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Should Fittings be Free?


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On 11/4/2021 at 7:05 PM, RickyBobby_PR said:

Don’t think this is true. theres new shafts and also advances that are made in designs that can potentially offer gains in distance and/or dispersion thru face design and head design. While it’s only potential I don’t think the fitter would discourage someone from coming in to see if they can find something better and if they are a quality fitter they will be honest with the client to let them know that there isn’t anything being gained and to keep what they have. 

Right, you are kind of touching on my point ( probably could have been clearer on my end) that the fitter is focusing on improvement and finding the best combination for a person.  Sometimes it's their current combo, sometimes it's not. My point is that a good fitter wants to find you whatever you hit best, however some fitters will absolutely push a person into something new regardless of if it performs better. I can only really speak for myself but I have experienced free fittings push for sales while paid fittings are more concerned with what works best for you and are perfectly ok with you walking away with nothing.  

I don't think fitting people for free based on the motivation of increasing store sales ( as adam was pushing) is really a good thing. 

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1 hour ago, Flip4000 said:

Right, you are kind of touching on my point ( probably could have been clearer on my end) that the fitter is focusing on improvement and finding the best combination for a person.  Sometimes it's their current combo, sometimes it's not. My point is that a good fitter wants to find you whatever you hit best, however some fitters will absolutely push a person into something new regardless of if it performs better. I can only really speak for myself but I have experienced free fittings push for sales while paid fittings are more concerned with what works best for you and are perfectly ok with you walking away with nothing.  

I don't think fitting people for free based on the motivation of increasing store sales ( as adam was pushing) is really a good thing. 

I’ve seen guys gain 15 yards with driver from a free demo day fitting where the fitter spent 30 mins going thru different heads and lofts then a couple more shafts once he had the right head. The guy didn’t buy. Free fittings that show improvement don’t guarantee sales even with a 10% discount that day.

We agree on your take about fitters and finding the right fit

 

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On 11/5/2021 at 6:01 PM, FXsr76 said:

Given the expense incurred in overhead, equipment, salaries for the "expert" fitters, I think the TXGs, the Club Champions, the True Specs, the Cool Stix, etc. are entitled to charge for their fitting service. IMO, what's missing in the contractual framework is a written quality control process on the fitting to include a checklist and screenshots of the basis for the club selection. This will spotlight weak fitters, missing parts of the process like gapping and clear remedies for fixing any problem. Also, there should be a great deal more transparency in the actual costs of building the club or the set recommended.

 

 

I've sold in the corporate world for a long time. Good luck with getting transparency in the cost model. Not likely to happen often.

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I did not listen to the podcast but to answer the question on whether fittings should be free…the answer is it depends. As a part time fitter, I’ve done hundreds of fittings at private clubs where there is no cost to the members. Although there’s no guarantee of sales, It’s rare we don’t sell thousands of dollars in equipment and it benefits the host club as all sales go through their account. Often times the pro-shop will offer a discount if purchases are made on those days. 
 

Fittings done at a Truespec, Club Champion, etc…you’re paying for a fitting from a trained fitter who typically knows what they’re talking about. You’re paying someone for their expertise. If someone has an issue paying for a fitting, these places are not for them. I would recommend they going to a big box store that carries inventory. They can hit the newest product in more of a demo day setting, where they can get help from a staff member who may or may not know what they’re talking about. If you’re going to go that route, you usually can make an appointment to get fitted for a fee $30-$100 depending on where you go and often they will give you 30-45 day To put that towards a purchase. 
 

If this is a yes or no question, my answer would be no…fittings should not be free. That’s what demo days are for. 

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The TXG video from today addressing free fittings was very well done.  I wish the original NPG episode would have gotten more in depth to touch on the items TXG brought up instead of Adam just saying that he'd done it before and free fittings "pay for themselves".  As I mentioned before, I think Adam may have a point for certain business models, but I'd like to have seen him address the specific points TXG makes instead of just shouting Ryan down saying "it works".

 

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First NPG I haven’t been able to finish. Yes some fittings should be free, but to say all should be free is completely ludicrous. I’m going to a high end fitter for their experience, the after market shaft options and quality of build. I don’t believe that’s feasible in a “free” scenario.

Let’s use Adams logic for golf courses…. None should be private and all would make more money because more rounds would be played. That’s a world I don’t want to live in.

Edited by Ereim
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This is pretty silly. There are no free fittings, the cost has to land somewhere. Your actual choices are:

1) Pay for a fitting if you want it, and we all pay the same today prices for off the rack or custom clubs. The current model and pricing.

2) "Free fittings", and we pay the same higher prices for off the rack or custom clubs - as the labor and equipment costs of fittings will be buried in the cost of clubs. And we all pay for fittings whether we get them or not. The prices for clubs will go up (margins won't go down), the question is only by how much?

The corollary question is will increased club sales (volume) reduce the cost hit of fittings? But they'll never be free...

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On 11/8/2021 at 6:36 PM, Ed Young said:

You’re paying someone for their expertise.

This is where I believe most folks are misinformed.  The fitters are not recalling from memory, the metrics gathered from a few driver and iron swings is matched up with a database of profiled shafts that fit within those metrics. The 'art' comes from determining if someone should be, for irons, hard or soft stepped, or fit into a 370 shaft where we can trim to flex.

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A free fitting at the local box superstore or mega-golf store may not be performed by a competent club fitter.

Do your research and go to a respected fitter that's been in business for many years...and be willing to pay for the service. 

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I did a xxxxx fitting a few weeks ago......Not sure what I'll get, and I may end up taking my results and coming home to shop online for something. 

Another reason why fittings should not be free, saw this on another site. It's not a knock against this person, just how some consumers think. 

 
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My opinion and I'm sure there will be people that disagree.

If your going to someone that their only service is club fitting then you should pay for it. If you purchase through them you should get a discount equal to the fitting fee.

If you are going to a big box store then it should be a free service. They make their profit from retail sales and the fitters are in their overhead cost. Your paying for someone to be there anyway. So you can kill two birds with one stone if your sales person can also fit people properly.

For the OEM's I think they should have more fitting locations or travel vans that go to courses. My logic is simple. It cost less than $100 to build a driver. Assembly is done in a cellular manufacturing process. (This means one production line and its tooling produces one club. This same cell can change tooling to make another club) A cell is capable of producing 100 clubs a shift.  There are many cells in production at the same time. So let's just stick with one cell. 100 clubs a day ( and they can't keep up with demand) times $500 is $50,00.00 less cost (using $100 as cost on a driver, irons are less)  leaves you with $40,000.00 a day towards your business and thats only one club. Keep in mind that they don't make anything all components are purchased. All they do is inspect the incoming product and assemble.

There is the brick and motor, research, marketing, legal, payroll and all the other departments required for a manufacturer. This is a big number but they still make a good profit margin. So much is spent in advertisements. If the number of ads was limited in magazines and commercials there would be a lot of funds left for customer service fittings. I feel you would get more sales fitting people into your product than watching a commercial on TV or reading an ad. Customer service is king! 

 

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21 hours ago, Tom the Golf Nut said:

So much is spent in advertisements. If the number of ads was limited in magazines and commercials there would be a lot of funds left for customer service fittings. I feel you would get more sales fitting people into your product than watching a commercial on TV or reading an ad. Customer service is king! 

 

I have never bought from print or online golf advertisements. I find most related to golf take a lot of 'liberties', fyi golf balls labeled 'long and straight'. Most of those models, if truth be told, should be labeled 'short and anything but straight'.  Then there are the new drivers that come out every year promising an extra 10-15 yds. If I added up all those promises over a 10 yr period I'd be tee to green in 1 every time. 

I'll go back to my earlier comment that I'll gladly pay (the right) fitter for the right equipment recommendation and consider that I'm saving money because I didn't buy something that didn't work for me off the rack, which I've done several times. 

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Interesting podcast/topic...

What's truly best for the golf consumer? Simple: Options! 

Paid-, unpaid-, good-, bad-, professional-, amateur-, and even: self-fittings! 😉

Let the consumer make their own decision based on the information presented to them and the outcomes that result. It's their journey, it's their hard earned money, and it's their right.

If the goal is to truly grow the game of golf, the options and breadth of experiences available need to be as diverse as the audience it seeks to include, and to be honest it must go much deeper than the equipment someone ends up playing with.

Realizing each golfer has unique and different goals, reasons for playing, and levels of interest and commitment, and so there has to be options, and the more the better! And at the end of the day, it's up to the market/consumer to then dictate what it wants, what works, and in turn what succeeds.

Hope that helps!

Sincerely,

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  • 3 weeks later...

What Adam and the rest of the "get fitted" crowd do not take into account is the fact that most new golfers have horrible swings or fundamental flaws in that swing.  It might be a quick back swing, to steep of a swing, etc, etc.  A fitting is not going to do that person any good if they actually play often and work on a good swing plane.  That's when they should get fit for new clubs. All the fitting in the world will not fix a bad swing and if the person gets a correct swing then they should get fit. 

Hell I'm a prime example as I was fitted last December after playing maybe two rounds the whole year before.  I know that were I to go and get fit today after 100 rounds this year my results would be completely different, and the specs would be night and day different. 

So to say fitting is this magical tool to help your game its not.

If Adam really wants to help the average golfer he would be pushing for people to go get lessons first and after the golfer has established a good swing that is repeatable then, and only then should they get a fitting.  But then he would have to push for free lessons because it would only help the game of golf right?  

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10 minutes ago, Rhinosparky said:

A fitting is not going to do that person any good if they actually play often and work on a good swing plane.  That's when they should get fit for new clubs. All the fitting in the world will not fix a bad swing and if the person gets a correct swing then they should get fit. 

Hell I'm a prime example as I was fitted last December after playing maybe two rounds the whole year before.  I know that were I to go and get fit today after 100 rounds this year my results would be completely different, and the specs would be night and day different. 

 

Developing a swing and bad habits from ill fitting equipment will be a disaster for many golfers and will take a long time and lots of work to break. This is what fittings do. 
 

As for your second how do you know they would be completely different? Many people would be surprised how little things would change in a fitting with an improved swing. There may be some lie angle changes which can easily be corrected by a shop that has lie/loft machine. But unless you did a fitting at the start of your golf journey and now you have no data to say your results would be completely different 

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Wood: TaylorMade M5 5W w/Accra TZ5 +1/2”, TaylorMade Sim 3W w/Aldila rogue white

Hybrid: PXG Gen2 22* w/AD hybrid

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1 hour ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

 

As for your second how do you know they would be completely different? Many people would be surprised how little things would change in a fitting with an improved swing. There may be some lie angle changes which can easily be corrected by a shop that has lie/loft machine. But unless you did a fitting at the start of your golf journey and now you have no data to say your results would be completely different 

I agree with this. I also feel like people think that once they improve their swing, their current equipment is going to all of a sudden stop working. 

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14 minutes ago, dlow206 said:

I agree with this. I also feel like people think that once they improve their swing, their current equipment is going to all of a sudden stop working. 

Yep. Lots of misperceptions about equipment and swings still out there

Driver: PXG 0811 X+ Proto w/UST Helium 5F4

Wood: TaylorMade M5 5W w/Accra TZ5 +1/2”, TaylorMade Sim 3W w/Aldila rogue white

Hybrid: PXG Gen2 22* w/AD hybrid

Irons: PXG Gen3 0311T w/Nippon modus 120

Wedges: TaylorMade MG2 50*, Tiger grind 56/60

Putter: Scotty Caemeron Super Rat1

Ball: Titleist Prov1

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23 minutes ago, dlow206 said:

I agree with this. I also feel like people think that once they improve their swing, their current equipment is going to all of a sudden stop working. 

If that's the case then any equipment should have little effect and not require a fitting.  Why would new "fit" equipment suddenly help their game then?

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Just now, Rhinosparky said:

If that's the case then any equipment should have little effect and not require a fitting.  Why would new "fit" equipment suddenly help their game then?

In many cases year to year or even for 3-5 years in most equipment categories there won’t be a significant change in performance. However small changes in weight distribution or face construction can have an effect on what shaft would work for a person and would affect launch and spin. I have about 5 shafts that work for my swing in irons but not all of them work in every head. 

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Driver: PXG 0811 X+ Proto w/UST Helium 5F4

Wood: TaylorMade M5 5W w/Accra TZ5 +1/2”, TaylorMade Sim 3W w/Aldila rogue white

Hybrid: PXG Gen2 22* w/AD hybrid

Irons: PXG Gen3 0311T w/Nippon modus 120

Wedges: TaylorMade MG2 50*, Tiger grind 56/60

Putter: Scotty Caemeron Super Rat1

Ball: Titleist Prov1

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