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How to Improve Your Client Retention in 2024

If last year was all about growth, then surely this year should focus on keeping that influx of clients? 👀

Whether that’s your strategy or not this year, I hope that this blog on how to improve your client retention will fit into your business strategies in some way or another.

So let’s get to it… 🫡

What is Client Retention?

Client retention is a measure of how many of your clients continue to stay within your coaching program or with your gym membership.

Ok… but how do you go about calculating your client retention?

I got you 🫡

There are a few ways we can do this but let’s look at the most straightforward method.

Client Retention Rate Formula:

Total clients at the end of a period MINUS new clients acquired in same time DIVIDED by the number of clients at the start of the period MULTIPLIED by 100… 😮‍💨

1. Choose a set period of time:

I’d recommend looking at your quarters and your annual numbers, just so that you’ve got a few reference points to compare and analyse. This is because there can be seasonal fluctuations we want to be aware of to get a really detailed view.

2. Calculate the number of clients at the start of that period:

Let’s say you’re going with your first quarter of last year, add up all the new clients you had at the start of that quarter. So how many clients or gym members did you have going into the start of Q1?

3. Calculate the number of clients you had at the end of that period:

This will help you to work out how many new clients you gained in Q1, so add up all the clients or gym members you had at the end of Q1 – this will give your net new clients gained.

Who knew this would be so mathsy hey?!

4. Minus the number of net new clients gained:

This is just you don’t mix things up with newly acquired clients or gym members.

We’re nearly there…

5. The final sum…

Divide the total number of clients at the end of Q1 by the number of clients you had at the start of Q1, then multiply that number 100 to give a percentage retention rate.

Still with me? Here’s a live example to help a little…

Let’s say you had 50 online clients or gym members at the start of Q1 and let’s say you picked up 20 new clients/members but you also lost 10 clients/gym members through Q1.

Total clients at the start of Q1: 50
Total clients at the end of Q1: 60 ((50 + 20) – 10)
Net new clients: 10 (20 – 10)

So the calculation looks like this:

					(50 - 10 / 50) x 100 = 80%

Your retention rate would be 80% – which isn’t too bad at all.

So What Does Your Client Retention Rate Tell You?

If your retention rate is low, say less than 50%, then most of your clients will be NEW clients. This isn’t a bad thing in terms of business growth, you’re clearly doing something right to bring in new members or clients, but you’re highlighting some key areas that you need to work on to help KEEP those new clients and members.

The cost of acquiring new business can be up to 7 times greater than the cost of retaining them in the first place. So it really does pay off, in the long run, to KEEP members under your program or in your gym instead of constantly churning and bringing in new people.

Client retention allows you to rely more comfortably on consistent revenue, giving you the mental capacity to focus on other areas of your business, like growth, new products or services and the other 1,001 projects running a business will throw at you.

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Ok, so how do we go about improving your client retention?

It’s ok, I’ve still got you…

Here are 3 simple ways to improve your client retention in 2024:

  1. Implement a Client Feedback Loop
  2. Create a Client Education Program
  3. Adopt Client Service Tools

Now, whilst there are other ways you can strategise your client retention, these three are a good place to start and have a low to medium level of impact on your time and energy to develop and introduce.

Let’s delve into them in more detail…

1. Implement a Client Feedback Loop

We haven’t got a Scooby-doo (clue…) how things are going if we’re not communicating regularly with our clients – I’m using ‘we’ here as we (GraphFit) want to understand exactly how our own clients and coaches are feeling about our services too!

In our experience, we’ve found that it helps to offer a feedback loop with our coaches. This provides a system or an outlet for our team to gather data, analyse it and act on anything we feel necessary.

In its most simplistic form, a client feedback loop is a regular and open line of communication for a client to provide feedback. For us that takes the shape of a monthly ‘playbook’ call.

Not only do we use them to run through current projects and upcoming tasks but it’s an opportunity for the client to give live and direct feedback on the service we’re providing – allowing us as a team to keep almost immediate tabs on our performance.

In a (slightly) more complex form, you could run a survey and send it to your clients after each weekly or monthly call to complete. You can then gather that data and evaluate your performance.

Top Survey Tools:

  1. Survey Monkey
  2. Typeform

Whichever method is best for you, just make sure that it’s straightforward for your client to use. If it’s overcomplicated, people won’t want to do it!

2. Create a Client Education Program

This is one that we’re seeing more and more coaches implement. Client education programs can be used in two ways:

  1. To educate your clients on how to use your services or any other tools you offer (like calorie calculators or weekly check-in sheets)
  2. To educate your clients around larger topics that aid them in their journey with you (like webinars around fat loss strategies or how to manage exercise and menopause… as an example)

Either way, client education programs can offer your clients teachings, how-to videos, courses and even certifications that help them on achieve whatever goal(s) you’ve set out for them to achieve.

Ultimately keeping them happier within your business ecosystem, learning and thriving on new knowledge, than outside of it all.

Top tip: offer a paid platform where you can upload content and create communities that members can subscribe to. Once logged in, you’re able to utilise the program as a longer-term nurturing tool, offering more value than you can shake a stick at.

Top tip 2: Skip and create your own member’s area that houses everything your clients could ever want or need under one roof – completely branded and super-easy to navigate and use.

Custom Member's Area

Save hours on client onboarding, education, and check-ins with your own dedicated member's area.

3. Adopt Client Service Tools

Here, we’re talking about things like CRM systems and email management tools. What can you implement within your business that will make client comms and client management an absolute breeze and help keep your clients more engaged and in your business for longer?

Client service tools are all about streamlining a high volume of clients, reducing the load on you and your support team whilst making it super-easy for clients to keep in touch with you.

Our Top Client Service Tools to Adopt in 2024:

  1. CRM’s
  2. Email Management Tools
  3. Project Management Tools

Key takeaways

  • Calculate your client retention rate
  • Optimise or implement a client retention scheme to help nurture your clients and keep them happier for longer
  • Invest in management tools as you begin to grow, if you’re fumbling over spreadsheets and post-it notes you’re not going to be focused on delivering your impeccable service to your clients
  • Get feedback, whether it’s positive or negative, take the time to understand what your clients are experiencing within your coaching business or gym

what's next?

  • We’ve really appreciate your feedback on our blogs, so if you’ve got a few minutes, could you drop us a comment on this blog and let us know your thoughts? Thank you.
  • We’ve got more blogs to come on these topics so make sure you keep an eye on our website and socials for the heads up!
  • If you want to learn more about generating leads for your gym then check this blog out: 9 Lead generation Strategies for Gym Owners >

keep up to date

Thanks for reading our blog, we hope it’s offered some help in your own fitness website build. If you’ve got any comments or questions, please feel free to leave them on here or drop us an email on [email protected] and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

We’ve got more blogs for you here > Make sure you check back regularly to keep up to date with all things fitness branding. 

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