Creating a Free Membership with a Trial Period (Limited-Time Free Membership)
Table of Contents
s2Member Pro enables the s2Member Pro-Forms, which includes Free Registration Forms. Using these forms in combination with a Trial Period, you can offer a limited-time Free Membership.
Note: These Free Registration forms do not require the associated payment gateway to be configured, as the Free Registration forms do not make any contact with a payment gateway. If all you're going to use are the Free Registration forms on your site, you can skip the payment gateway configuration and ignore any associated warning messages.
Step 1: Generate the Free Registration Pro-Form
Visit WordPress Dashboard → s2Member → PayPal Pro-Forms → PayPal Pro / Free Registration Forms to generate the Free Registration Pro-Form. (If you're not using the payment gateway features at all, it doesn't matter if you use the Stripe Pro-Forms or the PayPal Pro-Forms section to generate the Free Registration forms--they do the same thing.)
Copy the generated WordPress Shortcode at the bottom:
Step 2: Modify Shortcode to add a Trial Period (Limited-Time Access)
When you add the WordPress Shortcode you copied in the previous step to a WordPress Page on your site (e.g., the page where you want to put the Free Registration Pro-Form), you'll notice that the shortcode contains these two attributes:
Those attribute define a Trial Period (
tp) and a Trial Term (
tt). For the Trial Term, possible values are:
D = Days,
W = Weeks,
M = Months,
Y = Years. The Trial Period is a whole number. (For more information on Shortcode Attributes, see WordPress Dashboard → s2Member → PayPal Pro-Forms → Shortcode Attributes (Explained).)
For example, let's say you wanted to provide a Free Registration that lasted only 5 days. You would set those attributes to:
tp="5" tt="D". Or let's say you wanted the Free Membership to last only 2 months:
Once you've modified the attributes, you're ready to go! When someone uses that Pro-Form to sign up for a free membership, their account will be limited to the trial period you defined.
Here's a full example Free Registration Pro-Form that provides a free 1-week membership:
[s2Member-Pro-PayPal-Form register="1" level="0" ccaps="" desc="Signup now, it's Free!" tp="1" tt="W" captcha="clean" /]
What happens when the Trial Period is over?
When the Trial Period on a Free Membership ends, what happens depends on your Automatic EOT Behavior configuration (see WordPress Dashboard → s2Member → PayPal Options → Automatic EOT Behavior).
By default, the Free Registration Pro-Form is configured to provide access to Level 0 / Free Subscriber. However, if you want Free Subscribers to be demoted to a lower level after their free membership expires (so that they can keep their account and so that you can, for example, up-sell them a paid membership), you must use a level higher than Level 0, as there is no level lower than Level 0 for s2Member to demote a Free Subscriber.
If you want to have free subscribers demoted (instead of having their account deleted; see the Automatic EOT Behavior configuration), then you need to change the
level="0" attribute in the Pro-Form Shortcode to something higher, such as
Or, if you're using Custom Capabilities, you could set Free Subscribers to have a specific Custom Capability (e.g.,
free) and when their Trial Period is over, that Custom Capability will be stripped from their account (again, see the Automatic EOT Behavior configuration for more information).