Web businesses are great because they’re quick to set up, capital lite, and can be very profitable. But do subscription websites work? Should you put together a subscription website? 

All legitimate questions, but I think we’re going to have to break this topic a part a bit to provide a good answer. Let’s get going.

Do Subscription Websites Work?

Yes, subscription websites work. There are numerous examples of profitable subscription sites, and creating one can turn into a lucrative business if you execute well. 

But let’s take a step back here. What’s the goal? 

A profitable standalone business – Subscription websites work well as profitable standalone businesses. They can be highly profitable if you have the right offer and the right market. 

There are various different profit models here. SaaS (software as a service) is the most obvious model. Software, especially niche software, can be relatively easy to develop if you are a coding wiz, and if it scratches that market itch, you can make a lot of money. 

You could also set up a pay-for-access news site. You do need to make sure that the site is highly targeted on a special niche, though. That means that the niche is hungry for specialist in-depth content or news, and they’re willing to pay for it. Usually, prospects in the niche would need the information to accomplish an important goal they have, such as stock trading profits. 

Membership websites are a subset of subscription websites since they charge regular subscription fees. If you have significant skill and experience in some domain, and people are willing and able to pay to access your expertise, then you have the makings of a possibly very lucrative business. 

Lead generation for offline subscription business – You can have a subscription business without having a website, but sometimes it’s handy to have a website for lead generation and to take payments. 

When you send out your physical mail, run your online ads, or even publish articles on other websites, you need a place to send your warm leads so they can take further action: opt in to your mailing list, sign up for your product or service, etc. 

A website here is a highly valuable asset, and you should probably put one together to elevate your lead gen. 

Not all subscription businesses deliver the goods online. If you’re taking payment for physical goods or services bought on a subscription basis, a website can be a great way to centralize and document customer payments, since it can house your sales page and provide other key information to buyers. 

Physical businesses looking to increase customer lifetime value – A subscription website can also be a great way to increase the number of sales for your best customers. 

Every business has good and bad customers. The best customers want to buy from you repeatedly, and having a subscription site – maybe putting purchases on autopilot through a subscription payment agreement – is a good way to do this. 

Getting your best customers onto a subscription site also allows you to communicate with them more often and provide them with special treatment so you can keep them for longer. You can also dig deeply into how they think, and hopefully adjust your marketing to increase your ability to try to attract more customers like them. 

So, do subscription websites work? 

Absolutely. But, it depends on your offer and execution, among other things.

Now that you’re up to speed on this topic, you should read: What Is A SaaS Subscription Model?