Golf – golf is a sport with a lot of traditions and ancient lineage – this is also the reasons why golf still has a lot of traditional sales channels. When I was hired for creating the look and feel for greenfee365.com, I wanted to renew the way we buy tee times online. Instead of using the traditional channels; calling local tour operators or golf clubs and asking for available tee times, I wanted to create a platform that was simple and accessible for everyone.

So, I did what everyone else would do; I looked at the competitors. I tried to adopt what they did well and improve what they, in my opinion, did not. Ironically, I found that what I missed the most was an easy way of buying a simple green fee. I noticed that you often had to buy multiple green fees, usually including buggies. The fact that you often had to make a request to play at some clubs, without getting an instant verification, did not make this any better.

So instead of looking for answers in the golf industry, I looked for solutions in other industries – especially in travel. And I found numerous ways to improve the shopping experience, making it easier for the golfers to find clubs and book tee times. As a user and designer, I know what impact a bad shopping experience can have on your customers. With an increasing share of online sales, your conversion is getting more important than ever.

When I shop online, I want to quickly find and add my product to my cart and then place my order. This goes for any industry, be it retail or golf. What I don’t want is to be forced to buy packages that doesn’t suit me. Sure, I can by two pair of shoes with additional shoe laces included, but I also want to be able to buy JUST a pair of shoes. This common way of selling green fees was something I found bad at competitors, and which I changed in my design.

I wanted to create the easiest platform for buying green fees, with just the right information where you wanted it, when you wanted it. I listened to friends, colleagues and our advisory board (thank you). I tried to simplify each step in the shopping experience as much as possible to remove any usability obstacles, that may have confused or lost a potential customer. I sketched by hand, made wireframes and interactive prototypes. I tested them on people. I made more sketches, wireframes and prototypes. I did this for two months until I felt pleased with the results.

And the result turned out rather simple, but with an interface that was clean and recognizable throughout. I haven’t tried to revolutionize the way golf works, I just wanted to renew the online booking experience for golfers; giving users the simplest booking platform possible, available for everyone, everywhere.

We are working around the clock and during the coming months we will add a lot of more functionality and bring this platform on a large scale to European golfers.

Check it out at greenfee365.com,

Filip Åstrand
User Experience designer / Web Developer