Do You Know Who You Are Developing Your Digital Strategy For?
Before acquiring any software, it is important first to acknowledge who the software is being developed for. Is it being developed for the gym owner, the customer, or the software developer? The user or customer must be at the center of any software development, the same is true in the fitness and health industry.
About 12 Min.
Is User Centricity In Fitness App Development The Answer?
Most of the apps in the fitness industry out in the market are created mainly for three personas. Some apps are created with the:
- Software Developers in mind
It doesn't take long to recognize a fitness app that was designed for the software developer. It has clutter all through its user interface, and discovering basic operations is like running through a maze. A customer can only operate the app after watching multiple tutorials on the web.
- The Gym Owners in mind
Some software is designed to cater to the owner or operator. Software created for the gym owner has minimal feedback or options for the user, is a slight struggle to operate, and focuses mainly on monetization, products, and adverts, instead of those features that engage members and provide relevant information to them, such as training plans, automated workout-tracking, or motivating features.
- The User in Mind
The design is with the end-user in mind. It is easy to use, even for first-timers. The User Interface has no clutter, and the entire platform is founded on minimalism. Fitness apps created with the user in mind usually have limited calls to action, monetization, or subscription offers; but focus on making the app engaging and fun to use for the member.
The Two Sides Of a Successful Gym App
For any fitness or health facility’s app to be considered successful, it must find a delicate balance between being centered on the user experience while still enabling the app owner ample utility and access.
An app that prioritizes the user experience, and one that is centered on the customer, is the best option for professionalizing your gym brand. In the fitness industry, there's only one boss, and that’s ultimately the member.
The Importance of User Centricity in Gym Software
Any software needs to be centered and focused on the member’s user experience. The mobile app sector is one of the most competitive software markets; any app that does not live up to its users' expectations is likely to be neglected or uninstalled in an instant. That's why the importance of user-centric fitness software cannot be emphasized further.
Some benefits of User Centricity for an app include:
1. Improves User Experience
User experience is the backbone of any software, and fitness or health apps are no exception. According to Medium, poor functionality is one of the leading reasons for app uninstallation.
This makes user experience and functionality a priority for any facility’s app that wants to stand a chance against the other apps competing for a customer's attention.
It’s important to recognize that the standards for apps are not set by your direct competition, but by large tech firms like Google, Apple, or Facebook. This is the experience you should be striving for!
User-centric development is one way of creating a functional app that is catered to the user experience. Under user-centric development, each software development stage is dedicated to meeting the member’s specific demands, hence improving their user experience.
User-centric software design is also easy to use, values data protection and offers convenience to members. Fitness centers should never forget that members often are short on time and will reward convenience, intuitive usability, and engaging features that they really value and that focus around why they came to your facility in the first place: Their individual health goals and workout routines.
2. Creates Reliable Software
One disadvantage that comes with non-user-centered software is complications that increase the chances of failure. The development of user-centric software is iterative. This means that the development processes are split into sub-tasks that are each vetted for failure hence greatly reducing errors and ambiguities.
User-centric software not only has minimized bugs but also offers seamless updates and over the air upgrades.
- It Offers Compatibility
The development of user-centered software also considers the variety of platforms open to today's software users.
User-centric development respects the myriad of operating systems, devices, and cross-platform connectivity that define present-day software interactions.
Apart from respecting technological trends, user-centered fitness apps offer flexibility to members irrespective of whether they operate on Android or iOS. Moreover, any user-centered app offers cross-connectivity with apps and 3rd party devices that members might use regularly outside the gym, such as wearables, or outdoor workout apps.
3. Journeys With The User
Many members find themselves falling behind schedules or not meeting their commitments for one reason or the other. User-centric gym software is designed to become part of the member’s journey no matter what.
It has inbuilt calendars and reminders, which enables the member to set personal targets and goals. User-centered gym software is also designed to support clients in building their healthy habits and keeping up with their workout routines.
This is one advantage user-centered fitness apps have even over social media apps. It has cause and reason to remind the members of its existence if neglected for long periods.
Studies show that many software users uninstall an app after 5-8 days of neglect. Hence the reminders and notifications of user-centered apps come in handy.
4. Creates Familiarity With The User
A good app or software creates familiarity with its users after use for long periods of time. Due to the personalization added into user-centric software development, users of this software are likely to get used to that software over time.
The familiarity of your members with your app is important as it is one way to create recurring customers and establish true brand loyalty. Once members get used to your personalized gym software, they are likely to become loyal to your app and in turn your facility.
The Key Takeaway
Any fitness or health facility looking for effective software should always consider user-centric app development. One can never go wrong with centering their app development on the customer.