Electric Vehicle Charging at Health Clubs
How the installation of electric vehicle charging points will help to reinvigorate the post-pandemic health club market.
Within this blog we discuss the many reasons why EV chargers enhance health and wellness club value offering, helping to draw in the green customers of the future.
Enhancing current value offering to build back stronger
Despite being one of the worst-hit industries from the pandemic, health and wellness clubs are anticipated to experience a strong growth rebound once lockdown restrictions are relaxed and life turns to normality. According to research from Barclays Corporate Banking an additional 4.8 million Brits, or 9% of the UK population, now say health and wellness is ‘extremely important’ to them after Covid-19. It is expected that this acceleration in customer demand for health and wellness offerings could drive an additional £2bn revenue boost to the industry.
This is supported by data from Health Club Management which states that almost 90% of customers intend to spend the same or more on being active after lockdown. In spite of this, the industry will still be subject to high, and increasing levels of internal and external competition as seen pre-pandemic.
It stands to reason then that clubs making the right investments now, expanding offerings to include higher value-added services such as EV charging, have the greatest potential of building back stronger.
Consumer club choice is driven by convenience
Research has shown that EV owners tend to be higher earning than the average population. Owners are predominantly below-middle-age men (30-45) in full time employment (i.e. Millennials and Gen X). Research also indicates other market segments for EV’s likely to take hold include higher income females and retirees/pensioners. This demographic aligns with the core health club member group, who have higher than average levels of disposable income.
According to a report by Alligera Strategies, fitness club attendees rank convenience as more important than affordability, with 41% of respondents citing this as a reason for joining their fitness club. Considering that full-time working professionals tend to have less than average leisure time, this signifies that convenience will be a key differentiation factor when choosing which health clubs to attend.
EV charging facilities increase levels of convenience for health club users as they can top up charge as they work out, providing a competitive advantage over rival clubs.
EVs are here to stay & businesses must respond to and support this change
EV adoption in the UK has been proliferating year on year, underpinned by supportive policies and technology advances. According to SMMT vehicle data , Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) sales increased 185.9% to 108,205 units in 2020. And with the latest update by the government announcing all cars sold by 2030 are to be electric, the demand for more convenient charging stations that suit drivers’ lifestyles is only going to increase.
It is therefore vital that businesses such as health clubs assist in building a robust and reliable charging network, to give drivers the simplest and smoothest experience possible.
Demonstrating social responsibility by going green
Installing EV charging points at Health and Wellness clubs demonstrates an active effort in achieving UK Green Growth strategy ambitions, whilst enhancing the club’s image to appear both socially and environmentally conscious. According to Public Health England, poor air quality is the largest environmental risk to public health, leading to the premature deaths of at least 40,000 people a year in the UK alone. Installing EV chargers would help to combat this pertinent problem as one of the key barriers to electric vehicle adoption is the need for a reliable public charging network.
Investment in the network would therefore contribute to increased EV adoption, thus reducing tailpipe emissions and enhancing air quality. Displaying concern for public health outside of the gym will help to demonstrate high levels of corporate social responsibility, which can in turn enhance business reputation. Such benefits have already been recognised by some industry players, for example, Bannatyne group Health Clubs began installing EV charging in their club facilities in 2018.
Increasing sales & generating new income streams
A typical electric car (60kWh battery) takes just under 8 hours to charge from empty-to-full with a 7kw charging point, meaning most electric cars could be topped up by at least 10% in less time than it takes to do a typical spin class, ensuring customers a trouble-free journey home. Members may also decide to spend additional time within the fitness club in order to ensure their car is fully topped up, increasing revenue potential through money spent on add-on treatments or at club dining facilities. Operators may also benefit from visually appealing state-of-the-art charging facilities, such as our Pilot Group Plus charger, on display at the front of their premises, helping to entice customers.
The health club industry is worth over £6 billion in the UK alone, with advertising and sponsorships being a lucrative element. Charging stations with advertising capabilities will therefore be a welcome addition to generate revenue for health clubs, providing opportunities to advertise to a targeted audience. The charging stations can also be monetised as parking meters, further providing revenue for the club.
Communicating Covid safety
When considering which EV charger to install at your facilities, it is important to have customer safety in mind. Many gym-goers are relatively apprehensive about the prospect of going back to the gym due to concerns over the possibility of contracting Covid-19 or other illnesses. For example, 93 per cent of 65-74-year-olds stated that cleanliness was ‘very important’ to them in the National Post Lockdown Survey. Such concerns can be reduced through offering contactless, Covid-secure charging for example our Pilot Group EV chargers.
By investing in EV charging now, health clubs are increasing their chances of recovery in a post-pandemic world by ensuring they have all the amenities needed to attract the wellness customers of the future, and there is no better time to invest whilst the government’s OZEV grant is still available. Identifying new locations for installing charging points is a key part of our role here at Pilot Group EV, offering specialist knowledge to provide the most suitable solution for you.