Among the popular ways to monetize a website is by selling content from the site. This technique is ideal for content creators who want to offer exclusive content through a membership system.
Membership plugins for WordPress, like BuddyPress Plugin and WordPress Community Plugin, allow you to place content behind a paywall and manage the member. It will restrict access to paying customers only, which is good for the website owner.
Though, this type of WordPress plugin can do more than just restrict content and ensure payment. Regarding your type of content, you can place some courses, discount codes, and much more.
Unfortunately, with so many membership plugins across the internet, you may get struggle to find what is the best according to your need and, importantly, your budget.
Key features: Management tool, rich of social functions, custom options, and support various plugin
Every website needs a community for many reasons, and managing a member of a community is not that easy. After encouraging a visitor into a member, the next step is to manage them at all costs. By that, having a WordPress Community Plugin is a necessity for every membership site.
Youzify, formerly known as Youzer WordPress plugin, brings a massive solution for this matter since it is packed with a powerful admin panel, advanced widgets, front-end setting, responsive design, and customizable. All these features are available for free!
It’s also compatible with other community plugins such as WooCommerce, BBpress, BuddyPress Plugin, WordPress Community Plugin, and others. Packed with some wonderful features and tools, you will have the most powerful solution for membership management with an advanced security system.
Key features: Content dripping, customizable membership, and store integration
You just cannot exclude WooCommerce when you talking about membership plugins or WordPress Community Plugin. It’s a popular WordPress plugin thanks to the WooCommerce platform that is used by many online stores.
WooCommerce Memberships offers the most advanced function for membership tools, especially for restriction. Along with content dripping, you are allowed to create a plan according to your preference: be it weekly, monthly, even every year.
All of those features will give your customer a better value and experience, while also boosting your credibility along the process. What’s more, you can set the content only for the member before you planning to offer it to the public.
Apart from the price, all features and functions that are being offered by WooCommerce Memberships will give you better management for the membership plan.
Key features: PayPal integration, downloadable file, and audio
It’s the most recommended membership plugins out there besides BuddyPress Plugin and WordPress Community Plugin. All basic tool that needed to manage a membership is already in, including recurring subscription and content restriction. S2Member Framework is even allowing you to manage user roles.
The best thing about this plugin is the ability to sell any downloadable items like files, audio, eBook, courses, etc. You can custom the setting using a simple code inside the plugin.
S2Member Framework is also equipped with a marketing template and registration page. Even you can have more features for $89 as the cost for a single-time license. Here you are allowed to integrate some payment tools such as PayPal, Stripe, ClickBank, and others.
Though, a free S2Member Framework is all that you need to build a membership program on your site. After all, nothing is wrong with trying this powerful WordPress plugin.
Key features: WordPress control page, content dripping, and unlimited membership
Restrict User Access is among the most downloadable WordPress membership plugin nowadays along with BuddyPress Plugin. It has some advantages compared to a similar plugin which is known for its versatility.
By using this WordPress plugin, you are allowed to create an access level for unlimited users and put an unauthorized user to a custom link. Here, you have a chance to give a custom message to tease the non-member to encourage subscription.
Perhaps the most notable feature from Restrict User Access is that you can publish premium content periodically only for the member, along with membership duration.
What’s more, this WordPress plugin supports custom posts, including their taxonomies. Or, you may combine this plugin with other popular plugins like BuddyPress Plugin and WordPress Community Plugins. While the plugin is available for free, you can expand its feature and function begin at $27/year.
Key features: Memberlite template, free add-on, and support for unlimited website
Regarding the price which is considered as one the most expensive for a single license compared to BuddyPress Plugin and other WordPress Community Plugin, Paid Memberships Pro plugin offers the most complete functions and features for membership management.
The basic function is to restrict content in various types and giving a sneak peek to attract more subscriptions. Through its setting page, you can create a membership level with a certain price for a certain level. It’s also child-friendly since parents can link the account and manage it.
There is also an automated payment reminder and other excellent features which will help you to manage the member once for all. Paid Memberships Pro also provides a wide range of payment platforms, from offline methods like checks to online methods using a familiar service provider.
The extraordinary thing about this WordPress plugin is that you can get a report in the form of sales and revenue which may help you to create a better plan and decision.
Key features: Content archive, and custom options
What makes WishList Member remains at the top of the competition next to BuddyPress Plugin is their membership management system which is considered as the excellent one. It gives you total control for the membership level from a single WordPress plugin.
Besides you have the option to restrict all types of files, you also have a chance to create a specific promotion for targeted members and automate all orders using the available tools. Here you can archive your content so the members can access it for their privilege.
Overall, using WishList Member will make it easy to integrate the payment system, marketing tools, page builders, membership management, custom notification, etc.
Unfortunately, no answer is fits into this question. It depends on your goal, your recent website performance, and your type of content.
For a brand-new website with low traffic and budget, using a free membership plugin like BuddyPress and Youzify Plugin is highly recommended. On the other side, a high-traffic website is suggested to use a premium membership plugin because it has more complete functions and rich features to handle the huge number of members.