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Category: Business

How I Set Up Our Membership Website

Outside of coaching people along their fitness and health journey, I also run a few websites. The one we’re featuring today — — is the most intricate.

What purpose does the site serve?

This site acts as our membership, premium content subscription product. Our Premium Members get access to all the content on the site (mostly video), have access to a private Facebook group for discussion, and are allowed the ability to comment on posts in the website.

Who is our product for?

We have a tight niche in the fitness industry around deep continued education for coaches. It is not well-suited for people who are just getting into personal training.

Software We Use

The site is run on WordPress. This was the content management system (CMS) with which I was most familiar. There are many plugins that have helped my limited coding knowledge really speed things up.

There’s a membership plugin called MemberMouse (affiliate link) that protects pages from the people not paying and manages all the member billing and account usage. This allows me to customize each page based on someone’s access rights:

A screenshot of what our Premium Members will see

Members see a video

A screenshot of what visitors to our website will see

Visitors see a sales pitch

We upload our paid videos to Vimeo (affiliate link) and “hide them from”. They get embedded on each page on our site. This is for hosting our videos and let’s us only allow them on certain domains, i.e.

We have free videos on a YouTube page. We will also upload those to our website. This is for marketing purposes, mostly, because we needed some ways for people to try us out.

Web Hosting

To run a website, there needs to be a computer somewhere to serve the website to people when they type in your URL (e.g. This is called this web hosting. Our site is hosted by DreamHost, using their middle-of-the-road DreamPress hosting (affiliate link).

Full disclosure, though, I now use Flywheel (affiliate link) for hosting my other websites. Their app just makes everything really easy.

Social Media

We do not use Instagram, Snapchat, etc. for our company and don’t do much with our Facebook page, which is different than the Facebook group mentioned before. It’s just too much work for too little reward on our too little time.

Biggest Challenges

The hardest stuff is always business-related, not software related. DreamHost and MemberMouse have been really helpful in offering support when I need help (that’s one of the things you pay for). I don’t regret using either company.

The other main issue is just with juggling the software. WordPress has standards for plugin developers to follow, but not every piece of software will run together. Picture even a big tech company, and I can tell you that every time they introduce something new, no matter how small, it breaks something else. Software engineers are on call just like medical professionals.

Monthly Cost

$16.59 / month billed annually (Vimeo)
$19.95 / month (DreamPress web hosting)
$0 (WordPress)
$19.95 / month (MemberMouse plugin)
$0 (YouTube)

Which comes out to…

$56.49 / month cost for software

You could get cheaper web hosting (affiliate link) and save $10-15 / month. You could also get a slightly cheaper Vimeo plan and save $5 / month.

But that’s how we do it!

Any questions? Leave them in the Comments section below.

My Biggest Programming Pivot Since Moving to the Bay

It’s important to identify what you cannot do.

This post is NOT a comparison of private sector coaching and collegiate coaching. I have not worked in a collegiate setting.

This post is NOT a comparison of training athletes general population clients.

What’s the biggest change I’ve had to make? How has my career shifting after leaving the private sector (and Indianapolis) and moving into corporate wellness (mostly).
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You’re a Trip, Man

Have you ever gone on a cross-country road trip? Just you, a bag of clothes, and a car?

Have you ever spent extended time alone? On purpose?

A few years ago, I got in my car and started driving west. I’m a creature of comfort. My family is easy to be around. My friends and I have great discussion. I was coaching in a gym that meant so much to me and was a HUGE piece of my development… both as a human, and a coach.

But I needed to break the cycle. I needed to get more UNcomfortable. If I didn’t, I would never grow… at least as much as I expected from myself.

I drove out to Denver, CO from Indy in two days. I stayed at a sketchy hotel on the way out there (there was a sign that said, “Best Western is not responsible if your things are stolen”). I met some Airbnb people and finally saw what mountains look like (this just in: they’re gorgeous). I even went HIKING.

Now that trip… THAT was an experience.

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What is the single most important goal of the site? Do you want this to supplement a physical location? Or is this more of an online-only project? Do you have a compelling offer for new customers? Do you have testimonials to show people? Do you have pictures you can use without violating copyright? Do you have someone to write compelling sales text? I can help you work through these questions if we do end up working together.