CONTENT BROUGHT TO YOU BY: ShapeNet Software
When it comes to choosing the right software to manage your business, it can be confusing deciding what solution will be the right fit. A good starting place is to first determine what your business and clients need to be successful. Let’s start with your club and the software capabilities you will want to have.
1. Keep track of your funds. Nearly all club operators need to manage multiple revenue streams. The ability to successfully track and manage your income is the lifeblood of your business. For many club operators, having a software provider that can aid in this process is an added benefit. Having an integrated billing solution can reduce your costs and allow your staff to concentrate on the core of your business: your members. Look for providers that offer CCAUS or Credit Card Auto Updater Service. This automated service updates your members' major credit cards when they expire or are replaced. Your staff does not need to spend time tracking down the updated information, meaning this service will maximize your billing runs.
2. Keep in touch with your members. The software you choose needs to be able to handle the additional services that your business offers to your members. This includes scheduling, billing and marketing. Automated features can be helpful, such as text and email reminders for appointments, as well as tools to keep members informed of new services or even identifying members who have not taken advantage of a particular service. Effectively managing and promoting these critical areas of income will allow these much-needed ancillary profit centers to grow with minimal effort from your staff.
3. Ensure remote access. Find out if you and your staff can have access to the software interface from anywhere. This has become an invaluable asset for all club operators and members. Club owners and operators need to be able to see a snapshot of their business from any place at any time. From running reports to evaluating trends, having access to this information remotely is key.
The ability to take your club to outside events will also accelerate the sales process and increase your bottom line. This includes being able to sign up new members or register prospects into your database from a tablet or other mobile device. Complement that process with paperless digital contracts that can be digitally signed and stored, saving you time and money.
4. Ensure website integration. Every club operator needs to allow new members to join their club online through their website. Also, operators should look for software providers that allow club prospects to register for a free trial and feed that information directly into their customer relationship management software.
5. Provide flexibility to your members. Your members already shop and bank online. Having a digital member portal or member self-service tool will allow them the flexibility of managing their account in addition to buying and scheduling services, upgrading their membership and referring their friends. These member self-service tools can take the burden off your staff and allow your members the freedom to purchase and schedule services at their convenience.
Mobile apps have also become a necessity. To help your club’s members, you can provide a mobile app that they can use to access personal workout plans and track their nutrition and exercising, etc. The mobile app can enhance the members’ overall user experience and offer you helpful options for checking in, scheduling classes, coaching users and more. Look for providers that have integrated and branded solutions for your business needs.
6. Keep track of your data. Getting members through the door, selling your products, and tracking usage and attendance, etc., are all table stakes in today’s world. Some software providers are starting to develop advancef features such as the abilities to track and store health profiles and assess fitness data. It can be helpful to allow your trainers to make notes and recommend workouts outside of scheduled appointments. Collecting data from wearable devices and connected equipment, and then feeding this data directly into the software platform, is also vital. Ultimately, you can feed this data back to members and clients through the member portal or the club's branded mobile app. These added features keep members engaged with their fitness plans and keep them focused on meeting their goals and adding to the lifetime value of their membership.
In summary, you have many choices in your search for good management software. But in order to keep it simple, seek out software that can help you get new members, keep those you already have, manage billing and cancellations, as well as offer member self-service functionality. Look for a system that gives you the information you need to track trends and manage your business with flexible and intelligent reporting. These advanced reporting options and key performance indicators will keep you on top of your business and moving forward.
Bruce Painter is director of sales at ShapeNet Software. He has more than 20 years of experience in the health and fitness space. Throughout his career, he has worked with thousands of health club owners, operators and their staff members, providing and recommending technology and billing solutions for their businesses. Since 2002, ShapeNet has been providing enterprise SaaS solutions to a variety of health and fitness centers. This includes small- to medium-sized service facilities, multi-site locations and chains, and complex wellness centers. ShapNet's full suite of integrated technology solutions caters to the business needs of clubs and the service side with members. This includes billing members, selling products and services, member self-service solutions, scheduling sessions online or through a club branded app, maintaining up-to-date member health profiles and much more. Learn more at www.shapenetsoftware.com.