Auto-renewing membership

I’m often asked by my clients about using credit card auto-renewal for membership dues (or donations or other recurring charges). Auto-renewal has been around for a long time, but it’s taken a while for associations to start adopting it, in part due to the technology catching up with the need (i.e., AMS vendors have only in the past few years begun offering this as a baseline function).

There’s a very good article in the November/December 2013 issue of Associations Now from ASAE that talks about the experiences of one association with auto-renewals. The article goes on to mention that some 25 percent of associations offer automatic billing for renewal payments (higher than I would have thought). That’s up from just six percent in 2005.

Auto-renewal does come with its downsides, as the article highlights, but like most other things, consumer demand is driving this need, so associations need to be prepared to offer it.

About Wes Trochlil

For over 30 years, Wes has worked in and with dozens of associations and membership organizations throughout the US, ranging in size from zero staff (all-volunteer) to over 700. In that time Wes has provided a range of consulting services, from general consulting on data management issues to full-scale, association-wide selection and implementation of association management systems.

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