Data is everywhere. It floats around your health club, and it’s just waiting to be used. Every action your members take is a data point that can be analyzed. But data only delivers value when it’s being used, analyzed, and made actionable. Only then will it help you adapt your services to members’ needs and optimize business performance.
Big Data, Big Deal
Research shows that companies who gain insights into customer behavior through data analysis outperform their peers by 85% in sales growth. Business Analytics solutions can help visualize important data in graphs, tables and dashboards, which is crucial to identify opportunities for growth and understanding member behavior within your business.
Using Business Analytics, loan companies found out that iPhone users repay their loans more often than Android users, and as such a user should be able to loan a higher amount, when visiting their site with an iPhone. The latter is a true example how data influences business decisions. But let’s discuss how you could make data work for your facility.
The State of Data in the Fitness Industry
Too often businesses in the fitness industry are still reliant on data handling methods that quite limited, and often even non-existent beyond the basic revenue and member growth metrics. It is still the norm to work with spreadsheets or limited dashboards and thus keep data siloed, which makes management, analysis, and cross-referencing more time consuming than it needs to be.
Many other industries, such as finance and e-commerce, are already highly data-driven and are evidence of the proven success that is yielded when adopting data-led management practices. And a recent study by MIT’s Center for Digital Business showed a blanket 4% increase in productivity and 6% profit increase for businesses who implemented data into management decisions. In today’s competitive fitness market, this can make the difference between profit and loss.
Modern Data-Driven Management
Modern business analytics makes it far easier to implement data into key management decisions, through dashboarding a wide array of connected metrics. The right tool can give you quick access to data from the enterprise level right down to individual client-level statistics. Identifying and tracking key metrics like the customer lifetime value, retention rates, visit distribution over time, memberships per demographic group, and revenue source distributions will help you improve your business over time as these give insight in the DNA of your business.
The power of modern business analytics lies in combining this information with contextual data to optimize all business decisions, such as your target groups, membership offering, service distribution, product offerings, marketing spending and more.
The Future of Business Analytics
The years ahead will continue the switch towards practices aligned to ‘big data’ and the opportunities it brings.
If I extrapolate what is happening in other industries, we’ll see a greater emphasis on things such as machine learning, pattern recognition, and predictive modeling to better identify trends and relationships in datasets and even predict the future. For example, if you have access to all class booking info over the last years, you can effectively predict the success of possible classes, timeslots, and so on. And aggregated data of nutrition diaries and workout logs can be combined with contextual data such as age, weight, gender, and so on, to provide the foundation for a workout recommendation system to ensure each member will achieve their personal goals. And successful members are happy members, who stay longer and bring their friends along.
These techniques are already employed in industries such as banking and retail, where large numerical databases are manipulated to predict and manipulate consumer behaviour. As artificial intelligence becomes an accepted part of our analytical lives, the world of fitness will experience many benefits. Practices like risk modeling will allow us to use data and plan for the future, making investments safer and the health of your business much easier to maintain.
Business intelligence, if it isn’t already, should become your priority in the years to come. Investing in the right gym management solutions to handle your BI now can reduce the need for micro-managing your data analytics in the future, as well as free up valuable time and resources to implement your findings.
A strategic approach to business intelligence will transform your operational processes, and allows you to unlock the true potential of your business, improve your competitive edge and maximize your profits for the years to come.