Why Are Golf Balls So Expensive?


When you head to the store or shop online for golf balls, you will find golf balls that range from $15 a dozen up to $50 a dozen.  The golf balls range in expense and overall quality.

For the beginner golfer, it might seem completely nonsensical to buy golf balls that are $50 a dozen and I would agree.  For the beginner golfer or young junior golfer the lower end priced ball might actually be better.

Most amateur golfers will lose at least 1-2 golf balls per round in either the water or the trees.

The more advanced golfers will be able to use a ball for a round or two before wanting to switch to a new golf ball.

Why Are Golf Balls So Expensive?

Golf balls can be expensive to manufacture and a lot of money is spent in the research and development of a golf ball as it must meet certain specifications to be deemed a legal USGA or R&A.  The most expensive golf balls require companies to pay high end money to researchers and engineers to develop a high performing golf ball.

List of Reasons Golf Balls Are So Expensive:

  • Manufacturing Cost
  • Research and Development
  • Supply and Demand

Resource: Tired of over paying big money for premium golf balls? Check out our review of lostgolfballs.com

#1 Manufacturing Cost

If you were to cut a golf ball in half, you will see the multiple layers and the science and engineering that goes into a golf ball.  There is a certain level of performance expectation from all golf balls.  Even the cheapest, most affordable golf balls need to have a clean looking surface and perform somewhat consistently from golf ball to golf ball.  If you hit a 7 iron 150 one time, if you make the same swing it should fly 150 again.  

#2 Research and Development

The golf ball space is a competitive space.  There are a handful of companies that have designed and produce a tour level quality golf ball.  If you check out the golf ball used on tour most frequently, you will see a range of top end golf balls.

To produce a golf ball of this caliber plenty of money is invested in the research and development of a golf ball.  As the governing bodies change or new technology is discovered, golf ball companies need to keep up with other companies and ensure that the professionals are content with the performance of a golf ball.

Even in the lower to mid tier golf ball, there is quality competition for the amateur dollars spent on golf balls.

#3 Supply and Demand

There are over 100 million golfers that play the game worldwide.  The demand for golf balls is high and even if you never lose a golf ball, the golfer will want a new golf ball every 1-3 rounds.  The golf ball is not built to last forever as needs to be replaced.  The professionals may replace their golf ball every 3-6 holes.  The best amateurs might replace every 9-18 holes.

Overall, there is no shortage of demand for new golf balls.  While there are those that search through the wooded areas that border a golf course, most golfers like brand new, perfectly clean golf balls ready for their new round.

I know golfers that will break out a new golf ball or two for every round that they play and they play 100-150 rounds per year.

Those of us that are golf balls will often receive golf balls as gifts on our birthdays and during the holiday season.

Overall, the demand is high for new golfer balls and high performing golf balls, which allows golf ball companies to charge what they do for the best the game has to offer.

Other Golf Ball Related Posts on Frequently Asked Questions:

How To Determine the Best Golf Ball for you?

I like to use technology to determine the best golf ball for my game and would highly recommend it to others.  Back in the day the only real way to test a ball was to play a 1-5 rounds with it.  Now, golfers can use launch monitors to measure their performance.  Some areas to consider:

  • Carry and Total Distance
  • Launch Angle
  • Spin Rate
  • Spin Axis
  • Ball Speed

Overall, knowing how far you hit your irons with the best golf ball for your game can provide you with the edge you need to play your best golf.  A golf ball that flies 150 yards one time and then 160 yards the next will leave you in plenty of bad situations.

Here are the top 3 affordable launch monitors that I would recommend:

My Secret To Golf Improvement

Let’s face it, in order to get really good at golf, we must practice frequently.  About three years ago, I made the leap and invested in a golf simulator build for my garage.  I went with a SkyTrak Launch Monitor and the TGC software and can now play over 100,000 courses including Augusta, Pebble Beach, Bethpage Black, Whistling Straits. St. Andrews and many other of the top 100 courses in the world.

This golf simulator setup, which is more affordable that you might imagine, has been a game changer.  I can now play golf everyday of the year regardless of rain, snow, cold weather or time of day.  I can practice or play rounds of golf.  I can stand in the 11th fairway at Augusta and with the auto-rewind feature I am able to practice my approach shots from various differences.

It is worth checking out through Rain or Shine Golf as they offer some incredible packages along with financing offers that are difficult to beat.

Some direct links to Rain or Shine Golf for pricing and financing:

 

The more expensive golf balls typically perform better in windy conditions.

Take Action – What You Can Do Today to Get Better

What does this mean for you?  I believe in the following recipe to get better:

1 – Improve your motion in the golf swing by identifying a golf instructor.  Here are some options:

Here is a list of golf instructors that we have reviewed:

2 – Train to swing faster and improve your swing speed.  Here are some options:

Looking to gain more Speed and Distance in your swing. Two Options:

3 – Understand course strategy and work to break through your next barrier.  Here is a series on breaking through:

We have provided guides on how to break 100, 90, 80 and 70. Check out more below, if interested.

4 – Practice Frequently

Did you know that I build a golf simulator in my garage and have played over 500 rounds of golf on my SkyTrak system?  It has been a game changer and one worth checking out. Here are some of my other posts on golf simulators frequently asked questions:

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