The membership Management Module is available in 3 out of 4 FundRaiser Software levels, excepting only the entry-level FundRaiser Basic. Which of the others (Spark, Select, or Professional) you choose amy depend on a combination of price and features available. As the official "Tour Guide" for our online tours of the software, I always recommend starting at the least expensive level that has the features you absolutely must have, and working up from there in the future. Sasha's recent blog does a great job painting the general picture of what the Membership Module can help you do, but in this installment, I'll explain the three versions that can manage memberships, starting with the least expensive and ending with the most versatile. For a quick view, you can visit the comparison chart found here.
FundRaiser Spark is designed with the Membership Module built in as a standard, but selectable, option. It differs from its older siblings in several ways, but is basically a streamlined, straightforward version of them. The Membership Module allows for the same level of management, including automating correspondence for renewals, reminders, etc., and with the same reporting capabilities. What you won't see are things like Households, Alternate Addresses, major donor Solicitors, user-defined preference settings, tickle reminders, user-defined reports, or file merge capabilities. Most small member-based organizations won't need these, and with fewer fields and choices, the software is less likely to intimidate anyone new to donor management databases. With fewer options, technical support is needed less frequently, and the costs are kept low.
FundRaiser Select is designed as a basic package to which can be added various modules (at additional, one-time, costs), including the Memberships Module. With Select you'll have not only those things I mentioned as being absent in Spark, but also the ability to "grow" into other modules you may need in the future, including Pledge tracking, Volunteer management, Tribute gift tracking and acknowledgement, and much more. These are available as add-on modules, and can be added on at any time, whenever the need arises. This flexibility of features also gives you flexibility in pricing, as you can choose what you need when you can afford it, and then use the software to help raise funds to move to the next level.
FundRaiser Professional has all modules built in from the beginning, just waiting for you to activate them when you need them. It gives you extras that are not available in other versions, too, such as Relationships tracking, unlimited spare (user-defined) data fields, more gift codes, more user-defined preferences, Campaign Management, Rapid Gift Entry, Soft Credits, Split Transactions, and, as they say, "much, much more". Professional is a good choice if you need any "Pro-only" features, or if you know that you'll need multiple modules in the near future.
With many software companies charging ridiculous prices for training, upgrades, and support, FundRaiser has always felt it unfair to make you pay full price when moving from one level of software to the next. So we don't. Whatever you have paid toward the purchase of your current version of FundRaiser will be applied to the price of the more expensive version you want. That way, you are not penalized for having tried the least expensive, or less expensive, choice if it doesn't work out for you, or if you grow out of it. And there are "hosted" versions that allow you to pay monthly fees, rather than outright purchase of the software. And interest-free payment options for purchase. We are a for-profict company serving non-profit organizations, and we believe in doing the right thing, just as our non-profits do, to make the world a bit better place for all of us. Please, tell your frends to sign up for a guided tour of the software, if you agree that we have something useful and fair to offer them.