When it comes to your membership site, you always want to make sure you're protecting the content you build.
In this video, I’ll show you how to create membership levels and protect your site content. I’ll also go over managing your contacts’ membership level permissions when they enter your site.
The steps include:
Creating membership levels
Protecting your WordPress pages
Setting your contact permissions
Giving your users access to your site, and
Automating your membership site
So, let’s get started!
You’ll begin by Creating membership levels.
Go to your user profile, then hit “Administration,” “Membership” and “WordPress Website.”
Here, you’ll see a collection of your integrated WordPress sites. Click on the site that has the membership levels you want to edit.
Find the “Membership Levels” section and click “Add” to create a new level. All you need to do now is give your membership level a name and click “Save.”
You can rearrange your membership levels using the arrows on each level, or delete membership levels by clicking the “X” button. Click the “X Clear” button to delete them all at the same time.
Think about how you want to structure your site. Creating membership levels is easy, and you can change things down the road, but it’s easier to set up a good foundation from the start.
So let’s Protect your WordPress content so people see only content that’s in their membership level.
If you’re running a site with just a few levels — say, Silver, Gold and Platinum — things will be pretty simple.
But you might want to make a level for each course you sell, or have different levels for employees and customers. This is where things get a little fancier — not too complicated, though!
So switch over into the backend of your WordPress site using your admin login information.
Go to your pages and click on the page that you want to protect. You’ll see your ”PilotPress Options” along with a list of your access levels.
If you want a page to be accessible to anyone who lands on it, leave all the checkboxes unchecked! You’ll want to make sure to do that if it’s a homepage, sales page or order form.
Think about which levels should have access to the page you’re wanting to protect.
If you’re using the Silver, Gold and Platinum membership level structure, will Gold members have access to the Silver content? If so, you’ll want to select both Silver and Gold — and probably do the same for Platinum too!
After setting your membership levels, decide if you want to include this page in the navigation if a visitor doesn’t have access to the page. You can completely hide your page if someone doesn’t have access to it or isn’t logged in to your site.
There are a few pros and cons to this. On the one hand, showing people a site that has some content blocked off or hidden away just might pique their interest and convince them that your site is worth paying for! This is a strategy that businesses with paywalls — like online magazines — often use.
On the other hand, it can muddy your site’s navigation and create a frustrating user experience for the people who don’t have access to this content.
Now, let’s talk about the error redirect page. This tells WordPress what page to send visitors to if they try to access a page outside their membership level.
If I’m logged in as a Silver user and try to get to a Gold member page, I’ll be redirected to the error redirect page.
The easiest way to manage this is to create a page that says something along the lines of “Oops, you don’t have access to that page!” and use that for every page’s redirect.
Or you could use this as an upsell opportunity! On Silver pages, you could redirect people to a “Get access!” sales page that pitches your Silver package. Your Gold page could redirect them to an “Upgrade to the Gold package” sales page.
Once you’ve gone through the three settings on this page, click “Update” to save your changes.
Now that you’ve protected your content, let’s talk about how to Set contact permissions in Ontraport. This is where the user management side of things will happen.
After logging in to your Ontraport account, go to your “Contacts” collection.
Go to a contact record and click on the “Memberships” field tab.
Click “Add New WordPress Membership” to create new membership access. If this contact is already registered with your site, the membership will show up here. You’ll click on it to edit this contact’s membership access.
You’ll see a list of options having to do with this contact’s access to your site:
“Site.” This is a drop down of your integrated membership sites. You’ll see the membership site — or sites — you’re giving them access to.
“Status” will be set to “Enabled” or “Disabled.” Disabling a contact’s login will make the membership site stop working for them. Maybe disable this if they haven’t paid their bill!
“User Name.” This is our contact’s email address by default. But you can set it to something different if you want.
“Password” is where you’ll edit a contact’s login password.
“Nickname.” This is your contact’s alternate username, if they have one.
Next to these options, you’ll see a “Membership Level” section. Add levels using the “Add” button, or delete previously set levels using the “X” button next to each level.
Click “Save” to create the membership.
“Give users access.” When manually giving a user access to your site, you’ll also send them their login information — usually via email using merge fields.
To do this, click “Email” then “Quick Email” to send just this contact a one-off email. We’ll talk about automating this in the next step.
After filling in your basic email settings — the “from” name, email recipient name and subject line — you’ll fill in the body of the message.
Insert two merge fields here: “User Name” and “Password.” You’ll want to prompt before the merge field so they know what they’re looking at! The easiest way to do it is with something like this:
Username: [User Name] and Password: [Password]
If you have more than one integrated membership site, there will be different sections in the merge field drop down for different sites. So make sure you’re merging the right one into the message!
Once your email’s written and ready to send, click “Send Now” to send it off to the new user.
And that’s it! This contact now has access to your site at the level you chose!
The last thing to do is Automate this whole process — because let’s face it: manual is for suckers. This is where we get into more customizable territory.
Let’s create a new automation.
Your triggers might be different. But most membership sites will include triggers like products purchased or forms filled out.
Beneath your trigger, you can insert a “Give WP Membership Access” element. After you click on this element, select the site and level you want to grant users who follow this flow. If you have a trigger for Silver package purchases for example, you could select the Silver membership level here.
Or you might want to use the “Remove WP Membership Access” element. This builds automations for things like cancels or when a payment is declined.
After your “Give WP Membership Access” element, you’ll want to include a “Send Email” element that sends new members their login information. This message welcomes them to your site, sends them a link to log in and gives them their username and password.
Whatever flow you decide to go with, make sure you click “Save” and “Publish” when you’re done to turn on your automation.
Once you do that, you’re all set! Memberships will automatically be created based on your trigger.
That about does it!
In this video, you learned how to create membership levels, protect your site content and manage memberships both manually and with automations!
If you’re ready to start getting into the more advanced PilotPress features, be sure to check out the rest of the videos in this series.