Golf innovators are increasingly finding novel ways of bringing in and engaging shoppers in brick and mortar retail. Golf stores across the country are updating their retail operations, bringing in golf simulations, putting greens, and even backyard golf courses to draw shoppers and provide experiences that online retailers can’t. In-store technology, paired with Instagram-friendly store design, are bringing golf retail to the forefront of marketing innovation.
Here are some of the best innovations in golf retail right now:
PGA Tour Superstore: with over 30 locations across the country and 23% sales growth in the last year, the PGA Tour Superstore has demonstrated the success of innovative in-store retail. Stores boast hitting bays, golf simulations, and even lessons, and provide services including fitting and gripping clubs. The opportunity to test products before purchasing, advice and services from knowledgeable staff, and a golf playground to use products after purchase can’t be beat by online retail. It’s a surefire way to attract avid golfers who otherwise shop online, and it works--while brick-and-mortar sports retail has seen a sharp decline in the last few years, PGA Tour Superstore has tripled its store count and intends to reach 50 stores by 2020.
Malbon Golf: Nestled on Los Angeles’s stylish Fairfax Avenue, Malbon Golf is bringing the game to California’s hippest residents. Founded in 2017 by Erica and Joseph Malbon, she a designer and he the founder of street-style magazine and creative agency Frank151, the Malbon Golf store fuses old-school game with new-school design. The store features sleek white walls, mirrored shelves, and carefully-curated displays that can be found scattered across Instagram with the hashtag #malbongolf, sometimes under the face of a celebrity like Justin Bieber or Steph Curry. A putting-range stretches across the middle of the concrete floor, past chic succulents and a glassed-in watch display. An open doorway leads to a so-called Swing Studio, where golfers can take lessons or play an 18-hole game. Their back patio looks out on their “Celebrity Green,” a curated green which has seen the likes of Bieber and Curry as well as Travis Scott, Schoolboy Q, and others of the Los Angeles fashion set. Malbon’s sense of cool, paired with in-store toys and visual treats, brings golf to the Instagram generation--and into its supremely chic storefront.