How To Understand The ROI Of Gym Equipment

Few things impact the gym member experience more than the equipment inside the facility.

Sure, we’ve seen pricing – both high and low end – attract or repel members. Location absolutely plays an important part as well. But once the dust settles, the member pays their fees, and they are set free inside your facility. There, it is the sea of machinery that will make or break their experience with your brand.

It’s one thing to know that the gym equipment is being used, it’s another thing to understand if your equipment is earning its keep.

You measure new sales and when it explodes, you know your marketing has worked. The industry laments attrition, and when it increases, everything is under scrutiny and second-guessed.

The point is these things are measured, along with every other metric that is available to you – except one little thing: How effective is all your gym equipment?

How is it possible that the things that earn the loyalty and member longevity, the things that fill up the floor, the things that generate the revenue – the equipment – are not measured?

How can a business operate without understanding the return of such a huge capital expense? How can any decisions be made or strategies determined without seeing ALL the data available?

It can’t!

To understand your business fully is to understand the impact that all your gym equipment has on your members.

Here are five things to measure in order to understand just how much each piece of your equipment is earning for your club:

  1. Usage. Not all equipment is used the same. Not all locations are created equal. Figuring out how much each piece of strength and cardio equipment is being used is the first place to start.
  2. Downtime. Not all gym equipment is made the same. Understanding the impact of broken machines – the cost and length of time it takes to have them fixed—is a top factor in member satisfaction.
  3. Brand affinity. Certain pieces of equipment attract a loyal following. Understanding which manufacturer is more popular in your club and then acting on that data will increase member satisfaction.
  4. Preventative maintenance. We aren’t talking about rotating machines (because you already do that right?). Preventative maintenance is understanding how usage impacts your equipment so you can make decisions ahead of time to avoid downtime altogether. How many hours of selected equipment usage before you need to replace the cable? Data answers that before it snaps.
  5. Longevity. Knowing what equipment is most resilient will help make purchase decisions easier. Understanding the ratio of uptime and downtime versus brand and price range means you can make decisions with clarity depending on your needs – even as they change.

Simply having gym equipment in a room is no longer a valid strategy. Understanding how each piece performs for your bottom line is as crucial and impactful as your attrition rate.

It’s time to answer the question of whether your equipment is working for – or against you.

Article written by Rob Woodbridge, CEO of Gymtrack, for the What’s New in Fitness Magazine – Spring 2017 Edition.

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