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Overcoming payment limitations can help membership and wellness platforms reach peak performance

Summer’s almost here, so it’s time for membership and wellness platforms to re-align with annual wellness goals – after all, these are an important commitment all year round. But how can platforms provide the best experience for health and wellness clients and members?

In 2021, the value of the global gyms, health and fitness clubs market grew by 2.9%, while in the US, gym and health club revenues in 2022 climbed from $28 billion in 2020 to $32 billion.

However, the health and wellness industry is known for its high rate of customer churn. The International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association, IHRSA, cites a retention rate of just 71.4% for gyms, health clubs and fitness centers. As competition heats up in the battle to win and retain customers, making sure members have the best experience possible is a top priority for clubs.

Every membership and wellness platform wants to provide their health club clients with the best experience possible. This means enabling them to interact smoothly with their members, while offering an exceptional service that increases customer satisfaction and reduces churn.

The quality of the membership platform will have a significant impact on how successful customer engagement is. Slow administration processes, onerous sign-ups, limited payment options, and a lack of flexibility in the club’s systems would all create a disjointed and frustrating customer experience. This makes membership and wellness platforms more crucial than ever.

Get your membership and wellness platform into shape

When developing a membership and wellness platform that delivers on the demands of wellness and health club clients, it’s vital you choose the right payments partner. Here’s what a payment partner and solution checklist should look like:

Seamless, automated onboarding. Embrace a solution that supports real-time approvals to ensure customers can start accepting payments instantly and seamlessly. A swift account set-up, underpinned by real-time approvals so wellness clients can sign-up members quickly and effectively and handle sensitive financial information in a secure manner, will deliver a smooth onboarding process every time.

It takes time and effort to gain a customer’s trust, but it’s very easy to lose it. Glitches during the onboarding process, errors or friction during set-up can all undermine a customer’s confidence and patience and put the relationship in jeopardy. Ensuring that member interactions start positively will result in confidence in the platform from the outset.

Reach across regions. Seek out partners with global payment processing capabilities throughout Europe, the UK, Canada and the US, which will in turn deliver more choice and more opportunity for growth. Equally, the ability to automatically handle payments across multiple currencies and a variety of payment methods – from online payments and cash to digital wallets and bank transfers – will ensure clients can offer the widest possible range of options. Not only will this help them attract more customers, but enable them to retain their existing ones by delivering a more flexible experience.

Flexible billing options. Flexibility is the underlying theme that connects the best platforms, so it’s important to gain greater control with unlimited split payments and the ability to determine payment flows and routing. The best way to support wellness businesses is by providing them with the full range of payment options that their members need within a comprehensive and fully featured membership platform.

Split payments are an increasingly popular option that offers a greater degree of flexibility in the type of memberships clubs can offer. Not all payments partners offer this, so this should be a vital consideration when choosing a partner. Paysafe, for example, offers you access to unlimited split payments, so you can control payment preferences. The ability to handle any type of transaction is essential in providing a seamless experience to end customers – whether that’s recurring monthly payments to a standalone deposit, or a top-up payment for additional services such as personal training.

Truly specialised insight. Choose a solution that’s designed by experts who fully understand the specific requirements of the industry and its customers. This will help address the unique payment processing challenges faced by membership platforms.

It’s key to ensure your membership and wellness platform can support the specific needs of your customers, including being scalable enough to cope with times of increased traffic such as the January rush on subscriptions, and responsive enough to handle any interaction – from managing monthly subscriptions to making changes to membership terms. It must also be secure enough to combat increasingly sophisticated fraud, and agile enough to accommodate a range of payment channels and types of transactions.

A commitment to innovation and consistent support. It’s important to feel comfortable in the knowledge that a membership platform will evolve with customer needs, and deliver the latest payment options that members expect. This flexibility is only achievable with the backing of a payments partner that’s constantly innovating and expanding the payment methods they offer, and can ensure your membership and wellness platform reaches its personal best. Paysafe also offers resources and real-time reporting which can support our partners to grow their businesses, through our developer center and robust partner portal.

To find out how Paysafe can help you get your membership and wellness platform in peak condition, visit our website.