How to raise gym membership fees (without losing members)

Nearly every gym owner should know how much it costs to open a gym and the need to raise costs at some time. It’s the best method to boost profits, and it’s standard practice for every gym, but figure out how to do it properly if you want to reap the rewards.

If you need to raise your membership fees and want to do so in a way that benefits both you and your members, this article may help.

1. Time your gym price effectively

The first and possibly the most critical step is timing your price increase appropriately. A price increase may be appropriate if your present paying members are happy with your service and amenities.

Before raising fees, a gym should ensure that it has recently added value or has plans to do so within the next several months. Talk with your gym members about what improvements they may want to see, then continue to act on their suggestions.

2. Improve your fitness center

Once you understand what facilities, equipment, services, and goods your members desire, start implementing them. Improving your gym foundation allows you to ask for a higher price confidently. With a solid gym foundation, reach out to a mass audience through a tactical gym marketing approach to boost gym sales in the long run.

Members will love new or improved machines, but even if you can’t afford them, you can still show appreciation by replacing the floor mats, adding fans, or stocking up on new skipping ropes. Considering the variety of gyms, you should follow your intuition.

They will be more receptive to the increased pricing if you provide more value initially.

The idea here is to introduce enhancements that also enable you to boost profits. It is not economically viable to raise prices by 20% while simultaneously seeing expenses rise by the same amount. After all, you want higher profit margins to retain more of your hard-earned cash.

3. Talk it out

Maintain open lines of communication with your gym members. Start by inquiring about their thoughts on the current state of development, what you’ve been up to, and whether or not the updates have been well received.

Ensure they know the benefits they will get from joining your gym, the value they will receive, and the evolution of your business. Then, give them plenty of heads up before implementing a price hike so they aren’t caught off guard.

This is a simple yet essential procedure. You will lose business and members if you decide to raise prices without informing your customers. 

4. Give your long-term clients discounted pricing for an additional year

Long-term clients (or existing members) should be given continued access to the introductory price.

Let’s assume that beginning on November 21, the weekly fee for new gym members is $30. Until January 1, 2023, all existing members may continue paying just $25 per week.

Most of your existing members should stick around if you pair this with modernizing the gym and keeping in close contact with them.

5. If gym members do depart, find out why

Some members will inevitably depart. However, don’t let them go without hearing their thoughts; solicit input. Feedback is invaluable, whether it’s constructive criticism or a reiteration of your worst fears.

6. Package your offerings

Increasing prices means charging more for the same product or service. Bundling your service (also known as “upselling”) is a fantastic method to boost revenue and profit margins. For instance, if customers sign up for a certain number of personal training sessions at once, you might give them a discount.

Alternatively, you may give members access to special pricing at the cafe or supplement shop. In this approach, members may continue to feel that they are receiving value from the club even though the cost of membership as a whole has risen.

7. Prepare in advance

Ultimately, it’s all about maintaining your connection and communicating with your members when strategizing a price rise. Ensure you’ve included the expenses you’re incurring and any increases you anticipate needing to be absorbed before implementing a price hike.

You would not want to raise prices to do it again in four months. Carefully plan when you’ll implement price hikes, and watch your spending habits to avoid financial missteps.