7 Highly Unique Fitness Center & Gym Member Statistics (Infographic)

These unique gym industry statistics are taken from a list of 12 different popular gym brands in the U.S.

Some of these fitness & gym membership statistics are from 2017 while others are current.

Let’s get right into it!


1. Average Profit Margin for Gyms
2. How Much Do Gym Member Cards Actually Cost the Gym?
3. Comparing First Year Monthly Fees vs. Added Fees
4. Percent of Gyms that Have Blogs
5. Comparing Social Media Followings for Gyms
6. Percent of Gyms that Have Online Stores
7. Three Quick Fun Facts

1. Average Profit Margin for Gyms in the U.S.

Now to be clear, we're talking about profit margin.

Profit Margin = Net Income (revenue - expenses) / Net Sales (revenue)

This is another way of saying how much these gyms keep compared to how much they make.

For example, let’s say company A has a revenue of $1 million, and Company B has a revenue of $10 million.

Both have an overall profit of $500,000.

That would mean Company A has a 50% profit margin, and Company B has a 5% profit margin.

Now that we’ve got that taken care of, let’s see those numbers.

The industry average profit margin for gyms is about 25%.

However, some fitness centers are much higher or much lower.

For example, Snap Fitness is closer to 39%, while Planet Fitness is down around 11%.

Both of these companies have over 1,400 franchises each.

2. How Much Do Gym Membership Cards Actually Cost the Gym?

There are mainly two cards that gyms use.

1) Regular non-magnetic card with barcode

2) Magnetic card (for swiping or with proximity sensor)

Obviously there are a lot of variables involved, but here are the estimates:

Simple barcode card = on average $0.20-$2

Magnetic card for security access (with proximity sensor) = on average $15+

However, do take note that these vary.

Variables to consider:

-Whether they are made in-house or bought individually from a supplier. Access cards or fobs are usually bought individually, which is why they cost exponentially more.

-Card printers, if bought, cost around $1,500-2,000.

-Cost of the card reader itself, including installation and maintenance.

3. Comparing First Year Monthly Fees vs. Added Fees

"No installment fee"
"99% off enrollment"
"30-day free trial!"

The problem, which I probably don’t have to explain, is that there are so many hidden fees. There are startup fees, installment fees, equipment fees, card fees, membership fees, fee fees, and so on.

Just so you can see what proportion of your payments are going to what, I researched all of these gyms’ payments plans.

Not surprisingly, every single one of them had fees to go along with their monthly fees.

In the end, I found that roughly 23% of your first year’s payment is spent on fees other than the normal monthly or annual cost.

Truthfully, I thought the fees would have been worse, but 23% is still a decent chunk. And again, it all depends on the gym itself, location, membership plan, and other variables.

4. Percentage of Gyms that Have Blogs

Fact: there are a lot of fitness centers out there.

The big question those fitness centers ask is, 'How do I market my business?'

Again, this is taking into account only 12 gyms, but it does give us an idea of an overall percentage.

From our sample, 83% of larger fitness centers have blogs.

If I can throw my honest opinion out there, I think a lot of the gym blogs out there are very boring and generic.

I don’t have insider SEO analytic numbers for these gyms, but from the eye test, I would guess these blogs don’t have a large role in customer conversion rates.

5. Comparing YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram Followers for Gyms

We know that a key to building a loyal fan base is being proactive on social media.

Facebook is great for planning events. Instagram is great for sharing beautiful photos and short videos. YouTube is obviously the master video search engine. And Twitter is a little bit of everything.

Knowing the proportions for each of these is key to knowing where to invest time, money, and energy.

It also shows where future trends might be going and untapped sources.

I won’t be going into demographics in this post, but looking at those we can also see who is interacting with what on social media. Facebook may be better for ages 55+, and YouTube might be better for teens and young adults.

I’m not going to lie. This was a bit shocking.

Facebook has 42x the followers as YouTube. 42!

Thinking about it now, it kind of makes sense. People might want to “Like” and be part of a gym, but they might not necessarily want to watch every single video the gym makes. Chances are, most of the videos that gyms make are promotional or used for advertising.

And also, customers “Like” a gym because they actually visit the gym, not because they watch their videos.

Whatever the case, Facebook is still the king in 2018 when talking about fitness centers.

6. Percentage of Gyms that Have Online Stores

Some gyms take advantage of the e-Commerce craze by selling clothing and equipment to customers.

Others avoid the unneeded costs and focus on converting customers to their gyms.

From the selected list of gyms, seven have online stores and five do not. 

That would be 58% for those keeping score at home.

7. Three Quick Fun Facts

  1. All five top gym spending cities in the country are somewhere in the Eastern part of the United States.
  2. Only about 15% of the population has a gym membership in the U.S. So how many gym memberships are there in the U.S.? Roughly 60 million.
  3. There are twice as many gym locations as there are McDonald’s.

Congratulations on making it to the end!

Now it’s your turn. What do you want to know more about next?

Tell me in the comments, I try to reply to as many as possible.

As I stated earlier, this is not a cumulative list of all gyms in the U.S. Here is the list of gyms used in this study:

Planet Fitness, Snap Fitness, 24-hour Fitness, Anytime Fitness, LA Fitness, Gold’s Gym, World Gym, Crunch Fitness, Equinox Fitness Clubs, YMCA, Lifetime Fitness

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