Heads Up – Some Tendenci Sites Are Having Content Display Issues

UPDATE: All Tendenci Sites are Back to Normal – Content is Displaying Correctly

As of 12:45 PM Central, Tendenci sites are displaying all current content once again. If you have any questions, please contact our Support team at support@tendenci.com or call 281-497-6567 ext 411.

Don’t Worry – Your Site Will Return to Normal Before Lunchtime

Newer Tendenci websites are hosted with Amazon Web Services and last night, Amazon updated their servers.  As a result, our index servers did not successfully come back online last night.

What This Means to You

Your website may not show current information and in some cases, you may not see recently added content when you log on to your website this morning.

No Data is Missing

Your data is safe and sound in the database, it may not be displaying correctly on your website.

We are restarting the production index servers and your website is re-indexing as I write this.

Our estimated timeline for all Tendenci websites to be back to normal is approximately 2 hours.

If you have any questions or concerns about something – please contact our Support team at support@tendenci.com or call 281-497-6567 ext 411.

Find Answers Faster with Tendenci’s New Support Menu

The next time you are looking for support for your website – Look Up.  We moved the support menu from your website footer up to the admin navigation bar that sits at the top of each page of your website.  The new Support drop down menu lists all the helpful links you need to learn to use your website, contact our Support team when you have a problem, search our Help Files, and make a payment.


What is This Tendenci Guide?

We also added a new Support tool to the menu – a Tendenci Guide.  This walk-through tutorial shows you how to use the different features and tools included with your Tendenci online membership management software.  This nifty guide is a mini-version of your website and is designed to quickly and easily show you how to add new pages and articles, update your home page, create photo albums and more with your association’s Tendenci website.

Easily Update Your Home Page Content!







Find Tips that Will Drive New Visitors and Revenue to Your Website!





Looking for More Tendenci Training and Support Resources?

We will be continuing to add new tips and pages to the guide and would love your help. Send us your questions and suggestions on what You would like included in the Getting Started Guide.  You can also come search our Tendenci Help Files for additional help and join our newsletter to receive updates on Tendenci Training, software changes, and web marketing tips to grow your nonprofit or professional association’s membership community directly in your email box.

Wondering If You Should Migrate to the Newest Version of Tendenci and How Much It Will Cost?

Should You Make Room in Next Year’s Budget for a New Website?

Photo by Ed Schipul
We’ve made a lot of changes with our newest version of Tendenci this year including re-coding certain key modules and features in Python and Django.  As you prepare your marketing and IT budget for next year – you may be considering whether or not it is time to update your Tendenci website CMS software to the latest version and wondering what the changes we’ve made will change for your website.

A few of you may not need to update just yet and your organization’s website doesn’t require all of the cool new bells and whistles we’ve piled into Tendenci this past year.  Most of our clients find they accomplish better results with their online marketing initiatives when they update their website every 2 years or so.  When to update also depends on your online objectives, the purpose of your website, how large your organization is and how fast it is growing.

Change is a Good Thing

If you are curious about the changes we’ve made in Tendenci – we invite you to come learn more about them through one of our Tendenci Training webinars or call us to schedule a demo for your staff.  We have been getting a lot of questions from clients trying to understand the costs and the work involved in migrating from your existing Tendenci website to the latest and greatest.  Our programmers are adding incredible new functionality almost daily to our Tendenci Online Membership Management Software and we know you’ll just love the new changes as much as we do!

Most importantly, we want you to have all the information you need to clear up any confusion about the process involved with a Tendenci website migration.  I want to clear up any confusion and answer your most common questions today so you will have all the details to add a website upgrade in your 2012 budget.  I also encourage you to Contact Us if I don’t get to your question in this post.

How much will it cost to migrate?

Migration costs will vary from client to client depending on the complexity of your website Design and Layout.  An initial Tendenci migration project can cost anywhere from $2500 to $5000.  This is an average range to tell you what you can expect and we would be more than happy to provide you with a specific quote for your organization’s website – just ask us and you’ll have an exact dollar amount to budget for within 2-3 business days.

We have completely revamped our monthly software and hosting fees alongside the changes in our software’s programming language.  The new pricing plans are month to month, and will flexibly adjust based on the amount of actual traffic and your website asset usage.  You can check out our new monthly software and hosting plans and just ask us if you have any questions.

Will I lose my data from my existing website?

Your data is protected and backed-up throughout the migration process.  In rare cases, something from the old version may not translate in the original format to the new version and may require a change in format.  During the migration, your old website remains live and your visitors and members won’t experience any disruption.

What about my members, events, invoices, etc?

The migration of content will move your member and user databases, events, invoices, files, and other data from your current Tendenci website to your new website.  Some of our modules have been redesigned to include more customization and better functionality.  Memberships, for example, now offer a ton more options and customization and your Project Manager will work with you to help you determine if you want to keep your membership types the same or select to update and take advantage of the new features during the migration.  The event calendar and event types has a brand new look that we think you’ll prefer over your old version.

What is so awesome about this new version anyways?

Our Tendenci Programming team has made so many new feature changes even we are having trouble keeping up with all of them.  Take a look at the still-growing Full List of Tendenci Features and check out what these associations are doing with their new Tendenci websites for some examples.

Schedule a demo and we will walk you through all the new changes and show you how awesome your new Tendenci website would be after migrating as well as answer all of your questions.

Should I update my website design also?

The short answer is Absolutely!

New innovations in web design come out almost every day, site visitor behavior changes over time, and then there is compatibility with different browsers and mobile devices that didn’t even exist a year or two ago.  A redesign will freshen up your association’s online Brand and ensure the best possible user experience for your members and online community.  Migration to the newest version will address and update certain things, like better search engine optimization and improved navigation and user accessibility features.

These updates are your “under the hood” features that your website visitors will experience without really knowing it.  A full redesign is like getting a spiffy new paint job on each of your website’s page templates.  If your website hasn’t been touched in more than 2 years, you will definitely want to consider adding this into your budget for 2012.

For clients who want the newer software and just don’t have the budget for custom design – we understand completely.  We have added new TendenciApp Themes that you can customize color-wise and add your organization’s logo to at a much lower cost than a custom redesign.  Check out our theme gallery and tell us which ones you like best.

Can you make my life sending email newsletters easier while you are at it?

You betcha!  We were feeling the same frustration all of you were with our older email newsletter module in Tendenci.  Our newest version of Tendenci software comes integrated with Campaign Monitor’s Email Marketing Software and gives you the tools you need to create, send, and manage your email newsletters.

In addition to how easy the new email marketing tools are to use, Tendenci’s newsletter integration offers you all the reporting and measurement tools you’re marketing team has been dreaming of – just in time for Christmas.  And the best part is – wait for it – create your email newsletter campaign and schedule it to send any day and time of the week you want and it is sent IMMEDIATELY when it is supposed to.  (Yea – you all know what I’m talking about… ) 😉

Sign-up for the Tendenci Newsletter to receive our own Campaign Monitor-Integrated Newsletter and find out about upcoming Tendenci events, training, and feature changes.

Event Management is Easier than Ever in Tendenci 5.0 for Professional Organizations

Back to School week also marks the return of Professional Organizations’ events after the summer break.  That’s why our programmers skipped summer vacation and added a ton of great features to the T5 Event Management Module.  I have been absolutely loving how much easier it is to create, manage, and update events in Tendenci 5.0 compared to Tendenci 4.0.

Check out some of the ways we’ve made it quick and easy to create and manage your organization’s Fall Event Calendar using Tendenci software.

With Tendenci’s New Single Page Event Form – It Takes Just 2-Clicks to Create an Event

We made our “Add an Event” form just ONE single page allowing you to create each new event from your website without having to sort through multiple page loads.  We made it easier to add new events inside the Admin navigation bar and now you can add a new event from any page on your website.  Click to add a new event, fill out the event details and then click to create the event – it’s that easy!

1 Page – More Event Options

We may have saved you some pages when creating your events – we didn’t skimp on the features and that page is fully loaded with customizable fields and event options to let you create and price your events in virtually any way you can imagine.  Here are just a few of the changes we made in Tendenci 5.0 compared to T4.

* Add multiple speakers to your event summary.

Simply click to add another speaker while you are creating the event, and without ever leaving the page – a new speaker box is created instantly.  After you add the new speaker’s details in, just click to add another speaker and another speaker box is revealed.  Repeat until you’ve added your entire panel without ever leaving the event form.

Easily Add multiple speakers to Tendenci 5 event form

*Automatic addition of Google maps to help show your guests how to get to your event.

Just fill in your event’s address on the event form and when you save it, Tendenci will automatically add a Google map to your event summary.  Registrants can view the venue on a map, click to get directions from their location, and all the cool extra map functions that Google Maps includes like street views and searching for nearby places.

*Add multiple ticket prices based on membership types.

Tendenci Events lets you set a different price for members than non-members, and you can segment your ticket prices by membership types, students, and corporate levels to create as many different ticket prices as you want.

*We listened to your requests and have added bundled ticket packages.

Tendenci now has the ability for you to sell Ticket Bundles for special group events like a Golf Tournament or Table Sponsorships.  You decide how much the bundled package costs AND how many tickets are in the bundle.  And you can create as many different ticket bundles as you need for your event – in the same single page event form!

*Discount Codes!

Tendenci 5.0 includes the ability to create custom discount codes for events that allow you to offer special promotional discounts.  Have a little fun creating unique discount code names, then easily track where your registrants are hearing about your event and signing up by tracking registration based on discount codes used.

*Manage the entire registration and payment process on your website with our payment integration options.

Tendenci integrates with Authorize.Net and FirstData credit card merchant services.  Your guests can register and pay on your website event calendar.

Your Website Guests Will Love How Easy it is to Register for Events Too!

We know that creating the event online is only one part of event management and that’s why we included tons of new features in Tendenci for administering the event after you’ve created it.

These features will save you time and frustration before, during and after your event.

*New Reporting tools for you.

We included event reporting tools that allow you to easily find invoices, see who has paid and who hasn’t, calculate totals and more.

*Communicate with your event registrants about any changes or announcements via email quickly with our event email tool.

You can select all registrants, paid registrants, or unpaid registrants and immediately send an email update for your event to your attendees.

These are just some of the new features that Tendenci 5.0 includes for managing events.  If you want to know more, then check-out our upcoming Event Management with Tendenci 5.0 Free Webinar or just Contact Us to schedule a demo of all of Tendenci 5.0’s capabilities.

Membership Management Module for Tendenci 5.0 Launches

Tendenci Membership Module Dashboard Icon

At the end of June, we announced the release of Tendenci 5.0 – the newest version of the Tendenci CMS platform that helps businesses, non-profit organizations, and associations manage memberships and events on their websites.   We have made some big improvements in the core membership module between Tendenci 4.0 and Tendenci 5.0 (T5 as we like to call it here at Schipul) and we think you are going to love them!
Tendenci Membership Module Dashboard Icon

T5 Memberships are Customizable

Tendenci Add New Membership Type ScreenshotOur membership management tools enable you to customize the membership titles, membership applications, reminders and renewal notices.  Once you have set-up membership types and imported and approved members then you can also customize your membership directory (listing pages).  The T5 membership module enables your organization to easily create and update the levels of memberships, your communications to your members, and more!

T5 Memberships are Flexible

You now have the ability to set-up a variety of different membership types/levels, different prices for the membership levels and for renewals, length of memberships, management of expirations, grace periods and renewals.  A few examples of how we have increased flexibility in Tendenci Membership Management:

  1. You can create a student membership level that costs $25 and is good for 1 year, and also create a corporate membership that costs $150 that lasts 2 years.
  2. You can set-up a membership to expire in any number of days, months, or years that you would like.
  3. You can have a membership expire with a 30-day grace period, a discount for renewing before the expiration date, and more!

Tendenci Membership Application Screenshot

T5 Memberships are Selective

Want corporate members to receive discounts on job board postings and regular members to be able to apply for free?  With the new Tendenci membership module – you control what content your members can access, can update, and what price they pay for things like events and job board postings.  Members can pay a reduced fee to register for an event and you can control who is allowed to update event photos to a gallery or view and contribute to content on the website.  Having more control over what members can and cannot access allows you to offer more members-only benefits to increase sales of memberships.

T5 Memberships are Unlimited

The different ways you can customize and manage memberships for your organization on your website are virtually limitless and best of all – Tendenci 5 allows for you to have an unlimited number of membership types.

We also make it easy for you to import membership from your Tendenci 4 website when you call us to migrate or if you are not on Tendenci – we can import your members and memberships from a CSV file.

Beginning in August, we will be holding free online webinar training on how to use Tendenci 5.0’s membership management tools and if you would like to find out more about upgrading to Tendenci 5.0 – give us a call and we’ll schedule a live demo just for you.

T5 – Tendenci Upgraded

Tendenci 5 Calendar

UPDATE: As of Tendenci 6+ Full Newsletter Functionality is Enabled through Extremely Low Cost Email Relays like Mailgun. If you are hosted in the Tendenci Cloud you may want to read the helpfile on how to send email through Tendenci.

Over the past year, we have been updating several sites to the 5th version of Tendenci which we lovingly call T5. The new software brings several of the features you love from Tendenci like:

  • Association and Membership Management
  • Event Calendar and Registration
  • Job board listings
  • Stories for featured content
  • Photos and Photo sets
  • Basic Pages
  • Articles, News, Resumes, Business Directory, and many others

We have added a few new features as well, such as:

  • Boxes for quick content editing
  • Easier template editing
  • Videos gallery
  • Case Studies
  • Staff Profiles

Tendenci 5 has been launched on several sites, including the Houston Technology Center (HTC) and Discovery Green. We also run T5 on Schipul.com with 12 different dynamic content areas on the homepage alone.

Tendenci 5 Calendar
HTC Calendar
Tendenci Dynamic Content
Discovery Green Homepage
Tendenci Photo Albums
Photo Albums

The Tendenci development team is making updates and adding new functionality daily, all of which is automatically added to all Tendenci 5 sites. We’d like to highlight a couple of the backend features that we think make Tendenci a standout product.

Open Source Platforms

Tendenci 5 is built on top of several open source technologies. We utilize apache for our web server, a free software that powers some of the largest sites on the internet. Our databases our in Postgres, which provides similar functionality to Microsoft SQL databases without any of the licensing fees. Our servers live in the cloud, to provide maximum uptime and durability. The Linux operating system powers our servers, and provides us with great open source tools to help enhance the websites that run on top of it. And the specialized search indexing functionality comes from Solr, an open source product that provides fast, accurate search results for sites with thousands of pieces of content.

The crown jewel is Django, a framework built in python that supports thousands of websites. The Django community continues to provide active development and security updates, which helps keeps Tendenci secure. Django and python offer speed and functionality for publishing content and have a highly flexible template system to make your site your own. The built-in tools in Django allow the Tendenci development team to makes changes quicker and make the software more flexible.

T5 Additions

Tendenci allows organizations to manage memberships as well as groups of people that may not be paying members. T5 takes these associations and allows admins to create selective benefits for members on the website. For example, a site could have a set of Members-Only pages where members could read articles or see news updates that weren’t available to the general public. These selective benefits also apply to event registration, so specific member groups can be offered a lower rate than non-members. These controls allow organization administrators to provide extra benefits to their membership which can help increase member turnover and grow the organization.

New advancements have also been made in site-wide search. Tendenci utilizes Solr search combined with Haystack to create a fast and accurate search across multiple apps at once. This means you can search for Articles, News releases, Jobs, Resumes, and Photos all from the same search box. The search also handles all of the selective benefits, so each member can only search content they are permitted to see. Site-wide search allows administrators to filter through all of their content and site visitors to find the info they need.

Tendenci has advanced features for administrators that let them perform advanced actions more quickly. There is an admin bar across the top of the website where admins can quickly jump to different apps in the software like articles or events. Admins can view reports, update their template, or add a new photo set all from the admin bar. Because of the selective benefits described above, different site users may have access to different pieces of content.

UPDATE: Impersonation was removed for increased security:  Tendenci 5 comes with impersonation, the ability to view the website as another user. Admins can quickly impersonate a user to see how the website looks for them. We have found this to be a time-saving feature that gives administrators a quick tool to check security settings for their content.

In previous versions of Tendenci, it was difficult for a single website to have a customized feature in the “core” code. Tendenci 5 helps this in two ways: Templates and Plugins. Templating is a feature of Django, and Tendenci leverages it to allow site owners to customize every part of the visual display of their site. From customizing automated emails to changing a list to a grid, template customization gives site owners the power to make the software work for their organization. Plugins are completely new to Tendenci. Our plugin system allows site owners to activate custom plugins for them. This may be in the form of an app like a Testimonials list or a Donations plugin. These plugins can be completely customized. Get with our sales team for more information on custom plugins.

In addition to this post, we will be spotlighting some of the newest functionality in Tendenci 5 right here on the blog, so be sure to subscribe if you have already migrated to T5 or are interested in migrating. For more info, please contact Tendenci..