How to create an event guide in 2022

How to create a professional event guide

To create an event guide, it is essential to map all the relevant information about an event so that your website can be a bridge of access between the producers and the users/visitors of the events.

An Events Guide is extremely relevant to the current post-pandemic context.

The global health crisis significantly affected the event segment, and many believed that it would not be able to sustain itself. However, as in many other segments, event organizers had to rethink how they offer their services and transform the business into something more suited to the modern world.

Currently, forecasts for this segment are very satisfactory and promising, as pointed out by a report by Statista, which indicates that the event ticket sales niche is projected to reach US$72.31 billion in 2022. The report further showed that the event ticket sales segment is expected to deliver revenue growth of 14.4% in 2023.

Thus, investing in this segment can be a very profitable and sustainable way to develop an online business.

Read on and learn how to create and monetize a professional and efficient event guide!

What is an event guide?

As the name suggests, an event guide is a platform developed to create interactions between organizers and visitors/users by promoting events in different niches and segments.

An event guide works as an exhibition showcase, where organizers and advertisers can offer their events more comprehensively, reaching a large number of interested consumers.

An event website simplifies the process of purchasing tickets, registering, and accessing events.

This business is an excellent way to monetize online, as it offers many opportunities and formats to grow steadily in your niche.

What are the possible niches for an event guide?

Creating an event guide gives you the opportunity to monetize different niche activities with many different services.

You can create an event guide focusing on just one niche or one that covers several segments. Either option offers benefits to the website’s creator as well as event organizers.

If you have a niche event website, you will be able to target a specific segment and become a leader in this market.

As you are targeting multiple niches, you will be able to reach a larger audience and promote a wider range of events.

  • Some niches to explore are:
  • Music, festivals, and entertainment;
  • Religious events;
  • Regional and agricultural fairs;
  • Sporting and fitness events;
  • Gastronomic events;
  • Technology events;
  • Professional and work-related events, etc.

How to create an event guide professionally

Creating a professional event guide is easy if you have the right tools. eDirectory is specialized software for creating classifieds websites, business directories, and of course, event guides.

To create your event guide using eDirectory, you need to follow a few simple steps. See below!

1. Choose the niche that fits your strategy

A niche is the starting point for all classified websites, including event guides, as it is through choosing a niche that you can begin to develop your marketing and monetization strategies.

Create an Event Guide - Category events

If you already have an online presence for your business, such as a website, social networks, or a blog with an established theme, take advantage of the identity in your event guide. If you haven’t defined your niche yet, consider choosing a subject that you have an affinity for or are interested in exploring. Believe me, this identification will make your work to populate your site with new events much more pleasant and fluid.

Bet on specific niches because, despite having a smaller audience, the tendency is for this audience to be more engaged with events of their interest. If you go for a bigger niche, try to target your reach to your region or city, and gradually expand the reach of your event guide as demand from advertisers grows.

2. Sign up for eDirectory to start your project

Creating an event guide from scratch is no simple task, and if you want to opt for WordPress events themes, for example, you will end up realizing that the offer of plugins is, at the same time, wide in quantity and limited in quality.

As it is a free platform, we are given the perception that is possible to build a robust and functional website, which will expand over the years at zero cost. This perception is far from being accurate, as you still must include domain purchasing and hosting expenses in your planning, in addition to themes and plugins that are usually paid on a recurring basis (monthly or yearly).

With a platform designed to create classifieds websites and events guides such as eDirectory, you have a ready-to-use solution at an affordable price with plans that include hosting and unlimited listings. In addition, eDirectory is a scalable and robust solution that will grow with your business.

Create an Event Guide - tier subscription plans

Have access to an intuitive drag-and-drop interface, complete control panel to add and edit new events, moderate reviews, add add-ons, descriptions, your advertisers can add external links such as websites and social networks, security certificate included, and many more features.

After the initial setup with eDirectory, you can now choose which payment methods your advertisers can choose when paying for plans and ads.

3. Define payment methods

Creating a simple, low-friction checkout experience is essential for an effective monetization strategy. Making it easy for your customers to pay for monthly subscriptions and other additional services is important for your event guide to generate recurring revenue.

eDirectory comes with support for the largest digital payment methods on the market, such as Stripe, PayPal, and Authorize.Net. On top of that, you can enable recurring payments with the click of a button. To set up one or more payment methods, access the control panel and select the Payment Methods option:

Create an Event Guide - Payment Gateways

4. Manage features and pricing for each level

Next, you must define what will be the values and resources available at each subscription level of your event guide. With the eDirectory control panel, you give your advertisers power over every function of the event guide, from the most basic functions like email, phone, and description settings, to advanced options like including youtube videos, Facebook pages, and including a URL to another site.

Create an Event Guide - Level and pricing plans

If you still don’t know where to start, we suggest having a free basic plan so that your advertisers can familiarize themselves with your events guide and, from there, learn about the advantages of the other plans and move on to an event subscription.

Just remember to save the most important features for your most important plan so advertisers will want to sign up.

Need to change some option or value for one of the plans, just go back to the payment options and adjust your membership level offers whenever you need to as your business grows.

Whatever is your business plan to create your event guide, eDirectory delivers the tools so you don’t miss any opportunities.

eDirectory Facebook Group

5. Create categories and subcategories for your event guide

One of the most powerful features of an online event guide or an online business directory is its categories and subcategories. Essential for the organization and sectorization of a website and for indexing and ranking in search engines (SEO).

Inside eDirectory, you, as the event guide manager, define how many categories your site will have, being able to expand according to the needs of your niche. Aggregate subcategories to segment your event guide and allow your advertisers to find the option that best fits their events.

Create an Event Guide - categories and subcategories

6. Create a new event

And finally, the most important part: how to create an event. Through the control panel, advertisers can easily create and edit events within minutes.

Set event name, date, location, add photos and videos, opening hours, links to external websites (purchase tickets), map, social media feed (Facebook and Twitter), and more.

Create an Event Guide - Event creation overview

Advertisers have control over SEO settings such as description, title, and keywords. With eDirectory it is also possible to obtain reports on leads and the performance of each event created, making it easier for advertisers to analyze information.

Next, we’ll show you how to monetize your event guide.

How to monetize your event guide?

You can monetize your event guide with eDirectory in a variety of ways, ensuring a recurring source of earnings. Check out how to do this:

  • Creating plans for your events: You can create up to three subscription plans (basic, intermediate, and premium, for example) and offer users various options and price ranges.
  • Banners and classifieds: another form of monetization is to sell advertising spaces with banners so that advertisers can advertise.
  • Offer additional services: by creating an event guide, you can also offer additional services such as design, video, and digital marketing. The classifieds section can be used to advertise event-related products such as musical instruments, accessories, etc.

Benefits of eDirectory for creating an event guide

You may have already realized that creating an event guide can be very beneficial for entrepreneurs looking to build a profitable online business.

By using eDirectory you create your website with several useful tools for advertisers and users, such as:

a. Recurring events – create and display

The advertiser will have access to the recurring event’s configuration, where they can create a list of events that occur frequently, for example, annual, monthly, biweekly, or weekly.

b. Monetization from free to premium events

As mentioned before, you will be able to create plans for your events, thus establishing various monetization possibilities.

It is possible to create from free events to premium events. In addition, you can also monetize classifieds and more with eDirectory.

c. Widgets for displaying events (featured/recurring)

Use widgets to highlight your events and reach more users and visitors. This is a great way to create relevant content and keep your users engaged on your page.

d. Multiple categories

eDirectory also allows you to position your event in multiple categories, which greatly increases the likelihood of your event being found in searches by your site’s users. Advertisers see this option as a big differentiator, which certainly makes their event guide more competitive.

Wrapping up

See how an event guide can be beneficial if you want to build a profitable online business? Now you know the best tool to make you achieve the success you want.

Ready to create an event guide professionally and efficiently? So, don’t hesitate to test out eDirectory in a free guided demo right now to get the best and richest experience in creating event guides and classified portals.

Edirectory Free guided demo

Meet the new eDirectory Marketplace Widget

Meet the new eDirectory Marketplace WidgetWe are thrilled to announce a killer feature that changes the game for the online business directory community: the eDirectory Marketplace Widget. Publishers now have a perfect tool to showcase and sell their products or services directly from your directory with the click of a button, making your online directory a much more attractive option for new and existing sponsors.

This feature has been developed over several months by the eDirectory product team to be useful and easy to manage. You can maximize your online directory by offering more value to sponsors looking to sell online to a wider audience.

The Marketplace Widget is a brand new addition to eDirectory’s most recent release, and we’ll explore how to utilize it in detail in this article. Let’s get started.

Make it possible for your advertisers to sell products and services

Marketplaces have become some of the biggest and most valuable companies in the world. It is expected that B2B eCommerce site sales will reach nearly $1.77 trillion in 2022*¹, an increase of 12% over the past year as online business trends continue to influence everyday B2B operations.

Globally, 40% of all online spending post-pandemic*³ occurs on marketplaces, a number that is predicted to increase in 2022 as the world reopens. With the new eDirectory Marketplace Widget, your advertisers can offer their goods and services directly to their audience through your website.

Easily add a direct payment link (from any payment gateway) to the “Buy Now” button and that’s it! The sponsor can make sales and receive the payment instantly. They can also use the custom buttons to book services (book now, make an appointment, etc), which is something we will explore in more detail in the next topic.

We have a detailed article on how to use the eDirectory marketplace widget to its full potential.

edirectory marketplace widget

Offer services and book appointments from your online directory

If your advertisers aren’t selling physical or digital products, but are instead providing services like classes, consultations, or any activity that requires an appointment, they can use the products and services widget in conjunction with their favorite booking tool (such as Calendly or YouCanBookMe) to drive leads directly to their landing pages.

eDirectory Marketplace Widget

In niches such as Wellness & Health, where sponsors can offer services such as yoga classes, individual boxing lessons, nutritionist consultations per hour, and personal training sessions, this can be a very valuable feature for listing owners. 

For other consultancy or coaching-related niches, the “Book Now” button is also a differential that adds value to your online directory and could attract new clients, as these professionals work mostly on an appointment basis. Consider upgrading your eDirectory to v13.1 to take advantage of these and more features.

For Restaurant and Food Services

The eDirectory Marketplace Widget is also a killer feature for the restaurant and food niches because now your sponsors can create special offers that can be purchased or booked on the spot! 

edirectory marketplace widget - fajitas

For instance, the demand for personal chefs has grown significantly since June 2020, according to Fanny Suen Hiu-yan, founder of MobiChef, a Hong Kong startup that provides private chefs for hire*². Listing owners can then create unique offers combining products and services to uncover new revenue streams, such as adding a “Chef at home” service with a “Book Now” button linking your favorite booking app, letting the customer choose their own time and date.

eDirectory marketplace widget - Chef at home

In addition, a reservation service can be added so clients can book tables directly from a listing, thereby avoiding needless phone calls. Restaurants can also sell pre-cooked meals, wine bottles, condiments, and more.

Mix and match call to actions

It is possible to redirect clients not only to shopping links (like PayPal or Stripe) and booking links (Calendly) but also to custom pages, messaging applications, CRM applications, and so forth.

Take this Golf club example, players can schedule 1 on 1 lessons via text message directly to the club’s reception by clicking the Golf Lessons button. The offer appears on the listing and can be visited by the audience.

eDiectory Marketplace widget - Golf lesson

And If your advertisers want to get serious about tracking their conversions through the Products and Services widget, they can use Google Tag Manager or Google Analytics to track any URL or form submission on your online directory in order to take full control of your KPIs.

What kind of buying links can be used with the eDirectory Marketplace Widget?

This widget allows the use of any type of external link! Whether from PayPal, Stripe, Amazon Pay, or WePay among others. It’s also possible to link offers directly to a store on Shopify, Magento, Open Cart, and drive the lead to a sales funnel, hence using the listing owner inventory and shipping options.

Leads can also be sent to a landing page with a custom form, and thus have more control to drive the prospects to a CRM app such as Hubspot, Mailchimp, Pipedrive, GetResponse, and so on.

Start Your Online Directory

Wrapping up

The Products and Services Widget is a great tool that empowers listing owners that don’t have an online store to sell products and services directly to customers. If properly used, this can change the way your advertisers use your online directory.

As a great value offer, you can include this widget only in the top-level listings of your online directory to attract more sponsors.

In  this article we covered:

  • An introduction to the new eDirectory Marketplace Widget (products and services)
  • Selling physical and digital products
  • Offering services and booking appointments
  • Restaurant and Food usage
  • Mix different types of links
  • What types of links can be used

Read the full list of enhancements of eDirectory v13.1 here.

Upgrade to the latest version of eDirectory today!

For active clients looking to take advantage of the latest and greatest eDirectory.com has to offer, simply fill out the Upgrade Request form or contact your account executive.

For new clients looking to launch an online business with all you see here and much more, please request a demo here, call us directly at +1-800-630-4694, or send an email to sales@eDirectory.com.

Join the eDirectory Facebook GroupReferences:

  1. https://internetretailing.net/marketplaces/marketplaces/marketplaces-clear-winner-as-51-of-post-pandemic-retail-set-to-take-place-online-23408
  2. https://www.scmp.com/magazines/style/leisure/article/3152874/how-personal-chefs-became-covid-19s-must-have-luxury
  3. https://www.insiderintelligence.com/insights/ecommerce-industry-statistics/

It’s out: New eDirectory v13.1

Meet the New eDirectory v13.1

New eDirectory v13.1We are proud to announce a major release: eDirectory v13.1. It is filled with new features and new technology. It reflects the constant evolution of the most complete directory software.

According to Arca Solutions’ CEO, James Chubb, this new eDirectory version comes from a new set of internal processes for faster release cycles. It means more product features are being added with even more quality.

This release gives more flexibility and functionality, making it easier to launch and monetize directory-based websites.

The new eDirectory Mobile App

The star of the new release is the new generation of the eDirectory Apps. Formerly built using two different platforms (one for Android and one for iOS), the new eDirectory app is created with Flutter, an open-source framework developed by Google in 2015. It delivers native performance and visual consistency on different platforms.

Fernando Nascimento, product manager of eDirectory, says that web and app formats are now closer and the plan is to get them even closer in terms of design, features, and functionalities.

Read more about the New eDirectory App here.

There’s no doubt the new eDirectory App brings more flexibility but it also brings more opportunities for customization, to meet specific needs. ”The new version is built on the open-source Flutter platform, where the single code base can generate native iPhone and Android apps. Going forward this will dramatically increase the velocity of the app development, as well as make app customization much more affordable”, says James.

What’s new on eDirectory v13.1

Besides the new eDirectory App, the web version brings improvements and new features across all modules. As we have a blog post dedicated to the new eDirectory App, let’s see here the highlights for the web version!

New Widgets for the Listing Detail Page

Marketplace Widget

This feature allows listing publishers to create lists of products and services that
will be shown as a catalog on the listing detail page, and an external purchase link can be added so the end-user can purchase the offered item. Learn how to add this feature to your eDirectory site.

Header Widgets

A total of 5 new header widgets for design enhancements and to create fine-tuned templates for each category.

  • Thin Header
  • Centralized Header (3 different versions)
  • Header with Gallery (up to 8 images)

Contact Us Widget

The contact information is displayed on the default header widget but now it can be displayed anywhere on the listing detail page. It includes address, phone, an additional phone, website, and email.

Badges Widget

Similar to the Contact Information, Badges were displayed only on the default header but now can be added anywhere on the listing detail page.

Browse by Category Widget

Site managers can now select from which module the categories will be selected on any
of the “Browse by category” widgets. It creates more options to highlight the best content of your project, improving user engagement.

Twitter Feed Widget

With the sunset of the Advanced Social Media Plugin, the Twitter feed is now available for all new installations. Available for Listings and Events modules. LinkedIn clickable URL can now be added to the listing page.

Deals Module

Advertisers are now able to upload their own QR code, which will be displayed on the redeemed coupon, making it easier the deal validation. Fixed prices are now optional, allowing advertisers to create generic coupons such as “All products with 50% off”. Advertisers will be able to define if redeem codes will be generated randomly for each deal redeem or define a unique, customized coupon code that will be presented for all visitors who redeem that deal. Lastly, the Site Manager will be able to disable the display of the time left to redeem and the deals left counter. See how to use QR Code on deals.

General Settings – Maps and Banner Ads by level

Site managers can now choose which levels will display Google maps and Banner Ads on the detail page. Available for listings, events, and classifieds It allows to create or highlight the benefits of the premium plans.

Theme Layout Updates

New layout for themes Doctors, Wedding, and Restaurant. Improved default color palette for contrast and usability.

Claimable Listings export

New option to export claimable listings on the Mailing list section. Claimable listing is a powerful built-in feature so you can reach out to your potential advertisers, starting a conversation to engage and sell. This new export feature creates a faster way to pull this data and feed your preferred email marketing platform.

Read the full list of enhancements of eDirectory v13.1 here.

Upgrade to the latest version of eDirectory today!

For active clients looking to take advantage of the latest and greatest eDirectory.com has to offer, simply fill out the Upgrade Request form or contact your account executive.

For new clients looking to launch their online Enterprise with all you see here and much more, please request a demo here, call us directly at +1-800-630-4694, or send an email to sales@eDirectory.com.

How to Build a Membership Website Easily

how to build a membership websiteYou’ve heard the buzz. More and more people are researching how to build a membership website.

Why? Membership websites can provide a great new source of recurring revenue, so it’s no wonder they’re exploding in popularity.

So then, which one of these are you?

1) It’s all in my head: You have a really great idea for a membership website you want.

or…

2) I’ve got the content: You’re a pro at something and already have a ton of content you’d like to monetize.

Whether you’ve only been thinking about doing it or you’ve already been building an online knowledge base, you’re onto something big…

Because regardless of the path you walk now, starting a successful membership website has never been easier. 

Yes — running a successful membership site takes work, but luckily, there are some great tools out there to help you along the way (and give you access to amazing features you can use to grow your business online).

So in this article, we’ll show you exactly what a membership website is, what it does, and how you can build one (no advanced technical skills required).

Ready to explore this ultimate guide to membership websites? Let’s jump in.

What Is a Membership Website?

A membership website is a platform that offers exclusive content to members only. Usually, that content exists on the other end of a paywall.

Simply put, in exchange for signing up for the site, members can access gated content that’s not available elsewhere. Only members can access and use the information you put “behind” your membership sign-up.

Pricing for a membership site can be free, paid, or tiered. Most notably, a membership website takes advantage of the booming subscription-based model of recurring revenue.

Meaning, site owners can expect to see repeated income. Which is extra enticing since 76% of businesses now look at subscription-based pricing as a way to improve their customer relationships and retention.

how to build a membership website

Sure, numbers like this are super exciting if you’re just starting to learn how to build a membership site. However, it’s important to point out that building this kind of website is no small task. Business owners who make money online through a successful membership site put a ton of work into it.

So, let’s see how people end up making money with a successful membership site next.

How Membership Sites Make Money

It’s likely you’ve heard about people making good money from running a membership website. And you may be thinking that income is just from repeating monthly or annual fees. In reality, many successful membership sites make money using a mix of different methods.

So now you’re probably wondering…ok then, exactly how do membership sites make money?

Well, here are the main ways membership sites can earn money:

  • Membership Dues: Get recurring revenue month after month (or year after year) when people pay you to be a member of your site. This can be set up in tiers so the highest-priced plan should also include the most perks for your members.
  • Affiliate Sales: Collect revenue from sales you send to your affiliates. Insert affiliate links to partner products within your website content.
  • Google Ads: Make money from your web traffic by displaying 3rd-party advertisements in banner areas with Pay-per-Click advertising.
  • Selling Digital Products: Courses, guides, and other downloadable content that’s valuable to others can be sold on your website. You can set up an eCommerce shop or bundle these products with specific membership plans.
  • Selling Directory Listings: If you’re using a robust membership tool, you’ll have access to other revenue-generating features like online directories and classifieds. Selling these listings to advertisers and sponsors can be a fantastic way to generate income.

As you can see, there’s more than one way to make money using a membership site. And using a solid membership tool that offers features that support these revenue streams makes it much easier to tap into these different ways to generate income from your website.

WordPress Plugin vs Dedicated Membership Tool

When you’re learning how to build a membership site, you’ll see there are WordPress membership plugins that developers install and use to give normal website membership capabilities.

Some people look up how to build a membership website with WordPress and dive right in, trying to do everything at once and all by themselves. This could cost months of time setting up a DIY website and configuring a WordPress plugin. And after it’s up and running, many people realize they simply don’t have the time or energy it takes to continue to build every feature their membership site needs.

Because for the average business owner, installing, setting up, and maintaining a made-from-scratch website plus a membership plugin can be very time-consuming and not beginner-friendly.

For those that plan their membership site, use a dedicated membership site tool like eDirectory, and stay committed, the possibilities for growth can be astounding. This dedicated membership site tool offers everything you need to launch and grow a successful membership and online directory website like a blogging system, banner advertisements, online recurring payments, and more.

how to build a membership website

If you’re serious about setting up a successful membership site and looking for a one-stop solution, a dedicated membership tool is the way to go.

So now that you know why people prefer dedicated membership tools over DIY solutions like WordPress membership plugins, let’s cover exactly how to build a membership website.

How to Build a Membership Website

When you’re ready to make your own membership website, follow these easy steps to get it up and running in no time.

1. Determine Your Industry

When you’re first learning how to create a membership program, it can feel overwhelming. Luckily, this step is not only fun, but it will also help clear a path for where your website is headed.

The very first thing you’ll want to do to build a membership website is to pick your niche.

You may already have an online presence that you want to monetize, like a blog or podcast. In that case, you’ve already carved out your niche.

If not, some great membership website ideas can include (but are not limited to):

  • Niche online business directories.
  • Specialized gated content like stock photos, how-to’s, recipes, etc.
  • Local classified listings.
  • Event calendars for specific interests and groups.

…and a lot more.

So, what do you know a lot about? What are you passionate about? The answers to these questions can help inspire ideas for your membership website.

Start Your Online Directory2. Choose the Right Membership Tool

Next up, you’ll want to sign up for eDirectory. Using a dedicated membership tool is the best way to easily build and manage your website (plus access features that let you generate additional income.)

how to build a membership website

And unlike a WordPress membership site, eDirectory is a cloud solution that provides everything you need to build a raving online community (and without all the hassle).

After you’ve got your membership tool up and running, you’ll want to set up your payment gateways.

3. Set Up Payment Methods

Accepting secure credit card and PayPal payments over your website is a must for a successful membership site. Plus, you need a way to get paid.

So, the next step to setting up your membership website is to configure your payment methods. You’ll have many payment service provider options to choose from.

how to build a membership website

If you don’t already have one, you’ll need to set up an account with your preferred payment solution. Then, you can connect your account through your membership website.

To do so, simply head to Settings > Manage Levels & Pricing > Payment Gateways.

Once you’ve connected your payment provider(s) details, you’ll be ready to set up and customize each membership level that you offer.

4. Build Your Membership Levels

The next thing you need to do is determine the cost and features of each one of your membership levels.

Not sure what to charge? We recommended starting with a free membership level with some features included. Free members get to use your software and are a great place to find paying customers since they’re already familiar with your brand and software.

After your free level is set up, you’ll need to decide what you’ll include with each one of your paid membership levels.

Because eDirectory is a leader in online business directories, you’ll find a lot of options to really fine-tune what your members can and can’t do.

You can offer different features within:

  • Listings
  • Events
  • Classifieds
  • Banners
  • Articles

how to build a membership website

Just remember to save the most impactful features for your highest plan so people will want to sign up.

And don’t stress about which features and pricing to go with. It’s easy to return to this area and adjust your membership level offerings whenever you need to as your business grows and your members’ needs change.

5. Populate Your Listings

Now that your membership plans are built, it’s time to populate your directory listings. This is an important step because you’ll want to show leads what they can expect when they sign up as a member with you. That’s nearly impossible to do if you can’t visually explain it.

So, you’ll need to create some listings, by hand or by importing them.

how to build a membership website

During this step, you’ll want to customize your listing layout to match your membership website. There are many configuration options, so pick the one you like the most and keep populating your listings.

6. Create Members-Only Content 

The next step to build a membership website is to create members-only content. The psychological phenomenon known as FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) can really drive sales, so locking gated content behind a paywall can be a great business decision.

This can look different for everyone since no one membership website is the same.

You may be an expert at succulent care and have tons of helpful guides already published. Compiling this content into an organized course or workbook is a great way to source members-only content for your website.

If you don’t already have a blog, or if it aligns better with your business model, these are some popular ways to create some members-only content:

  • Business Directory: From local business directories to niche hobbyist groups, people are willing to pay to access listings specific to what they’re interested in. 
  • Classified Ads: If you’re using classifieds on your site, only letting paid members post ads is a great way to earn new recurring subscriptions. Just make sure to populate your ads just like you’ve populated your listings in the previous step.
  • Event Calendar: Only allow members to post to a public event calendar. Alternatively, set it up so only members can view the events.
  • Offer Services: Access to coaching calls, pre-recorded webinars, or courses.
  • Offer Goods: Creatives can give members access to things like custom social media graphic templates or stylized stock images.

…and anything else you can think of that may have value to someone. But to start, these are excellent sources of members-only content you can create quickly and easily.

7. Promote Your Membership Site

Next, you need to promote and market your membership website.

This is an extremely important step because, after all that hard work, you want to make sure people are coming to your website.

Head to the Blog Module in eDirectory and start writing posts around keywords related to your membership website and your intended audience. Find out your ideal customer, what they need, and how they search for it.

how to build a membership website

The easy-to-use and SEO-optimized Blog Module lets you create, monitor, and optimize your content in just a few clicks.

And if you’re planning on making money through affiliate sales, you’ll also find an option to seamlessly insert your links within your content.

On top of SEO blogging, you might also want to consider these popular website promotion methods:

  • Pay-per-Click Advertising (PPC): Pay for Google Ads advertising on specific, related keywords.
  • Take Advantage of Social: Create (and stick to) a social media posting schedule.
  • Email Marketing: Build an email list by collecting addresses on your site then promoting to those leads (great for returning traffic and high conversions).
  • Word of Mouth: In this digital world, website owners often forget how impactful telling other people about your membership site can be. This is especially important for online communities that are locally based, like a business directory.

There are a lot of ways to promote your membership site, but these are all very popular places to start. For more, make sure to head over to our article on how to market an online directory where we’ve laid out some detailed tips for powerful website promotion.

8. Keep Improving Your Membership Site

For any business to succeed, you’ll need to make sure to continually improve. If you notice something isn’t working right on your site, jump in and fix it. If you get feedback from an advertiser about a feature request, see if you can provide it. Make the customer experience pleasant and you’ll likely see members who stay subscribed for the long haul.

how to build a membership website

The great thing about easy-to-use membership website platforms is that whenever you see an area for improvement, you can jump right into your site and change it. And if you’re not sure how, reach out to us for help.

With eDirectory, you get access to a helpful support team ready to help you make your membership website a success.

Create a Membership Site with eDirectory 

Now that you know how to build a membership website, your next step is to launch yours using eDirectory. This feature-rich tool lets you build and manage a customized membership directory to meet your business goals and drive growth.

With eDirectory, your membership site can:

    • Collect Member Dues: Generate recurring revenue from membership fees.
    • Let Members Login: Display an easy-to-use login area for your members to access and manage their own account information.
    • Sell Directory Listings: Allow people and/or businesses to create listings, and automatically turn them into member profiles.
    • Featured Listings: Sell featured directory spots with a repeating revenue model.
    • Integrate with Social Media: Display your Twitter feed on your website, plus encourage members to share your brand across popular social platforms.
    • Use Classified Ads: Offer your members different capabilities inside of classified listings based on membership levels, driving sales to your higher plans.
    • Social Media Integration: Connect with social media platforms for more exposure with social sharing links and a website Twitter feed.
    • Grow with Content: Access the Blog Module to create and manage SEO-optimized content that brings you the right kind of traffic.
    • Earn Money from Ads: Easily Insert Google Ads into banner space on your site or even sell the space to members with a powerful Banner Ad System.
    • List Events: Encourage a sense of community among members by letting them create recurring or one-time event listings, complete with a Google Maps integration.
      …and more.

So if you’re wanting to build a successful membership website that’s easy to manage and gives you access to the power of online directories, eDirectory is a fantastic choice.

Asking yourself how can I create a membership website for free? Don’t wait, sign up for a free eDirectory demo today.

Join the eDirectory Facebook Group

 

Instant Messaging for Directory Websites

eDirectory Instant Messaging Plugin

We released the Instant Messaging Plugin that allows site owners and advertisers to use Telegram, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger directly on the website.

Instant messaging provides real-time communication between visitors and listing owners, allowing them to make immediate sales contacts.

Site owners will be able to add a messenger floating button to the site, choosing one from the three options allowed. The other messaging platforms can be displayed on the header, footer and Contact Us page as clickable elements.

Instant Messaging Plugin for Directories

For advertisers, the messaging apps clickable items will be displayed below the phone number on the listing detail page.

Instant Messaging for Listings

Contact us today, add this Plugin to your directory, and get connected with your audience!

Benefits of using IM in your directory site

  • These apps provide instant communication. In addition to text messages, users can exchange multimedia messages, such as photos, videos, documents, or sound.
  • Instant Messaging is applicable to both B2B and B2C businesses. It is important to choose the right platform and explore what it has to offer.
  • Compared to digital marketing and social media, mobile messaging has much more engagement and return on investment in marketing.

Instant Messaging apps around the world

Different applications are popular in different countries, and so your choice of apps must take this into consideration:

  • WhatsApp is a world leader and is used in 104 countries. It is popular in Brazil, Mexico, India, Russia and in many countries of Europe, Africa, America, and Asia.
  • For US markets, the most used applications are Messenger and WhatsApp.
  • Facebook Messenger is used in 64 countries, notably Australia, Canada, and the United States.
  • Telegram and other messaging applications that are very popular in China, Japan, and Iran.
  • In Europe, however, the leaders are WhatsApp and Messenger. Asia and specifically in China, most users use WhatsApp and Telegram. In Africa, most people communicate via Messenger, WhatsApp, and Telegram.

Be sure to keep track of client preferences and their needs, which can change over time. Instant Messaging is a great development, satisfying the demands for speed, practicality, and real connectedness.

How to comply with the European General Data Protection Act (GDPR)

The General Data Protection Act (GDPR) is considered to be the most significant piece of European data protection legislation to be introduced in the European Union (EU) in 20 years and will replace the 1995 Data Protection Directive. The GDPR enhances EU individuals’ privacy rights and places significantly enhanced obligations on organizations handling data.

The new regulation goes into effect on May 25, 2018.

The GDPR regulates the processing of a data subject’s personal data in the European Union including its collection, storage and transfer or use. The GDPR gives data subjects more rights and control over their data by regulating how you should handle and store any personal data they collect.

Every website that collects, stores and handle European citizen’s data will have to comply. But what does that mean?

Basically, you’ll have to update your privacy policy and place a cookie consent disclaimer in your website.

How to (re)write my Privacy Policy?

As every online directory is unique, there’s not a standard template to copy. Besides the information you already have there, the privacy notice should address the following to sufficiently inform the data subject:

  • Who is collecting the data?
  • What data is being collected?
  • What is the legal basis for processing the data?
  • Will the data be shared with any third parties?
  • How will the information be used?
  • How long will the data be stored for?
  • What rights does the data subject have?
  • How can the data subject raise a complaint?

The best tools we find to help our users are Terms Feed and Iubenda. The final text will depend on how many tools you have installed in your site like Google Analytics, CRMs, Facebook Pixels, Hotjar, LiveChat, etc.

 Data Controller and Data Processor

One thing that you have to highlight in your new Privacy Policy is who handles data.

A Data Controller represents the entity that determines the purposes, conditions and means of the processing of personal data: the Directory owner (you)

If you host your online directory with us so we are the Data Processor. If you host anywhere else, your or the hosting provider is your Data Processor.

Be sure to use the right Data Processor when updating your Privacy Policy.

 How to place a cookie consent disclaimer in my online directory?

One way is to use paid tools like OneTrust.com, Cookiebot.com and others. But there are open source options like Cookie Consent by Insites and Silktide. Just place their scripts using Google Tag Manager.

To learn how to install the Cookie Consent Disclaimer by Insites, read this article here.

Alternatively, you can embed one of the numerous 3rd party widgets, or if you have the owned license you can develop custom code.

Contact eDirectory support at support.edirectory.com if you have questions or problems.

Read more:

*We take great care in providing information to you, but please be aware of the fact that this blog post can not be considered a substitute for professional legal advice.

Launch your site with the best Business Directory Script

Launch your site with the best Business Directory Script

What is the best business directory script to start a project?

When working on a new idea, it can be daunting to navigate the internet and find the best solution for your needs. Particularly when you enter WordPress territory, where there are so many plugins, and both free and paid themes to choose from, you are almost certain to waste time trying out options that are not professional.

Outside of that scenario, you will find other options that are not an all-in-one solution in terms of suiting any niche you may need. If you would like to build a new online business such as a restaurant guide or a fitness & wellness online directory, you could do both with a professional look with eDirectory.

Let’s show you what are the main strengths of eDirectory.

And what makes eDirectory the best business directory script?

In a few words, the complete package! 

eDirectory is the most complete directory script out there, fully-featured from top to bottom, beautifully designed, and ready to generate a recurring revenue stream.

Built using technology platforms that power many of the largest sites on the internet. In addition to the core technology, we have optimized our code and configurations for speed and reliability.

The eDirectory setup is fast and easy. You can import listing data from a spreadsheet, and click to edit navigation and other site layout items via the widget-based page editor. Launch your site in minutes and manage your content with ease.

edirectory widget page editor

All versions come with the following modules: Listings, Deals, Classifieds, Articles, Events, Blog, and Banners. It also comes with a User Profile, Advertiser Dashboard, and 10+ Payment Gateways to make it easier to monetize your online directory.

And to complete that full package, you still get the only online directory app builder in the market with native support for iOS and Android. Know more about the integrated app builder.

Built with SEO in mind, you can focus on content, and rest assured your site will rank well in the SERPs.

eDirectory Tech Stack

  • PHP
  • JQuery JavaScript
  • {Less} CSS
  • Bootstrap
  • Symphony
  • ElasticSearch
  • MySQL Database

The out-of-the-box features our clients love

  • Claimable Listings
  • Coupon Codes creator
  • Social Login
  • Email notifications
  • Bookmarking System
  • SEO Center
  • Photo Galeries
  • Video embedding
  • Page editor
  • See all Features!

Edirectory Free guided demo

Perfect for beginners. Fantastic for experienced developers!

eDirectory has an intuitive interface to help our customers to create and manage their directory websites with ease, taking advantage of our Cloud subscriptions: don’t worry about installation and hosting, we’ve got you covered.

Skilled developers can self-host our directory script accessing the source code to perform any modification in design and features.

What you can build with eDirectory in just a few clicks:

  • Lead-gen directory websites
  • Buyer’s Guides
  • Local, National, and International Business Directories
  • Membership sites
  • Yellow Pages sites
  • Classifieds Portals
  • Restaurant Guides
  • Review Sites
  • and many more, unleash your creativity!

edirectory restaurant theme

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eDirectory Facebook Group

eDirectory July Upgrade

We recently released the eDirectory July Upgrade to the product to add new features, make some optimizations, and change the way a few things work, all for the better!

We added more widgets to the library to make sure clients have the site that works best for their specific online community with new options for personalization.

Here’s a rundown of the latest and greatest eDirectory has to offer in its newest release:

1. Header: 4 new header widgets, totaling 5 different header widgets available for all themes

  • Header with sticky menu
  • Header with contact phone
  • Header with social media links
  • Header with centralized logo
  • Available for all themes

2. Footer: 3 new footer widgets, totaling 5 different footer widgets

  • Footer with logo
  • Footer with newsletter widget
  • Footer with social media bar centralized
  • Available for all themes

3. Results: 2 new results list widgets, totaling 4 different results widgets

  • Results list with grid view with filters on the left
  • Results list with grid view with filters on the right
  • Available for all themes

4. New Events Calendar widget available for all themes
5. New Nearby results functionality
6. New console command to enable or disable the maintenance mode

Header Widgets

We made header widgets that were once exclusive to our Medical, Restaurant, and Wedding themes available to the default eDirectory theme so clients can take advantage of those features without having to utilize any one specific theme.

Footer Widgets

The footer has also received some TLC with some new display features with new personalization options with the logo centered, social media links, or a newsletter widget. Clients can now select the footer design that works best and toggle between them as needed.

Grid View

The latest results list now allows for a grid view, showing content in easy to scan “cards”. This widget also has variations to display the search filters on either the right or left side.

Events Calendar Widget

A new interactive events calendar widget has also been added to make it much easier for visitors to find events they interested in attending based on the monthly calendar view. A highly requested feature that we’re very happy to have released. Recurring events are an especially enhanced feature of this new widget to run events that keep visitors coming back to the site.

Nearby Results Functionality

We’re really excited about one key element of this new release, which is the nearby results functionality for an improved search experience for our online community users to better find what they are looking for. This updated functionality allows both local community site and international vendor directory owners to better tailor to what extent nearby results will be displayed. This feature can even be personalized for specific locations, so if you have certain metropolitan areas or small municipalities, you can edit the nearby search results radius for those geographies specifically, pretty cool!

New Maintenance Mode

The new maintenance mode functionality now makes it even easier to enable while simultaneously allowing the site to be locked publicly while the site owner can make edits to the site and see it all live while logged in. This makes setting up the site more intuitive for the site owner so they can see the changes they make live.

Take advantage of the eDirectory July Upgrade now!

If you’re looking to launch your online Enterprise with all the newest features available, feel free to pick the plan that works best for you and get started in just a few minutes. Have any questions or would like to get connected with your assigned account executive to make sure we’re the best solution for your project? We’d love to meet you, simply request an eDirectory demo here.

If you’re an active customer of eDirectory and would like to schedule your site for an upgrade, you can get started here by completing this short Upgrade Request form.

Thank you for being the best part of eDirectory and we look forward to growing with you!

New eDirectory Facebook Group for our users

Join eDirectory Group on Facebook and get connected to people like you!

eDirectory.com Communities

The new eDirectory Facebook Group of users is proof that webinar events at eDirectory.com have been a relative success, both for eDirectory and its global community of directory software clients.  As we got started we had a  few interruptions with the new webinar software and getting familiar with how it all worked, yet we see the applications for our business and the benefits for our clients, so we will be moving forward with weekly webinars after a slight maintenance period to get the next series planned and executed.  We have learned a great deal about what we can do to continue our mission of building the best directory software on the planet and we thank everyone for their participation thus far.

Of the many pieces of actionable intelligence one we were able to roll out fairly quickly was the launch of our private partner strategy group on Facebook.  We’ve already seen some directory owners interacting with each other and can see the potential for this as we continue to grow our community.  We are committed to making ourselves accessible to all of our clients worldwide, no matter where they are, and these private groups are an excellent example of our goals here at eDirectory.com.  Clients today have a myriad of resources at eDirectory like a knowledge base we constantly update, chat support, customer success agents on call, our blog, webinars, a support ticket system, and now our new private groups on social media.

We hope to see both clients and those interested in launching an online directory website with eDirectory get all the information needed to have the best experience possible with our platform., and we are confident these new strategy groups will play a significant role in this goal.  We will strive to take every piece of feedback we receive and based on its ability to be adopted throughout the platform, have it added to the MOD Store, and to or enact a fundamental change in the logic of the directory software system. Nothing is off the table!

There are some exciting new optimizations and functionalities coming up on the next development cycle of the eDirectory.com directory software solution and some of those even came from our recent community events!  We believe this is only the beginning of bringing our powerful community participants closer together online to power more “meaningful communities” for all our members and users to be a part of, one site at a time!

We invite you to please join us in our Facebook group found here. Please feel free to get started with joining the groups, introducing yourself, inviting friends and family to get ready to learn more and earn more with other online entrepreneurs and community leaders!

Please keep the great ideas coming and we look forward to seeing our online communities grow, the same as we hope to see those of our clients’ online communities growing as well.  Thank you for being the best part of eDirectory.com and we look forward to seeing what you build with our powerful directory software, cheers!

 

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Webinar Wednesdays is BACK!

Webinar Wednesdays is BACK!

webinar wednesdays

So we’re almost half-way through 2017 here (already, sheesh!) and the time certainly has gone by quickly at eDirectory.com. Looking a few years back we pioneered “Webinar Wednesdays” and it was a huge success since it allowed us to LEARN more from our online directory website clients. This was what we believed to be the most important benefit of conducting online directory software tutorials LIVE, so we could see in real-time any issues our clients were having, or what directory features they were most excited about, or what the newest upgrades entailed for their specific online communities.

As many things go in business, you tend to lose sight of what is important when you are given exciting new ventures to embark on. We’ve been busy making foundational upgrades to the entire directory software system, operational enhancements to provide better quality customer service, and we’ve also added loads of new videos to make sure clients have a better experience with this powerful (although easy to use) directory website solution. So now that we’ve spent the last year making waves with our development team with the last 3 upgrades, we are READY to re-release our weekly webinar program to our international community.

We are more than thrilled to be hosting our weekly FREE webinars for active customers as well as those looking to launch with eDirectory and wanting to see how it all works before getting started. In doing so, we’ll be alternating topics each week until we find a few our community would like to have recurring, so we’re open to any and all feedback as we kick things off here.

We curated 4 topics to begin our NEW weekly webinar series, you can see those here below:

Introducing the New Page Editor

We’ll cover the widget-based front-end and how easy it is to bring your unique vision to life on your online directory website. Drag, drop, save, and share!
Wednesday, May 24th
10am PDT – Pacific
1pm EDT – Eastern
6pm BST – Europe

The newest platform upgrade at eDirectory.com, and why clients LOVE it!

We’ll present all the powerful new features recently made available on the directory website platform and take questions from active customers and those looking to launch their online Enterprise with eDirectory.
Wednesday, May 31st
10am PDT – Pacific
1pm EDT – Eastern
6pm BST – Europe

Question and Answer Community Forum (+ Product Updates)

We’ll start with some recent product updates and then open up the floor for a learning session by taking live inquiries.
Wednesday, June 7th
10am PDT – Pacific
1pm EDT – Eastern
6pm BST – Europe

10 Tips to Creating Successful, Revenue-Generating Online Directories

We’ll cover tips and strategies to create the most opportunities for success with your online directory website.
Wednesday, June 14th
10am PDT – Pacific
1pm EDT – Eastern
6pm BST – Europe

All of our community webinars are held on first-come, first-served bases. Upon signing up, you’ll receive a calendar invitation and some reminders before the show begins.

If you have any recommendations about webinar topics,
we’d love to hear from you. Would you like more information about our community webinars or private training sessions? If so, please send an email to marketing@ eDirectory.com.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to meet the team and see if eDirectory.com is the right choice for your online directory business! Register now for your favorite topic(s) and be sure to stay in touch with eDirectory.com for company and product updates at FACEBOOK, TWITTER, LINKEDIN, and YOUTUBE.

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