If you are an entrepreneur looking to jumpstart your online business, consider adding a subscription component to your website. Website subscription models are all the rage these days, offering both small and large businesses an easy monetizing strategy which simultaneously builds and solidifies customer relationships.
A Win-Win Combination
Subscriptions offer subscribers exclusive access to the content, products, or services you provide. Rather than selling items individually, you benefit from a recurring sale schema. Provided what you’re offering adds value to your customers, subscription models also build brand loyalty and offer opportunities for upselling or cross-selling other products or services. Satisfied customers are also more likely to renew or upgrade their subscriptions and refer their friends to your website.
Subscription Advantages for Customers
Receiving services or content one depends upon or enjoys on a regular basis is highly enticing. Other subscription benefits for consumers include:
- Access to content and special promotions
- Less expensive than buying outright
- Lower upfront costs (i.e. monthly or periodic payments)
- Option of renewing, upgrading, or canceling a subscription
- Belong to an online community of like-minded individuals
Subscription Advantages for Entrepreneurs
There are two primary types of website subscription models: those which are monetization-oriented and those which drive traffic. Benefits of introducing a subscription component to your website include:
- Recurring, reliable source of revenue
- Facilitates customer relationship management
- Builds a loyal base of returning customers
- Predictable, measurable, and constant (monthly or periodic) revenue stream
- Payment received in advance
- Satisfied customers will likely extend their subscriptions
Popular Subscription Models
Here is a brief rundown of today’s most popular website subscription schemas. As you can see, many of these strategies are easy to implement and cost next to nothing. They are applicable to any type of business and are perfect for entrepreneurs.
- Freemium Model: Your website offers free content with an added “subscribers-only” section, providing paying subscribers access to restricted features (i.e., archives or special promotions).
- Newsletter/Magazine Models: Access to a digital or print newsletter/magazine is provided to subscribers only. Newsletters are typically a page long; magazine issues tend to be longer. Both newsletters and magazines should be issued regularly and be easily viewed in HTML or downloaded in PDF format.
- Membership Model: Paid members enjoy exclusive access to a library of information on topics related to your business. This user-driven, content-based schema also creates an online community of members who share a common interest or passion.
- Blog Model: Readers who subscribe to your blog become part of a community and are welcome to post comments. In addition to their more personal angle, blogs are a great platform for introducing new products or services, disseminating news virally, announcing speaking engagements/book deals/upcoming events, and sharing company news or information.
If you’re uncertain about handling the nitty-gritty of adding subscriptions to your website by yourself, simply turn to the pros for help. Nowadays there are scores of professional e-commerce services which will work with you to enhance your monetization strategies and ensure that your online business is safe and secure. Alternatively, you can invest in subscription management software, which automatically manages all aspects of a subscription model – including billing, managing recurring payments and the canceling/upgrading/changing of subscription plans, providing multiple online payment options, and more. All that’s left for you to do is provide an excellent service or product, offer it to subscribers, and enjoy reaping the rich rewards.
About Author: Susie Brown is a FastUpFront Blog contributor and business author. Fastupfront offers small business cash for existing businesses based on future sales. Apply online for a business cash advance from FastUpFront.com.