A lot of experts would tell you that creating a membership website is pretty simple. Well they're not wrong. Selling paid memberships is a profitable plan you can implement easily. But there are always big 'IFs'. It is profitable IF you have a good idea that sell. It'll work IF you're using the right tools or IF you're marketing them well.
So we've put together a list of strategies you should try out that will help you see success with your membership site.
1) If you think your idea is good it probably is
If an idea for a subscription has begin to take shape in your head, it might actually work. Any plan for a business begins with one idea that builds up eventually. But if you overthink it you may not actually put your plan into action.
- We recommend you take a look at this post. This article serves as a kind of Litmus test to see if your idea is viable and can be forced to take shape. Follow the tips there and try apply them to your idea. You'll have a better understanding if this idea of yours will work.
- You can also use a bunch of customers as testers. Set up a really low fee for your test model and see if they're interested. Get your hands on all the feedback they're giving you. That way you'll know what to expect when you sell your stuff to a whole market.
2) Steal ideas from membership sites you've signed up for
Everyone's signed up for some membership plan or the other. And you would have too. Well, think back. What made you sign up. Obviously they offered you something of value. Visit different membership sites and see what're offering to hook their customers.
- Dont forget to evaluate membership sites you unsubscribed from. What did they do wrong? Evaluate these factors too, so you don't repeat them in you subscription plan.
- Check out marketing tactics of popular membership sites. What added strategies are they implementing. Like “Talk with an expert for free”. Or get a free tutorial on an industry-related subject.
Check out this post. It's the startup guide to selling memberships. You'll need to follow the steps given there to start your subscription system.
3) Don't make things one-sided. Get customers to interact and take action.
Your site shouldn't be a place where you do all the talking and you customers just listen to you going on and on. Now the most common idea that strikes anyone when you tell them to interact with a customer, is to create a forum. Forums are great, but only if you've got a technical support personnel to help you manage it. On your own you really won't find the time.
- If you're managing things on your own, you could engage your customers in a comment. You can begin by sharing a a video relating to your industry with all your subscribers. Comment on it. Don't be generic or held back. You can be polite agree or disagree with what is being said and automatically get customers to respond.
- You can get your customers to debate about something and allow them to discuss with each other. This wont put you on the spot of having to keep answering questions in a forum.
4) It is NOT wrong to raise your prices after a while.
If you notice your product has seen some good response, don't be scared to raise the prices. Customers are judgers of costs. Price it too high and they'll wonder if they really need your service even if it's really good. Price it too low and they'll write you off for a below average product or service.
- Try out different test prices on your customers. Set up a clear value proposition of the services you offer and for what price. Let's say you're selling an online spanish course and you give your customers an assignment to complete after every class that will speed up the learning process.
- Now if your classes are cheap, your customer won't be motivated to follow up on the assignments you're setting. If your classes are little expensive, only customers who are really really interested will opt for it. They'll be motivated to complete tasks. This way they'll feel they're getting the best out of their subscription with you. You'll be able to add value to their subscription with you.
You should check out this post on how to get your first 100 customers to sign up for a paid membership.
5) Money will flow in when it first flows out......of your pocket
There's just spending and there's investment. You investing in the right membership plugin to manage your membership plans is an investment. You're putting in a little money to get something that is going to help you earn a profit. To see money coming in you need to spend from your pocket.
- Spend money on building resources that will acquire traffic. You can optimize your site all you want, and that is a necessity no doubt. But you will have to spend on specially targeted keywords potential customer are bound to search for. You have to spend a considerable amount on ads. These are not the only way to go. But they are known to be successful.
- Spend money creating videos and good informative resources. Resources like this will address customer's pain points and improve their engagement with you.
If money is however an issue for you, you can use our free tool Axis Subscriptions to start your subscription and membership service. This membership plugin works on Wordpress and will help you set up everything you need for you membership website.