I see lots of marketers telling everyone that membership sites are holy grail of making money online.

It makes sense…

you get recurring income every month.
you don’t have to keep launching products or pushing affiliate products.
you can grow it by adding members and making more every month.

But that’s the sizzle.

It’s all true, but it’s not the whole story.

I’ve owned a LOT of products and membership sites in my 6 years online.

And membership sites have great potential for sure, but it doesn’t always pan out.

Here’s why…

When you sell a product it’s a one-and-done sale and you pocket the money.
Sure there are some refunds but you still keep most of it.

With membership sites, customers are hesitant to signup for a monthly commitment.

So it’s a tougher sale upfront

but also, you usually need to offer a trial period so you may not see any money for up to 30 days.
(and some members will cancel before they get billed even 1 full price monthly payment.

The biggest issue with membership sites though, is retention.

How long will active members keep paying until they cancel?

On average, this is usually between 2-3 months for most products.

So some quick math…

If you can sell a membership for $27 per month with a free 30-day trial or a one-time product sale of $67, what’s better?

Well, the membership will make you on average $54 or less per member and the product makes you $67.

So the product is better…

UNLESS you take the time to optimize your membership site.

Monitor stats.
Tweak conversions.
Optimize retention.
Add value.

Then over time the membership site can be worth a lot more.

But the quick hitter for making money will always be the product sale.

Do your homework before you decide what way to go.

Make it happen,

P.S. Agree or disagree? SHARE your comment then SHARE this post…

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2 Responses to The TRUTH About Membership Sites

  1. Milena says:

    I also think that the one-off sale of products is better.
    It is true for hesitating to register for a monthly subscription.
    Many marketers, however, use it as a hope for recurring income.

  2. Cathy says:

    A one-off sale is good if you only create one product at a time but if you have the drive to create a series of products that are high quality, products that people want to buy, then a membership site is the best option.

    Customer retention for membership sites can usually be achieved by giving your customer 2 things – good quality/unique products and consistency.

    I’ve been a customer of a number of membership sites. Most sites simply offer the same products, usually PLR products, to their customers. Why would I stay with their membership site when I can get the same products by joining another site that have the same or higher quality products? Some membership sites even charge a fee for products that you can obtain on the net for free.

    I’ve been a member of 1 site for 4 years now. They have software created and include PLR products that other’s sell. I stay with them because the software is useful in my own business. Another reason is that they have been consistent over these years. They have kept the price stable and they have not “mucked around” with their offering.

    I was a member of another site. He offered good products but after a few months he wanted to put the price up. Instead of raising the price he decided to cancel the current membership and another one was started. If you joined that membership, he decided to change it either by price or offerings. See what I mean about consistency. If there are a number of changes people no longer trust you for future offers.

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