Are you looking for a Patreon alternative to make more money from your YouTube and other social channels?
Patreon is a popular crowdfunding platform that helps content creators monetize their work. Fans can subscribe and pay a regular fee to support their favorite artist or creator. However, Patreon may not be the right platform for many people due to fees and censorship issues.
In this article, we’ll share the best Patreon alternatives to monetize your audience.
Why Do You Need a Patreon Alternative?
Patreon provides a platform for vloggers, musicians, writers, journalists, podcasters, and other creators to generate a consistent income stream from their content, but it has several big shortcomings.
First, it’s hard to create your own brand since there are over 6 million monthly active users on Patreon. You’ll compete with other creators in your niche, and it can be challenging to make your content discoverable for new users. Not to mention, you get limited tools to promote your content.
Then there is an issue of censorship. Patreon’s content restrictions can be strict for people in particular niches, as political content creators faced crackdowns in the past. As a result, their fan base reduced dramatically.
Lastly, the fee charged by Patreon can be a big turn-off for some content creators. For instance, it charges a flat 5%, 8%, and 12% on top of the payment processing fee on your monthly income on Patreon, depending on the pricing tier you’re subscribed to.
Creators just don’t need another tax on their earnings.
This is why many power users switch away to Patreon alternatives like WordPress because it’s more powerful, and it gives you full control.
Let’s look at why you should use WordPress as a Patreon alternative.
What Makes WordPress a Great Alternative to Patreon?
WordPress is a popular website builder powering more than 43% of all the websites on the internet, and it’s free to use. You might think that starting a website from scratch is a lot of work and takes too much time, but that’s not the case anymore.
You can create a WordPress website of any type in no time using a drag and drop website builder like SeedProd, which requires no coding at all.
WordPress comes with over 59,000+ free plugins that you can use to maximize your earnings, grow your traffic, get more followers, and build an email subscriber base that can never be taken away from.
Another benefit of using WordPress is that it offers more control over your content than Patreon. You’ll be protected from changes in terms of service and don’t have to worry about losing your fan base due to content restrictions.
With WordPress, you can even offer different payment options on your site and make money online without worrying about paying a portion of your earnings to Patreon.
Here’s what you’ll need the following to create your WordPress website:
- A domain name. This will be the address of your online store (e.g. wpbeginner.com).
- A WordPress hosting account. This is where your website files will be stored.
- An SSL certificate. This allows you to securely accept payments online.
Normally, web hosting costs $7.99 per month, a domain name starts at $14.99 per year, and an SSL certificate costs around $69.99 per year.
This can be a big investment when you’re just starting out.
Luckily, Bluehost has agreed to offer our readers a big 60% discount on web hosting, plus a free domain name and SSL certificate.
Basically, you can get started for as low as $2.75 per month.
Simply click on the Bluehost button below, and the discount will automatically be applied.
That said, let’s look at some WordPress tools and plugins that you can use as Patreon alternatives.
MemberPress is the best membership plugin for WordPress and it is super easy to use. It lets you create a membership website and have full control over who can access your premium content.
It’s a great alternative to Patreon because the plugin lets you set up multiple membership tiers and enables you to restrict access to any premium content based on the user’s membership level. You can even use the plugin to create a video membership website in WordPress.
Besides that, it comes with a powerful course builder. You can create and sell online courses using MemberPress. They also have a content drip feature that allows members to see the content after they’ve completed a certain course or been a member for a particular time.
Another advantage of using MemberPress is that it easily integrates with popular payment providers like Stripe and PayPal, and all the best email marketing services.
2. Easy Digital Downloads
Easy Digital Downloads is one of the best eCommerce plugins for WordPress and lets you sell digital products.
If you’re an artist, musician, writer, developer, or any other content creator that sells digital products like music, ebooks, PDF files, videos, premium software licenses, and more, then Easy Digital Downloads is the perfect Patreon alternative for you.
Using the plugin, you can manage and sell files with ease. It has a built-in shopping cart system that makes it effortless for users to purchase your digital products.
You can also track the download activity of your customers inside the WordPress dashboard and get reports to see how your downloads are performing.
Note: There’s also a free version of Easy Digital Downloads that you can install in WordPress. Alternatively, you can use SiteGround’s EDD hosting which comes with WordPress and EDD pre-installed.
WooCommerce is one of the best eCommerce plugin in the market, and you can use it create an online store in no time.
Using WooCommerce, you can sell digital and physical products. It’s excellent for content creators that want to sell merchandise to their fans. Plus, it offers an inventory management feature that helps you keep track of how many products you have available for purchase.
There are also tons of WooCommerce plugins and extensions to help you grow your website. Many website themes for WooCommerce are also available, so you can design an online store just the way you want.
You can even design a custom WordPress theme using a compatible drag and drop builder like SeedProd.
WooCommerce also supports popular payment gateways like Stripe and PayPal. Other than that, the plugin offers extensive documentation, community forums, and support to help you out.
4. WP Simple Pay
WP Simple Pay is the best Stripe payment plugin for WordPress. As a content creator, you can monetize your site by adding a payment button using the plugin, and there’s no need to set up a shopping cart.
Simply add the payment option to your site to let your fans support you. Using the plugin, you can easily accept credit card payments, Apple Pay, Google Pay, ACH payments, iDEAL, and more.
You can even set up different subscriptions for recurring payments, just like Patreon, only with much lower fees.
WP Simple Pay also helps in collecting donations. You also get an option to set up discount coupon codes, allow users to subscribe or pay one-time, add free trials, and more.
Note: There’s a free version of WP Simple Pay plugin available that you can use as well.
Blubrry is one of the best WordPress podcast hosting services in the market. It’s a perfect Patreon alternative for podcasters who want more control over their content.
You can create a podcast website in no time with Blubrry. Another advantage is that you can easily distribute your podcast to popular platforms like Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Amazin Music, TuneIn, iHeart Radio, Pandora, and more.
Blubrry comes with a powerful podcast plugin called PowerPress that lets you manage your podcast files in WordPress. Blubrry also has a large community of podcasters, and you can easily find forums to learn from other experienced and successful podcasters.
6. WP Crowdfunding
WP Crowdfunding is a powerful WordPress fundraising plugin that you can use as a Patreon alternative to create a fundraising site like GoFundMe and Kickstarter.
The plugin is based on WooCommerce and allows you to raise funds for your creative project. Its native wallet system helps keep track of all the funds you’ve raised.
WP Crowdfunding also easily integrates with payment gateways like Stripe, PayPal, Authorize.net, Skrill, and more. The plugin is super easy to use and offers a beginner-friendly user interface.
Alternative: You can also use a fundraising plugin like WP Charitable to raise money for your cause. It comes with powerful features like crowdfunding, peer-to-peer fundraising, customizable donation forms, an easy donor management dashboard, multiple payment gateway integrations, and more. There’s also a free version of WP Charitable to get you started.
Which is the Best Patreon Alternative?
After carefully evaluating all the popular Patreon alternatives, we believe the top Patreon alternative is MemberPress. It lets you restrict premium content, sell courses, and offers a comprehensive set of features.
Easy Digital Downloads is a close second.
If you’re just looking to accept simple one-time or recurring payments from subscribers, then you can also use WP Simple Pay or their free version.
We hope that this article helped you find the best Patreon alternative to monetize your audience. You may also want to see our guides on how to choose the best blogging platform and the most important reasons why you should use WordPress.
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