40 Questions Data Can Answer for your Sports Business

Data is everywhere.

While it may seem overwhelming, it is an incredibly valuable tool that you can use to drive growth at your business.

According to Gallup, businesses that leverage client behavior data outperform other businesses in sales by more than 85%. Similarly, research shows that insight-driven businesses are growing at an average of 30% each year.

In order to grow your business and gain a competitive edge, you must know how to effectively analyze your data points and uncover the insights that will help you make smarter business decisions.

But, with so much data available to you, how do you know where to start? We’ve put together a list of 40 questions that your sports business data can answer. Even if you start with manually tracking just a few of these, you’ll be able to gain a wider perspective of your business and best position yourself for growth. Let’s dive in!


Related: Data, Analytics, and Insights: Why Lacking All 3 is Costing You


Questions to ask about revenue (1-10)

Revenue data is the foundation to everything else. You have to know where your customers spend money. Once you know that this data is accurate, you can start looking at all kinds of valuable KPIs and use data to look at metrics such as lifetime value, customer lifecycle, your product mix, and so much more.


How much revenue am I bringing in?

While a seemingly simple question, revenue is ultimately one of the most important metrics for your business to track. Having a strong business management software will help you to stay on top of your finances by providing an accurate, up-to-date picture of your business health, consequently, empowering you to make smarter business decisions.


How much of my revenue is collected via card payments vs cash/ check?

You can also drill down even further into your revenue numbers to see where your money is specifically coming from. Are your clients primarily purchasing lessons or clinics via credit card, or do they tend to write checks? Knowing this information will help you gain a better understanding of your clients, and your prospective clients, so you can meet them where they are.

  1. If you are a heavy cash/ check business, then there is opportunity for you to seek out a payments provider to process credit cards. In fact, research shows that this leads to over 15% more per transaction.
  2. If your sports business already collects credit card payments, then you should keep an eye on your rates to reduce costs. In addition, you can offer more payment methods such as touch-less payments (Apple Pay, Google Pay, etc.).


What is my highest revenue-driving event type?

Similarly, you can analyze your revenue by your event type. This will help you gain clarity on which offerings are your most successful. Once you gain these insights, you will be able to make informed decisions about adding additional offerings or time slots that will best serve the needs of your clients.

Some questions you can ask include

  1. Are we diversified enough?
  2. Are we under pricing? Over pricing?
  3. What % of clients make up this revenue stream vs. lower revenue streams?


How are my revenue projections trending compared to our goals?

Ultimately, your revenue is more than a number. Looking ahead to your business goals, are your revenue numbers where they should be? Analyzing revenue data will help you ensure you are on track to meet your goals, rather than relying on a general “sense” of where you are and where you should be at any given point.


Additional questions to ask about revenue:
  • How much am I earning on Individual Instruction vs. Clinics?
  • How much revenue am I making per event or product type?
  • How much revenue am I making per membership?
  • What are the ideal cross-sell opportunities for clients?
  • By how much can I raise my prices and still retain customers?
  • How much recurring revenue can I expect next month?


Questions to ask about your clients (11-23)

Yes, your sports business data help you access information about your business health. But, it can also help you gain a better understanding of your clients. Using data analytics to draw information about your athletes will help you both keep your clients and find new clients, refine your offerings, and cater your marketing toward specific demographics.


What is the average tenure of my clients?

When an athlete begins training at your business, how long do they typically work out with you? Chances are, you’ll find that many of your clients tend to stick around for a while. You may consider targeting athletes at a certain age to engage them for a long period of time. Or, you may also consider rewarding your loyal clients with added perks or benefits.

Related: Guide to Running Successful Promotions (+ Free Benefit Analysis Template)


Where are my clients coming from, and where can I find more of them?

You can also analyze client demographics to determine where your clients are located. Knowing this will help you to target your offerings in specific areas, or make decisions about future expansion. For example, Louis Whitlow, owner of The Compound 256, uses Upper Hand’s demographic heat map when making decisions about where to pilot new offerings, so that he is able to offer these programs in his athletes’ back yards.

Related: User Experience & Reporting: Why The Compound 256 chose Upper Hand over EZFacility, others


When was the last time a client trained with your business? How long has it been since the client last visited your facility?

You may have heard the phrase “success is the sum of a lot of small things done correctly.” Consistency is key, especially from an athlete development standpoint. So, it’s important that you keep your clients engaged and consistently training at their business so that they can continue to experience improvement and success.

  • Which characteristics do your most frequent clients share?
  • What percentage of your clients are disengaged with your business?
  • What is the average number of classes/ training sessions a client attends each month?


Which clients are at risk for churning next month?

By identifying the characteristics of your recently churned clients, you will be able to analyze potential indicators that ultimately lead to that decision. As a result, you can target those at-risk clients to re-engage them before they churn.


How many members do I have today compared to this time last year?

While a current snapshot of your business is very important when making decisions, it’s also important to track your business success and growth over time. So, you can use data and analytics to compare data YoY. One example of this could be to examine the growth of your memberships. This will help you validate marketing strategies, determine which perks are most important to your clients, and how much recurring revenue you have generated within a particular time frame.


Additional questions data can answer about your clients
  • What is the gender breakdown of my athletes?
  • What is the average age of my clients?
  • How satisfied are my clients?
  • Who are our best clients?
  • Who is our ideal client?


Questions to ask about your events and offerings (24-31)

In addition to better understanding your clients’ habits, it’s also important to incorporate your sports business data when making decisions about your offerings. Collecting feedback is a great way to gain clarity on what your clients say they want. But, digging into the data will help you determine which offerings are actually the most successful. Plus, this will help you most effectively market your upcoming events and hit your registration goals.


Is this year’s clinic registration on track compared to last year’s registration numbers?

When comparing event success YoY, you may want to see if your event registrations are on track. This will help you validate your marketing strategies, and ensure that your offerings reach maximum capacity, thus maximizing revenue.

For which events do you typically see a waitlist?

As with the revenue-related questions, knowing which events are the most sought after will help you gain clarity on how you structure your programming and better understand your clientele. One way you can utilize this information is to target these groups of clients for new programs or classes. Alternatively, you may consider adding additional events to accommodate the demand.


Other questions about event registration:
  • Which days fielded the most registrations?
  • How many athletes signed up for my event compared to how many actually showed up on the day of the event?
  • How did my clients find out about an event?
  • Which marketing promotions worked, and which didn’t?
  • How fast do my events fill up?
  • How should I price my offerings compared to my competitors?


Questions about your daily operations (32-40)

When used correctly, your sports business data can also influence your daily operations. Whether you’ve been in business for years or are just opening your doors, you can track key data points that help you do business better. From retaining your staff members to preparing for a busy season, data can help relieve the stress associated with running your business.

Which months are your peak training months?

It’s normal to experience some ebb and flow in business from month to month, for example depending on the sports season. If you offer sport-specific training, you may see your traffic pick up in the off-season, and settle a bit while in-season. Similarly, fitness businesses may see an uptick in training at the start of the new year, due to the ever-popular new year’s resolution to get in shape. Knowing this information will help you better understand your business health, and be able to anticipate down periods.


Which times of day or days of the week are busier than others?

In addition, you can also drill down into the data even further to look at your business operations at a weekly or daily level. You may notice that Mondays through Wednesdays are typically busier, with your clients traveling for competitions on the weekends. Or, you might find that your early morning or late evening strength classes are busiest, as they accommodate the traditional workday schedule. By coupling this data with your client demographics, you’ll be able to make decisions that allow you to capture the most clients and best position your training for success.


How long do your staff typically stay at your business?

Not only can your sports business data offer insights about your clients, but it can also uncover trends related to your staff or employees. By understanding the typical lifespan of your employees at your business, you can better anticipate when your staff may be looking to move on. Additionally, it can help you make decisions about how you hire or recruit new employees to work at your business.


Additional questions about your day to day operations:
  • Which staff member executes the most training/ lessons per month?
  • Which areas of your facility are the most widely used?
  • What are the characteristics of your most successful staff members?
  • What are the characteristics of your staff members that have recently left?
  • How much am I spending on payroll within a given time period?
  • What is the payroll breakdown for each staff member?


Related: 6 Staff Management Tips for your Sports + Fitness Business


Wrapping Up

There’s more to your business than just what you see in your day-to-day. Analyzing the data your sports business puts out will empower you to dig into your business and fuel your business growth. If you have a plan for how you will utilize your sports business data, you can add an incredible amount of value to your operations. More importantly, you’ll better understand your clients and your staff to best support their goals alongside your own.


Data is the future of the industry. And it’s already here. If you’re interested in how you can incorporate data solutions into your business operations, schedule a demo of Upper Hand today.


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