Christina Von Stroh, the director of product at Zen Planner, argues that while having a website was a norm for the health and fitness industry 15 years ago, there’s now a new standard for being “with it” in terms of technology. Today, having a kiosk at the front of your club is the new standard.
A kiosk can allow your members or prospects to do a number of things, without ever having to bother the front desk. For example, they can sign up for a membership or additional training sessions, or check their account balances.
This makes things easier on the club owner, and front desk staff.
“What we’ve heard overwhelmingly so is that [kiosks] make things easier,” said Von Stroh. “Instead of having someone physically behind the desk… that person, that fitness or business owner, that coach or that instructor, can be with their client as somebody is checking themselves in or as someone is signing up.”
Aside from allowing owners or instructors more face time with their members, Michelle Burrows, the vice president of marketing at Zen Planner, stated that kiosks have saved business owners an average of 10 hours per week in time they used to do on administrative work.
“It also allows them to focus more on interacting with their clients or members, rather than sort of being buried in paper work,” said Burrows. “And then, for example, for something like the iPad kiosk specifically, it gets them off of having to be at the front desk and allows them to interact directly.”
Conversely, Carole Oat, a national sales manager at Twin Oaks Software, argues this saves member’s time as well, limiting the minutes they would spend waiting on someone behind the front desk.
“I think it’s more the convenience. People are just expecting that these days,” said Oat.
This past summer, Zen Planner launched a kiosk app that makes checking in members even more simple. Von Stroh said adding a kiosk to a club is as simple as downloading an app, a little bit of configuration, then putting an iPad at your front desk – no training required for the member.
While Oat recognized kiosks could reduce staffing at the club, they have “increasing sales potential.” She said it is the club’s responsibility to continue to move forward and provide the technology that everyone is expecting.