PROOF THAT TODAY’S GOLFERS WILL PAY PREMIUM PRICES FOR QUICKER ROUNDS
Patience might be a virtue, but when it comes to field flow and pace of play on the course, it’s not a virtue that golfers are especially known for. Because of this, clubs straddle a fine line, and an error made in either direction can, ultimately, have far-reaching consequences.
Without the proper tools for complete oversight, golf course operators lose out on the opportunity to optimize the flow of the field, gain invaluable, real-time information, and provide an exceptional experience with an improved pace of play.
In a 2016 USGA survey, results showed that golfers under the age of 40 would pay 14.2% more for a better pace of play and shorter round times. With golfers between the ages of 40 and 59 willing to pay over 11.5%.
With this ever-increasing demand to fit in a round of golf in the morning, before having to be in the office, courses are realizing the need to better manage peak period demands by freeing up capacity.
To cater to those who place greater importance on pace of play, many daily fee and resort courses have started charging players a premium rate to guarantee that they won’t be held back by slower groups up ahead on the course.
Those golfers who play the course regularly, or those who like to play more dynamic golf without being held up, are happy to make and pay for this commitment.
Using Tagmarshal’s intelligent golf club management software, and the real-time data it provides to manage on-course field flow, operators can make use of variable goal times for different times of the day.
If courses can get player commitment to finish with a 3:50 round time, and then use the Tagmarshal course optimization system to ensure this happens, they can free up capacity for peak periods of the day.
The Ocean Course at Kiawah, the site of the 2021 and 2012 PGA Championships, 2007 Senior PGA Championship, and 1991 Ryder Cup, run their early rounds at a 4:15 target time, rather than the usual 4:45 target time.
Data shows that around 14% of groups play at 30 minutes or more over per round, which is due in large parts to delays in earlier groups. Encouraging players who enjoy a faster pace of play to tee off earlier sets a course up for smoother operations throughout the rest of the day.
The return on investment when it comes to an increased pace of play is obvious. Just two ‘Fast Track Golf’ mornings a week, charging $10 extra through the five tee times generates an extra $11 200 through a seven-month season.
At the same time, a well-balanced flow adds to player satisfaction, which leads to a greater chance of them returning. With the experience enhanced by great field flow, the value perception improves tremendously, especially for any groups that would otherwise be held up or delayed.
Ultimately, successful courses are coming to realize that for many of their golfers, the value lies not in how much the round costs. Rather, they want a course that guarantees a consistent pace of play, and one that shows a proactive approach to on-course flow.
Deliver on these fronts, and deliver consistently, and courses will find more and more golfers returning for another round.
Tagmarshal is a golf course intelligence and pace-of-play management solution that turns pace into an asset. The system uses small “tags” clipped onto golf bags or installed on carts which transmit geolocation data.
Industry-leading algorithms identify risk groups with accurate, objective support to alleviate pace challenges before they arise. Public, private and resort courses using Tagmarshal realize substantial returns on investments through improved on-course experiences achieved with less staff as well as increases in daily rounds.
Impactful and easy-to-use data analytics, weather data integration and geo-fencing complete the offering.