The Hidden Details of Membership Upgrades and Prorations

When purchasing a WordPress membership plugin, most people don't think about how the plugin will impact the ability of their future members to upgrade… or even whether they'll be able to upgrade.

And the unfortunate fact is that many plugins don't handle upgrades at all.

I actually fell prey to this on a client's project a few years ago simply because we didn't think about upgrades in the beginning. It turned into a huge issue for the client that I eventually had to fix with custom code.

Now whenever I set up a membership site, I always consider the details that can make life hard once the site is up and running. And one of those most critical of these issues is the upgrade and downgrade process.

That said, check out how MemberPress helps your members upgrade and downgrade easily and automatically.


Using Groups, you can specify a “group” of membership products, whether these products are part of an “Upgrade Path”, and what order you want them arranged in. MemberPress Groups also allows you to generate an attractive pricing page for your membership products.

Self-Service Upgrades and Downgrades

When a member wants to upgrade or downgrade the membership product they're subscribed to, they can simply log into their Self-Service Account Page and click the “Upgrade” link next to their subscription. From there, the member is redirected to the group pricing page which shows the level they're subscribed to and the level they can upgrade or downgrade to.


I've yet to find another WordPress membership plugin that handles prorations with the same ease and simplicity as MemberPress. In fact, most other plugins don't handle prorations at all.

For example, imagine that a member has already paid for a month of their membership, and halfway through the month decides to upgrade. MemberPress automatically figures out and charges the prorated amount the member will need to pay for the rest of the month at the new level.

Prorations in MemberPress can be calculated for subscriptions with different periods (weekly to monthly, weekly to yearly, monthly to lifetime) and even between different payment methods (e.g., when a member's first subscription was via PayPal but the member wants to upgrage with Stripe)

MemberPress' proration routines are solid, comprehensive, and fully automatic.

The way it handles upgrades automatically is one of the many reasons MemberPress is simply the best plugin available for people who are serious about creating their own professional membership sites.

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About Blair Williams

Blair is the creator of MemberPress and Easy Affiliate. He is an experienced software developer who has invented large scale web apps for scores of businesses. Blair now focuses on WordPress and Ruby development. You can read his blog by visiting