If you run a fitness gym business, getting booked for an appointment is great until your customer ends up a no-show. When too prevalent, cumulatively, these no-shows can be detrimental for your business more than you know it. Your fitness gym may eventually take the hit and possibly lose productivity and income. Moreover, it doesn’t only derail your business schedules. Over time, it can cost days’ worth of revenue as missed appointments could’ve been set for another.
In most fitness gym businesses, the common reasons why clients become no-shows are loss of interest, change of plans, or bad first experience. If these are the usual cases in your business, you must be able to find a solution to effectively address them. Knowing the reason why your customers become no-shows is just as important as knowing how to retain them.
Not every no-show can be wiped out completely, but luckily, with the combination of these seven simple steps and using a powerful WordPress booking plugin, you may reduce the number of no-shows in your fitness gym.
Let’s talk about these simple tips on how to reduce no-shows in your fitness gym:
- Set Up Reminders
Appointments can be easy to miss. But the good news is there’s a simple solution for it—send quick, periodic reminders to your customers about their scheduled date to help them remember their appointments. For example, they can be reminded a week before, then on the day of their appointment.
When a customer books an appointment with you, make sure to ask them about their preferred reminder method. You can use phone calls or text messages since people are always using their phones so it’s harder to miss, or even e-mails a couple of days beforehand. A lot of people count on reminders, especially when it comes to their appointments. Setting up reminders for your customers not only shows that you value them, but may also help improve customer loyalty.
- Offer Convenience
Most people who use fitness gyms lead an active lifestyle and can get very busy. One way to reduce no-shows is by scheduling appointments and cancellations online. Allowing your customers to cancel or reschedule their set appointments online will make it faster and easier for them, and will reduce hassle on your part.
With online booking, it would be easier to set up notifications that you’ll see right away whenever your customers book an appointment. It would also help to organize schedules in a way that makes all appointments accessible in one place.
It would also help to add a required field for their reason of cancellation on the form they have to fill out before canceling an appointment. This can help you identify their reasons for missing their appointments. Knowing why your customers missed or canceled their appointments is important. This way, you’ll know the exact areas that could use some improvement.
- Confirm Appointments
After setting a date for an appointment, have your customers confirm it by responding to prompts or reminders. Confirming an appointment may help prompt the customer’s commitment when they book a time slot. The best way to do this is by sending confirmation messages to validate their booking through their mobile device. If they do not respond, you can cancel their appointment, but make sure that they’re aware that their appointment will be canceled if they fail to confirm it. Canceled appointments are better than missed ones because they give you a chance to replace them with a schedule for another customer.
- Implement Pre-Payments And A Reward System
Requiring prepaid appointments from your customers when they set a schedule can help you in two ways. First, your customer is less likely to make cancellations, especially if it’s non-refundable. Second, it helps make sure that your customers are serious about their appointments.
You can also offer incentives such as discounts or rebates on their next appointments when they complete their first appointment. This can encourage your customers to not only show up on their schedule but also to book another appointment again. More importantly, it can encourage customer loyalty, especially if you offer high-quality services.
- Establish A Strict No-Show Policy
No-show policies can be a great way to reinforce your customers’ responsibility and commitment. Consider this as an investment for the future as each time slot represents an opportunity for profit, which is a major factor in a business’s growth. Establishing this policy can discourage your customers from missing their set appointments and reduce no-shows.
You may also opt for a refund policy. Explain to your customers that a penalty will only be charged when they do a no-show without proper cancellations or reschedules within a specified time limit. The ideal standard procedure is to have them reschedule within 24 hours before their appointment to avoid being charged with penalties. Before they book an appointment, be clear to your customers about the no-show fee so they won’t be caught off-guard and end up complaining when they finally see it.
- Send Follow-Ups
Isn’t it the worst when customers don’t show up on their scheduled appointments? But if the day isn’t over yet, you can always follow up with your customers. Send follow-up text messages or emails to let them know they’ve missed their appointments, ideally within the first hour, and ask them if they want to reschedule. Follow-ups can help reduce missed appointments because it reminds your customers about their appointments and gives them a chance to show up.
- Show That You Care
It’s important to build and strengthen your customer relationship. Customers will give more attention to businesses that they have a connection with. Building a strong customer relationship is one way to effectively reduce no-shows from happening because this can help maintain the customer’s commitments.
When your customers feel valued and important, they are less likely to discard their appointments with you. By showing your customers that they are cared for in your business, they will likely reciprocate that gesture and value your business as well.
Reducing the number of no-shows is not something that can happen overnight. However, knowing how to understand missed appointments and how to respond to them is important in its resolution. Lastly, remember to be considerate with your customers and always make them feel that they are valued in your business.