WordPress has recently launched the “Recurring Payments” feature with premium plans; an exclusive that blog creators, business users, and publishers on the platform will benefit from. In collaboration with Stripe, an online payment processing company, WordPress is stepping up its monetization schemes for all content creators.
Say Hello to the Recurring Payment by WordPress and Stripe
So what is recurring payments? With this feature, content creators can now collect revenue from site visitors. But only those with a paid WordPress plan can utilize this brand new feature. Besides them, people who own self-hosted websites can bring the feature into play as long as they have the Jetpack plugin installed.
The feature is fairly simple and straightforward – it’s a way for bloggers to offer and sell “subscribers-only” plans and content. Content creators will be able to create exclusive content. This can be done by setting a password to a particular post and sending the password to subscribers via email. As one would expect, the feature comes with a list of subscribers. A detailed revenue breakdown is available for viewing as well. And lastly, payments will be done entirely through Stripe, and if WordPress bloggers don’t have one, this feature will help them set up an account.
On a side note, Stripe offers its services to 31 countries only: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Estonia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Hong Kong, Spain, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Switzerland to name a few.
For subscribers, they will receive bills automatically after the Renewal Period – the interval between each payment; the amount paid will be transferred to the content creator’s Stripe account. Subscribers will also get receipts automatically. If they want to cancel subscriptions, they can do so anytime. And lastly, payment through credit cards is available.
With this new WordPress feature, billing is automatic. Bloggers are provided a new way to earn revenue through their blogs or self-hosted websites. Content creators will be able to customize payment plans to offer various types of subscriptions for readers and customers. This means that different currencies, payment frequencies, and the amount can be changed, giving bloggers a lot of price points to offer subscribers.
Naturally, this new feature comes with a price. Depending on the content creator’s WordPress plan, the platform will take a percentage cut from the total revenue generated by the website: 8% for personal plans, 4% for premium plans, 2% for businesses, and no fee for e-commerce plans. Besides that, Stripes collects 2.9% plus $0.30 for every payment made to the account.
Welcoming the Money with Recurring Payments: The Steps
To get started, bloggers must first do these preliminary steps to enable the recurring payment feature on their website. First, Jetpack version 7.4 must be installed to use the new WordPress feature.
- Log in to your WordPress.com account.
- Set up a Stripe account.
- Connect your Stripe account by going back to WordPress.com, clicking on the “Connect Stripe to Get Started” on the “Earn” page.
- Complete the setup essentials.
- Add the recurring payments button by clicking on the plus icon on the editor.
- After pressing the plus icon, add a new block with the recurring payments button.
- Alternatively, you can type `/recurring payments` to initiate the block search then add the button.
The feature can be customized by the block editor (Gutenberg). Bloggers will notice four fields when they edit the block: currency, price, description, and renewal interval.
Content creators can offer as many subscriptions as they want, and they can add more by creating a new block. Subscriptions that have already been made are saved; this element makes it easy for creators to insert existing plans on a new post or page.
What’s in it for WordPress and Jetpack Users?
Now, if you’re using WordPress, then this is definitely a great feature to gain a new source of income and even increase your fan base. With the help of your Stripe account, processing of the ongoing payment and dues are automated. You can accept payments directly from visitors too. By offering “subscribers-only” content, and subscriptions, you’re more likely to empower and attract new fans. And as your subscribers increase, you will be able to raise funds from supporters to help you pursue new creative projects.
You’re not the only one who will benefit from this feature. It also provides convenience to your visitors and subscribers by getting better access to your subscriptions and offerings. Likewise, a simple and manageable payment method is accessible to your fans.
If you’re running a club or an organization, you can also take advantage of this feature, especially if you’re looking for an easy way to collect recurring membership fees and dues regularly.
Still in its Infancy: The Future of Recurring Payment Feature
The recurring payment feature is absolutely good, but it isn’t near perfect. Compared to fully-featured membership plugins like MemberPress and LearnDash, the new feature by WordPress and Stripe is actually limited. It takes more work to limit access to exclusive content. As mentioned above, bloggers have to set up passwords for special content and email it to subscribers. This makes the feature simpler and restricted in comparison with plugins that offer content access control, built-in community features and more.
Still, even though the recurring payment feature lacks a fully-fledged membership system, an average blogger can definitely earn from it. It’s undeniable that the recurring payment is a quick and easy feature to collect payments. If you’re on other platforms such as Patreon, you can move your subscription plans to WordPress to save on fees and revenue share by simply adding your WordPress account as another channel.
Furthermore, since it is in its infancy, we can hope that WordPress and the Jetpack team will improve on the feature that will implement a better membership system in the future.
As of now, WordPress boasts of approximately 70 million new posts produced by publishers monthly. And more than 409 million views across 20 billion pages are recorded by the platform every month. It’s not surprising to think that this feature will change the way subscriptions are done online.