You may have recently found a new brand in the fishing lure game – Googan Baits or Googan Squad lures. They began with 5 soft plastic lures but have grown into selling almost all bass fishing lures. Soft plastics, crankbaits, frogs, jigs, you name it. And they’re available at some major fishing retailers like Bass Pro Shops.
For those who don’t know, the Googan Squad is a group of YouTube fisherman who banded together to create content and eventually start a fishing empire. And they’ve been pretty successful at doing so. They have rods, reels, a headquarters, and now have partnered with Catch Co. on a whole line of baits. They market to a younger fishing audience which makes them somewhat controversial in the fishing field. But teaching a young generation to enjoy a worthwhile pastime outdoors is pretty okay in my book.
This will be an over-arching reviewing of their branded baits as a whole as I obviously cannot get into every single lure they have on the market. It’s more a question if they can be a trusted brand in the fishing industry? Can they join the likes of Strike King as a solid manufacturer of everything bass fishing? Or are they a gimmick built of branding? And are they worth the money you spend on them?
To save you from the entire article – the short answer is yes Googan Baits/Squad can be a trusted manufacturer for all of your lures. They aren’t a gimmick. They all will catch bass. But are they worth the money?
Packaging for Googan Baits
Perhaps nothing frustrates me more than spending a little more on good soft plastics only for them to come loosely packaged in a bag. The tails of worms get bent, the claws of craws get turned, and a swimbait will never swim right after being squished at the bottom of a bait bin.
So while it may be a minor consideration, the fact that googan soft plastics come in a good durable clamshell that keeps their form perfect is a good start. Even after opening and closing several times I found all baits to stay in their clamshell and it never tore. They also easily opened and closed but kept baits protected.
Hardbait and other packaging is less important as most people keep lures in tackle boxes or cases, but they had sturdy construction and kept baits safe as well. I have never opened a googan bait and found it was damaged. Their buzzbaits also came with a wire holder to keep the light wire from getting damaged – a nice addition.
Overall, I found the packaging to be top notch for all Googan baits and it really puts a good foot forward for me recommending them.
Colors for Googan Baits
Something else you’ll notice when looking at Googan Baits on the shelves is that they come in a good variety of fish catching colors.
Their soft plastics come in the usual suspects – variations of greens browns and black with flake and no flake options mixed in. You might not be overwhelmed by color options, but they cover the ones that are known to catch bass. So this is certainly an area they can grow, but you won’t find yourself severely limited by the color options either.
Crankbaits, spinnerbaits, and all other hardbaits are similar. You’ll find your craw-mimicking colors and a variety of shad or baitfish colors. They also offer a bluegill color for those pond fisherman who don’t fish in waters with baitfish aplenty which is a good offering, even though more in this area would be nice. Especially since they target younger anglers who often can’t afford boats and the like and only fish ponds. But they have the mainstays you’ll find in any fisherman’s tackle box. They’re also all quality paint jobs that look as good or better than any competitor at their price.
One more unique offering which I did enjoy seeing is their Ghost Gill and Cash Craw, which have a more clear or transparent body. I haven’t used them widely enough to recommend or not, but it’s nice to see something a little different from the company instead of hitting colors everyone knows and uses already.
One area I would like to see some improvement is in their skirt options for jigs and spinnerbaits. Again, your mainstays are here but they don’t vary widely and I would like to see some different options for multiple situations. But as a growing company just starting out, it’s reasonable.
So color options are solid, but nothing to write home about. Some other mainstay companies have them beat here in my opinion, but I’m sure over time Googans’ will introduce more colors to keep up with the competition.
Action of Googan Baits
The real question to most baits that sets them apart is if they move in the water and entice bass into biting. I have not used every bait so this is not intended to speak for all, but for those that I have tested.
Googan worms are made with a shell-shaped body that is not completely unique to their brand but not often seen on the market. According to their packaging, it creates an action and vibration unlike any other soft plastic worm. Did I notice an action like no other? No. And I didn’t get crazy bites that made me feel like it’s vibration was unmatched. I also don’t believe that vibration is a major factor in getting fish to bite worms.
But it does have a good action that I was very pleased with. When dropshotting the drag-n-drop worm I could make the tail shimmy with just slight twitches like it’s supposed to. And fish seemed to like the action as well. So I do approve of the worm action, even if unsurprisingly it isn’t revolutionary.
Their craw-style and creature style baits also have elongated claws with raised edges which leads to a good action in the water that I found noticeably better than some competitors. I found their action very similar to the rage-tail products that I swear by. So I was impressed here, even if not completely original it was noticeably above average. The bandito bug in particular got my attention for its movement and I had good success with it.
Hard baits and other
Googans offer a variety of hard bait options including flat-sided crankbaits with wide wobbles, deep divers, squarebills, jerkbaits, etc. I found all crankbaits to run well out of the box and straight. Some crankbaits tend to sit sideways or hunt in one direction. I didn’t find that with the few I have tested. They all ran true right out of the box.
The rattles in their flat sided crank were also extremely loud, which depending on your position can be a good or bad thing. Personally, I liked the loud rattle to match the wide wobble it had. If their jerkbaits include a similar rattle I would very much like to test them soon.
I tested the Googan buzzbait and found that it created that sound known and loved so well, though it wasn’t the noisiest buzzbait I’ve ever heard. I admittedly have not tested all their hard baits, as mentioned before, but see no reason based from my experiences that they wouldn’t run well out of the box. Their frogs walked, though not very easily. I haven’t tried spinnerbaits to have an opinion, but would expect they spin as well as any other.
Overall, I found the action on all Googan lures to at least be acceptable and in other cases better than expected. They will certainly catch fish and I don’t believe any would disappoint a fisherman.
Durability of Googan Baits
Most baits will work well out of the box though. The real question is how long they hold up?
Most soft plastics aren’t meant to last forever. But you still want them to last more than just a couple fish. I found the googan baits to hit a good level of durability, while being soft enough to create the action needed to get bites. Baits usually lasted several fish and weren’t pulled off by bluegill nibbling at the tails. They are not as durable as an elaztech or similar technology, but in comparison to other soft plastics I found them tough. I even think they are more durable than rage tail products which I find to be their biggest competitor for my attention.
Hard baits and other
Hard baits on the other hand should last years, not just a few fish. I have had googan baits for a short time, but I did purposefully run them into rocks and beat them enough to see if there were obvious flaws in durability. I was unable to find any.
The buzzbait skirt stayed on, which I usually have issues with on lesser brands. Hooks stayed sharp, expected as Mustad is a pretty solid brand for hooks. I imagine over time they would wear more quickly than higher-end brands like Gamakatsu, but again you’re getting what you pay for. The paint job on the crankbaits did not chip and the eyes (which I always seem to lose) stayed on.
Overall, I will need more time with googan baits to give a real durability rating. I will be sure to update this article as that happens. But I don’t see any obvious flaws that would make me worried about their durability or longevity. Feel assured that they will last as long as any other brand and won’t deteriorate.
Other things I liked about Googan Baits
Before getting into price and whether these are worth the money, there were a few other things I liked about the baits I wanted to mention. Their soft plastics are infused with scent that is immediately noticeable after you pull them out of the packaging. And it seems to last for a while as well if you leave the baits in the clamshell. Scent is something a lot of people overlook, but can help you catch bass when the going gets tough and they don’t want to eat. Even if its just hiding the human scent, it’s a nice feature to add.
Their crankbaits also are printed on the bottom with their depth ranges which I found extremely helpful. Not all baits do this and I’m not sure why. I don’t know how many crankbaits I’ve pulled out of a box and found it went deeper or shallower than I thought. Having the range printed right on the bait is just a helpful bit of information for fisherman that the fish will never see.
Price for Googan Baits
All in all, I found all of the googan baits I used to be quality. They caught fish, didn’t degrade, have nice features and were overall above my expectations. So the recommendation is there. But the real question is always: are they worth what you’re paying for them?
I’ll go ahead and say I personally think they’re a little too expensive.
The Googan soft plastics come in at $6 when not on sale which isn’t a bad price. But frankly you can get better baits for less. Almost all zoom products will come in well under and work almost as well. Though I will admit the clamshell packaging Googan Baits has is a nice addition, and makes it worth the difference to me. But then there are Strike King’s rage tail products, which have an extremely similar design, years of proven excellence, more colors, clamshell packaging, and come in 50 cents cheaper. Which is a minor difference, but when buying lots of plastics it adds up.
Googan hard baits vary in price points but are generally on the higher end of the mainstream competitors. For example, the Strike King KVD 1.5 squarebill is $2 less than the Googan banger squarebill, but the Googan spinnerbait is cheaper than the Strike King spinnerbaits. Then the klutch lipless by Googans is more expensive than the Strike King Redeye Shad – so it varies. But I found most prices for the Googan hardbaits to be just above the competition without necessarily giving any performance upgrades that I could notice.
They aren’t outlandishly expensive in any way, but in almost all cases I can find a bait a few dollars less that I believe will work just as well and maybe have other upsides like more color options or a better history of catching fish. That is of course assuming you are not a Karls Club Member. If you are and cant get the discount offered – I actually believe these are well worth buying and a steal at the price. But, you have to figure in the club membership.
So given all that information, would I recommend using Googan Squad baits? If you are newer to fishing, want a solid brand you can depend on, or don’t mind spending an extra dollar here or there, then I actually would. I can’t say any of the baits I tested disappointed me with their action or performance. They also had great paint jobs, were made from good quality materials, and I really liked their packaging. I would have no issues using Googan Squad as my main brand of baits in the future.
But if you really want to delve into baits or get the most bang for your buck, there are options as good for less money. There was nothing so revolutionary in their baits that I found them superior to some other brands I know and love. You also won’t get anything that you can’t find somewhere else. So for advanced fishermen or penny-pinchers, they aren’t necessarily worth the price in my opinion.
But I can’t say I was at all disappointed and they will be staying in my box. The drag-n-drop worm in particular I liked as I dropshot fish often, so may even purchase more into the future. The bandito bug also had a great action and was a real fish catcher. I’ll keep using their flat-sided banger as my flat side crankbait too with it’s loud rattle. I think they are a solid brand here to stay. They definitely have more than just the Googans promoting them. They really can catch bass!