You want to keep investing in your gym, but to do that, you need a healthy cash flow. You need money in your till as quickly as possible – not just the promise of future membership payments. 

Managing cash flow is always a challenge for any business, but gyms have had it especially tough over the last couple of years. Fortunately, there are several ways you can boost your short-term cash flow:

1. Sell Short-Term Passes

Short-term passes are a great way to entice prospects who might not be ready to commit to a full membership yet, or who might only be in the area for a short time – returning from university, away for work, or visiting family. 

Tie in 7-day, 14-day or 1 month memberships with calendar events like Easter, public holidays or the summer holidays for extra impact. 

With limited time access and payment up front, it’s win-win for everyone. All you need to do is use your gym management software to easily create and manage temporary access options. 

2. Advertise Annual Memberships 

Encourage members to pay up front for annual membership by offering a discount and promoting the offer in all your marketing communications – sending out emails and texts with your gym management software. 

Many members prefer the peace of mind that their membership is taken care of for the whole year, and just a few annual membership fees will have a big impact on your cash flow. 

Just make sure you have a robust renewal plan in place when those 12 months are up – one that triggers automatically – so those annual members don’t lapse. 

3. Promote Day Passes

Day passes are another way to give potential new members a taste of your facilities if they’re not ready to commit to a full membership yet. 

They’re a way for existing members to bring friends and family, and they put cash straight into your till without you making any changes in your club. 

Just make sure you remarket to those day guests to encourage them to join as a full paying member!

4. Run Themed Sporting Events

Plan out the big sporting events of the next year – like the Commonwealth Games, Tour de France and the rugby and AFL finals and run themed membership promotions alongside them. 

Anything that’s a little different is likely to grab the attention of prospects and encourage members to part with some cash, so why not: 

  • Promote special offers on food, drink and other in-stock items
  • Host special fitness events or challenges – like a 10k cycle sprint to tie in with the Tour De France –  with members paying a small entry fee to set their best effort
  • Invite guest instructors for special chargeable classes, like a rugby conditioning session or a rhythmic gymnastics lesson

5. Don’t Sacrifice Part Month Payments 

When a new member joins your gym, do you take payment immediately, or do you wait until the first of the month to run their Direct Debit? 

Don’t wait. You’re sacrificing a big chunk of cash while your new members have essentially free access to all your facilities. 

Instead, use your gym management software to take a pro rata payment that covers the time period before a new Direct Debit can be set up and taken. 

6. Chase Outstanding Debts Quickly And Automatically

When a member misses a payment or pays late, that directly impacts your cash flow. Don’t let your members have any time to think about paying, using automated software to collect their debt as soon as it’s owed. 

Gym management software like Xplor Gym can help, chasing debts automatically so your staff don’t need to worry about extra admin. 

7. Block Access Immediately For Non-Payers

Xplor Gym also shares real-time member payments data, so you can prevent access to anyone who has outstanding debt. Another way to help boost your short-term cash flow. 

If members know they can still use your facilities even if they’re late on a payment, they have no incentive to pay up quickly. But good access control can help you reclaim what you’re owed right away, getting that money into your account immediately. 

8. Re-Engage Frozen Members

If you’re looking for another quick way to boost your cash flow, your frozen members are sitting on a lot of potential revenue. 

Use your gym management software to get in touch with anyone whose membership is on hold and encourage them to re-start with a special offer. Even if you skip the pro-rata payments, you’ve got additional guaranteed income from the 1st of the month. 

9. Explore Energy Saving Options 

We’re all encouraged to make changes at home to reduce our energy usage and save money, but some of the common energy-efficiency switches are missed in the workplace. 

Take the time to see what you can change in your gym, and those small savings could add up to a substantial boost in your cash flow. You could: 

  • Switch out traditional bulbs for LED options 
  • Check if machines have eco modes – or will turn off automatically when not in use
  • Install sensors so lights can be turned on/off automatically when rooms are empty 
  • Make sure doors close automatically to improve heating and air con efficiencies 

10. Ask For Support If You Need It 

Finally, if you’re really struggling with your cash flow and need a short-term boost, don’t be afraid to ask for help and support from those you work with. 

Speak with your landlord about discounts on rent for a short period, and reach out to your local council about grants or funds. You could even ask suppliers for payment holidays or changes to a repayment schedule to give you that immediate relief you need until your cash flow is built back up. 

There are lots of different ways to increase your cash flow; some are quick and simple, others might need you and your team to be a little more creative. But together, you’ll find a range of options that together will have a significant impact on your cash flow. 

Perhaps most importantly, a healthy cash flow relies on having the right processes and the right software in place. 

That’s where Xplor Gym can help. Request a demo to learn more.

Article by Xplor Gym

First published: 28 February 2022

Last updated: 19 February 2024