February 10, 2021

Should you separate out your Sales and Membership Content?

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People often ask us, "Is it is best to keep everything (sales, blog, member content) on one site, or better to use a subdomain for the membership site?".

There's no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. It depends on a few things.

  • Where you are at in your membership site journey?
  • How comfortable you are with WordPress?
  • Would you be able to manage two different WordPress sites (or two different WordPress installs)?
  • Are you on a shared hosting account and running into performance issues?
  • How busy is your site?

If you are just starting out and are new to WordPress, I won't recommend setting up two different WordPress sites. Get comfortable with WordPress, focus on your content/community and launch your membership site first. You can always separate it out later using a plugin like Duplicator.

However, if you already have a blog and now want to convert it into a membership site, it's better to separate it out for performance reasons. This way you can use all the features of a cache plugin such as WPRocket on your sales/blog site, without having to whitelist all membership pages.

As far as separating out your membership content, you have two options:

  • Use the same domain for everything, but just install WP in a subfolder (for e.g. yoursite/members) for your membership site. It'll be easier to manage it this way as everything will be on the same domain. And you can use all the features of a cache plugin in your main WP install where you have the sales site / blog.
  • Use your main domain for sales/blog and a subdomain for member site. This way, whatever you do on your membership site, won't impact your sales/blog site. You can also use all the features of a cache plugin on your sales / blog site.

Recently one of our users, who runs a very busy/active site, and has a ton of content and active plugins, plus has everything on the same domain, reached out to us as he wanted to know if he should move his membership content to a subdomain.

While it makes sense to move, you need to have a solid plan before you start moving things. 

1. You'll have to first use a plugin like duplicator to copy your entire site to a subdomain install. If you use DAP and SPC (our cart plugin), it'll copy it over to the subdomain install. 

2. Then remove everything you don't need from the subdomain install - plugins, content, etc.

3. Test everything on the subdomain site - your membership login, content access, payment buttons. etc.

4. Now start replacing the payment links on your sales page with the ones from the subdomain. Test a few and make sure it's working.

5. In the meantime, your main site will continue to work as you have not yet removed the membership plugin or cart plugin from the main domain.

6. After you have replaced all of your payment buttons and connected them to the new links from the subdomain install, and updated your membership related menu items on the main domain to point to subdomain, you can now remove DAP from your main domain.

You can also remove your membership content from the main domain. But first take a full backup of your main site before you do any of this. This way, if something goes wrong, you can rollback to the previous / working version.

My Online Course Launch Strategy

The 3 main challenges that most people face when it comes to building and launching an online course: 

1. No list or small list.
2. Busy schedule.
3. Don't know how to put it all together, organize and deliver.

So I decided to create a FREE training video to show you the exact steps I follow to build my list, create and organize my course content, and the order in which I execute in every phase - from idea, planning, audience building, content creation, implementation to the actual launch.

No Audience? No List? No problem! 

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