A driving range business, also known as a golf driving range, is a facility specifically designed for golfers to practice their golf swings and improve their skills.
It typically consists of a large open area with multiple hitting bays or teeing areas, where golfers can hit golf balls toward designated targets or markers. Driving range businesses can cater to a wide range of customers, including recreational golfers looking to practice, experienced golfers seeking to refine their skills, and beginners who want to learn the fundamentals of golf.
They provide a convenient and affordable option for golfers to work on their swing technique, distance control, and accuracy without having to play a full round of golf on a course.
Steps on How to Start a Driving Range Business
Table of Content
Conduct Market Research
Conducting market research for a driving range can provide valuable insights into the target market, competition, and customer preferences.
You would need to clearly identify the goals of your market research. Determine what specific information you are seeking, such as the target demographic, demand for a driving range in the area, competitor analysis, pricing strategies, or customer preferences.
Next, you are expected to determine the target market for your driving range. Consider factors such as age groups, skill levels, income levels, and geographical location. This will help you tailor your research efforts and understand the needs and preferences of your potential customers.
Design surveys or questionnaires to gather information directly from potential customers. You can distribute these surveys through online platforms, social media, local golf clubs, or community centers. Ask questions about their golfing habits, frequency of practice, preferences, and what they would expect from a driving range facility.
Finally, once you have collected the data, analyze and interpret it to identify trends, patterns, and opportunities. Use the information to refine your business plan, and make informed decisions about the target market, pricing, marketing strategies, and facility design.
a. Who is the Target Market for Driving Range Business?
- Golf Enthusiasts (avid golfers, enthusiasts, or even professionals)
- Recreational Golfers
- Individuals who are new to golf and want to learn the basics of the sport
- Business professionals who use golf as a networking or recreational activity
- Families and casual users who are looking for an enjoyable outdoor activity.
b. Is Driving Range Business a Profitable Business?
Yes, the driving range business is a profitable business. Available data shows that the market size of the Golf Driving Ranges & Family Fun Centers industry was $16.7 billion in 2022.
c. Are There Existing Niches in the Industry?
No, there are no niche ideas when it comes to the driving range business because the driving range business belongs to the sports and recreation industry.
d. Who are the Major Competitors?
- Chelsea Piers Golf Club
- TPC Sawgrass
- Pelican Hill Golf Club
- Haggin Oaks Golf Complex
- The Golf Club at Chelsea Piers
- World Golf Village
- TPC Scottsdale
- The Practice Tee
- Kierland Golf Club
- The Golf Center at SportsOhio
- Olde Salem Greens
- Westchester Golf Range
- Louis Golf Lessons and Driving Range
- The Golf Station
- Okeeheelee Golf Course
- Haggin Oaks Golf Complex
- Rancho Park Golf Course
- Pine Oaks Golf Course
- Royal Oaks Country Club.
e. Are There County or State Regulations or Zoning Laws for Driving Ranges?
Yes, there are county and state regulations and zoning laws that apply to driving range businesses in the United States. But it is important to note that regulations and zoning laws for driving range businesses in the United States can vary significantly depending on the specific county, state, and even local jurisdiction.
The regulations may encompass various aspects such as licensing, permits, land use, safety codes, and business operations.
For example, most jurisdictions require businesses to obtain the necessary licenses and permits to operate legally. These requirements can vary by state and local government. Contact your local city or county government offices or visit their websites to determine the specific licensing requirements for your area.
So also, depending on your business setup, you may need to comply with safety and building codes to ensure the facility and equipment meet specific standards. This may include considerations such as fire safety, accessibility, emergency exits, ventilation, and more. Check with your local building or fire department for the applicable codes and regulations.
f. Is There a Franchise for Driving Range Business?
Yes, there are franchise opportunities for driving range business and some of them are:
- BigShots Golf
- Drive Shack
- Premier Indoor Golf
- Golfer’s Paradise
- Monster Mini Golf
- TGA Premier Golf & Tennis.
g. What Do You Need to Start a Driving Range Business?
- Business plan
- Legal structure
- Licenses and permits
- A standard facility in a suitable location
- Equipment and supplies
- Marketing and advertising
Choose a Memorable Business Name
When looking to start a business, before you can begin to file the necessary documents with the constituted authorities or start your website, it is necessary that you come up with a name that you will be recognized with. It is essential that the name you come up with can easily be pronounced, is unique and easily memorable. Some of the catchy business name ideas suitable for a driving range business are;
Creative Driving Range Business Name ideas
- West Hampstead® Drive Range, Inc.
- Donald Jenkins® Drive Range, LLC
- Tee Haven® Drive Range, Inc.
- Sure P® Drive Range, Inc.
- Fairway Swings™ Drive Range, LLC
- Don Kennelly® Drive Range, Inc.
- Chris Greene® Drive Range, Inc.
- Steve Harris® Drive Range, Inc.
- Swing City© Drive Range, LLC
- Target Greens® Drive Range, Inc.
- Ray Power® Drive Range, Inc.
- Swing Scape® Drive Range, Inc.
- Bath Logan™ Drive Range, LLC
- Gerald Obama® Drive Range, LLC
- Range Oasis® Drive Range, Inc.
- Promise Ethan® Drive Range, Inc.
- Swing Labs® Drive Range, LL
- Pinpoint Drives™ Drive Range, Inc.
- Golf Prospect® Drive Range, LLC
- Swing Quest® Drive Range, Inc.
Register Your Business
a. What Type of Business Structure is Best for Driving Range Business?
The best type of business structure for a driving range business depends on several factors, including the size of the business, the number of owners, and the level of personal liability exposure the owners are willing to accept.
However, we usually recommend a limited liability company (LLC) for driving range business. An LLC is a popular choice for startup businesses because it offers personal liability protection for the owners while allowing them to be taxed as a pass-through entity.
This means that the profits and losses of the business are passed through to the owners’ personal tax returns, avoiding double taxation.
- Choose a Name for Your LLC.
- File Articles of Organization.
- Choose a registered agent.
- Decide on member vs. manager management.
- Create an LLC operating agreement.
- Comply with other tax and regulatory requirements.
- File annual reports.
c. What Type of License is Needed to Open a Driving Range Business?
- Business License
- Building permit
- Fire safety license and permit
- Healthcare-related permits
- Professional license
- Music and Entertainment Licenses
- Alcohol and Food Service Permits
- Environmental permit
- Zoning and Land Use Permits
- Golf Course Membership Association (optional).
d. What Type of Certification is Needed to Open a Driving Range Business?
Here are some certifications that you or your trainers may consider:
- PGA Professional Certification
- Golf Course Management Certification
- First Aid and CPR Certifications.
e. What Documents are Needed to Open a Driving Range Business?
- Business plan
- Business License
- Employer Identification Number (EIN)
- State-specific licenses and permits
- Building permit
- Fire safety license and permit
- Healthcare-related permits
- Professional license
- Alcohol and Food Service Permits
- Music and Entertainment Licenses
- Environmental permit
- Zonal permit
- Insurance policies
f. Do You Need a Trademark, Copyright, or Patent?
A driving range business may need a trademark and/or copyright, but typically not a patent. A driving range business may want to trademark its name or logo to prevent others from using the same to establish brand recognition and goodwill.
A driving range business may want to copyright original materials such as training manuals, brochures, newsletters, or other written or artistic works it creates, to prevent others from using or reproducing them without permission. Driving range businesses typically do not create new or unique inventions or discoveries that would require patent protection.
Cost Analysis and Budgeting
When it comes to starting a driving range business, the startup costs vary, and it could range from as low as $2 million to over $10 million. This is so because the cost of securing a facility, equipment, furnishing, and startup inventory for a high-end driving range business is on the high side.
b. What are the Costs Involved in Starting a Driving range Business?
- Business Registration Fees – $750.
- Legal expenses for obtaining licenses and permits – $7,800.
- Marketing, Branding, and Promotions – $2,000.
- Business Consultant Fee – $3,500.
- Insurance – $8,800.
- Rent/Lease – $750,000
- Other start-up expenses include commercial satellite TV subscriptions, stationery ($500), and phone and utility deposits ($1,800).
- Operational Cost (salaries of employees, payments of bills et al) – $120,000
- Store Equipment (cash register, security, ventilation, signage) – $6,350
- Equipment, Furniture, and Supplies – $550,000
- Website: $1,200
- Opening party: $5,000
- Miscellaneous: $5,000
c. What Factors Determine the Cost of Opening a Driving Range Business?
- The size of the driving range business
- The choice of location
- The required licenses and permits
- The cost of hiring and paying a business consultant and attorney
- The cost of branding, promotion, and marketing of the driving range business
- The cost of furnishing and equipping the driving range business
- The cost of the insurance policy covers
- The cost of registering the business
- Cost of recruiting and training your staff
- The cost of the purchase and customizing of uniforms
- The cost for the grand opening of the driving range business.
d. Do You Need to Build a Facility? If YES, How Much Will It Cost?
Yes, you will need to build or lease a facility for your driving range business. The cost of building a facility will depend on several factors, such as the size of the facility, location, and the types of amenities and services you plan to offer. But on average, you should budget between $2 million to over $10 million.
Please note that if you plan to build a new facility, the cost will likely be higher than if you lease or renovate an existing facility.
e. What are the Ongoing Expenses of a Driving Range Business?
- Payroll and employee benefits such as health insurance, retirement plans, and workers’ compensation insurance.
- Facility maintenance such as landscaping, cleaning, and repairs.
- Utilities such as electricity, gas, water, and sewer.
- Property taxes
- Insurance such as liability insurance, property insurance, and workers’ compensation insurance.
- Equipment and supplies such as golf equipment, golf clubs, practice aids, range mats, tees, baskets, ball dispensers, and other supplies needed for the operation of the driving range
- Marketing and advertising such as brochures, website development, and social media advertising.
- Professional fees such as accounting, legal, and consulting services.
- Membership administration such as membership databases, billing, and collections.
f. What is the Average Salary of your Staff?
- Chief Executive Officer – $65,000 per year
- Facility Manager – $48,000 per year
- Instructors (Safety Officer) – $35,000 per year
- Administrative Assistants – $34,000 per year
- Receptionist – $32,000 per year
- Cleaners – $30,000 per year
- Security Guards – $28,000 per year
g. How Do You Get Funding to Start a Driving Range Business?
- Raising money from personal savings and sale of personal stocks and properties
- Raising money from investors and business partners
- Sell shares to interested investors
- Applying for a loan from your bank/banks
- Source for soft loans from your family members and friends.
a. Executive Summary
Chris Greene™ Driving Range, Inc. is a premier driving range facility located in the vibrant city of Dublin, Ohio. Dublin, Ohio, is a thriving community with a strong golf culture. With its growing population and a high percentage of golf enthusiasts, there is a significant market opportunity for a premium driving range facility like Chris Greene™ Driving Range, Inc.
We are deeply rooted in the Dublin community and actively participate in local initiatives and events. We collaborate with schools, golf associations, and charitable organizations to promote golf as a sport, foster community relationships, and give back to the local area.
At Chris Greene™ Driving Range, Inc., we prioritize customer satisfaction. Our highly trained and friendly staff are committed to creating a positive and engaging atmosphere for golfers of all skill levels. We offer personalized coaching sessions, group lessons, and golf clinics to assist customers in reaching their goals.
b. Products and Service
Our driving range offers a state-of-the-art golf practice experience, catering to golf enthusiasts, recreational players, and beginners alike. We provide a welcoming and professional environment where customers can improve their golf skills, enjoy social interactions, and have fun with friends and family.
c. Mission Statement
At Chris Greene™ Driving Range, Inc., our mission is to provide a premier golf practice experience that inspires and empowers golfers of all skill levels. We are committed to offering a modern, welcoming, and professional environment where individuals and families can enhance their golfing abilities, foster a love for the sport, and create lasting memories.
With exceptional customer service, state-of-the-art facilities, and community engagement, we strive to be the driving range of choice in Dublin, Ohio, and beyond.
Our vision at Chris Greene™ Driving Range, Inc. is to revolutionize the driving range industry by setting the standard for excellence and innovation. We envision a future where golfers of all ages and backgrounds can access cutting-edge practice tools, receive personalized coaching, and enjoy a vibrant and inclusive golfing community.
By fostering a love for the sport, promoting skill development, and nurturing lasting relationships, we aim to inspire individuals to reach their full golfing potential while enhancing their overall well-being.
d. Goals and Objectives
The goals and objectives of a driving range business are to offer state-of-the-art golf practice experience, catering to golf enthusiasts, recreational players, and beginners alike.
e. Organizational Structure
- Chief Executive Officer
- Facility Manager
- Instructors (Safety Officers)
- Administrative Assistant
- Security Guards
a. SWOT Analysis
- Situated in Dublin, Ohio, a thriving community with a strong golf culture, providing access to a large target market of golf enthusiasts and potential customers.
- Equipped with state-of-the-art amenities, including well-maintained turf, target greens, and cutting-edge technology for swing analysis, creating a superior practice experience.
- Highly trained and friendly staff dedicated to delivering outstanding customer service, creating a welcoming and engaging environment for all visitors.
- Offering family-friendly amenities, such as designated children’s areas and mini-golf courses, attracting families and increasing revenue opportunities.
- Active involvement in the local community through collaborations with schools, golf associations, and charitable organizations, enhancing brand reputation and establishing strong community relationships.
- As a new driving range, building initial brand recognition and awareness among potential customers may require focused marketing efforts and time.
- Operating in a competitive market with existing driving ranges and golf facilities, necessitating strategic differentiation and effective marketing strategies to attract customers.
- The golf industry is often influenced by seasonal fluctuations, requiring effective planning and marketing initiatives to maintain consistent revenue streams throughout the year.
- Inclement weather conditions, such as rain or extreme temperatures, can impact the number of customers visiting the driving range, potentially affecting revenue generation.
- Capitalizing on the growing population of golf enthusiasts in the local area and capturing a significant share of the market through targeted marketing and exceptional customer experiences.
- Offering additional programs such as golf clinics, specialized coaching, leagues, tournaments, and corporate events, diversifying revenue streams and attracting a wider customer base.
- Establishing partnerships with local golf associations, schools, and golfing professionals to enhance the driving range’s reputation and attract customers through endorsements and collaborative events.
- Developing a robust online presence through a website, social media channels, and online booking platforms to reach and engage with a larger audience, driving increased visibility and customer acquisition.
- Economic downturns or recessions may impact consumer discretionary spending on recreational activities such as golf, potentially affecting revenue.
- Evolving customer preferences and trends in the golf industry, such as the popularity of alternative forms of entertainment or competition from virtual golf simulators, may pose a challenge in attracting and retaining customers.
- Compliance with local regulations and environmental permits related to land use, water usage, and environmental sustainability may add operational complexities and costs.
- Intense competition from existing driving ranges, golf courses, and alternative entertainment options within the local market may require strategic pricing, marketing, and differentiation strategies to maintain a competitive edge.
b. How Do Driving Range Businesses Make Money?
Driving range businesses generate revenue through various streams. Here are some common ways that driving range businesses make money:
- Range Ball Sales
- Range Membership Programs
- Coaching and Instruction
- Equipment Rentals
- Golf Club Sales
- Food and Beverage Sales
- Event Hosting and Facility Rentals
- Merchandise Sales
- Sponsorships and Advertising.
c. Payment Options
- Credit or Debit Card
- Electronic Payment Systems such as PayPal or Venmo
- Bank Transfers
d. Sales & Advertising Strategies
- Utilize online advertising platforms such as Google Ads, social media ads (Facebook, Instagram), and display advertising to reach your target audience.
- Maintain an active presence on popular social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
- Regularly post engaging content, including photos, videos, promotions, and updates about upcoming events or attractions.
- Encourage customers to share their experiences and use relevant hashtags to expand your reach.
- Collaborate with local influencers or bloggers who have a significant following among your target audience.
- Build an email list of customers and potential customers who have shown interest in your driving range.
- Encourage your existing customers to refer their friends and family to your driving range.
- Forge partnerships with complementary businesses in your area, such as hotels, restaurants, schools, and community organizations.
- Organize special events, golf competitions, or promotional offers to attract new customers and create excitement. Examples include family fun days, holiday-themed events, discounted admission days, or exclusive packages for large groups or school outings.
a. How Much Should You Charge for Your Product/Service?
Bucket or Token Pricing: Prices for a bucket of range balls typically range from $5 to $20, depending on the size of the bucket and the quality of the range balls.
Membership Fees: Membership fees can range from $50 to $200 per month or $500 to $2,000 per year, depending on the range’s offerings and location.
Coaching and Instruction: Individual lessons can range from $50 to $200 per hour, while group lessons or clinics may range from $20 to $100 per person, depending on the duration and level of instruction.
Equipment Rentals: Golf club rentals can range from $10 to $30 per session, while other equipment rentals like golf bags or push carts may be offered at lower rates.
Event Hosting and Facility Rentals: Pricing for hosting events, tournaments, or private parties at a driving range can vary significantly depending on the scale of the event, facilities provided, and any additional services included.
b. How Much Profit Do Driving Range Business Owners Make a Year?
The profit that driving range business owners can make in a year can vary significantly depending on several factors such as the size of the business, its location, the number of clients, the pricing strategy, and the expenses involved in running the business.
c. What Factors Determine the Amount of Profit to Be Made?
- The capacity of the driving range business
- The service and product offerings of the driving range business
- The location of the driving range business is covering
- The management style of the driving range business
- The business approach of the driving range business
- The advertising and marketing strategies adopted by the driving range business
- The number of years the driving range business is in business
d. What is the Profit Margin of a Driving Range Business?
On average, the profit margin for driving range business products ranges from 10% to 30%, depending on the location, and service offerings.
e. What is the Sales Forecast?
Below is the sales forecast for a driving range business. It is based on the location of the business and other factors as it relates to such startups in the United States.
- First Fiscal Year (FY1): $650,000
- Second Fiscal Year (FY2): $950,000
- Third Fiscal Year (FY3): $1.6 million
Set Up your Shop/Office
a. How Do You Choose a Perfect Location for Driving Range Business?
- The demography of the location as it relates to golf lovers and families.
- The demand for the services offered by driving range business in the location
- The purchasing power of businesses and residents in and around the location
- Accessibility of the location
- The number of driving ranges in and around the location
- The local laws and regulations in the community/state
- Traffic, parking, and security et al
b. What State and City is Best to Open a Driving Range Business?
- Overland Park, Kansas
- Cary, North Carolina
- White Plains, New York
- Bellevue, Washington
- Ann Arbor, Michigan
- Houston, Texas
- West Palm Beach, Florida
- Madison, Wisconsin
- Irvine, California
- East Longmeadow, Massachusetts.
c. What Equipment is Needed to Operate a Driving Range Business?
- Range Balls
- Ball Dispenser or Ball Picker
- Mats or Turf
- Target Greens and Flags
- Tees and Tee Mats
- Practice Aids and Training Equipment such as alignment sticks, putting aids, swing trainers, and other tools that can help golfers improve their skills and enhance their practice sessions.
- Golf Carts
- Seating and Shade Structures
- Safety equipment such as first aid kits, fire extinguishers, and signage to communicate safety guidelines.
- Pro Shop Inventory (golf clubs, golf bags, golf balls, tees, gloves, apparel, and other golf accessories).
- Maintenance equipment such as mowers, turf maintenance tools, ball washers, ball retrievers, and other necessary equipment for upkeep.
- Payment and POS System.
If you are looking to start a driving range business, then you should make plans to hire employees, this is so because a driving range business cannot be run by an individual. It requires a team to effectively run a driving range business because of how big the facility.
Launch the Business Proper
Organizing an opening party for a new driving range business can be a good way to introduce your business to the community and create awareness about your services.
If you want to go ahead to organize a proper launch for your driving range business, then you must make sure to invite potential clients (families and golf lovers), key stakeholders, and other members of the community who may be interested in your services.
a. What Makes a Driving Range Business Successful?
- Being consistently reliable
- Excellent customer service
- Excellent facilities, services, programs, and events
- Emphasis on safety
- Efficient operations
- Compliance with regulations
- Hiring skilled and knowledgeable employees and providing ongoing training that will ensure you deliver high-quality services.
b. What Happens During a Typical Day at a Driving Range Business?
- Staff members arrive and prepare the facility for the day’s operations, including turning on lights, starting up attractions, and ensuring cleanliness
- Guests start arriving, and the admission process begins. This involves selling tickets, checking reservations, issuing wristbands or access cards, and providing any necessary information or instructions.
- Guests engage in golf games and related activities. Staff members monitor the game area, assist with game operations, exchange tickets for prizes, and maintain the machines.
- If there are scheduled events, such as birthday parties or group outings, staff members coordinate and host these activities. They ensure the smooth flow of the event, manage party rooms or dedicated spaces, and provide assistance to the guests.
- Ongoing maintenance and cleaning tasks take place throughout the day to ensure the facility remains safe, presentable and well-maintained.
- Administrative tasks are handled such as managing reservations, updating inventory, handling financial transactions, and responding to customer inquiries or feedback. This may also include marketing activities, social media management, and staff scheduling
- Closing and end-of-day procedures.
c. What Skills and Experience Do You Need to Build a Driving Range Business?
- Passion for golf and the family entertainment industry
- Passion and creativity
- Top-notch organization skills
- Health and fitness experience
- Facility management skills
- Interpersonal skill
- Accounting and bookkeeping skills
- Business management skills
- Organizational skills
- Work experience in the driving range and family entertainment industry
- Experience in managing people and organizing events
- Experience in business administration.