There are numerous ways that people can shop for sports goods. The market for sports goods is massive and there are a variety of ways that people can purchase the goods that they want. The term sports items can be associated with either clothing that is worn for sports activities, or equipment that is required to partake in the events.
The most obvious way that someone can purchase sports equipment in the United Kingdom is from department stores. The larger stores have massive separate sports departments and with them there are many subsections. These subsections are often divided up by types of sports, then will be re-divided between the different brands.
As well as sports goods being purchased in department stores they are also bought in an individual sports store. These sports either operate independently or they owned by one of the larger retail groups. Sports Direct is a company that has bought 670 stores around the world.
It started as Maidenhead sports and was opened in 1982 by Mike Ashley. The company tries to operate at low profit margins with its stores providing competitive prices. In 2002 it bought Lillywhites the sports store located in Piccadilly Circus in London, and this was one of the oldest shops in the country.
One of Sports Direct’s major competitors is JD sports. They started as a single sports shop in Bury, England owned by John Wardle and David Makin. The company now has over 800 stores both in the UK and overseas. It is heavily involved with sponsoring sports teams such as Bournemouth and Dundee United.
Many sports store are located within clubs and this is especially true when supplying team’s shirts. Club shirts are big business and worth millions of pounds. The clubs receive a huge amount of money from fist selling the shirts to supporters and secondly from companies who pay the have their logo emblazoned across the front of the shirt.
Clubs, from a variety of different sports have taken full advantage of this by opening up mega-stores within their stadiums that will have the home shirts, plus up to 3 away shirts. It is a bone of contention that many sides change their shirts each season, so they can exploit the economic benefit by persuading their fans to purchase a shirt each year.
Some sports are heavily reliant on equipment. Golf is one such example and there are a wide variety of outlets. Golf equipment is available at golf clubs, in department stores, in general sports stores and on line. The sport provides a huge business as the cost of playing the game is high.
Just wearing the right outfit can be expensive as there are certain exclusive brands of shirts and shoes that are highly priced. The purchase of golf clubs is not cheap and some stores will offer the service of a tailor fit. This is where the buyer is measured and then the clubs are custom made for the purchaser. Modern technology has resulted in the availability of range finders which measure distance.
It is the same with cricket. As well as a player wearing the right clothing a player needs to purchase a bat, gloves, helmet, box and many other accessories. At Somerset County Cricket Club in Taunton the ground has its own sports shop selling all types of replica shirts plus basic cricket equipment. It also has a cricket bat manufacturer located next door to the shop.
Millichamp and Hall produce cricket bats from their small work shop. As well as providing bats to a number of players they also sell bats from the premises to the general public.
Sport is such a popular recreation that the business that has resulted from people’s interest is huge. This is reflected by the amount of different opportunities there are for the public to purchase sports goods.