Membership sites are not new. As the credit card commercial once said, ‘membership has its privileges’. More training providers who run training as a business lean more towards a recurring membership subscription-based model where learners pay a fee for access to the library. They are choosing this versus an a-la-carte approach where they buy one product.
Technology continues to evolve with what some consider positive and negative results. No matter one’s opinion, it has turned Learning and Development upside down over the years.
As your content evolves, you may see your learning library has a wide variety of media styles. Your learning content may include:
- eLearning Courses
- Classroom/virtual classroom
- Document libraries
- Discussions: Q&A databases and other social learning
- Connecting with experts; one on one chat with peers and experts
- Wiki – to share knowledge
Membership Subscriptions in Training and Education = Profit and Loyal Customers
Membership sites typically have three levels – Free, Silver and Gold. You can name them however you wish, but there are typically multiple delineations in the content available depending on the membership level.
Let’s look at an example. Your company may manufacture home décor products. Your internal clients choose courses based on their jobs or their manager’s request. You also offer information to your external clients. The company leadership decides all customers should have access to certain information. An educated customer is a loyal and more profitable customer.
Instancy sees the membership aspect of learning e-commerce sites becoming more popular. The subscription interface allows the user to view the catalog and choose the courses. The user selects their membership level. Based on their membership level, the LMS offers them the catalog choices for that level only. The Instancy LCMS allows flexibility to name each level independently and attach course offerings to each level. This requires seamless access to the content, from any source, containing multiple media types, and accessed on multiple devices.
What if you decide to offer the more complex and detailed courses to this same audience?
Most membership sites have a Free level. It is a terrific way to get high-level information to your external users. The Free level also acts as a gateway to the Silver and Gold levels (or any name you give various levels). A subset of the content may be available to the user based on their membership level. At the Silver level, they may access courses in the curriculum. At the Gold level, they have access to the entire curriculum.
This all sounds great but what about the e-commerce features?
This one aspect – e-commerce features – can make or break your membership site execution. E-commerce sites have distinct payment procedures. Products or services typically are one-time sales. Return customers make new purchases.
Membership sites use Recurring Payments processing. Some sites charge monthly, some quarterly and some yearly. Many sites allow all three. They also offer discounts for longer subscriptions and honor coupons.
Members receive email notifications on multiple topics. Users expect reminders about certain events, such as a notification the membership is about to expire. It could be news about a certain course in which they are enrolled.
Enormous Amounts of Data Resides in the Membership Site Ecosystem
Stop and think about the vast amount of information captured during the life cycle of just ONE user! From the time they first enter the site. The registration details. The history and analytics of their browsing history as they search the course catalogs. Payment processing information including the type of enrollment. Courses they take. Rate of completion. Test scores. This is just a few pieces of business analytics.
The Instancy Platform Easily Handles These Processes
Instancy allows you to spend your time on important business decisions and not complex infrastructure decisions. Instancy seamlessly interacts with most current systems. Instancy also has the horsepower to drive the entire effort. You choose what you want from our offerings. Once you become one of our customers, simply use our dashboard to add more pieces to the infrastructure. Or call us anytime to help you.
Now is the best time to think about a Membership Site strategy. Remember, we are here to help.
Until next time…