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A Guide to the Member Directory

Learn about the features, how to navigate the directory list, which members will be displayed, and how the display order is determined.

Melisa Smith avatar
Written by Melisa Smith
Updated over a week ago

Your members look to you as a source of professional wisdom. The go-to for industry contacts and networking. Why not make it easy for members to learn about and communicate with each other via directories?

This article covers:

The Basics

The member directory allows site visitors to see individualized profiles for groups of members in your database. You can choose to:

  • Create multiple different directories based on groups - all members, new members, certain member types, directories based on custom fields, etc.

  • Show directories to the public or have visibility locked down to a certain group (or multiple groups).

  • Use the Featured Directory Listings feature to bring in ancillary revenue while boosting your advertising efforts on your site.

  • Utilize a Map View option of your members to display them on a map or in a list.

Note that you have an editable content region directly above the search bar and another at the bottom of your directory pages that can be unique for directory landing pages and filtered pages.

Pro Tip: Display all of your current members, but keep their contact information hidden from the public so only logged-in members can contact them and reinforce that access is a member benefit!

Create a New Directory

Learn how to set up new online directories and the related settings you can select for each directory: Creating Online Member Directories in Novi

Who Appears in the Directory?

Groups are the base on which your Directories are built, allowing multiple listings that can include any of your records, members and/or non-members. Each of your directories has unique URLs and can have different settings from other directories.

Items of note:

  • Groups can only include member records that have been approved. Example: Potential members who are still pending admin approval cannot be displayed in a directory.

  • Related members who are approved can be included in a directory. Example: An apartment community linked to a management company.

  • Inheriting members may also appear in a directory, if you have opted to show them. For more info, see the Company Staff Lists section below.

  • Individual members can be displayed in the directory (showing people's addresses is optional!)

How To View a Member's Directory Profile Page(s)

From the backend staging area on the member's record, click View On Frontend to view the member's directory profile on the frontend of the website. If they are in more than one directory there will be a drop-down list of links to each directory profile page.

Items of note:

  • Records that are in multiple directories will display uniquely in each directory according to that directory’s settings. That is, if Company ABC is listed in the “New Members Directory” showing contact info to the public, the contact information will show in that directory listing. The same Company ABC also in “Supplier Directory” showing contact info only to logged-in members with benefits will not display the contact information in that directory unless viewed by a logged-in member.

  • Records that are marked as Featured Directory Listing (on the Settings tab of the member's record) will be featured in all directories if the following are true: 1) they are included in the directory, and 2) the directory settings have Featured Listings turned on.

  • For members who opted in to Hide Contact Info on their individual record, their contact info will be hidden regardless of the directory settings.

Navigating the Member Directory

Search & Filter

Website visitors searching through a directory have multiple options to find what they’re looking for.

  • They can also filter down their search by utilizing more than one search feature at a time. Example: Searching for a keyword in a certain area of expertise.

Category View

Enables an alphabetized category display with a unique URL.

  • Example: Areas of Expertise - Find a supplier member through the service they offer.

Random vs Alphabetical Sorting

There are two options for the sort order of your directories:

  • Random (recommended)

  • Alphabetical


The entire directory is loaded at random to achieve fairness of placement throughout the directory. AAA Company shouldn't always be first while ZZZ Company is always last.

The randomized order displayed will change every hour, giving users plenty of time to search through the directory without seeing the same member twice.


People are alphabetized by last name, and companies are alphabetized by company name. Also note, within the groupings listed above, people and companies may be mixed together (depending on your member types and settings).

How to set the directory sort order:

  • Click to Edit an existing directory or use the button Add Directory to create a new directory.

  • In the Settings section, select the Sort Order: Random (recommended) -or- Alphabetical

  • Click the Save & Close button

How the final sort order is determined for the directory listings:

No matter which Sort Order you select above, the members will be grouped within the following ordered sections:

  1. Featured members before non-featured (if applicable per Association Settings)

  2. Members with benefits before those without (member status is current, grace, or inheriting)

  3. Dues-paying members before beneficiaries

  4. Inheriting members (if applicable per settings)

Within each of these sections, records will be sorted as follows:

  • If alphabetical sorting - records will be sorted by Last Name then First Name (for individuals) and by company name for organizations.

  • If random sorting - records will be sorted randomly and the order will change every hour

What Information is Displayed in a Directory Listing?

On your main directory landing page, visitors will see a preview of the member's:

  • Name

  • Logo/Headshot

  • Phone Number

  • Physical Address (pulls from Shipping Address fields)

  • Email Address

  • Social Media Links

  • Member Type (pulls from the Display Name for Directories field)

  • Related People List (for organizations; optional)

When someone clicks on a member's listing, also known as a Member Profile Badge, they will be taken to the member's profile page where they can see:

  • Contact information

  • Member description (i.e. Company Overview or Professional Bio)

  • Directory Gallery

  • Custom field info, such as Areas of Expertise

  • Related contacts and members

  • Facebook and Twitter feeds

  • And more!

Don't forget, if you'd prefer that members are contacted through a contact form rather than their email address being on display, there's a setting for that!

Important Note for Featured Directory Listings:

If this feature is turned on for a directory, the info displayed will be a little different. All featured listings will appear as described above, but non-featured listings will only have the bare bones.

When featured directory listings are turned on, you can decide if Email, Phone, Address, Website, Contacts/Related Members, Logos/Headshots, Directory Gallery and Special Offers show for these profiles.

Example Directory Profile Page:

Members can easily update their profile and company profile within their Member Compass to bring their listing to life.

Organization People Lists

When determining if related people should show in a directory, consider the following:

1. Related People List: Should the people of an organization be listed on the organization's profile page?

  • If yes, the organization's record will have a Contacts list (see screenshot above).

2. Related People Pages: If people related to the organization are listed, should they also have their own profile pages and be searchable in the directory?

  • If yes, each person in the Contacts list will also have a View Profile button (see screenshot above).

  • On the main directory page, users will be able to search for these people. The profiles will be displayed at the end of the directory list, after the dues-paying members.

  • Note: If Featured Directory Listings is turned on, these settings will affect what information is shown on the staff profile pages.

Show Related People Lists

If a directory should include staff lists on company records, this setting is turned on/off within the directory's setup. There are two options to choose from:

  1. Related People List: show all related people, regardless of membership status

  2. Related People List - Member Benefits: only show related people who have a status of current or inheriting

Show Related People Profile Pages

If related people should have their own profiles in the directory, this is determined by the group's setup. Check which group is being used in the Directory setup (by looking at the "Members To Include" field), then go to the group and be sure to use a condition or group beneficiary setting to include these people in the group.

Directory Gallery

Directory galleries must be enabled to display on member directory listings. Once setup, galleries are a media carousel supporting photo images or video links from Youtube, Vimeo or Wistia. Members will be able to showcase their products and services on their directory profile!

Member Map View & Location-Based Filter Settings


The directory Map View is an interactive tool that allows you to showcase your company members in a geographical location map view (powered by Google Maps).

The list view and map view each have unique URLs, so you can link to them or include them in your website navigation separately. However, in both instances, directory visitors can toggle between the two views by clicking on the buttons at the top right of the directory page.

By default, the map is zoomed in to show where most of your members are congregated. For example, if your association is county-based, your map will start off much more zoomed in than the map for an association with international members.

Address Information

Addresses shown in the directory are always based on the members' Shipping Addresses, not Billing or Personal. Likewise, a record will not appear in the map view if they:

  • Do not have a shipping address

  • Have their contact information hidden from the directory

  • Have their address hidden from the directory

Hovering over the members in the list view will highlight them within the map. Similarly, clicking on a point on the map will reveal the member's contact information.

Note that results in the map view are paged, meaning that only the results on the current page will show on the map. However, the ordering and visibility rules of how members appear and who can see them follow the same set of rules as the list view.

Searching & Location Filters

Directory visitors can use a variety of tools to search in the map view. The general search box works the same as the list view.

  • Search Near Address will search near an address entered in the field.

  • Use Current Location attempts to find the visitor's location and displays results in that area. Note that this is a browser-specific setting that determines if location tracking is permitted, so please make this known if anyone has issues using this tool.

You can choose to turn on/off location-based filters in the settings for each of the directories that you want to enable a Map View. For more info, see the Setting up the Map View & Location Filters section below.

  • City - Textbox

  • State/Province - Text box: "starts with" or state abbreviation
    Note: If the user types in a state abbreviation or state name, the directory will find matches for both the name & abbreviation. For example, if the user types “FL”, results will include addresses with the state listed as FL and Florida.

  • Zip/Postal Code - Textbox

  • County/Parish - Textbox

  • Country - Textbox (only applicable if the country field is turned on in settings)

Setting up the Map View & Location Filters

The map view and location filters are only visible if you elect to turn them on in the directory settings - they are not on by default. To do so:

  • Navigate to the main directories list by clicking Directories under Members

  • Open a directory to Edit

  • Under Settings, toggle on Map View

Items of note:

  • Once you turn on the map view settings for the first time, Google Maps is working hard in the background to populate your members into this view. This initial process can take several hours to complete, so please keep that in mind.

  • Note that you do not need to turn on the map view in order to use the location filters. One can exist without the other! 😀

Ready to create a new directory?

Other Member Directory Features & Resources

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