Check out our list and comparison of the best association management software solutions available!

Best Association Management Software | Our Top 7 Picks

The best association management software, or AMS, solutions are specifically designed to meet the unique needs of associations just like yours. With features spanning database capabilities, messaging and email tools, accounting and payment systems, and event planning, a top AMS solution is a smart move for practically any group.

The time and money that effective software saves you leaves more resources to devote to pursuing your goals and continuing to grow. However, finding the perfect software solution that directly addresses your needs and checks all the necessary boxes can be a real challenge!

As you begin your search, take the time to explore beyond the first dominant choices you come across. Other solutions typically include more specific features in nimble, more flexible structures.

That’s why we’ve compiled our top picks for the best association management software on the market – and provided our own reviews! This list spans a variety of niches and levels of comprehensiveness, so be sure to read through each section. That way you’ll get a clearer sense of the particular balance of specificity, utility, and ease-of-use that will best suit your association’s needs. Here they are:

  1. Fonteva for Associations
  2. Doubleknot
  3. Higher Logic
  4. CiviCRM
  5. Wild Apricot
  6. MemberPlanet
  7. Eleo

If a more lightweight, membership-oriented solution might be more appropriate for your software needs, be sure to check out our membership software comparison and buying guide too! Ready to get started? Let’s dive in.

 Fonteva for Associations is our top pick for the best association management software.

1. Fonteva for Associations

 Overview of this Association Management Software

Fonteva for Associations is among the best association management software solutions out there for a number of reasons.

Its comprehensive features fit within a lean and intuitive structure that can get your team up and running in no time. 

Focused on offering your team both big picture planning capabilities and more specific tools to fine-tune your strategies, events, and communications, Fonteva for Associations is a powerful partner for any membership-based organization.

Plus, the software is built on Salesforce, the world’s leading CRM platform for businesses. Integrations like these are what make a strong software solution the best software solution. Retain more members and grow like never before with one of the most agile and intuitive AMS solutions on the market!

Top Features of this Association Software

Fonteva for Associations includes a wide variety of intuitive features and tools, all designed to take your association’s digital operations to the next level. Some of its top features include:

  • Full member profiles and database. Automated and custom data reporting into your member CRM makes it easier than ever to track your members, identify areas for growth, and get a firm grasp on your own data. Built on the Salesforce platform, Fonteva can help your wealth of data start working for you.
  • Powerful event management features. Fonteva for Associations includes enterprise-level event management and planning tools, with no extra integrations necessary. Draw directly from your own data reports, contact databases, and member CRM to plan your best event yet, all in a single platform.
  • Member communities and tools. Fonteva for Associations allows you to create and customize communities and committees for your members. Plus, your members have the ability to form and manage their own groups! Organized collaboration is easier than ever with a platform designed to truly facilitate it.

Fonteva's comprehensive and intuitive features make it the best association management software available.

What Makes This a Top Association Management Software

What makes Fonteva for Associations the best association management software available? Its full integration with Salesforce. 

As a native Salesforce app, Fonteva offers associations the power and the flexibility needed to not only fit comfortably within your operations, but also to streamline every aspect of them.

There are no growing pains with Fonteva – it’s a completely scalable solution.

As a true cloud solution, Fonteva for Associations allows you to pick the functionality you need, when you need it. As your association grows additional tools and license seats can be easily added as your needs dictate.

 Doubleknot is a powerful niche association management software solution.

2. Doubleknot

 Overview of this Association Management Software

Doubleknot is a strong example of an association management software solution designed to meet the needs of a niche sector. Their core clientele? Cultural associations, nature centers, museums, zoos, and aquariums.

As organizations with completely unique needs, the best association management software is the solution that most directly addresses their needs.

Doubleknot’s clients rely on their membership programs for stable support. That’s why the software’s comprehensive and specially-designed management, data, and planning tools are their best choice for ensuring continued development and success.

Top Features of this Association Software

Doubleknot includes a full suite of association management features plus additional tools perfectly suited for the management of cultural organizations and nature centers. They include:

  • Full membership management platform. Retain more members by gaining a deeper understanding of your program’s engagement trends and demographics. Customize your communications strategies and automate online benefits like discounts and registration perks.
  • Program management tools. Full event and program configuration options let you create simple or complex tracks for your members. Plus, Doubleknot makes it easy to fully customize and update your registration forms, add-ons, payment options, and communication settings.
  • Ticketing and reservations management. Doubleknot’s fully customized online reservations platform will streamline your facilities management process and seriously boost engagement. Your members will appreciate the easy digital (and printable) ticketing system, too!

Doubleknot's top association management software is a strong choice for cultural and nature centers.

What Makes This a Top Association Management Software

Doubleknot made our list of the best association management software solutions because it’s a leader in a particularly difficult niche.

It offers fully comprehensive features that nonetheless directly address the needs of organizations and membership programs that are too often overlooked by dominant AMS solutions!

 Higher Logic ranks among the best association management software solutions available.

3. Higher Logic

 Overview of this Association Management Software

Higher Logic is among the best association management software solutions for groups that need a more general but effective and flexible suite of management tools.

The digital management toolbox provided through the Higher Logic platform offers effective, lightweight solutions for associations, commercial businesses, and nonprofit organizations alike.

Best of all, Higher Logic’s intuitive tools won’t slow your team down. Stay focused on engaging and retaining more members, instead!

Top Features of this Association Software

Higher Logic’s association management platform provides a full set of digital tools to help streamline and boost your operations:

  • Interaction-centric design. Along with customizable member communities, Higher Logic features online forum-style discussion boards, perfect for starting conversations and engaging your members for the long run.
  • Customizable databases. In addition to full member profiles, dues tracking, and other data reporting tools, the software includes knowledge databases, designed to help your team and members preserve your crucial combined industry knowledge.
  • Fundraising tools. Generate additional non-dues revenue with integrated advertising opportunities that attract new sponsors interested in connecting with your community. Plus, tighter data reports and projections make it easier than ever to plan a winning campaign.

Higher Logic is a strong association management software solution for more lightweight needs.

What Makes This a Top Association Management Software

With its lightweight yet comprehensive design, Higher Logic is generally a great choice for most groups.

Its flexible features allow your team to collect more and more data in the long run, leading to more targeted decisions and smarter, more sustainable growth.

 Highly customizable structure makes CiviCRM a best association management software solution.

4. CiviCRM

 Overview of this Association Management Software

CiviCRM is unique among the best association management software solutions because it’s completely open source.

Although it’s technically designed to meet the needs of nonprofit organizations, the highly customizable open source structure of the software makes it a great choice for associations with the resources and know-how to fine-tune a perfectly tailored management solution.

This has made CiviCRM a powerful software provider for nonprofits and associations all over the world. 

Top Features of this Association Software

A number of key features place CiviCRM among the best association management platforms available, including:

  • Open source software structure. As an open source platform, CiviCRM is inherently highly customizable and supported by its worldwide network of active users and volunteers. With some professional help, you can completely tailor the software into your own perfect management tool.
  • Full suite of membership tools. Along with comprehensive CRM and contact database features, CiviCRM includes a full toolbox for configuring and managing your membership program. Automated data reporting and smart groups make it an effective tool for associations, too.
  • Accounting integrations. CiviCRM can dramatically reduce manual data entry for your team, and its robust control system lets you fully customize the export process. This leads to more efficient, more organized, and more actionable accounting reports!

CiviCRM places top in any association management software comparison for its unique open source software.

What Makes This a Top Association Management Software

CiviCRM will sit near the top of almost any association management software comparison.

That’s because you can’t overestimate the potential value of using such a highly customizable solution for your digital management needs. 

With CiviCRM’s open source platform, you and your team of developers can completely refine the software into your own perfect association management tool.

 Wild Apricot consistently ranks among the best association management software on the market.

5. Wild Apricot

 Overview of this Association Management Software

Wild Apricot is an extremely popular, comprehensive management solution option for smaller associations, nonprofits, and clubs.

The platform leads its niche by offering strong tools to smaller and mid-sized groups that would likely be otherwise unable to access them. 

As such, Wild Apricot’s association management software is a strong general suite of digital tools that have been perfect for groups of all sorts.

Top Features of this Association Software

Some of Wild Apricot’s top features include:

  • Lightweight and accessible database. Wild Apricot’s member database tools provide a comprehensive, secure way to store all your important data in one place. Backed up in cloud storage, users can also access and update their own profiles.
  • Payment processing. Wild Apricot allows you to directly accept online payments for dues or other member purchases. Plus the renewal and reminder processes are fully automated, which also makes financial reporting a breeze.
  • Website builder tools. Create a professional website for your group in just a few hours with the software’s built-in web design tools. A drag-and-drop interface lets you quickly create a site that includes all the important information and tools that members need.

Wild Apricot ranks high in lists of association management software reviews for its comprehensive and adaptable tools.

What Makes This a Top Association Management Software

Wild Apricot is often among the top reviewed association management software solutions. 

That’s because its suite of solutions is perfectly geared towards smaller and mid-sized groups and organizations that need a comprehensive set of tools without the heavy-duty price tag.

Offering effective tools that can be easily adapted to work for all sorts of community and professional associations makes Wild Apricot a top pick.

 MemberPlanet is a great association management platform for all kinds of groups.

6. MemberPlanet

 Overview of this Association Management Software

Too often smaller organizations are unable to afford the management tools that can unlock higher levels of growth. MemberPlanet steps up to fill that niche.

As a lightweight, easy-to-use choice for small associations without the need (or budget) for more comprehensive management platforms, MemberPlanet is a strong choice for all kinds of smaller groups.

Top Features of this Association Software

Even as a more lightweight solution, MemberPlanet offers extremely effective features, like:

  • Communication tools. Easy email templates and group texting tools make it easy to direct your messaging campaigns. Spread the word to all your members quickly and easily with automated and customizable tools.
  • Simple payment processing. MemberPlanet’s ‘QuickPay’ platform is just one of their several payment tools. Collect membership dues, enable recurring payments, accept donations, and create customized invoices and forms in no time.
  • Easy-to-use member directory. Update, organize, and browse all your members in a straightforward database tool. You can customize fields and access permissions to make sure your whole team contributes to a culture of efficiency.

MemberPlanet ranks fairly high on any association management software comparison for its affordable suite of tools.

What Makes This a Top Association Management Software

MemberPlanet is a top association management software solution because it more directly fills a void that other solutions ignore, that is, smaller groups without the resources for much larger software suites.

As a straightforward management solution, MemberPlanet’s features and tools get the job done without requiring too much customization or manual input.

 Eleo is another best association management software that might be perfect for your work.

7. Eleo

 Overview of this Association Management Software

Eleo is a best association management software solution powerful solution for groups focused heavily on fundraising.

The management suite effectively doubles as a platform for nonprofit organizations that need a donor management system to handle more complex needs.

This kind of flexibility places Eleo among the best association management software solutions out there for several kinds of groups.

Top Features of this Association Software

Some of the best features of Eleo’s association management software include:

  • Donor and member databases. Eleo’s flexible database functions are perfect for organizing and storing your data and contact information for members and donors alike. Designed for fast and easy access, you can quickly search your databases for exactly the entry you need.
  • Gift entry and acknowledgements. Within Eleo’s database tools, it’s easy to track individual gifts, record essential related data, and categorize the entry. Plus, the comprehensive database view allows you to effectively manage your thank-you and acknowledgement messages.
  • Grant management. If your association or organization applies for grant funding, keeping close track of the whole grant writing process is crucial to success. Eleo’s tracking features let you manage your grant projects, keeping all the essential data and plans in one organized place.

Eleo is among the best association management software solutions for its effective fundraising tools.

What Makes This a Top Association Management Software

While most association management software solutions are useful for fundraising nonprofits (and vice versa), Eleo is designed specifically to fit between them.

Offering the best of both worlds, Eleo’s fundraising tools and easy-to-use management features make it a top association management software solution for many groups.

If your association, organization, or other type of membership-based group needs a new management solution, it’s important to do your research. Professional software can be a major investment, and this is especially true if you’ll be relying on it for such crucial functions as membership directories, event planning, online community management, and more.

One best rule of thumb: look for a lean solution. Both general and niche management software can offer extremely effective tools, but lean and integrated solutions tend to be the most flexible and useful for all situations in the long run.

Consider your group’s exact needs and use this guide as a launchpad for your research! Check out these additional resources for more information:

Download the guide to association management databases!


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