WP User Manager WordPress Membership Plugin

Intrigued by the idea of kludging the Under Construction plugin’s capabilities to do a simple membership site, I started looking into other free plugins for creating and running a membership website. I just had one requirement: The software has to be fairly simple to setup and run.

I have worked with WordPress membership plugins before (from the official WordPress Plugin Directory), the very popular highly-rated ones. They worked well, but frankly, they were beasts to work with—configuration settings and options coming out the wazoo that even setting up what in my mind’s just a simple site ends up being a major project. This time around, I searched for something simpler, but good.

WP User Manager seems to fit the bill very well.

Granted, there really are a lot of details to attend to when setting up a WordPress-based membership site. But what impressed me with WP User Manager is that it seems to achieve that balance of features and ease of configuration and use quite well. For what I consider standard membership site functionality, anyway. What you envision may be different.

But this thing seems to have everything I’m looking for: member signups, profiles, private member areas, emails, etc., all integrated with the WordPress CMS’s built-in feature of managing multiple users and “roles.” WP User Manager even adds a roles editor that lets you enable/disable capabilities for each role, which is a mighty useful tool for WordPress itself, not just for a membership site.

It’s very important to note, however, that I’m talking about a free membership site. If you want a site that charges folks for joining, it looks like WP User Manager does that by integrating with WooCommerce, and requires an add-on that you’ll need to pay for (and which I haven’t tested).

Play with it, and see if it suits the kind of membership site you have in mind.

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