WordPress Specialist & Website Co-Creator / Coach

Considerations when creating an online course or membership site

This is a video I made to summarize the basic considerations when you want to create a membership or “courseware” site using WordPress. The key here is this:

  • Almost nobody will tell you about most of this

That’s kind of funny, right? But it’s true. In the real world, there are a series of major considerations I have come across in the real world. Planning for them may save you a lot of frustration later on.

The unseen issues or considerations include:

  • Customer perception of user experience (UX) equals reality in their world; therefore, consider their whole experience of signing up, asking questions, etc.
  • Customer support for Level 1 (basic), Level 2 (fairly basic), and Level 3 (advanced) issues (multiply times number of users)
  • Documentation (not mentioned in the video, but can really help with (1))
  • Support level of the plugin(s) you purchase
  • The simpler and more reliable the plugin(s) you buy, the better; more plugins can mean greater interactions; just consider this when weighing the features… presumably the plugins you purchase have been well tested (we sure hope so, but check reviews also), but even so, the interactions between different plugins may not have been
  • Consider a support person for your webinar
  • Consider doing a dry run “beta” of your first webinar, creating checklists
  • Consider doing a beta of your course before you make it live
  • Evaluate the plugin(s) you choose based on your core needs: Content restriction, payment processing (including payment methods, another topic), member levels, member emails
  • Scaling: when you have 4 or 5 users, you are likely to be able to handle almost all of this yourself; you should at least have in the back of your mind, though, if you want to grow, that you might want to think about building a team
  • Something else I forgot to mention in the video: Consider using a transactional email service such as Mailgun, because otherwise emails that get send to your members may get lost in users’ spam filters (this requires some technical setup, but over the past few years, I have seen this become absolutely essential)

At a later date, I would like to create a longer post about this, including some worksheets and so on.

Here’s the video:

 


What's your experience about creating online membership sites? Or... what is your dream about that? Let me know below: