Traditionally, the month of September sits in 6th position for retail sales in the UK. It can be a month where retailers feel stuck between a rock and a hard place with the weather often dictating its success. 2021 Autumn Winter stock will be sitting on shelves and most of your orders for Spring Summer 2022 have been finalised so, what’s left to do? Is it time to sit back and hibernate? Give yourself a pat on the back after a busy season and relax?
We talk to TGI Partner Mark Boscott, PGA Head Professional and Tidmouth Garrison Golf Club
At this time of year, I’m forward planning and looking more towards 2022. We have 600 members, most of whom are very active and we see them several times a week. We make it our business to engage with our members to find out if they’re happy, if they might be thinking about new equipment or if they’re talking about what their friends are buying.
We have a noticeboard in the back. It’s like a “word on the street” area where we write down things we hear. I take all of this on board when I do my planning.
We keep our shop competitive. We price match and offer a service that other stores can’t. We make it easy for members to buy from us, so if they have £30-40 on their account, I know they’ll spend it with us.
We often look at the Customer section in XPOS and sort by Account Balance and if anyone is up to £200 or so, we try to encourage them to spend it before the end of the year. Whether they’re in debt or credit, we’ll work out what a member needs to be comfortable and happy.
Events, like the Ryder Cup, are more about member engagement than specific products. We’ll run a sweep stake and organise a competition with a Ryder Cup format. We might also use it as an opportunity to clear some of the high value stock with a raffle or sweep stake.
A few years ago, we sent some of our members to the Ryder Cup with TGI Golf Travel. They make those getaways easy for members, who then engage with the professional team about the trip. If I know they’re going away, it makes sense to sell them what they need. It’s a great service for the customer.
I’ve been an XPOS customer since the start. I did a degree in Business Management at Uni and understood the value of getting behind the numbers. When I was looking for an EPOS system, my research showed me that XPOS was the best.
We are realists. We know our customers are very knowledgeable and will look elsewhere for golf products. If they’re researching something, they’ll go online and look around when they’re at home. If they can see our stock in the Reserve & Collect area of our XPOS Caddie app, they can compare our prices and ask us to price match. We’ve had the app for a year and it works. It puts us in our customers’ minds and we’d rather they bought from us.
Right now, members are reading about stock issues in the industry and we want our customers to know that their XPOS Caddie app is a great way to be the first to reserve a new product and make sure they don’t miss out.
This month, I’ll also use the app to run some special previews of new stock. We’ll be selective and will drip feed new product to keep things looking fresh.
We recently added the ProAgenda.com online lesson booking system, which has been a game changer for me. Anything I can do to save time is great and this is an absolute ‘must’ for us now. It’s a great start to the day when I see that I’ve sold £90 of lessons and someone’s reserved a new golf bag – all before I’ve had my breakfast!
Phil Barnard's Tip of the Month
With the current stock issues across the industry, it’s more important than ever to make plans and pre-order enough stock to satisfy your needs. With some shaft manufacturers quoting 8-12 months lead time, the issues around stock availability are likely to carry on.
If you require any further expert retail advice contact your Retail Consultant.