Anyone using monthly pricing plans for personal training?
I’m thinking very seriously about switching to this option immediately.
I currently sell number of session packages where buying more session reduces cost. I took this approach when I started my company in order to get more long term commitment. The problem is when someone buys a package that should only last let’s say 2 months, between a couple vacations, work trips, couple days of being sick...that 2 month package turns into a 3 month package. This is making it very difficult to figure out how to forecast my own finances.
What I am considering is a flat monthly rate based on number of sessions per week. Similar to what gyms do, they would basically pay to retain me as their trainer for the month and it would be up to them to make sure that they get their training sessions scheduled with me. This would also mean if they take vacations, work trips, sick days, etc...and not be able to fulfill their set number of sessions per week that they would eat the cost basically.
This option will keep a steady supply of income coming in throughout the month, and it also will probably even allow me to lower my rates slightly.
What I am really wondering is from any of you that use this pricing method, how do clients react when they realize they didn’t get their desired number of sessions per week because of something they did? Do they expect refunds, or do most of them understand how it works?
When I accept a new client on my book...
They understand its month-to-month. I do not want to have a client in the studio (paying or not) who is not a good fit. ALL my clients pay monthly on the 1st, so I know exactly what I am making each month. I do a very good job of setting the training goal/timeline expectations and how long they will be "investing" in themselves.
So each client is worth 800-1200/month for me based on their sessions.
I do not give discounts...
I do not sell packages BECAUSE anything can happen to them or me and I choose not to take on that long-term financial responsibility of keeping track of unused sessions, refunds etc.
They do sign a policy sheet which explains the cancellation/no-show policy, returned checks, inclement weather and sickness.
I choose anywhere from 9-15 clients a month to be on my book at any given time. I don't want to be offering discounts, everyone can't train with me, I need to connect with each of them and it can be very mentally draining (in a good way).
So, that said, I keep the rates hi-end, take only a few clients, work less, and make more :)
I have other streams of fitness income (my book, online figure training e-book, videos, affiliate products (trx, gymboss, etc) that are making me money while I sleep - the long-term goal of any fitness professional!
I have had this issue before and I approached it that some clients might get sick, injured, attend a wedding or take that long needed deserved vacation.
We as professional trainers can take off time too for the same reasons..thus leaving those un-used sessions to spill over into another week or two, which puts us in the same situation as your question.
If I hired a trainer and lost sessions because of the reasons I mentioned, I would not return to that trainer and if a trainer took time off and I lost sessions...well that would be even worse. Unforseen circumstances may arise at times, and we must take that into consideration and make financial preparations.
I know that you posted this a while ago. I am a gym owner who just started to implement this system and have found it change my whole business - in a very good way.
My gym manager actually posted a YouTube video about it:
Just for example, my independent PT's have two types of sessions: 1/2 hour and full hour.
We have three packaging options either half or full hour for discounted prices: 5, 10, 20 sessions
For Full Session Package Amounts, the prices are as follows:
5 ($50 per session) total = $250.00
10 ($47 per session) total = $470.00
20 ($45 per session) total = $900.00
For Half Session Package Amounts, the prices are as follows:
5 ($33 per session) total = $165.00
10 ($30 per session) total = $300.00
20 ($27 per session) total = $540.00
I have given my gym members an option of financing these packages based on a weekly commitment (I have developed a payment processing software that gives the client the ability to be billed weekly for such a package like this - I also offer this software to the public which includes great financial analysis such as retention, attrition, commissions, sales, etc,,, and I digress). So lets say the member wants to commit to PT 1x per week for a month. That is the total package of 5 for $165 for 1/2 hour or $250 per full hour. Well, forking over that amount of cash is hard all at once for a lot of people. They still make the commitment, but based on my program and option at my facility, they now can make a weekly payment towards that package option and still get the package price. They do, however, have to use that PT session each week or they do lose it (no roll overs). Now, to get started and to get the discounted package, they do have to sign a contract reflecting their month commitment, but only have to pay for that 1 week's PT session at either $33 or $50. The member will then be billed each week for the PT sessions that they committed themselves to.
Please check out my billing company that can easily accommodate this system for you at:
- you keep your late fees
- our company does not hold your accounts hostage let alone have access to them!
- we offer weekly billing and other incentives for using us (gym management system, member check-in software, and sales contract engine!)
I hope this helps.