Industry News

Mobile phones could help fuel golf’s growth, report says

The use of mobile application (app) technology and the concepts of establishing an effective social media presence and embracing the digital economy, are fast becoming important considerations for the success of golf clubs and PGA professionals worldwide.

The latest data from Yahoo's ‘Flurry Analytics’ indicates 90% of consumers’ mobile time is spent using apps. This figure provides a key insight for golf clubs considering whether to develop mobile apps, or restrict themselves to website exposure and traditional marketing methods which are considered increasingly ineffective, noting the massive increase in smartphone usage, particularly with younger generations.

 Smartphone ownership rates have skyrocketed internationally since 2013. According to the Pew Research Center’s ‘Spring 2015 Global Attitudes Survey’, 72% of adults in the United States report owning a smartphone, each with an average ‘per capita’ income of $55,904 (the highest individual income of all 40 countries surveyed). This statistic alone reflects the very strong relationship between disposable income and smartphone ownership and the importance of mobile application usage to golf club business success. 

The study also reflected that in nearly every country surveyed, ‘Millennials’ (aged between 18 and 34) are much more likely to be smartphone users compared with those aged 35 and older. This statistic reflects the importance of offering technology and customer services in an appropriate format, to ensure engagement with future generations and the emerging demographic. 

A number of specialist golf-app development companies are exhibiting at this year’s PGA Show in Orlando, offering clubs and professionals alike the opportunity to keep pace with technological change and attract new generations to the game of golf.

Conrad Adams, Director of iCaddy Apps said, “In today’s competitive business environment, the majority of golf clubs now recognize the importance of having their own app. They also appreciate the benefits available to businesses that leverage mobile application technology. It is really just a question of how & when clubs will develop their own apps”. 

Mr Adams suggested that golf clubs and individual club professionals that offer a free mobile App to patrons, can boost customer service, generate new revenue streams, increase digital exposure and engage directly in ways never previously considered. 

An independent study commissioned by Google (conducted by Deloitte Access Economics) found that a third of all small business enterprises have virtually no digital engagement, but those that do are twice as likely to be growing or profitable. The report reflected that small moves into the digital arena could have enormous economic benefits, suggesting that moving up even one level of digital engagement can have a 20% impact on a small business’ revenue.

With all current indicators pointing in the same direction, it is possible that golf clubs and professionals that choose not to embrace the digital economy could be left behind. After all, it wasn’t all that long ago that golf clubs were considering whether they needed a website!

Mr Adams said, “Developing a club-specific app is a simple and cost-effective way to increase a club’s digital engagement and social media presence. As the saying goes, all businesses need to innovate or perish. It is really only a matter of time before all golf clubs will require their own App to remain competitive and function effectively in the new digital domain. To quote Yahoo, it’s an app world - the web just lives in it”.

 

Media Enquiries: Conrad Adams (Director)

Ph: +61 401 838 517

Email: conrad@icaddyapps.com  

2017 PGA Show Booth #3819