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Frequently Asked Questions

Who created Groups Engine?

Groups Engine was created by Eric Murrell in Nashville, TN. In addition to his WordPress development projects, Eric is the Creative Director for Long Hollow, a large multi-site church that has been blessed with explosive growth over the past 15 years.

After being disapointed by the "clunkiness" and poor performance of existing group search solutions, Eric set out to build a new tool based on his experience in the trenches. Groups Engine is the result of many months of research, trial and error, and an unbelievable amount of coffee.

Why is this better than the group search in my church management system?

A lot of software packages include group search as a part of their offerings, but it's rarely any good. That's why we created Groups Engine.

Groups Engine provides a powerful search interface that's focused on group discovery and ease-of-use. It's also extremely flexible, allowing you to easily customize both the content displayed and the design of the Groups Engine browser.

Groups Engine also includes a robust contact management system, making followup a breeze and allowing your group leaders to respond to contacts with just one click (no login required). Add in a graceful, lightning fast reporting system, and you have a groups management tool like nothing else on the market.

We don't use WordPress... Can we still use Groups Engine?

Groups Engine requires WordPress to function. If you don't use WordPress for your main website, you might consider making a WordPress "microsite" for your groups ministry and using Groups Engine there.

What is the yearly/monthly fee?

Zero. Zilch. Your one time purchase of a Groups Engine license entitles you to use the plugin for life, including free updates. It's the best investment your groups ministry will ever make.

I'm seeing "development mode" and loading errors on my maps. Can you help?

Google recently made some changes to the Google Maps service that seems to randomly effect some servers where Groups Engine is installed. The good news is that it's very easy to fix by adding a free API key. Read through our support document here.

How can I get plugin updates?

Plugin updates can be found in the WordPress updater along with your other plugins and themes. If you're not seeing updates, be sure to check out the "Check for Updates" page in the Groups Engine menu (for older versions of the plugin).

What is the current version of Groups Engine?

Groups Engine is currently on Version 1.3.5. Click here to view our changelog of updates.

Is it easy to install?

Yes! Most users are up and running in less than 30 seconds. Simply upload the plugin file to WordPress and click install. Groups Engine also includes a detailed user guide to help you along the way.

Can I import my groups from a spreadsheet or other software?

Due to the complex sorting and organization that goes on behind the scenes, Groups Engine requires ministries to manually enter their groups into the system. Thankfully, Groups Engine is so intuitive that the process goes really fast. We also include the ability to quickly duplicate similar groups so the process goes even quicker.

How does the contact system work?

As users explore groups in the Groups Engine browser, they can contact group leaders using a simple form. When a message is sent, all of the group's leaders and your Groups Engine administrators will receive an email notification.

The email your group leaders receive contains a unique encrypted link that allows leaders to update a contact with just one click (no log in or additional action required). Your administrators can also view and update contacts at any time in the Groups Engine menu in the WordPress portal.

What kind of reports does Groups Engine provide?

Whether you need to gather data for a meeting or print a list for the welcome desk, Groups Engine makes it easy to generate custom reports in a matter of seconds. You can output a list of groups, a list of recent contacts and notes, and even a list of group leaders.

Even better, Groups Engine also generates .CSV files that you can edit as spreadsheets in Excel, Numbers, and other applications. It will quickly become your favorite tool in your digital arsenal.

Can groups meeting in homes keep their addresses private?

Yes! Groups Engine allows you to specify the full address for a group, just a steet name, or even just a city and postal code. No matter how much information you choose to provide, you can also elect to keep the address private from public view.

Don't want to use maps at all? You can remove them from the Groups Engine browser entirely using the custom embed code generator.

Can I resell the Groups Engine?

Yes, a licensed copy of Groups Engine may be resold to another client/organization as part of a web package from you/your company. We require that one license is purchased for every client that will use the Groups Engine plugin. Discounted bulk-packs are available if you would like to regularly offer implementations of Groups Engine to your clients.

Groups Engine may not be resold on its own, and individual components of Groups Engine may not be commercially distributed without prior written consent from Volacious. Please don't steal.

Do you have an affiliate program?

Yes! We're blessed to have so many customers who recommend the Groups Engine to friends that we've developed a special (free!) program that will give you $30 for every copy sold through your affiliate link! You can learn more and sign up here.

Is it compatible with my version of WordPress?

Groups Engine is compatible with WordPress 3.8 and later.

Is it compatible with WordPress Multisite?

Yes, Groups Engine is fully compatible with WordPress multisite.

Will Groups Engine work with my theme?

Probably. Groups Engine has been tested with hundreds of the most popular WordPress Themes, and is coded to be as compatible as possible. In the event that some overzealous Theme formatting makes the Groups Engine browser display oddly, please email and let us know. We issue periodic Theme compatibility updates.

Can I try the plugin on my site before I buy?

No, but we'll happily give you access to our demo site where you can "kick the tires."

Can I use the plugin on multiple sites?

One license for the Groups Engine allows you to use the plugin on all sites that you (as an individual or an organization) directly own. If you're a web developer or designer using the plugin for client sites, each client will need to purchase their own license (which can be used on all of their properties).

Does it work on mobile devices?

Yes! Groups Engine was built from the ground up to look incredible on laptops, tablets, smart phones, and everything in between. It's fully responsive with no loss in functionality no matter how you view it.

What if I need support?

Groups Engine includes a detailed User Guide and periodically receives free updates and new features via WordPress's plugin update system. Limited email support is available through the form at the top of this page. Please note that we are normally able to respond to requests within two business days. Phone support is not available.

Do I have to pay with PayPal?

Although we use PayPal to process our payments, you do not need a PayPal account to complete the checkout process. Once you reach the PayPal login page, simply locate "Don't have a PayPal account" on the left side of the page and click "Continue." You can pay using a Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover card.

What about refunds?

As is typical with any piece of software, we are not able to issue refunds; all sales are final. Please be sure to thoroughly read the system and skill requirements before completing the purchase process. Remember, we will happily set up a test drive for you to evaluate the software before your purchase.