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Configure WP eMember Settings for Version 8.9

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In this session we show how to configure WP eMember settings for version 8.9 and explain the advantages and disadvantages related to each setting and how each one works.

We also talk about how to deal with automatic payments from members and show an example of a Membership site using Social Triggers and the different roles available to the users.

Video Transcript

Rick: Let’s just walk through General Settings here for a second.

Member: Yes, that’s what I want, that’s all I really wanted, that’s the main thing I wanted.

Rick: Okay, so if you are going to apply free membership then you have to check that right there.

Member: And I did get a little confused with that. You know it’s only going to be like for small groups. I’ll still check that?

Rick: Yeah, check that.

Member: Okay.

Rick: And then Free Membership level put 2.

Member: Yeah, because we checked that.

Rick: Uhuh. We’re not going to provide the free member. We’re not going to create a registration page for the free member.

Member: Correct.

Rick: Or if we do we’re going to make it obscure.

Member: Right, obscure.

Rick: So you could go ahead and say Free Members Must Confirm an Email Address, that’s what I would do.

Member: Okay so right, even if it’s something like you were Mike Nickels just to what, make sure they’re on the email list and they get it?

Rick: Yeah, you want to make sure that the email that they supplied is a valid email.

Member: Okay, sounds good.

Rick: Because people mistype their emails so you know… I would take entries per page and make it 100.

Member: Yeah, got that.

Rick: Because 50 is append I mean really, what you want to do is paginate as little as possible.

Member: Right.

Rick: And so in fact, I’ve gotten to the point where I think my entries per page is 200 now because I just cannot bring myself to.. I mean everytime I go to page 4 it frustrates me so…

Member: Yeah, yeah it’s exasperating.

Rick: So you’re not going to enable More Tag Protection unless you are going to use the More Tag for showing teaser content and then hiding the rest of it.

Member: Yeah, I doubt that.

Rick: Right.

Member: That’s not the plan.

Rick: Okay.

Member: So we skip over that.

Rick: So Public Profile Listing. Now, the reason why you would allow a public profile listing is if there was some value in the members knowing who the rest of the members are. If there is no value then I would just turn that off.

Member: No.

Rick: If there is a value I would be inclined to use the SimplePress system for that instead of WP eMember system for it.

Member: Okay so what I’m going to do, I’m going to uncheck that because like you I want to build a community that’s where the value is but you’re saying don’t do it through WP eMember, do it through SimplePress.

Rick: Right.

Member: Which I’m going to add in a month or two after I launched.

Rick: Right.

Member: So I’m hoping to launch this in a week or two you know for private to test it out, friends, family and loved ones and tell me you know, the Paypal worked or didn’t get the signup link, confirmation link or the page or they can’t find the videos and all that it’s not organized…okay so I uncheck that, I uncheck that.

Rick: I would uncheck Allow Account Deletion and Allow WordPress Account Deletion.

Member: Okay.

Rick: Because that has the potential of throwing off your data so you know, why does it matter that they can delete their account? Well, you want to know if you’re comparing how many members you have or if you want to know whether or not somebody is joining and they used to be a member a long time ago or whatever, you know you just don’t have that facility if they can delete their own membership so…

Member: Correct.

Rick: I don’t allow account deletion.

Member: That sounds… yeah, it makes total sense to me. You want to know how many people signed up and how many dropped out.

Rick: Yes.

Member: And who they are.

Rick: And so the next one, Enable Secondary Membership I would check both of those. Allow them both to assign multiple levels per user and also when a member’s primary level expires, one of the non-expired secondary levels can become the primary level eventhough you’re not really doing that now.

Member: Right.

Rick: I would still check both of those because you’re going to do it sometime in the future. Now I would uncheck Gravatar and Profile Image. Again I would let SimplePress manage that stuff.

Member: Nice.

Rick: And I would also I mean you’re right to check Custom Fields unless there is something special you want to make sure you capture. You know, if you want to know their mother’s maiden name or I don’t know, you know.

Member: Their Social Security number.

Rick: What’s their porn name or something like that you know, then you could enable Custom Fields but otherwise I just would leave it.

Member: Okay but here’s an example that you did give in your webinar and just to prove that I did listen. You did this was one potential use I mean the more information that people fill out the more annoying the form is we both that.

Rick: Sure.

Member: On the foot side it would be kind of cool to know like okay, how did you find out about this, is it through one of my webinars so I want to start doing webinars to promote it.

Rick: Right.

Member: Like free. Not sales webinars like you do you know, I know you don’t like webinars actually but anyways, I’m going to do seminars you know just 30 minute seminars on some aspect of all my marketing and I want to know did you find me on Facebook, did you find me in Google, did you find me on a seminar/webinar.

Rick: There you go, absolutely then you can do that.

Member: Now do you think that’s asking too much information because people hate, I hate filling out forms.

Rick: Well, you can make it optional, they don’t have to tell you.

Member: Okay. When I click that is that going to give me like radio buttons or a drop down list or just they type them and that’s it?

Rick: Well, that’s a whole separate conversation. There is once you checked this then there’s custom fields that you can add to the registration form.

Member: Okay. Yeah and I you know, I don’t want to take your time with that if that wasn’t the point of this call you know. You don’t have to get into that tonight but…

Rick: Well, it’s just not part of the General Settings so I think we should finish the General Settings first.

Member: Correct, correct I’m sorry, okay yes. Okay so Enable Custom Fields we want to do that, I can set that up later you know, radio button drop down whatever. Enable Auto Expiry Email Notification, you said to keep that checked and you were saying that was one of the advantages of this over Wishlist Member. Correct? Is that still true?

Rick: Yeah, it is still true you know, I mean there’s a benefit. It’s just going to send out one email so it’s not you know, we’ve found that what you really need to do is send out 5 or 6 emails and you start…

Member: Before, during or after I’m sorry.

Rick: Right. You start a month before.

Member: Right.

Rick: And you end on the day they expire and you send 4 or 5 emails in that well, essentially 1 email a week until they sign up and you know you have a very large percentage of people that sign up with the first email they get.

Member: Yeah.

Rick: And then a pretty large percentage of them who sign up at the last email they get.

Member: Right.

Rick: And then a reasonably small number of people who sign up in between except that you know, those people who sign up at the end sort of had this impending doom you know…

Member: Sure.

Rick: Announced to them and so the consequence of that is that the auto-expiry email system only sends out 1 email so it’s not as useful as you might like it to be because you don’t really have the choice of setting up an autoresponder system that automatically sends out 5 emails and stops sending the email when the person renews.

Member: Ahhh… Okay, let me ask you another quick question so a monthly membership you have like 6 months, a year however you do do it I don’t know because I’m a lifetime member now, I’m VIP. So let me yeah, just get a VIP medal or something there for a lifetime member. That was a steal man, that was a steal, that’s incredible. Me and Mike I remember we were talking about and we’re like we gotta do it man, this is crazy. But in any event, okay you do 6 months per a year but what about my monthly? I mean I don’t want to start on you know the 2nd day of the month reminding them at the end of the month this is kind of… What would you suggest…

Rick: Oh no, that won’t happen on a monthly. This will only happen on those things that have an expiration.

Member: Right. So I’m going to be doing yearly so that will apply to the yearly.

Rick: It would apply to the yearly, yeah.

Member: Yeah but I’m saying for the manual, so with the end of year this will send out one so let’s just go with the yearly so the last month I got to start sending them out. Okay, this will send out one and I get to send out like 4 or more or something, correct?

Rick: Right.

Member: Okay now, what about on the monthly what would you do? Send out one the last week of the month or what would you do?

Rick: Well, some of the things that I subscribe to on a monthly basis send me an email once a month saying we are you know, “Thank you for your payment” essentially.

Member: Right.

Rick: They either tell me that I just paid my $10 or they tell we’re going to take your $10 tomorrow you know…

Member: Right.

Rick: One of those things although I don’t do that for people who pay monthly.

Member: Yeah.

Rick: You know they just pay until they stop paying. Now I strongly encourage you to do it monthly because ultimately that’s where the real money is, right? The real money is in these automatic payments that happen every month and they just keep on happening and what I did, I didn’t have a monthly membership at first and when I switched offering a monthly membership at that point my revenue took a nose dive because people were signing up monthly.

Member: Right.

Rick: And it was really sort of too late for me to switch from dependents on the annual membership.

Member: Right.

Rick: Now, the downside of monthly is that some people will just come on join for a month and go away.

Member: Right.

Rick: And you know at some point, I will be re-instituting a monthly membership at BYOBWebsite.

Member: Right.

Rick: Now, I don’t actually know when I’m going to do that but at some point I am going to do it and because I still have members who for 4 years have paid $19.95 a month.

Member: Right.

Rick: And they’re still paying it every month.

Member: Wow.

Rick: Well, you know that’s actually quite a bit more revenue than an average member generates over the same period of time. But I’m just not ready yet to make the move and also sort of cope with the immediate cash flow reduction that it’s going to likely result in.

Member: Right. For me my strategy is you know, earn my money building websites and keeping my bills that way in the meantime. I’m thinking $10 is so low people that have never heard of me will sign up and $10 is so low that once they sign up and see the value they’re just going to keep doing it month after month, there’s no reason to quit in my mind. So do you think I’ll have a high retention rate as long as…

Rick: I would assume absolutely. I would assume that at $10 a month your retention rate will be higher after I mean you’ll generate more revenue after 2 years than if you had annual memberships.

Member: Okay, great. I’m still going to offer the annual because sometimes you know the upfront money is nice but number 2, I got that from talking to a client and he said you know, for some people.. I don’t care if it’s $5 a month they’re like I just don’t like you know…

Rick: Absolutely.

Member: Getting there every single month.

Rick: Absolutely.

Member: That’s only $5.

Rick: Right, absolutely that is the case and I have had lifetime members ask to pay the lifetime membership in fell swoop rather than you know, spreading it over 3 payments because they just don’t like the payment thing.

Member: Right.

Rick: So it’s true that people do have that objection so you just have to decide you know, typically if somebody pays annually they pay a lower rate than if they pay monthly.

Member: Correct.

Rick: Right so save 20% so instead of $120 you can get it for $99.

Member: That’s exactly, Rick that is exactly what I’m going to charge. $99 for a year or $10 a month it’s their choice.

Rick: Right. So anyway, the email in that case, the only people who are going to see that email are the annual members or actually the other people who see the email are the free members who expire after 6 months.

Member: Correct.

Rick: Because any expiring member is going to see that email.

Member: Right.

Rick: Okay.

Member: And that would be for clients that I like, I wanted them fit but for whatever reason, sign them up for 6 months and then you know what, you get 6 months membership now if you still want to keep it just pay $10 a month I mean it’s not even something we’re talking about.

Rick: Right and you can even put a link in that email for them just to renew right there. Click on the link, it signs them up and they get on board.

Member: Oh, in this email?

Rick: Uhuh, yeah.

Member: Oh nice, nice okay.

Rick: So…

Member: I guess we’ll move on… go ahead.

Rick: No, Manually Approve Member Registration I would not do that because people want, if somebody pays money today..

Member: Oh, yes.

Rick: Or this minute they want it this minute.

Member: Yes, it’s too late in the morning.

Rick: Protect Comments Separately, nope.

Member: Okay.

Rick: Members Must be Logged in to Comment, it depends on how you take comments. I don’t know what role comments play in this process but this is a global setting so if you’re going to have posts that are public and you want the public to post comments on it then you don’t want that button checked.

Member: Okay, yeah. I think what I’m going to do is have.. I’m going to have a blog post okay so this is just a real briefly, this is my little you know, this is my free blog if you will it’s a WordPress website it’s got the blog in the front. I’m using Social Triggers okay real simple okay and so this is going to be free to everybody

Rick: Right.

Member: And I’m going to have like a link here you know, it said “Find Out My #1 Blog Secret” you know become a member and it’s going to bring you over as you can see it’s going to bring you over to you know the members. Now in this one, I’m going to have a separate blog and that blog is mostly going to be about the things that are coming up you know for the members you know, I’m going to be doing this next month or you know…

Rick: Okay.

Member: whatever

Rick: Okay.

Member: So I just thought I really haven’t thought it through about the comments so do you think I should limit the commenters just to members because that’s the function of this. These blogs if I put them in here somewhere on the membership site, have a completely different role than these blog posts so I don’t know…

Rick: Yeah. If it’s not the same site I think you can, you can go ahead and check that. You can effectively get the same thing by checking the box in discussion in the discussion settings in WordPress by saying that you know, they must be logged in to comment.

Member: Okay, okay.

Rick: Which it effectively does exactly the same thing.

Member: And now that I’m thinking about it, one of the reasons I would want to do that would be to help cut down on spam just one last thing for me to do.

Rick: Absolutely.

Member: Yeah because it’s like the only people that can comment are fellow members. Okay, I guess the next step would be this one.

Rick: Well…

Member: I don’t even know what that means.

Rick: What it means is that it will Google… if you’ve got this setup for Enabled Google First Click then Google will crawl your entire page even if it’s protected. The protection will allow Google to crawl the page and index it and then if somebody visits the page from a Google search the first time they visit that page, it’s free, it’s entirely public. Now if they go back to it it’s now hidden.

Member: And the second time it’s protected.

Rick: It’s protected, right.

Member: I don’t even know what page they’d be referring to in..

Rick: It’s…

Member: Oh, whatever page I list here,

Rick: No, no.

Member: Is that it?

Rick: That’s just a custom message. This is for all protected content on the site period.

Member: Okay, I’m going to say no to that. What do you think? Survey?

Rick: That’s what I did too. I don’t…

Member: Yes.

Rick: I don’t do that either.

Member: Survey says no. Okay, what about Format the Post/Page Protected Message?

Rick: I wouldn’t worry about that at the moment. When you’re setting up your protection stuff you can see what it looks like and then make that decision. This has to do with you know, what that little thing looks like when it says you’ve found protected content.

Member: Gotcha, gotcha. Okay I understand that’s fine. Let me just take a quick look at what we got left. Okay, so we’re almost done I guess. We’re right here okay I guess we can kind of blow through this conversation…

Rick: Well, you have to decide whether or not you want to have login redirection there, Enable After login Redirection so when they log in it takes them some place? You know, I use it on my site to direct them to their dashboard but…

Member: Okay.

Rick: But having said that you know, I keep toying with removing that because you know actually, if somebody comes to a place on the site that they want to do something and they realized they have to log in they probably would rather just to remain logged in on the page that they’re on.

Member: Oh, okay that makes sense.

Rick: So this has login redirection, if you check that then it’s going to redirect them to a page you specify, if you uncheck it they won’t be redirected.

Member: Oh well, except after they logged in like you when you showed it’s got the different menu you know, like Products and Courses and…

Rick: Well, that will change anyway. That would change anyway.

Member: That will change, right.

Rick: Yeah.

Member: So then that’s fine.

Rick: Right.

Member: That’s what we want to happen and they don’t, we don’t need to redirect them onto one of those pages, they just stay where they are the menu changes.

Rick: Yeah.

Member: And that’s good enough.

Rick: Right.

Member: So what do you think? It sounds maybe I should…

Rick: I would leave it unchecked. Enable Auto Login After Registration, I would check.

Member: Okay so…

Rick: I wouldn’t worry about the Secure RSS Feed.

Member: Yeah, forget that.

Rick: Display a Link to Member’s Welcome Page

Member: Display a Link to Member’s Welcome Page

Rick: Yeah, that’s fine. It’s essentially their dashboard right? Disable Inline Login. The Enable Fancy Popup, you just have to try it and see whether or not you like it or not.

Member: I generally don’t like popups so…

Rick: So just uncheck it.

Member: Right. You don’t have one of those, you don’t have one of those, right?

Rick: No, actually no. You know I don’t use WP eMember on my site but…

Member: Oh, I forgot.

Rick: Mine does actually popup. You click the login link and then the login form pops up and everything is darkened out.

Member: Yeah. The reason is I just get a little nervous over popups because so many people are on mobiles maybe it’s not going to work on particular smart phone…

Rick: Yup.

Member: or maybe the sizing isn’t right.

Rick: Yeah, I got you. You just have to decide.

Member: Does that make sense?

Rick: Yeah.

Member: Is that logical you know…

Rick: It is. So…

Member: And then software changes just don’t know go ahead.

Rick: I wouldn’t disable Inline Login. I wouldn’t restrict IP addresses.

Member: Right.

Rick: Remember that if well, and I wouldn’t logout a member automatically.

Member: Correct.

Rick: I wouldn’t prevent Simultaneous Member Logins. I’m routinely logged into my site in more than one browser. Each browser login counts as one login right?

Member: Okay.

Rick: So I would leave those alone.

Member: Okay.

Rick: Allow Expired Account Login, that’s fine and what that allows them to do when they are logged in then they’re going to see a message that says your account expired please renew or whatever you want them to do and this is where you put the URL of the page that is the renewal page for them.

Member: Gotcha. And it should be easy enough I mean I think you can see where I’m going with this. Somebody is a member for 5 months, $10 a month, they cancel you know, 3 months later they want to sign up again, that’s an easy process to setup with this, with WP eMember you know, right?

Rick: Yes, right because if they log back in again they will be offered well in this case, if they log in again what will happen is they’ll be directed to the renewal page.

Member: Right.

Rick: After they’ve logged in.

Member: Okay, cool. And this will be a separate page with a separate registration I guess.

Rick: Yeah. Well, it’s not registration it’s a Buy Now button.

Member: Right, I got you. Okay. So I guess I’m not messing around with Bookmarks. It just seems unnecessary really you know, it just seems like a lot of extra work and a lot of…

Rick: Yeah.

Member: moving parts and pieces. What do you think? I think I should just forget about it, what do you think?

Rick: Yeah, I would forget about it. I mean they’ve made it more flexible than it used to be but it still is something that shows up in opportune ways…

Member: Right.

Rick: on a page so…

Member: Yeah and I just think it’s going to be like your site, I don’t even know if you have any…

Rick: I do but it’s not working properly at the moment but I do, yes.

Member: Okay but for whatever it’s worth Rick I’ve never had a problem finding you know, going back to a course that I wanted to take I mean…

Rick: Right.

Member: but I don’t know if that’s really necessary.

Rick: See that little button there that says, “Add this lesson to favorites”?

Member: Right.

Rick: That’s it.

Member: Oh, yeah I didn’t even notice that.

Rick: Yeah.

Member: Hello. Okay so where would I… okay it’s not working?

Rick: And now you would.. you could if you go to my dashboard, what’s supposed to happen is scroll down below that stuff, it’s down at the bottom actually. Look yeah you see, what’s supposed to happen is it’s supposed to be showing up right there in your favorites but that’s not the thing you clicked, right?

Member: Right.

Rick: You were on something else entirely, that’s what’s not working right now.

Member: Yeah, I was on your membership…

Rick: Right.

Member: course, hey so… So you’re saying it’s not working, I’m going to hit a refresh it shouldn’t make a difference it just apparently didn’t work.

Rick: Right it’s not working.

Member: I got to try again so if I were…

Rick: It’s something I got to figure out.

Member: Right. I don’t even know how I got this replay and…

Rick: No, that’s happening automatically to you that for some reason or another I got a query messed up some place that shows that Thesis 2.1 Launch Party replay a whole bunch of times.

Member: Okay so we’re going to forget Bookmark Settings, that’s just one more thing that I don’t have to worry about. Okay, WordPress User Integration Settings, we’re going to obviously that’s what the user roles was all about so that’s what we’re doing.

Rick: Oh, look at this, this is new Preserve WordPress User Role, if checked the WP User’s role will not be updated according to the role value set by the membership level. Oh, okay it’s changed so the advice I gave you was incorrect.

Member: Okay.

Rick: Now if somebody registers in a specific user role well, I mean it even looks like this would happen if you manually change them.

Member: Oh, okay so if I want to upgrade you to Global Access Admin I could do it?

Rick: By simply making me a Global Access and then it would automatically make me the administrator unless you check that box.

Member: Okay, yes.

Rick: I wouldn’t check the box I’d leave it like it is.

Member: You’re right, you’re right just leave it alone. Let me just read it again so I understand that if checked, the WP User’s role will not be updated according to the role value set in the membership level. Actually, this is I don’t know I’m a little.. it’s kind of a double negative so I’m a little confused. Just leave it unchecked?

Rick: Yeah, I leave it unchecked.

Member: By default the WP User role is set to the value specified in the Default… I’ll worry about that later because I’m getting you know, (28:03). Site Wide/Domain Level Page Protection Settings.

Rick: I would have it disabled.

Member: Right.

Rick: Because what it does is it can either lock down the whole site. Yeah, you know essentially makes it a private site. Now that’s a good thing to do in a case of a denial service attack or something like that but it’s not particularly useful to you otherwise.

Member: Gotcha, gotcha. Affiliates, I’m not going to do this like once again until 3rd you know, 2nd or 3rd month but I am going to do it so what would you.. I haven’t even looked at these.

Rick: No, I wouldn’t automatically create accounts, let’s just…

Member: That’s crazy.

Rick: Yeah, it just automatically makes them an affiliate.

Member: Yeah. Limit Account Creation to Particular Levels Only. Well, I know what that means I’ll decide that later.

Rick: Yeah.

Member: Yeah, I mean basic member or whatever, it’s not a big deal.

Rick: You don’t need Remote POST, you’re not going to need the Secret Word so you can leave those alone. I mean it’s automatically created but it doesn’t really matter. For the first while, right now I would absolutely check debug right there because when you go to checking I think it would be good for you to see what happens if it doesn’t work out the way you expect it to work.

Member: Correct and Sandbox Testing refers to Paypal. Oh yeah, there it is.

Rick: Yeah.

Member: So I’m going to say leave it unchecked for now.

Rick: Right.

Member: And check it later.

Rick: Yes, that’s what I would do, yeah.

Member: Now, here’s okay I’m going to update all the work that we did before you know, just to alleviate an hour’s worth of tutoring so that has been saved. My other question, in order to test this Rick I was wondering you know, if it would make any sense instead of doing Sandbox Testing or an addition to that, might have Mike Nickels sign up and pay auto-renew like a dollar every 3 days or will this do 10 cents every like 3 days so we can test it within a week and know whether it’s doing auto-renew so we could test most of it that way. Does that make sense or does it have to be at least a dollar do you think?

Rick: I don’t know that there’s an automatic at least thing. These days I very rarely do Sandbox Testing because typically it’s just plain old works.

Member: It does not work?

Rick: No, it does work.

Member: Oh good you know…

Rick: That is the system generally just works and I verified that it’s working by you know, making a real purchase and seeing what happens.

Member: Yeah.

Rick: That’s what really what I usually do however, you can go to the effort to setup Sandbox Testing and you’re going to do that both at WP eStore and WP eMember and then you’re just going to follow that thing I taught on how to do that.

Member: Correct, correct. The only thing that makes me a little nervous, I would like to know before 30 days if the auto-renewal is working properly, that’s my main concern just to make sure it’s all working you know cool and everything is great and I hate to sign up like 50 people or 30 people and then find out oh, the auto-renewal doesn’t work.

Rick: Sure so you could set your test one to auto-renew every week.

Member: Okay.

Rick: See if it happens, wait a week.

Member: Oh yeah, that’s good and even just leave it at $10 because I can always pay Mike back but let’s say Mike Nickels signs up and a week later to see if it you know, renews for $10 for week number 2.

Rick: Right, exactly.

Member: And if it works, it works I’m paying him the $20 back or I can have you pay him back whatever.

Rick: Yeah, absolutely.

Member: Okay, cool. Okay so I don’t want to take any more time this is totally invaluable.

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