Member sites, or subscription membership sites, can be of many different kinds and take many different forms, but here we are discussing online subscription membership sites whereby members pay a monthly subscription for access to a website that offers them good information on the subject of interest. Known as a niche online, these topics can be covered in very great depth or be designed more as sales sites, offering products that are related to the niche in question.
The vast majority of online member sites are a combination of each, offering useful information and also products that might be of benefit to members. The information is generally added to monthly, and products changed as newer products come online. The most popular subscription websites are those that are updated regularly, offering more detailed and enduring information than a blog generally does conservative news sites,
There is generally no lack of new products on the internet – the secret is to offer ‘good’ new products that are of some use to the majority of members along with the occasional products that is of more specialist nature and of benefit to a few members. One of the secrets of popular and profitable membership site is to cater for everybody – all members, not only the majority.
Why Members Cancel
The main benefits of member sites, where your members pay you every calendar month, are fairly obvious. You get a guaranteed monthly income that increases with each member that joins. However, it also decreases with each member that leaves, and given that members pay because they are interested in the niche, you only have yourself to blame if they leave. You have not looked after them properly.
So what do you have to do to look after your members, and avoid them cancelling their subscriptions? First, be careful about your sales pitch – don’t offer what you cannot deliver. Don’t offer ‘three fresh articles monthly’ if you can only write two. It’s better to pay for the third to be written than fall down on your promise.
Don’t Be Too Confident
Don’t state superlatives, such as ‘the best’ or the ‘most interesting’ of all the member sites in the niche. People will use that as a reason to leave you, because no site can possible make such claims without visiting every other membership site on that niche online. Don’t offer anything you are not 100% certain of delivering. Subscription membership sites exist only as long as they have members, and if you get your members under false pretenses, word will get around the forums and your site will soon be dead.
Better to be conservative, and even charge slightly less than your competitors, than to overstate your capabilities. However, there are some things you should provide if you want to persuade people to sign up. All subscription membership sites should offer a degree of new content every month. If you joined any of the member sites online and found the same old stuff month after month you would likely cancel, wouldn’t you? So why should your members be any different?
Keep refreshing your content with new articles, fresh information or even use RSS to give news feeds on your niche if that’s relevant. If you have a webcam, sit in front of computer and give a monthly newscast yourself – who knows, they may look forward to that! Offer new products for sale. Let your subscription membership site be known as the place to be for news on all the best software and info-products on your niche on the net!
Finding the Latest Products
It sounds difficult, but it’s not. Join ClickBank, get a ClickBank nickname, and then check out all the new products that came on stream over the past month. Create hoplinks for them (ClickBank affiliate links) and offer them to your members each month on a ‘What’s New’ page. Check out the RSS feeds and news online twice monthly, and collect some new stuff published on your niche, and add that your member sites.
Finding the Latest News
Join Google Alerts and get alerts on new news about your niche to your email address. Do the same with Yahoo – there’s a great deal you can do to keep subscription membership sites topical, and there are many more topical news sites online than just these. It doesn’t take a genius to keep member sites up to date with topical information and fresh new products.
The beauty is, the longer subscription membership sites have been in existence, the more information the offer new members! You don’t delete anything unless the information or product is obsolete, but keep it in folders that your members can click to gain access. The longer that people have been running their member sites, the easier they find it to keep members.