An online platform that accurately ranks club golfers on an international basis adopted its 260,000th player last month.
Devised by David Moir, a former president of the Scottish Golf Union and architect of the World Amateur Golf Ranking System (WAGR), www.mygolfranking.net was initially set up to help revive dwindling golf club memberships by igniting golfers’ competitive spirit.
The site, which launched with just 6000 players in 2012, has seen registrations rocket over the past 12 months after entering into a deal with a leading club management system, which automatically uploads net competition results from its client UK golf clubs to the site each day.
Now, with the help of Business Gateway Fife, David’s company, in League with Golf Ltd, which is based in Lundin Links, is looking to franchise My Golf Ranking, having transferred the site to its own dedicated server this month to better position its expansion.
David said: “Since engaging with Business Gateway two years ago we’ve benefited from a range of support including marketing, website development, funding, and IT advice, which has helped us better understand the digital landscape that we now work in.
“A strategy workshop set up last year then highlighted the opportunities franchising and licensing the site could bring, initially at a local level but ultimately worldwide, alongside the advertising potential the site also provides.
“That seminar opened our eyes to the income generation potential of My Golf Ranking. We estimate there will be a further 200k registrations by the end of 2017 alone, that’s a vast pool of potential customers for brands to target which would provide a long-term revenue source for the business.
“Golfers are competitive animals and our site uses an algorithm, similar to that used by WAGR, to provide the most accurate way to calculate rankings using stroke play and Stableford club event scores.
“This means club golfers don’t need to travel anywhere to compete for the top spot and they can easily see how they fare against other golfers throughout the UK on a weekly basis free of charge.
“A recent survey we did highlighted 65% of the clubs registered had seen increased competition entries since signing up, with 77% stating the site added value to their members. At a time when golf clubs are suffering, those statistics showcase the real benefit of our site.”
Alasdair Busby, Business Gateway Fife, said: “It’s easy for golfers to know how they rank within their own club, but what David and his colleagues have created is a site that gives them a free and easy way to see how they fair against thousands of other players.
“At the moment players are ranked UK wide, but the ultimate aim is to rank golfers on a global scale and the workshop we set up for them highlighted how they could do that via franchising. Our advice has provided access to expertise that has armed in League with Golf Ltd with the knowledge needed to realise the site’s global potential.”
Having been in golf administration since the 1970s, David left the architectural profession aged 52 to work for the Championship Department of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club (The R&A) in St Andrews as its entries manager.
While working there, he was instrumental in devising the WAGR system that is used by The R&A and the United States Golf Association to determine the winners of the annual McCormack Medals, as a qualification tool for elite golfers to enter their events, and a current form indicator for team selection purposes. Once operational he immediately saw the potential – and appeal – of creating a similar system for club golfers.
He said: “There are presently around 10K – 6,800 male and 3,200 female – elite amateur golfers in the world and I thought, if we can create a system for them why not use a similar infrastructure for club golfers based on their handicap scores? It’s free to register to our site and there are weekly and monthly prizes. Clubs are also ranked against each other based on their members’ performance.
“It’s a great way to showcase the vast array of golf clubs and talent we have and gives golfers a fun way to compete and improve their performance.”