Retention of clients is a key metric for all businesses to track. And of course, it's even more significant for anyone who owns a gym. The ideal is to have a continual flow of new clients coming through the gym, they fall in love with you and they stay forever. Peace of cake right? Not really.
So, what are the reasons that make people cancel their memberships? One is obviously poor customer service, but you don't give poor customer service, so we'll move on. Another is a toxic gym culture and conflicts between members. Again, that's not happening at your gym so we'll skip that one too. So, what are the hidden factors then? You know, the ones that you know are affecting your business but you just can't put your finger on them. Let's talk about one really important one below.
As you can imagine, after several years in this game, we've dealt with quite a few gym owners. This has given us good insight on some trends. The issue that we are going to talk about today is when should you top up or replace your equipment in your gym and how does that affect to retention rate?
Okay, straight talk. There are a lot of gyms out there that simply don’t have a plan to replace equipment at regular intervals or to invest in more equipment as they need it. Most are in that 3-5 year mark of business and will say they just haven't had the time or the cash to replace equipment or top up their stock. There is usually a common theme for these businesses: leads for new clients are slowing down and retention rate is declining too. They are almost at their ideal membership cap but just can't get those last few members to be comfortable. They are always hunting for 20-30 more members to get to their ideal membership number but what they may not realise is that the poor state of their equipment or not having enough equipment is causing a couple of people a week to walk out the door. That's an easy fix. See below.
No explanation needed here. Give your gear a good wipe down at least a couple times a month. Of course, once a week is better. And once a day is next level cleaning but it's worth it. The top gyms we've seen have a daily cleaning regime in place.
Again, pretty straight forward here. Start the audit with the gear you use everyday. Then check out the gear you use once a week. And finally, audit the gear you only use once in a while, to see what condition it is in. Create a business rule that let's you make black and white decisions on what to replace too, i.e., if a bumper has cracks longer than 50mm, replace it; if not, keep it. Make it easy on yourself so you can make good business decisions quickly. Lastly, list the gear you need to replace and move on to the next step.
Here at Again Faster we'll offer a good price on packages and if you've dealt with us before, you know that the more you buy from us the better your rebate is! It won't take us too long to knock you up a new quote on your replacement gear and of course if you need finance, we can help with that too.
Something else that will help you is our bumper trade-in program. In a nutshell, we'll offer you an awesome discount on new bumpers for your gym and take your old bumpers off your hands too – as long as they are in useable condition. With our OPEX finance option, we can help you get new bumpers for your gym every three years! Now that sounds awesome, doesn't it? Check out our trade-in program here >>
As you are doing your audit, also think about those times in class when you are stretched to make sure every client has the gear they need to perform the work out. If a client is paying a couple hundred dollars a month for a membership and they must share equipment or use sub-par equipment regularly, it won't be long till they start looking for another gym in the area.
Staying on top of this is critical for your gym. And a regular audit process will keep your finger on the pulse so you can revive your gear before it dies!
Okay, let's get back to retention. If you are losing a couple members a month - that could be 20 to 40 members a year – that’s a lot of cash walking out the door! Since it's not a customer service or gym culture issue, there's a good chance ratty equipment or clients having to share equipment regularly is playing a part in your loss of members.
From what we've seen over the years dealing with 100s of gyms, the gyms that continually make a plan to top up and replace their equipment with a focus on boosting retention rate generally thrive. And the gyms that don't do audits on a regular schedule and execute a plan to top up tend to never meet their potential or eventually wither and die.
After you've started your audit process, we can help you get your gear replacement and top up scheme in place. All you need to do is get in touch with us - we'll take you through the process and take care of the rest. Just click the link and give us a call or shoot us an email.
Follow these tips and you're likely to start retaining members immediately. You'll stop leaking membership fees and start running a tight ship. That's good business!