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If your wondering how to increase tee time bookings, sell more more pro shop products and branded merchandise, increase events and corporate outings at your golf course or country club, this article is for you.
If you have worked with us, you know we are avid golfers. We are on the course at least once a week and take lunches to head to a driving range. With that said, we are also web designers and marketers who love building great experiences that add value to businesses – and golf course web design and marketing is no different.
Each week we search for new courses to play, and to be honest get frustrated with many of the golf course websites we find. They are lacking information, are hard to navigate, don’t look great on mobile devices, and lack the visual component that we (and other golfers) use to determine if we want to play the course.
With that said, below you will find a list of elements that every golf course website design should include to help increase tee times and event bookings, as well as pro shop sales.
Golf Course Web Design Essentials
A Design That Represents Your Course
Half of users who will visit your website will form an opinion about your golf course just by how your website looks and functions. Using cheap golf course templates, the cheapest web designers you can find, and having a poorly designed website is not longer acceptable if you want to grow your sales, memberships, and increase tee time bookings.
You work hard to make your course beautiful for the golfers who will play it, and having a beautiful website that mirrors your course experience is key.
Course News and Blog Section
There are many different topics and questions that golfers search for within Google. Having a blog with content that addresses these topics is a great marketing strategy for your golf course. It helps build your golf brand, helps your website rank within Google, and positions your golf pros and PGA professionals as the best in the business.
SEO Marketing Tip For Golf Courses: Make sure you do keyword research to find valuable topics, and optimize your articles (and website) to target local topics that golfers in your area will be searching for.
Some golf course content ideas include:
- Training Videos By Your Golf Pro
- Weighing in on PGA Events
- Spotlighting Members or Golfers
- News About The Course
Professional and User Photos of the Course
This is one of the key components that the golfers we’ve talked to look for on a website when determining if they want to play a course. These course photos should include professional photos as well as pictures that are taken by golfers during their round or event at your course.
Web Design Tip For Golf Courses: Have golfers submit photos for a chance to win a free round, and build a page on your website specifically for their photos.
Here are more tips for golf course photography.
Golf Course Practice Facilities
When searching for golf courses to play, we find that most don’t outline and showcase their practice facilities – which is frustrating. In most cases we have to call them to find out if they have a driving range or just a netted driving area, and putting and chipping greens.
Tee Time Booking Engine
This is actually one of the better things we have seen that most golf course websites have built in. There are new booking engines that make it easy to book through a course’s website and are easy to integrate during your website design.
If you offer additional event types at your course, such as weddings, it is important to have a section dedicated to this service. You need to include information about your facility that those who are planning a wedding would need to know, as well as past events and photos to showcase your facilities expertise in providing a perfect day for the newlyweds.
Corporate Golf Outing Calendar
Having an events calendar that outlines tournaments and corporate outings at your course helps your golfers as well as provides opportunities for marketing. For example:
- Having an event calendar will help potential golfers stay informed about the best time to book tee times, as to not be held up by events.
- Having a page specifically for each event gives you a location on your website to showcase photos, videos, and user generated content from the people who attended the event.
Social Media Tip: This page will also get shared on Facebook and Instagram profiles by the golfers at the event and the company putting on the event – giving your course free event advertising.
Pro Shop (eCommerce) Section
This is one of the biggest opportunities for golf courses to add incremental revenue to their bottom line. We have only seen one or two course websites that included a eCommerce element for their pro shop.
Even if you don’t have a wide range of products in your pro shop, you should at least give visitors a place to purchase your course-branded golf clothing and products.
Web Design Tip For Golf Courses: If your building your course’s website in WordPress, integrating shopping carts such as WooCommerce is quick and easy.
Course Information and Conditions
You need to set the expectation for golfers when they play your course. I can’t tell you how many times we’ve arrived at a course, teed off at the first hole, only to find bunkers were being redone, greens were being aerated, or other construction was going on.
Web Design Tip For Golf Courses: Remember golfers talk and spread the word about their experience at your course. Make sure you are setting the correct exceptions by including course information and conditions on your website.
Golfers are notorious for bragging to their friends about a great hole, perfect shot, or experience they had while at a course. Having a section on your website where users can submit reviews, brag, or provide feedback about your course, is a great way to amplify the natural tendency for golfers to talk about your course.
Social Media Tip For Golf Courses: Use negative feedback to help improve your course conditions or customer service. Then close the loop with the person who left the negative feedback, by reaching out to them and inviting them back to the course.
As you have probably realized from reading this article, there is more to golf course web design and marketing than just having a basic website – much like designing a golf course is more than just having a tee box, faraway, and green. If your golf course website doesn’t include all these features, please give us a call and we’d be happy to design a website for your course that increases tee time bookings and represents your course.