Should You Stock More Treestands and Ground Blinds?

We asked veteran retailers: Do you anticipate strong treestand, ground blind and associated accessory sales this summer?

Should You Stock More Treestands and Ground Blinds?

It’s no secret that whitetails are the most popular game animal in North America. Given that fact, should you stock more treestands and ground blinds in your archery shop? We asked three veteran retailers for their 2019 predictions.


Justin Steinke

Butch’s Archery

Clintonville, Wisconsin

Lone Wolf Custom Gear’s D’Acquisto Series Hang-On Treestand

I have several reasons to anticipate a fairly strong year for selling these products. To start, Lone Wolf Custom Gear’s D’Acquisto Series Hang-On stand and climbing sticks really caught my eye at the ATA Show back in January. Both are very lightweight and ideal for mobile hunters who do same-day sets on public land. They’re fairly expensive, but dedicated public land hunters typically need only one stand-and-stick set since they remove them after each hunt, which justifies the additional expense.

I also have good feelings about the Stacked Outdoors Stackable Ladder Sticks. They’re molded-plastic climbing sticks. Their construction will reduce noise and weight during transportation.

We offer a full gamut of accessories. Things have advanced so far since the $2 bow hooks of the past. In particular, I find Hawk Hunting’s lineup of treestand accessories to be quite mind-boggling. There are so many options and concepts. The versatility in that line is pretty astonishing.

For some reason, we struggle to sell safety harnesses. In fact, we haven’t brought any into the store in 2 years, yet we still have some on the shelf. It’s kind of confusing. Of course, mine just aren’t selling.

Now, we mostly stock treestands that offer great value at affordable prices. For example, our average treestand sale is approximately $130. Most stands in that price range typically offer good quality and generous seat and platform sizes. Stands below that price range usually involve sacrifices on seat quality or comfort. Of course, higher priced stands simply don’t move as well, so we bring fewer of them into the store.

Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if ground blind sales surpass treestand sales this year. Manufacturers have delivered better concepts, more options, improved materials and more effective window systems. I also believe many crossbow hunters are prone to purchase ground blinds rather than treestands.

We’ll offer a nice mix of high-end blinds as well as good-quality $100-150 models this year. In the long run, though, I anticipate I’ll sell more of the value-priced models.


Brecht Sprouse

High Tech Outdoors & Archery

Keswick, Virginia

Summit Treestands Goliath SD Ultra Climbing Treestand

Virginia is probably quite different from the Midwest in terms of what hunters are looking for in terms of treestands. It’s difficult to find permanent places to hunt around here, so most hunters need to be mobile, which is why climbing stands are most popular here. That said, I’m a Summit fan. I like the way Summit climbing stands work, how they climb … everything. If a guy wants to buy a climber, I always recommend Summit.

I run a very small shop and sell very few treestands. My customers are pretty tight. For that reason, I don’t really keep new stands in stock.

That said, I always keep my eyes open for used treestands in perfect condition. When possible, I buy them inexpensively. I go through and inspect them to make sure nothing has been compromised or anything like that, and then I can usually turn them around fairly quick.

The biggest opponent I face with treestand sales are box stores. They can buy bulk quantities and offer stands at lower price points than a small shop. I almost always lose out to them. And when I don’t, my profit margin is so low that it’s not really worth the time. At the end of the day, I guess that’s OK, because I have a strong reputation for bow tuning.


Andy Larsen

Bwana Archery

Little Canada, Minnesota

Primos Double Bull SurroundView Ground Blind

I believe treestand sales will remain fairly stable. Technology hasn’t recently made any drastic leaps. Currently, we’re right on par with last year’s sales.

Ladder stands are quite popular here, and so are lightweight hang-ons such as the Lone Wolf line. Customers are either looking for something more or less permanent or something ultra-mobile.

In the past, we’ve tried offering $50-60 treestands, but they just don’t sell. Our area certainly supports high-end treestand sales, which is a great thing. We sell more Lone Wolf stands than any other brand. We offer options ranging from $250 up to the $400 climbers.

Ground blinds are really catching some traction these days. The new Double Bull SurroundView blinds from Primos offer so much more visibility than older models. I think that technology will persuade a few more folks to buy ground blinds, but most of my customers still prefer to be high up in a tree to keep their scent above a deer’s scent zone.

We don’t offer too much in terms of accessories. We offer some ladders, backpack straps and things like that. Beyond that, we keep it fairly simple.



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