I’ve been a personal trainer in London for over 10 years now, and a couple of years ago decided it was time to diversify into online fitness services. So I came up with the name Fitness4London, trade-marked it, and hired a web company to create a decent website. This was after a year of trying to design the website myself, using the outdated and tortuously frustrating software Microsoft Frontpage.
The element of the site that I didn’t have a hope in hell of creating myself is the Fitness Buddy social network. Thanks to my web designers Boson Media, I have a bespoke social media website (designed from scratch) with a great search facility, and now over 700 Fitness Buddy members, all messaging each other and meeting up for tennis, squash, gym, and a dozen more activities.
If you’re not already a Fitness Buddy member, feel free to join. It’s totally free to register and use, and always will be. The Fitness Buddy pages are the most visited pages of the Fitness4London website, closely followed by the tennis page, with its growing directory of tennis courts, tennis clubs, and tennis coaches in London.
How do I make money from the Fitness4London website, if Fitness Buddy is free? Well, if you explore the site, you’ll see banner ads on each page, and these generate revenue whenever people click through and buy from the advertisers. So far I have a small range of great names advertising their fitness products, including John Lewis, Maximuscle, MyProtein, Simply Swim, MySupermarket, PhysioSupplies, and Sweatband. This gives me around 5-10% commission on every sale through my site, so get buying!
More recently I’ve added an online nutrition coaching service, where you get 2 weeks online coaching for just £25, which is proving increasingly popular as people realise what they’re getting for their money, and spread the word to their friends.
Fitness, Sports, & Health Directories
There’s also a growing directory of sports and fitness venues in London (with dedicated pages for tennis, squash, gyms etc), as well as a directory of health therapists in London, and the top three listings on each page are paid listings for just £40 a year. The paid listing allows the advertiser 70 words plus a link to their site. All the other listings are free, with space for 30 words but no website link. There are around 500 listings on these pages so far.
If you’re into health documentaries on TV, you should check out my Reviews page, where I review programmes like Food Hospital, Dispatches, The Men Who Made Us Fat, and Big Body Squad.
And for interviews with Londoners who have made a name for themselves in the world of fitness & sports, check out my Interviews page. See interviews with Tom Williams, UK Manager of Parkrun; Carlos Moreno of Moreno Boxing; and Phil Vivian, Head Tennis Coach at Aldersbrook Tennis Club and one of London’s most experienced tennis coaches.
Pages for Every Goal
Want to lose weight? There’s a dedicated page for this, with links to pages with recipes, exercises, and Weight Loss Buddy.
Want to build muscle? There’s a page for this too, with links to pages with detailed tips on training each and every muscle group in the body.
Want to sleep better, beat stress, harness the power of your mind to achieve your goals? There are pages for each of these too.
The Future of Fitness4London
My aim is to get the Fitness Buddy network up to 5,000 members in the next couple of years, so that when you search for a tennis buddy in North London, or a gym buddy in West London, you’ll have plenty of profile results to look through. I want Fitness Buddy to become the Facebook of Fitness in London.
And the directories pages will grow to become the largest online resource for all things fitness & sports & health in London.
Once word spreads about the value you get from the Fitness4London Online Nutrition Coaching, this service will become well known and respected among Londoners. I want it to gain a reputation for being great value for money, and an effective kick-start towards healthier eating habits that suit your lifestyle and goals.
In a couple of years time, I expect visitor traffic to exceed 20,000 visitors a month, rather than the current 1,000 a month.
Your Feedback and Suggestions
Fitness4London has grown largely thanks to you, the visitor to this website. You’ve helped me develop Fitness Buddy (there have been two upgrades thanks to your suggestions), you’ve suggested new sports and fitness activities to add to the directories, and all you sports clubs, coaches, gyms, fitness studios, and health therapists out there have enriched the site with your listings.
Please keep your feedback, suggestions, and site content coming!