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Is A Membership Site Right For You?

June 11, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 171

Lately I have had several requests for information from affiliate marketers wanting to start membership sites as a way to earn a passive income.

For those that have no idea what passive income is; basically it is regular payments received monthly as opposed to receiving commissions from a one of sale.

When looking at starting a membership site the first thing you need to determine is what you have to offer that will keep members paying a fee to belong to your site?

The main questions to ask yourself are:

• Do you have something unique that will warrant people paying you every month for as long as you supply a service?

• Can you afford the time to create new and fresh content for your members?

• Do you have a product that you can break down into weekly or monthly lessons that people will follow?

• Can you supply fresh content every month to your members?

For either a paid or free membership site you need to offer new and fresh content to retain your members.

If you have a unique product that you feel will be perfect for a membership site then investigate running a membership site further.

Before you even start looking at running a membership site you should be producing quality products, articles and information that you give away for free, so people get to know you and become followers. If you have no followers you won't get far with a membership site.

In other words market yourself and part of your products for free so you have a history and followers long before looking at starting an income producing membership site.

Monthly Income

I have had many affiliate marketer's tell me that their aim is to create a number of sites the will bring in regular or passive income.

Many affiliate marketers (and gurus) define passive income as income that does not require active participation, as in a set and forget system. Spend the time setting up a system at the start of a project, create a lot of autoresponder messages or upload untold files to a password protected website, get members to sign up and watch the money come in monthly.

In theory it sounds like the ideal business model to create something that will bring in money month after month. But is a membership site the way to go?

You can have members who sign up to your paid membership site but unless the content is current and up to the minute what's going to keep them?

Your preloaded files can be out of date the next day.

For example if your content is about internet marketing and how to get high listings in the search engines what happens if things change. You have created lots of files about how to get top listings on Google and they are being sent out to your members via an autoresponder weekly or monthly. Looks good, this month everybody is happy, you don't need to do any more work just watch the money roll in from your members. Suddenly Google changes the rules (as happened with the Google Panda and Penguin updates) and all your preloaded information that your members are paying for is out of date.

What happens unless you are in the know on top of things, you suddenly lose members and your creditability in one go.

Membership sites are a lot of work - you need high quality up to the minute content to retain member's day in and day out. Your content always needs updating, if you run a forum of blog as part of your membership site it needs to be moderated daily and to retain members you need to be consistently online and in touch with them. Membership software is costly and your site always needs policing for unauthorized users.

While there are many successful membership sites I believe that as an affiliate marketer you can make more money in the long run by promoting affiliate programs that have recurring payments. This allows you to receive recurring commissions without having to do all the work involved in running a membership site.

Residual income affiliate programs create passive income, you setup your squeeze page, promote it and get paid over and over again.

To find these types of programs search Google for "Recurring Affiliate Program."

Alice Logan is a business mentor who is passionate about online marketing. Visit her at for practical advice and guidance.

Source: EzineArticles
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