Membership Sites- What's better, single option paid membership or multiple options?

by Peter Helps 15 replies
I have a quick question. This question is for those who have a membership site and have tested this strategy.

When creating a membership site, is it better to have a single option for the paid portion of the membership site or have multiple paid levels? What I mean by that is the following membership site structure:

Free portion:

Free trial membership- let's say for 7 or 30 days (depends on testing and would love to hear your comments on that)

Paid portion: Which is better?:

Single paid membership level or

Multiple levels:
silver level
Gold Level
Platinum level

Thanks guys,

Peter
#main internet marketing discussion forum #membership #multiple #option #options #paid #single #sites
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  • There's another model you can consider -- a free membership without a time limit, then upsells to more and more targeted information and support. Rather than limiting the time someone can view basic content for free, keep 'em coming back for more until they're sold on your upsells.

    You can use a discussion forum for the free membership. Other members can deliver content that you don't have to supply.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tuzic
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    Hi,

    To earn more revenue you can do free trials too for the paid memberships services & features they would recieve from this package.

    You could also allow them to upgrade from free to the paid memberships, you could also have a period of 7 days free then pay half price for the next period...& so on. but they really do work.
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    • Profile picture of the author Peter Helps
      Those are some great ideas. Thanks Vince and Tuzic.

      I think a lot of it depends on the type of membership site as well, don't you think?

      I'm looking at moer of a high end membership site. I guess it will all come down to testing.

      Peter
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      • Profile picture of the author drr
        Yes, the type of niche certainly plays a role in determining the type of memberships you should offer.

        Personally, I use free & premium levels and that works pretty well. It's also good for recruiting affiliates, because you can let affiliates give away free memberships and get paid for anyone that upgrades to paid.
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  • Profile picture of the author ttippmann
    People love options of course
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    • Profile picture of the author Amy Bass
      I would say, try and have at least 2 different options. People like to choose what they are getting. Maybe some don't need all the bells and whistles, let them pay less. Let the people who want more have a higher end option.
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    • Profile picture of the author jjpmarketing
      Just because people love options doesn't mean it will convert well. You have to think about what will convert the best.

      If you are doing a video site, you can go 2 routes. Free trial for 7 days with unlimited access to content. Or you can do free memberships with the entry level videos, leaving the core content on the backend of the offer.
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      • Profile picture of the author David-JP
        I think three at most is the best, and if theres one you think is best- you should say it.

        Silver
        Gold
        Platinum- Best Value!

        I like monthly vs yearly payment options too, a good % will take the yearly if you give em a good deal.
        Monthly $29.95
        Yearly $297.95 (Over 20% off!!)

        Haven't tested that vs get extra months free, but should

        David
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        • Profile picture of the author freudianslip27
          Yeah, like David said don't underestimate the power of that yearly option with the discount. It's pretty cool when you get people to commit to that, you know they'll be around for a while

          also, you might want to consider the advantage of having an initial surge of people to fill in your membership site initially. If you have a private forum and whatnot, and very few members, it can get pretty lonely in there, and it can lead people to leave.

          Matt
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          • Profile picture of the author Simplweb
            I am actually going to come at your question from a completely different direction.....

            Consider two things:

            1. You will spend 20% of your time/effort implementing 80% of the features you want on your website. Its the last part that is the hardest
            2. You NEVER really know what people want. You think you might be absolutely certain, but then split testing and feedback upends your assumptions

            So the answer to your question is "do whatever your chosen membership solution can do reliably and easily".

            Its more important to launch than to get everything perfect. An online business is an organic thing and needs to evolve. Get started, and throw stuff at the wall over time and see what sticks. Your customers will tell YOU want they want, not the other way around.
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            • Profile picture of the author Peter Helps
              Originally Posted by Simplweb View Post

              I am actually going to come at your question from a completely different direction.....

              Consider two things:

              1. You will spend 20% of your time/effort implementing 80% of the features you want on your website. Its the last part that is the hardest
              2. You NEVER really know what people want. You think you might be absolutely certain, but then split testing and feedback upends your assumptions

              So the answer to your question is "do whatever your chosen membership solution can do reliably and easily".

              Its more important to launch than to get everything perfect. An online business is an organic thing and needs to evolve. Get started, and throw stuff at the wall over time and see what sticks. Your customers will tell YOU want they want, not the other way around.
              That is a great point SImplweb. The good old principle of 80/20 rule. I always try to ask my members what they want through various media, surveys, blog posts, etc. I appreciate your comments and thanks for responding back to my pm.

              Peter
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      • Profile picture of the author Peter Helps
        Originally Posted by jjpmarketing View Post

        Just because people love options doesn't mean it will convert well. You have to think about what will convert the best.

        If you are doing a video site, you can go 2 routes. Free trial for 7 days with unlimited access to content. Or you can do free memberships with the entry level videos, leaving the core content on the backend of the offer.
        Thanks JJP. I was thinking about offering a free level with entry level videos. I think that's a great idea. If I can show my subscribers that the stuff I'm showing them for free is great, then I think I'll have a better chance at converting them to paying customers.

        Peter
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  • Profile picture of the author rehuxley
    There is another advantage of having a multi-tier level membership site, with the first being free: List building. To get the free level, they have to give their email address and perhaps get a bonus ebook, video or report. Now you have them to market to regardless of them buying into the premium level or can help to induce them to buy the premium level.
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    • Profile picture of the author jjpmarketing
      Originally Posted by rehuxley View Post

      There is another advantage of having a multi-tier level membership site, with the first being free: List building. To get the free level, they have to give their email address and perhaps get a bonus ebook, video or report. Now you have them to market to regardless of them buying into the premium level or can help to induce them to buy the premium level.
      I hadn't really thought about that. This is very true. I might have to add a free element to my membership site when it launches.
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      • Profile picture of the author rmholla
        There is no ONE BEST answer. Everything will depend on the type of membership site you are starting.

        Some membership sites are pay once for lifetime access (say a private forum).

        Others require yearly memberships and you pay one price at the beginning.

        Then there are all different types of hybrid membership sites where there are levels and different options a member can pick and choose.

        Another option is to require a registration fee of say $47 and then a lower monthly fee. If the person leaves they have to pay another registration fee to get back in. This really helps retain members.

        Good luck!


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