Categories: Society

The Win-Win of Digitizing Access to Sports Facilities

sports facilities

The fitness and sports industry is growing exponentially. Consumers engage with physical activities more than ever, which exploded fitness into a global industry, edging USD 100 billion in worth.

While there are many fitness chains with thousands of members, what’s remarkable about the industry is its ability to accommodate small and medium-sized businesses. In fact, according to the International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association, boutique fitness is the fastest growing brick-and-mortar exercise category. Between 2013 and 2017, memberships at boutique studios grew by 121 percent; and there is no sign of this trend leveling off.

Catering to Today’s Tech-Savvy Gym-Goers

sports facilities

As fitness continues to boom, billions of visits to member-only sports facilities take place every year. While large fitness chains might have staff receptionists, smaller clubs might not have the same resources. However, there might be no need to do so, as the consumer culture in fitness significantly shifted.

Many gym-goers are already tech-savvy: They might already have several apps or wearable devices to count their steps, log the workout sessions, sleep, or other medical data. Hence, both customers and companies can reap the manifold benefits of digitizing the fitness experience as much as possible.

Tapping into a digital platform like SportsNow, managers of sports facilities can ease the receptionary duties, allowing members to gain access to an authorized area using their mobile phones. This can reduce the entrance queues, and allow any staff to focus more on attending other needs of the customers.

SportsNow: Access For a Leaner Business

sports facilities

An app as such also enables an unstaffed reception outside peak hours. Hence, it creates a game-changing comfort and flexibility: The sports facilities can extend their operation hours, opening earlier and closing later. In a society that’s switched on for 24 hours, this can significantly enhance the business and customer engagement, with less of a burden.

The same digital infrastructure also allows the sports facility owners to manage most of the administrative tasks such as course reservation, member management, staff planning, and finances in one system.

Also, SportsNow empowers them to diversify their incomes, as it makes it more convenient for gym users to buy food or apparel, as well as book specialized services like classes, personal training sessions, or a sports massage.

In a time when exercising is a digitally complemented process for many, SportsNow also caters to some new business needs: Using the app, gyms and sports businesses benefit from professional websites and advertisements to attract new customers, without the overwhelming process of outsourcing marketing efforts.

Furthermore, in case the gym-goers aren’t able to turn up at their studio, SportsNow also allows them to attend livestream or online classes, creating another source of revenue for the business owners.

Personalizing Sports: Challenge Accepted to Win

Especially during peak hours, gyms might be pushing their capacities and can only take in a limited number of people. Thus, reservation solves an important hassle: Once the players book a class or a spot, they can avoid the disappointment of having to wait.

Christian Schulthess, Business Development Manager at dormakaba digital, chimes in on how quickly the consumer culture and demands evolved in recent years, particularly in the sports industry.

“Self-service used to be associated with poorer service, but the advanced access solutions completely shattered this view. Nowadays, customers demand self-service for personalized and flexible service. This boosts customer satisfaction, loyalty and engagement,” he says.

Christian Schulthess believes that especially small and medium-sized enterprises are poised to benefit digitization.

App-based access solutions help businesses cut costs and stay ahead of the competition.

Christian Schulthess, Business Development Manager at dormakaba digital
Beat Aeschimann

Beat Aeschimann

Beat is the Head of Marketing and Product Management at dormakaba Switzerland. With his long experience in the security industry, he is further responsible for building alliances for digital businesses.