The Association Blog: News and Resources for Association Executives

10 Best Website Design Practices for Associations

Posted by Carrie Kolar on Oct 8, 2015 6:30:00 AM

Your website is the face of your association, and in addition to keeping its content up to date, you want to keep your website design modern by incorporating new technologies that make your site more user-friendly and technologically relevant. However, due to the constant innovations in website design and technology, it can be difficult for associations to keep up. To help you identify the features and trends you can use in your website, we’ve gathered the 10 best website design practices for associations.

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Topics: web design for small businesses, membership website best practices, nonprofit website design, website design for non profits, Website Value

Six Ideas to Enhance Ways Your Members Use Your Membership Site

Posted by Carrie Kolar on Aug 25, 2015 7:00:00 AM

Websites are the public face of an organization, and should at the very least give visitors the information they need to learn about the organization and join. Websites for membership organizations, however, should go a step further and act as a meeting place for members, where they can find each other, interact, and learn about the extent and reach of the organization. There are a number of ways to ensure that your website performs this function, from enabling mobile visitors to adding member directories, location services, and more. Here, we offer six ideas to enhance ways your members use your membership site.

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Topics: membership websites, membership website best practices, wild apricot website development, nonprofit website design, member friendly website, Website Value

Best Options for Turning Wordpress into a Membership Site

Posted by Carrie Kolar on Aug 4, 2015 6:00:00 AM

Choosing your website platform can be difficult, particularly for membership-based organizations. The platform must have the functionality you need and fit the requirements of your organization without breaking the bank or becoming unwieldy. Some membership-based organizations create their websites on a platform such as Wordpress before realizing that they need membership-based functionality that the main Wordpress platform does not provide. In this case, the organization has two strong options: (1) expanding the functionality of the Wordpress website by adding plugins, or (2) moving the existing website to a membership-based software. 

Here, we examine these best options for transforming your existing Wordpress website into a member-friendly website.

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Topics: membership websites, membership website best practices, member friendly website, Website Value

3 Ways to Use Your Website to Inform Members

Posted by Carrie Kolar on Jul 28, 2015 6:30:00 AM

Your website performs many key activities for your organization: it interfaces with them, engages them, and informs them. Each activity is essential, and no website is quite complete without all three components. Of the three, the least often discussed is how your website needs to inform your members. Not only do your members need to find contact information, addresses, and other such essentials, providing your members with a place for relevant, recent information that will interest them is one of the best ways to add value to your website and make it a resource. Here, we tell you three ways to use your website to inform members.

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Topics: member engagement, member communication, membership websites, membership website best practices, member friendly website

5 Key Ingredients of a Friendly Membership Website

Posted by Carrie Kolar on Jun 30, 2015 6:30:00 AM

There are a lot of mediums that your members can use to interact with your organization. They can email, call, talk face-to-face, interact on social media...the list goes on. However, no matter how many ways your members can reach out to your organization, the fact remains that your website is your primary interface with your members. Because of this, it pays to make sure that your member’s interaction with your website is as seamless and hassle-free as possible. This will go a long way towards keeping your members happy with your organization and their experience. Here, we give you the five key ingredients of a friendly membership website. 

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Topics: membership websites, membership website best practices, member experience, member friendly website, Website Value

5 Proven Ideas for Providing Member Value Through Your Website

Posted by Carrie Kolar on Feb 24, 2015 12:00:00 PM

Providing member value is at the heart of any successful association. When considering your membership benefits, don't overlook your website as a membership relationship channel to providing value. The IMC Club, an international membership organization for instrument-rated pilots, provides an excellent case study for how membership website can provide measurable value to members. In this article we highlight five of the many features the IMC Club website provide members.  

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Topics: membership websites, membership website best practices

Membership Site Ideas: How to Create a Resource Center

Posted by Allison Reilly on Jun 12, 2014 8:00:00 PM

A resource center and a member-based organization go together like peanut butter and jelly. You can enjoy each of them separately, but the experience is so much better when the two are together. A resource center is a section of your association's website that previews all of your site's or association's content. No, it's not the same thing as a member portal, and your resource center shouldn't be restricted to members only. Having a resource center that's open to everyone will help your association educate potential members, rank highly in search engine results and generate interest in your organization and membership opportunities. Here's how to create a resource center for your association.

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Topics: member value, marketing for associations, member communication, membership websites, membership marketing, membership website best practices, association marketing

Heartbleed Website Design for Associations

Posted by Allison Reilly on Apr 15, 2014 8:00:00 AM

Heartbleed: What It Is and What You Need to Do About It - TechSoup - Heartbleed, if you haven't yet heard, is a massive tech bug that compromised the security of dozens of popular websites. It's essentially a loophole that could have been exploited to gain access to user information. If you're wondering if you need to change any passwords to any of your association's social media counts, then check out this Mashable article showing which sites need to have a password change. These changes need to be made immediately, even though many sites have already patch the problem, because Heartbleed existed for several years before being noticed.

Spring Cleaning Time on Your Website - Wild Apricot Blog - This article offers a great to-do list on how to make sure every part of your website is up-to-date and working properly. These little details can hurt your search engine rankings and user experience, while also being incredibly easy to miss when you make a change, or add something new, or even take something down that's old. The only caveat we would add is to be careful and deliberate with website design changes, such as font and color. These changes may seem small, but website design should only be changed for a good reason. Wanting a fresher look is not a good enough reason, as that's an excuse that can be used every six months, which is too often in changing your design.

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Topics: association debrief, member recruitment, recruiting young members, membership website best practices, website design for non profits

Content Ideas for Member-Only Pages

Posted by Lamees Abourahma on Mar 20, 2014 7:33:00 AM

Membership websites are typically a resource of information for the general public and a communication platform for members. A membership website is where you find upcoming events, membership information, and organization news among other information. In addition, the website is likely to host content exclusive to members on restricted website pages called, members-only pages. The content shared in the members-only pages is specific to the organization, but here is a list of a few ideas from real-life organizations. 

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Topics: membership and marketing solution, member engagement, member communication, membership websites, membership management, member retention, membership website best practices

Association Success Secrets from Greg Laney

Posted by Lamees Abourahma on Jan 16, 2014 4:29:00 PM

In this edition of the Association Press, Lamees chats with Greg Laney, 2013 President of Atlanta Area Compensation Association on his association's growth and effectiveness strategy. Read the interview below or listen to our 24-minute conversation.

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Topics: membership and marketing solution, member communication, membership solutions, membership websites, membership management, bright association press, membership marketing, association leadership, membership website best practices, association marketing, association management