Have you ever booked a reservation online for your favorite restaurant? Or perhaps you have bought tickets online that reserved you a spot at a concert? While you may not have noticed, these are all forms of booking systems that you have unknowingly used as part of your daily lives.
With the rapid advancement of technology, many fitness studios have started to adopt some form of a booking system. This has resulted in an easier load of administrative tasks on businesses. Administrative staff are no longer needed to handle bookings and payments manually. Now that you are reading this blog, it is safe to assume that you are curious about or are in the process of choosing a booking system for your very own fitness studio. Worry not, because in this blog, we will be going through the several aspects that you have to consider when choosing the right booking system for you.
*Color coding: Red = Can be improved, Yellow = Alright, Green = Good*
*Please note that this is strictly our opinion it may vary depending on the user*
*Prices were converted from USD to SGD based on the exchange rate as of 14th June 2023*
Firstly, price is probably your biggest concern when your fitness studio just started out as cash flow may become an issue. Therefore, it is paramount that you select a booking system that is affordable to your studio without compromising on features. Online booking systems for fitness studios usually come in different tiers and plans, with higher tier plans unlocking more features. However, it is important to note that prices vary largely depending on the booking system that you come across.
Take Mindbody for example, one of the many online booking softwares that cater to fitness studios. Mindbody offers a comprehensive list of features for their app and website but their prices are quite high. Their cheapest plan starts at close to S$200 according to Capterra. Alternatively, booking solutions such as vibefam offer similar features with its cheapest plan starting at only S$59. Hence, you consider the prices of the different booking systems available when selecting the right system for your studio.
Secondly, an important aspect of using a booking system is its features. After all, the whole point of using a booking system is to help you in reducing your administrative workload. Many fitness studios make the mistake of going for the most features available on a system. However, most studios do not require or make use of most of the features provided. Therefore, it is important to consider what features on the system that your particular studio may require.
Even though most systems cover most of the major features, we must consider the unique features that each system offers. For example, some booking systems only allow for credit cards as a medium of payment. Conversely, other systems may offer more local payment methods like GrabPay and Paynow which may be preferred for your community.
Other than the features mentioned above, systems like MindBody and vibefam have unique features that promote discovery of your studio on their platform. They allow members to try out multiple classes without needing to commit to a package or membership. Consequently, this could be an important feature for your fitness studio if you are looking to expand your community by promoting trials.
Another important thing to consider is the type of system that you select. Booking systems such as MindBody and Glofox are specifically tailored to fit the needs of a fitness studio. It is undeniable that other more generic systems may provide the necessary features at the early stages of your fitness studio. However, your fitness studio may require more specific features as it expands. Hence, this can only be provided by systems that cater to fitness studios as generic systems are unable to provide the precise feature that you may require.
Lastly, whenever you face a problem on a system, you would want to quickly get in touch with customer service. Well, this applies to booking systems as well. When you or your members are having trouble on the system, you would want an excellent customer support system to be in place. This would basically mean a swift response and decisive action to quickly resolve the problem that you are facing.
For instance, bigger corporations such as MindBody and Glofox may require a longer response time as they serve a large customer base. Thus, customer service is another important consideration when choosing the right booking system for your fitness studio.
In summary, your decision is ultimately up to your own personal preference and the needs of your studio. It really depends on how compatible it is with your current and future operations as a fitness studio. You may gather information on review websites like Capterra to find out more about what each platform offers.
Finally, I hope that you found this article informative and may it aid you in your journey to choosing the right booking system for your fitness studio. If you are interested in similar articles to this, check out our previous article on cheaper alternatives to Mindbody here. If you want to find out more about vibefam, we provide a free demo where you can find out how the system can power your business and take it to the next level.
This article is written by Jayden Ling.