4 Tips to Increase Non-Dues Revenue at Your Health Club

The Atlantic Club COO Kevin McHugh offers four strategies to increase your club's non-dues revenue and, ultimately, your bottom line.

Membership is only one way for a health club to generate revenue. A sometimes overlooked profit-driver is non-dues revenues, which can benefit health clubs in several ways.

“Once you are able to diversify your income streams, your business has the opportunity to offset potential shortfalls in other areas that may occur in your business,” says Kevin McHugh, COO of The Atlantic Club. “In addition, having a culture of creating non-dues revenues that positively impact the membership provides them more opportunities to be engaged in your business. During economic downturns, membership is often much more vulnerable that ancillary income streams that are engaging the customer more and make it harder to depart.”

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How to Determine Growth Areas for Non-Dues Revenue

“Health clubs can determine the best growth areas for their club by doing research,” he says. “This analysis includes networking with other clubs in the IHRSA network, as well as surveying the members as to what they would like to see.”

When looking for opportunities for growth, McHugh says club owners should also focus on:

  1. Creating a culture where the staff becomes focused on creating new revenue streams
  2. Drilling down into the club’s ancillary income streams in order to create new ancillary income streams within the current income streams
  3. Exploring where there are gaps in the club's business
  4. Studying other best practices and adapting them to the individual club’s business

4 Tips to Increase Health Club Non-Dues Revenue

Here are McHugh’s four tips for health clubs to increase non-dues revenue.

  1. Do not be concerned with non-dues revenues—be concerned with non-dues profits.

Not all non-dues revenue programs work—you need to be diligent in identifying where programs need to be put to rest.

  1. We have the patience rule; [the program] often does not become an overnight success. Some do, but most can take up to a year. And if you are committed and place the proper resources, your chance for success has improved.
  2. Remember that membership dues is the club’s number one priority. Ancillary income can be more fun and take time away from the core business. Being aware of this potential issue will provide all involved a better chance of overall success for the business.
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Marianne Aiello

Marianne Aiello previously served as IHRSA's Senior Digital Content Manager—a position focused on crafting and monitoring IHRSA’s digital strategy and covering IHRSA events.