Did you know that you need WordPress plugins for membership to create a fully functional site? Are you working on an online course, building a list of loyal customers, or generating income via your website? The plugin helps you to limit the accessibility of your premium content to registered members only.
Why do you need a membership site? Here is why:
- Stamp your authority – Authorities in each niche have valuable tips and strategies to give. Anyone with the ability to provide premium content attracts loyal customers who are willing to pay to access the content. Creating a membership site makes it possible to create targeted content, attract the right audience, and demonstrate your niche's authority.
- Grow your email list – Website visitors are always willing to provide their email address in exchange for something valuable. You can create premium content then limit access to registered users only- this is an avenue to gather email addresses for people interested in the content.
- Passive income – Membership sites enjoy recurring income drawn from subscription services.
Choosing the ideal WordPress plugins for membership
Choosing the right WordPress plugin for membership makes it easy for you to meet your goals. So, which features should you consider when choosing a membership plugin?
- Compatibility– Confirm whether the plugin is compatible with your current WordPress theme before installing it. If you are not sure, test the plugin on a local WordPress install.
- Design – The features on a plugin plays a role in the price. Consider features that not only make your site look good but also helps to fulfill your objectives.
- Ease of use – Are you planning to hire a developer to assist in the site setup? If not, choose a lightweight plugin that will be easy to use. Use the basic features first, then, if necessary, install additional features to suit your need.
Some plugins come as a complete set with all features, while others have the essential elements only. Choose what suits your needs, experience, and expertise. Selecting the right WordPress membership plugin makes it easy for you to achieve your goals.
Basic plugins and requirements for running a WordPress Membership site
The membership site's performance depends on every decision from hosting, domain name, and plugins.
- A domain name is your online identity, for example, 123.com. If you need help, rely on guides on how to choose a domain name.
- Select a reliable, supportive, and affordable host. Your website files are stored in the hosting web account, so choose the provider wisely.
- An essential business plugin converts your site to a membership platform.
Let us delve deeper by looking at some of the most popular WordPress membership plugins.
1. LearnDash WORDPRESS MEMBERSHIP PLUGIN
As the name suggests, the plugin focuses on learning (online courses). It has advanced features for increased customization.
Pros of LearnDash
- Customized sale of courses – LearnDash provides website owners with options for selling their online courses. They can use a shopping cart where learners buy individual sessions. The plugin helps to restrict content to specific membership groups. Secondly, they can offer access to all their online courses to learners. Lastly, if they want learners to pay a recurring amount, the plugin provides that capability.
- Easy setup – It is easy to set up, add, and organize content on the plugin.
- Built-in membership features – Think of any element you need in an online learning platform, and you will find it on LearnDash. The plugin incorporates certificates, badges, site quizzes, user profiles, and course forums, amongst other features.
- Drip content – This is especially important if you want learners to proceed to the next learning module after completing a lower blade.
- Valuable integrations – The plugin allows you to integrate with various payment gateway. It also allows you to connect with WooCommerce, Slack, bbPress, MemberPress, etc.
Cons of LearnDash
- Limited features – LearnDash focuses on online learning, so if you want to use it for other purposes, it is not the best choice.
2. S2Member WP PLUGIN
S2Member is a WordPress membership plugin with both free and paid versions.
Pros of S2Member
- Free version – Anyone can download and test the features, although it has limited features.
- Drip feature – Allows you to roll out content as members complete previous levels.
- Restrictions – You can restrict custom post types, streaming media, specific URL fragments, categories, portions of content inside posts, file downloads, and pages/posts.
- Tools – The plugin has helpful tools such as brute-force protections, custom login welcome pages, email templates, and IP restrictions.
Cons of S2Member
- Limited features – The free version has limited features, so it is not suitable for setting up a membership site.
- Complex – The plugin is not as easy to use compared to other WordPress membership plugins.
3. MemberPress FOR WORDPRESS
Well, MemberPress is a robust tool that allows you to convert your normal WordPress site to an authoritative membership site. The plugin comes with features that make the transformation easy.
Pros of MemberPress
- Set up– To use the plugin, install it, then enter payment gateway details, your products, then your site will be ready for your members.
- The plugin automatically sets up a login, thank you pages, set up pricing, and the account.
- Integration – MemberPress integrates seamlessly with email marketing services such as GetResponse, MailChimp, MadMimi, and Aweber, among others. For podcast hosting, the membership plugin integrates with Blurry and Amazon Web services.
- Restrictions – If you install the plugin on your existing WordPress site, then you will want to restrict access to posts, pages, and files for your premium members. The plugin makes it easy to set up the restrictions.
- Payment gateways – MemberPress has an inbuilt payment service for Stripe, Authorize.net, and Paypal. You can also create pricing pages with ease.
Cons of MemberPress
- Pricing – MemberPress annual payment is $249 for the plus plan and $129 for the basic plan.
- Payment options – The plugin integrates with Paypal, Authorize.net, and Stripe only. Limited payment options integration locks out potential clients who do live countries that do not support the payment gateways.
4. Restrict Content Pro
Restrict Content Pro is a popular, flexible, and lightweight WordPress plugin for membership created by Pippin's plugins. The plugin has a free version of WordPress, but it has limited features. All the plugin's features come as add-ons.
You can use Restrict Pro to generate recurring payments from magazine subscriptions, create premium content for club memberships, form private forums, and set up a members' blogging network.
Pros of Restrict Content Pro
- Unlimited subscription levels– The plugin provides flexible subscription options. You can choose a free, premium, or trial subscription.
- Creative pricing – Which price structures do you want to use? Restrict Pro allows you to use a combination of payment structures for your members. Members can also upgrade or downgrade between plans, and the money they paid is utilized in their current plan. If you want to create a promotion, Restrict Pro lets you create a coupon code.
- Content access – Since members are at various levels. The plugin has features that restrict content per post.
- Integration – Restrict Pro works well with WooCommerce, email marketing plugins (Mailpoet, MailChimp, email manager, etc.), and payment gateways (PayPal, Stripe, 2Checkout, etc.). The plugins are free, not paid addons.
- Ease of use- The plugin integrates with WordPress, making it easy to set it up and use.
- Ready support – Whenever you need help, you can rest assured that someone will assist you within a brief time. This is attributed to the short response time.
Cons of Restrict Pro
- Limited features – the free version has limited features.
5. Teachable WORDPRESS MEMBERSHIP PLUGIN
Teachable is a standalone platform for creating and publishing online courses. You can, therefore, host the courses on the Teachable subdomain or integrate the plugin to your website.
Pros of Teachable
- Powerful editor – Enables you to create and launch sales pages that convert website visitors to paying users.
- Integration – It is easy to import content from any online tools that use Zapier, such as Dropbox, One Drive, and Google Drive.
- Tools – The plugin has tools that make the learning experience seamless for you and the learners. You can create quizzes, discussion forums and issue certificates to students once they complete their courses. If you want to roll out your course content after learners complete a level, the plugin has the drip content feature.
- Marketing – Teachable helps you to customize your site with tools that help increase your sales. Advanced pricing options, coupon codes, email marketing, affiliate programs, analytics, etc. are some of the tools available on the plugin.
- Ease of use – Teachable has built-in tools, so you upload and create content. The WordPress plugin for membership is good for non-techs as well as experienced people.
Cons of Teachable
- Non-WordPress plugin- unfortunately, Teachable is not a WordPress theme. That means you have to use a sub-domain or links to integrate it into your WordPress site.
- Cost– Since the plugin is sold as a package, it is expensive compared to other WordPress membership plugins.
Choosing a WordPress plugin for membership is not as easy as selecting other types of WordPress plugins. This is because it takes time to set up a membership plugin. Although some features are already set, there is still a lot of human effort required to set up the site fully. Pick a plugin with the features that mean the most to you. Making the right choice will save you set up time and guarantee maximum benefits from the site.