A very difficult buying season is apparently ahead for new equipment, apparel and accessories companies still trying to establish their client bases in the golf industry.
According to last week’s GNN Poll, an overwhelming number of respondents aren’t too eager to try new names.
According to the poll, 46 per cent of respondents don’t plan to bring any new names into their shops, while another 38 per cent might bring in just one or two new lines for 2010.
Some are a little more open-minded about trying new things as eight per cent said they might bring in three to five new names and another eight per cent said they may bring in more than five.
So, it appears that most buyers plan to stick with their tried and true lines from over the years, but the question now is what can more established lines expect from their traditional customers for next year? That brings us to our next poll question.
There are indicators that consumer confidence is rising as people start to feel a little better about their job situations and the Canadian economy, which may lead to more discretionary spending in 2010.
The first question to ask yourself, as you prepare your 2010 budget, is do you believe that consumer confidence is rising?
While the stock market seems to be on an upward trend and housing prices are on the rebound in many parts of the country, will that benefit the people who specifically use your facility and will it lead to more spending on their part than in 2009?
The second question to ask is to what degree has consumer confidence risen, if at all? Although there is a little better feeling out there, I still believe there is still a recovery period ahead even if we have stopped the downward trend, so even if people are a bit more confident, spending will still be cautious.
Another question to ask is, if there is a little more spending than in 2009, to what degree? Will it apply to golf or will it go to more essential things such as home improvements that were delayed in the economic downturn over the last year?
If some of those extra dollars do go to golf, how will they be spent? Will they be spent on an extra two or three rounds per customer compared to 2009? Will pro shop sales go up and, if they do, will it be on essentials such as golf balls, or show in categories such as apparel?
There are plenty of questions to ask as we forecast what will happen in 2010. As it applies to the buying season, golf shops – be they green grass or off-course – are the consumers. Therefore, has your consumer confidence risen as you look ahead to 2010?
That’s the basis for the new GNN Poll now up on the home page. Do you expect to spend more, less or the same on inventory for your golf shop next year than you did in 2009?
As always, you can still make your opinion known on previous polls by going to our poll archives section or expand your thoughts on any subject inside the GNN Forum.