Justin Tadlock have written excellent tutorial how to run membership site. I’m using similar method in this site also. But my system have couple of downsides I’m not happy with.
- I needed to write extra plugin that give customer 6 months, 1 year or 2 years access to support forums after they purchase theme or plugin.
- My extra plugin wasn’t really that flexible and everything was “hard coded”. I mean there was no UI for settings.
- Private template was loaded from active theme so switching themes would not be that simple.
So why not build a plugin that takes care all membership related actions, and some more? Pippin Williamson have already build membership plugins for Easy Digital Downloads but they were not exactly what I was looking for.
Running Membership Sites using Easy Digital Downloads
By now you might have noticed that I’m talking about building add-on plugin for Easy Digital Downloads. Let me introduce EDD Members and it’s features.
- You can check any public post type content private. For example you can set all pages or all posts private at once.
- You can make singular post type content private. For example you can set only 10 of your posts private but all others are public for everyone.
- Users can see private content only if they have valid membership which is based on expire date. You can enable membership calculation in any of the download item you use in your shop.
- You can set membership length in the same time as you decide download item price. And you can set different membership lengths for variable prices also!
- In Downloads → Settings → Extensions you can set text for private content. You can set different text for logged in and logged out users.
- You can decide whether comments are private or not.
- EDD Members can send automatic renewal notice emails to users that their membership is about to expire. You can set time period when emails are sent. For example 2 days before and 1 week after expire date.
- You can modify expire date in users profile page.
- Delayed (drip) content rules using
[edd_members_drip]shortcode. This way you can release “drip content” or content that becomes available in sequence. For example after seven or twenty days after membership purchase. This is useful in lectures or reading assignments that are unveiled daily or weekly as you progress through the material.
What kind of sites EDD Members would be useful?
Any site that needs to have payment wall before user can see the content. Isn’t that the basic criteria for membership site:) I personally need this plugin for these type of sites.
- Online magazines where some of the content is private and only paying customers can see all the content.
- Tutorial sites where some of the content can be marked as private.
- Any WordPress theme or plugin site where you want to set support or documentation private.
- You tell me!
I’ll make a video also but here are screenshots where you can see the plugin in action.