UK Golf Retail: Market Update April 2019

Right now, golf retailers are slap bang in the middle of the season. It’s one of the busiest times of year for pro shops, and all too easy to lose track of how the market, and your business, is performing.  The April retail statistics were recently released, so let’s stand back to look at the picture so far, .

2019: the story so far

By all accounts, it’s been a good start for both golf retail, and golf, in general. Both Winter and Spring were very kind, (no snow), allowing lots of play in relatively warm, and dry, conditions.

People out on the course have been spending money, while Tour Professionals have been generating a good deal of media interest. Tiger Woods winning his first Major in 11 years was, perhaps, one of the greatest comeback stories ever. Everyone seemed to be talking about it: even my football-obsessed builder!

Rory McIlroy returned to his winning-ways: taking the unofficial 5th Major at the Players Championship. While Brooks Koepka retained his PGA Championship title, in dominant style, with an imperious win. All great stories from interesting players, capturing a lot of screen time and news updates.

Celebrating

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Loyalty schemes: What’s the point?

Many retailers offer a loyalty card to customers to keep them coming back to the shop. Loyalty schemes can help give your customers an emotional connection with your brand with every transaction: deepening loyalty, and encouraging them to spend more.  However, it’s essential to choose a program that will resonate with your customer base, or your business could miss out.

Loyal customers spend more money in shops than new ones.  Plain and simple.  A recent study by Harvard Business School found that a customer’s 6th purchase was, on average, 40% larger than his, or her, first: with the 8th being 80% more. Loyalty pays.

Loyal customers don’t just help your business because they spend more, however. According to Bain and Co., a 5% increase in customer retention can increase a company’s profitability by 75%. And, if those numbers don’t make you sit up and listen,  a Gartner Groups study showed that 80% of a company’s future revenue will come from

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Should I cancel all my pre orders?

It’s been brought to my attention that there is some confusion over pre orders and what should people do with them. So, following a few conversations about planning, pre orders and agile stocking I thought I should put some thoughts down to point people in the right direction.

I am often asked by golf Pros if they should cancel all their pre orders.  The answer is a definite “NO”. Well, maybe…

The reality is that the answer has to be specific to your situation and your current plan. Let’s run through some scenarios to see what might be appropriate for you.

In general, you should not just cancel all your pre orders. You’ll end up with nothing to sell. The only reason to cancel all pre orders is if you are about to go bankrupt. There is no point is wasting your suppliers time and money and getting yourself further in to Continue reading “Should I cancel all my pre orders?”

What Can We Expect in 2019?

If I had a crystal ball, I’d have won the lottery a few times and would be sitting on my own island trying to work out how to take out Amazon. However, since I now have you on to my blog page, the least I can do is give you a few thoughts on what could happen in the world of golf retail in 2019.

Well, 2018 will have to go down as a pretty interesting year. England did well in a football tournament; Europe thrashed the US in the Ryder cup; the Beast from the East caused total havoc, only to be followed by a heatwave that got us all in a sweat. Then the political system imploded, as the Parties forgot about voters amidst the Brexit maelstrom: leaving the general public in a spin, and delivering the worst Christmas sales for 10 years.

So, what does any of this mean for 2019 and what can we expect for the golf industry in the New Year?

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Get Set for 2019

With the build-up to Christmas well and truly underway, most retailers are trying to maximise their sales and take advantage of all the festive fervour. I’ve seen some great promotional efforts in golf clubs around the country. It’s amazing who has a special Christmas suit!!

While most people won’t start thinking about 2019 until long after the turkey has been eaten, there’s no harm inputting some thoughts together in preparation – especially as we all want next year to be “the best one ever”. Again.

Principle Planning

The main area for consideration here is planning. In Crossover’s recent Pro Shop Retail  Tips advice article, we brought up, what is, for many, the dreaded topic of budgeting.  This may not be the most popular area of business, but it really is a key part to running your store. I’d encourage all business owners to spend a few hours over the coming weeks to make sure they have all their numbers together. If you want to have a really Continue reading “Get Set for 2019”

When a Brand goes Direct to your Customer

Thanks to Head PGA Pro Michael McCrudden from Roe Park Resort in Northern Ireland, for this Tweet:

“Hi Phil, any chance of a blog post on how to deal with suppliers going direct to consumer and cutting out/by-passing bricks and mortar retailers like the green grass PGA Pro?”

This is a great question, and one that seems to be a really hot topic at the moment. Whilst I can’t provide you with a silver bullet, I might be able to provide some insight in to why brands are doing it, why consumers like it, and how retailers can respond.

So, here goes!!

Why Do Brands Go Direct?

It’s only since we have moved in to the digital age that brands have been able to interact directly with the consumer. In the past, manufacturers relied on distributors selling Continue reading “When a Brand goes Direct to your Customer”

UK Golf Retail: September 2018 Update

For most, the overriding memory of September will be the barn-storming Ryder cup where Europe produced an overwhelming, if unexpected, victory. Some outstanding performances from both the old guard and the rookies. It’s always good entertainment when the postman delivers!

the postman delivers

When most of the golfing community was still pumped with positive energy, some of the air was let out of the tyres by the news that American Golf – Europe’s largest specialist golf retailer – was up for sale under, what seemed to be, negative circumstances. More about this next month, but for now, let’s hope the new arrangements allow AG to be successful, and the industry continues to grow.

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