Cleanline Surf in Sweet Spot of Current Sales Trends
We wanted to check in with Cleanline Surf in Oregon because they seem to be in the sweet spot of current pandemic-fueled sales trends.
Not only does Cleanline have a long established and robust online business, it also specializes in wetsuits, a category that has seen unreal demand during the pandemic.
In addition to its online business, Cleanline has brick-and-mortar stores in Seaside and Cannon Beach.
General Manager Dave Koller answered some questions for us.
How has business been going for Cleanline since the pandemic hit?
Dave Koller: Business has been booming since the pandemic hit. Most businesses selling outdoor equipment are doing well in this market.
However, we were fortunate enough to be well established online so we got a double shot in the arm since consumer buying habits have also shifted.
What categories are seeing the most demand?
Dave Koller: We are seeing the greatest demand in wetsuits and wetsuit accessories. We would gladly take more inventory at this point, but it is just not available. We expect the inventory challenges to persist through the summer.
Can you share any color about how much sales have grown online?
Dave Koller: Even with the challenge of getting inventory, we have seen our online sales nearly double. The brick-and-mortar stores have also surpassed expectations though they have not shown nearly that level of growth.
Are there any brands that are selling particularly well for you?
Dave Koller: Right now buyers are less brand focused and really just hoping to get a suit that fits. Right now, we do not have the options available that we have had in the past.
Are you seeing a lot of new surfers enter the market? If so, how do you think that could impact the industry in the future?
Dave Koller: We are seeing new faces in the shop and in the water. I do think that this is a positive indicator for the retail surf industry, but it is also putting a lot of pressure on our local beaches.
The pressure is coming from overcrowding, lack of parking, and increased trash. These issues can have a negative impact over time and make surfing less enjoyable.