Your Online Store

Yes. Golf Courses Need One!

Let me paint you a picture.

It’s the end March.  My golf course is just coming out of winter.  We haven’t made much money in the last three months (yay for northern states!) and my property taxes are due.  No.  Not property taxes to the tune of $5,000.  We’re talking PROPERTY TAXES to the tune of $60,000+.  In other words, some serious cash.

I’ll be honest with you.  For some reason, owning a golf course gives the public perception that you pretty much have more money than you know what to do with yourself.  I think people have always assumed that we stuff our mattresses with all of our leftover cash.

That, sadly, is not the case.  I’m ok with that since I, personally, think that sleeping on a wad of cash sounds incredibly uncomfortable.

Back to why you need an Online Shop…

My family and I often need to get creative at this time of the year.  The worst years are the ones where we still have snow on the ground in March.  I lose sleep and worry which doesn’t do me much good.  I finally found something that can take away that worry!

Enter an online store.

In this scenario, it’s spring. You know who else is excited to play golf in the spring?  Golfers!

After having some discussion with my family aka Board of Directors, I decided to offer bundle packages in my online store.  Once I had my store set up, I emailed out my list the specials that I was running online, plus I ran a few Facebook Ads.  When all was said and done, my online sales paid for my spring property tax payment.  Cue ability to easily sleep.

Needless to say, this made me completely change what I offer inside of my online store.

Golf courses are typically pretty boring and fight against what works for other businesses in their marketing efforts.  I don’t know why this is the case, but it is definitely something that I have noticed over the years.  It seems operators are always asking, “But how do I implement that idea in golf?”

Let me break it down for you!


If you aren’t selling these items in your online shop, then you’re missing out on repeatable and dependable revenue!

  1.  Golf Packages
    • Bachelor Parties
    • Grouped Packages that include Golf, Cart, Driving Range & Lunch
    • Birthday Parties
    • Neighborhood Packages
  2. Driving Range Passes
    • Sell bucket discounts
    • Create a package that includes a club
  3. Season Passes/Membership
    • Have a description of your Membership or Season Pass
    • Cart Passes
    • Have online only specials
  4. Green Fees
    • Provide discounted punch cards
    • Sell Twilight Rates that can be redeemed during off twilight times
  5. Lessons
    • Group packages
    • Provide discounts and individual options
  6. Virtual Lessons
    • Create video on good golf practices and sell the virtual instructor
  7. Gift Cards
    • This is a no brainer!
  8. Deposits
    • Include your wedding, event, or golf outing deposits
  9. Golf Outing Packages
    • Create pre-sold packages for smaller businesses with fewer than 20 golfers.
    • Corporate events
    • Include business conference with golf
  10. Special Events
    • Create Birthday Party Packages
    • Provide the option to pay early on Wedding Reception
    • Surprise Party with food, golf and driving range

Back To My Story

Remember when I was talking about my crisis.  I decided to sell a Loaded Foresomes on my website.  These were golf packages that included green fees, carts, lunch and driving range for the whole foursome.  Over one weekend, I managed to sell enough to cover my property taxes!  Yes.  That’s several thousand.

I basically walked around with a little light bulb above my head.  I realized something!  I had finally figured out a way to have a repeatable and predictable income!  Now, I just had to create more products to put in my online store!

The best part is that the golfers who made online sales spent an average of $50 more than my daily fee golfers when they came to redeem their voucher.  Since their golf was already paid in advance, they had a mentality that it was free, so they spent more in food and drinks.

You’re sitting there thinking, There’s No Way I Can Do That!  

Yes.  You can!

Picture my little experiment as though it’s Groupon.  Groupon doesn’t really have anything to sell.  They’re selling your business.  Groupon’s success is on the back of your reputation.  Not to mention, Groupon has all that clever fine print that you are required to honor their little coupon for FIVE YEARS BEYOND THE EXPIRATION DATE!  What???

I’ll admit it.  I’ll hang my head and say it, “I used Groupon.”  I need to join an anonymous club.  It only took me one time to realize what a complete joke this method of advertising is for me and most businesses.  They were keeping 50% of my and your hard work!

My online store is selling precisely what Groupon would sell.  This time, I was keeping ALL OF THE MONEY.

Just think about it.  You have lots of things you can sell in an online shop!  You operate a golf course!!!  You’re the one in control of your destiny!

Get Your Rear in Gear!

That’s right, friend.  It’s time for you to go update your online golf shop.  Put some products in there that golfers actually want to purchase!

Let me grab your hand and walk you through!

12 Steps to a New Online Golf Shop

  1. Pick three ideas from my suggestions that you think will work well in your online golf shop.
  2. Create a pdf that your golfer will download in order to redeem the purchase. (Download my Toolbox if you don’t know how)
  3. Grab the plug in for your website that makes your pdf secure.
  4. Create a description of the product for your website.
  5. Design a thumbnail image for your Online Shop.  (Download my Toolbox if you don’t know how)
  6. Write an email that your customer will receive when they make this purchase – don’t forget the link to book a tee time and instructions on how to redeem.
  7. Either attach the pdf to that email or provide the link to the pdf in that email.
  8. Upload the product description into your Online Shop.
  9. Upload the thumbnail of the product to your Online Shop.
  10. Train staff on how to look up online purchases.
  11. Attach a link to your new online shop in the next newsletter you write.
  12. Wake up to sales that were made while you were sleeping!

Ok.  So maybe it isn’t as easy as those 12 Steps, just be patient as I’m getting ready to create a video that walks you through those steps or you might consider joining the Masters Club!  In the Masters Club, I give tech tips each month to help you navigate the tech that is involved in this process.

What are you planning to include in your shop?  Tell us in the comments!