Some of the best business ideas come from tapping into your own expertise. Dan Uyemura’s career in tech, and his experience as a gym owner, inspired him to create PushPress. Here's Dan's story.
Not every SaaS business idea originates from the confines of a tidy conference room. PushPress, a comprehensive digital platform for fitness studios, was born from the clink and clank of weights in an actual gym.
Dan Uyemura, CEO of PushPress, is no stranger to startups, having spent his career as a programmer. When he became a gym owner, his technical background led him to a very important realization: gym software was outdated. It felt frozen in time from 1998, and the software that he and other gym owners were stuck with was about as useful as an AOL installation CD.
Dan knew that gym software was due for an update, and he took it upon himself to make this happen. He founded PushPress with the mission to give gyms a comprehensive software platform that would bring them into the modern age.
“We decided to use what we understood in the gym space, coupled with what we understood in the software space, and built a management platform specifically for gyms.”
PushPress sets gyms up for success with websites made in Webflow
“Our value proposition is to allow gym owners to focus on training their clients and let us take care of the rest.”
Since he was an independent business owner of his own, Dan started PushPress to help out smaller gyms and exercise studios rather than cater to big chains. This is a demographic often stretched thin, both from a budgetary standpoint and from the responsibilities of running a brick-and-mortar business.
With PushPress, gym owners get a portal for seeing their revenue, tracking memberships, and taking care of billing, as well as other important facets of operating their business. Along with software that they can use to manage and run their business, PushPress also provides them with a professional-quality website.
Small business owners already have multiple responsibilities and often take it upon themselves to cobble together a website and create content for it. When you’re trying to take care of everything that goes into running a business, building and maintaining a website on your own can have less than great results.
PushPress uses Webflow to build these websites for their clients. Crafted with the expertise that comes from years in both the fitness industry and web design, they provide their clients with web designs that would be impossible for your average gym owner to pull off on their own.
“There’s the gym owner who thinks that their website doesn’t really matter because they’re good trainers. They build it themselves, with Squarespace or whatever, and those are easy to spot because they’re usually the worst ones.”
PushPress creates websites that are visually appealing and on brand for a given gym, and they provide features to help their customers. A gym’s members can do things like check class schedules, book visits, and buy products through the websites that PushPress builds for their clients.
PushPress begins with an intake form
Anyone that deals with web design can take a cue from PushPress and give their clients intake forms at the top of the design process. These are used to gather all of the important details, like the target audience and what the goals of the website are, and to get background information about the gym and a sense of their brand identity.
The PushPress customer intake form is focused on figuring out a gym’s value propositions: the type of programs they offer and the calls to action they want to include. Before they even open up Webflow, PushPress has everything they need to craft a design customized for a given fitness business.
Having a client fill out an intake form is a great starting point for getting all of the basic information at once rather than having to spend time on the phone or send out multiple emails.
Migration from WordPress
PushPress started building websites for their gym clients using WordPress — but rebuilt them using Webflow. They’ve been using Webflow exclusively since migrating these older clients over.
“WordPress was dreadfully slow. We’ve made it a marketing point that we offer the fastest websites for gyms.”
Webflow not only gives PushPress’ customers speedy websites, but it also provides a higher level of quality and interactivity that’s absent in low-level website builders. Having better looking and functioning websites gives gyms a stronger digital presence.
Webflow has also made PushPress’ own design process more efficient.
“To do the back-end edits we had to do things like use a really old version of WordPress and then go and check the front end. Hitting the save button would take 30 seconds, hitting the front-end reload would take another 30 seconds. Everything took forever to do. With Webflow, everything is super fast.”
PushPress utilizes Webflow for designing their client’s websites, and they also use it for their own page. They make extensive use of Webflow’s CMS to update and maintain their blog, and they have plans to use the CMS and its collections to integrate their podcast episodes, as well as to put together a gym startup guide.
Related reads: 5 reasons a WordPress user moved to Webflow
SaaS companies can help independent businesses
PushPress demonstrates how SaaS companies can cater to small businesses, helping their own companies and their clients to increase revenue. They used their background in the fitness world and expertise in tech and web design to create a niche of their own. Finding an area of specialization is important for any company that deals in web design.
Small businesses like gyms don’t have the resources or money to have in-house web designers and digital marketing teams or to hire someone to build them custom software. They’re a demographic that needs help, and SaaS companies have opportunities to come in and provide them with the products they need to stay competitive in their markets.
For SaaS businesses like PushPress, agencies, and others who want to offer their clients websites, Webflow offers a design platform that will leave both these companies and their customers happy with the results.