4 Ways Digital Membership Owners Are Losing Money

Congratulations—you’ve officially opened the doors to your membership program. So far, so good, right? Potential members are visiting your site, you’re gaining traction, and people are actually clicking that dreamy little button that says “Join Now”—but really screams CHA-CHING to you and your team.

All things considered, your membership is off to a great start. Except, what if you could be making more money? What if you’re leaving money on the table in more ways than one? Chances are, you ARE but the good news is that it doesn’t have to stay that way. Continue reading for our top 4 ways digital membership owners are losing money—and how to fix it with a few simple steps.

The Abandoned Cart Sequence

Picture it: a potential customer visits your website, scours your sales page, starts to enter their billing information, and then BAM, they close their browser without actually completing the process of joining your membership. As frustrating as this is, it’s more common than you may think AND it doesn’t mean they’re not interested.

In fact, there are many logical reasons why someone may not pull the trigger on their first visit to your checkout page: distractions at work and home, not having their payment information handy, or the most common, reservations about the investment.

Enter your abandoned cart sequence.

With this handy funnel, you can re-engage warm leads, helping them to overcome their objections and navigating them back to the purchase.

Important reminders about the abandoned cart sequence are:

  • GDPR (that’s the General Data Protection Regulation) and other similar policies around the world prohibit lengthy follow-up sequences—keep this funnel to 2-3 emails and the copy to the point. (NOTE: Remember that your digital membership is likely available to anyone in the world, so it’s important to adhere to digital best practices beyond your own country’s regulations.)
  • This is your opportunity to speak to their pain points and answer any lingering questions that may be standing in the way of the big YES! While you likely *cough, should* have these in your FAQs, pull a few of the top FAQs out and address them in the email. You can also link directly to your FAQs so they can review anything you may not have discussed.
  • While the idea of joining your membership is still fresh in their minds, use this opportunity to seal the deal with glowing social proof. Video testimonials and hard numbers highlighting how your membership changed their business (ie: I 10X my coaching clients after joining XYZ!) are huge motivators for potential customers on the fence.

No matter what you do, always include a clear CTA in every email for them to return to cart and join your membership. You’d be surprised how just that simple reminder is all it takes.

The Onboarding Sequence

Now, THIS is exciting! Not only have you opened your digital doors, but customers are flooding in. Don’t take the next few steps lightly; this is your chance to welcome your new members (aka paying customers) and build excitement for their new journey (aka an investment with YOU!)

This is also a great time to set expectations so there aren’t any surprises for them along the way that may turn their experience from good to bad. An Onboarding Sequence can be a few simple emails that include:

  • General Housekeeping: Login information and next steps
  • Get Started Details: Do you have a Welcome Video or Intro Guide? Direct them there. If not, link to the first module or step inside your program. Remember, lead them in the direction you want them to go.
  • Provide Support: Nothing spells disaster quite like a new customer who doesn’t have the answers they need. A quick email with simple customer service steps can go a long way.

The Cancellation Sequence

Yes, it’s sad but true, not all members will stay forever. For starters, take a deep breath—churn is a normal part of memberships. That doesn’t mean you can’t make one (or two) last-ditch and whole-hearted attempts to keep them.

Attempts to keep members from canceling can include:

  • An email that acts to remind them of the benefits they’re losing, the success others have had, and a powerful statement about seeing this experience or training through. We want to evoke major FOMO while they second guess their decision to leave.
  • A last chance email to stay—What if their ‘aha’ moment is just around the corner? Can’t leave now, right? Give them the big sign they’re looking for.

That said, if they DO follow through with the cancellation, here are 3 must-take steps that serve both you and your customer:

  1. A cancellation survey: this is a vital tool for identifying valid reasons members may cancel their memberships with you. With this information, you can fine-tune your content, systems, and communication. (NOTE: Make this optional to help reduce support tickets.)
  2. A confirmation email with important details such as the end of term dates for their records.
  3. A sincere thank you and farewell message once their end-of-term date has been reached. Let them leave on a positive note—you never know what the future holds.

The Payment Failure Sequence

If you thought the Abandoned Cart sequence was important, then watch out, the Payment Failure may become your new BFF. There’s nothing worse than a paying customer becoming a past (or FREE) customer simply because you didn’t have proper systems in place for when payment failure occurs. Most frequently, this is due to an expired payment method on file.

A bulletproof payment failure sequence can include:

  • A system for identifying and reminding customers that their current payment method is set to expire. This will prompt them to address it BEFORE it becomes an issue. If your system does not do this, consider setting up a reminder email that the payment is coming due soon and action needs to be taken to update the card.
  • Once the payment method has expired, a short and sweet (and maybe funny) email letting them know the payment failed is the first step.
  • Next, you have to start getting a little serious—it’s time to let them know their membership will be paused or canceled soon if they don’t update their payment method. How many chances you give them is ultimately up to you but remember, if they’re still in without a payment, you’re giving away your content for FREE.
  • The dreaded “Account Canceled” email; no one wants to do it but it’s a necessary part of business, right?

As you can see, getting customers to click “Join Now” isn’t the only step when setting up a membership. There are big opportunities to convert customers post-sales page visit just by setting up an effective Abandoned Cart sequence. Want to keep them once they’re in? Tighten up your Onboarding, Cancellation, and Payment Failure sequences, too. Or don’t—you know, if losing customers (and money) isn’t a big deal to you. That’s a joke, if you got this far, we’re pretty sure you’re a digital membership owner who’s serious about their bottom line AND providing top-notch value to your members. Bravo!