The retail sales numbers have now been released for durables, clubs and distance devices for July 2022. Total golf equipment sales were less than 1% below July 2021 and 51% ahead of pre-pandemic 2019 levels
Total July 2022 US Equipment Market (On-Off Course)
On-Off Course July ’22 vs ’21: Dollars -0.9%
On-Off Course July ’22 vs ’19: Dollars +51.0%
On-Off Course YTD ’22 vs ’21: Dollars -4.7%
On-Off Course YTD ’22 vs ’19: Dollars +40.3%
On a Year-to-Date basis, 2022 is down 4.7% vs. ’21
Golf balls were the big winner in consumables for the month, up 12%, benefitting from some good weather and improved availability of product. While wedges led the durables side of the business, also improving by close to 12%, riding the wave of new products.
Woods, which are one of the largest product categories, tumbled by 13% for the month, however sales remain 35% ahead of 2019 levels.
March saw the continuation of a cold, wet Spring across our northern markets, which has not helped equipment sales. An increase in precipitation and lower temperatures created touch circumstances, limited play and likely dampened demand for equipment.
US March 2022 Total Golf Equipment Sales
- On-Off Course March ’22 vs. ’21: Dollars -8.4%
- On-Off Course March ’22 YTD vs. ’21 YTD: -1.7%
Notably, equipment sales for the month of March were down 8.4% vs. same month 2021, with every category falling except for gloves.
It’s worth noting that March of 2021 was the largest March in history for golf equipment sales, surpassing the previous largest March (2018) by 40%. While March 2022 saw a decrease in sales over 8% vs. last year, they remain 34% ahead of 2019, and this March was the second largest March in history.
On the data from equipment sales last month, Golf Datatech Co-Founder John Kryznowek commented, “March of 2022 can be viewed as either a “glass half full” or as a “glass half empty”. For the optimist, this March is the second highest March in history and is well ahead of pre-pandemic levels, even though in some product categories inventories remain tight. Overall, trade inventories of equipment are moving toward normalization.
“For the pessimist, the 8% decline is the most significant slowdown since the big drops in March thru May of 2020 when much of retail world was shut down and might suggest the golf equipment business is stabilizing or about to decline”.
Retail sell thru data for apparel is published today with total Apparel sales for the month of February through the On/Off Course channels up +9.0% and +3.3% YTD
Seven out of eight categories were up for the month, with only Outerwear declining. The fastest growing category was Men’s Bottoms, which included pants and shorts, +16.7%.
Average Selling Prices (ASP’s) rose for every product category, some double digits, as inflationary pressures build and impact every step of the manufacturing and distribution process
On the latest results, GDT co-founder John Krzynowek said, “Golf apparel is not exempt from feeling the pinch from higher costs, and then passing those costs on to the golfer. Manufacturing apparel is facing increased labor and material costs, along with the expense of shipping, which has caused retail prices to rise significantly over the past two years. Ultimately these higher retail prices are going to curtail consumer demand and cause an overall slowdown in sell through.”
After a slow start in 2021, retail sell thru of golf apparel has been on a tear for the rest of the year. All 7 categories of golf apparel have enjoyed significant expansion vs. 2020, led by the largest product category, men’s shirts, up 44%.
On a YTD basis, total golf apparel sales are now at an all-time high thru the first 10 months of the year, 4% above 2017, which was the prior highest sales thru October.
Golf Datatech’s co-founder, John Kryznowek commented, “After a rough 2020 due to the pandemic’s negative impact on sales, the golf apparel business bounced back with strong consumer demand driving On/Off Course retail to all-time highs this year. All indications suggest there will be ongoing issues this fall into the winter and possibly even into next spring with sourcing for some products, but clearly golfers continue to purchase new golf apparel at astonishing rates.”
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