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In the early days of opening your gym, there’s a lot of plate spinning to be done. Our CEO is an ex-gym owner, so we understand how stressful it can be. It’s as if you have to be a business owner, an accountant, a cleaner, a handyman and a wellness expert all rolled into one; you’re stuck feeling like there aren’t enough hours in the day.

So how can you stop this feeling of overwhelm and gain control of your business?

Member Management for Startup Gyms

Take a Step Back.

The first step is to step backwards and assess your business as it is. List all of the tasks you have to take care of weekly, monthly, quarterly and annually. Your list can include things from submitting your tax returns to equipment maintenance. 

Now it’s time to delegate. If you’re lucky enough to have staff in the first few months of being open, what responsibilities can you offload onto them? If you don’t have staff, can you outsource or automate any of those duties?

Next, it’s time to establish your key performance indicators. What areas of your business do you want to monitor the closest? How do you know what success looks like in each of these areas? Your KPIs can include membership sales, the total number of members you have or even monthly revenue. By keeping an eye on these bits of data, you can identify where your business is succeeding, areas you might need to spend time improving and spot growth opportunities.

Member Management Dashboard

Say goodbye to your spreadsheets.

Once you’ve looked at your business from a high level, you need to consider how productive your processes are. If you’re spending two hours every morning on gym admin and updating spreadsheets, that’s not a good use of your time. 

There are many solutions to boosting productivity, but perhaps the biggest and easiest way to address all of your admin concerns is by using CRM software. Customer Relationship Management software allows you to store customer and prospect information, identify sales opportunities, manage memberships and payments in one central location instead of using paperwork and spreadsheets.

Managing everything from one place is the first step in getting more organised. If you’re currently using a spreadsheet to keep track of which customers have paid and which ones haven’t, it’s time to consider switching to something more intuitive (and GDPR compliant). The three key pillars of your business are member management, payments and accounting, so you should be looking for a CRM system that allows you to look after those things from one place.

As an example, ClubRight allows you to manage your members, collect payments and synchronises transactions with Xero Accounting – meaning there’s hardly any admin work for you.

ClubRight, Xero, GoCardless Stripe

Concentrate on earning a stable monthly income.

Whether you’re a class-based studio or a strength and conditioning gym, the best way to establish a good cash flow is by earning yourself a stable income each month. A regular monthly income means that you avoid the element of uncertainty that comes with running your own business.

You want to make it as easy as possible for your customers to make purchases. The more barriers there are to sale, the more likely it is that people will drop off – which isn’t ideal. Collecting cash payments for classes and memberships at the front desk is okay for your first few customers when you’re starting out, but it’s not sustainable in the long term (and unhygienic in post-pandemic times!). It’s not fully predictable either, since you have to rely on your members physically coming down to your gym and remembering to bring their membership sum in cash.

That’s where the benefit of direct debit comes in.

Direct Debit is a foolproof way of generating a stable monthly income. Signing your members up to a monthly membership is a solid way of making sure you’ve got a fixed amount of money being paid into your bank account each month. Direct Debit isn’t exclusive to gyms either – studios, bootcamps and personal trainers should also take advantage of this tip too. It’s good for cash flow and makes sure there are no nasty surprises at the end of each month in the early days of starting your business. After all, nasty financial surprises can make or break your business in those first few months.

Plus, it’s much easier to complete your tax returns and keep track of payments in your accounting system when everything is digital – tasks that can be incredibly daunting as a new business owner.


In summary, investing in member management software is the number one way to gain control of your business and supercharge growth that takes you from a startup to a well-established club. Above all, having a system in place that takes care of your admin, payments and more will make your life as a gym owner far easier.


If you’re searching for a member management system that will help you significantly cut back on the time you spend on gym admin, consider ClubRight. Our software has been created by ex-gym owners, so we’re the people that truly understand the hardships of running a startup in the fitness industry.

Book a chat with one of our product experts and let’s see how we can help.

Gym Software for startups