Subscription Websites: Ideas to Inspire You to Build Your Own Membership Site (+ Examples)

by | Jan 13, 2023 | How To, Resources

Subscription websites aren’t a fad anymore.

In 2021, the average US consumer spent more than $270/ month on subscriptions alone. It’s no wonder, then, that global digital subscription economy is predicted to reach $1,500 billion by 2025.

It’s easy to see why subscription businesses are gaining ground. They’re a win-win for everyone: consumers get access to products and services easily, more affordably, and with maximum convenience; businesses reap the benefits of increased revenue, predictable cash flow, and customer loyalty. Even the environment can benefit from circular and subscription-based business models, as less waste is created and products are used more sustainably.

For entrepreneurs, subscription services offer an especially attractive business model. Subscription websites make it easy for businesses to manage customers and payment plans with minimal effort and maximum efficiency. Plus, they can be set up quickly and require only minimal overhead costs.

What are some subscription websites ideas to help you build your membership site? We’ve compiled a few of our favorites to get your creative juices flowing. Keep reading to find out more.

Online Courses

Online courses are an increasingly popular way to learn, as they help people make sense of the noise and stay on track with their learning goals. The idea is simple: customers pay a monthly fee to access an online course library filled with learning materials and resources.

By creating such a platform, you can provide more flexible learning opportunities for people who cannot attend traditional classes in person. This type of subscription website is especially useful for content creators like bloggers, podcasters, and instructors who are looking to monetize their content.

Successful online course platforms include Teachable, Thinkific, Coursera, and Udemy. Some course websites are not necessarily platforms, though (for example, Copyblogger).

Membership Sites

Membership Websites

Membership websites are not always subscription-based, but they can be frequently considered as “subscription websites”. However, they can cover a very wide range of industries. For instance, you could create a membership website for book lovers, fitness aficionados, developers who want to perfect their skills, people who want to learn how to cook, and so on. Virtually, there’s a membership website idea for almost every type of activity, hobby, or learning niche in the world.

Examples of famous subscription-based membership websites include Fizzle, Scott’s Cheap Flights, Food Blogger Pro, and more.

The possibilities are endless when it comes to subscription-based websites. If you’re looking for a way to create an additional source of revenue and build customer loyalty, then building a subscription website may be the right choice. All you need is some inspiration, creativity and good planning to make your business a success.

And if you’re lacking inspiration, take a look at our list of 35 highly successful membership site ideas to get you started.

Subscription Boxes

Subscription box-based websites and businesses sell theme-based products on a recurrent basis. They could send a “box” every month, quarter, or even weekly, and every time it would include products in the same niche. For example, they could include a specific range of cosmetics (e.g., skincare), food and produce (e.g., to make your meals), books (e.g., in a specific genre), and any other types of products you can think of.

Examples of subscription boxes and delivery services include HelloFresh, BlueApron, Graze, and NatureBox.

Grocery Subscription Website

Gaming Platforms

Gaming platforms can also work on a subscription model. For instance, some of them offer their customers with a wide range of games they can download and play (legally), for an advantageous price.

Examples of such websites include PlayStation Now, Xbox Game Pass, and the Epic Games Store.

Software-as-a-Service Platforms

Software-as-a-service (SaaS) platforms offer customers access to software applications managed by a company and hosted on their servers. These applications can include cloud storage solutions, sophisticated analytics tools, customer relationship management (CRM) systems, and any type of application that can be used to manage data efficiently.

Examples of subscription-based SaaS platforms include Salesforce, HubSpot, and Slack.

Fitness Apps & Subscriptions

Fitness apps and subscriptions can also be considered subscription websites (or subscription apps, if they only function on mobile apps.) These websites bring together people who want to work out, eat healthily, and improve their lifestyles.

Examples of fitness platforms include Beachbody on Demand, Peloton, and Nike Training Club.

Fitness Subscription Website

Streaming Services

Streaming services are very popular because they offer people access to a lot of content for a modest price. Essentially, when you buy a subscription on streaming subscription websites, you get access to all the content they offer for a fraction of the price you’d pay for one or two titles there.

Famous examples of streaming services include Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, and Disney+ (for movies), and Spotify and Apple Music (for music.)

Travel Services and Travel Groups

Travel services and travel groups can also be regarded as subscription websites. These companies offer their customers access to a variety of discounts, deals, and offers on various travels and holidays. Furthermore, they can offer them unique insights and content into how to make the most out of their vacations (e.g., where to go, when to do it, and so on)

Examples of such companies include Expedia, Turo, Airbnb Experiences, Groupon Getaways, and many more.

How to Build Your Subscription Website

The good news is that you too, can tap into the huge subscription economy market. Building subscription websites (such as a membership site, for example) is easy when you have the right tools. All you need is to choose a reliable website builder, decide on your subscription model, and start building!

When it comes to subscription website builders, there are a lot of options available. You can create a WordPress website and get a plug-in like Ultimate Membership Pro to manage your subscription.

When deciding on the right pricing model for subscription websites, there are several options to consider. You could offer memberships based on monthly fees, yearly fees, or both. Or you could set up a pay-per-view model for your content or a one-time payment option.

Once you’ve decided on the structure of your subscription website, it’s time to start building. You can set up everything from pages and content to membership plans and payment gateways with ease.

Remember to also market your subscription website. You can start by creating social media profiles, optimizing your website for SEO, and running paid ad campaigns.


Subscription websites are becoming increasingly popular in today’s economic climate. They offer customers access to content and services that they would have needed to spend a lot of money to access. As long as you have the right tools, creating your subscription website is fairly easy and it can provide you with a steady, healthy stream of income.

Subscription Websites: FAQs

What is a subscription website?

A subscription website is a platform where customers pay a fee to access exclusive content, services or products.

How do I create an online subscription?

If you want to create an online subscription on your WordPress website, all you have to do is download a special plugin (such as Ultimate Membership Pro, for example), to manage the memberships. Once you download the plugin, you can connect your website with a payment processor, set up your pricing plans, and start accepting payments.

What are the three types of subscription?

The three main types of subscription include monthly payment, yearly payment, and pay-per-view. Depending on the type of content or service you’re offering, you can choose the most suitable subscription plan.

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