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Technical Requirements To Run A Successful Membership Site

Aug 21, 2008
There are many issues that the technical aspects of your site address such as how to protect your membership resources from the publics eye? How do you take and process payments from the membership, how do you deliver membership resources?

What type of content will you need on your site such as forums, chatrooms, webinars, audio and video capability? How will you communicate with your membership? Are you going to have affiliates and if so, how will you handle tracking of their referrals, promo tools, and how will you pay commission?

You have lots of options when it comes to web technology. You may find it just a little challenging though to come up with just the right combination of web tools to meet the needs of the site and its members.

You will want to make your choices carefully to be sure that what you decide to go with will mesh with any membership site software programs that you will be using such as an email program that is able to integrate with your software program.

You need to password protect your materials for the site to be sure that only your members and not the general public have access to them.

Some of the more popular membership site software programs that you may consider are aMember Pro, iSubscribe, Your Membership Website Script, MemberGate, and also VisionGatePortal.

You of course will be using your price range to eliminate those that do not financially fit into your plan. Other than price you want to look at benefits and support.

Look at plug-ins and how they will integrate into forum software programs or WordPress blogs if you anticipate using blogs (highly recommended). Whatever technical systems you decide to go with you need to find out what the technical challenges might be using the system so using free trial periods is great for this.

Make sure the system has a dedicated software company that can support the system. Make sure you investigate fully all of your options, as for advise from business forums and evaluate any new membership systems that are developed so that you can access any improvements that they have made.

You must offer ways for your members to interact to initiate member loyalty. It is easier on you if everything can be integrated with your membership site directly so that members don't have to create a second user account in order to use the forums, but you may just have to do this.

Check into your membership site software to see what the plug-ins are you may find that they offer features such as live webinars, teleconferences, chatrooms which are almost as popular as forums.

If you are going to have an affiliate program you may want to spend considerable time investigating affiliate scripts before committing to one. You can find a standalone affiliate program or use one that comes with your membership site program.

Some of the more popular affiliate management software programs or sites are:

Clickbank

Post Affiliate Pro

iDevAffiliate

aMember

Your Membership Website Script

All of the above programs have great features and statistics because they are dedicated affiliate scripts. Check them out and ask questions before deciding.

If you want a full customer relationships management system (CRM) you may want to consider Infusionsoft. There are a ton of features that may make for a challenging start for you and it is not cheap! If you want an all-in-one solution that also provides tracking than Infusionsoft just may be what you need.

If you need both a shopping cart and an affiliate program that has the capability of offering a digital delivery service, ad tracking and your normal features than you may also want to check out 1ShoppingCart.

However it does NOT handle membership management, but you can plug it into any membership script that you are using.

Once you have made all of your technical decisions make sure that you set it up, and test every function carefully to make sure that everything is not only functioning properly but integrating well with other features when necessary.

Your technical aspects of your membership site are a crucial part of the success of your site, so spend the time you need in order to get it right.
About the Author
Tom Williamsen is an membership site expert.
Find out more about his membership website ebook and script here: http://www.yourmembershipwebsite.com
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