One of the most common challenges faced by small gym owners is customer retention. In order to help small gym owners improve customer service and retention, there must be effort paid to creating good relationships. A Harvard study has shown that retaining an existing customer is 5-25 times less expensive than acquiring a new one. Therefore, it is imperative to work on your customer retention strategies as a small gym owner.
Below are 5 easy tips to keep your members coming back every month:
Personalizing each members' gym experience to help small gym owners improve customer service
People love feeling pampered and taken care of and gym members are not an exception. Making each member feel valued and offering them a personalized user experience is paramount to retaining them. As a gym owner, it is important to know each member's personal needs and goals by getting to know them so you can deliver what they want. This can be done through the traditional means of collecting data or the more recent methods.
With access to first-hand data from each member, you are on the right path to customer retention. First-hand data like body metrics can be acquired from each member when they sign up for the gym's membership.
With this data, you can determine each member's purchasing habit and get to know their favorite product so you can have it waiting at the reception once they are done with their workout. This helps them feel like you are paying special attention to their needs therefore making them attached to the gym.
Also, sending personalized messages and postcards also makes a huge difference in improving signups. Additionally, tracking clients’ milestones and providing extra motivation as well as congratulatory messages through the gym's app also helps personalize user experience which leads to a higher retention rate.
Invest in equipment
Nobody enjoys having to wait over 30 minutes to use a treadmill and this could cause them to leave as they have other commitments. This could be avoided by investing in equipment members use the most. To keep track of the usage rate of each equipment, tracking systems can be installed in each to determine the ones that are used mostly.
You can also get this information through an online survey or the gym's app. For example, the tracking system could show that treadmills and squat racks are always in use while most of the other machines do not cater to a bulk of your members. You could be able to swap out the equipment that does not get a lot of usage and exchange them for new treadmills and squat racks with your equipment supplier or another gym that needs them.
Have them installed so your members can have more equipment to train with and also reduce waiting time during peak hours can help improve retention rate. This is a small, but effective ide to help small gym owners improve customer service.
Have a community gym
Another great idea for improving your gym's retention rate is by turning it into a community. Research has shown that about one-third of gym members are more interested in group fitness activities than individual classes. This can be leveraged on by organizing competitions and challenges within the gym.
You could create daily, weekly, monthly or yearly challenges with exciting rewards to keep members on their toes and make the activities more interesting. Nobody would want to miss out on the thrill so they keep renewing their memberships till the challenges are over.
This also helps improve members' accountability and dedication as entering challenges makes them not only accountable to themselves but to others as well. Having fun group activities also encourages members to invite their family and friends to partake in their workout challenges. You could also offer discounts for group classes to encourage members to invite their friends and family.
Create a Self-service platform
Gym members have enquiries and issues arising from time to time which needs attention. Having to wait long queues at the gym could be frustrating and time-consuming so it is important to integrate self-servicing tools into your systems so members can solve some if not all issues through these tools without having to wait a line at the reception.
Having a mobile app will also help members take online surveys, make payments, shop gym accessories, record milestones and manage their account with the gym by themselves. The ease of operation offered by your gym would set them at ease thereby retaining them as permanent members.
Segment your fitness classes
It is common knowledge that productivity is usually low in overcrowded spaces and this also applies to gyms. Having an overcrowded environment is not conducive for a lot of members as the available space is barely enough for certain exercises and the room gets stuffy and uncomfortable which could make clients cancel their memberships thereby lowering retention rate.
This can be avoided by segmenting all members into classes for a better exercise experience. Having classes limits the number of members to be trained at a time and this allows the trainer to monitor each class member closely and deliver personalized service to them. Also, breaking up into classes provides insights into which workout regime and trainers members are more interested in so marketing efforts can be directed towards that direction.
Also, with this system, lapses in equipment numbers might not be very visible as the members of each class are lower thereby making equipment available to all. Feedback can also be monitored better with segmented classes so members' needs can be attended to meticulously to be able to retain them.
It is important to reduce customer churn rate in your gym to the bare minimum to increase revenue and make it consistent. It is important to enhance your members' experience and also assist them in meeting their fitness needs effectively so they do get poached by another gym and with these tips, you will be well on your way to increase your customer retention rate.