One of the more common requests I’m receiving from clients lately is to create a private, members only area for their website. Frankly, I’m starting to enjoy the setup and the challenges that each specific member area brings.
Some organizations want to have a simple setup, with a single password protecting a single page of sensitive content. Others want every person who accesses the content to have their own username and password. Either way, it’s easy to achieve.
What kinds of things can you do with a Members Only Area?
- Bulletin Boards – A great way for members of your organization to exchange ideas in a moderated format.
- Event Registrations – When there are member specific events, have folks register and pay for it online! This is of course something you may also want to do for the public side of your site for open events.
- File Sharing – You can share files to your entire membership or just specific members.
- Mass Emails – That’s right, you can send mass emails out to your members directly through the website admin area. It can be a great cost-saver for your organization. This can be accomplished if you’re using WordPress as your site’s platform.
- News – This is a great spot to place news and promotions aimed at your members.
- Social Networking – Using the BuddyPress framework, your members can have their own “profiles” and interact with each other – very similar to Facebook. More complex than a bulletin board, this option allows for the addition of new features such as project management.
- Support – Make it easy for members to get the help they need. A simple setup could be an FAQs section and a contact form. A more complex solution could include a support ticket system.
That’s really only scratching the surface of what can be accomplished. The nice thing is that the site can be customized to fit your exact needs.