The power of product design in member engagement

Evaluating A CRM


A customer's experience interacting with your organization doesn’t start with walking into your facility, it starts online with a digital experience. First impressions matter, because the experience you provide can greatly impact their perception of your association and their level of engagement.

Today, a customer's journey with your YMCA or community center can begin long before they set foot in your facility—it may likely start online, with their digital experience. From the first click on your website, booking a class, making a payment, or joining as a new member, every digital touchpoint shapes their perception of your association and influences their engagement level.

When that initial connection takes place through your CRM, it underscores the importance of investing in the right technology featuring strong product design. The focus is clear: deliver a seamless experience for your community members. A positive digital journey not only supports member satisfaction but also drives active participation, leading to positive business outcomes for your organization.

Importance of product design

Product design goes beyond just creating a visually appealing website or app. It involves crafting an intuitive and user-friendly interface, utilizing elements of User Experience (UX) and User Interface (UI) design. A well-designed product and thoughtfully crafted digital experience simplifies members' interactions with your organization, facilitates access to information and services, and promotes engagement with fellow community members.

Organizations like Uber, Nike, Slack, and Airbnb have recognized the incredible benefits of investing in UX/UI, turning it into a foundation of their business strategies. With consumers interacting with these digital products and services now more than ever, the stakes for creating a memorable user experience and quality interaction with your organization's tools and CRM have never been higher.

How intuitive product design transforms member engagement for your YMCA

We recognize that the happiness of community members often depends on how smooth their online experience is. That's why, here at Traction Rec, our product team prioritizes integrating top-notch UX/UI design principles. In doing so, we strive to make every online interaction smooth and enjoyable for your members as they connect with their community - every click and online interaction should be enjoyable and frictionless.

Here are three key ways in which top-tier product design can enhance your association or community center. Whether it's for your customers and community members or employees, proficient UX/UI should innovate your brand, driving results both within and beyond its digital space.

1. Attracting users and boosting conversions

First impressions are lasting impressions. A user's initial experience with your website or app determines their next move — continue engaging or bounce away. If your platform is easy to use, intuitive, and provides value, members are more likely to interact with your organization. It can really make your community center shine online, boosting organic sign-ups for memberships or program registrations.

At Traction Rec, we're always diving into how our community engages with our products and services. We love using analytic tools to understand user behaviors and patterns, especially to pinpoint where they might hit a snag or encounter issues. This way, we can tackle problems at their root and fix them before they turn into bigger issues. It's all about creating that positive shift so that members can navigate your offerings and sign-up process with ease.

2. Simplifying processes and enhancing productivity

Well designed workflows that are easy, intuitive, and seamlessly interact with your CRM have the potential to eliminate confusion, reduce frustration, and saves valuable time for both staff and members. It all adds up to greater productivity and efficiency for your organization.

For members, this could mean self-service functionality and completing transactions by supplying their information only once, no matter how many fitness classes, camps, and programs they register for throughout the year (what a time saver!). For staff, automations for managing customer information, and workflows to process business operations can save time, money and sometimes a lot of frustration.

Our product and customer research allows us to increase work efficiency by understanding how our customers, and their members, use our product and tuning each area to be as easy and intuitive as possible. Recently, we've ramped up our live usability testing sessions with customers to demonstrate our latest developments. The insights gathered from these sessions help us to refine and optimize the user journey and experience. The end result? More satisfied members and visitors, translating to a thriving community center.

First, through interviews, we pinpoint what features are used the most and what frictions users may still be having. Then, through our testing and design cycles, we fine-tune each interaction and automate as many features as possible to increase their productivity.
‍3. Strengthening brand identity and customization

Look good, feel good! Want to gain more recognition for your community center? Strong branding is essential for visibility and recognition. Good UI can help by building authenticity, familiarity, and credibility. Elements like imagery, logos, colors, icons, and buttons are vital in brand marketing and market visibility across all of your digital channels.

When users navigate through the portals of your online space it’s important that they are consistent, users don’t feel like they’re leaving one site and going to another, thus producing a smooth and seamless experience.

This is where the magic of fun and creativity can come to life in product design. Our Product Team loves to get out there and visit our customers to see our product in action. It's a fantastic chance for us to have genuine conversations with both users and partners, and brainstorm fun, creative, and distinctive ways to capture their identity and elevate experiences.

How Traction Rec and YMCAs are partnering together

What better way to boost our product game than by getting our customers directly involved in shaping our products and user experience? We truly build our user experience around what our customers share with us. We're constantly working behind the scenes, from sourcing industry trends to gathering feedback from customers. Through rigorous testing, development, and refining, we're dedicated to enhancing our product, ensuring your members have the best tools to connect and engage with one another.

When great design is combined with great functionality, everyone in your community can enjoy a better experience, helping you do your amazing work. At Traction Rec, we're all about helping community centers thrive, and that means creating the tools and resources you need to build a vibrant, interconnected community to succeed and grow.

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