A WordPress membership plugin is one of the easiest ways to add user-profiles and membership access to your WordPress website.
Installing one of these plugins can be one of the easiest ways to deliver several different methods of access to your site without having to do extensive site design modifications.
The Essential Features:
For any WordPress membership plugin to work effectively, it is important they have a few essential features:
- User account pages
- User only email support
- Member directories for backend development
- Front-end profiles for users
- Front-end registration access
- Easy Log in fields
- Drag and drop form builders for developers
- User role definitions for each level of access
- Content restriction redirects
- Developer friendly functions for sub memberships, pushing updates and more.
Why Install A Membership plugin?
Installing a WordPress membership plugin could be one of the best ways to improve traffic on your page as well as it many people involved in the process of signing up for your website.
Having exclusive content for members can help you to gather an extensive amount of user e-mails and it can ensure that you can always be prepared to offer exclusive content and discounts for your most valuable customers.
With multiple levels of access and easy integration into your current WordPress website, setting up multiple levels of membership or a sign in function on your site could actually be easier than you might think with a plugin.
The 7 Best WordPress Membership Plugins
Membership management is critical to websites that want to make money online. Without proper membership management, you will struggle to make the most of your website and your content. If you rely on WordPress for your website there are many great plugins that can help you with a variety of membership functions.
These will allow you to create an experience that is tailored around your members needs, and there are even some plugins out there that can be used across multiple sites. In this article, I’m going to list 7 of the best membership management plugins out there that you can use on your WordPress site today. Let’s get started.
Originally Published April 2018, updated Feb 28 2023
Total downloads: 300,000+
Five Star Ratings: 800+
ProfilePress (formerly WP User Avatar) is a lightweight membership plugin that lets you create beautiful user profiles, member directories and frontend user registration form, login form, password reset and editing profile information. It also allows you to protect sensitive content and control user access.
2. Ultimate Member
Total downloads: 200,000+
Five Star Ratings: 1,300+
A User Profile & Membership Plugin for WordPress.
The plugin makes it a breeze for users to sign-up and become members of your website.
The plugin allows you to add beautiful user profiles to your site and is perfect for creating advanced online communities and membership sites.
Lightweight and highly extendible, Ultimate Member will enable you to create almost any type of site where users can join and become members with absolute ease.
- Front-end user profiles
- Front-end user registration
- Front-end user login
- Custom form fields
- Conditional logic for form fields
- Drag and drop form builder
- User account page
- Custom user roles
- Member directories
- User emails
- Content restriction
- Conditional nav menus
- Show author posts & comments on user profiles
- Developer friendly with dozens of actions and filters
3. Members – Membership & User Role Editor Plugin
Total downloads: 200,000+
Five Star Ratings: 900+
Members is a roles and capabilities based WordPress membership plugin. It gives your users the ultimate member experience by giving you powerful tools to add roles and capabilities and assign them to your users.
Members allows you to set permissions to restrict content on your site by providing a simple user interface (UI) for WordPress’ powerful roles and capabilities system, which has traditionally only been available to developers who know how to code this by hand.
- Role Editor: Allows you to edit, create, and delete roles as well as capabilities for these roles.
- Multiple User Roles: Give one, two, or even more roles to any user.
- Explicitly Deny Capabilities: Deny specific caps to specific user roles.
- Clone Roles: Build a new role by cloning an existing role.
- Content Permissions: Gives you control over which users (by role) have access to post content.
- Shortcodes: Shortcodes to control who has access to content.
- Widgets: A login form widget and users widget to show in your theme’s sidebars.
- Private Site: You can make your site and its feed completely private if you want.
- Plugin Integration: Members is highly recommended by other WordPress developers. Many existing plugins integrate their custom roles and caps directly into it.
4. Paid Memberships Pro
Total downloads: 100,000+
Five Star Ratings: 560+
Paid Memberships Pro is designed for premium content sites, clubs/associations, subscription products, newsletters and more!
The plugin adds a new revenue source to your site and is flexible enough to fit the needs of almost all online and offline businesses.
- Manage professional organizations with thousands of members.
- Get paid for e-learning and digital courseware.
- Accept recurring payment for content, podcasts, video, and more.
- Create private social communities for unique interest groups.
- Develop robust directory or listings sites by topic or region.
- Offer product subscriptions or members-only product discounts.
5. WP-Members Membership Plugin
Total downloads: 70,000+
Five Star Ratings: 240+
A membership plugin for WordPress that is perfect for newsletters, premium content sites, clubs/associations, and more.
The plugin restricts selected WordPress content to registered site members.
WP-Members puts the registration process on the site front end so it is inline with your content rather than the native WP login page.
The plugin requires no modifications to your theme while remaining scalable for users who want to customize the look and feel, or want to restrict only some content.
It is a great tool for sites offering premium content to subscribers and is adaptable to a variety of applications.
- Block posts, pages, both, or none by default
- Block individual posts/pages
- User login, registration, and profile integrated into your theme
- Sidebar login widget
- Create custom registration and profile fields
- Set which fields display and which are required
- Notify admin of new user registrations
- Hold new registrations for admin approval
- Setting to automatically create post excerpts
- More than 100 action and filter hooks for extensibility
6. Simple Membership
Total downloads: 50,000+
Five Star Ratings: 300+
A flexible, well-supported, and easy-to-use WordPress membership plugin for offering free and premium content from your WordPress site.
The simple membership plugin lets you protect your posts and pages so only your members can view the protected content.
- Unlimited membership access levels
- User friendly interface for content protection
- Have free and paid memberships
- Membership payments log
- Member login widget on the sidebar
- Works with any WordPress theme.
- Ability to protect photo galleries.
- Ability to protect attachment pages.
- Show teaser content to convert visitors into members.
- Comments on your protected posts will also be protected automatically.
- There is an option to enable debug logging so you can troubleshoot membership payment related issues easily (if any).
- Ability to customize the content protection message that gets shown to non-members.
- Ability to partially protect post or page content.
- You can apply protection to posts and pages in bulk.
- Ability to use merge vars in the membership email notification.
- Membership management side is handled by the plugin.
- Ability to manually approve your members.
- Ability to import WordPress users as members.
- Filter members list by account status.
- Can be translated to any language.
- Hide the admin toolbar from the frontend of your site.
- Allow your members to delete their membership accounts.
- Send quick notification email to your members.
- Customize the password reset email for members.
- Use Google reCAPTCHA on your member registration form.
- Use Google reCAPTCHA on your member login and password reset form.
- The login and registration widgets will be responsive if you are using a responsive theme.
- Ability to restrict the commenting feature on your site to your members only.
- Front-end member registration page.
- Front-end member profiles.
- Front-end member login page.
- Option to configure after login redirection for members.
- Option to configure after registration redirect for members.
- Option force the members to use strong password.
7. WP User Manager
The WP User Manager plugin lets you create highly customizable user profiles together with custom user registration, login, password recovery and account customization forms to your WordPress website.
- Frontend forms: Allow users to register and login from the front of the site. Customize the registration form with custom fields to collect data
- Custom email notifications: Customize the emails sent to users when the register, reset their password and more
- Custom avatars: Users can edit their site avatar by uploading an image from the account page
- Elegant user profiles: All users have a public profile page to display their data
- Shortcodes editor: Easily add the plugin shortcodes to pages or posts with the shortcode generator and editor
- Roles editor: Edit roles and their capabilities. Create new roles and duplicate existing ones
- Beautiful user directories: Display users in a directories that can be displayed anywhere on the site
- SEO URLs: All the URLs are SEO friendly
- Content restriction: Restrict content for certain users, by logged in status, or by role
- Passwords management: Allow users to update their password from their account page
- Custom fields editor: Create custom user fields that can be used to collect data on registration
- Custom widgets: Display user data and forms in sidebars using widgets
- Custom redirects: Control where the users are redirected to on login, registration and more
- Powerful tools: Tools to be in control of your site and who registers
- Developers friendly: Customize and integrate with other plugins with a large number of hooks and filters
- Extensive documentation: Full documentation and expert support
- Translation Ready – The plugin and addons are fully localized ready for translation
If you’re a WordPress user, adding support for membership content to your site is easy, thanks to several great Membership Management plugins.
Each of the seven we reviewed has different strengths and weaknesses, so you should do some research before deciding which one will work best for your own site’s needs.
Once activated and configured properly, though, these plugins should pave the way for adding paid content and a multitude of related features to your site in no time at all.