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How To Create A Website For Your Club…

A website can be one of an organization’s most useful resources. It can be your online hub for sharing announcements or upcoming events, a way to keep your community engaged, and an opportunity to attract new members; that is, if the website looks great and provides the content that your community expects and needs.

Chances are that web design or development aren’t your areas of expertise — and that’s ok! There has never been a better time to easily build a club website, even if you have no idea where to start. With so many site builders out there, the challenge is not having the technical abilities to make a site but rather choosing which tools you should use.

Here’s how to get started with your club website and some great tools that will help get you on your way.

The internet moves at lightning speed, and you never know when your club’s domain name will be registered by someone else. To ensure your club gets the best domain possible, check to see if yours is available and, if it is, then secure it right away.

You have a few options when it comes to picking a domain. Start by searching for your club’s name and see if it’s available. You may have your heart set on a .COM domain, but there are hundreds of new top-level domains that may even be better suited for your club’s website.

Whether you want to build a unique site from scratch or just want a nice-looking template to customize with your information, there are no shortage of tools out there that will help you make a great website. If you’re reading this article, then chances are you’re searching for one of the easier solutions that you can build and manage yourself.

It can be overwhelming trying to narrow down the hundreds of solutions out there. A good place to start is by focusing on solutions that have been designed with your use case in mind.

General Site Builders

The following site builders are great general purpose website builders that will look beautiful for your members and will also be a breeze to set up.

Squarespace Screenshot

Squarespace

Notable features: Responsive design, templates, blogging, eCommerce, SEO, analytics, 24/7 customer service.

Pricing: $5/month-$70/month


Weebly Screenshot

Weebly

Notable features: Responsive design, eCommerce, mobile apps (for site management), templates, SEO, blogging, third party apps, analytics.

Pricing: Free-$25/month


Jimdo Screenshot

Jimdo

Notable features: Templates, mobile apps (for site management), eCommerce, blogging, SEO.

Pricing: Free, $7.50/month & $20/month


Niche Site Builders

In addition to the more general-purpose site creators, many website builders focus on specific use cases. These are a great option for ensuring that your site will include all of the more advanced functionality you may be looking for.

Sports Teams

For stats, schedules, registrations, highlights, and announcements.
Sport Ngin Screenshot

Sport Ngin

Notable features: Responsive design, inline editing, widgets, permissions, online registration, team management, tournaments, leagues, background verification.

Price: Contact Sport Ngin for quote


 

Sports Illustrated Play Screenshot

Sports Illustrated Play

Notable features: Online registration, scheduling, communication, statistics, teams & rosters, online store.

Price: Plans start at $49/year (contact SI Play for more information)


 

Subscription Services

For taking and managing your members’ orders.

Subbly Screenshot

Subbly

Notable features: Responsive design (for visitors and site management), themes, order management, automated email notifications, customer login, analytics.

Pricing: $24/month-$199/month


 

Cratejoy Screenshot

Cratejoy

Notable features: Responsive design, subscriber accounts, customizable subscriptions, one-time sales, checkout, customer management, store management, referral programs, coupons & discounts, analytics.

Pricing: $39/month plus 1.25% & $0.10 per transaction


 

Community Engagement

For communicating to and amongst members.

SocialGO

SocialGO

Notable features: Online registration, blogging, announcements, anti-spam verification, themes, forums, events, groups.

Pricing: $9.99/month, $29.99/month, $79.99/month


Hoop.la Screenshot

Hoop.la

Notable features: Responsive design, custom branding & configuration, blogging, community uploaded media, forums, calendar, surveys, chat rooms, events, QuestionShark (customer support module), widgets, private messages, activity & content streams, analytics..

Pricing: $375/month-$4,750/month


Fan Club

For showcasing your great work to your biggest supporters.

Format Screenshot

Format

Notable features: Responsive design, themes, flexible layouts, fully customizable, client proofing, publish from Adobe Lightroom, blogging, 24/7 support.

Pricing: $6/month-$44/month


Virb Screenshot

Virb

Notable features: Mobile styling, themes, CSS & HTML, SEO, unlimited space, blogging, events, galleries, integrations with third-party services.

Pricing: $10/month


After all the hard work you put into creating your website, you owe it to yourself — and your club — to keep at it and make it a success. Think about it: Why would a visitor spend any time on a website whose owner doesn’t think it’s worth the time to post news, media and other updates?

A website designed to engage an audience needs to be…engaging! Make your site a regular part of your routine and you’ll have the best chance possible of making it a hit. Even if it’s just 10 minutes a day, any new content will let people know that your website is important and that as loyal club members they need to keep coming back again and again.

Know of any other types of online clubs or great site builders not mentioned in this post? Let us know in the comments!


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