Adding membership capabilities to your WordPress website allows you to better serve users in a variety of ways. For example, having a member account can make tasks like adding and replying to comments more straightforward. Site owners can use memberships to keep sensitive content out of public view or even monetize content.
Here are some free plugins you can use to bring memberships to your WordPress website. Some cater to niche uses, while others aim to provide a full suite of functionality.
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User Access Manager provides an easy way to set permissions on your website’s content. Create a user group based on WordPress Roles & Capabilities and use the handy checkboxes to assign pages, categories or individual posts to that group. Users and content may also be assigned to more than one group.
Members is a complete solution for user and content control. You can edit and create new user roles, assign multiple roles to users and adjust content permissions – all in a slick GUI.
WP Members allows users to register, login and edit their accounts on the front end of your site – keeping them away from your WordPress dashboard. Registrations can be held for admin approval, adding an extra layer of security. The ability to set content permissions is also included.
Peter’s Login Redirect lets you create login/logout/registration redirects for users by roles, capabilities or specific individuals. Very handy for those times when you want users to see specific content after they perform a member-related action.
Many times, site owners don’t want lower level users to have access to the WordPress dashboard. Remove Dashboard Access can be used to redirect users with specific roles or capabilities to another URL and keep them away from the dashboard.
User Submitted Posts allows users to create content on the front end of your site. They can even upload images. Admins can set the status of submitted posts to draft, published or set to auto-publish after that user has a specific number of previously approved posts. There are lots of options to set things up to fit your needs.
ZM Ajax Login and Register is a flexible plugin that enables users to (you guessed it) login and register on the front end of your site. The login form appears either as a modal window or directly on a page and can be customized to match your theme. There is also support for logging in with a Facebook account. A simple registration form can be added via a modal window or a page.
Sell memberships on your site with Membership & Content Restriction. You can create multiple levels of memberships, each with their own pricing. The plugin also includes member management and content restrictions. Lots of commercial add-ons are available to enable more functionality.
Multisite User Sync will allow user accounts to function across multiple sites in a WordPress Multisite network. Simply install the plugin and either network activate if you want user accounts to work across all sites or activate only on the network sites you want to share user accounts.
Designed for creating advanced user community sites, Ultimate Member features front end registration/login/profiles, the ability to create a custom registration form and content restriction. You can also conditionally display menus, customize email templates and display a member directory. There are several add-ons available to enable WooCommerce integration, private messaging and more.
Membership has its Benefits
The needs of membership sites can be very unique. Each has their own goals, challenges and desired functionality. Fortunately, there are WordPress plugins available for just about every type of membership site imaginable.