Saturday, February 21, 2015

The Woven

In the couple of weeks past, I had occasion to sit in on breakout sessions at the MOY conference, vendor presentations and many meetings with clubs where the subject of the viability of woven shirts comes up as an appropriate category for Golf Shop retail. All the major vendors that cater to the green grass channel have now added the category and of course all golf customers whether they are members of high-end clubs or playing municipals on the weekend wear them most of the time. A fairly traditional button down polo is what is usually implied when the invitation says casual business attire.

That being the case what is being merchandised regardless of the venue could be considered an impulse item in that the customer thinks to himself “I can always use another one of these”, and yet an oft heard comment from golf retailers is “well we tried them and didn’t do well."

So the key to selling this category is obviously to buy the right product and then to choose the proper mode of merchandising for your clientele, for the particular time of year and for the traffic pattern in your space. 

Giving your customer an opportunity to buy good quality brand name oxford basics is a good starting point when thinking of building a display – but just like selling white and khaki hats the display needs color to get the customer’s attention. The stripes, ginghams, and glen plaids are the interest arsenal and then you should consider the “gotta” have it because I can’t describe it piece where the only thing that comes to the mind of the shopper is “I don’t have one of those."

Table displays with bust forms layered with lifestyle pieces; vests, shirts and ties put together in gift boxes with tissue, and small tasteful logos on the left cuff are all important considerations. If the club logo doesn’t reduce well to a size appropriate for dress shirts use just the name of the club embroidered in script or the club font.

Make all of this effort very visible – perhaps a round table in front of the counter and don’t give up on it if it doesn’t take off immediately – it is a category worth showing dedication to and developing, it is a staple that your member/customer should be thinking of your shop as a resource for.