Monday, April 30, 2007

Motostrano: A Word From the President


A Word From the President

What makes Motostrano different than other moto stores?

When I started Motostrano back in 2002, one of the main motivating factors (besides actually creating a job for myself) was that I didn't like the types of moto retail companies I had in my surrounding home area. Poor service, poor attitude, poor selection, poor product. Being heavily involved in e-commerce and online marketing at the time, I also looked online for sources of parts and gear that suited my needs and I didn't find much there either. I'm primarily a street rider and I personally gravitate to things that are a little more on the esoteric side of life, you might say. The stuff in the bigger e-tailers catalogs out there just didn't fit the bill. I knew that there would be a collection of manufacturers out there that produced high quality unique products for bike and for rider- so why not start with this idea and see where it lands?

So, with my background in customer service and business management and marketing, I decided to make a local company that offered local riders a great shop- while very unique - with good products backed by a really good attitude from the employees that served up the company to customers. At the same time, this company would have a killer web site, with online shopping, a back end system to handle the fulfillment of orders and sales people who rode what they sold.

So, with a barebones web site, I set out to accomplish the kind of company I personally would want to shop with.

At Motostrano we try to focus.... well- that's the first thing we try to do: FOCUS. You won't find everything at Motostrano, by design- not in our retail outlet, nor our online store. We try not to sell the basic garbage you can get at your neighborhood Cyclegear- staffed by half-wit kids who don't know what a Maico is. Our catalog is cherry picked to carry specific products that are generally not found in your local store. And if they are found in your local store, then we try to do a better job of carrying them.

Our retail outlet, which is really a kind of cost-co shopping experience- perhaps only worse- because we rarely stick a price tag on anything- is FILLED with more product than you've ever seen in any moto store. Unfortunately we just don't have the time to price stuff in our store due to price fluctuations and fast moving inventory. We'll get there some day, but not yet. In the meantime, not only do we likely actually have the item you want in stock for you to take home that day, every customer who pushes our door open can expect hands on customer service from some one who actually rides a motorcycle and who quite willingly will spend an hour or two with them, going over in great detail the products that interest them. Most of the time, our staff uses the same product, has even crash tested it, or tested it at the race track, if not on the street.

As with our retail store, our web catalog is very focused. In the age of the Internet- it's real easy for companies to upload entire databases of products and images fresh from a distributor's product CD and slap them on a web site, tricking you, the customer, into thinking the company on the other end is gynormous, with an equally gynormous inventory, while in all likely hood they're a rinky dink shop with a single jacket hanging on the wall as their inventory. Motostrano tries really hard to focus on just a few sectors of the industry and within that just a few brands and a few product lines. This allows us to stock it for you, as well as to know it for you.

If you call or email us about a product, we can go over to our inventory, pick it up, try it on and tell you about it. We can also usually get it out the same day. Those other companies that have every brand and every item from the major distributors on their web site (and none of it in their warehouse) rely on "just in time" shipments for just about every order. 75% of our orders are shipped from in stock inventory that we keep on hand.

A big focus of ours has no comparison to anything else we do. Our focus on supermoto started 4 years ago when Supermoto in the USA was small time. I remember going to the first AMA pro supermoto race at Laguna Seca at the time and Motostrano was already selling aftermarket parts, as well as complete supermoto bikes, race ready. We were dealing with top European pro racers and we subsequently led the way in supermoto parts and accessories in the USA. It is to the point now that Supermoto is one of the core elements of our business and one we hope we are identified with by the consumer at large. It's our passion and we like it.

Motostrano staff ride and race supermoto bikes. We sponsor pro and am racers. We attend race events and sponsor local and pro events. We build wheels in-house and we carry in stock a huge array of supermoto parts.

That, in a few paragraphs, is what I think Motostrano is about and what makes us different.

Joe Witherspoon, President Motostrano LLC.

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