Association Web Design

Association websites are gathering places for professionals to share and promote themselves. At Orbit, we bring all your members together.

Association websites have to serve multiple members with different access points and different goals for using the site. They list events and conferences, promote their members, promote their industry, and are a place for experts to share information and publish work.

Creating a site that serves all these functions can be a challenge. Look at a few examples to see which features these websites share, and how Orbit solves the problems of association websites. 

Connect your members with each other and the world

For good reason, association websites often include a member directory that helps connect website visitors to people within the association.

We create this directory by combining experience with customization.

Let your members update their own information

Member databases are the central place where an association can manage all member information. In an ideal world, some of this system data is available publicly on the association’s site—and it gets there automatically.

The one-way stream of communication saves the time and energy of manually moving information from the association’s database to the website database.

Or take it a step further: If a member’s contact information changes, allow her to log in and make updates herself (rather than contacting the association). When members manage their own profiles, it creates two-way communication between the databases, saving the association time.

 

Your association website should facilitate communication, not control it.

The Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC) sets the standards for rehabilitation counselors. In addition to keeping standards high, they maintain a database of thousands of certified counselors.

This group needed a website that would connect visitors to counselors with various specialties and language skills. For example: Need a mental health expert who speaks Bengali?

We created the tools to open that two-way communication because it’s great when databases get along. The website grabs updated member information from the database; the database grabs member information that was updated on the website.

Turn your website into an association management tool.

If your website needs to be a database itself, it takes is little more planning and a little more programming. But thoughtful strategy and a strong development team enhance the possibilities.

Here’s a list of features (beyond member directories) that we’ve built into association websites:

  • Event calendars: Visitors and members can keep track of meetings, conferences, trade shows, and renewal deadlines.
  • Event registration: If the event requires people to sign up, let them do it with with a simple form. You can also invite registrants to pay any fees online.
  • Online collection of membership dues: Give people another way to pay their dues.
  • Member profiles: Members can update their own profiles. Or, a designated member can update the organization’s profile and manage all other users in the group.
  • Online voting for board of director elections
  • Articles: Provide a searchable database of industry-specific articles.
  • Job postings and resume submission
  • Reports: Association administrators can easily find data and download reports. Common uses include:
    • E-mail lists
    • Mail merges
    • Event name tags
    • Membership book directories

Partner with Us

Since 2001, the Orbit web design and development team has been creating custom sites and managing tricky integrations. We’re content management experts who follow best practices and work closely with web strategists and project managers to create your perfect site.

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