Top 10 Membership Platforms for 2023: Are You Using the Right One?
If you’re an individual or organization looking to build a membership community, you know that the right platform is essential for success. With so many options available, it can be overwhelming to know which platform is the best fit for your needs. That’s why we’ve done the research for you and compiled a list of the top 10 membership platforms for 2023, taking into consideration features, pricing, and customer reviews. In this post, we’ll be discussing the pros and cons of each platform, making it easier for you to make an informed decision and choose the right one for your community.
A membership platform is software that allows you to create and manage a membership community. It helps you organize and keep track of members, and it also enables you to create and manage a website to promote your community. Additionally, it allows you to process payments and manage subscriptions, and also it provides communication tools like email campaigns and newsletters to keep in touch with your members. In simple words, it’s a one-stop shop for all your membership community management needs. It makes it easy for you to manage your community and grow it without the need for multiple tools or services.
Online membership site platforms are important for a variety of reasons, including:
- Online membership platforms make organizing and managing a community easy, allowing you to focus on growing it and improving it.
- They provide a variety of tools for communication and promotion, like email campaigns and website creation, which can help increase engagement and membership.
- They make it easy to process payments and manage subscriptions, which can streamline the process of handling finances for your community.
- They also provide analytics and reporting features, which can help you track the progress and engagement of your community and make data-driven decisions.
- Having a professional-looking website and easy access to your community’s information can increase the credibility and trust of your organization.
What is a membership website? How is it different from a membership platform?
Membership websites and platforms are great for managing and selling memberships for your business or organization. But they’re a bit different from each other. A membership website is like a regular website but with added features to manage memberships like online sign-ups and renewals, membership databases, and different levels of access or benefits for members. You create and manage it yourself. While a membership platform is like a separate tool or service that you can use to manage and sell memberships. It offers more features and customization options and can be integrated with different website builders, but it is usually more expensive.
Deciding on the best membership platform for your small business can be a tough task. With so many options available, it’s important to have a clear understanding of what you need and what you want before making a decision. To make it easier for you, we’ve gathered a list of the top 10 membership platforms on the market. Each one of them has its own set of features, ease of use, and value for money. Whether you’re just starting out or you need something more advanced, our list has something for everyone. It’s a great starting point to help you find the perfect membership platform for your business.
GroupApp is the ultimate all-in-one solution for building and managing your own membership community! It’s packed with all the features you need to create, grow and monetize your community. It’s so user-friendly and has a wide range of features, making it the perfect choice for small businesses or any other organization looking to build an online community.
It’s also an amazing platform for online creators who want to sell online courses and bring their communities together on one platform. With its affordable pricing plans, GroupApp is an unbeatable option for anyone looking to build a thriving membership community!
Here are some of the amazing features GroupApp has to offer:
Community management: Create and manage your own community, set up membership levels, and manage your members all on one platform. This includes features like content moderation, user management, and customizable membership levels.
Integration: Integrate with other popular tools such as Mailchimp, Stripe, Zapier, and Zoom, making it easy for users to connect their existing tools and workflows.
Affordability: Affordable pricing plans start at just $29 per month for a yearly plan. Also, the platform has a free plan that lets people try it out before signing up for a paid plan.
Affordable Pricing: GroupApp offers affordable pricing plans starting at just $29 per month. This makes it a great option for small businesses, non-profits, or any other organization that is looking to build an online community without breaking the bank.
Free Plan: GroupApp also offers a free plan, allowing you to create an online community and build online courses along with managing membership subscriptions. Afterward, if you decide that you need extra features like a custom domain or email support, then you can easily update your plan with GroupApp.
Simplicity: One of the biggest pros of GroupApp is its simplicity, whether it is setting up a new community or creating a new online course.
Analytics: The platform also enables analytics for your online courses that can help you keep track of student progress and find out if a student is stuck somewhere in their online learning journey.
User-Friendly interface: GroupApp is designed to be easy to use, making it a great option for those who may not be tech-savvy. There is a single and simple user interface for all members, which makes it easier for them to join several communities and navigate between them.
Integration: GroupApp integrates easily with other popular tools, such as Zapier and Zoom, making it easy for users to connect their existing tools and workflows. This allows you to streamline your workflows, automate some processes, and ensure a seamless experience for your members.
In short, GroupApp is the ultimate online community platform. It has everything you need to create and manage your own online courses and communities. With its user-friendly interface, wide range of features and affordable pricing plans, GroupApp is the perfect choice for anyone looking to build an online community.
It’s like having your own personal superhero to help you manage your community without breaking the bank. Plus, with its built-in management tools and integration capabilities, GroupApp is perfect for anyone looking to create and manage their online community as a creator.
So, whether you’re a small business owner, a non-profit, or just someone looking to build and sell an online course, GroupApp is a perfect choice.
It’s like a one-stop shop for all your community and membership needs, and it’s so easy to use that even your grandma could do it!
Mighty Networks is a platform that enables businesses and organizations to create and manage their own membership communities. This includes customizable member profiles, group and private messaging, content creation and sharing, event and calendar management, and customizable membership levels.
- The platform enables members to communicate with one another through group and private messaging, facilitating the sharing of information and ideas.
- Content creation and sharing options are available, such as articles, videos, and podcasts, that can be organized by topic or theme for easy access.
- A built-in event and calendar management feature is provided, making it easy for businesses and organizations to organize events and activities and for members to RSVP and stay informed.
- Members can create their own profiles, complete with bio, photo, and contact information, to connect with one another.
- Different membership levels can be created, each with its own set of benefits and perks, to cater to different needs.
One of Mighty Networks’ advantages is its user-friendly interface, which is simple to use and comprehend. It also provides a lot of education to help you grow and manage your membership community.
Although Mighty Networks’ community plan isn’t very expensive, its features are quite limited. For example, if you want to connect Zapier or develop online courses, you’ll need to purchase a more premium subscription.
Pricing starts at $33 per month for a yearly plan of “The Community Plan” and includes features such as live streaming, zoom integration, and paid memberships.
However, it’s worth noting that certain features, such as custom applications, have additional costs because they are a part of a more expensive plan.
Circle is a membership platform that helps creators and brands set up online communities. It has everything you need in one place. Letting them create online courses, discussion forums, memberships, and live streams all from one platform. Circle provides you with the tools to create and manage a strong online community.
- With Circle, you can easily add your own brand colors, use a custom domain, and integrate directly with your website or product.
- The platform allows you easily add custom CSS to your community it unique to your brand.
- Live stream directly inside of your community with Circle’s built-in video streaming solution.
- Monetization options, such as membership subscriptions and lock screens for content access.
- A mobile app is available for iOS and Android users.
- Advanced analytics and metrics are provided to track community engagement and growth.
- Circle offers various ways to monetize your membership community.
- Your based subscription plan doesn’t provide you with core features that come included in most community platforms; for example, using custom fields will cost you an additional $49/month or $599/year.
- Circle takes a 4% transaction fee on their basic plan, which costs $49/month, and collects a smaller percentage on their higher plans.
- Circle Customers consistently complain about the lack of customer support they receive.
The circle starts at $49 per month for their basic plan, and their more expensive Professional plan includes things like online courses and live video streams at $99 per month. Additionally, Circle offers a 14-day free trial for users to test the platform and see if it’s a good fit for their community’s needs.
Tribe (Bettermode) enables the creation of customizable online communities to assist businesses in delivering enhanced customer experiences. Bettermode allows you to create customer communities, support communities, and general online communities for your business.
- Bettermode makes it easy to change almost everything about your online community, from the layout to the way it looks and feels. You are in charge of everything.
- Customizable the profile field for your community members
- Open API gives your direct access to your data and the option to build a custom app for your community.
A customizable community platform that provides you with tools to build and create a membership community that meets your organization’s needs, along with an impressive selection of external tools to integrate with your online community
A higher cost compared to other platforms and the need to have the technical knowledge to set up and manage the platform. Additionally, it may not be suitable for smaller communities.
The advanced plan for Bettermode starts at $599 per month and to get started, you need to request a demo. This plan includes most of the features offered by the platform such as theme customization and analytics. There’s also an enterprise plan that provides additional features like enhanced security and SAML authentication for community members.
Wild Apricot is a platform designed for small associations and non-profits. It helps organizations manage their members, create websites and organize events. The platform offers membership management, website creation, event management, communication tools, and reporting and analytics. It automates tasks, helps create professional-looking websites, and allows easy communication with members. It also provides reporting and analytics features to track member engagement and overall business performance.
- Wild Apricot makes it easy to manage your membership databases with its tools to track member information, send automated renewal reminders, and process online payments.
- With Wild Apricot’s website builder and customizable templates, you can create a professional-looking website without any coding or design experience.
- Organizing events is a breeze with Wild Apricot’s tools for creating registration forms, tracking attendance, and processing online payments.
- Wild Apricot has a variety of communication tools, such as email and newsletter templates, to help you stay in touch with your members and promote your events.
- Wild Apricot provides a range of reporting and analytics tools that allow you to track member engagement, website traffic, and overall business performance, giving you a good overview of your association or non-profit performance.
One downside of Wild Apricot is that it might not be the best fit for small communities as it can be more expensive than other options. Additionally, it may be more difficult for new users to learn how to use all its features for community management.
Wild Apricot offers a flexible pricing plan that starts with a free option for up to 50 contacts or members. However, this free plan does not include features such as online payments, an online store, and apps. For additional features and a larger number of contacts, there is a tiered pricing structure that ranges from $48 per month to $420 per month, depending on the number of contacts you need to store, with options for up to 15,000 contacts.
Wild Apricot’s pricing plan includes only the costs outlined in their tiered pricing structure. However, if you choose to use a third-party online payment system, you may incur additional transaction fees.
Kajabi is an all-in-one platform for creating, marketing, and selling online courses, membership sites, and coaching programs. It helps entrepreneurs and small business owners with landing pages, sales pages, email campaigns, membership areas, payments, hosting, and managing memberships.
- Offers a range of tools for creating and organizing course and membership site content, including the ability to upload video, audio, and text-based lessons, as well as quizzes and assignments.
- Allows integration with various payment gateways, such as Stripe and PayPal, to sell courses and memberships.
- Offers customizable website templates, allowing users to create a professional-looking website without any coding or design experience
- Includes tools such as email campaigns, coupons, and affiliate management, to help users promote their courses and increase sales.
- Has built-in email marketing features that allow users to create and send email campaigns to their students or members.
- Features Analytics to track student progress, measure the success of their marketing campaigns, and analyze their overall business performance.
- Flexibility in terms of customization: Kajabi offers a wide range of customization options, allowing users to create a website that reflects their brand.
- Integration with other tools: Kajabi’s integration capabilities allow users to connect with other platforms, such as email marketing platforms, which can help to automate their business processes and increase conversions.
- Ability to handle recurring payments: Kajabi enables users to offer recurring payment options, which can be useful for membership sites and subscription-based businesses.
- Higher cost compared to other platforms: Kajabi is one of the more expensive online business platforms on the market.
- May not be suitable for small communities: Kajabi’s features and pricing may not be suitable for small communities or businesses just starting out.
Kajabi pricing starts at $149 per month, with three different plans to choose from. The Basic plan includes the core features of Kajabi. The Growth plan includes additional features such as webinars, affiliate marketing, and automation workflows and starts at $199 per month. The Pro plan includes all features and starts at $399 per month.
Podia is an all-in-one platform that allows users to create, market, and sell online courses, membership sites, digital downloads, and coaching programs. It provides the tools to create landing pages, sales pages, email campaigns, and membership areas. Podia also offers features such as analytics, built-in email marketing, and the ability to create a customizable storefront.
- Provides a range of tools for creating and organizing course content, including the ability to upload video, audio, and text-based lessons, as well as quizzes and assignments.
- Offers a customizable website, allowing users to create a professional-looking website without any coding or design experience.
- Includes tools such as email campaigns, coupons, and affiliate management, to help users promote their courses and increase sales.
- Provides customizable checkout pages, which allows users to personalize the checkout experience and increase conversions.
- Is designed to be mobile-responsive, ensuring that the website and courses can be accessed from mobile devices and tablets.
- Allows you to sell digital downloads such as e-books, PDFs, and audio files in addition to the courses.
- Allows users to create membership sites, with the ability to create different membership levels and offer exclusive content to members.
- The Podia is designed to be easy to use for non-technical users.
- It eliminates the need for multiple tools as it’s an all-in-one platform.
- It allows creating customizable and professional-looking landing and checkout pages.
- It also provides detailed analytics and reporting to track sales and customer engagement.
- Users have the ability to offer both free and paid content.
- May not be as flexible as other website builders or e-commerce platforms when it comes to customization options for website design and checkout pages.
- Analytics feature offers some insights on student progress but may not be as detailed or robust as other analytics tools.
- Offers some integrations with other tools, but the options may not be as extensive as other platforms.
- Membership site feature set may not be as extensive as other membership platforms.
- Pricing can be high for some businesses, especially as the number of students increases.
- Support options are limited to email and knowledge base, which may not be as responsive or personal as other platforms.
Podia offers a free plan with basic features such as a website, email marketing, and draft courses and webinars. To unlock most of the features, like the actual ability to publish online courses then, you will have to get the “Mover” package that starts at $39/month, but even that doesn’t unlock all the features because you will need to upgrade to the “Shaker” plan at $89/month for hosting webinars.
BuddyBoss is a WordPress plugin that allows users to create and manage online courses, membership sites, and communities. It provides a range of features for creating and organizing course content, managing membership levels, and integrating with payment gateways for selling courses and memberships. The plugin also includes features such as analytics, user management, and content dripping.
- Offers a range of tools for creating and organizing course content, such as uploading video, audio, text, quizzes and assignments.
- Provides variety of student management tools, like enrolling students, tracking progress, and issuing certificates of completion.
- Includes tools for creating and managing discussion forums, social networks, and communities within the site.
- Built on WordPress platform, which allows customization with different themes and plugins.
- Allows releasing content on a schedule to keep students engaged.
- Flexibility and customization options allow users to create a community that truly matches their brand.
- Ability to handle both community and course management, making it a great all-in-one solution
- Advanced membership and course features, including recurring payments and subscriptions
- BuddyBoss has higher costs to take into account, including the cost of WordPress hosting and the management and configuration of your community, which can accumulate to thousands of dollars annually.
- The steep learning curve for users who are new to community management and WordPress
- You will have to be an expert in WordPress to use BuddyBoss
Pricing for BuddyBoss starts at $228 per year for one website, which includes access to the platform, updates, and support. Unfortunately, there is no free trial available for users to try out the platform before committing to a subscription, which is a letdown.
Thinkific is a platform that allows users to create, market, and sell online courses, coaching programs, and membership sites. It provides a range of features for creating course content, managing student enrollment, and integrating with payment gateways for selling courses. Thinkific also provides a customizable website, student management, and analytics tools.
- Offers a varirty of tools for creating and organizing course content, like uploading video, audio, text-based lessons, quizzes and assignments.
- Provides a variety of student management tools, like enrolling students, tracking progress and issuing certificates of completion.
- Integrates with different payment gateways, like Stripe and PayPal, to sell courses and memberships.
- Allows customizing website to create a professional look without coding or design experience.
- Includes tools like email campaigns, coupons, and affiliate management to promote courses and increase sales.
Thinkificis easy to use and has tools for building and running online courses and membership sites. It has an App store and drag and drop course builder even on its free plan, so users can test it out before committing.
Thinkific may be more expensive than other options. Additionally, it’s not designed as a membership platform, so it has limited features for handling online communities.
Thinkific’s basic pricing plan starts at $49 per month, which only allows you to create one community with 5 spaces or channels, which may not be enough for larger communities. Additionally, this plan does not include live sessions or the ability to accept membership payments.
Thinkific offers a wide range of features, marketing tools, and an easy-to-use interface, making it a great option for those who want to create and sell their own online courses, compared to other platforms. But the pricing structure isn’t that great for people or organizations that are looking to create more than one community on the platform when working on a budget.
Uscreen is a comprehensive all-in-one video monetization platform for content creators that allows you to create code-free, branded websites or mobile and TV apps. Uscreen offers features like built-in communities and live streaming capabilities alongside its marketing and email tools to help you sell and grow your video platform and community.
The platform has an intuitive website and landing page builder that you can use to create a site that perfectly matches your brand.
Uscreen is a leading turn-key video content monetization platform that helps creators across industries and interest groups sell their videos online.
- Secure video hosting and streaming, allowing upload and distribution of video content.
- Offers monetization options like subscriptions, pay-per-view, and renting or selling videos.
- Customizable video player that can be branded to match the user’s website or brand.
- Detailed analytics and reporting, including metrics on engagement, revenue, and user demographics.
- Multi-platform distribution, including own website, mobile apps, and popular streaming services like Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Roku.
Uscreen has many good features that help users make money from their videos, track performance and grow their business. It also works well with other platforms like Stripe and ConvertKit, which makes it easy to handle payments and emails.
Uscreen may not be suitable for large communities that have budget constraints. It may also be more complex to use for beginners who are new to creating and managing an online course or membership website.
The pricing for Uscreen starts at $99 per month, which includes basic features like a fixed amount of video storage, email support, a customizable website, and flexible pricing options for members.
There is also one important point to note Uscreen charges an additional fee of $0.50 per subscriber/month. It isn’t much, but it should be considered before choosing the platform and committing to it.
The basic and growth plans include the websites, but the TV streaming and Mobile Apps are only included in the Uscreen plus plan, which also includes Live Streaming analytics and chat.
There are many platforms to choose from when creating an online community or course. It’s important to consider your goals and needs, and try out free trials before choosing a platform. It’s also important to consider the niche of your community as different platforms may have different strengths for different niches. GroupApp is one platform that has a lot of features that could match your needs.