How To Build Memberships to Support Your Course Business

Article by Nelli Gevorgyan / Updated at .22 Mar 2024
12 min read
How To Build Memberships to Support Your Course Business

Memberships have a tremendous impact on course business. More and more creators realize this and start offering memberships. 

Well, what is it at its core and why is it necessary? Let's explore six easy ways to build course memberships throughout this article. 

So, if you are ready, let’s start! 

Why do you need memberships if you sell courses?

Memberships offer a dynamic and sustainable approach to growing your online course creation business. Membership websites allow you to foster a sense of community. Also, it is a great way to build trustful relationships with and among your students. 

Here are the main benefits of memberships to support your course creation business:

  • Enhance student engagement levels through ongoing learning and growth opportunities. 
  • Foster long-term relationships with your customers & promote a sense of community.
  • Increase your cross-selling and up-selling potential.
  • Predictable recurring revenue stream. Memberships work as subscriptions. Thus you can predict levels of your income. This will allow you to allocate resources for personal & business usage properly. 

These were some of the primary benefits you will get through offering memberships for your students. However, there are a lot more, including flexibility, stability, personalization, etc. 

Considering online course offers

What can you offer in your memberships?

Memberships must be beneficial also for students. Thus, make sure to offer perks for those who subscribe to your website. 

Benefits you can offer in your memberships include:

  • Access to multiple courses for lesser price
  • Access to unlimited courses for certain plans 
  • Exclusive content. Guides, PDFs & eBooks that others should pay for to access your members should have access to 
  • Live webinars with you
  • Workshops & masterclasses
  • Guest expert sessions
  • Monthly newsletters 
  • Online community-building events
  • Many others. 

6 easy steps to build course memberships

How are you doing so far? Well, we are at the next long-awaited station. It is time to dive into the practical section of this article. Let’s explore how you can build a successful course membership site

#1 Structure your membership idea

To build a good membership site, first structure your idea. Successful management of an online business always requires a certain organization and structure. So, here are some tips on how to structure your membership idea. 

  • Define membership levels. Simply put, create different plans for different types of benefits and prices. 
  • Create a content strategy
  • Create a marketing plan to promote your membership website. Make sure to position it on the market properly.
  • Design the membership site. Follow the main rules of branding and design. (white labels, white spaced, color palette, readable fonts & sizes, graphics, dynamic, interactive elements)
  • Make sure to have an accessible payment system on your membership site
  • Define a set of rules and guidelines for members. It will allow to prevent content leakages and encourage a supportive environment 
  • Track and analyze members’ engagement levels to improve. 

An efficient structure can be achieved with a proper course creation platform. One such is Uteach. Also, it has an analytics feature to track the performance of your memberships. 

#2 Price your membership

Pricing strategy is extremely important to succeed in business. But how can you actually price your membership? The main steps to take include:

  • Complete a value assessment. (evaluate the benefits you provide & quality of your content)
  • Conduct market research & competitor analysis. (competitor pricing is always vital to consider during the pricing strategy stage)
  • Analyze your target audience. This includes analyzing their income potential & the willingness to invest in education
  • Analyze ROI rates & general ongoing expenses of yours
  • Understand pricing psychology 
  • Test & Improve.

Based on the data gathered, analyze, evaluate, and price your membership. Also, to gain more insights into pricing psychology, check out the “Psychological Pricing: Strategies, Advantages & Examples” article. 

Pricing Tip:

For instance, if you sell each course for $X, make sure your members get access to 5 courses for paying Y/mo. 

Also, you can offer different pricing plans for memberships. E.g., plan 1 offers access to 5 courses, plan 2 for 10, and Plan three offers unlimited access to all the courses. Do not forget to offer other resources as well. Give your customers a choice. 

#3 Create your content

The type of content that you offer within your membership business is crucial for success. Foster online learning by offering unique yet extremely high-value content for your members. Let’s review certain types:

  • eBooks. eBooks are popular, relevant & cost-efficient forms of valuable content. 
  • How-to tutorials that are exclusive and not available to the general public
  • Guides, PDFs & Infographics that are also exclusive and limited to the members of your site.

When creating content, pay attention to the following:

  • Readability 
  • Time-relevance 
  • Accuracy 
  • Value.

The content on your website must motivate, engage and educate members. Thus, allowing you to meet their needs and expectations. 

Let's take a look at a course creator who promotes herself through valuable content. For instance Marie Forleo. She is an online business coach that also offers podcasts and blog materials. These provide great value to her audience. Over the years, she has had substantial growth due to a successful content marketing strategy. 

Marie Forleo's website

#4 Design & Launch your membership

One of the most exciting phases of this process is to design & launch your membership online education website. 

Are you ready to find out more about design and launch? Let’s do it. 


The user interface must be on point to enhance user experience. The primary aspects to ensure high-quality UI & UX are:

  • Design intuitive navigation within your website. E.g., menus, sections, and pages make sure users can find everything needed easily. 
  • Maintain a consistent design style. Choose specific fonts, sizes, color palettes and keep the design consistent. 
  • Make sure your website is mobile-responsive. (choose course creation platforms such as Uteach, as it is optimized for all screen sizes) 
  • Minimize load times by optimizing and compressing media files.
  • Place clear CTAs throughout the website. 
  • Use enough white spaces to improve readability and navigation. 
  • Organize & publish content following the rules of visual hierarchy

The successful sample website is Tony Robbins. It meets all the criteria of visual hierarchy, loading speed, easy user navigation, etc.

Tony Robbins' website

After you are all set with UI & UX time to:

  • Set up payment systems & subscription plans
  • Beta test. Run a few beta tests to make sure everything works smoothly. (e.g., check loading speed, accessibility, availability to subscribe & pay for the membership) 
  • Official launch. 

#5 Start promotion & sales

After the design and layout are ready; it is time to start promotions and sales. Here are some ways to help you out. 

Define your Target Audience 

You must know who you are targeting to make a successful sale and gain visibility. How to define your target audience? 

  • Conduct market research to find basic information such as age, demographics, etc.
  • Analyze & track competitors
  • Create an Ideal Client Persona
  • Use Google Analytics to learn more about your current audience
  • Track social media to gain more insights into your and competitors’ audiences.

Create a value proposition canvas

Most of you may ask, what is it? Value Proposition Canvas is one of the most useful tools in sales. It consists of sections such as jobs, pains, and gains. After identifying these sections, it is time to create a Value Map. Value Map consists of sections such as Products & Services, Pain Relievers & Gain Creators. 

Sample to fill out: 

Value proposition canvas

By utilizing this tool, you can understand your audience's needs, wants & pain points. This will allow you to market your membership site in the best way possible. Thus, increase the efficiency of marketing efforts. 

Do SEO for your membership site

SEO stands for search engine optimization and aims to enhance your website’s visibility. SEO is a wholesome process of improving a website’s visibility and rankings. 

Before we dive into the practical tips, let’s take a look at a creator, “Make Money Matt.” In one of his YouTube videos, Matt revealed strategies he used to make more than $2mln by selling courses and memberships. Most of his strategies included basic SEO tips, such as metadata optimization. (e.g., tags on YouTube, keywords in your article,e, meta descriptions & titles, etc.) You can check his video here

Are you already excited about the unlimited income potential of selling online courses and memberships? Well, let’s review more practical SEO tips:

  • Keyword research. Identify 5-10 keywords to use. Use tools such as Google Analytics, SemRush, and Google Trends. 
  • On-page optimization. Make sure to incorporate keywords strategically within the website.
  • Off-page SEO. Incorporate practices such as link building. E.g., partner up with industry experts to offer backlinks. 
  • Make sure internal linking is on point. (link other materials on your website within your website content) 
  • Provide high-quality external links that will give customers value. 
  • Make sure the page loading speed is high to decrease bounce rates. 
  • Use alt tags (descriptions) with target keywords for images and videos
  • Add social share buttons. 

Leverage the power of social media

At this point, we all are clear on how powerful social media platforms are for marketing and sales. So, as an online course creator who wants to sell memberships, you must establish a strong presence on social media. Key factors include positioning yourself as a credible authority on the subject matter. 

So, make sure to post consistently and provide value. The main goals for posts should be engagement, education, and entertainment. You may use interactive posts such as Instagram stories with Polls, Questionsarries, and Q&As to engage your audience further. 

Besides organic traffic generated through continuous efforts, you also can create targeted ads. Create an ad for your membership launch, target the audience/niche you want to reach, establish a budget, and publish. 

Conduct pre-launch promotions 

Before launching memberships, make sure to conduct pre-launch promotions. Some of the best ways are ad campaigns, email campaigns & social media campaigns. 

To create an Ad Campaign, you can utilize tools such as Google Ads. Samples of Ad Campaigns are:

  • Landing pages
  • Targeted advertising
  • Countdown ads (e.g., sign up now to get 50% off your first month subscription) 

Also, create email campaigns. To do so, you need to:

  • Build an email list
  • Create campaigns with main email and chain of follow-ups
  • Set up email automation. (not to use a separate tool for automation. You can choose platforms such as Uteach that allow you to manage all aspects of membership websites from one place) 

Leveraging the power of social media it is also vital to create social media campaigns. A few examples are:

  • Hashtag campaigns 
  • Challenges
  • Contests (encourage users to share, comment, and giveaway rewards) 
  • Collaborations with influencers and industry experts. 

Engage with your audience

It is vital to engage with your audience on a continuous basis. For instance, after you launch the membership site, keep post-launch engagement, gather feedback, and keep in touch.

Planning promotional strategies for online courses

#6 Support your members with ongoing tips, webinars, and industry updates

Finally, keep in touch with your audience. Make sure you provide value on a continuous basis. It will greatly contribute to your authority and credibility. This includes email newsletters, exclusive tips, free webinars, and industry updates. 

You can make this happen all from one place, such as Uteach. Uteach is a potent tool for course creators, coaches, and trainers. It comes in handy with features such as memberships, marketing and website builder. 

How can you increase your course membership sales?

Sales are contingent upon the attitude of the salesman, not the attitude of the prospect.” – William Clement Stone.

We already reviewed the checklist for promotions and sales. However, you may ask, are there ways to increase sales? Of course, there are. Let’s review the best tips to help you increase your membership sales. 

  • Segment your audience & create buyer personas. Niching down will further help to increase sales. 
  • Host webinars and live events regarding your niche topics. 
  • Create lead magnets such as free PDFs and infographics which visitors can access by providing their name and email. 
  • Offer affiliate programs. Affiliate marketing is beneficial in multiple ways, including increased brand awareness. Ensuring affiliate marketing success can greatly boost your membership sales, as when a trusted source recommends the brand, it increases the chances of making a sale.
  • Share testimonials, case studies, and success stories. By doing so you will contribute to a higher trust factor toward your courses as efficient. 
  • Offer free trials. If you are offering monthly or yearly memberships, make sure to offer from a few days up to 2 weeks free trial-run period. 
  • Stay in touch with your audience & engage with them on social media. 
  • Collectevaluate, and analyze data from previous sales/marketing campaigns to improve your strategy. 
Uteach 14-day free trial


To summarize, memberships will provide you with immense benefits as a course creator. They will allow you to create a trustful community, have stable income streams, and grow your business at a faster pace. 

Simply make sure to follow the steps and tips mentioned in the article :)

Also, if you are searching for an online education management platform, then make sure to check out Uteach. It comes in handy with features such as live functionality, a website & course builder. As well as branding features and integrations. It is a perfect tool allowing you to create a membership website for your students. 

Take advantage of this opportunity and get started right away. It is your time to be successful. 

Uteach is with you all the way toward success.

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