4 Ways Gyms are Using SMS Payment Solutions to Address Payment & Outstanding Balance Concerns
Let members go for a run on your treadmills — but don’t have them run away from billing and paying outstanding balances. SMS text message reminders are the best way to ensure that payments are made on time.
It’s efficient, cost-effective, and offers proven results.
Gyms and fitness studios make their money from membership dues, classes taken, services rendered (i.e. training sessions, nutritionist sessions, in-house spa appointments), gift shops, on-site cafes, and various other special add-ons.
Maintain your incoming cash flow by ensuring prompt payments for all areas of your business with the channel that we all live on 24/7: our mobile phones. With a staggering 98% open rate, text messages are the most efficient way to ensure that your message gets delivered and promptly read.
You can also use text payment solutions to facilitate the immediate, automated delivery of funds. But how does an SMS payment work and how do you set up SMS payment? Read on...
Add the Option of SMS Payments to Your Gym Payment Systems
First, you might be wondering, just what is an SMS Payment? Well, an SMS text is a 160 character (or less) message sent to your mobile phone.
So naturally then, an SMS payment is a texted payment process that allows customers to pay via an SMS text alert. You can either text a link to a protected web portal or have a customer respond directly with payment information. Afterwards, text back a verification receipt so that everyone has a record of the transaction. This can be done for membership dues, services (like fitness training sessions), or products (like athleisure sold in the fitness shop).
It’s fast, easy, reliable, and most importantly, secure. Thanks to two-factor authentication (2FA), EZ Texting offers added security, dramatically reducing the risk of fraudulent activity.
In our digitalized world, many clients are eager to streamline payment systems. This can be particularly true in fitness clubs, where credit card information will generally be stored on file for monthly membership dues.
Alert Members to Payment Issues They Can Quickly Address via SMS Prompts
Many gyms have automatic withdrawals for monthly dues, whereupon credit cards (or bank accounts) are charged the fees at a set date.
Generally, this works well enough. But from time to time, a credit card may be denied. Perhaps, a card was lost or stolen and had to be cancelled, a new number was issued, or the client charged beyond their limit and a freeze was put on to the account. The same goes for bank accounts, which are also often changed for a variety of issues.
No matter the reason, any charge the gym would make would be denied.
Quickly alert clients to the situation so they can rectify it. Likely, it just slipped their mind. After all, if they have been a member for years, thus such monthly charges are easily forgotten about when they are on automatic withdrawal.
Thanks to a text’s urgent push notification system, clients are likely to read the text within minutes of receipt and can then just as swiftly remit payment. To streamline the process, include a link to a secure web portal for clients to add their new credit card information.
Ensure Continued Prompt Payment via Text
Of course, not all fitness clubs and studios run on automatic withdrawals. Some studios have pay-by-class arrangements as well and clients are sent an itemized bill after the fact. For these businesses, it is even more critical that they send notices and outstanding payment reminders on a channel that will get seen.
Emails are often ignored, unopened, and entirely forgotten — even if they didn’t find their way into a member’s spam folder. The same could be said of a tedious collections call or expensive direct mailing.
Add extra impact and urgency with emojis, punctuation, and capitalization.
Cost-Effectively Alert Members to Dues Increases via SMS
There are certain facts of life that everyone at a gym knows well. When you’re running late getting ready for work, there’ll be no showers available. Treadmills may be vacant for hours mid-day but packed at the after-work rush hour. The yoga straps will mysteriously disappear from the studio. And dues will, at some point, increase. Ditto for class fees at studios.
Traditionally, fitness clubs would send such announcements via direct mailings and postcards. But postage (and extra overhead) add up — and quickly. Message everyone with just a few clicks via SMS text. Try to give members some time between the announcement and the rate hike. (It’s equally a fact of life that some members will wish to cancel their memberships… or at least be given the opportunity to do so).
An extra benefit of messaging members via text over direct mail? You have absolute control of the delivery and proof that the text was both received as well as data if it was opened.