50 Tips for Starting and Marketing a Membership Site


  1. Use a CMS (content management system) – Don’t do it by hand, unless you are HTML proficient. Trying to manage a membership site by hand is incredibly difficult.
  2. Do your market research. Look for unsolved problems or sub-niches that nobody else is addressing. Don’t do a membership site that’s the same as another established site on the market.
  3. Have a launch budget. It’s easy to accidentally spend way more money than you planned to if you don’t budget carefully.
  4. Do a test buy with a real credit card. Make sure your shopping cart is properly integrated with your membership site software.


  1. Try buying banner ads on related websites. Look for sites that your target market would browse and post ads on them.
  2. Have a SEOed site that feeds into your membership site. Most membership sites block their content from search engines, so make sure you do have a content based site that search engines can see.
  3. Get someone on Odesk to configure a WordPress multi-site for you or consider using a plugin like ManageWP. If you’re using WordPress and you own multiple sites, a multisite will allow you to control all your sites from one control panel.


  1. Try out PPC traffic. Once you have a few sales and have a proven funnel, use PPC traffic to drive new people to your sales page.
  2. Contact others in the industry to do JVs. Get them to promote your membership site.


  1. Offer an affiliate program that pays out every month. Alternatively, you can offer an upfront payment for their subscription. For example, for a $40 a month membership program, you can pay out $100 upfront for that subscriber.
  2. Give a lot of free content away. Don’t make the mistake of thinking your best content has to be reserved only for your free membership site. Free content helps build credibility.
  3. Recycle old content for SEO. Any content that you don’t use anymore, put it up for free.
  4. Don’t sell your membership right upfront. Instead, collect an email and let people get to know you before asking them for their money.
  5. Split test different price points. Don’t just assume you know the best amount to charge.
  6. Don’t be attached to high prices. Sometimes you’ll make more with a $7 a month membership program than a $20 one, because so many more people will sign up.
  7. Split test different delivery models. For example, if you do audios, try a $40 a month subscription where you actually send them CDs, as well as a $15 a month program where they just download the MP3s.



  1. Avoid open archives. Don’t let existing members have access to all your old content, or people will just wait to sign up so they can get more content when they sign up.
  2. Followup, followup, followup. If you don’t make the sale the first time, keep adding value and keep asking for the sale.
  3. Sell your specific month’s content each month. If you’re doing a download this month about “The 5 Top Running Mistakes People Make,” then do an email blast talking about how harmful these problems are and talk up this month’s program. Often time’s people won’t necessarily want to be on your subscription in general, but might sign up just so they can get this month’s program – And end up staying on.
  4. Give them a free trial. This often helps enrolment.
  5. Package it with a product. If you sell a $47 product, why not throw in a month or two to your subscription for free? If they don’t cancel, they’ll get billed, but make sure this is very clear in your marketing materials.
  6. Have more than one front end product. The more products you have feeding into your membership program, the more members you’ll have.
  7. Make it seem like an off hand add-on. Try selling your program hard, as well as try just mentioning it very briefly at the end of the salesletter.
  8. Deliver incredible content. This is really the best way to keep people subscribed.
  9. Vary your content so people don’t get bored.
  10. Give an unexpected bonus around the 3 month mark. Many marketers see a sharp dropoff at the three month mark. Giving an unexpected bonus can help keep people who’re on the fence on your program. 


  1. Time monthly content with product launches. If you’re launching a product on “How to Increase Your Productivity,” this month’s content might be about “7 Productivity Tricks.” The buzz from your membership can help promote your launch.
  2. Do a content piece on a hot topic for your members.
  3. Use real world examples. People love hearing how people did things in the real world.
  4. Build your credibility through other avenues, like speaking and writing. This helps increase your conversions and your retention through increased name recognition. 


  1. Have a higher end tier. Don’t just charge one price for your membership program.
  2. Think twice before starting a member forum. It’s very hard to populate a forum.
  3. Get it launched. Don’t spend ages getting it perfect. You can launch with just a simple autoresponder drip feed system. 


  1. Ask your customers for feedback. Ask them how you can improve the program, or what content they’d like you to offer.


  1. Launch with a good amount of content. People shouldn’t feel disappointed when they first see your member’s area.
  2. Your member area should be well designed. Just because it’s not part of your main site doesn’t mean you can skimp on design. Remember: Paying members can cancel any time.
  3. Promise small and over deliver, rather than over promise and under deliver.
  4. Have a few months of backup content. This helps prevent dropped balls and missed content dates.
  5. Stay ahead of your earliest member. If you have a member that’s been around for 1 years and 2 months, you better have autoresponder content for at least 1 year and 2 months.
  6. Get a top notch copywriter to write your salesletter. It makes a big difference.
  7. Include a welcome package. Give people a ton of value the moment they join your program
  8. Give them discounts on your other products. This increases the value of the membership, as well as helps sell other products.
  9. Test a sales video. They often out convert pure text salesletters. 



  1. Have members only contests. This builds a lot of buzz and excitement.
  2. Give surprise bonuses and content as often as you can.
  3. Get people from your offline network on your membership program. Send anyone who expresses curiosity about it to your site.
  4. Consider getting your program on Clickbank. A lot of affiliates use Clickbank as a resource for finding affiliate programs to promote. 


  1. If you’re shipping CDs, make sure you get the CDs to fulfillment as early as possible. The time between getting them to audio and them being ready to shop can be longer than you think.
  2. Every once in a while, do something that focuses on you rather than your audience. For example, your background story or your personal thoughts and tips.
  3. Use a service like CloudFlare to ensure the uptime of your membership site. Among other features, CloudFlare will jump in anytime your site goes down to make sure your users can still access an archived version of your site. 


How to Boost Your Conversion Checklist

websiteWhen it comes to online business, many people are always concerned about getting more traffic and a bigger list. But did you know there are many things you can do to start earning more money without any extra traffic or subscribers? This handy conversion checklist will help make sure more of your prospects say YES to your product offers.


 Website Layout


  • Keep Design Simple: The more information, ads, bells and whistles you display, the less likely your reader is to take action. Keep them focused on one topic and a specific conversion goal at one time. As much as possible, keep the items on each page relevant to the actual topic of that page. This generally means keeping a tidy side bar or not having one at all. For sales pages, you may find your best choice is to remove sidebars.


  • White Space: Give a generous portion of your web design to nothing at all…white space. Having a clean design and plenty of space in margins makes it much easier for readers to concentrate on your content and sales message and content.


  • Limit Navigation: It’s natural instinct to want to showcase all our great content and information, but excessive navigation simply causes confusion and lack of action. If necessary, use sub-categories to eliminate the need for large and complex navigation systems. If you are trying to create navigation that makes it easy for search engine spiders to make their way through your content, use a site map or place the more complex navigation at the bottom of the page, where it doesn’t serve as a distraction for your visitor.


  • Limit Outside Links: If you’re blogging and sharing content, that’s one thing. But if you’re trying to convince a prospect to purchase a product, don’t send your traffic away and avoid linking to outside pages.


  • Keep it On One Page: While some may abhor the 1-page sales letter, it is placed on 1 page for a reason and that’s reader retention. The more you ask your reader to click through or navigate through multiple pages for more information, the more likely they might just click away altogether.




  • Use attention-getting, benefit-driven headlines: What is the one thing your prospect really wants from your product? Highlight that in your big, bold headline.


  • Subheadlines: Break up your copy further by using bolded subheadlines to show separate sub-sections of your sales page. It makes it easier to read and can grab the attention of someone who is scanning and about to leave your page.


  • Bullet points: Bullet points are also your copy’s best friend. Bullet points are easy to scan and read. Use bullet points to tap into the pain your prospect may be facing, illustrate benefits and more.


  • Write directly to your audience: When writing copy for a sales page, email or anyone else, imagine your ideal prospect on the other side of the screen. Say “you” and focus on your reader more than yourself. We all know Internet users have a short attention span, so it stands to reason, if you’re talking about yourself…they will just tune out. But if you’re talking to them and about them, they’re more apt to listen.


  • Know and continue to learn about your target: Even though we think we have a good understanding of our target market, there is always so much more to learn. Keep studying them, asking them question and tracking subjects and products of interest to them to grow your knowledge.


  • Include enough information to make a purchase decision: Sometimes we might worry about copy being too long, but it’s not length that’s important. It’s about providing enough information on your sales page that fully illustrates the benefits of the product, answers many of the frequently asked questions and even overcomes many of your prospect’s objections. Don’t be wordy as that’s not necessary…be useful and complete.


  • Be casual: Obviously, there may be some markets where a casual approach is inappropriate, but you’ll generally find that if you write how you speak, you can connect with your audience effectively. Avoid jargon in most cases and speak in plain old simple English.


  • Short, non-complex sentences, short paragraphs: Just as you want to avoid jargon, you want to keep your sentences simple and break up your paragraphs as well. Short chunks of text are easier to read, scan and grab the attention of your visitor.


  • Transitions: Keep your visitor reading through your sales page by including transitions between paragraphs and sections of your page.


Some examples of transitions:


  • And most importantly…
  • As you may already know…
  • As you may have noticed…
  • Aside from that, one thing’s for sure…
  • Bottom line is…
  • Here’s exactly why…
  • I’ll let you in on a little secret…
  • I’m sure you’ll understand…
  • In fact…
  • Just imagine…
  • Let me ask you this…
  • Let me explain…
  • The next step is…
  • Today, more than ever…
  • To prove it, here’s…
  • You’re gonna love this…
  • Power Words: Power words are part of an emotionally-charged language that is used to influence your reader. People react and buy with emotion, and these are words that help elicit emotion. They are often action words and create a mental picture for your reader.


Power words can be used everywhere in your copy. Here are a few examples:
  • action-oriented
  • advanced
  • all-in-one
  • amazing
  • breakthrough
  • complete
  • easy to understand
  • free
  • important
  • improved
  • latest
  • limited
  • low-cost
  • no strings attached
  • on demand
  • proven
  • responsive
  • save
  • time-tested
  • transform


  • Style Matters: Use selective bolding, italicization, etc to make text stand out. Strategically place images and wrap text so that they not only look aesthetically pleasing, but also draw the eye in and make it easier to read the text.




  • Images: Use images to illustrate products. If they are virtual products, create virtual cover images or use other images that illustrate the benefits of the product. Images can create visual appeal, draw the eye in at key points of your copy and more.


  • Video: Whether it’s a slide show presentation, demonstration or you talking to the camera, video is everywhere. It can demonstrate things text can’t and can also create a more personal connection with your visitor who can see you as a flesh and blood person. If you’re using it with sales copy, test different lengths, but you’ll likely do well with a short introductory video that gets your visitor interested in learning more about the product.


  • Audio: Audio can also provide an introduction and create familiarity with your audience. Try a short introductory audio recording that invites your reader to learn more about your product.


analyzeTesting & Tracking


  • Track Your Links: Always track your advertising, email marketing and other links to your sales pages. Learn what works and what doesn’t…and do more of what does.


  • Split Test Your Sales Pages: Use split-testing software that allows you to test different elements of your sales page including headlines, offers, price and more.


  • Split Test Emails: Many autoresponder services come with split-testing capabilities as well. Test different offers and products with segments of your list.


  • Review Stats Regularly: Check your website statistics to see what pages people are viewing, where they are coming from and where they are navigating to. Review your link tracking statistics and results of your split test and adjust accordingly.


Ever wondered how to homeschool 3 kids, take care of twin babies, manage the household, and run a full time business all at the same time? I have news for you. You can’t! At least not alone. Almost a year ago I joined an internet marketing membership site called StomperNet. Since then I have learned some important things about running an internet business.

1. You should be working ON your business and not IN your business.
2. Do you have a J-O-B or a business?
3. Is your business an asset that can be sold?
4. Don’t forget the most important thing: Spending time with Family.
5. Your income is the average of the people you hang out the most with.

Number One: This was me about 6 months ago. In between processing orders, answering the phones, and updating the websites to delete discontinued products, there was no time left to actual work on the business. I was so involved in the every day activities in became impossible to actually grow the business to the next level. Solution: Get out of the house and get an office. Hire a Manager. Train manager to do everything I do so that she can supervise all the other people I will hire. Second step: Hire a webmaster. Third: Hire link getters. Fourth: Hire someone to work on product updates and uploading new products to sites. Fifth Step: Outsource everything else and then train manager on anything I am still doing. Granted, these five steps took six months. It takes time to train people. But once you do, you can actually start working ON your business and not IN your business. It obviously also takes cash flow. You don’t want to go into debt to pay salaries, but you have to look at things ojectively. If I can pay someone $7 an hour to answer the phone, and I choose to answer the phone instead, then I am making $7 an hour! My job is not to answer the phone for $7 an hour! My job is to work on Traffic, Conversion, and Community.

Number Two. Do you have a J-O-B or a business? Do you HAVE to get up everyday and go to work or everything will fall apart? If so, then you have created a Job for yourself. Part of the beauty of being an entrepreneur is that you have FREEDOM to go and do whatever you want, whenever you want. If I want to take the kids to the park, I CAN…. because I have a business, not a J-O-B. You need to create systems and policies and procedures so that your office can run itself. If YOU are the center of every decision, then you have a job.

Number Three. Is your business an asset that can be sold? If every day you have to work 16 hours just to keep the business running, then you don’t have an asset that can be sold. You have a nightmere! If someone offered to buy your business tomorrow, do you have the systems in place for someone to come in and take over? It is as old fashioned as creating step by step flow charts for your workers using a program such as SmartDraw so that everything can be run without you. It takes time to think out and plan the flow charts, but once in place, everyone will know what to do and how to do it. Keeping good books is also important. No one is going to want to buy debt. Make sure to pay the sales tax you collect on time to the respective states and be sure to only go into debt for inventory and office furniture. Don’t bank on tomorrow’s income to pay today’s salaries.

Number Four. Remember why you quit your job! You quit your day job to be an entrepreneur so you could have the convenience of working from home and spending time with your family. Nothing is more important than the kids. If you don’t get that project finished, so what? Who is going to fire you? Your kids however, are only little once and they WILL remember that mommy or daddy put them first before their work.

Number Five. Brad Fallon said this at one of the live conferences. Your income is the average of the people you hang around. How true is that. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and go out and meet people in a higher income bracket. It is not about the money. It is not about what THEY can do for YOU. It is about what you can learn from THEM. It is about the tips and advice you can think about and apply to your business. It is about expanding your horizons and seeing things from someone else’s point of view. Maybe spending $30 a month on pay per click ads is a huge deal to you. Wait till you meet someone who is spending thousands of dollars a DAY! Then ASK them for some tips! Believe it or not, people usually like to talk about themselves! They like to talk about their experiences and the their successes. Be genuinely interested in other people and don’t forget to help out those that are learning!