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Competitors study of a fitness centre

To better define the offer of an opening activity there are a thousand variables to take into account, most of the time however we start from a standard proposal to go over time to adjust the opening hours and services proposed in relation to the requests actually received from those in the catchment area.


The reality on which each company is based is exclusive, its position with respect to the potential population, the presence of more or less important roads, the structure of the club in terms of size and subdivision of space, the wealth of the territory, all these variables and many others should help to direct the choices of the property towards a targeted proposal.

Not to make mistakes

The observation of competitors is also a determining factor that is often ignored because it is considered reductive compared to the value of the club in structure.

The observation of competitors should not be reduced to the mere reproduction of services presented by others or to the structuring of the club in a different way a priori, but may instead make use of the features that emerged from the analysis of the catchment area in order to obtain the most useful information.

Recognize competitor structures

As a first action it is necessary to recognize the structures that are already present in the territory that for a series of characteristics can be considered as potential competitors: the size of the club, the target audience and its location in the territory are, for example, factors that allow us to understand if a reality has the characteristics to be a competitor in the acquisition of users available in the area of interest or draws from a different band.

It is fundamental to define with criteria what are the structures to be observed, for example, if you are opening a High Level club where the reference target is medium-high, you can not think of observing a Low Cost reality where the offer is € 20.00 rate per month: the services offered will be of interest to a sink that will hardly intersect with the one in definition.

What is the point of observing the proposal of the other activities?

We assume that each business is unique because it intersects the variables seen above that make it so, so the definition of the offer must recognize these characteristics in order to obtain the best result from the territory.
The presence of competitors, however, can intervene, and this often happens, in absorbing a variable rather than others, going to modify the observed balances.

Some examples

For the sake of clarity, we would like to give you a few examples from analyses that have actually been carried out.

The club in question is located outside a large city, in a neighboring country and has no direct visibility on the traffic artery frequented by commuters, the cost of living is slightly lower than the large urban center that acts as a magnet and this results in a higher percentage of families with children and young couples.

A club competitor was found just inside the city for which it is interesting to develop the analysis of the offer and identify the services presented to the commuter target by timetables and type in order to understand the attractive power of the club towards the potential sink.

The opening hours of the gym in the morning starting at seven and the presence of a large number of intensive lessons suggests attention to all workers who are in the city since the early hours of the day.

Vary your proposal

For the planned company, providing for the same early opening would most likely not be very productive, as few people would risk being stuck in the heavy traffic in the morning because of the training done outside the city, much more comfortable is to reach the vicinity of the workplace and then the club.

In the light of this, it is crucial to define an attractive and varied proposal for the afternoon and evening when commuters return. The real strength of the offer must be the ability to attract these potential users with targeted timetables and services.

Age of the reservoir, presence of commuters

Targeted services must also take account of the age of the sink, and commuters are characterised by the presence of different groups, so that the services offered must have different characteristics in order to satisfy all the demands; it is statistically observed that the index of structure of the active population, which represents the degree of ageing of the working age population, comparing the part of the working age population that is older (40-64 years) and the younger (15-39 years), is on average to the disadvantage of the younger groups, however settling on the ratio of thirteen to about ten.

In this example it is therefore possible to see how the presence of people belonging to a specific target can be reduced and modified by taking into consideration not only the territory but also the offer of other facilities.

Always starting from the same club, it is interesting to observe a second competitor that, even if of a slightly lower level, presents itself to the public with: similar prices, opening hours during the week that are rather in line but that are considerably reduced during the weekend, a rather scarce course schedule that concentrates the majority of the offer in the evening hours.

As a first consideration it is easy to assume that the weekend is potentially available to the company in the project, people who cannot train during the week or particularly like to devote some time to wellness when they have the opportunity are not attracted by the competitor structure.

It is fundamental to define with criteria the structures to be observed, for example, if you are opening a High Level club where the target audience is medium high, you can not think of observing a low cost reality where the offer is € 20.00 rate per month.

Secondly, we have to consider who these people are; most of them are workers, men and women with families who have the opportunity to spend a few hours at the weekend rather than the elderly, who generally prefer other moments to attend clubs. In this way the offer of services, in type and time, can be set in order to meet the right target.

The presence of courses in the competitor's schedule, mainly during evening hours, instead leaves room for the activity under observation to set up lessons for all those who have availability in the morning; among the users we find a good number of elderly people, housewives and shift workers. Experience tells us that pensioners prefer to do gymnastics in the morning, perhaps early in the morning, so it will certainly be beneficial to attract this pool of people by offering them lessons and target services.

The presence of offices in the vicinity of the activity under observation leaves room for the definition of a lunch break proposal in line with the request of a rather young and active public. Once again, the observation of the target competitor allows the company in analysis to recognize any possibilities, in this case a good availability of pensioners within the population not absorbed by the offer of other realities.

As always, the structuring of a service can only be successful if effective communication is established. Reaching the elderly available rather than the employees on lunch breaks will not be immediate just because the service has been set up, it will be necessary to work with marketing aimed at reaching the people concerned.


Observing competitors in this way means, where possible, setting up a different and more effective proposal for the present reality and the activity under analysis. Geomarketing is therefore a useful tool for setting up any fitness and wellness facility; an in-depth analysis of competitors allows the potential that emerged from an initial observation to be modified. This analysis can be set during the opening phase of a club as it has already started to get to know the territory better.
It is necessary to renew the need to intersect several variables in the reading of the data, because, to determine the success or not of each choice all contribute, from the demographic to the economic, urban, structural and other, in short a thousand different strokes contribute each time to draw a single framework on which to define the right offer for each company.

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