How I'd Increase Gym Revenue 40%

Arnab Raychaudhuri

How does Planet Fitness and other big box gyms make so much money? The majority of big box gyms price ultra low (as low as $10/ month!), sell to everyone and 67% memberships go unused! This model sounds crazy (and doesn't help clients get in shape) but it mints money. There's a lesson to be learned here: there are ways to make money with higher volume clients at lower membership tiers.

I've spent the last 2 years studying gyms and fitpros to understand how they operate. I've also started 3 investor backed companies that generated over 6 figures. I'll share some of the lessons I've learned in business, tech and fitness.

Business Model: Volume + Pricing

To begin, the average gym membership costs around $50 per month, and the average cost of online fitness services is approximately $20 per month. This means that if a gym can successfully offer online services to its membership base, it could increase its revenue by over 40%.

I've added a simple spreadsheet on how this would work. Feel free copy the spreadsheet to understand how it would impact your business.

Spreadsheet here.

Why would customers pay for an online membership?

In fact most of your customer already paying for an online services while going to your gym. Why not help them spend more money with you and get better results?

Step 1: Create a valuable online space

Beyond workouts a sense of community is extremely important for motivation and accountability. The best tech tools to create your community is and Zomo Fit.

Those who workout together, stick together.

In terms of content, it really depends on your workout type. For example, if you're helping people train for a marathon you can ask everyone to share their run data. Here's a few more ideas.

Step 2: Price your space with Tiers

The power of 3's is effective - small, medium, large. I'd start with an entry level, low cost community option for $10 (high volume, low cost). This goes to a more expensive, more hands on memberships.

Read more about membership tiers here

Step 3: Sell your community to your customers

The easy part is offering a way for gym rats to connect and share their stats online. I'd start with a group of 10 super customers, build out content and test. Invite new users in doubles. 10, 20, 40, 80 - until I've added everyone. This gives customers FOMO, but also gives me a chance to build a valuable space to love and use daily. A good way to get the word out is a email list, or I'd start an email list.

Here's how I'd sell the new online space:

  • Use an existing email list, or create one.
  • Ask for constant feedback on ways to improve the space
  • Dedicate a trainer to admin the space - they don't need to be onsite
  • Slowly grow the space to make sure there's time to test it
  • Once it's public, QR codes at the gym

I hope this helps your gym!