HIGHLAND | Customer Cconvenience is spurring business at Galka’s Bowling Pro Shop since it moved to its new location within Plaza Lanes.
The business, which sells bowling balls, bags, shoes and accessories, drills bowling balls and offers bowling lessons, was formerly in a strip center near Stardust Bowl III on Sheffield Avenue in Dyer. It had been located there for 19 years before moving to Highland in early August.
“Tastes are changing and we needed to be inside a center so we consolidated,” said Wally Galka, whose father, Andy Galka, founded the business 34 years ago. “Now we’re part of the bowling center. We rent space here.”
Although Galka spend $5,000 to $10,000 retrofitting the space for his shop, he says the cost will be offset by the savings of not having to pay the property taxes and utility costs associated with a stand-alone location.
Being in the bowling center offers customers the convenience of buying the equipment used in the sport right where it’s used, Galka said.
“Everything is now, now, now, so people would rather deal with the center they’re bowling in,” he said. “Most of it is convenience. Now, if they want something, we’re right here.”
Plus, because drilling the holes in bowling balls is about 65 percent of Galka’s business, being within the bowling center gives clients the opportunity to test the balls for fit.
“They can roll it right away and come back right away if they need adjustments,” Galka said. “The convenience of things really counts.”
During its first month following the move, business has increased about 20 percent, he said.
“Ninety-nine point nine percent of our customers think it’s the best thing we did, and say we should have done it sooner,” Galka said.
The shop is open from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays.