How to prevent your gym from losing members in summer

The number of users in a gym generally drops by 30% in the summer. Despite the fact that many return in September, for some sports centres this is not enough. What comes into play when it comes to preventing users from dropping out in the summer? Loyalty and commitment to your box. We give you 5 key strategies to prevent members leaving your gym in summer.

5 Strategies to avoid membership losses at your gym in summer

1- Encouraging users to continue training in summer

One of the keys to avoid the stampede of users in your gym in summer is to change the mentality that in summer there is no need to train. You must make users aware that exercise is an activity that should be carried out all year round. Because it is more a question of health than of aesthetics.

We know that this is not something easy or something that can be changed overnight. To do so, you can include certain activities or services in your gym that little by little promote this way of thinking. This can be: nutrition or coaching services, different activities that are more than just weight training, organising excursions with the users, etc.

2- Plan outdoor activities in your gym

When you’ve been doing the same thing for a long time, you get bored, don’t you? The same thing happens to your gym users. You can’t maintain the same range of activities in summer as in winter.

In summer, the methodology of the classes and the timetable in your gym should be different, but, in addition, we recommend you to include other new activities that provide added value to your users, so that they feel more motivated to stay.

One option that people have been experiencing more and more as a result of COVID 19 is outdoor training. Have you thought about moving some of the group activities in the gym to open spaces in the surrounding area or in the centre itself?

Take advantage of the early morning or late afternoon/evening to organise group classes in nearby areas such as parks, green spaces or beaches. If the weather is good, we are sure that many of your users will sign up.

Another benefit is that you can advertise your gym to people passing through the area who are interested in the activity. This can be a good strategy to attract new users to your gym.

3- Offer discounts or promotions for the summer

A good tactic to ensure that you don’t have too many members leaving your gym in the summer is to create discounts and promotions at this time of year. There are several alternatives that you can create:

Summer offers in order to attract new users. A very common tactic in pits that are located in places with a large influx of tourists. Your regular users may drop out, but at least until September, you will be able to fill a large part of the places with tourists..

Pause subscriptions during the summer at a special rate. If cancellations are unavoidable, you can make them less painful for your wallet by offering to pause the registration of your users at a reduced price. This way, at least, you can be sure that they will come back in September.

Special activities at reduced prices. Another way to reduce the impact of the number of people leaving your gym in the summer is to offer special activities at reduced prices. This way you can have some extra income that will help you to reduce your income.

4- Be closer to your gym users

The fact that in summer there are fewer users in your gym can be a good opportunity for trainers to get to know their users better. Being quieter, they can chat and take a little interest in them and find out what their goals are, what needs they have, difficulties, class preferences…

In this way, your users will know that they have at their disposal professionals ready to help them and solve their doubts, which will increase their loyalty by making them feel at home.

5- Gamification in your gym

Summer is a time when the pace is more relaxed, so it can be a good time to innovate and offer additional value to your users by gamifying your gym.

One idea that we are sure all your users will like is competitions or tournaments.

Resawod idea: In order to improve their loyalty to the gym, you can organise a competition called “The summer challenge”. In it, users can earn points or level up by overcoming new challenges or increasing their attendance. If they succeed, you can reward them with special rewards.

As a complement to this idea, you can offer them added value such as a special summer training routine, a fitness kit or a recipe booklet of healthy meals, for example.

If the idea of gamification appeals to you, in this article you will learn what gamification is and how you can apply it in your box or gym.

Extra – The big mistake that makes you lose users in your gym in summer, not analysing your gym

As we have said before, it is undeniable that summer is a critical period in any gym, but it cannot be used as an excuse either.

You should stop to analyse and really see the reason for this drop in the number of users in your gym, if it is due to the season or if, on the contrary, there is some other reason.

Some of the most common causes are:

  • Not having a timetible that matches the pace of life in summer.
  • Having ventailation problems or no air conditioning in the gym at all.
  • Reduce the services you offer this season: supervised classes, personal training, nutrition service…

On the other hand, and in parallel to the personal analysis of your centre, it is time to look at the numbers. The clearest way to see if your gym is working properly or not is to look at the KPIs.

What are your gym’s KPIs? The quality indicators or key indicators of your centre.

Why should you take them into account?

  • You get valuable and useful information for your gym.
  • You can measure certain variables and outcomes based on this information.
  • They allow you to design effective strategies.

What are the most important KPIs for a gym?

Volume of income per member:

Volume of income/ Number of members

User churn rate:

Users in a given period – deregistrations in the same period = Result 1

Result 1 + additions = Result 2

Growth of active users:

((Total number of active users at the end) / (Total number of active users at the beginning) -1) x 100

Average class attendance:

(Final Class Attendance / Initial Class Attendance) * 100

If you want to know more about churn and how you can avoid it, we recommend this article: Box management indicators: how to avoid churn.
Remember that the most important thing is to anticipate and know the needs of your gym users at every moment of the year. This will allow you to apply strategies that will gradually make your users understand that your gym is a key part of their lives and their physical and mental wellbeing.

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