Want to build a membership site ? For a long time, site owners relied solely on advertising revenue and affiliate to monetize their content.
A membership site allows you to earn money online by allowing users to pay for premium content, features and access to the community.
You will need a platform that has features for managing users, memberships, payments, etc. Fortunately, there are some really great membership plugins for WordPress that make it very easy.
In this step by step, we will show you how to easily create a WordPress membership site without any coding knowledge.
What you need to start a WordPress membership site?
Unlike 10 years ago, it is quite easy to make a website the following days. Of all the platforms and Web site builders, WordPress makes it easy for anyone to build their own membership site and start selling with little or no technical skills.
You will need the following three things to get started:
- A domain name. This will be your website address (eg webosu.com).
- A web hosting account. This is where your website files are stored.
- A membership addon (It allows you to convert your regular website into a platform for membership).
You can set up a fully functional membership site with WordPress in less than 30 minutes and we’ll walk you through every step of the process.
Here are the steps we will cover to help you make a website with WordPress powerful adhesion.
- Getting started with a membership site
- Choosing a WordPress plugin members
- Setting up your membership site
- Adding payment methods
- Adding membership levels
- Restricting access based on membership plans
- Creating members only content
- Creating a pricing page
- Adding forms and sign connection
- Customizing email templates
- Viewing reports to develop your website
- Extending your website membership
Ready? Let’s start.
Step 1. Getting Started with WordPress website subscription
To create a membership site, you must ensure that you use the right WordPress platform. Yes, there are two types of WordPress.
We recommend using the self-hosted WordPress.org release because it gives you unlimited access to all the features and tools you need (see full comparison WordPress.com vs WordPress.org).
Typically, a domain name cost around $ 14.99 / year, web hosting around $ 7.99 / month, and SSL certificate costs about $ 69.99 / year.
If you are a beginner, these start-up costs can increase quickly.
Once you have signed up for hosting, the next step is to install WordPress. Follow the instructions in our step by step guide on how to start a WordPress blog, and you’ll be up and running in no time.
Since Bluehost WordPress is already pre-installed, you can switch to configure your WordPress membership site.
Step 2. Choosing a WordPress Membership Plugin
There are many WordPress plugins free and paid members you can use. However, each has its own advantages and disadvantages. We have a full comparison of the best plugins members of WordPress.
To choose the right WordPress plugin members, you must decide what type of membership website do you want to build and what features do you need?
If you just want to allow user registration on your WordPress site, you can use WPForms. It is a WordPress form generator plugin that allows you to easily create user login forms and registration. You can even allow users to submit articles without accessing the administration area of WordPress.
On the other hand, if you want subscriptions sales, paid content or digital downloads, then you will need a more robust WordPress plugin members as MemberPress.
MemberPress comes with advanced membership features that allow you to accept payments, create membership levels, restrict access based levels, and more.
Selling online courses can be another possible scenario. In this case, you will need LearnDash, LMS complete WordPress plugin with all learning management functionality.
You can also integrate LearnDash MemberPress to create a powerful website with online courses, and membership fees.
That being said, we will start setting up your WordPress membership site.
Step 3. Setting up your WordPress site membership
We choose MemberPress our go-to plug-in because it has all the features we mentioned above, and it works well with third-party plugins needed for the growth of your business.
The first thing you need to do is install and activate the plugin MemberPress. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.
Upon activation, you must visit the MemberPress “Options page to configure settings for plug-in.
Step 4. Add a payment method
The options page is divided into different tabs. The first thing you need to develop is a payment gateway, because it allows you to accept payments on your membership site.
You can do this by going to the “Payments” tab, then selecting your payment gateway.
MemberPress supports PayPal (Standard, Express and Pro), Stripe and Authorize.net out of the box. You must select the payment method you want to configure and provide the required credentials.
You can also add multiple payment methods by clicking the Add button to add another form of payment.
We generally use two options: stripe for credit cards and PayPal as a secondary option because some users prefer PayPal over to give details of your credit card.
Do not forget to click on “Update Options” at the bottom of the page to save your settings.
Step 5. Create Membership Levels
The next step is to create membership levels that your users can buy. Each membership level can have different tariff plans, benefits and access. You can even have a free membership plan.
To create a page membership level, you must go to MemberPress “Member and click the button” Add New “above.
On the next page, enter a title for this particular plan membership and provide details of the plan in the post editor.
You have to set pricing and expiry of this plan in the section membership conditions.
In the example above, we have created an annual subscription plan.
After that, you have to scroll down to the box Membership options Meta below the message editor. This is where you can customize the permissions and membership options for the particular procedure.
Once you are satisfied with the membership plan, you can click the Publish button to make it available.
Go ahead and repeat this process to create as membership plans that you need.
Step 6. Restrict access to membership schemes
The next step is to select the content would be available to the different levels of membership on your website. MemberPress makes it very easy to control access using “rules.”
You can configure rules by visiting the MemberPress Rules “and clicking the Add button New above.
The edit page rule allows you to select different conditions and to involve a membership plan.
For example, you can select all the content that corresponds to a label or category to be available only to members with money purchase plan.
You can also create more specific rules. For example, a single post or page, kids pages, or a specific URL.
Below the rule editor, you will see the options drop by drop content and expiration.
Content drip allows you to gradually release content to users instead give everything at once. The expiration option makes the content available after a set period of time.
If you’re not sure, then you should leave them without control.
Once you are satisfied, go ahead and click the button “Save the rule” to save your settings for the rule.
Repeat the process to create rules more necessary for your membership site.
Step 7. Adding content to members
MemberPress makes it super easy to create content for members using the rules.
In the example above, we have created a rule that limits all content labeled as paid to be limited. Now all we have to do is create our premium content and add the label paid to it.
MemberPress also adds “MemberPress unauthorized access” METABOX in the post editor. This allows you to select the offline users (non-members) will see when they reach this content.
You can use the default global or you can show clips, login form or a custom message.
Once you’ve added members only content you can go ahead and publish it. Such as page reloads, you’ll see a success message that the content is protected.
Step 8. Create a price page
This is the page your users will see when they want to sign up for a membership plan. On this page, users will be able to choose a membership plan and then move to the payment page.
Users who try to access restricted areas or paid your website will be redirected to this page.
You can set this by going MemberPress “Groups page and clicking the Add button above New
First, enter a title for the group plan page. This will also be the title of the Plans page that users will see.
Then go down to METABOX ‘Options group and add memberships you want to display on the page.
You can also select a theme for the pricing table. MemberPress comes with a few templates ready for it.
Once satisfied, click the “Publish” button to make your plan publicly visible.
To view your pricing page, click on “View Group” after its publication.
Redirect the user to the price page
Now that we have the loan pricing page, the next step is to redirect unauthorized users to the price page.
To do this, you must first visit MemberPress “Groups page and copy the URL next to the group created in the previous step.
After that go to MemberPress “Options page and scroll to the” non-authorized access.
You must check the box next to “redirect unauthorized visitors to a specific URL” option and paste the URL of the group copied earlier.
Click the “Options Update” button to save your settings.
Now unauthorized users will be redirected to the price plans the page when trying to access a members only.
Step 9. Add Register and user login forms
Now that you have everything set up, it’s time to allow users to easily find their way around your website.
First, you must add a user login form so members can log in to their accounts.
Go to Appearance »Widgets and” MemberPress login “widget to a sidebar.
Then we’ll add the link to the pricing page to navigation menu, so new users can choose a plan and enroll.
You can do so by visiting the appearance “page menus in your WordPress admin. In the left column, you must click on the Groups tab to expand it. It will show the rate plan group that you created earlier.
Check the box next to your pricing page and click the button “Add to the menu.”
The price plan page now appears in the right column. You can drag and drop to change its position in the menu. You can also edit and change the link text.
Do not forget to click the Save menu button to save your changes.
You can now disconnect from the WordPress admin area and visit your site to see everything in action.
Step 10. Membership Customizing email Templates
Your WordPress plugin member sends multiple notifications by Members to email. MemberPress allows you to easily edit the emails and make changes to include your own brand.
Just go to MemberPress “Options page and click on the tab” Emails “. From here you can manage e-mail notifications sent by MemberPress
You’ll see all email notifications sent by Member MemberPress and administrators. You can click on the edit button to customize these views
You can use a text editor to edit the message with basic formatting options and smart tags to insert dynamic elements such as names, user name, membership level, and more.
Make sure you click “Send test” to send you some test notifications. This will ensure that MemberPress can send notifications by email.
If you experience problems receiving email notifications, then check out our guide on how to solve WordPress does not send email problem.
Step 11. Viewing reports to develop your membership website
To grow a business, you need data to make informed decisions. MemberPress comes with built in reports to see how your membership website is doing.
Just go to the MemberPress “Reports page. From there, you can sort reports by month, year, or every time data.
It will show the number of active members, inactive, free, pay, and overall. It will also show the average value of lifetime membership and other data. You can scroll down to see more graphics and click on a date to see transactions.
However, the most important metric for judging the success of a membership website is user participation.
This is where you need Google Analytics. This allows users to see where you come from and what they do when they are on their website.
MonsterInsights, the most popular Google Analytics Plugin for WordPress, offers complete integration MemberPress that facilitates enabling enhanced ecommerce tracking to MemberPress.
For detailed instructions, see our guide on how to track user participation through Google Analytics in WordPress.
Taking its Web site membership to the next level
MemberPress is a powerful WordPress plugin membership. It allows you to easily grow your website membership.
Works seamlessly with LearnDash, you can easily create courses and leave the selling party to MemberPress.
It can also be used together with BuddyPress and bbPress.
Here are some other useful resources to help you grow your membership site WordPress.
- WordPress plugins essential – Our choice of the expert must have WordPress plugins for all business websites.
- Word Press speed and performance – The ultimate guide on how to speed up WordPress and improve performance.
- WordPress Security Guide – This step by step guide will help you improve the security of your WordPress site.
- Selecting the perfect theme – beginners guide on selecting the perfect theme for your website.
- Common errors WordPress – The final list of common mistakes and how to fix WordPress.
That’s all, we hope this article helped you set up your website members WordPress. You may also want to watch our step by step guide for beginners SEO WordPress.