentioned earlier, Trek does a great job of aggregating cycling news and headlines for its visitors. While this does add some value to the user experience, there’s a little more depth in the user relationship that can be established with some more educational content.
While Trek can go deeper with educating wanna-be and current cyclists, they do provide a great range of content to let the community know that they are relevant to cycling other than with their hardcore equipment, gear, and sponsorships.