The primary source of revenue for a fitness business is memberships. Tracking down leads, converting them into members, and retaining them long term is the bread and butter of running a successful fitness business. There’s no doubt about it; growing your gym membership base and your monthly recurring revenue is absolutely key to your survival as a business.
Why Other Revenue Streams are Important
However the reality is that gyms and fitness studios can’t survive on revenue from memberships alone. In The Glofox Ultimate Guide to Opening a Gym, we discussed how important it is to have other revenue streams to build your business. The most successful studios diversify into different revenue streams alongside raising revenue through gym membership sales. When it comes to how to increase gym revenue; the top studios are expanding beyond just offering classes and have now developed into a one-stop-shop for all things fitness related.
To increase profit margins for your business, you need to get creative and think of additional ways to deliver offerings of real value to both existing and potential gym members. This additional revenue is typically known as ancillary revenue.
Ancillary revenue gives you way more than just a profit boost and it’s one of the best ways to increase your overall revenue. Some of the things that we will be discussing in this article will help boost your marketing efforts. It will also make your fitness business an all-round center for health and wellness rather than just a gym. All of the ideas outlined below are simple to implement and once you get started, you’ll find more inspiration on ways to increase your ancillary revenue.
1. Fitness Apparel
Athleisure and activewear have taken over the apparel industry in recent years, and the numbers don’t lie. It currently represents 24% of total industry sales, and this number is expected to grow in 2019. It is predicted that Athleisure will be an $83 billion market by 2020.
Looking around, it’s clear that wearing clothes suited for both casual and workout wear is becoming more popular. There’s no better time than now to invest in branded apparel for your studio or gym business. People want to express the fact that they are into health and fitness and one of the easiest ways they can do this is through what they wear.
Sell your chosen gym gear through your website and on-site in your studio if possible, then you can market it through your social media channels. Having your trainers wear these branded clothes during sessions is also an easy way to market the products and increase sales. While instantly Instagrammable activewear is on-trend; it’s also important to focus on practical clothing. Items like sports bras, tactical tees, and towels are all small necessities and your members will appreciate having the choice of both practical and fashionable items.
Take a look at this great example from Glofox customer Synergy Fitness who sell apparel with their distinct branding that buyers can personalize themselves. The knock-on effect of this is that the wearers become walking billboards for your gym.
Who needs Facebook Ads if you have that!
2. Corporate Programmes
As we have seen with the statistics on workout gear, exercise is becoming a huge part of our everyday lives. More now than ever, employers are investing in the health and wellness of their employees to increase their productivity and general well being.
Companies will often partner up with a local studio that will run classes exclusively for their employees, or even build studios within their office space. In the US, a chain of fitness studios called Life Time has gone a step further by bringing the office into the studio by offering WeWork style workspaces and conference facilities.
Listed as one of our significant fitness trends for 2019, fitness in the workplace will be popular in the coming year, with more companies putting a focus on a corporate wellness strategy. For your fitness business, it is a prime opportunity for you to add a valuable revenue stream. You don’t have to be based in a dense business area of a major city. Even if you are in a smaller urban area, you should reach out to local businesses to see if they are interested in offering classes to their employees.
There are two main ways you can do this. The first way is to send out one of your trainers to run classes on-site. The second way is to host classes in your studio for employees. This is especially beneficial for generating revenue between 9 am and 5 pm which is typically seen as a quieter time for gyms – because everyone is at work!
As with any of the other revenue streams we have discussed, there is also the added benefit of an excellent marketing opportunity. Think of it this way – by running corporate classes you are giving the company’s employees a taste of what your studio has to offer. This gives you the opportunity to convert these employees into full-time members outside of the corporate classes. Read our blog on corporate wellness ideas for fitness businesses for more information.
3. Sell Your Space
Utilizing free areas of your studio or gym is a great way to add to your revenue streams. Try renting out space to businesses for advertising. It’s worth looking at your local area and contacting businesses that are also aligned with health. Take health food stores for example; it’s likely that both your customer bases have similar interests in health, so advertising at your studio could result in more sales for their store. If you have space; consider adding a concession to your studio. You could charge rent to another well-known brand, such as a juice or smoothie franchise.
Make sure you conduct some research with your members to establish whether they’d appreciate the concession, so you can get a rough idea on sales. If you’re unsure if you want to commit your gym or studio to this full-time, start slow by renting the space as a pop-up. This way, you can rent the space to different brands on a short term basis and see which variety brings in the most sales, before committing to a full-time concession. Keeping the pop-ups varied will also keep your members interested to check out what’s new in the space!
4. Health Supplements
Supplements are another area you can make a killing in. Dedicated sports and health supplement stores are popping up everywhere as people are looking to fuel their workout the best way they can.
Set up a small section in the reception area of your gym, so your members don’t have to waste time going to a specialized store to pick up what they need. You could even opt for a vending machine to make sales an even speedier process for your members. As with fitness apparel, you can also sell these products through your website.
If you find success in this then maybe think of using a white label supplement company that will put your branding on the bottle. It makes sense to promote own brand products that can help improve the health and wellbeing of your members and in turn building their trust in you.
Events are a great way to add a revenue stream early on in your business. Don’t think that you have to put on something large and extravagant for the first event. Focus on smaller events that give value to the attendees. The benefit of putting on events is that gets you and your members out of the class space and allows for a more relaxed environment where you can get to know them better.
Definitely open these events up to the general public. Not only will you get in extra revenue from ticket sales, but you’ll introduce new people to your business outside of the intimidating studio environment. Here are 14 great gym event ideas you can run in your own fitness business.
We have talked about workshops before as a way to boost acquisition and retention and as a corporate wellness program idea and that’s because time and time again, workshops are a great concept to offer your clients. The more knowledge and tools your members have, the more likely they are to reach and exceed their goals. Holding a workshop for a small group is also a good test and practice for putting on a larger event. The topics you cover could be focused on anything health-related; exercise, weight loss, tips for a healthy lifestyle, etc. Collect some ideas from your members on what they’d like from a workshop, this could be as simple as sending out a quick email survey, or having hard copies at your reception. This way, you’ll be able to see which workshop would get the most interest and attendance.
As we talked about in our blog on 4 ways to work nutrition into your fitness business, what your members eat plays a large part in helping them hit their goals. When you are selling a person a membership, you should always be thinking, “How can I upsell this?” By offering them precise nutrition plans they can follow you are instantly adding more value to the member experience.
Look into using the services of a freelance nutritionist. This will put real weight behind the plans that you are selling, and your members will be more likely to buy them. They will also value the convenience of having this done for them in their studio. Members that need extra help when it comes to nutrition may look elsewhere. With your gym or studio, your mission should be to provide an all-around health and wellness experience.
8. Fitness Assessments
Offering fitness testing or body composition assessments for a small fee is an easy way to add to your revenue streams. A fitness test will involve a trainer monitoring a member while they complete some assessments. Consider complementing one of these paid assessments with a free personal trainer session, so the member feels like they’re getting good value for service. For body composition, you could opt to kit your studio out with an analyzer. This method offers convenience to your members, as they can measure themselves on the machine as and when it suits them. You can set these up to require a code, so clients can pay at your main reception to access the code when they would like to conduct a measurement.
Other Revenue Streams
We have gone through some of the main streams you can use to increase revenue for your fitness business. However, there are plenty of other ways to help with this. One way is to run personal training on the side by either paying an hourly rate to the personal trainer and collect the revenue from the client or by renting part of your studio space to the personal trainer directly.
Another area you should be focusing on when it comes to products is smaller items that help enhance your members’ experience when they are in your facility. These can be things like headphones, water bottles, batteries, and locks to keep valuables safe. Small toiletries are a great example of this, it’s handy to have access to these if a member forgets their own.
Finally, a method that has become extremely popular in recent years is online coaching. Good quality cameras have become less expensive so workouts and tutorials can easily be recorded and uploaded. By running online coaching, you can reach a new audience and generate revenue outside your local area.
Some of the tips may seem obvious, but hopefully, the points covered will help you think of new ways to add additional revenue streams to your business.