What is a membership database?
A membership database is the core of any association, nonprofit, club, or other organization. They help you store all relevant member information in a single place. Membership organizations with small resources often struggle to maintain data of members, volunteers, and supporters.
However, you can easily maintain such data on Microsoft Excel. Creating and tracking a membership database in Excel is easy when the member data is small and manageable.
Why is membership database maintenance important?
You have to ensure that your membership database information is correct and updated for several reasons. A membership database can help:
- Determine benefits provided to each member,
- Calculate the revenue that can be generated through events and other similar sources,
- Create a proper communication channel between members,
- Track and analyze membership renewal details,
- Easily follow up with event benefits for members.
Creating a membership database in an Excel spreadsheet in 3 easy steps
1- Determine what you have to track.
The first step in creating your Excel membership database, of course, is to determine what kind of information you’ll be tracking.
If you’re a beginner with Excel, use a basic spreadsheet with minimal columns. Just add three to four columns with names, contact information, and the activity status of the member. You can add additional columns when you feel more comfortable with the software, and want to store more member data.
What can you add to your Excel membership database?
To ease your tracking process, you can many add custom fields to your spreadsheet. This will help you create a comprehensive and extensive database for your membership organization.
- Date of joining,
- Member name,
- Member status,
- A photo of the member,
- Member ID/membership number,
- Member address,
- Phone numbers and emails,
- Grouping fields,
- Relevant skills,
- Family notes,
- Member occupation,
- Emergency contacts,
- Payment due dates, etc.
2- Use a pivot table to create an interesting visual representation of your membership data.
By creating a pivot table, you can easily filter target data even if there is plenty of data in the sheet. You can track payment status, payment method, attended events and meetings, renewal due date, membership level, and other needed information.
3- Provide access to the membership database to important members of your organization.
To help the database process run smoothly, you can provide access to your members, as well as board members, to add their own information.
If you choose to do this, ensure that all your members know how to save the document after updating with their information. Store the document with a common access path, in a place that’s visible to all members and managers with access. A common online storing platform like Dropbox or Google Drive, if you’re not using one already, can be extremely helpful for organization.
Also, make sure that you are always accessing the latest version of your membership database. Version control is important so that you always have access to the latest data.
Try a free membership management software such as Raklet for your membership organization.
After a while, especially if you’re a big organization, manually entering all membership information onto a spreadsheet will cost you a lot of time and effort. If you find building a membership database in Excel is a difficult task, why don’t you try out an easy to use an all-in-one membership management software like Raklet? We can automatically store membership information, create personalized membership profiles that are filterable through tags, increase engagement with email and SMS, help you collect one-time or annual membership fees directly from your platform, and more. With a lot of excellent features, you can save time and energy with our software.
Get started with a completely free Raklet account — no hidden charges.
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[This article was updated on August 30th 2021 for freshness and relevancy.]