It’s 2019. We don’t have flying cars yet, but we’ve got some pretty impressive tech out there. Concurrently, we also have fitness businesses that don’t have a website, let alone one that looks good and helps drive new business to their gym. This in spite of the fact that the majority of people find their gym or fitness facility online.
Maybe you’re a new business and just haven’t gotten around to building a site yet (you should do that ASAP). Perhaps you’ve been in business for generations and have done just fine growing through word of mouth (you could grow faster with a website). Or, maybe worst of all, you could have a website that you had a student build for you a decade or longer ago that is a hideous monstrosity of flash animations, bright color and outdated information (you need help)!
Whatever your situation, if you’re in the business of fitness, you need a website for your prospective members to find you and for your current members to stay engaged. Not only do you need a website, you need a website that looks stunning, is optimized for search engines and is mobile responsive (so that it looks good on phones and tablets).
For this reason, we’ve built out a free checklist covering the 10 Things Your Fitness Business Website Must Have for 2019. Whether you have a technical background and can build your own site, or if you’re outsourcing your site design (to Zen Planner, hopefully), these 10 things are absolute must haves if you want to have a website that helps your business grow.
We’ll cover 4 of these items a little more in-depth here because they are so important, however if you just want to download the checklist right away, click here.
1). Lead Forms
Embedded lead forms are essential if you’re looking to grow your business. For those who are completely nascent to technology, lead forms let visitors to your website fill out a form with fields like Name, Email, Phone etc. These forms can be a simple contact us form, where you are just sent the contact info to follow up on, or they can include special offers like an e-book or a free trial membership in exchange for getting the individuals contact details.
Some general rules of thumb when it comes to lead forms:
- The shorter the better. People are much more likely to complete a form with only a few fields as opposed to one that has 5 or more.
- Use action words for the call to action instead of things like “submit”.
- Follow up on your lead form submissions! These are people that want to be part of your community, the least you can do is give them a call or shoot them an email.
2). Descriptive Program Offerings
Having a page that lists your program offerings and gives some detail around them is a great way to attract prospective members. Different words and phrases mean different things to different people, so being specific can help prospects and members understand exactly what a class will entail.
If you run HIIT classes, be upfront about how difficult they are, how long they’ll be, what kind of experience is required. The number one way to disappoint your prospects and members it to overpromise and under deliver.
3). Responsive design
For those new to the websites discussion, responsive design simply means that a website looks good and performs well on mobile and tablet devices in addition to desktops. Having a website that is responsive, particularly for fitness businesses, is absolutely essential.
Here is why:
- Google has recently updated its algorithm (which determines where a website will appear in search results) to “mobile first indexing”. What this means is that Google basis its rankings on how well your site performs from a mobile perspective.
- 88% of searches for local businesses (within five miles of the searcher) occur on a smartphone.
- In general, over 50% of a fitness businesses website traffic will come from mobile sources.
Simply put, if you don’t have a good looking and functional mobile website, you’re missing out on a ton of leads and prospects.
I could (and will) preach to you about the value and benefits of Zen Planner relative to other gym management tools, but if you have a good friend or a third-party tell you how great Zen Planner is, you are going to put a lot more stock into their recommendation than from someone working for that company. That’s just a fact, and frankly it’s how it should be.
The same goes for your gym or fitness business. You can talk all day about how your programming is going to get people into the best shape of their life, but if they hear negative things from a friend or work associate, chances are they’re going to take their word for it over your own.
Which is why it is crucial that you have authentic, third-party testimonials on your site. Include pictures of the people, the context of their quote and videos if possible. Anything that can lend credibility to that person’s testimony.
These are just a few of the most important things your website needs to have in order to drive leads to your gym and grow your business, but if you can master these elements on your site, you’re heading in the right direction. To get the rest of the checklist click the image below!