Coolers for the backyard are in high demand, and hot tub retailers are catching on
By Michelle L. Cramer
Offering other products in your hot tub showroom gives you the opportunity to upsell or earn potential customers with aftermarket appeal. Typical products tend to be hot tub accessories, patio furniture and grills. But many hot tub retailers are seeing the benefits of offering coolers, too.
Fiesta Pools and Spas in Tulsa, Oklahoma, has exclusively offered Yeti coolers for the past three years. Owner Travis Hogan says offering coolers goes hand-in-hand with the hot tub consumer. “I think it’s the expendable income,” he says. “The quality of the product is super high, and these consumers don’t cut any corners. They like the luxury product. There is a need for this product, and it’s going to last a long time.”
Hogan says Yeti is one more thing that brings in customers. When people come to buy a cooler, he gets an opportunity to educate them on all the other things they sell.
While Yeti is a highly popular option for hot tub retailers, there are others on the market hot tub retailers may want to consider.
Products: Coolers ranging from 25 to 150 quarts, 12-can and 24-can SoftPak cooler bags, stainless-steel bottles and tumblers ranging from 18 to 32 ounces, 64-ounce stainless-steel beer growler, several accessories (divider, hauler, dry goods tray, security straps, ice packs and lid graphics)
Price: SoftPaks start at $99; 150-quart coolers start at $549
A family-owned and operated company out of Fort Worth, Texas, Bison Coolers are made in America and backed by a warranty. The coolers can be customized with your logo for ongoing marketing exposure, and Bison offers low order quantities.
“Coolers and hot tubs go hand-in-hand,” says Jeremy Denson, Bison co-owner. “Having access to cold drinks while in a hot tub not only keeps you hydrated, but also helps you have fun and enjoy the moment more.”
Products: Coolers ranging from 15 to 400 quarts, cups and tumblers, soft bag coolers,
Price: $125 to $750
Grizzly offers a customizable cooler, with prices depending on chosen options. Grizzly coolers are IGBC Bear-Resistant Certified and have gone through extensive testing to ensure maximized ice retention.
Products: Outfitter Series Coolers (22, 35, 55, 75 and 125 quarts), Adventure Series Coolers (30 and 103 quarts) and accessories such as seat cushions to add to the cooler, cooler baskets, straps and locks
Price: $125 to $450
“Our original coolers were designed to keep supplies cold for Grand Canyon excursions, lasting weeks in temperatures above 100 degrees,” says Leah Heffelfinger, marketing coordinator. The Canyon expedition coolers are Interagency Grizzly Bear Certified, and Heffelfinger says they cost up to 46 percent less than the leading competitors.
“A hot tub dealer would enjoy a variety of sizes and streamlined designs,” Heffelfinger says. “Our coolers look great and can even be used as a sturdy step up to a hot tub platform with the addition of our AquaTraction Pads.”
Products: Tundra Coolers (sizes from 14-can to 350-quart), Tank Cooler for kegs or drinks, Hopper portable cooler, waterproof Panga duffle cooler, Rambler tumblers, Loadout utility bucket, a series of accessories
Price: $200 to $1,300 for the Tundra
Tundra and Roadie coolers are rotomolded, designed to keep ice longer by pumping them with more than twice the insulation of most ordinary ice chests, its website says. The Tundra offers up to 3 inches of polyurethane foam insulation, combine with a freezer-sealing gasket.
Hogan says he chose to offer Yeti coolers because he believes them to be best of breed. “A friend told me they were flying off the shelves,” he recalls. “Demand was super high in the beginning. It’s slowed some, but they’re constantly coming out with new things, so it’s a great brand.”