A pro shop is a profit center that should be taken advantage of. But, it might be one of those things that seems too big or too scary to handle.
CrossFit Siege, located in both Miramar and Pembroke Pines, Florida, has an in Box pro shop, but it also has an online version that allows members to step outside of the gym and still purchase merchandise. “One benefit for sure is obviously you increase sales a lot more because sometimes people don’t want to necessarily buy while they’re there, but by being able to have a website where they can go home and browse through the different items, that’s number one,” said Adrien Tapia, the owner of the Box.
However, CrossFit Siege didn’t always have a pro shop. When the Box first started, Tapia said he didn’t like to give it much thought. “It was hard for me to devote time into the merchandising because I’m not a huge fan of it in terms of what it entails and the time that it takes,” he said. “I’m not the best when it comes to designing and sitting with graphic designers.”
So, when a good friend — and another Affiliate — sold his gym that boasted a huge pro shop, Tapia was in luck. They cut a deal: Tapia’s friend would help expand CrossFit Siege’s own store in return for a membership. From there, it took off.
Tapia said the demand for products was always present, it was just the supply that was lacking. Based upon the few things he had sold in the past, and his friend’s own selling experience, the pro shop soon sported clothing, headbands, shakers, jump ropes, etc. Items like jump ropes were hot sellers, especially when members forgot their own.
Finding a printer was another task that was essential to Tapia’s pro shop. While his friend already had one, Tapia said it’s vital that you do your research. The printer needs to not only be responsive, but also willing to work with you. If you build a relationship with your printer, said Tapia, they will be more reliable and will give you time when you need it.
As for the online portion of the shop, Tapia said it allows him to more easily keep track of how much he’s selling and making — essentially, it keeps him organized. But, that would mean nothing if his website was poor. That, it seems, is one of the most important factors. Tapia explained he had a member design a website for his Box that was separate from the shop website, allowing everything that’s sold to be on one page and easily found. “Creating a website that’s functional and that’s easy to navigate [is important],” said Tapia.