Advantages of using wild Apricot
Let’s face it… we are creatures of habit, which is defined as one who is prone to routine, and so if we think about it what makes us angry most of the time is when that routine or expected result from an action does not yield the outcome we are used to. This makes us anxious, angry, and irritable, however when we add the notion of work responsibilities, we are exponentially irritated with things that do not perform well or as expected more so when our jobs, professional reputation, and / or leadership are tarnished by said outcomes. Enter Wild Apricot! The #1 Membership Management Software in the World according to Capterra and Get APP.
What Wild Apricot Does Well
There are a few key things that the Wild Apricot platform does extremely well – especially for the price. First, let me tout about the fact that there are some 32,000+ organizations using Wild Apricot as of October 2022, and that my friends is no small feat. Let me put it in perspective for you – there are approximately 25,000 national and regional associations in the US according to InfoPlease.Com If this number is correct, you can see how Wild Apricot’s 32,000 world wide user count is pretty impressive, but what does the platform do well that keeps 32K users coming back?
Wild Apricot Pricing
Wild Apricot, thanks in part to Personify its parent company has kept pricing relatively reachable for small and mid-size organization. Pricing is based of course on the number of contact records and not admin seats or bandwidth etc… Some may argue that assessing a 20% fee to the price if the organization processes payments via any other processor than Afinipay is somehow nickel and dimming its users, but I say kudos to Wild Apricot for passing some cost on to the users [only because I come from a payment processing background and understand the costs, risks, and resources needed to process payments]. You can always run a free account with limited tools. Or, take the risky road of building out an open source solution. For the price, Wild Apricot is hands down a bargain in this hard to find a bargain world.
Cloud Based Hosting
A while back Wild Apricot moved to AWS What does this mean for those 32,000+ organizations using Wild Apricot? Well, it means that the cost of building and maintaining a hosting environment has beed reduced massively by placing the hosting of the website platform and its subsequent customer base on to the world’s leading web services platform. Think of it this way – I am passing the cost of owning my computer for the cost of leasing one. When is it outdated I simply trade it in. If it is damaged, I have coverage to get a replacement. All the security and peripherals are included. AWS says it best “Whether you’re looking for compute power, database storage, content delivery, or other functionality, AWS has the services to help you build sophisticated applications with increased flexibility, scalability and reliability” [Source]
Toolset – Toolset – Toolset
A toolset or by toolset I mean the set of particular utilities inherent in the platform, which are things like membership management, db import via formatted excel file, events creation and management, member forums, internal member to member communication mechanism. See Wild Apricot Help KB for full articles of all these and other tools found in the platform admin pages. Listen, I have looked at at least 5 membership management platforms and they offer nowhere near the number of features of Wild Apricot. Example: I asked for pricing on a popular platform, and I was told to make an appointment to be given a quote. Ok, got on a call and learned that to onboard there would be a $20,000 cost. There were no custom themes that could be developed or imported, and only 3 themes which to choose from in 3 colors. Awesome. $20,000 for the most limiting set of website aesthetics I have ever heard of. Wild Apricot not only allows for completely custom themes but has a nice list of partners that can make your Wild Apricot website pop!
The Few Weak Spots
They say nothing is 100% good or perfect right? Well, Wild Apricot is no exception. It is the best choice when it comes to price, allowed resources for the price, and a long list of tools that allow you to achieve greatness. There are some needs improvements however, and let me outline a few here:
– Communicating downtime, bugs, issues effecting the platform; the wild apricot team can do better with this.
– Adding much overdue features; there is a wild apricot wish list and on it the top 3 items 2 have been completed, but the 3rd is just as important [the creation of custom forms], followed by the 4th [the] ability to donate during member registration process, and #5 is allow membership join/registration from event registration. Would be nice to see these in the next 12 months.
– As a wild apricot partner, the #1 thing I would like to see is the ability to import an entire look and feel from a development account to a live wild apricot account.
I am sure all users have their share of “things” we would like to see made better, but the truth is the Wild Apricot team has been pretty proactive to add some of the top requested features.
I for one am sold on the Wild Apricot platform’s ability to deliver a solid performance and features to its 32,000+ users. If you can find a better option, please let me know. In the meantime, if you are in the market for some Wild Apricot love, please do not hesitate to contact us and take advantage of our Free Wild Apricot consultation.