MemberPress vs WishList Member: Comparison (March 2020)

We are doing a comparison of the 2 of the most famous WordPress membership plugins: MemberPress vs WishList Member.

MemberPress vs WishList Member – overview

About WishList Member

WishList Member is 15 years in the game already, and at the moment when this is written. That means, WishList Member team have plenty of knowledge and experience on what works and what doesn’t work when it comes to membership sites.

Also, it has been completely re-developed and adapted to catch up with competitors like MemberPress, and keeps rapidly evolving with new features & integrations (version 3.0+). Taking a step like this, and almost starting from scratch, surely requires some bravery from the CEO. However, that tells us that this product is going to be around for a long time more. Even better, WishList Member team is there to listen to their customers’ needs and implement them, even when it means taking scary steps and almost starting from scratch.

About MemberPress

MemberPress is one of the most robust membership plugins for years. It’s been on the market for a long time, and it has almost become an industry standard.

Many membership site owners who are looking for more complex membership levels structure, as well as more control, decide to get MemberPress in their tech stack.

You can’t go wrong with MemberPress, especially since these guys were always the first to make improvements that go in hand with various and ever-changing legal regulations in online business.

WishList Member vs MemberPress: PRO’s and CON’s

WishList Member PRO’s:

  1. Easy & quick to set up;
  2. “Magazine” subscription model (restrict access to content published before a member registered);
  3. Affordable price
  4. Exists for a long time and is constantly improved;
  5. Built-in login page templates & customization;
  6. Integrates with lots of payment gateways and carts;
  7. Great support;
  8. Zapier integration;

WishList Member CON’s:

  1. No coupons supported;
  2. Members can’t manage their subscriptions or update their credit card info (!);
  3. Switching between memberships/subscriptions is possible, but may not be straightforward;
  4. It does not have a ‘built-in’ affiliate program feature (but you can use a 3rd party affiliate solution);
  5. Doesn’t really have a true content dripping feature;
  6. Poor documentation;

MemberPress PRO’s:

  1. Robust and flexible;
  2. Membership groups, pricing tables, upgrade/downgrade with optional payment proration, coupons;
  3. It has a plan that comes with Affiliate Royale plugin;
  4. Exists for a long time and is constantly improved;
  5. Members have their own Account page to manage their information;
  6. Members can manage their subscriptions or update their credit card info;
  7. Great support and plugin stability;
  8. Good documentation;
  9. Zapier integration;

MemberPress CON’s:

  1. Learning curve;
  2. Very basic look of its forms on the front-end (but, they can be styled with the help of CSS);
  3. No WooCommerce integration;
  4. Longer time needed to set it up and launch the membership site;
  5. The price of the license increases frequently. Additionally, keep in mind that the price goes up after the first year of subscription;
  6. Not as quick to add new features to the plugin;

MemberPress vs WishList Member: payment integrations

WishList Member payment integrations

  • PayPal Payments Standard;
  • Recurly;
  • Infusionsoft/Keap;
  • Premium Web Cart;
  • Red Oak Cart;
  • 1ShoppinCart (API);
  • Stripe;
  • PayPal Payments Pro;
  • eWay;
  • JVZoo;
  • Pin Payments;
  • SamCart;
  • Thrive Cart;
  • PayPal Express Checkout;
  • UltraCart;
  • Authorize.net;
  • 2Checkout;
  • ClickBank;
  • Cydec.

MemberPress payment integrations

  • Stripe;
  • PayPal Payments Standard;
  • Authorize.net;
  • PayPal Express Checkout;
  • Offline payment (can be approved either manually or automatically).

WishList Member vs MemberPress: Comparison Table

Easy and quick to set up:

Members can easily manage their subscriptions on their own:

Coupons:

Payment integrations other than Stripe, PayPal & Authorize.net:

"True" content dripping:

Zapier integration:

WooCommerce integration:

Robust and flexible:

Credit card expiry automatic email notifications for members:

Integrates with InfusionSoft/Keap:

Built-in login page templates:

Great support:

Well documented:

Taxes/VAT built-in feature:

Corporate/Umbrella Accounts:

Easy and pro-rated upgrades/downgrades, bundles:

“Magazine” subscription model
(restrict access to content published before a member registered)

So, which one is the right one: MemberPress or WishList Member?

WishList Member is right for you if:

  • Your membership structure is simple;
  • You are not technical and you are going to set up the membership site on your own;
  • You’re using payment gateways other than Stripe, PayPal and Authorize.net.

MemberPress is right for you if:

  • Your membership structure is a bit complex (i.e. you will have upgrades/downgrades between membership levels, coupons, promo trial periods, and/or bundles);
  • You are techy, and don’t mind diving in documentation from time to time, or hiring a professional to set it up for you;
  • You want better control of your website, as well as promotions, marketing and user access.

Conclusion

Even though these 2 membership plugins are one of the best in the industry, they certainly have significant differences.

In fact, some of them may be quite a deal-breaker. For example: the ability to integrate your membership plugin with Infusionsoft/Keap, or WooCommerce (which is possible with WishList Member, and not MemberPress). Or, the possibility to send automated credit card expiry notice to members or create umbrella (aka corporate) accounts (which is possible with MemberPress, but not with WishList Member).

So, make sure you get enough information before making the decision. Also get familiar with the limitations of each options, before jumping into a purchase.


Furthermore, if you have any questions, drop them in the comments below. Likewise, if you’ve found out that there is a new feature, or that anything from this article has changed – I’d be happy to hear about it (and update this article with the latest info).

P.S. Did you know we’ve been professionally building membership sites for clients for over 3 years? In other words, if you need any help with your membership site, get in touch here. Additionally, take a peek at our portfolio here.

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