How to Start a Membership Business

How to Start a Membership Business

One of the questions we get asked most frequently at SubHub is “what are the good membership website ideas?”

The answer is very simple: whatever your passion is.

You can create a membership model based on any type of business, but the one thing you don’t want to do is choose one just because you think it might make money.

There is no way your website will generate paying members if you are not passionate about the subject of your membership business.

Yes, you can’t just be passionate about making money!

There are dozens of successful membership sites in the niches below, which clearly suggest that there is money to be made from these subjects.  But keep in the mind that the owners of these sites are truly passionate about what they do, and truly want to help others. So before you start, just make sure with a quick check that you also fall into that category!

Having said all that, however, just because you’re passionate about your membership business idea doesn’t mean it will be easy to be profitable, either. Let’s face it, successful membership website niches are also competitive. There will be competition in whichever niche you choose. Your job is to show your potential members how you are different from the competition.

Here are just a few examples of membership website ideas to inspire you, from SubHub clients who at one time were just like you – trying to determine how to start a membership business. They have since developed their audiences and built successful membership websites.

If you want some SubHub examples, check out our Case Studies.

Subject #1 – Weight Loss, Fitness and Exercise

Diets and fitness are evergreen subjects. They will always find a willing audience happy to pay for advice.

fitness membership business
yoga membership business

Example membership site in this niche – and

Subject #2 – Health & Meditation

Closely aligned to #1, spiritual and mental health membership models are extremely popular. If this is your niche, you can go with a combination of audio files, videos, checklists, e-books and any number of other resources for your members. In addition, meditation and self-growth classes are excellent candidates for evergreen courses.

health meditation membership niche
spirituality online membership

Example membership sites in this niche: and

Subject #3 – Business Coaching

Business coaching is big business these days, especially online business coaching. If you have expertise in digital marketing of business services or products, this could be your niche.

business coaching online
beauty business tips membership

Example membership sites in this niche – and

Subject #4 – Online Magazine

Online magazine subscriptions are another way to monetize your expertise. Membership levels might include a free newsletter round up of the latest publications, access to current editions, and access to archives.

Example membership sites in this niche: and

online magazine publishing business
online magazine niche - returning citizens

Subject #5 – Sales & Marketing

Online marketing has become a sector in its own right, with dozens of membership websites emerging over the last five years. They look at every niche marketing subject including SEO, SEM, social media marketing, pay per click, etc. Sales skills, whether for an online business or not, are always in demand.

marketing niche for business membership
sales niche for membership business

Example membership sites in this niche: and

Subject #6 – Investment Coaching

Investment tips are a great use of a membership website, and something very much in demand. You can share reports, performance spreadsheets, trade examples, screen shares, videos, personal coaching and more. SubHub’s built-in forum lets your subscribers hold discussions to discuss tips and investment methods.

investment coaching
investment reports - membership business

Example membership site in this niche – and

Subject #7 – Life Coaching

The subject of dating and relationships continues to grow as a viable membership business. With couples glued to their phones and computers all day and into the evening, the question of how to maintain a relationship becomes more important. Similarly, stress management and self-improvement/personal empowerment niches offer a huge opportunity to start a new membership business.

life coaching business
relationships & marriage - membership website

Example membership sites in this niche: and

Subject #8 – Online Training Courses

Online training is one of the most burgeoning fields on the internet right now. SubHub’s course editor makes it easy to set up drip or evergreen classes to share your expertise, whatever niche you are in.

online training drip courses
online training evergreen courses

Example membership site in this niche: and TRE Certification Training

Subject #9 – Children’s Education

We all know that educational budgets can limit the abilities of teachers and educators to do what they would consider their best work. Membership models can supplement those efforts with materials and coaching help.

educational help for teachers - membership website
education niche membership business

Example membership sites in this niche – and

Subject #10 – Faith & Ministry

Websites that are offer assistance or trainings on faith-based teachings are becoming more and more popular.

ministry help - membership website subject

Example membership sites in this niche: and



Of course, you do NOT need to write about one of the subjects above to create a successful subscription or membership website. With global reach and a deep knowledge of where your customers can be found, even the most specialist subject can become a successful membership site.

Paid-for content revenues are growing across the world.

There has never been a better time to start a subscription or membership website.

Start today! Open a free SubHub trial website: