COMMON MISTAKES GYM OWNERS MAKE PT. 2

We’ve already covered five other mistakes in part 1 of common mistakes gym owners make, so here are four more mistakes made by owners and how to avoid them.

YOU FOCUS SOLELY ON MEMBERSHIPS

Yes, memberships are the lifeline of your club, however, if you remain completely focused on bringing prospects in, you will eventually lose connection with current members and you won’t give any attention to other opportunities that generate income, like your point of sale items.

Retention is just as important as signing new members, so keep current members satisfied by running special promotions and discounts on club merchandise, personal training and fitness class packages. This will help you maintain strong retention and generate more revenue at the same time. Above all, remember to find a healthy balance between prospects and current members.

YOU’RE AFRAID OF INNOVATION

The fitness industry changes all the time and if you aren’t open to change, then your club will stagger, and you’ll eventually be unable to keep up with member standards. To avoid making this mistake, keep up with fitness trends, ensure your club is active on social media, both organically and through paid advertising and above all, be open to member feedback and actually listen to what they need and want. Make sure your club is active in the community by being a part of organizations like IHRSA or Association of Fitness Studios (AFS) to gain more business insight and stay current with industry trends. 

TOO CROWDED WITH TOO MUCH EQUIPMENT

On a positive note, your fitness club is so popular that it’s overflowing with members. The harsh reality is that not only is this a common gym owner mistake, but it’s also a huge culprit for gym membership cancellations. Why would this be your fault though? Your club and business structure lack balance, with equipment, physical space and too many members to accommodate for.

For one, you know the square footage of your gym from the get-go, so unless you’re planning on expanding it, you know how much equipment can fit in it. With more members coming through your doors, more equipment seems like the best solution, but realistically, members need space to breathe and move, so as an owner, it’s your job to find the right balance between these. Keep tabs on the less popular equipment and areas of your club, so you can decide what should be subtracted to create more space.

The same thing goes for group classes and training sessions. If you’re noticing a higher count of members attending a specific class, offer that class more frequently to avoid overflow, increase traffic and up member satisfaction. The best way to gather these numbers is to pull attendance and hourly traffic reports through gym management software. Be sure to talk with your equipment vendor supplier about equipment layouts and mapping out better use of your space.

LACK OF UPKEEP

Upkeep applies to the quality of your equipment and the cleanliness of your club. If you’re not mindful about these things, your retention will suffer. Machines like treadmills and ellipticals break down all the time. Although the wear and tear are not your fault, a common mistake among owners is allowing these issues to linger.

Not only does this prevent members from using your machines, but the lack of proactivity devalues your memberships and gym. This applies to the cleanliness of your club as well, and dirty facilities are a huge culprit to membership cancellations.

You care about your club, so constantly taking care of it is vital to reducing attrition. To make yourself more aware of possible upkeep issues, refer to our Daily Service Notes–a report that allows ASF to transfer member feedback to owners and learn more about how to maintain a clean facility here.

3 REASONS TO USE POINT OF SALE SOFTWARE

Selling memberships and products is the lifeline of any fitness business and adding gym management software like Point of Sale and Inventory Management into the mix is imperative to handling those tasks. Here are a few reasons why owners need both.  

1. INCREASES REVENUE & BUSINESS ENGAGEMENT

The whole purpose of running a gym or fitness club is to sell memberships, fitness gear and generate more income, especially for services that can’t be physically displayed in gyms. Point of Sale is a must-have tool that brings more attention to extra club add-ons like child care, spray tanning, towel service and massages.

Through accurate inventory tracking and reporting, gym owners can detect which services and items they sell most of, so they know what to order more of and perhaps where they should consider decreasing retail prices or running promotions. With a higher understanding of these strengths and weaknesses, owners and their staff have better chances of upping business engagement and generating more club revenue.

2. TRACKS & ORGANIZES CLUB INVENTORY

Organization is key to running a successful gym or fitness club. With the use of Point of Sale and Inventory Management, owners can track and organize club merchandise all in one. The convenient layout of both include custom categories, sub-categories and product images to make it easy for staff to find items while completing transactions and for owners to better track their merchandise. By simply clicking on an image, Inventory Management will show product quantity, purchase history, the cost of the item and the vendor, while Point of Sale will instantly add an item to checkout.

Owners can also adjust retail prices for special club promotions and events while also renaming products and updating how many more of a selected item they wish to order, simplifying the tracking process and ensuring all staff is on the same page. Larger gyms and fitness clubs with higher sales traffic, more employees and multiple locations can especially benefit from Point of Sale and Inventory Management, along with Martial Arts schools to provide and track uniforms for their students.

3. EASY-TO-USE TIME-SAVERS

Point of Sale and Inventory Management can be accessed anywhere and on any device. While a staff member is ringing up an item for a member through the Point of Sale interface on a front desk computer, a club owner can be updating inventory counts with the touch of a finger through Inventory Management on an iPad, tablet or smart phone, eliminating unnecessary spreadsheets and steps. Owners can conveniently scan item descriptions and easily search categories and sub-categories to access product information faster. Both applications save time and stress, increase efficiency and ultimately simplify daily club operations for everyone.

BOTTOM LINE

Point of Sale and Inventory Management applications work simultaneously, like yin and yang. Without both, owners lack organization and proper club functionality, ultimately losing overall business engagement. The combination of both is as simple as making quick transactions, then giving owners the ability to instantly update their inventory after finalizing those transactions. Being able to both sell and track various products seamlessly makes for an all-in-one stronger business model for gyms and fitness clubs, big or small.

Learn more about ASF’s Point of Sale and Inventory Management applications and request a demo here

DIGITAL WELLNESS: IS IT WELL FOR US?

We live in a world surrounded by screens while we spend our mornings hashtagging our breakfasts on social media and taking selfies of our gains at the gym. We’re adapting to behaviors that have become social norms, where receiving more “likes” on platforms like Facebook and Instagram are now personal achievements that we feel instant gratification from.

Some might argue that our online lives could be destructive to real life, introducing possible negative effects on body image and self-esteem, however, digital wellness is opening doors for both owners and members, bringing people together with common goals through a simple hashtag, offering members more fitness knowledge and generating opportunities for more club revenue.

HEALTHY FOR MEMBERS, HEALTHY FOR BUSINESS

Fitness is just as mental as it is physical and taking advantage of digital wellness is a quick and effective way to keep members motivated and maintain healthy retention. While members stay busy running on treadmills and posting their yoga photos to Instagram, owners can keep a library of digital blogs and articles that focus on different workouts, healthy recipes and wellness tips for members to reference. Owners can offer yoga classes and other events that are geared toward stress relief and wellness, providing members with more value and generating more revenue at the same time.

MORE THAN JUST APPEARANCE

We have the preconceived notion to exercise strictly for weight loss, so we look thinner, but then we forget about the positive impact fitness has on overall health and wellness. Even though weight loss is a common goal among millions of people and physical appearance is directly linked to confidence, it’s important for owners to assure their members that it’s not the only reason to purchase a gym membership. Wellness is about much more than what we see on the outside.

Specific body types and looks are constantly being broadcasted online, on television and social media, convincing both men and women that they have to look a certain way to achieve happiness. Technology isn’t the culprit here–we are. Health club owners and fitness professionals are direct influencers of this epidemic, which is why it’s imperative for them to use technology as a tool to spread positivity by encompassing every aspect of fitness and wellness, not just appearance.

Anything posted online has potential to spread like wildfire. It’s up to the professionals in the industry to make sure what’s being showcased isn’t toxic to their consumers.

OPPORTUNITIES FOR OWNERS

Luckily, social media has given owners opportunities to boost member confidence and increase revenue in the process. Through simple posts and accurate hashtagging, owners are able to share progress and transformation photos on their social media platforms, celebrating member accomplishments and more importantly, praising their none-scale victories.

Club owners can instantly motivate their members through positive sayings, quotes of encouragement and get members excited about exercise and how healthy it makes them feel. Personal trainers and class instructors can go beyond teaching by empathizing with members, offering compassion and listening to them during moments of frustration or discouragement.

They can give encouraging advice in person and online, comment on their social media posts and share them to applaud their triumphs. Building and maintaining these business-to-consumer relationships on and offline will only continue to help gyms and health clubs flourish.  

BOTTOM LINE

In this digital age, how members feel and perceive themselves is a direct result of what they consume online. Keeping up with digital and wellness trends as an owner can only help members in the long run. To answer the question, “is digital wellness well for us?” Yes. It’s an open door to fade out negativity surrounding “ideal” body images and shift focus to all areas of fitness and what being healthy truly means, putting more revenue in an owner’s pocket.