Widespread global interest in the United States golf industry has the potential to not only boost future rounds and the bottom line, it may save some failing courses from extinction. Foreign buyers, especially Asian buyers are taking advantage of some deeply discounted golf properties as many golf courses in the U.S. struggle to hang on. A period of expansion and overbuilding (as it turns out) followed by a weak economy put a huge burden on the U.S. golf market in general. Lackluster growth in homegrown play has added insult to injury.
The emerging Asian golf market coupled with continued growth in Europe is proving to create more interest in American golf as well. The number and variety of U.S. golf courses in and around plentiful resort destinations makes play from international travelers more attractive as the world continues to gradually recover from the great recession.
Which courses are likely to benefit first and the most? Most assuredly those who are first to adopt digital forms of marketing their courses. Finding new business, or better said “being found by new business”, is the key to success. Worn out, and over-fished email databases will not reach new people and will continue to decline in effectiveness leaving those who fail to plan for the future in the dark when it comes to being found by today’s, and most assuredly tomorrow’s, search-savvy golf shoppers. For all the reasons mentioned in the opening of this article, the golf industry is behind in digital technology. Many have not updated and/or upgraded their website platform(s) in several years, and search engine efficiency has changed by leaps and bounds in the past 3 years.
Robust growth in the use of smart devices of all types has created urgency in all markets for mobile responsive websites. Golf courses who opt in early for this new technology along with streamlined site organization will see immediate benefits. Not just golfers, but all web users continue to suffer from waning attention spans with each new advance in technology. Information has to be delivered simply, quickly, and completely. Engagement is already (almost) completely voluntary, in that we all know how to find the information we want and need without it being emailed, advertised, and sensationalized.
When comparing potential for improvement from one industry to another, the golf industry is clearly out front. The product contains all the right “natural” elements. Beauty, peacefulness, comradery, and challenge can once again offset time, difficulty, and expense. No other sport allows its participants to play the same equipment and venues of the professionals. When the balance of supply and demand are once again in line, golf could experience another major surge in growth. The question…who will survive the interim?
As global interest increases, the United States golf industry has to (across the board) make the adjustments necessary to adopt digital technologies and search marketing strategies. To keep pace with today’s and tomorrow’s hi-tech, search savvy shoppers, being found on the web is of huge importance. Don’t be left in the dark, take advantage of our offer for free consultation HERE.