ZenPlanner Review (Overview, Pricing, and Features)


As an proprietor of a gymnasium or studio, considered one of your earliest and most significant selections might be deciding on the precise administration software program to fit your specific enterprise. You and your shoppers will work together with the software program day-after-day.

Having the options you could do enterprise in line with your imaginative and prescient and the reliability to function easily are large considerations. In any case, you began this enterprise out of a love for health, not difficult backend administration!

That can assist you on this vital selection, this overview will comprehensively cowl one of many main gamers out there of gymnasium administration software program, Zen Planner.

Firm Overview

Zen Planner is a Colorado-based firm whose software program is utilized by over 5,500 gyms, yoga studios, martial arts colleges, and Crossfit packing containers. The corporate, based in 2006, has grown quickly since 2017 when it was acquired by Daxco, one of many premier suppliers of large-scale facility administration software program for multi-location well being golf equipment.

Zen Planner represents an choice finest suited to small companies. Whereas it offers the aptitude to arrange linked accounts for administration of a number of places, it’s primarily designed to serve single places with membership bases fewer than 250 shoppers.

As a web-based platform, not requiring software program to be put in or information to be saved to any of the subscriber’s gadgets, Zen Planner is very cell and accessible.

Moreover, Zen Planner has an “A” ranking from the Higher Enterprise Bureau and has acquired native and nationwide awards as a extremely rated employer, most notably Exterior Journal’s Finest Locations to Work 2013-2018.


Options Overview

Zen Planner boasts a protracted record of options from the essential, universally used member check-in to specialty capabilities like ability and rank belt monitoring for martial arts studios. On this part, I’ll element the advantages and, simply as importantly, the draw back of every function. Let’s dig into all the things you are able to do:

Internet & Smartphone Apps

Whereas a touted function of Zen Planner’s platform, its cell apps are its biggest weak point.

Whereas gymnasium homeowners will discover some restricted comfort within the capability to rapidly add a membership or change a consumer’s saved fee info, the Zen Planner Workers App and Zen Planner Member App appear to have been created as an compulsory afterthought quite than the mainstay they might probably be.

Starting with the Workers App, its advantages are the flexibility to simply check-in shoppers for courses/appointments, to alter their fee methodology on file, and to course of overdue funds. The final of those advantages really reveals the app’s obvious weak point: the shortcoming to course of on-time funds. Right here’s the priority:

If the builders troubled to incorporate fee processing performance in an effort to take overdue funds, why not permit customers to make the most of that capability at some other time? To exhibit the issue, think about your consumer, not on automated draft, needs to pay their month-to-month dues in particular person.

As a employees member using this app, you might be unable to enter the fee until it’s already late and an alert has appeared on the member’s profile.

Whereas there’s all the time the choice of opening the software program in your desktop pc and using the total model to finish the transaction, it begs the query, “if there’s an app that may course of funds, why should I am going to this hassle?”.

Persevering with on to the Member App, whereas its claimed advantages are that it permits members to view schedules, reserve courses, and make funds, for lots of gymnasium members it’s an expertise that can finish in frustration. Member App customers overwhelmingly report issues with the app failing to load or crashing so continuously as to render the app virtually unusable.

Zen Planner’s apps presently lack customization choices like branding with the title, colours, or emblem of the gymnasium. Till Zen Planner completes a significant overhaul of them, it’s really most likely finest that approach for gymnasium homeowners who don’t care to have their enterprise related to such poorly rated apps:

Zen Planner apps in the app store


Exercise Creation

Amongst Zen Planner’s marketed options is the flexibility to create exercises and observe trainees’ efficiency. The usefulness of this perform is hit and miss; will probably be based mostly in your gymnasium’s specific model of exercises and programming.

Whereas clearly yoga studios and martial arts colleges may have no use of this function, even private coaching companies and a few offering group coaching will discover disappointment within the restricted capabilities of this portion of the software program.

Exercise monitoring inside Zen Planner appears to be a function supposed just for use in Crossfit affiliate packing containers and gymnasiums that make the most of an identical Exercise Of the Day-model method.

In case you are unfamiliar with Crossfit WODs, they’re the hallmark coaching model of Crossfit packing containers and different cross-training amenities. For the aim of this text, we’d like not concentrate on specific actions carried out in a WOD, simply the general construction.

A WOD is a exercise with a standardized workload; all members might be assigned the identical variety of reps and the identical weight (when relevant).

The variable of the exercise, certainly the crux of all the aggressive nature of it, is the time the person trainee takes to finish it or, as one other instance, the variety of rounds they’ll carry out in a predetermined period of time.

The vital side that pertains to how monitoring a WOD differs from monitoring different coaching strategies is {that a} specific WOD doesn’t change over time, it could be reused as many occasions because the coach wishes with the one enter essential for monitoring the exercise being the members’ single-variable efficiency outcome.

Thus the coach can, in a single occasion, create the exercise in Zen Planner and by no means want to change it.

Distinction that with the predominant method of a energy and conditioning coach who guides a trainee via a progressive coaching program wherein the work requirement of every exercise and it’s element elements must be intentionally elevated over time because the trainee improves.

This might require a sturdy exercise constructing and monitoring software program sturdy in its ease-of-use when updating the exercises themselves.

That is, sadly, past the scope of Zen Planner’s exercise monitoring function. To place it bluntly, the system is just too gradual and unintuitive and with no train library, a coach would discover himself spending an inordinate period of time attempting to bend this function to his objective.

However, making a exercise could also be worthwhile for the coach who should solely do it as soon as to then be used advert infinitum.

Open Workouts in Zen Planner

Crossfit coaches and field homeowners will admire that the exercise monitoring system comes pre-loaded with templates of the well-known Crossfit Open exercises that may be rapidly applied with no less-than-enjoyable go to to the Create New Exercise part.

Level of Sale

Retail checkout in Zen Planner

Within the present market, many gyms from boutique studios to massive well being golf equipment select to function a retail income stream to enhance their normal providers.

These utilizing Zen Planner can benefit from the comfort of a POS and stock monitoring function that works alongside the gymnasium’s membership gross sales and billing with out the necessity for a separate software program platform.

By means of the setup software, you’ll be able to add objects and set their costs and gross sales tax charges. You need to use the stock perform in tandem to trace amount readily available of every merchandise and arrange alerts notifying employees to reorder inventory for objects falling below your {custom} amount thresholds.

As soon as objects have been arrange, they’re prepared on the market via the built-in POS perform by employees or through the non-obligatory Shopper Self-Service system.

Shopper Self-service

The consumer self-service function is an choice that may streamline your gymnasium’s day by day operations or ease the burden on a enterprise with few employees members out there for customer support.

At your discretion, you’ll be able to allow shoppers to make the most of a self-service kiosk (an IPad is beneficial) to check-in for appointments, make funds, buy retail objects, and even full a brand new membership sign-up.

Amongst these choices, you could make the most of as many or as few as you want based mostly on your online business mannequin. Whereas self check-in for a exercise looks like an apparent profit, it’s your selection as a gymnasium proprietor to find out whether or not or not a extra important operation like beginning a membership is one thing you entrust to the shoppers themselves.

Program and Schedule Design

Program Setup in Zen Planner

Outlining your gymnasium’s varied packages, class varieties, and schedule is the primary logical step in getting your administration software program to give you the results you want.

The account admin would go to the Setup display screen and create (if relevant) a number of packages or classes and, inside every program, the precise courses. For instance, a gymnasium which options weight coaching and yoga might generate this construction for his or her program:

    • Weight coaching [program]
      • Newbie class
      • Intermediate class
      • Superior class
    • Yoga [program]
      • Sizzling Yoga class
      • Circulation class
      • Barre Fusion class

For every class, the consumer might then create a schedule of particular occasions when the category happens.

Why is that this vital?

Designating the time of every class controls when it’s going to seem for check-in to your members do you have to decide to trace their attendance. I extremely suggest you do in all circumstances however on the subject of gyms utilizing a enterprise mannequin based mostly on class limits (3/week, 12/month, and so on.), using this function is a no brainer.

Regardless of the excessive diploma of freedom to create as many packages and courses as wanted, Zen Planner’s scheduling system has one important draw back:

On the subject of particular person appointments corresponding to private coaching classes or consultations, including or altering these one-off occasions to the calendar is a problem, to place it mildly.

Let’s say, for example, {that a} coach’s personal teaching consumer is often on a recurring schedule of 5 pm on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. This week, nevertheless, they wish to transfer Friday’s appointment to the morning.

Slightly than a easy drag-and-drop on the calendar or two-click time adjustment as one may hope for, the coach might be required to click on via a number of home windows again within the Setup part, basically creating that new calendar entry from scratch.

When contemplating that there could also be a excessive quantity of shoppers, all of whom require flexibility occasionally, this inefficiency can add as much as fairly a little bit of wasted time for a coach or gymnasium proprietor.

Create Membership Choices

Along with your varied packages and courses created, the subsequent step is establishing who can entry every program and their value to take action. That is the place creating membership varieties and packages are available in.

Similar to creating the packages, including membership choices will be as advanced or so simple as you want to make it. Zen Planner offers you the liberty to create memberships and hyperlink them with any mixture of your providers.

It’s possible you’ll, for instance, create a membership sort with entry to weight coaching teaching classes with a restrict of three per week and Open Fitness center use with limitless visits every week.

Membership varieties that might be used often for many shoppers will be saved as defaults in order that they needn’t be created from scratch for every new member.

Managers will, nevertheless, make use of the Add Customized Membership choice in which you will immediately create a membership with distinctive parameters corresponding to a particular low cost or some other circumstance that falls exterior the traditional pre-determined membership settings.

The seemingly limitless choices for establishing memberships are one of many Zen Planner platform’s strongest choices.

Let the crew at Train.com present you learn how to develop and handle your health enterprise higher!


Setting up email automations in Zen Planner

As a gymnasium proprietor or coach, the extra features of the enterprise you’ll be able to automate, the extra you’ll be able to concentrate on coaching and consumer relationships. Thus a function like automated emails to your shoppers is a must have in your administration software program.

Zen Planner comes with a default record of prompt automated messages that the consumer has solely to activate they usually’ll be up and working and streamlining their enterprise. Amongst these are fee reminders, receipts, overdue notices, and birthday messages.

There are dozens of templates set as much as auto-fill the suitable details about the consumer’s title, membership sort, and related dates. Moreover, all emails will be personalized supplying you with the flexibility to create an automation based mostly on any piece of knowledge you observe in Zen Planner.

It’s possible you’ll, for instance, create the next sequence for a brand new member:

  1. Welcome e-mail after the primary go to
  2. Test-in e-mail after the primary two weeks
  3. Request for a optimistic overview on social media after 4 weeks
  4. Introduction to referral program and referral request after six weeks

Through the use of the platform on this trend, you’ll be able to reinforce the member’s choice to hitch, construct rapport, and probably even achieve new consumer leads all with out lifting a finger after the preliminary set-up.

Within the fashionable health trade, for those who’re not utilizing software program with e-mail automation you’re doing your self and your online business a disservice.

Knowledge Reporting

Dashboard showing Zen Planner reports

Profitable gymnasium homeowners always keep in tune with the efficiency of their enterprise, not simply their shoppers. Fast entry to your gymnasium’s essential information each day is a key function of administration software program and one which Zen Planner does fairly nicely.

A go to to the Dashboard will allow you to view stories of the gymnasium’s monetary statistics, attendance, and gross sales. Whereas there are numerous helpful default stories that mechanically seem on this display screen corresponding to memberships expiring quickly, upcoming funds, and projected income, the consumer can create {custom} stories for any information their enterprise collects.

The dashboard view will be personalized to incorporate whichever stories you discover most related to the day-to-day operation of the enterprise in order that with only one click on you might have entry to the pertinent information.


Whereas most gymnasium homeowners go for the simplicity of one-time upfront funds or month-to-month recurring funds, Zen Planner permits memberships to be arrange with each conceivable fee schedule from a easy chronological foundation (weekly, bi-monthly, and so on.) to punch card model choices the place the member might be billed once more after a specified variety of check-ins.

Zen Planner can additional enable you to keep organized in your online business’s bookkeeping by permitting you to categorize funds, together with these on automated draft, in line with program or membership sort. Thus you’ll be able to observe the monetary efficiency of every of your gymnasium’s packages independently along with the general income of the enterprise.

Zen Planner makes it pretty easy so as to add or delete fee strategies, flip auto funds on or off, and examine fee historical past for a selected consumer. Ideally, on the time of onboarding a brand new member, a card is positioned on file for automated billing and little backend account administration is critical.

Nevertheless, as a result of bank cards get stolen or expire and members sometimes change fee methodology out of choice, the benefit of updating fee strategies inside Zen Planner is a noteworthy attribute.

Built-in Fee Processing

Choosing a fee processing service is a vital a part of establishing your online business for monetary success. Like all membership administration/billing platforms, a third-party firm should are available in to play to make sure that if you click on Cost Invoice, cash really strikes out of your consumer’s account to yours:

That’s your fee processing firm and their charges and processing time could make an enormous distinction in your gymnasium’s profitability.

Subscribers to Zen Planner will wish to give critical consideration to using their partnership with Paysimple for card fee processing built-in with the software program.

As clients of their most popular billing software program, Paysimple grants a reduction to Zen Planner customers. As a result of simply .05 p.c charge distinction could make a distinction of 1000’s of {dollars} over the lifetime of your online business, this low cost is price trying into.

A further profit to utilizing Zen Planner’s Paysimple integration is the elimination of additional steps when points pop up within the regular course of enterprise. Let’s say, for instance, you owe a buyer a refund for some purpose.

With some other third get together processor, you’d must contact the processing firm to provoke the refund along with reversing the fee on the consumer’s account in Zen Planner. In the event you opted to make use of Paysimple, nevertheless, the refund will be initiated straight in Zen Planner with no further steps.

Workers Administration

Together with managing your shoppers, Zen Planner can present very important capabilities for gymnasium homeowners who make use of trainers, salespeople, and operations employees.

The software program options the flexibility so as to add employees members and set the schedule and tasks for every one. For instance, the admin might add a weightlifting coach to the employees and set him as the first coach for morning energy coaching classes. Upon viewing the calendar, different employees and members would then see his task to these courses on the schedule.

Naturally, all employees may have some event to work together along with your gymnasium’s administration software program so Zen Planner offers you the flexibility to set employees permissions for every particular person worker.

For instance, you could want to prohibit private trainers to the flexibility to verify shoppers in for classes and examine their remaining variety of classes whereas giving managers or these concerned in gross sales have the flexibility to provoke or terminate memberships and course of funds.

Zen Planner offers the gymnasium proprietor the flexibility to trace employees exercise and customise the position of every employees member within the enterprise.

For employees who’ve been assigned an hourly pay charge, Zen Planner may function a fundamental time clock.


Web site Design and Integration

Zen Planner integrated websites

For gymnasium homeowners with the funds to afford it, maybe one of the simplest ways to benefit from all Zen Planner has to supply is having their crew develop an Built-in Web site for your online business. Zen Planner can create a {custom} web site with handy instruments inbuilt that hyperlink on to your Zen Planner account.

For example, when a brand new customer to your web site offers their info in a session request type, they are often mechanically added to your prospect administration system in Zen Planner.

From there they’d mechanically be entered into the built-in prospect curating e-mail funnel, significantly will increase their chance of visiting your gymnasium in particular person and changing into a member.

It’s the final technique to make the most of Zen Planner and the perfect resolution for the enterprise proprietor searching for essentially the most environment friendly, hands-off technique to run their gymnasium administration software program. This added comfort and diminished stress, nevertheless, doesn’t come low cost:

Relying on the variety of members at your gymnasium and your collection of sure premium options, having Zen Planner construct and preserve your web site will value your online business between $400 and $1000 per thirty days.

Who is that this health software program for?

Goal Market/Positioning

Zen Planner is marketed as a administration and advertising and marketing resolution for Boutique Gyms, Crossfit Associates, Conventional Martial Arts and MMA colleges, in addition to Yoga Studios.

What do these customers have in frequent?

All present premium providers like guided instruction in a private or group surroundings. A lot of Zen Planner’s options could be superfluous to the kind of enterprise promoting easy facility entry for permission to make use of an open gymnasium ground.

Small to Medium dimension health companies providing a better stage of service and sometimes multi-faceted membership choices want software program with the flexibleness to function a number of packages and comfort options which justify shoppers’ premium worth of membership.

Moreover, it’s the small enterprise, primarily, which Zen Planner’s all-in-one bundle appeals to. Right here’s why:

Whereas the big nationwide franchise gymnasium with 8,000 members has the cash and infrastructure to speculate a whole bunch of 1000’s of {dollars} in separate specialty software program platforms and separate employees for coaching, gross sales, and advertising and marketing, small enterprise homeowners have a restricted funds and should usually play quite a few roles inside their enterprise.

For that purpose, they are going to often search the one resolution to all their enterprise’s wants.

Trial, Registration, and Set-up

As beforehand talked about, the administration software program you decide to utilizing in your online business is a big choice that can have an effect on your stress stage and your earnings. How do you be sure you’re selecting the correct one?

Higher take it for a take a look at drive!

Most administration software program suppliers supply a trial of some kind and Zen Planner isn’t any completely different. On their web site, you might be invited to register for a free dwell demo of the software program guided by somebody from Zen Planner’s assist crew.

Following the demo, potential subscribers are granted entry to the software program on a trial foundation for 14 days to check its options. You’ll be able to apply creating memberships, generate a schedule, and see if its exercise monitoring is of use to your online business.

In the event you determine Zen Planner is best for you, after subscribing they’ll present three onboarding classes wherein a assist crew member will information you through video chat and display screen sharing via the method of establishing the software program to match your gymnasium’s wants. When you’re in enterprise, you’ll be able to entry extra assist via Zen Planner’s intensive library of online tutorials.

Zen Planner demo signup


Consumer Perspective

Zen Planner’s repute is usually superb with optimistic scores from the well-known overview websites Capterra (4.5 / 5), GetApp (4.3 / 5), and Finances Online (9.5 / 10).

Looking the various consumer scores, a few tendencies stand out:

Customers who charge Zen Planner the very best concentrate on the matters of customer support and worth for the cash.

The Finest…

“Customer support is all the time prime notch. If a consultant can’t reply your query, they’ll analysis and supply an answer often by the top of the day.”

“Assist crew is nice, and actually helps within the onboarding course of. They’re very quick in response time and provides many choices for serving to resolve conditions.”

For customers who gave Zen Planner poor scores, the focal factors have been technical performance or hassle with particular person options pertinent to their particular enterprise. The identical customers account for the uncommon buyer assist complaints reporting being let down when searching for assist for his or her concern.

The Worst…

“Our gymnasium runs about 250 classes per week. They’re all completely different. ZP’s exercise builder doesn’t work for this. We have been spending ~Three hours per day inputting exercises. It couldn’t scale. So now we don’t observe exercises within the software program.”

“The wants we said for our enterprise have been easy and we have been assured that Zenplanner might carry out them. Going via the onboarding course of was like repeatedly being informed ‘no it may’t try this’ and ‘sorry, no it may’t try this both’.

In abstract, Zen Planner appears to verify all of the packing containers for gymnasium homeowners who use quite simple working fashions of their enterprise. These with solely a pair membership varieties and solely group courses (the simplest to set-up) have the perfect expertise.

Nevertheless, in case your gymnasium’s day-to-day wants would contain among the extra specialised options Zen Planner advertises, it’s price completely verifying previous to committing to the service.


Zen Planner incorporates a tiered pricing mannequin based mostly in your gymnasium’s variety of lively memberships. An lively membership could be any particular person in your database as a member, even when their membership is on maintain or has a overdue steadiness. Not included are individuals saved in your database as prospects or alumni of your gymnasium.

Zen Planner gives each month-to-month and annual funds, the latter entailing a reduction of roughly $20-30 every month relying on which quantity tier your gymnasium falls in.

High Direct Rivals

In health facility administration software program, a few of Zen Planner’s prime opponents are:

MindBody, one of the crucial broadly used platforms as a result of its compatibility in a number of industries.

Exercise.com, the one software program providing full custom-branding for your online business’s on-line platform and cell apps.

Virtuagym, a lower-price software program choice for gymnasium homeowners not essentially searching for the total array of options of an all-in-one platform.

The Backside Line

For small companies within the health trade on the lookout for software program to handle their gymnasium, Zen Planner is price a glance. Whereas it has all the essential requirements like billing and stories lined, you’ll must carefully look at whether or not its extra specialised options meet your wants as they don’t seem to be universally relevant or dependable.

It’s a critical choice when selecting how your gymnasium will run and what instruments will assist make it a hit. Don’t depart something to probability and accept nothing lower than what’s precisely proper for your online business.


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