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Why Your Club Needs An Online Store

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“Money, money, money, Always sunny, In the rich man's world”, - ABBA

“Cash rules everything around me, C.R.E.A.M. get the money”, - Wu-Tang Clan

Money really is a ruling force in our modern world; it would honestly be quicker to list the songs that aren't about money. It seems unlikely that Beethoven's Ninth was about chasing dollars, but honestly, at this point, I'm not going to rule it out. 

Today, we will discuss one particularly underutilised way for you to bring in more of those all-important dollar bills to your club, and that is setting up an online store for your club. 

Setting up an online store is a great way to raise extra money for your club, spread the word about your club, and help you get your club its own Scrooge McDuck-style money bin. 
 

Scrooge McDuck-style money bin

 

Okay, maybe that last one is a little far-fetched, plus I bet diving head-first into a pool of coins would actually be quite bad for your health. The realism of Looney Tunes aside, let's dive into how you can use an online store to help pad out the ever-thin club budget. 

Member Jungle Makes Selling Your Club’s E-Commerce Easy

Running a club or association can be challenging, especially when it comes to managing the budget. To overcome this challenge, having an online store can be incredibly useful as it provides a platform to sell products to members and the public, generating additional revenue. By streamlining the selling process and making it available online, clubs can easily sell their products at events and 24/7 from their website. This not only makes selling products easier but also helps clubs promote their brand and generate additional funding.

If you are a Member Jungle customer, you can set up your club’s online store quickly and easily. You can do all of the following with your club’s online store through Member Jungle: 

  • Add & Customise New Products 
  • Give Discount Codes To Members
  • Discount Bundles
  • Set Custom Shipping Prices (a sticker will cost less to ship than a jacket, and your shipping should be able to reflect that) 
  • Automatically Track Remaining Stock
  • Sell Via The Website & App
  • Accept Digital Payment Methods At In-Person Events 
  • Export Data Into Xero
  • Create one-off invoices

One of the main advantages of Member Jungle’s online product store is that it simplifies the process of selling club products by streamlining bookkeeping, stock-taking, and inventory management and allowing digital payments in person. 

This all means that it takes less time and effort to run a club store and that it is more likely to be something that you or one of the other club administrators will have time to take on. 

What Can Your Club Sell Through Its Online Store?

People often think that the only thing you can sell through a club store is stereotypical branded merchandise, like hats and shirts with the club logo on them. Don’t get me wrong; selling club-branded shirts, stickers, and hoodies is a fantastic idea, but they are far from the only things you should be selling via your club store. 

So, let's examine some really clever ways to use your product store, with examples from Member Junge Customers.

Sell Courses & Extras Via Your Club’s Online Store

A great way to use your online store is to sell extras and add-ons for things your club is already offering. Okay, let me explain that a little better. 

Some clubs may sell regular event tickets through their event management system but simultaneously offer tie-in items through their online store. For example, Lotus Club Victoria is offering a hotel booking option in its store that ties into one of its events. This means that its members can simply pay the club, and they will take care of all the hotel arrangements on their behalf. 

This is what we are talking about, selling optional extras via your product catalogue. 

 

Sell Courses & Extras Via Your Club’s Online Store

 

With the ability to create fully customisable products, edit all the relevant information, and choose who can purchase them, the only real limit of the online store is your imagination. 

You can also create custom invoices if you need to sell a one-off item and want it to go via the club. This is super useful at tax time, as your one-off payments will be tracked in your system. Do you have an old bit of club equipment that you are repainting, and a club member is buying it from you? Well, you can create a one-off invoice from your phone and ensure that the system tracks the sale.  

Another great option is selling books, physical or digital, via your online store. Whether those are books that your club has published or just books covering topics that relate to your club, this can be a great way to provide extra knowledge and value to your members while adding a bit of padding to the club’s coffers.  

Sell Advertisements Via Your Club’s Online Store

Many clubs use their online store to sell sponsorship rights on their website. This allows interested businesses to purchase the right to have an ad displayed on the club's website, newsletter, business directory, etc.

Other clubs use the same approach, but instead of sponsorships, they sell the right to sell items in the club's own classified section.

Both of these methods are clever ways to use your online store to generate extra income for your club while also adding value to your membership, which can increase member satisfaction.

To find out more about how to sell sponsorship like this, please read How You Can Use Sponsors To Fund Your Club’s Membership Management Software.

To find out more about how to sell classifieds ads like this, please check out How To Turn Your Blog Module Into A Classifieds Section For Your Club.

 

Gathering Donations Via Your Club’s Online Store

One really clever way to use your club’s store is to set it up to take donations from members or the public. As a volunteer-run organisation, you will likely make most of your income from membership, and donations will be a major bonus. 

A simple and effective way for your club to receive online donations is to create a custom product on your club website. This custom product will be a donation to the club, and you can set the donation amounts according to your preference, such as $5, $10, $25, $50, etc. This will make it easy for people to donate to your club online.

You can see this in practice below on the website of the Embroiderers Guild of WA

 

Gathering Donations Via Your Club’s Online Store

This is a really simple way to quickly and easily enable your members and the general public to make donations to your club or association. 

Just ensure that you label everything very clearly; you want to ensure that everyone knows that they are donating money, not purchasing a good or service. 

Why you should Sell Club Branded Club Merchandise Via Your Club’s Online Store

Finally, the obvious one is why you should sell classic club-branded hats, hoodies, and T-shirts via your club's online store. 

Firstly, it's important to note that the previous options are not mutually exclusive. You can do all of these things and sell them all through your online store. With Member Jungle's product catalogue, you can subdivide your products into categories, making it easy for customers to navigate even if you sell t-shirts, hotel tickets, club sponsorships, and everything else.

Selling the classic clothing, stickers, drink bottles, mugs, and all the rest of it is important for a few reasons. One, that is useful stuff that members will buy and that you will earn money from, but two, because all of that branded merchandise is just free advertising. 

Here is a story for you: I have a big, comfy hoodie from an organisation I don't belong to, The Mountain Safety Collective. My dad is/was a member, and he gave me the MSC-branded hoodie that he got at a discount as a member. I love that hoodie. I’ve worn it everywhere, from the grocery store to multi-day kayaking trips, because it looks great and is super comfortable. 

Which means I’m effectively a walking billboard for the MSC. That’s the power of having t-shirts, hoodies, hats and stickers with your club’s logo on them; people end up paying you to advertise for you. 

Also, while we are talking about it, stickers with your club's logo are a fantastic idea. Yes, sell them, but also chuck a few in for free when people buy other stuff. I think I have seen more of those rectangular Yeti stickers than I have actually seen Yeti cups or coolers. I even have one of those stickers on my iPad case. 

 

Sell Club Branded Club Merchandise

 

See, there it is, alongside two other branded stickers and one that isn’t a brand but more of a personal motto. It’s important to stay upbeat and positive. 

Selling branded club merchandise is a great way to earn extra money for your club and spread brand awareness. 

Member Jungle Enables Your Club’s E-Commerce To Work On The Go 

The whole Member Jungle product catalogue is also available via the Member Jungle app. This means that you can do all of the above from your phone, which is cool, but it isn't why I'm bringing it up. 

The product catalogue on your phone means that you can process digital payments at in-person events simply by scanning the purchaser's credit card with your phone. This gives you a whole new way to sell your products during events. 

Selling your products via the app at an in person event also means that the system automatically keeps track of how many products you have sold. This means you don't have to do a stocktake post-event, which is brilliant because stocktakes are the pits. If you've never done one before, I envy your innocence. 
 

Member Jungle product catalogue

 

If you want to learn more about using the club store from your mobile device, check out Your Club’s Product Store Is Now On The Mobile App.

How To Get Started Making Extra Money Via E-Commerce For Your Club 

Hopefully, this article has given you some ideas of how you can utilise an online store to help your club. Now, let’s talk about the next steps. 

If you are a Member Jungle customer on either the Standard or Premium packages, you already have access to the Product Catalogue. So you can have a look at what you can start implementing straight away.  

If you use the Essentials package, you get the Product Catalogue as an optional extra, so Raise A Ticket and discuss with a member of the team if it is right for your club. 

If you aren’t a Member Jungle customer, then check out What Is Membership Management Software For Nonprofits? - All Your Questions Answered.

 

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