Running your group fitness business efficiently requires having the right software and support on your side. When you’re too busy managing constant admin, dealing with messy payments, and organizing your customers, it can become impossible to deliver the service your members deserve. Group fitness management software with a built-in booking system, CRM, and payment processing is designed to give you full control of your business on top of streamlining your everyday tasks.
However as the fitness industry and market has grown tremendously over the past few years, so has the number of management software options. Finding the right solution to manage your group fitness business can be tricky, which is why our friends at TeamUp have shared their tips on finding the right software for your gym or studio. When looking at your group exercise checklist of things your business needs to deliver the best experience, you’ll want to make sure having the best gym management software is high on your list.
What is Management Software and What Does it Include?
Management software is a system that can help you manage the ins and outs of your fitness business. Built with tools and features to allow you to run all the aspects of your business in one place, gym management software is the number one resource successful fitness gyms and studios use to manage their services and customers.
But as mentioned, there are now dozens of management software systems available to group fitness businesses. And while they may appear similar on the outside and in what they offer and can enable you to do, the various software solutions and systems available to gyms and studios can be very different. Whether in how they are built, what their primary features are, and even their pricing and plans, having all the information in front of you can help you narrow down your choices, not to mention you must first figure out what you want your software to help you do.
Choosing the Right Gym Management Software for Your Group Fitness Business
To help you figure out how to choose the right gym management software for your fitness business, here is a simple exercise you can do to get started. Following these steps, you can conclude what your fitness management software needs are and which is the right solution to help you run the best version of your business.
Step 1: Identify the Purposes You Need Your Software to Serve
Whether you are looking for a way to give members a place to book online, run a hybrid service, or a system that can help you manage your staff and customers in one place, knowing what you want out of your software can help you eliminate some early options. Make a list of each of those tasks that are vital to the success of your business, and cross off any of the software options that cannot support or manage your essential needs.
Step 2: Evaluate Which Management Software Will Save You Time
Gaining back time to run your business is every fitness business owner’s number one goal. Even if their goal is labeled something else, at the crux is being able to have time to run their business, be there for their clients, and avoid drowning under mundane tasks such as admin. However, while many solutions say they can save you time, in the end, some can be so complex that they add to your workload rather than reduce it. If you want more time back in your day, make sure the management software you’re investigating is flexible, easy to use and navigate.
Step 3: Compare Pricing and What Each Plan Includes
While most management software will advertise that you can do it all with their solution, many hide the most essential features in pricey plans that cost more than they’re worth. Comparing the pricing and what each plan includes is an essential part of the purchasing decision. However, while some software will try to upgrade you in order to get those necessary tools, others will work with you to afford your software and provide you with the features you need. Software is an investment in the overall growth of your business, but make sure the one you have your eye on has a value that matches or supersedes the price.
Remember that when considering pricing, you should also see what else is included beyond the features and tools. Does the plan include unlimited support? Is there a free trial or free set-up period? Is there an import fee for uploading client lists or transferring data over from other software? These factors must be considered in addition to the different policies for services they consider to be essential or sell as an add-on.
Step 4: Make Sure Your Software Includes the Most Essential Tools and Then Some.
As a group fitness owner or instructor, there is a specific set of tools your software must absolutely include in order for you to run your business efficiently. That list includes online booking, reliable payment processors, a robust CRM, forms and waivers, and detailed reports.
However, depending on the type of business you run, for example, an online group fitness business that also offers personal training, you would want your software to include an online class integration, on-demand library, and one-on-one appointment scheduling. If you have a large team, you would also want to be able to manage their schedules and class load within your software.
Cross-checking the functionalities of software with your services and the tasks you typically complete manually can help you determine how fully-stacked your software is and what capabilities it will allow you to do on top of what you already do or offer.
Step 5: Check What Marketing and Growth Tools are Offered
Software that enables you to grow your group fitness business should be highly considered. While the system you choose should absolutely include the essential list of tools and features, it’s an added bonus when it also includes integrations and features that can help you market your group fitness business. As well as boost your online visibility and allow you to market your business right from within the software. When you see CRM software that integrates with tools such as Zapier, Mailchimp, Constant Contact, WordPress and similar marketing automation and platforms that’s a good sign that you’ll be able to do more than just give members a place to book with your software.
Step 6: Think About Your Customer Journey
On top of making your life easier and eliminating the stresses and hassles of running your group fitness business, you also want to consider your members and how to improve their customer experience. Software that makes the sign up and registration process quick and easy bodes well for attracting new members. A system that includes a member app where customers can manage their own memberships on the go allows them to be able to reach and access you wherever and whenever without actually having to contact you. Think about your customers’ needs and what will boost their retention and make sure the software you choose allows you to create the best customer experience and journey.
Step 7: Find Out Which Software Will Help Your Business Stand Out in Your Area
And not only stand out with marketing, but as an exemplary fitness business in your area. Fitness customers talk and referrals play a huge role in a group fitness business’ growing clientele. Software with tools, such as a customer referral system, that enable existing members to easily refer new potential members is a huge bonus that should not be ignored. Having a flexible system that allows you to track and monitor your business’ growth with detailed reports and make better business decisions will only make your business that much stronger.
To sum it up, choose gym management software that checks all the boxes.
Remember, the software is meant to make your life easier, but with so many options it can be difficult to find the best management software to elevate your business. When exploring the different software options make sure that it:
- Has all the tools and features you need to easily manage your business
- Has a price that you consider a valuable investment
- Will save you time and energy that you can put back into teaching
- Includes unlimited guidance and support that is there for you every step of the way
- Strengthens your business and enables it to grow
- Provides your customers with the best customer journey
- Helps your business stand out professionally
You don’t need to sacrifice the things that you love about running your business to do just that. Start running your business efficiently by choosing the best management software that solves your problems, meets and exceeds your needs, and helps you succeed.