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Its strength lies in its ‘Add On’ system, which allows you to optionally install and activate a wide selection of features and functionality — some of which you simply won’t find in any other membership solution on the market today.

The ability to create member directories, have unique member homepages, offer gift memberships or enable members to sign up with their social media profiles — to name but a few of the types of add-ons available — gives you a wealth of flexibility in tailoring the plugin to best suit your needs.

One of my major gripes with this plugin is the way in which you protect content.

This is done either by using post categories, or by designating required membership levels on a per-page or per-post basis.

While this will satisfy the most basic of needs, it becomes a bit of a nightmare if you’re dealing with large amounts of content that use WordPress ‘Pages’ instead of ‘Posts’ (i.e. if you create your content before installing your plugin, and you’re using pages you will need to go through one by one and set membership levels) — or, even worse, if you’re using custom post types.

Ease of Use

By focusing on the essential functionality and saving all of the ‘fancy stuff’ (technical term) for add-ons, Paid Memberships Pro becomes relatively simple to set up.

You’re prompted by on-screen messages that take you through the required settings, and those messages will hang around until you’ve done the bare minimum needed to make the plugin functional, ensuring you won’t miss anything.

Membership levels are fairly easy to set up, yet despite their simplicity you also can do a lot of cool stuff with them such as charge a higher initial fee, limit the billing cycle and set a trial period; some of which is not always possible with many membership plugins. The fact that you can simply duplicate your membership levels is a handy time-saver too.

Integrations

One of the main uses of the add-on system is to enable integrations with a variety of different services; and the decision not to include any email marketing platform support into the core plugin package is an unusual but, in my opinion, smart one since it keeps things simple from the off.

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