Membership sites are a fantastic way to set up a recurring, almost passive revenue stream for your blogging business. Once you lay the foundation, the process is turnkey and can launch your business to the next level. If you're a blogger with ample content to offer an existing audience, you're a candidate for a membership site.
So, where do you begin with building your membership site?
How to Begin with Building Your Membership Site
#1 – Outlining Your Exact Offer
Consider these questions:
- What is your value to the potential member?
- How will you make her life better?
- What does her life look like now compared to what it will look life after she becomes a member?
One of the main things to consider when you are thinking about creating a membership site is the exact offer to your audience. Literally, what are those five bullet points that they're gonna get that's going to deliver them amazing value beyond what they could get from free content on the web or purchased an online course, etc?
#2 – Mapping Out a Timeline
The second thing to think about is the timeline of the offer. You have to consider all the pieces of putting this membership site together. There is no such thing as a “quick launch” for a membership site. It's a process. You really need to be careful and thoughtful about how you build out a membership site.
#3 – Research Other Membership Sites
A useful exercise to do before you begin the process of building out your membership site is to research those membership sites that you find particularly attractive. Make notes of what you like visually, especially, but also the onboarding process and execution of the content to members.
For example, I love Jamie Reimer's Activity Room. Her layout is super simple. Her audience, parents in this case, really appreciate the simplicity. She has the content foundation. So, basically, she has to upload it and deliver it to her audience or to her members on a weekly or monthly basis. Once she had the foundation set up, she can press a trigger that releases the content to her membership platform.
Also study the various sections available to members such as the forum, resource section, and membership level options.
#4 – Design a Visual for Your Dashboard
The third part you have to think about is the layout, sort of the execution and how you're going to deliver it, what you want it to look like. And the last part … and I won't say the last part, I'll say the fourth part is the different tools that you're gonna use in order to execute on this membership site. So I think it's really important for you to think about the concept and to think about the deliverability of your membership site without getting buried in all the tools if that makes sense.
So, literally on a piece of paper, sketch out what you would want that to look like for yourself as a member or what you would want that to look like for your members. Very simple date at the top, activity plan or whatever your membership site happens to be. Access to printables, access to resources, monthly membership resources, annual membership resources and so on. What would that look like to the visitor to your membership site?
#5 – Decide on the Tools to Use for Membership Site
…and then, we get into the nitty-gritty in terms of the actual tools that you use…
Here are a few Membership Site Plugins to chew on:
By the way, I am making the assumption that you have a rock solid email service provider (like ConvertKit), know how to use Canva, and are using WordPress for creating content.
What comes next?
Well, there is still a lot of work to do with implementation and decision-making around tools to use but if you really want to know…
…the piece after identifying your implementation tools and building the membership site is the launch and the selling of the membership site.
How will you execute this amazing membership site that you have spent hours upon hours building?
After selling, it's the nurturing and how you take care of these members so they remain members. I tell everyone to become a member of their own site to truly experience the beauty within the site.
You are a part of it, certainly, but you also are able to sit back and relax a little bit and earn some recurring income in a very passive way, which is the goal.
So, with a lot of upfront work, energy, and time you can get your membership site off and running.
I love the membership site concept for established bloggers.
So, let's make it happen.