Finding a solution for your online needs can be a challenge. That’s why I’m sharing the nitty gritty all you need to know deets in this MemberVault Review.
If you’re looking for an online platform to host your online lead magnets, challenges, courses and memberships, MemberVault might be just what you’re looking for.
As someone who is always on the lookout for tech and tools to make my life as an entrepreneur easier (and calmer) I discovered MemberVault completely by chance from a post on Facebook, and I’m so glad I did.
What MemberVault Say…
We help businesses increase sales by using gamification, engagement tracking and a binge & buy marketplace.
I have written this review from a fan girl perspective because I love and use MV and recommend it to online business owners. Honest reviews are really important, so I have shared the good…and the not so good.
I’ve created a lot of content online over the past 10+ years and think I’m pretty well versed in sales funnels, lead magnets and recurring income via membership sites.
More on that later, but for now, let’s dive straight into this MemberVault review with the pros and cons!
Pros of MemberVault
One of the big wins for me was that MemberVault is free for your first 50 users.
There is nothing more annoying than some supposedly ‘free’ plans where you get really limited features; what I love about the MemberVault free plan is you get all the features of the paid plans AND you don’t have to add your credit card details.
They have currently have 3 pricing options:
- Forever Free: $0 – for up to 50 users
- Base $39 per month: for up to 1,000 users (up to 2,500 with Golden Hamster)
- Pro $69 per month: for up to 25,000 users (upgrade to 250,000 users for $99)
I used the free option to have a little play around and check I liked the platform, before upgrading to the bells and whistles Pro version once my user limit was reached.
Quick to Setup
This was something I was really impressed with. Having been used to creating courses using various themes, software and plugins installed on my WordPress website it was quite honestly a time-consuming, big fat headache, both for me and my tech guy at Inspo Media (transparency; also my husband).
Adding a course with modules, lessons, images, resources and quizzes could easily take a day, sometimes longer, to publish – yawn ?
With MV everything is so much quicker; create your module, add your lessons, move ’em around if you like, upload a course workbook, add a link to your Vimeo training video, add a couple of course questions and BAM, you’re done.
I’m pretty good at tech stuff, so managed to orientate myself around this platform and upload my first lead magnet in minutes.
If you’re not so hot with tech, there are lots of great resources to help you, but to be honest you probably won’t need them. Just create a MemberVault account for free and learn by experimenting and trying things out, keeping your product as ‘inactive’ until you’re ready to share it with the world.
Less ‘Tech Stress’
When hosting my own membership, I experienced occasional plugin conflicts which would cause lessons to disappear, text to go all funny, or in some cases, my site to completely crash.
This would take my web guy hours to fix and he’d often have to trawl through source code to find out what the issue was. Not ideal when you’re doing your best to be a calm entrepreneur! MV takes away the stress of self hosting your user content.
Dripped, Progressive & Bonus Options
When you first create a new product, you can choose whether it’s active, inactive or invisible.
One thing I really like is that you can also set the ‘type’.
The ‘Type’ options are Regular (no time or order forced), Timed Drip (modules released X days from signup), Date Dripped (modules released on specific days), Progressive (lessons and modules must be completed in order) and Bonus (unlocks automatically based on a users total EP).
This gives so much flexibility with course creation and challenges.
I was worried about the ‘flow’ with my website (see ‘Cons’ below), because you’re in effect taking people away from your website and onto the MV platform…
BUT there are lots of things you can do to make this a smooth process, and customisation is one of them.
There’s an option to name your site, add a site title, your brand colours, logo and custom links in the footer.
2020 Update! MemberVault now offers even more customisation options including:
- New ‘Welcome Area’ enabling you to upload a video, image or GIF and create a text welcome for your users – plus the option to add 2 call to action buttons
- New 3 column footer design enabling you to add in an about section, web links and social media links
- New notification bar enabling you to add in specific call to actions such as limited time discounts and offers
This is a huge part of running any kind of online community or platform. I love how MV suggest that you use the platform as an extension of your mailing list and if you want your audience to be engaged, gamification is a great way to do this.
With experience points (EP), members can earn points by DOING. I’m big on action taking, so this is a win for me and means results for my members.
There’s even a ‘Top 10 Leaderboard’ where members can see themselves ranked by EP (they have the option not to appear if they prefer).
The quizzes are also a big part of gamification and you can easily create essay style or multiple choice quizzes within minutes.
Outstanding Support & Community
If there’s one thing that MV is good at, it’s support. I love how the MemberVault Collaborative Facebook group is so friendly and there is always someone around to answer your questions.
The founders of MV, Mike and Erin, are IN THERE, like really in there…supporting their users, listening to feedback, sharing their wins and challenges authentically.
Transparency is something which is fundamental to me in online business and these guys tell is like it is.
If you know, you know ?
I couldn’t publish this MemberVault review without even mentioning it.
One thing that really helped me create my ideal MV setup was seeing all the winners in the Golden Hamster Hall of Fame. There are lots of inspiring Membervault examples to look at (including mine, obvs).
For those of you reading this who have the tech stuff sussed, don’t worry, there’s plenty you can be busying yourself with!
Link MV to your email provider (I’ve linked mine with ActiveCampaign) and create webhooks, actions and automations to your hearts content.
You can also add custom CSS to integrate a whole host of other features.
The MemberVault Affiliate Program
If you’re familiar with affiliate marketing, you’ll love MV’s generous recurring commission payments for their monthly plans.
One piece of advice though…only share stuff with your audience that you use and don’t buy a monthly plan unless you plan to actually use it. Affiliate marketing works best with transparency and authenticity #justsayin ✌
Transparency; if you decide to take out a free plan via the links in this MemberVault review and then upgrade, I will gain a commission.
Cons of MemberVault
You Don’t ‘Own’ It
MV is a stand alone platform, so you’ll never own it; a bit like using a platform like Shopify or Etsy to sell your wares.
On the plus side, you don’t have to manage your own hosting and the servers MV use are super quick and very secure. Content streaming on your own site needs a lot of bandwidth and when you have lots of users logged in at the same time, it can affect your site speed, unless you’re paying for top dollar hosting.
It’s Not On Your Site
I alluded to this in the Pros, but it has to be said, taking people away from your main website could be confusing for them.
There are lots of ways you can make this a seamless process, but the fact still remains that they’re having to click away. That’s why you need to ensure your MemberVault looks totes amaze – wow them with your content and they’ll soon get used to your setup.
It’s Not Quite an Industry Leader (yet!)
When comparing MV to more established platforms such as Kajabi or Thinkific, it’s got a bit of catching up to do.
Having said that, Mike and Erin are continually making changes and updates to make it even better, so I don’t think it’s far behind with its competitors.
The User Affiliate Program
Whilst MV use SamCart to track my affiliate referrals, it doesn’t yet have the same sophistication for my members ‘in house’.
There IS an affiliate option for members which tracks link clicks and commissions, but as things stand at the moment, you have to manually run reports and pay commissions.
I know MV are working on this, so by the time you’re reading this review, they might well have a more robust affiliate platform for your members to refer your wonderful courses and content.
In the meantime, I know other users who’ve linked MemberVault to ThriveCart to work around this
What I Know About Creating a Membership Site
Now that you’ve read my MemberVault review, you might well wonder what qualifies me to talk about memberships sites?!
Do a quick Google search and you’ll see there are lots of online memberships for business, in all kinds of weird and wonderful niches; you may even have joined one or two. I’m in members clubs myself and have run a couple of memberships sites in previous business. There’s also a Calmpreneur members’ club in the pipeline.
In 2017 I invested in the ‘TRIBE’ course by Stu McLaren. TRIBE helps people transform their knowledge and influence into recurring revenue by launching, growing and scaling 6, 7, and 8-figure membership sites.
I know all about the blood, sweat and tears which goes into building a membership site, getting members and creating content. Running a membership is by no means easy, but it does have some great advantages, else no one would do it!
Luckily, MemberVault makes the whole process a lot less stressful.
If running a membership is not for you, use MV for your challenges, courses, coaching and freebies.
Ready to go? Create your Forever FREE MemberVault Account here – no credit card required!
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this MemberVault review. I’ve tried to cover all the important points but if there’s anything else you’d like to know about my user experience, get it touch. I’m happy to answer any questions you might have. Head to the Calmpreneur Facebook group and tag me x