We speak to sports clubs every single day. Regardless of whether they’re charitable or profitable, the majority of club owners we speak to tell us that their biggest frustration is losing money or spendng too much of it. This is normally down to the fees involved with their sports club membership software.
When you’re a club owner who works full time, might have children to look after or just has a busy life, sitting down and working out where your outgoings are ending up can be a chore. It can also take away precious hours that could be spent coaching.
Between missed fees, being overcharged and paying more in fees than they were expecting, our club owners are normally at a loss when they arrive on the other end of our Support Team’s phone/inbox. It’s through extensive conversations with new (and now long-term, loyal) users at the start of their Coacha journey, that we began to learn about other pieces of club membership software out there and their fees. It’s needless to say we were (and still are) shocked.
Being a sports club membership software by coaches, for coaches, our primary aim isn’t making money. It’s helping other clubs. Sure, like any business, we need to charge for our service in order to keep it running and in continuous development. But we certainly do not charge any more than we need to, in order to do this.
We thought we’d let you the best tips on how to save money when joining a piece of sports club management software.
1. Be sceptical of “free software”
The software that initially seems more attractive to many users is the one marked as “free”. We get it, “free software” in comparison to paying a monthly fee means it’s saving your club money, right? Wrong. We’re yet to find a piece of software that advertise as free, but don’t make a percentage on your transaction fees.
‘They’ve got to make their money somehow’ and ‘a few percent works out as nothing’ we hear many of you saying. Well we hate to say it, but in majority of cases, clubs who are enticed by this clever marketing tactic often end up paying thousands of pounds more per year.
It’s important to ask your potential new provider for a breakdown of their transaction fees. If they mark up their fees, this will include the standard transaction fee of the payment processor, plus an additional charge from the software provider. Therefore, their software isn’t “free” at all.
We’re yet to find a "free" software provider that openly advertises their transaction fee breakdown yet. So be sure to check before you subscribe. It’s important to be with a piece of software who are transparent and who you feel has you best interests at heart.
2. Do the maths on transaction fees
As mentioned above, marking up of transaction fees can add thousands onto your annual club management software cost.
We know that an extra 2-3% doesn’t seem like much, but trust us when we tell you to do the maths. When you work it out over a year, we think you’ll be shocked.
We recently published a blog post comparing the fees of some popular sports club management software providers so you can see what we mean. Take a look, the results may shock you.
3. Check for tiered pricing
If there’s one thing we hate, it’s a tiered pricing structure. Why penalise a sports club (especially many who are non-profit) for wanting to grow their members? You may think the package you fit into now seems okay. But what if you have an influx of members? Or an additional 2 members push you into the next payment bracket which is a substantial amount higher than the initial plan? Think it through properly before you go ahead with a provider.
4. Check for additional add-ons
We’ve all asked “what comes as standard?” at some point in our lives. Whether it be a phone contract, car insurance or a new laptop. The question we always end up asking ourselves is “is the product really worth it, for the potential additional costs on top of the standard costs?”. And the answer is normally ‘no’.
You may start off paying as standard, but their limiting features and clever marketing may lure you into upgrading. And before you know it, you’re paying more than you wanted to in the first place. Just be conscious of what features are additional extras, what you need in a piece of software and the prices if you did need to purchase an add-on.
One thing we’re incredibly proud of is Coacha’s whole model and pricing structure. For £25 per month our users get complete and unlimited access to all Coacha features. There is no tiered pricing structure and we don’t mark up transaction fees. We’re completely transparent and that’s something that will never change. Coacha is software by coaches, for coaches. And we really think that shows. If you’d like to learn a bit more about Coacha and have a look around, sign up for a free trial today and see what you’re missing out on.
P.s. Did you know that Coacha can help organise your finances ready for Making Tax Digital? If you're a profitable sports club who earns more than the VAT threshold, check out Coacha helps with Making Tax Digital here.