When blogs started to mushroom out of nowhere in the virtual space, saturating it with every content possible, it was no surprise that it resulted in keen competition among bloggers in terms of advertising and marketing strategies. To stand out, one should think of novel yet effective ways to monetize his blog. Ideally, it must be a business model that allows you to leverage your time, content, and other resources, while providing you a steady stream of passive income.
One of the proven business models that allows you to gain those desired results is building a membership site. Why is a membership program so effective in growing a blog’s fanbase? Should you consider starting one as well? If yes, how can installing a useful restrict content WordPress plugin on your site help you get started? How can you choose the best one for your blog? And what are some of the top restrict content plugins for WordPress sites out there? We’ll answer all these questions in this article.
What is a Membership Site?
Membership sites take this business model from the membership programs that traditional businesses do offline. You’re right about gym membership if that’s the first thing that came to your mind. By signing up for gym membership, you get complete access to a fitness club’s services and facilities. Of course, these include their exercise equipment, facilities such as swimming pool, and professional coaching services.
Aside from all those primary benefits, you’re paying for, you also gain external motivation from other members who share the same goals as yours. Knowing that you’re not the only person who’s trying to lose that excess weight and jumpstart a more active, healthier lifestyle, you instantly gain a support system. And knowing the success stories behind those well-sculpted, fit bodies, you gain sources of inspiration that encourage you to sweat those stubborn fats out even more.
Now, there’s no question as to why a gym membership program is a useful business model in the traditional fitness industry. People like belonging to a tribe they can relate to. They love going to a one-stop place where they can learn precisely how they can achieve their health and fitness goals and make it happen right at the same place. They want to find a new source of inspiration when they feel like their motivation slides.
But, is the same level of effectiveness true to membership sites that are growing in popularity these days? It is a resounding, yes. In fact, a lot of content creators have been gaining a steady stream of passive income from the sign-ups and subscriptions to their membership programs. Along with that, their blog’s fanbase grows, too.
Membership Program Strengthens Your Brand Authority
While increasing your revenue is one of the obvious benefits of starting a membership program, it’s just the tip of the iceberg. But what propels the growth of your income is a set of other more enduring benefits that makes a membership site thrive.
For example, a membership program strengthens your brand authority. When people see that many other individuals are signing up to get access to your content, it gives them the impression that you must be an expert on this niche that people turn to you for help. They’re willing to pay for it, even if that means paying a fixed rate for a monthly subscription.
Similar to the gym membership example above, a membership site can help foster relationships since you’re building a virtual community where members share common interests, struggles, and goals. Think of an actual six months workshop where attendees start forming new friendships and are enjoying each other’s company.
By putting a gate around your content and providing access only to individuals who are interested enough, you’re actually adding value to it. It is a subtle way of saying that your content is priced because it provides real value to those who need it, and it’s only available to those who are serious enough to learn something from your insights and apply what they learn in real life.
When people pay for particular content, chances are they’re more than ready to hit the ground running to apply what they learned from the content they’ve consumed. The more they’re seeing positive results, the more they know the effectiveness of the insights you’ve shared. And that’s a gradual yet successful way of building your credibility among your target audience. Now, this can reel in more people to your site. As a result, your fanbase will grow.
Get Started by Installing an Ideal Restrict Content Plugin
So, you’re thinking of creating your own membership program? That’s a great idea, especially if you’ve been blogging for years already. If you publish a consistent stream of high-quality content that your readers love, consistently connect with your readers via email and social media, that only means you’ve already started laying the groundwork for a membership program.
Your loyal readers have already tested the waters, so to speak. You’ve reached that point when you’ve fostered trust between you and your readers. And so, since you’ve already proven the worth of your content, they will be willing to invest in it. As your site grows and attracts more visitors, a membership program will also help you sift through the amount of traffic on your website, the ones who are loyal readers. This can curb your site’s bounce rate.
Building a membership site from scratch can consume much time. It can be done if that’s what you prefer, but there’s a more natural way to work around this, and you can even incorporate that on your existing website. One of the tools you can tap on is plugins. Specifically, plugins for restricting content can be helpful.
As its name implies, you can build a gate around your content with a restricted content plugin. While that’s a general idea, it provides different uses and purposes, too. Basically, you can limit your content from non-members of a subscription plan. But you can also do that to avoid plagiarism or copyright breach. You can choose among the best restrict content WordPress plugins with various features depending on what purpose you plan to use it for.
The Best Restrict Content Plugins
Before installing a plugin for restricting content, ask yourself: What purpose am I installing it for? What features do I need to fulfill this purpose? How much is the budget entailed for the features I need? You can install most plugins for free, and they come with basic features. But if you want to utilize some premium features, the developers may require you to pay for a subscription fee.
Below are some examples of the best restrict content plugins for WordPress sites.
Advanced Access Manager
Advanced Access Manager lives by its name—it enables you to oversee, control, and manage every nook and cranny of your website in the most detailed way possible that the features allow. This robust and versatile plugin has won the trust of over 100,000 website owners worldwide. And it’s not hard to see why.
Most of the features are free and easy to utilize. Through this plugin, website owners can easily create and customize user roles and capabilities. It enables you to define the type of access you allow for each user, site member, or visitor. Content access control covers both the backend and frontend aspects of your website. It allows you to control access to an unlimited number of posts, pages, and custom post types.
The plugin is pretty transparent and straightforward in the sense that it will only encourage you to purchase specific premium features when needed. It will point out only the particular add-ons that you need to fulfill a particular function or purpose that’s not covered by the free features.
It also has an Access Denied Redirect feature that you can customize for any role, site member, or visitor. For your membership site, you can take advantage of this feature by redirecting the user to a page or post that provides detailed steps on how they can access the restricted content on your site. One example is by encouraging them to subscribe to your newsletter, e-book, webinar, or online course and providing instructions on how they can do that.
Membership & Content Restriction – Paid Member Subscriptions
Paid Member Subscriptions is a plugin that’s not only designed to help you manage and control access to some of your posts, pages or portions to any of these. It also enables the seamless creation and management of a membership program right on your existing website. With this plugin, a website owner can accept member payments, create subscription plans, and restrict access to premium content.
I’ll show you how easy it is to start a membership and subscription program without breaking a sweat. This plugin simply allows you to create a new page, give it a name that indicates the nature and purpose of your program, add the ‘pms-register’ shortcode, publish it, and your site is up to gather new members to your tribe.
Depending on your site rules and policies, you can provide access to content based on logged-in status or subscription plan. The plugin allows you to assign and customize such options. You can also conveniently design membership tiers and corresponding subscription plans to each of those levels. You can also reel in new members to your subscription plans by giving them a walkthrough of what they’ll likely experience as part of your tribe.
The plugin’s promotional tool enables you to do that by offering a free trial period. Remember how we were hooked to Adobe’s digital products? We first took advantage of that free trial period, and that’s how it all started. You can follow the same old strategy and see how it works.
Another great feature of this plugin is that it easily integrates with WooCommerce. You can restrict product viewing to non-members of your e-commerce store, utilizing that classic yet effective exclusivity marketing technique. It works the same, by the way—only serious buyers are given the opportunity to peruse your product pages. This minimizes the occurrence of bogus purchasers and joy reservers.
WordPress Membership Plugin – Restrict Content
Similar to Paid Member Subscriptions, Restrict Content is also a popular plugin that you can use to conveniently and efficiently build a membership site. It offers valuable tools and features to help you do that. For example, it lets you separate the public from private content, which can only be accessed by registered users. There’s also a feature that allows you to protect sensitive content on your site.
Those new users who have interest in becoming members of your website can seamlessly self-register through a page you can create with this plugin. You can choose to limit access to an entire page, post, or only to some of its portions. While these are only basic features and you may need to utilize some more tools, you can always upgrade to Restrict Content Pro anytime.
By upgrading to the pro version, you can unlock more ideal features that will help you grow your business. Some of the pro features include self-service account management and unlimited membership levels. It also provides payment processing support for various payment gateways such as PayPal, email marketing support, AffiliateWP integration, complete member management, discount code support, restrict access to WooCommerce products and more.
Secure Copy Content Protection
Plagiarism and copyright breach are some of the common problems confronting online content publishers. As a content creator, it’s hard brainstorming great ideas that can provide real value to your target readers. Translating these ideas to a well-thought, compelling piece is a tedious task, too. Thus, content creators will do all they can to protect their intellectual property rights, especially if they’re monetizing their content.
That said, Secure Copy Content Protection will indeed be a valuable plugin for your membership site. The central concept of this plugin is not only to limit access to non-members of your website. But also, to avoid the occurrence of plagiarism and copyright breach as visitors flock to your site.
It disables specific keys and developer tools that allow a user to copy the content from your website. With fewer chances of plagiarism and copyright breach committed against your site, there are higher chances of gaining a positive impact on your SEO.
Secure Copy Content Protection also allows you to block access to your content by locking it with a password. It requires users to enter a password on the designated field to view a post or section on your site. You can also allow individual members of your website to see a particular content without the need to enter a password.
Upgrading to the pro version of this plugin will enable you to block certain users by IP or country. It will also allow you to process payments for purchased content via PayPal.
Restrict User Access – Membership Plugin with Force
No coding required; this plugin gives you complete control over which content you decide to provide access to. It will also enable you to create an unlimited number of access tiers and assign role capabilities.
For each membership tier or subscription plan that you create, you will be able to limit access to your content with several conditions to choose from. For example, you can restrict access to each post, page, or custom post type. You can also restrict content written by a particular author on your site. Other conditions include page templates, post type archives, date archives, search results, languages, bbPress user profiles, and more.
The plugin also allows you to combine certain conditions in restricting your content. For example, you can limit access to all the articles of a particular author on a specific category. Then, provide access only when a member pays for a premium subscription.
It is capable to integrate with other useful plugins such as BuddyPress, Easy Digital Downloads, and WooCommerce. These make it one of the most ideal plugins for restricting content access. on your WordPress site.
Creating a membership program on your existing website is a great way to connect with like-minded individuals who value your content. It also strengthens your credibility, gradually paving the way for your brand to become an industry leader. It’s about time you brainstorm brilliant ideas to execute this strategy. Use the right tools. Choose the right to restrict content plugin to help you get started.