Building an indoor playscape is an exciting venture. As you begin looking at innovative equipment designs, you’re likely also starting to strategize for your business. There are lots of ways to make an indoor play area profitable. For an existing business, adding an indoor playground can attract new customers. As a family entertainment center, you can provide some much-needed recreation and fun to local communities.
INDOOR PLAYGROUND BUSINESS PROFIT AND RETURN
The profit margins and returns of an indoor playground vary by location, business model and overhead costs. Some businesses use a family entertainment center as their primary source of revenue. For other companies, such as malls and retail outlets, an indoor playground is an attraction that brings families in the door. In these cases, the playground brings more traffic and revenue to the business.
Overhead costs are also an important factor in indoor playground profits and success. If you plan on renting a space, the lease you sign will have a big impact on profit. A large building will cost more to rent, and the increased space allows you to build more attractions and house more families at once. With increased space, you can also rent out rooms for birthday parties or fitness classes.
Commercial rent costs more in areas with higher visibility. Families usually find indoor playgrounds via word of mouth and internet research. Since visitors usually plan ahead of time, visibility isn’t as important. So, you can take advantage of lower rent costs at a more remote location.
As you begin planning your indoor playground, research your local market to help determine business costs in your area.
WAYS TO MAKE YOUR PLAY AREA MORE PROFITABLE
When it comes to new businesses, hard work and creativity are an unbeatable combination. The indoor playground business is a unique industry, with many opportunities to increase profit margins. Here are some ways to make your business a success:
1. FIND WAYS TO LOWER “DEAD TIME”
For a family entertainment center, your hours might be closely tied to school schedules. Weekends and breaks are your most profitable times of the year. But as a business owner, you’re paying rent and other overhead costs year-round. So, finding ways to open your facility and get people in the door during off-peak times can make your business more profitable. Here are a few ideas you can try:
Offer fun adult activities, such as morning or evening fitness classes.
Open your doors to local businesses with custom team-building events on weekdays.
Run one-day camps during local school professional development days — working parents will appreciate the child care.
Create opportunities for school field trips.
Offer after-school groups, such as a dodgeball league.
Run a daycare service or partner.
Build some toddler-level activities and market to families with non-school-aged children.
Work with local homeschooling groups to offer gym classes or enrichment activities.
2. INVEST IN INTERNET MARKETING
Most parents will choose what to do with their weekends via online research. Your website and online advertising is the main way these families find your facilities.
It’s best to build a social media presence and encourage families to engage with their social groups by posting photos with creative hashtags. Eye-catching, colorful equipment makes for great Instagram and Facebook photos. When a parent posts a picture of kids enjoying your playground, their network will see the benefit of visiting your business. Word-of-mouth via social media is a powerful tool.
3. DESIGN YOUR SPACE WITH FUN IN MIND
Profitability requires more than foot traffic. It’s best to build customer loyalty and increase the length of time guests spend at your business. New, innovative equipment will entertain children for longer. Custom-built facilities and new additions make for a one-of-a-kind attraction.
Creating a space that beckons people back also requires great bathrooms, retail space and check-in areas. They should have a smart traffic flow and look attractive to both kids and adults. It’s best to work with a designer that has experience in the entertainment industry.
4. OFFER BIRTHDAY PACKAGES
Whether you close the space for birthdays or give party-goers a private room, a great birthday event can be the lifeblood of your business. A package full of creative activities can entice a family to spend a bit more. Offer a few different packages for increased variety and some deluxe options for higher revenue.
Creating a high-quality experience for children’s birthday parties also introduces new families to your business. If kids have a good time, they might come back or want to have their parties at the same place.
5. SELL FOOD AND BEVERAGES
Selling food at your business can increase your indoor playground profits considerably. While you’ll have to invest more money and get some additional licenses to sell food on your property, food can be a great addition to your business. Guests will stay longer when they’re able to refuel and rehydrate, and you’ll gain another source of revenue for your business.
6. REMEMBER THE PARENTS
Families are more likely to stay longer when there’s something for everyone. While most of your facility will cater to active kids and their wild imaginations, it’s parents who take them there in the first place. Parents will appreciate the break from their routines provided by your playground. They’ll also want something to do while they’re relaxing. A coffee bar or an internet cafe can keep parents occupied while their kids play.